Regrets to inform Wallace he was unable to translate a letter written in Malay in Jawi script that Wallace had sent him.
A typical letter handwritten by author in English and signed by author.
An original MS
Pages with text: 3
Transcriber: Tannock, Wendy
Transcription date: March 10, 2015
Scrutiny: 10/03/2015 - Benny, Ruth;
Signed off: no
6 Huntingdon Road
3rd August 1905
I regret extremely that I have to return to you the letter you had kindly sent me undeciphered. I have not found any one even among native Malays who could read it and my own efforts notwithstanding the smattering of the language I have acquired have proved unsuccessful. The reason is that the letter has been written by an illiterate person who does not form his letters properly and spells incorrectly.
I have felt it a great honour to receive an autograph letter from you and I only wish I had been of service to you. Being an old pupil of Professor Huxley's1, I have long been an admirer your work and shall never forget the pleasure I derived from the perusal of your Malay Archipelago[.] []
Recently, through Mr Sharpe2 I had the pleasure of reading your book on Spiritualism.
Hoping I may some day have the honour of meeting you.
Believe me, | Yours truly | Syed Ali Bilgrami [signature]
1. Huxley, Thomas Henry (1825-1895). English biologist.
2. Sharpe, Richard Bowdler (1847-1909). English zoologist.
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