Association of British Orientalists

Scope and Content

These Papers include conference material, promotional material, and correspondence with the Royal Asiatic Society.

Administrative / Biographical History

The Association of British Orientalists existed to co-ordinate the activities of British orientalists and to co-operate with other agencies both in Britain and abroad to advance the diffusion of knowledge of Eastern civilizations. It produced an annual Bulletin of Oriental Studies and held conferences at intervals of not more than two years.
The Royal Asiatic Society of Great Britain and Ireland was founded by the eminent Sanskrit scholar Sir Henry Thomas Colebrooke on the 15th March 1823. It received its Royal Charter from King George IV on the 11th August 1824 'for the investigation of subjects connected with and for the encouragement of science, literature and the arts in relation to Asia'. It continues as a forum for those who are interested in the languages, cultures and history of Asia to meet and exchange ideas.


The material was arranged chronologically.

Access Information

Open. Please contact the archivist. The archive is open on Tuesdays and Fridays 10-5, and Thursdays 2-5. Access is to any researcher without appointment but it will help if an appointment is made via phone or email. Please bring photo ID.

Acquisition Information

The material is part of the institutional records of the Society from its dealings with other Societies.

Archivist's Note

The papers were catalogued by Nancy Charley, RAS Archivist, in 2019.

Conditions Governing Use

Digital photography (without flash) for research purposes may be permitted upon completion of a copyright declaration form, and with respect to current UK copyright law.

Custodial History

These papers were mainly produced by the Association of British Orientalists and sent to the Royal Asiatic Society in the course of its business.

Related Material

The Royal Asiatic Society Collections also hold "The development of oriental studies in British universities, 1947-1951 : reports delivered at the 5th Conference, 1951". Details can be found here.