Having presented the preceding considerations to the no-
tice of Lord Minto, Dr. Buchanan recurs to the subject of
his discourses on the Prophecies. He had at the opening of
his Memorial professed that he would willingly transmit
them to the perusal of the Governor General, and that he
should be happy to receive such observations on them, as
his Lordship's learning and candour might suggest. But,
adds Dr. Buchanan, ''^I now beg leave to submit to your
" Lordship's judgment, whether in the view of the temper
" of mind displayed above, it would be proper in me to sub-
" mit my compositions to the opinion and revision of the offi-
<â€¢ cers of your Lordship's government. I incline not toconi-
*< mit them to the hands of those officers from another consi-
" deration : it would be a bad precedent. I would not that
" it should be thought, that any where in the British domi-
*< nions there exists any thing like a civil inquisition into
" matters purely religious.
" It is nearly two months since I received the letter from
^< government on this matter, and I have not yet communi-
" cated my intentions. I now beg leave to inform your
<' Lordship, that I do not wish to give government any un-
<Â« necessary offence. I shall not publish the Prophecies.
'Â« At the same time I beg leave most respectfully to assure
Â«* your Lordship, that 1 am not in any way disappointe^l by
" the interference of government on this occasion. The sup-
<< posed suppression of the Christian prophecies has produ-
Â« ced the consequence that might be expected. The public
*Â« curiosity has been greatly excited to see these prophecies;
" and to draw the attention of men to the divine predictions
Â«â€¢ could be the only object I had in view, in noticing them in
368 MEMOIRS OF
** the course of my public ministry. Another consequence
" will probably be, the Prophecies will be translated into the
Â« languages of the East, and thus pave the way, as has
'Â« sometimes happened, for their own fulfilment."
Dr. Buchanan closed his Memorial with entreating Lord
Minto, in case any circumstance should afford a pretext for
renewing the attempt to suppress the translation of the Scrip-
tures, that the Chinese translation, in which, as its original
proposer and patron, he felt peculiarly interested, might at
least be spared; and without offering any farther evidence or
explanation of the facts asserted in his letter, which his Lord-
ship might require. This offer, however, Lord Minto did
not condescend to accept. He did not even honour Dr. Bu-
chanan with a single word of reply. Instead of considering
the Memorial as a communication intended to inform his
Lordship on subjects with which he-was likely to be unac-
quainted, he viewed it as disrespectful to his government,
and transmitted it by the very fleet which conveyed Dr.
Buchanan himself to England, to the Court of Directors,
accompanied by a commentary, of which Dr. Buchanan re-
mained perfectly ignorant till some years afterwards; when,
with many other documents relative to Christianity in India,
it was laid upon the table of the House of Commons. It then
attracted his notice, and called forth some remarks, which
will be better considered, when we arrive, in the course of
this narrative, at the period of their publication. The Ben-
gal government, however, not having thought proper to pay
any attention to his Memorial, Dr. Buchanan deemed it to
be his duty to transmit a copy of it to the Court of Directors,
which he did immediately before his departure from Calcut-
ta, accompanied by a letter, in which he expressed his hope,
that^ome general principles on the comparative impor-
tance of religion in political relations in India, might be es-
tablished at home, and transmitted to our eastern govern-
ment for their guidance. Dr. Buchanan concluded his ad-
dress to the Honourable Court, by recalling to their notice
the solemn charge which he had received about eleven years
since from their chairman, the late Sir Stephen Lushington,
DR. BUCHANAN. 369
the tenor of which has been already stated. '* In obedience
Â«< to these instructions/' observes Dr. Buchanan, ** I have
" devoted myself much to the advancement of the Cliristian
" religion, and of useful learning, since my arrival in India;
" using such means'as I was possessed of, and directing the
" opportunities which have "offered, to the accomplishment
*^ of that object. I am yet sensible that I have fulfilled very
"imperfectly the injunctions of your Honourable Court. It
** suffices, however, for my own satisfaction, if what I have
Â« done, has been well done; that is, with honesty of purpose,
" and with the sanction of truth. In my exhibition of the
*^ religious and moral state of British India, I might have
*< palliated the fact, and presented a fair picture, where
" there was nothing but deformity. But in so doing, I
^' should not have done honour to the spirit of the admoni-
" tions of your venerable chairman, now deceased. And
" however grateful it may be for the present moment to
<< suppress painful truths, yet as my labours had chiefly re-
*' ference to the benefit of times to come, I should not, by
"such means,, have conciliated the respect of your illustri-
" ous body twenty years hence."
