1 page, folio, slightly faded." />
26 February 2004
BURTON, Richard F. (1821-1890). Autograph letter signed ("Richrd F Burton Sr.") to the Assistant Political Agent at Aden, Camp Aden, 18 February 1855. 1 page, folio, slightly faded.
Burton, who would become renowned for his translation of the Arabian Nights, seeks the results of the Arabic examination he took before his recent trip to Africa. "I was examined by Lt. Playfair in the Arabic language & my paper was sent on your Information to Bombay. At the same time I addressed an official letter to the Secretary of the Examination Committee Bombay... On my return from Africa, some months afterwards, I find no notice of my Examination either in General Orders or Communicated to me..."
Burton was introduced to Arabic study by Dr. William Alexander Greenhill, in whose house he lived for a short time while at Oxford. "It was Dr. Greenhill who started him in the study of Arabic, by introducing him to Don Pascual de Gayangos, the Spanish scholar. Burton's academical career was limited to five terms, or little more than one year. With his continental education and his obstinate temper, he was not likely to conform to the monastic conventions then prevailing at Oxford..." (DNB).
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