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Sir George Abraham Grierson
Sir George Abraham Grierson OM KCIE (7 January 1851, Glenageary, County Dublin, Ireland – 9 March 1941, Camberley, Surrey, England, United Kingdom) was born to a prominent
Dublin family in 1851. His father and grandfather, both also named
George, were well-known printers and publishers.
Educated at St. Bees School, Cumberland and Trinity College, Dublin, he
joined the Indian Civil Service in 1871 and
reached the Bengal Presidency in 1873. He would
eventually become Magistrate and Collector at Patna and, later, Opium Agent for Bihar. In 1898 he was appointed
Superintendent of the newly formed Linguistic Survey of India
and moved to England "for convenience of consulting European
libraries and scholars",
Grierson published scholarly works throughout his career: on the
dialects and peasant life of Bihar, on Hindi literature, on bhakti, and on linguistics.
His contemporaries noted his lack of sympathy for Advaita
Vedanta, which he regarded as "pandit religion" but noted his
"warm appreciation of the monotheistic devotion of the country
Grierson had thought that bhakti stemmed from contact with
Christian communities but later admitted that Indian bhakti was
older than Christianity, without ruling out later
Most of Grierson's later work deals with linguistics. In a
celebratory account of his life, F.W. Thomas and R.L. Turner refer
to the extensive publications of the Linguistic Survey of India as
"a great Imperial museum, representing and systematically
classifying the linguistic botany of India".
In 1928 Grierson was appointed to the Order of Merit (OM).
He was knighted as a Knight Commander of the Order of the Indian Empire
- Grierson, George Abraham. Bihar Peasant Life, Being a
Discursive Catalogue of the Surroundings of the People of That
Province, With Many Illustrations From Photographs Taken By the
Author. Prepared Under Orders of the Government of Bengal.
Calcutta, The Bengali Secretariat Press, & London, Trübner
& Co., (1885); Cosmo (1998) ISBN 8170201853
- Grierson, George Abraham. Seven Grammars of the Dialects
and Subdialects of the Bihari Language (1883–87) 3 vols. ISBN
- Grierson George Abraham, Linguistic Survey of India,
11 Vols. in 19 Parts Delhi, Low Price Publ. (2005) ISBN
- Grierson, George Abraham. A Dictionary of the Kashmiri
Language. Calcutta: Asiatic Society of Bengal, 1932.
- Lalla-Vakyani, Sir George Grierson and Dr. Lionel D. Barnett
Litt. D., R. A. S. monograph, Vol. XVII, London 1920.
- ———. 1909. Gleanings from the Bhakta-Mala. Journal of the Royal
Asiatic Society: 607-644.
- ———. 1910a. Gleanings from the Bhakta-Mala. Journal of the
Royal Asiatic Society: 269-306.
- ———. 1910b. Gleanings from the Bhakta-Mala. Journal of the
Royal Asiatic Society: 87-109.
- Thomas, F.W., and R.L. Turner. 1941. George Abraham
Grierson 1851-1941. London: Humphrey Milford Amen House,
- George Abraham Grierson (1973). Linguistic survey of
India. Motilal Banarsidass. http://www.amazon.com/Linguistic-survey-George-Abraham-Grierson/dp/B0007C18KC.
- Photos of Sir George
- ~ King's Printers to