Genesis of the name Prinseps

The name prinseps stems from two parallel tracks - both bearing immense significance to Indian history (and therefore to collectibles) . The first being ..

Indian Princely States

The first from what is commonly referred to as Indian Princely states. British India was a loosely defined term and included close to a thousand princely states , kingdoms, residencies, etc that were independently governed but under the suzerainty of the British administration - a few large states like Gwalior, Jammu & Kashmir, Hyderabad and many smaller states like Bamra, Bhor, Rajpipla, and so on. At various points in time these princely states have had their own monetary system (coinage), their own banks, revenue systems & land records, and some even their own post offices and locally issued postage stamps. I have been a specialist collector of these very rare postage stamps of Indian Princely states for a couple of decades. For an introduction to philately please refer to my discovery of an un-documented issue (postage stamp) of the princely state of Jasdan.

Duttia Postage Stamps


and the second a multi-faceted individual , a cartographer, an artist in his own right, a numismatist - an indophile ..

James Prinsep

"James Prinsep (20 August 1799 – 22 April 1840) was an English scholar, orientalist and antiquary. He was the founding editor of the Journal of the Asiatic Society of Bengal and is best remembered for deciphering the Kharosthi and Brahmi scripts of ancient India. He studied, documented and illustrated many aspects of numismatics, metallurgy, meteorology apart from pursuing his career in India as an assay master at the mint in Benares." [1]

Prinseps Ghat In Calcutta

book on James Prinsep


Reference Credits
Losty, JP (2004). "Prinsep, James (1799–1840)". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Oxford University Press.
Wikipedia on James Prinsep

Image Credits
By Grentidez - Own work, CC0, Link
Hindoo Observatory at Benaras by James Prinsep