RICE, Benjamin Lewis. Bangalore 17.7.1837 — 10.7.1927. British Schoolteacher, Historian and Indologist in India. Born in South India, where his father, —> Benjamin H. Rice, was working as missionary. Educated at home, then sent to school in England. After having worked for a while in business in London he came in 1860 to Mysore. First he was Principal of Central High School in Bangalore, in 1865-68 and 1870-73 Inspector of Schools in Mysore, in 1868-69 and 1873-83 Director of Public Instruction, Mysore State, 1883-90 Secretary to the Education Department, Mysore Government. In 1886/90-1905 Director of Archaeological Researches in Mysore. Retired in 1906 and returned to England, lived in Harrow until his death. C.I.E. Married Mary Sophia, the daughter of —> J. Garrett, ten children.
His scholarly interests included history, epigraphy and classical Kannada literature. Beside Kannaḍa he also knew Sanskrit.
Publications: Mysore and Coorg. A Gazetteer. 1. Mysore, in General. 12+658+12+15 p. 2. Mysore, by Districts. 3+504+12+27+21 p. 3. Coorg. 3+427+5+5+6+11 p. Bangalore 1876-78, rev. ed. 1-2. Westminster 1897.
– “On the Ganga Kings”, MJLS 1878, 138-149, and other articles.
– Mysore Inscriptions. 91+336+30 p. Bangalore 1879; Census Report on Mysore. 1881.
– Amara Simha. The Amara-Kosha, or Sanskrit Thesaurus. With meanings in English and Kannada, and an alphabetical Index to the words. 3rd ed. Bangalore 1883.
– Catalogue of Sanskrit Manuscripts in Mysore and Coorg. 327 p. Bangalore 1884.
– Edited: Bibliotheca Carnatica. 1882ff. (beginning with the Pamparāmāyaṇa).
– Edited: Nāgavarma’s Karnātaka Bhāshā Bhūshana. The oldest grammar extant of the Language. 44+96+22 p. Bangalore 1884; The Karṇāṭaka Śabdabhūṣanam of Bhaṭṭakalaṅka Deva. Bangalore 1890.
– Edited: Epigraphia Carnatica. 1-12. Bangalore 1886-99, beginning with Coorg Inscriptions. Ep. Carn. 1. 1886, 2nd ed. 1914; many epigraphical articles.
– Mysore and Coorg from the inscriptions. 19+238 p. 10 pl. L. 1909.
Sources: L. D. Barnett, JRAS 1927, 934-936; Buckland, Dictionary; Wikipedia with photo; with photo in http://www.persecution.in/content/rev-benjamin-lewis-rice-missionaries-contributions-india.
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