Graphical version

Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland

CROOKE, William (1848-1923)


Reference code(s): GB 1446 MS 123-139

Held at: Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland

Title: CROOKE, William (1848-1923)

Date(s): [1890]-1923

Level of description: Collection (fonds)

Extent: 18 boxes

Name of creator(s): Crooke | William | 1848-1923 | colonial administrator


Administrative/Biographical history:

Born, 1848; educated: Tipperary Grammar School; Trinity College, Dublin; Indian Civil Service, 1871-1895; Collector and Magistrate at various times of the districts of Saharanpur, Gorakhpur, Mirzapur in the United Provinces of Agra and Oudh; wrote prolifically on India, particularly on Ethnology, Anthropology and Folklore; died, 1923.


Scope and content/abstract:

Papers of William Crooke including:

MS 123
Collection of 27 Greek stories, manuscript notes, [c 1895].

MS 124
Collection of 118 Indian stories, told by various people; recorded and translated by W. Crooke and others, manuscript notes, [1895].

MS 125
Notes on religion, magic, rites, customs, prehistory, etc. with particular reference to India, [and] part of a manuscript of a new edition of Popular religion and folklore in northern India, [1890-1921].

MS 126
Papers, notes and correspondence on death, funeral and the soul, including material used in Religion and folklore of Northern India, and draft chapters and articles.

MS 127
Material for a glossary of Indian terms arranged in alphabetical order and supported by notes, references and correspondence.

MS 128
Correspondence between Crooke and John Murray, publishers. London and accounts relating to Things Indian, by Crooke, 1906-1923.

MS 129
Loose notes and references by Crooke including on Finger folklore; Hair and Swinging rites.

MS 130
Bibliographies, notes, papers, references and cuttings gathered by Crooke.

MS 131
Notes on folklore, magic, rites and customs, including prehistory, mainly India.

MS 132
Lecture notes and papers by Crooke, 1915-[1923].

MS 133
Draft of a history of Rajput society or of Rajputanas, [1908-1915].

MS 135
Notes for a lecture, 'Cults of Mother Goddess' and correspondence concerning cow worship and cattle veneration.

MS 136
Annotated typescript draft of book entitled, The folk-beliefs of the Homeric poems.

MS 137
Notes and correspondence pertaining to edition The Diary of John Fryer's voyage in the Hakluyt Society series and notes and correspondence pertaining to Fanny Parkes' 'Wanderings of a Pilgrim', 1908-1916.

MS 138
Papers relating to an entry in the Encyclopaedia Britannica by Crooke: 'Saints and martyrs (Indian)' including a glossary of saints and martyrs.

MS 139
Correspondence, including detailed description of native cloths and wooden and stone vessels, 1900-1921.


Language/scripts of material: English

System of arrangement:

As outlined in the scope and content.

Conditions governing access:

Appointments are necessary for all visits; please contact the archivist by email to arrange; a fee of 10 is payable by all visitors except Fellows and Members; membership details can be found on the RAI web site; access to material referring to the most recent thirty years is restricted; some material is very fragile and may not be available for view; a few items are of restricted or forbidden access.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Photocopies and scans for personal research only may be arranged at the discretion of the archivist; charges apply; in all cases forms governing use of copies must be signed; use of digital cameras is not allowed.

Physical characteristics:

Finding aids:

Detailed catalogue available in the reading room.


Appraisal, destruction and scheduling information:


Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Presented by Mr J.E. Crooke, 11 Mar. 1955.


Existence and location of originals:

Existence and location of copies:

Related material:

The papers of John Murray are held in the National Library of Scotland.

Publication note:

MS 127: Some of the material appears in Hobson-Jobson: a glossary of colloquial Anglo-Indian terms and phrases and of kindred terms; new edition; by Sir Henry Yule and Arthur Coke Burnell; edited by William Crooke. (London, John Murray, 1903.

MS 128: Things Indian: being discursive notes on various subjects connected with India by William Crooke, (London, John Murray, 1906)

MS 137: 'The Diary of John Fryer's voyage' was originally published as A new account of East India and Persia in 8 letters, being 9 years' travels begun in 1672 and finished 1681; by John Fryer, (London, Richard Chiswell, 1698). It was reissued under the same title but with the addition of 'notes and introductions by William Crooke' and published in 3 volumes, 1909-15 in London as the Hakluyt Society 2nd series, nos.19-20, 39.



Archivist's note: Entry compiled by Sarah Drewery.
Sources: Obit: Man, Vol. 24, (Jan., 1924), pp. 6-7

Rules or conventions: Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions: Sep 2008

Death | Life cycle
Folklore | Cultural heritage
Funerals | Civil ceremonies | Ceremonies
Lectures (teaching method) | Teaching methods
Magic | Mysticism
Saints | Religious groups
Intangible cultural heritage

Personal names
Crooke | William | 1848-1923 | colonial administrator

Corporate names

Greece | Western Europe | Europe
Rajasthan | India | South Asia