James Hough.

The history of Christianity in India : from the commencement of the Christian era : second portion: comprising the history of protestant missions, 1706-1816 / by James Hough (Volume 5) online

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his family, and Mr Doran was left in charge of the
college, which prospered under his care. It were
premature here to give an account of his exertions
and success ; we will therefore close this decade
with a general view of the mission in the follow-
ing year. Mr Baker wrote that he considered it
to be in a more encouraging state than it had been
for a long time past, and that chiefly because the
attention of the missionaries was no longer greatly
occupied as, from unavoidable circumstances, it
formerly was, with secular concerns, but was di-
rected solely to their proper work. They were
now employed, he concludes, '' in printing and
circulating the Scriptures and religious books, in
teaching children, and in training young men
for the work of the ministry, who, we trust, will
become our helpers in the work of teaching and
preaching to their benighted countrymen."^

36. Allepie. — The favourable commencement of AUepie.
this mission, under the Rev. Thomas Norton, was
recorded in the last volume.^ In 1817, he esta
Wished a school for natives, on the plan of those at
Tranquebar, and soon had nearly fifty scholars, who
willingly attended, and some of them made a toler-

^ C. M. S. Keports, 2Gth, 27th, 28tli. Missionary Register
1827, pp. 600, 601.

3 C. M. S. Reports, 26th to 28th.

* B. X. c. vi. Also B. xiii. c. i. s. 27. Reached Allepie in


CHAP, able proficiency. He also opened an asylum for
^^^- orphans and destitute children, whom he boarded
and clothed. This establishment was supported
by local contributions, and it soon contained
twenty- six children. Both these schools suffered
for a while, from the apprehension that some evil
use was to be made of the children ; and the Ro-
manists fomented, if they did not awaken, this
fear. But, after some observation of Mr Norton's
proceedings, the alarm subsided, when the Romish
children attended in spite of their priests, and the
people seemed to be satisfied that nothing but the
benefit of their children was intended. The schools
rose rapidly in their favour, and before long the
applications for admission into the asylum ex-
ceeded the amount of the contributions. In 1819,
a third school was opened in a populous part of the
town, about a mile from the mission-house, in the
Great Bazaar, calculated to hold one hundred chil-
dren. All the scholars received Christian instruc-
tion, and many of them made satisfactory progress
in Scriptural knowledge ; but they still had to
encounter some opposition, especially from the
Romish Syrians, who met, however, with but par-
tial success.
Success 37. The church which, as we have seen, the

of the Travancore Government undertook to erect,^ was
mission. Qpg^g(^ Qj^ ^i^Q ][g^]^ Qf j^ly 18 19, and much at-
tracted the attention of the natives. It was a
substantial building, and would accommodate from
seven hundred to eight hundred persons. The

^ B, X. c. vi. It appears, however, that the Eannee of Tra-
vancore gave only the timher ; exclusive of which, the building
cost 4155 rupees : of which sum, 1500 rupees were raised by
subscription, 555 were contributed by Mr Norton, and the re-
maining 2100 were supplied by the Church Missionary Society.
C. M. S. Keport, 21st, p. 169.

IN INDIA : BOOK Xlll. 401

Moormen, who are numerous at this place, were
much attracted with the ten commandments, and
marked the opposition of the Romanists' worship
of images to the second commandment. A con-
gregation had been gradually forming in the mis-
sion-house, where Mr Norton performed public
worship, first in English, and afterwards, in 1818,
in Malayalim. This service was most acceptable
to the natives ; the Syrians and children joined
readily in the responses, and others listened with
attention. By the time the church was opened, a
congregation of two hundred, school children in-
cluded, was ready to be transferred to it. Mr
Norton preached three times on the Lord's day, as
he had done for some time past, twice in Malaya-
lim, and once in Enghsh ; he also estabhshed a
lecture on Thursday evenings, for the benefit of all
who understood English. In 1821, he added a
fourth service on Sunday, in Tamul, there being a
goodly number of Tamulians resident at Allepie, or
resorting thither for trade. This service was con-
ducted by a catechist from the Tamul country.

Mr Norton received much encouragement in his
labours, and, in 1821, had the gratification of bap-
tizing twelve adult converts and fourteen children
from idolatry, and of receiving three Romanists
into the Church. He had then eight regular com-
municants. In the following year he baptized two
more adults, and five children of Christian parents,
and admitted seven converts from Romish supersti-
tions into the Protestant communion.

