1881: Learning Sinhalese by the Ollendorff method

Carter, The Rev. Charles Henry An English and Singhalese Lesson Book on Ollendorff's System; designed to teach Singhalese through the medium of the English language. Colombo [Government Press] [1881?]
[Second edition?] pp.167, [1]. Bound in contemporary half calf, spine worn. Interleaved throughout with blanks on which there are copious manuscript notes. With ownership inscription 'Major A Ewing Colombo, 1881' and the bookplate of the House of the Sacred Mission, Kelham, Newark inside front cover, faint stamps on end-paper and title.

The first edition had been issued in 1860 with the imprint "Colombo: William Skeen, Government Printer, Ceylon, MDCCCLX", and the work was reprinted at least twice, in 1881 and 1900. The preface stresses the importance of learning Sinhalese from a native speaker: "Persons not in Ceylon, and who cannot have access to a native teacher, may, by careful study of the directions about pronunciation, commence the study of the language and make considerable progress in it; but it is desirable to have an intelligent native assistant at hand as much as possible." Carter arrived in Ceylon as a Baptist missionary in 1853 and reputedly learnt his Sinhalese from a 12-year old boy. In 1855 he became Pastor of the Church at Kandy.