Upham, Edward (DNB00)

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UPHAM, EDWARD (1776–1834), bookseller and orientalist, the third son of Charles Upham (1739–1807), mayor of Exeter in 1796, was born at Exeter in 1776. He began life as a bookseller in Exeter; his brother John carried on a similar business in Bath. Upham became a member of the corporation, was sheriff in 1807, and mayor of Exeter in 1809. He retired and published a couple of oriental romances of no great merit, besides two works on Buddhism of more permanent value. One laborious and useful task was the completion of the ‘Index to the Rolls of Parliament, comprising the Petitions, Pleas, and Proceedings of Parliament (A.D. 1278–A.D. 1503),’ commenced by John Strachey and John Pridden [q. v.], and published London, 1832, folio. He was a member of the Royal Asiatic Society, and a fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London. Towards the end of his life he resided at Dawlish, where he was one of the charity trustees. He died at Bath on 24 Jan. 1834. He married, 25 Aug. 1801, Mary (d. 19 Oct. 1829), daughter of John Hoblyn, vicar of Newton St. Cyres and Padstow.

He wrote: 1. ‘Rameses: an Egyptian Tale, with Historical Notes of the Era of the Pharaohs,’ London, 1824, 3 vols. sm. 8vo (anonymous). 2. ‘Karmath: an Arabian Tale,’ London, 1827, sm. 8vo (anonymous). 3. ‘The History and Doctrine of Buddhism, popularly illustrated with Notices of the Kappooism or Demon Worship, and of the Bali, or Planetary Incantations of Ceylon, with 43 lithographic prints from original Singalese designs,’ London, 1829, folio. 4. ‘History of the Ottoman Empire from its Establishment till the year 1828,’ Edinburgh, 1829, 2 vols. sm. 8vo (Constable's Misc. vols. xl. and xli.). 5. ‘Historical and Descriptive Notices of China and its North-Western Dependencies,’ London, 1832 (from Gent. Mag. October 1832). 6. ‘The Mahávansi, the Rájá-Ratnácari, and the Rájá-vali, forming the Sacred and Historical Books of Ceylon; also a Collection of Tracts illustrative of the Doctrines and Literature of Buddhism, translated from the Singhalese,’ London, 1833, 3 vols. 8vo (edited by Upham).

[Information from Mr. W. U. Reynell-Upham; see also Gent. Mag. 1834, i. 336.]

H. R. T.