George Perkins, an American scholar, born in Woodstock, Vt., March 17, 1801. He graduated at Dartmouth college in 1820, and then removed to Burlington, Vt., where he studied law and was admitted to the bar. In 1835 he was elected a member of the supreme executive council of Vermont, and in 1842 became a representative in congress, retaining his seat in that body by successive re-elections till 1849, when he was commissioned by President Taylor as minister resident at Constantinople, which office he held for four years. In 1852 he was sent on a special mission to Greece. During his residence abroad he travelled extensively in the East and in Europe, passing some time in Denmark, Sweden, and Norway, where he has long been recognized as a leading Scandinavian scholar. On his return from Europe in 1853 he was appointed one of the commissioners to rebuild the state house at Montpelier, which was burned in January, 1857, and served as railroad commissioner for Vermont for two years (1857-'!)). In 1857 he was appointed by the governor of Vermont to make a report to the legislature in regard to the artificial propagation of fishes. In 18G0 he received the degree of LL. D. from Dartmouth college.
In 1801 he was appointed minister to Italy, a post which he still holds (1875). Besides numerous addresses and speeches, and contributions to periodicals, he has published a " Compendious Grammar of the Old Northern or Icelandic Language, compiled and translated from the Grammar of Bask "(Burlington, 1838); " The Camel, his Organization, Habits, and Uses, considered with reference to his Introduction into the United States " (Boston, 1850); " Lectures on the English Language" (New York, 18G1; originally delivered "in 1859 in the postgraduate course of Columbia college, New York), in which he "aimed to excite a more i general interest among educated men and women in the history and essential character of their native tongue, and to recommend the study of the English language in its earlier literary monuments rather than through the medium of grammars and linguistic treatises;" "Origin and History of the English Language " (New York, 1862); and "Man and Nature" (New York, 1864). This, with numerous corrections by the author, was translated into Italian (Florence, 1870), and afterward almost entirely rewritten and republished under the title, " The Earth, as modified by Human Action " (New York, 1874).
Caroline (Ckane), wife of the preceding, born in Berkley, Mass., Dec. 1, 1816. She was married in 1838. Her published productions are: "The llallig, or the Sheepfold in the Waters," translated from the German of Biernatzki, with a biographical sketch of the author (Boston, 1857); and "Wolfe of the Knoll and otluer Poems " (New York, 1860).