The Questions of King Milinda: Part 1 & 2 (Forgotten Books)

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9781605061139: The Questions of King Milinda: Part 1 & 2 (Forgotten Books)
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"Thomas William Rhys Davids (May 12, 1843 - December 27, 1922) was a British scholar of the Pali language and founder of the Pali Text Society.

T. W. Rhys Davids was well educated in Latin at school. Deciding on the Civil Service, he studied Sanskrit under A.F. Stenzler (a distinguished scholar at the University of Breslau, Germany, from 1833 till 1868). There, he earned money by teaching English. He returned to England in 1863 and, passing his civil service exams, he was posted to Ceylon. As Magistrate of Galle, a case was brought before Rhys Davids involving questions of ecclesiastical law, and he first came across Pali when a document in a strange language was brought up as evidence.

Davids attempted various methods to promote Theravada Buddhism and Pali scholarship in England. He actively lobbied the government (in co-operation with the Asiatic Society of Great Britain) to expand funding for the study of Indian languages and literature, advancing numerous arguments (in writing and in lectures) as to how this would strengthen imperial England's grip on India. His attempts to increase general public interest among Britons included numerous "Historical Lectures" and papers advancing a racialist theory of the common "Aryan" ethnicity of the people of England, Sri Lanka, and the Buddha's own tribe in times gone by. These views are comparable to the racial theories of Max Muller, but were used to a different purpose; Davids tried to establish that Britons would have a natural, 'racial' affinity with Buddhist doctrine. This aspect of Davids' career has been criticized." (Quote from wikipedia.org)

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