LONG, James. Bandon, Cork 1814 — 23.3.1887. Rev. British (Irish) Missionary in India. While earlier sources claim that of his background little is known, but in any case he passed some time in Russia, Wikipedia referring to Oddie knows that he was the son of John and Anne Long and attended school at Bandon and visited Russia only in 1863. Ordained as deacon in 1839, he went to India in 1840 as a Missionary of Church Missionary Society and worked near Calcutta, mainly as teacher. In 1861 “Padre Long” superintended (some say, translated) the translation of the soon famous Bengali play, the Nil Darpan by Dinabandhu Mitra, directed against the indigo planters, and was therefore indicted for libel and sentenced to Rs. 1000 fine and a month’s imprisonment. After prison three years on leave in the U.K., then continued his work in Calcutta. In 1872 he returned to England and lived in London. In 1848 married Emily Orme (d. 1867).
Publications: “Tables of Comparative Philology, shewing specimens of the affinity of the Greek, Latin and English Languages, with the Sanskrti, Persian, Russian, Gaelic, Welsh, Lithuanian, German, Hebrew, and Anglo-Saxon”, JASB 12, 1843, 837-896 (with Hebrew!?).
– “Queries on the Archaeology of India”, JASB 16, 1847, 285f.; “Notice of a Ruin in Singhbhúm”, JASB 20, 1851, 283f.
– “Analysis of the Bengali Poem Ráj Málá, or Chronicles of Tripurá”, JASB 19, 1850, 533-557.
–“Analysis of the Raghuvança”, JASB 1852, 445-472.
– A descriptive Catalogue of Bengali works. 4+108 p. Calcutta 1855.
– Pravādamālā. 138 p. Calcutta 1868; Three thousand Bengali Proverbs and Proverbial Sayings illustrating native Life and Feeling amd Ryots and Women. 174 p. Calcutta 1872; Eastern Proverbs and Emblems, illustrating Old truths. 15+280 p. Trübner’s Oriental Series. L. 1881.
– Numerous articles in CR, etc., e.g. “Early Bengali Literature and Newspapers”, CR 13, 1850, 124-1??; “500 Questions on the Social Condition of the Natives of Bengal”, JRAS N.S. 2, 1866, 44-84.
– Calcutta in the Olden Times. Its Localities and Its People. 136 p. Reprinted from Calcutta Review. 137 p. Calcutta 1974; Calcutta and its neighbourhood, history of people and localities from 1690 to 1857. Three studies edited from Calcutta Review 1852-60 by S. Sen Gupta. Calcutta 1974.
Sources: Buckland, Dictionary; N.H. Choudhury in Banglapedia; JRAS 19, 1887, 524f.; *G.A. Oddie, Missionaries, Rebellion and Protonationalism: James Long of Bengal 1814-87. London 1999; Wikipedia with photo of his bust.
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