Wednesday, December 01, 2004

John Wilson

It is the 200th birth anniversary of John Wilson -- Scottish missionary, indologist, sanskrit lover, linguist, founder of Wilson College, former Vice Chancellor of Mumbai University, a former president of the Royal Asiatic Society, and "one of the seven founders of modern Bombay". Wilson was Vice-Chancellor of Mumbai University in 1868. The University Library started with his personal collection in 1880, five years after his death, and a major chunk of the library stock then consisted of his personal collection of books and manuscripts. My current interest in Wilson is due to the latter fact. I need to get a Sanskrit Manuscript from the Mumbai University Library. According to the The 'New Catalogus Catalogorum', that manuscript is there in the Mumbai University collection. Still I need to find out whether or not the manuscript is actually there. It's been two weeks since I e-mailed to the concerned authorities, but it looks like people over there either do not check their e-mail or do not promptly respond. I see that there's a fortnight long celebration to mark John Wilson's birth anniversary. Searching through the dusted manuscripts and replying to an e-mail is perhaps more difficult than organizing celebrations!


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