R. C. Temple

R. C. Temple (Richard Carnac Temple) (15 October 1850 — 1931) was an officer in British Indian Army with deep interest in the folklore.

Son of Sir Richard Temple, Bart, (q.v.), whom he succeeded in 1902 : educated at Harrow and Trinity Hall, Cambridge : entered the Army, 1871, and Indian Staff Corps, 1877 : Lt-Colonel, 1897 : served in Afghan campaign, 1878-9 : Burma war, 1887-9 = President, Rangoon Municipality, 1891 : Chief Commissioner, Andaman Islands, 1 894-1904 : author (with E. H. Man) of A ndatnanese Language (with Mrs. Steel), of Wide-awake Stories, Legends of the Panjab, 2 vols, ; Editor of Fallon’s Hindustani Proverbs, Burnell’s Devil Worship of the Tuluvas • Editor and Proprietor of The Indian Antiquary: C.I.E., 1894. [Dictionary of Indian Biography]

Richard Temple began his career in South Asia in 1877 with the Royal Scots Fusiliers regiment. He spent time in India and in Burma before becoming Chief Commissioner of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands in 1894. He was particularly interested in languages, a passion he shared with Man. Temple spent much time pursuing his scholarly interests, researching historical manuscripts and editing the Indian Antiquary. Like other officers he considered recording and sharing knowledge of Britain’s colonial subjects to be an important part of his role and he collected objects on his travels. During his working life and in his retirement, Temple donated many of these to museums throughout the UK.

Temple was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel in 1897, before his retirement in 1904. He established a small museum in his home in Kempsey, Worcestershire, but sold much of his collection in 1921 before moving to Switzerland. The collection that Temple donated to Brighton Museum & Art Gallery in 1923 included objects from Australia, South Asia and Africa. In contrast to the collections that he assembled for institutions such as the British Museum and the Pitt Rivers Museum (Oxford), his collection at Brighton is smaller and more varied, and may have been formed for his personal reference. [#2]

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