Morley, William Hook (DNB01)

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MORLEY, WILLIAM HOOK (1815–1860), orientalist and lawyer, born in 1815, second son of George Morley of the Inner Temple, distinguished himself in 1838 by discovering a missing manuscript of Rashīdudīn Jām‘ia Tawārīkh (see Elliot's History of India, iii. 10, and R.A.S.J. for 1839, vi. orig. ser.) He entered the Middle Temple on 12 Jan. 1838, was called to the bar in 1840 and in 1846, and in 1849–50 published a valuable digest of cases decided in the Supreme Courts of India (London, 2 vols. 8vo; new ser. vol. i. only, 1852). He was a trustee of the Royal Asiatic Society, and during the last year of his life also librarian; he published a ‘Catalogue of the Historical Manuscripts in the Arabic and Persian Languages’ in the possession of the society (London, 1854, 8vo). In 1856 he published a splendid folio, being a description of a planispheric astrolabe constructed for Shāh Sultan Husain Safavī. He also edited in 1848, for the Society for publishing Oriental texts, Mir Khwand's ‘History of the Atabeks of Syria and Persia,’ with a description of Atabek coins by William Sandys Vaux [q. v.]

His latter days were clouded by domestic distress, owing to the death of his wife. He died at 35 Brompton Square, London, on 21 May 1860.

[Brit. Mus. Cat.; Royal Asiatic Society's Journal, vol. xviii. orig. ser. vi.; Annual Report of May 1861, and Proceedings of the Numismatic Society of 21 June 1860; Numismatic Chronicle, xx. 34; Boase's Modern English Biography.]

H. B-e.