Under these impressions, Dr. Buchanan requested that
the Court would be pleased to investigate fully his proceed-
ings, with respect to the promotion of Christianity in India,
that the Company at large might be enabled justly to appre-
ciate them ; and that he might be encouraged (if it should
appear that encouragement were due) to prosecute an un-
dertaking which seemed, he said, to have commanded the
applause of all good men, and which had certainly commen-
ced with omens of considerable success.
The preceding letter to the Court of Directors was not
published with the Memorial to the government of Bengal,
nor docs it seem to have been noticed by the Court. Nei-
ther of those addresses, however, though unacknowledged
at the time, was unproductive of effect. In Bengal, a more
favourable disposition on the part of the government, towards
the promotion of Christianity, shortly afterwards appeared;
and the reply of the Court of Directors to the representa-
tions of the Governor General in council, though not friend-
ly to Dr. Buchanan, was, as we shall hereafter perceive,
strongly marked by those enlightened and liberal views,
which he had been so anxious to sec established for the gui-
dance of our Indian governments. The favourable change
which took place in the conduct of the Bengal government
towards the mission at Serampore, is, however, chiefly to be
ascribed to the Memorial presented by the missionaries
themselves to the Governor General in council ; which,
when published a few years afterwards in this country, ex-
cited general admiration.
The painful transaction which has now been detailed was
nearly the last of a public nature in which Dr. Buchanan
was engaged in Calcutta. The time was now approaching
for his second and final departure from that city. Accord-
ingly, in the month of November, he preached his farewell
sermon to the congregation at the mission church from the
words of St. Paul to the Philippians, chap. i. 27. /< Only let
" your conversation be as it becometh the Gospel of Christ :
â™¦* that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may
Â« hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with
*> one mind, striving together for the faith of the Gospel."
From this appropriate and interesting passage, Dr. Bu-
chanan delivered a discoui'se remarkable for the importance
of the practical truths which it enforced. After an intro-
ductory view of the origin and progress of the Church at
Philippi, Dr. Buchanan considered the two particulars, of
which the parting request of the Apostle to his favourite
converts consists. The fust respects the holy practice
which they were exhorted to maintain.
*< Without a highly moral conversation," observed Dr.
Buciianan, " a congregation of Christians cannot be said to
'^ have substance or being; for faith without works is dead.
*< Unless the world see something particular in your works,
Â« they will give you no credit for your faith; or rather, they
<Â« will not care what your faith may be. In such circum-
" stances, your faith will give them no trouble. But when
Â« < wonderful works' appear, they will begin to ask what
DR. BUCHANAN. 371
<* power bath produced them.' In this very Epistle, the
Apostle calls the Christians at Philippi, < the. sons of God,'
" and the * lights of the world ;' and he expresses his hope,
" thai their conduct would be correspondent with these ho-
<* ble and distinguishing appellations."
"Now," continues Dr. Buchanan, <*when this light shi-
<Â« neth to the world, even the light of a holy life and conver-
" sation, it will be manifested by these two circumstances.
*< First,- it will not be agreeable to some. And, secondly,
<* some will misrepresent your motives, or attacJi to your
*Â« conduct an evil name ; accusing you of hypocrisy, or of
" unnecessary strictness. And if no man Â£illege any thing
" of this kind against you, if the worst of men make no dero-
<^ gatory remark on your. conduct, then may you doubt whe-
*'ther you are walking in the steps of the faithful, servants
*< of Christ. They all \vere marked out by the world, as
*^ being in a greater or less .degree singular and peculiar in
â€¢' their conduct, as persons swayed by other principles, and
<Â« subject to other laws. If these things be so, you will per-
Â«* ceive how little concerned you ought to be about the praise
^* of man, or the honour which cometh from the world."
