THOMAS, Edward

THOMAS, Edward. 31.12.1813 — Kensington 10.2.1886. British Civil Servant and Indologist in India. Son of Honoratus Leigh Th., a surgeon. Educated at Haileybury. In 1832 joined the Bengal Civil Service as a writer. Worked as judge in Delhi, soon Superintending Judge of Saugor and Nerbudda Territory. He was often ill and in England on leave. In 1852 he refused the Foreign Secretaryship offered to him. Retired in 1857, in England concentrated on studies. C.I.E. 1884.

ET continued Prinsep’s work studying Indo-Greek, Indo-Scythian and Iranian numismatics, Indian metrology and epigraphy, also Sasanian and Islamic history and numismatics. Especially with articles he was said to be too rapid to publish and had often to correct himself the too bold theories put forth in them. He is said to have had “quick temper, intolerant of opposition”.

Publications: articles on numismatics and epigraphy in JASB, JRAS, NC etc.

Chronicles of the Pathan Kings of Delhi. 1847, 2nd enl. ed. 1871; Coins of the Kings of Ghazni. 1847, 1858.

– “On the Coins of the Dynasty of the Hindú Kings of Kabul”, JRAS 9, 1848, 177-192; “On the Dynasty of the Sáh Kings of Suráshtra”, JRAS 12, 1850, 1-77; “On the Coins of the Kings of Ghazní”, JRAS 9, 1848, 267-386; “Supplementary notes on the Coins of the K. of Gh.”, JRAS 17, 1860, 138-208; “The Pehlví Coins of the early Mohammedan Arabs”, JRAS 12, 1850, 253-347.

– “Notes Introductory to Sassanian Mint Monograms and Gems”, JRAS 13, 1852, 373-428; “Bactrian Coins”, JRAS 20, 1863, 99-134; “Indo-Parthian Coins”, JRAS 4, 1870, 503-521.

ed. Prinsep’s Essays on Indian Antiquities and Useful Tables. 1-2. 1858.

– “The Initial Coinage of Bengal”, JRAS 2, 1866, 145-224 & 6, 1873, 339-376.

– “Sassanian Inscriptions”, JRAS 3, 1868, 241-358.

– “Comments on Recent Pehlvi Decipherments. And Contributions to the Early History and Geography of Tabaristan”, JRAS 5, 1871, 408-459.

– “The revenues of Mughal Empire”, 1871-1882.

– “Ancient Indian Weights”, Numismata Orietalia 1, 1874.

Records of the Gupta Dynasty. 46 p. L. 1876; The Epoch of the Guptas”, JRAS 13, 1881, 524-551

– “The Early Faith of Asoka”, JRAS 9, 1877, 155-234 (Jaina); “The Rivers of the Vedas, and how the Aryans entered India”, JRAS 15, 1883, 357-386.

Sources: Buckland, Dictionary; S.L[ane]-P[oole], DNB 56, 1898, 178; *Athenaeum 21. & 28. Febr. 1886; JRAS Annual Report, May 1886, xxxix-cliii (partly from the Athenaeum); Wikipedia.

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