TEMPLE, Richard Carnac. Allahabad 15.10.1850 — Territet, Switzerland 3.3.1931. Sir (2nd Bart.). British Colonial Officer in India and Burma, Indologist, Ethnologist and Historian. Son of Sir Richard T. (1826–1902), a well known and original Civil Servant in India, and Charlotte Martindale (d. 1855). Educated at Harrow and from 1868 at Cambridge (Trinity Hall, 1908 its Honorary Fellow). In 1871 he joined Royal Scots Fusiliers, went to India and was moved to Indian Army, from 1877 in Indian Staff Corps. In 1878-79 participated in Afghan war and 1887-89 in Burma war. Worked as civil servant in the Punjab in 1879-85, then in Mandalay and Rangoon. Major 1891. In 1895-1904 Chief Commissioner in the Andamans. Lieutenant-Colonel 1897. In 1904 retired and returned to England, where he held many public and scholarly offices, living in Kempsey, Worcestershire. In 1921 moved to Territet at Lac Leman in Switzerland. C.I.E. 1894. Bart. 1902 after his father. C.B. 1916. Fellow of British Academy 1925. Married 1880 Agnes Fanny Searle (d. 1943), two daughters and a son.
While Temple was much appreciated as a conscientious and industrious officer, he always found time to study manners, customs, folklore and cults of local people wherever he was posted. Soon he became an authority in ethnography. In retirement early travel accounts became his main interest.
Publications: Legends of the Punjab. 1-3. Bombay 1883-90-1901; Thirty-Seven Nats: A Phase of Spirit Worship Prevailing in Burma. 6+71 p. ill. 1906.
– Edited with J. F. Fleet: IA 14-20, 1886-1892 (then alone or with others?, also numerous articles in it, esp. on folklore); edited with notes Burnell’s posthumous “Devil-Worship of the Tuluvas”, IA 24-26, 1895-97 and Fallon’s A Dictionary of Hindustani Proverbs. 320 p. 1886.
– Census Reports of Burma, 1891, and the Andamans, 1901 (with grammar of South Andamanese); with E. H. Man A grammar of the Bôjingîjîda or South Andaman language. 17 p. Calcutta 1878.
– The theory of universal grammar as applied to savage languages. 40 p. L. 1899 (on Andaman); Anthropology as practical science. 96 p. L. 1914.
– Edited: Thomas Bowrey: The Countries around the Bay of Bengal. 56+378 p. Hakluyt Soc. 2nd Series 12. L.1903; Travels of Peter Mundy. 1-2. Hakluyt Soc. 2nd series 17. 1907-14; The Journals of Streynsham Master, 1675-1680. 1-2. L. 1911; The papers of Thomas Bowrey, 1669-1713. Hakluyt Soc. 1927; New Light on the Mysterious Tragedy of the Worcester. 491 p. 1930; The Itinerary of Ludovico di Varthema. Transl. from Italian by J. W. Jones. 85+121 p. L. 1928; also ed. his father’s Journals kept in Hyderabad, Kashmir, Sikkim and Nepal. 1-2. 27+314+ 303 p. 1887; ed. with B. S. Phillpotts & L. M. Anstey, The life of the Icelander Jón Ólafsson, traveller to India. 1-2. Hakluyt Soc. 1923-32.
– The Word of Lallâ the Prophetess. Done into English verse from the Lalla-Vakyani or Lal-Wakhi. 13+292 p. Cambridge 1924.
Sources: D.R. Bhandarkar, JASB 28, 1932, cciii-ccv; Buckland, Dictionary; R.E. E[nthoven], JRAS 1931, 725-728 *C.E. Oldham, IA 60, 1931, i-iv; *JAnthrSocBombay 14:7, 1932, 929; Wikipedia with photo.
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