HOPKINS, Edward Washburn

HOPKINS, Edward Washburn. Northampton MA 8.9.1857 — Madison, CT 16.7.1932. U.S. Indologist. Professor in New Haven. Born in an old New English priestly and scholarly family, son of Lewis Spring Hopkins and Francis Jane Washburn. Studies of classical philology at Columbia University, B.A. 1878, with a thesis comparing Greek and Sanskrit literature. Learnt Sanskrit by himself from Whitney’s grammar. Three years further studies in Europe: Indology, Iranian and IE at Berlin (Weber) and Leipzig (Windisch). Ph.D. 1881 Leipzig. Returned to the States worked four years as Tutor of Latin at Columbia University, also taught Sanskrit and Avesta (A. V. W. Jackson among students). In 1885-95 Professor of Greek, Sanskrit and Comparative Philology at Bryn Mawr College. In 1895 succeeded Whitney as Salisbury Professor of Sanskrit at Yale. In 1896-97 visited India and made later a few short visits to Europe, but normally stayed in the States. In 1926 emeritus (and succeeded by Edgerton). In good health until his death he continued research. Died in his summer apartment. Hon. Ph.D. Yale, 1902 Columbia and Athens. Married 1893, one daughter and five sons.

EWH was a many-sided Indologist. He began with the sociological aspects of Hindu Dharma, especially Varṇa. A specialist of epics and history of religions, later also interested in general study of religion. In his late years rendered Indian legends in English metre.

Sources: Buckland, Dictionary; F. Edgerton, JAOS 52, 1932, 311-315 with photo; *S.W. Jamison, Lex. gramm. 1996, 428; *Nat. Cyclop. of Am. Biogr. 14, 476; briefly Wikipedia.

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