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M. Rnrusnr possessed a mind of_thc‘ highest order. Every thing he produced was done with facility, and was remarka‘b_le for its luminous and profound character. His loss cannot easily be supplied, aird Oriental literature will long have reason to deplore the untimely death which can-3~iedhirh 01?, when his judgment and acquirements might be supposed to have OB,])'_'ill.§£-l'_C8:clle(l their highest maturity.
“ One of the mostilhgstriods scholars reared under the auspices of M. REMUSA1‘ was J EAN ST. Mnnq,u'g,'ayhn, from an attack of cholera, followed his former master to the tomb at the lsiiiefiplerval of thirty-seven days.
“ While Assfflsmusnr devoted himself to the investigation of the philosophy, history, antiquities,and naturalhistoryof China,Tibet, and in general of all those countries v;h'qi9_Bud'd’hism and Chinese manners prevail, ST. Mnnrnv occupied himself with
_' '4;e'£§a'rches into the ancient history of Persia and the adjacent countries. He had for
' this purpose studied particularly the Semitic family of languages, the difiicult idiom of
- in-menia, and the Zend and P-ahlevi. The extent and value of his investigations may be judged of from the Memoirs on Armenia, which he published in two volumes : they are full of erudite and ingenious matter, and their appearance fully established his character as an Oriental scholar and critical antiquary.
“ The chronology of ancient nations was his favourite object of study, and he aimed at elevating it to the rank of one of the exact sciences. Unfortunately but few of his works in this path are printed, and the same remark applies to several valuable essays on the ancient history of Africa, and other subjects, which were read before the Académie des Inscriptions. In February, 1822,he published his opinion, that the Egyptian tablet, generally known under the name of the Zodiac of Dendera, was a work of comparatively modern date, and but few months had elapsed when the discoveries of Champollion proved it to be even more recent than the era assigned to it by M. S1‘. MARTIN, the monument itself, with the other erections of Esne and Dendera, being referable to the reign of the Emperor Claudius.
“ To M. Sr. MARTIN must be attributed the suggestion of an archaeological journey into the East, which was subsequently undertaken by that able and lamented scholar, Dr. SCHULTZ, at the expense of the French Government. Hisdesign was to collect Zend and Pahlevi MSS., antiquities, and medals, and to make fac-similes of all the cuneiform inscriptions. The specimens he had succeeded in obtaining previous to the melancholy termination of his existence by assassination were placed in the hands of M. Sr. MARTIN, and enabled him to complete an alphabet of the cuneiform character, published a few months before his decease, by M. KLAPROTH, in his “ Arnnco des diverses Ecritures," &c. Besides the literary labours noticed above, and many others which the Council is precluded from mentioning here, M. Sr. Mnnrm was the principal conductor of the journal published by the Asiatic Society at Paris; and to his care and exertions its high character, as a repository of Oriental literature, must be in a great measure ascribed. In conclusion, it may be said of M. ST. MARTIN, that he was not less respected for his strict integrity and ardent adherence to truth, than admired for the composure of his mind under the trials of adversity.
“ Scarcely had the dreadful scourge which had spread from Asia to Europe removed ST. MARTIN, ere it struck another eminent Oricntalist, of whom France might be justly proud ; in the latter end of the month of August, M. ANTOINE Lsormnn Cnnzr fell its victim in the sixtieth year of his age. _ To Monsieur DE CHEZY belongs the glory of having attempted and succeeded in laying open the rich stores of Sanscrit literature, at a period when no assistance was to be derived from grammars, or even the communications of others who had been tempted to explore the same path. Before the studies of Mr. Wu.xms and Sir WILLIAM JONES were known in Europe, M. DE CHEZY had penetrated, with no other key than the imperfect outlines of P. de St. FRANCIS BARTHELEMY, into the closed portals of Brahminical lore. The principal work which he has left behind him, is an editionand translation of the well -known Sanscrit drama entitled Sacountala. A short time before his death he finished transcribing another called the Dhourtta Samftgama ; the MS. of which is in the hands of the RARON DE SACY, and will probably be printed. An analysis of the celebrated
poem of the Ramayana is also spoken of as having been prepared by him : this, with a small essay on the theory of the Sl6ca, or Sanscrit heroic metre, comprises his principal -productions. He also published the poem of MEJNOON and LEILA, from the Persian, which was remarkable for the elegance of his diction ; and in 1831 an abstract and translation of the century of erotic verses by the poet Arnw. That the productions of his intense and unremitting study were not more numerous is deeply to be regretted, and must be ascribed to the unfortunate state of his health for many years, exasperated by the occurrence of some mortifying circumstances. M. CHEZY was remarkable for the amiability and gentle playfulness of his disposition, qualities which ensured him the devoted attachment of his friends and pupils.
“ The two professlorships left vacantbythe death of MM. REMUSAT and CHEZY have beenfilled byM. J omen and M. Bvnrzour. Both these able scholars are foreign members of this Society, and would satisfy every wish that could be formed for these important chairs being worthily filled, if we could forget the rare endowments of the eminent men whose loss we have had to deplore.
“ At the general meeting of the Society, held on the 1st of December, a donation of an edition of the Fables of LOCMAN, and two small works on the language of Iceland, was laid on the table from Professor EMANUEL RASK ; and it was then announced, there was reason to fear, that the highly distinguished scholar from whom they were received had died since he had despatched them to this country. This intelligence was shortly afterwards confirmed ; and in the death ‘of Professor Rnsx the study of Oriental literature has lost one of its most able and indefatigable adherents. The peculiar branch of research to which he had devoted himself rendered his investigations particularly interesting; and his numerous publications illustrative of the languages and literature of the ancient inhabitants of Northern Europe, combined with the knowledge which he had acquired of the most important languages and literary antiquities of the East, fully attest his qualifications for the task of comparing, showing
their agreement and distinction, and illustrating them. “ Among his numerous philological works may be mentioned grammars of the Italian,
Spanish, Anglo-Saxon, and Icelandic languages, treatises on the Phonics of India, and the Literals of Europe ; tracts on the Zend language and the Zend Avesta, and many others. '
“ In the course of the session of 1832, a communication addressed by Professor RASK to the Bombay Literary Society, containing his remarks on the last-mentioned subject, was read before this Society, and has been ordered to be inserted in the Transactions.
“ Professor RASK was remarkable for the facility he evinced in the acquisition of different languages. In the year 1822, it is stated that he was acquainted with no less than twenty-five. His knowledge of English was extensive and correct. He spent some years on a literarymissioninPersia, India, and Ceylon, where be procured manyvaluable manuscripts, and acquired much sound information on those points to which his attention was more especially directed. From his temperate habits of life, approaching indeed to abstemiousness, the vicissitudes of climate and season had no apparent efiect on his frame, and he gave promise of many years‘ continuance in his favourite pursuits, when the insidious effects of consumption prematurely terminated his useful and laborious career. His mild and gentle manners endeared him to his friends and acquaintance ; and he combined, with an extent of acquirements not often equalled, a remarkable diflidence and modesty.
“ Professor Rasx was keeper of the Oriental MSS. in the Royal Library at Copenhagen, and had recently been appointed a commissioner to prepare measures for the amelioration of the condition of the Danish colonies in Guiana. He was elected a
Foreign Member of the Royal Asiatic Society in the year 1826.”
honorably mentioned in the Report; but we observe nothing more than is already known to our readers in the sketch of their career.