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Re: Forbes of India

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  • Ed St.Germain
    Miss Bets: James Forbes (1749-1819) was a British travel writer renowned for his many journeys to India, which resulted in his influential,heavily illustrated
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 31, 2004
      Miss Bets:

      James Forbes (1749-1819) was a British travel writer renowned for his many
      journeys to India, which resulted in his influential,heavily illustrated (by
      himself) 4-volume 1813 "Oriental Memoirs"; held in captivity at Verdun by
      the French, his remarkable facility for drawing was brought to the attention
      of Napoleon, who viewed the several thousand sketches he carried with him
      depicting his travels around the world and ordered him released; he aso
      authored the 1810 "Reflections on the Character of the Hindus and the
      Necessity of Converting Them to Christianity."

      In 1775 Forbes went to India as private secretary to Col. Keating, and was
      later appointed to a post in Baroche in Goojerat. In 1780 he became
      collector and resident of Dubhoy, remaining in India until 1784 when the
      district in which he lived was ceded to the Mahrattas. In 1810 Forbes was
      put in charge of his fifteen-month old grandson, the future orator and
      historian, Charles de Montalembert, and thenceforth his life was divided
      between Charles and the Oriental Memoirs.

      Forbes filled 152 folio volumes (some 152,000 pages), with notes for this
      monumental work. Indeed, Forbes himself describes the "Oriental Memoirs" in
      his preface as the "principal recreation of my life." Most of the original
      drawings for the plates were made in the 1770s and '80s.

      It's not the easiest work to find. Yale has a set, as does the Smithsonian,
      UC Berkeley, Cambridge (U.K.), Univ of South Carolina and the Library of VA
      in Richmond.

      Best regards,
      Ed
      For Revolutionary War Info on the Internet, your first choice should be:
      www.AmericanRevolution.org
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