BROWN, Charles Philip

BROWN, Charles Philip. Calcutta, India 10.11.1798 — London 12.12.1884. British Civil Servant in India (1817-55) and an Indologist, specialist of Telugu language. Son of the rev. David B., provost of the College of Calcutta. Educated by his father in India, then at Haileybury, entered in 1817 the Madras Civil Service. Served many years in revenue, magisterial and judicial duties in the districts of Cuddapah and Masulipatam. Became a good scholar of Persian, Sanskrit, Hindustani, and Telugu, which until then had been mostly discarded. 1838 Persian translator. 1846 postmaster-general, Telugu translator, member of the Council of Education, government director of Madras Bank, and Curator of MSS. at the College Library in Madras. Retired in 1855 and returned to England, where he became a (voluntary) Professor of Telugu at the University College in London.

CPhBr. was the pioneer of the scholarly study of Telugu, and of Indian chrono­logy, especially important as a lexicographer. His Telugu grammar and dictionaries were still reprinted in the 1970s. He also made a collection of more than 2000 manuscripts in Sanskrit and Telugu, which he presented in 1845 to M.L.S., now kept in Madras. He had important role in revitalizing Telugu literature.

Publications: Prosody of the Telugu and Sanskrit Languages explained. Madras 1827; “A Familiar Analysis of Sanskrit Prosody”, Asiatic Journal & sep. 20 p. 1837; Sanskrit Prosody and numerical Signs Explained. L. 1869; further articles in MJLS etc.

Vemana’s Verses, Moral, Religious, and Satirical. Telugu and English. 290 p. 1829; “Essay on the Language and Literature of the Telugus”, MJLS 10, 1839, 43-??.

a new Telugu version of St. Luke. 18??.

Vakyavali, or Exercises in Idioms, English and Telugu. Madras 1832; Dialogues in Telugu and English. Md. 1844, 2nd ed. 1853; The Telugu Reader, being a Series of Letters, private and on business, police and revenue matters, with an English Translation, grammatical Analysis, and Vocabulary. 1-3. Md. 1851-52, 2nd ed. 1867; Popular Telugu Tales. 1855.

A Grammar of the Telugu Language. Madras 1840, 2nd ed. 379 p. Md. 1857.

A Dictionary, Telugu and English, explaining the Colloquial Style used in Business and the Poetical Dialect. Madras 1852, thoroughly revised new edition by M. Venkataratnam, W. H. Campbell, and K. Veeresalingam. 1416 p. Md. 1903; A Dictionary of the Mixed Dialects and Foreign words used in Telugu. Md. 1854; A Dictionary, English and Telugu. 1367 p. Md. 1853, 2nd ed. Md. 1895.

The Zillah Dictionary in the Roman Character: explaining the various Words used in Business in India. Madras 1852; English and Hindustani Phraseology, or Exercises in Idioms. Calcutta 1855.

Cyclic Tables of Hindu and Mahommedan Chronology of the Telugu and Kannada Countries. 1850; Ephemeris showing the corresponding Dates according to the English, Telugu, Malayalam, and Mahommedan Calendaries 1751–1850. 18??; Carnatic Chronology, the Hindu and Mahommedan Methods of reckoning time, explained with Symbols and Historical Records. 11+90 p. L. 1863.

translated: The Wars of the Rajahs, being the History of Anantapuram (The Annals of Handeh Anantapuram). Written in Telugu in or about 1750-1780. 94 p. 1853.

A Titular Memory. 1861.

Sources: S. L[ane]-P[oole], D.N.B. 7, 1886; 2 accounts in Br. Biogr. Arch. 1st Series; Buckland, Dictionary; *JRAS 17, 1885, xv–xx; *autobiography privately printed 1866; Wikipedia.


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