ELIAS, NEY (1844–1897), British explorer. Ney was born in Kent, the son of a Jewish merchant who converted to Christianity when he was a child. In 1892 he journeyed from Peking (Beijing) across the Gobi Desert by a hitherto unexplored route to St. Petersburg – a feat for which he received the gold medal of the Royal Geographical Society. He then traveled for the Indian government and in 1885 made an expedition through Central Asia. Elias defined the boundaries (1889–90) between what became Thailand and Burma. His books include A Visit to the Valley of Sheuli (1876) and The Tarikh-i-Rashidi (1895), a history of the Moghuls.
odnb online; G.R. Morgan, Ney Elias: Explorer and Envoy Extraordinary in High Asia (1971).