Robert Caldwell an Hugo Schuchardt (01509)

von Robert Caldwell

an Hugo Schuchardt


05. 03. 1884

language Englisch

Schlagwörter: language Tamil

Zitiervorschlag: Robert Caldwell an Hugo Schuchardt (01509). London, 05. 03. 1884. Hrsg. von Bernhard Hurch (2007). In: Bernhard Hurch (Hrsg.): Hugo Schuchardt Archiv. Online unter, abgerufen am 01. 04. 2023. Handle:


19 Delahay St..,1
London, S.W.
5 March 1884

My dear sir,

Your letter of the 4th Jan. addressed to me in India has reached me here. If I had been at all in India I should have been happy to endeavour to obtain for you the information you desire respecting the local varieties of the Indo-Portuguese language2 spoken on the Coromandel Coast.3 There is a considerable number of Indo-Portuguese Christians in all the large towns on |2| the Coast, including especially S t.. Thomé, a suburb of Madras.4 Most of these persons have ceased to speak Portuguese, but in the recently published Reprint of the Indian Census of 1881 (Vol I, p 200) – I find that 3,641 persons are entered as speaking Portuguese in the Madras Presidency.5 The remarks contained in that pera might be interesting to you.

I do not expect to return to India till about the end of the year, but the best suggestion I can give you is |3| that you should allow me to send your letter to a friend of mine in Madras, the Rev. Dr.. Bower6, an eminent Dravidian scholar, who has, I think, some acquaintance with the Indo-Portuguese, and who at all events will be able to make the needful enquiries for you.

On hearing from you in reply I shall send him your letter, accompanied by a request from myself. Unfortunately, the Indian scholar best acquainted |4| with Portuguese, Dr.. Burnell,7 is dead.

I am,

Faithfully Yours,

R. Caldwell, Bishop.

1 This address corresponded to the Office of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts, an Anglican missionary body nowadays known as the United Society for the Propagation of the Gospel, to which Caldwell belonged.

2 Caldwell appears to have written “languages” originally, but the final “s” was later partly erased.

3 Coromandel was at the time a current name for the Southeatern coast of India, roughly corresponding to the coastal stretch of the modern-day state of Tamil Nadu.

4 “St.. Thomé” refers to one of the earliest Portuguese settlements in Southeast India, known in Portuguese as São Tomé de Meliapore and currently, in English, as Mylapur/Mylapore. The Portuguese settlement formed around the alleged tomb of St. Thomas and, though originally a discrete town, had by the time of this letter already been engulfed by the growing metropolis of Madras (modern-day Chennai).

5 The Madras Presidency, one of the major administrative divisions of British India, had at this time jurisdiction over much of South India, including territories that belong to the present-day states of Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh.

6 Henry Bower (1812-1885), an Anglo-Indian missionary born in Madras (Chennai). He was a renowned scholar of Tamil, with several publications and translations to his credit.

7 Arthur Coke Burnell, who also corresponded with Schuchardt and was co-author (with Henry Yule) of the famous Hobson-Jobson dictionary of Indo-English terms. Burnell died in 1882.

Faksimiles: Universitätsbibliothek Graz Abteilung für Sondersammlungen, Creative commons CC BY-NC (Sig. (01509))