Dr. Buchanan then proceeded to the second .part of the
Apostle's exhortation; and in urging the duty of '' striving
" for the faith of the Gospel," he observed, <* This will ap-
<Â« pear strange to nominal Christians, both preachers and
â€¢Â« hearers. But when once a man's heart comes under the
Â«â€¢ influence of the grace of God, he will discover (perhaps in
" old age for the first time) that it is his duty, and it will be
" his pleasure, to promote the faith of the Gospel, by every
" way; by his means, by his influence, by his exhortation,
" by his example. Every true disciple of Christ, however
Â« humble his situation, or peculiar his circumstances, will
** find opportunities of doing something for the faith of the
<* Gospel. And, indeed, the^Jkor often enjoy means of use-
*' fulness, which, from many causes, are denied to their su-
Dr. Buchanan next directed the attention of his hearers to â€¢
the. Apostle's rule for the successful pursuit of this great ob-
37^ MEMOIRS OF
ject, *< that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind â€” that
<' they should preserve unity ; unity in the faith, and in the
<< Church." The following passage, relative to this impor-
tant point, displays considerable acuteness of observation.
*< You will generally observe in the present day, that new
" opinions concerning forms and doctrine are chiefly intro-
Â« duced by men wlio have had little learning in their youth;
" so that when in advanced life they begin to be serious and
*< to acquire knowledge, the novelty flatters their understan-
" dings for a time, and leads them to adopt new systems, as
" they acquire new knowledge. This is very natural.
Â« Whereas those in whom serious piety and sound learning
Â« have united in early life, are seldom subject to such chan-
" ges. But the unsettled man is designated by St. Paul
Â« under the appellation of a â€¢ novice,' whatever his age may
" be ; one who being lifted up for a time in his own conceit,
<* gradually loses his reputation, or perhaps has a fall in the
<* face of the church. And when his pride has been thus
" humbled, he generally returns to meekness of conduct and
'Â« sobriety of speech."
Dr. Buchanan noticed, in the third place, the nature of
that faith for which Christians ought to strive.
*< With respect to tliis," he observed, <Â« it is not necessa-
Â«* ry for me now to declare it. It hath often been described
"to you from this place, even that ' faith which was once
Â« delivered unto the saints;' and which hath descended
'Â« from age to age, like a pure stream of the water of life^
*< gladdening the hearts of men, and nourishing their souls
<^ unto everlasting life. Amongst yourselves, have there
<< been some, who drank of it deeply, and have now passed
<< away into glory ; good and holy persons, who bequeathed
" to you an illustrious testimony, and pointed out to you the
^< Â« true way.' These all died|ui faith, and now inherit the
^< promises. These are your^loud of witnesses ;' that you
<* should Â« run with patience the race that is set before you.'
*â€¢ Tiiese once, like some of you now, endured suff*cring for
" conscience sake, some trouble of body, or some distress of
" mind. But all was sanctified to them, as it will be to you ;
DR. BUCHANAN. 373
â€¢Â»' they endured unto the end, and their names shall he had in
â€¢< everlasting remembrance."
The sermon was concluded by a faithful and solemn ex-
hortation to the young and to the old, to those who doubted
as to "the true way," to the sinner and the saint, to strive
to obtain, and, having obtained, to adorn and recommend the
faith of the Gospel. *â€¢ It only remains," added Dr. Bu-
chanan, <* that I implore the solemn benediction of God on
â€¢* this congregation.
** I pray, that the word of Christ may * run and be glori-
*< fied' amongst you ; that from this place, as from a foun-
" tain, streams of truth may flow far and wide ; that you
â€¢Â« may be ever blessed with wise and learned instructors,
â€¢< < able ministers of the New Testament,' who shall take
<< delight in dispensing the word of life, and in tending the
" flock committed to their care ; and finally, that the honour
â€¢< of your church may ever be preserved pure from any stain,
^' that ye may uphold a conduct ' blameless and harmless,'
" as examples to men, as Â« the lights of the world ;' striving
<Â« together with one mind and in one spirit, for the faith of
â€¢'â€¢ the Gospel."
Such was the simple but impressive strain in which Dr.
Buchanan took leave of the congregation which contained
the greater proportion of religious persons in Calcutta. His
farewell at the Presidency church was probably of a differ-
ent nature, though characterized by the same pastoral fidel-
ity and practical wisdom, as that which we have just ob-
served. There were, doubtless, some in each congregation
from whom he would regret to be separated, and many who
would lament his departure. Mr. Brown would particularly
feel the loss of his able and affectionate coadjutor and friend,
with whom he had taken Â«* sweet counsel" in the house of
God, and had shared the burthen and the heat of many a
laborious day. Of the sentiments entertained by this excel-
lent man respecting his learned and valuable colleague, the
following brief extract from a confidential letter to his bro-
ther, written just as Dr. Buchanan was on the eve of his de
parture from Calcutta, will be a sufficient testimonv.
