Mohini Chatterjee

Other names: 

Mohini Chatterji

Country of birth: 
Dates of time spent in Britain: 



Mohini Chatterjee was an Indian Theosophist, who was sent to London in 1884 with Colonel Olcott. He was a favourite among Theosophical circles in London. Mohini Chatterjee visited Dublin in 1885 and was a deep influence on W. B. Yeats. Yeats wrote a poem entitled 'Mohini Chatterjee'.

In late 1885, Mohini Chatterjee was involved in scandal with female Theosophists. Letters from H. P. Blavatsky to the Sinnetts reveal her impression that European ladies were intent on seducing the Indian. The case came to public attention when one of the women, in response to Blavatsky's criticisms, intended to publicize letters written to her by Mohini Chatterjee. A truce between the woman and Blavatksy was arranged by 1887. 

Although he lost touch with Yeats and George Russell (AE) upon his return to India, they believed he was a lawyer in Bombay at the turn of the century. According to Harbans Rai Bachchan, the last heard of Mohini Chatterjee was that he was a blind old man, living in London with his daughter, in the early 1930s.

Published works: 

History as a Science (London: Thornton Butterworth, 1927)

Theories in Comparative Mythology and Questions and Answers (Adyar: Theosophical Publishing House, 1935)

Contributions to periodicals: 

Transactions of the London Lodge of the Theosophical Society. See June 1884, January 1885, December 1995 and June 1886.

Dublin University Review (May 1886)


See poem 'Mohini Chatterjee' by William Butler Yeats.

Dublin University Review, August 1885, p. 66 (for anticipated arrival of Mohini Chatterjee to Dublin)

W. B. Yeats, 'The Way of Wisdom', The Speaker, 14 April 1900, pp. 40-1

Secondary works: 

Bachchan, Harbans Rai, W. B. Yeats and Occultism: A Study of his Works in Relation to Indian Lore, the Cabbala, Swedenborg, Boehme and Theosophy (London: Books from India Ltd, 1976)

Sri, P. S., 'Yeats and Mohini Chatterjee' in Warwick Gould (ed.) Yeats Annual No. 11 (Basingstoke: Macmillan, 1995), pp. 61-76

The Letters of H. P. Blavatsky to A. P. Sinnett and other Miscellaneous Letters, transcribed, compiled and with an introduction by A. T. Barker (London T. Fisher Unwin, 1925)

The Mahatma Letters: To A. P. Sinnett from the Mahatmas M & K. H., transcribed, compiled and with an introduction by A. T. Barker (London: T. Fisher Unwin, 1923)