1984 - Professor Sukumar Sen

Scope and Content

The series contains correspondence regarding the conferment of the Medal; correspondence regarding purchase of the Medal; Newspaper cuttings; Correspondence from Dr Ahamad Hussain about applying to receive the Medal; and family correpsondence.

Administrative / Biographical History

Professor Sukumar Sen was born in 1900 in Gotan, near Shyamsundar in the Purba Bardhaman district. He obtained an F.A. in 1919 from Burdwan Raj College, then affiliated with the University of Calcutta. He received a divisional scholarship and earned first class honours in Sanskrit from the Government Sanskrit College in 1921. He studied Comparative Linguistics in Kolkata, scoring the highest marks in 1923. He received a Premchand Roychand Scholarship and a PhD degree. He joined the University of Calcutta as a lecturer in 1930, where he served as a professor for thirty four years. He became the second Khaira Professor in the Department of Comparative Philology. His interests were in Bengali linguistics but he was also well versed in Pāli, Prakrit and Sanskrit. He died in 1992.


The material was divided into sub-series thus:

  • RAS TGM/31/1 - Correspondence regarding Conferment of the Medal
  • RAS TGM/31/2 - Correspondence regarding Purchase of the Medal
  • RAS TGM/31/3 - Newspaper Cuttings
  • RAS TGM/31/4 - Family Correspondence
  • RAS TGM/31/5 - Correspondence with Dr Ahamad Hussain

Separated Material

In the Council Minutes for 13 October 1983 it was recorded that it was agreed that the President should nominate a Committee for the Gold Medal, this would be confirmed at the December meeting and they would be expected to report back in the February meeting. The Minutes for 8 December 1983 confirm that a Committee had been nominated. In the Minutes for 9 February 1984 the Council approved the Committee's selection of Professor Sukumar Sen of Calcutta. It was decided to ask him to become an Honorary Member and to ask the British High Commissioner in India to present the award.

In the Report of the Anniversary Meeting in the Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society, 1984, p. 265, it was recorded that the Society's Triennial Gold Medal had been awarded to Professor SuKumar Sen for his outstanding contribution to the study of Bengali language, literature and religion and of Sanskrit literature of eastern India. The British Deputy High Commissioner had presented the Medal in Calcutta on 22 August. Professor Sen was also elected an Honorary Member.