374 MEMOIRS OF
^Â« You ask me," says Mr. Brown, *^ if Dr. Buchanan is
'* my friend ? I answer, I know no man in the world who
" excels him in useful purpose, or deserves my friendship
<^ more. Perhaps there is no man in the world who loves
<' him so much as I do ; because no man knows him so well.
â™¦< Furtlier, no man I believe in the world would do me ser-
â€¢' vice like him. We have lived together in the closest inti-
" macy ten years, without a shade of difference in sentiment,
" political or religious. It is needless to add, without a jar
<< in word or deed. He is the man to do good in the earth,
" and worthy of being Metropolitan of the East."
The private and unaffected nature of the letter from which
the preceding passage is extracted, the well known simpli-
city and integrity of the writcr^s character, and the perfect
competency of his testimony, render this warm and ener-
getic tribute to the merit of his friend peculiarly valuable.
To separate from such a colleague must have been a subject
of sincere regret to him. But, with this and a few other
exceptions, Dr. Buchanan's ties to India were neither strong
nor numerous. The society of Calcutta is necessarily fluc-
tuating. One of the most important branches of his em-
ployment no longer existed; he had laid the foundation of a
great work for the promotion of Christianity in India, which
he could in future more advantageously forward and defend
in his native country ; and thither he felt attracted by the
associations of early and maturer life, by filial duty, and pa-
ternal affection. For this return, therefore, after making a
variety of arrangements to ensure the continuance of the
works carrying on under what he considered to be the
Â«' Christian Institution," more particularly of the Chinese
class at Serampore, he at length prepared.
On the 27th of November; Dr. Buclianan left Calcutta,
and reached Fulta the next day ; and from this place he
wrote to Colonel Sandys as follows.
Â« Dear Sandys,
â€¢^ I am thus far on my way to Europe. I sail in the Ba-
â€¢â€¢' retto to Goa, to look into the inquisition there, and exa-
'< mine the libraries. Thence I proceed to Bombay.
DR. BUCHANAN. 375
<Â« A few days ago I received your letter of the 28th of
â€¢< May 1807, dated from Northwold, containing the signa-
Â« tures of the little girls. They write very well, and have
" made a flattering progress in their education. I am much
Â«Â« obliged to you for your particular account of the two chil-
Â«Â« dren, which is very correct, I believe, and very pleasing.
" Being long estranged from them, and hearing none con-
Â« verse about them, I seldom think of them now compara-
<^ tively. But when we meet again, I suppose we shall fall
" in love.
" You observed in some of your late letters that you heard
Â« I was likely to be married again. It so happens, that I
" have not once thought of it. It is possible that I may
<* marry some time after my arrival in England. But yet I
<^ would avoid it, for some reasons. It is a subject I think
" not of.
" Instead of love and marriage, I am engaged in war and
*Â« fightings. I have been obliged to address this government
" publicly on its hostility to religion and to its progress in
" India. All Calcutta wondered what step government
" would take. In the midst of this strange scene, I paid a
'' farewell visit to them all, and left every creature from the
'* Governor General to the pilots, on good terms.
*Â« I have now finished my labours, and pray that God may
" bless them.
<Â« I have been down here for eight days, waiting the des-
Â« patch of the ship. The Calcutta people have not been
" uninterested in my late contention with the government ;
" and I hear some of them have called a ship by my name,
<Â« since I came down here. The < Christian Institution in
" the East' is unknown in Calcutta to this hour, though aC-
'Â« tive in its operation.
*< Yours affectionately,
<* C. Buchanan."
The ship in which Dr. Buchanan sailed left Saugor on
the 9th of December; but no memorial of his voyage occurs
until the 23d of that month, when he wrote to Mr. Brown
as follows, from Coiumbo, in the island of Ceylon,
370 MEMOIRS OF
** Ceylon again ! In crossing the Gulf of Manaar, we enÂ»
" countered a gale, and put into Columbo. I had requested
" the captain to touch here when I left Calcutta ; and now
" he was obliged of necessity. I have been well on board,
Â« and well treated. Many causes for thankfulness, as usual.
Â« Tlie Adele was taken by the Russel the day before we came
Â« up to her, and we had parted convoy. In the Gulf of Ma-
" naar, we were about to throw over our cargo, when the
*< gale abated.
