« PrécédentContinuer »
more firmly attached to it, and more concerned for its interests, than we are : in a qualified way, you will understand me.
'I wrote you word that I had sent for a Bootan Moonshi, but he is not yet arrived. The Bootan people have no caste; neither have the Rajemal Hill people, which hills are inhabited by a people of a very different appearance, habits, language, and religion from the Hindus. These hills are situated about thirty miles from Malda, to the N. E. of us, and Bootan about eighty or a hundred miles to the northward of us. I wish, with all my soul, that three or four young men and their families were settled among the Bootan people, and four on Rajemal Hills. Dr. Coke talked of sending missionaries there; and if he did, we should be bound to help them all in our power. At present, indeed, we have but maintenance for ourselves, for the indigo was almost all drowned by the flood of last year: otherwise, we had agreed together to lay out about £300 of our profits in printing the gospel, in such parts as are ready; and other large sums we had both appropriated to similar purposes. Indeed, it is possible that one good season would enable me to pay all my debts, and furnish me with overplus. When I am out of debt, however, I intend to have less to do with indigo than I have now, for the sake of the work of the mission. I was obliged to borrow £100 last month to send to a lawyer, who perhaps had put me in gaol before now, if I had not been in my present connexion and circumstances :
being driven by my creditors, whose patience is worn out, he might have done so; but I must acknowledge the great civility the Calcutta lawyers have constantly shown me, and civility seems an expression hardly good enough for them. I praise God, I am out of gaol; and I should have praised him more, perhaps, if I had been in it.'
LETTERS TO MR. FULLER-FEMALE AGENCY-LETTER TO MR. SUTCLIFF-LETTER
FROM MR. FOUNTAIN TO MR. FULLER--LETTER FROM THE SAME TO THE SOCIETY-LETTER FROM THE SAME TO MR. SMITH, OF EAGLE STREET, LONDON-LETTERS FROM MR. CAREY TO HIS SISTERS-LETTER TO MR. FULLER.
To Mr. FULLER.
* Mudnabatty, June 17, 1796. · MY VERY DEAR BROTHER,
“A few days ago I received yours and brother Pearce's, of August last, which gave me very great pleasure ; and, could I possibly give you reciprocal pleasure, by relating the success of the gospel, my heart would rejoice; but, instead of success, we have to lament appearances being more against us than they were. I have been forced, for the honour of the gospel, to discharge the Moonshi, who, though not guilty of that want of fidelity which both Mr. Grant and Mr. Udney have charged him with, was yet guilty of a crime which required this step, considering the profession he had made of the gospel. The discouragement arising from this circumstance is not small, as he is certainly a man of the very best natural abilities that I have ever found among the natives, and being well acquainted with the phraseology of scripture, was peculiarly fitted to assist in
the translation; but I have now no hope of him. The translation is going on, though more slowly than when he was here. However, almost all the Pentateuch and the New Testament are now completed. I have a young Pundit with me now, who, I hope, will prove useful, though I yet see nothing promising with respect to the great point of all.
You very encouragingly tell us not to faint, if we see no fruit yet. I hope and trust we shall not, and hope you also will be kept from discouragement on our account. I feel very much, lest the friends of religion should faint at our want of success; and, by the doubts, &c., which I find have been plentiful, on account of our engaging in business, I fear some such discouragement has already taken place. I hardly think it worth while to notice the slander, that we are become slave-drivers; but observe, that there are no slaves allowed in this country. The inhabitants are as free as in England, for what I see, and are paid their full earnings: indeed, were it refused, the English laws would oblige to it. But Mr. G-'s opposition to the work I think abominable: if any one wounds Mr. Thomas, he wounds me; and when this man answers every inquiry with “ I could say— but'-or, ‘I say nothing about Mr. T., because I shall be thought prejudiced ;' this is wounding his character deeper by a half-silence than he could possibly do by the most direct accusation. The fact is this, as can be proved by a long correspondence between him and Mr. T., now in preservation, that Mr. T. left a much more lucrative employment, and the society of his family, at Mr. G.'s desire, to preach the gospel among the natives; who afterwards, because he would not conform to his peremptory dictates, in matters which he could not conscientiously do, cut off all his supplies, and left him to shift for himself in a foreign land, and is now, by inuendoes, ruining his character. I feel nothing at what he says of my credulity and sanguineness. I may have thought better of the natives of this country at my first coming than I find a more intimate acquaintance with them will warrant, and I certainly expected more success than has attended us at present. But I wrote the warm effusions of my
own heart at the moment to friends, not dreaming of the severity of criticism being spent upon it ; and so I write now, and I believe always shall. I make it a point to think well of a person, till I see sufficient reason to alter my opinion. I had seen only flattering appearances then, and on the basis of those appearances I wrote. It does not belong to me to vindicate Capt. Christmas. I did not know or inquire whether he was a Dane or an Englishman ; but if it were as Mr. G. says, I think he took a lawful method to trade where the English law forbade him to trade as an Englishman; but I believe he had a station in the Danish army or navy, prior to his naturalization, and was naturalized on that account: but I am not sure.
• Mr. T. and I are men, and fallible ; but we can only desert the work of preaching the word of life to the Hindus with our lives, and are determined, through grace, to hold on, though our discouragements were a thousand times greater than they are.