Â« On my arrival here, many of the chief persons waited
â™¦Â« on me. From my having touched last year at so many
â€¢Â« Dutch settlements, I found all the families knew me. I
" have only been here three days, having arrived on Mon-
" day last, and the ship proceeds on her voyage on Friday.
*< I have some thoughts of letting her go, and following at
" my leisure ; for I find there is something for me here to
Â« do. What a field for English, Dutch, and Cingalese
" preachers in this fertile and renowned land !
<* I propose to proceed straight to Cochin from this place.
<Â« Sir James Mackintosh is on the Malabar coast, I hear,
<< with his family. Two Bombay civil servants now here
" wish me to travel by land from Cochin to Goa. They have
<* been judges and collectors for fourteen years on that coast,
" and allege they know more about the Christians than any
*Â« other persons in India. They complain much of the undue
*' influence of Goa, exercised sometimes cruelly on all Chris-
Â«Â« tians who are not Catholics. Mr. B. carries me out to-
" day to his country house, to visit some of the Cingalese
Â« Christian churches.
" My affectionate regards to all your family."
By the date of his next letter. Dr. Buchanan appears to ^
have left the Barctto, in wliich he originally embarked from
Calcutta, and to have exchanged that ship for the Canton,
from which, on the 26th of December, he thus wrote off Co-
chin to Coloni'l Macaulay.
" I had flattered myself with the hope of being landed
Â»Â« here, but the commander of the ship cannot \yait, and I
DR. BUCHANAN. 37^
â€¢â€¢ am disappointed. He has eni^aged to put me down at Goa,
Â«* where I propose to remain some time, an?^ from whrnce I
'* shall write to yo3i particularly. I left Calcutta on the 8th
** inst. and touched at Columho, where I staid some days,
'Â« and ^)und flatterins; assurances- of support in our evange-
Â«Â« lizing plans for that i :| ;nd. There is less prejudice there
"than in the Company's settlements. This is the third time
"that r have visited Ceylon; so that the people begin to
<* think I have some serious design against them.
" In my last I believe I informed you that I was standing
"i?i the breach, I have now the pleasure to announce that
Â« the battle has been fought. Long consultations were held
" how to proceed. It was at last decreed, that I should be
" permitted to depart in peace.
" I have the copy of the Malayalim Scriptures with me,
" and mean to print when at Bombay : five thousand copies
" will suffice for a beginning, I suppose.
" I left Misrahi, my Jew, in Calcutta, with his own con-
"sent. I have advanced him in the whole a thousand ru-
" pees ; so I suppose he will trade there.
"I hope to see you before I leave India; but I do not
â€¢< know at this moment where or how. May all our resolves
" and purposes be acceptable to the Divine will !
" Mr. Johnston, Judge at Col umbo, will furnish me with
Â« some important official documents relating to the state of
"Christianity in that island. The Governor was absent ;
Â«< but Major Maitland (Lord Lauderdale's son) came to in-
" form me, that he would return in two days, if I would stay
<Â« to see him. I could not stay ; but I communicated to him,
" that if he would give to the Cingalese translation of the
" Scriptures his countenance, I would give moneij; and Judge
<' Johnston would find instruments. Mr. J. is an excellent
" Cingalese scholar himself."
Notwithstanding the disappointment of which Dr. Bu-
chanan expressed his expectation at the commencement of
the preceding letter, we find him two days afterwards
safely landed at Cochin, and under the roof of his friend.
Colonel Maeaulay. He thus writes to Mr. Brown.
378 MEMOIRS OF
"Cochin, 28th Dec. 1807.
*< On the 24th, Christmas-eve, we left Columbo, crossed
*< the Gulph of Manaar on Christmas-day, and arrived here
'< on the 27th, yesterday. I found all my Jews and Chris-
** tians in fine health and spirits, and highly gratified at my
"- unexpected arrival. I reside with Colonel Macaulay.
â™¦< After passing some time in these regions, he accompanies
** me up the coast, by land, through all the Christian terri-
** tories, as far as Cananore, perhaps Mangalore, whence I
â€¢< proceed by sea to Goa.
Â« The Jews have lately had a meeting about the prophe-
â™¦* cies. And I am about to call another Sanhedrim on the
** subject before I go. It is a strange event.
" I am happy I have visited this place a second time.