'' On the free use of the Scriptures, Mr Norton
is unavoidably at issue with his Roman Catholic
neighbours, who manifest much hostility to his
plans. In the mean while, the power of the Scrip-
tures, under the influence of the Holy Spirit, con-
tinues to be manifested. A Hindoo youth in the
school, impressed by the Gospels which he was



CHAP, transcribing for Mr Norton, was removed by his
^^^^- relatives into the interior, but fled from their
violence, and took refuge in the Society's semi-
nary at Tinnevelly, where he was preparing for

Many similar instances might be given of the
converting influence of a simple perusal of the
Holy Scriptures among the natives. One other
case may be mentioned. It was that of a Roman-
ist, who had suffered much persecution in conse-
quence of his determination to join the Protestant
Church. At last the Bishop applied to the British
Resident of Travancore, requesting him to compel
Mr Norton to give up the man. Mr Norton, at
the Resident's request, sent him a full account of
the case. The young man also wrote to the Resi-
dent, stating that he had been in the mission
school more than four years ; that he had there
learned to read the Bible ; and that he could not
belong to a Church which would deprive him of
the only book that would teach him the way to
heaven. It is, perhaps, needless to say, that
the British Resident allowed no one to interfere
with the youth. There were several others in
the school who refused to give up reading the

Hitherto Mr Norton had laboured almost alone,
the Madras Committee being unable to comply with
his calls for help : but, in 1823, God raised up for
him two effective assistants. The Hindoo youth
just mentioned, who sought refuge at Palamcottah
from the persecution of his relatives, was baptized
by Mr Rhenius on Christmas day 1822. Return-
ing to Allepie on the following year, Mr Norton,
after a few months' trial, appointed him to act as

1 C. M. S. Report, 23d, pp. 1.^3, 154.



reader of the mission, in the bazaars and through
the vicinity. The other assistant was an East
Indian, who, though his father was an EngUshman,
had actually been brought up a heathen. After his
conversion, Mr Norton baptized him in April 1823,
when his heathen name, Appoo, was exchanged for
that of Daniel. Both these young men became
very useful to the mission, especially during Mr
Norton's absence from home.

Under all the circumstances of his situation, his
success was as great as could reasonably be ex-
pected. In 1825, his native congregations, Tamul
and Malayalim, numbered between fifty and sixty,
the English, consisting of East Indians, were thirty,
and the average number of communicants, four-
teen. There were one hundred and seventy-four
under instruction in the four schools, including the
asylum. The following is the moderate view which
Mr Norton took of his progress : — '' The work does
not succeed so rapidly as we could wish. We have
not those blessed visitations of Divine mercy and
displays of the power of Almighty grace, which our
brethren in Africa enjoy. But we know in whose
hands the work is ; and have reason to hope, that
the same gracious God will grant us also here the
outpouring of His Spirit from on high. We have
to be thankful that He does not altogether leave
his word without testimony. A small number of
souls have, I trust, been really benefited to their
everlasting welfare. There is no small degree of
reasoning and disputation about the Christian re-
ligion, in public places and in private families : this
is the case among all castes and descriptions of

These works were carried on in much affliction ;
and after the loss of his second wife, in 1826, he
returned to England, where he succeeded in awaken-
ing a special interest in behalf of his asylum. In



CHAP, the follo\Ying year he returned to his post^ and was

'_ spared many years to labour for the benefit of the

people around him.^
Cochin. 38. Cochin. — The Kev. Thomas Dawson^ whose

arrival at Madras in October 1816 was noticed in a
former volume/ was appointed to Cochin^ whither he
proceeded in the spring of 1817^ and arrived in a
precarious state of health. Prospects of usefulness
were opening upon him^ particularly among the
Jews, of whom there were about fifteen hundred
residing in the district. Sickness, however, pre-
vented much exertion, and compelled him to re-
turn to England in the following year. His journal
contains some interesting communications respect-
ing the Jews, and an interview which he had with
the Rajah of Cranganore. It was calculated to en-
large the Society's views of the importance of their
Travancore missions, shemng that missionaries
were everywhere desired by Christians, Jews and
L^^^y^g After Mr Dawson's departure, the missionaries

among the at Cotym made arrangements to supply ministerial
aid to the inhabitants of Cochin, who about this
time lost their chaplain. This led to the renewal
of the intercourse with the Jewish colonies there ;
and at the earnest request of the Jews, they esta-
blished a school for their children, which was well
attended by girls as well as boys, and before long
contained ninety-six children. Besides an English
master and mistress, Mr and Mrs Jones, the mis-
sionaries employed two Hebrew teachers. They
directed Mr Jones to use a Malayalim translation
of Dr Watts's Catechism on the Old Testament
History, which was acceptable to the Jews ; but,

^ C. M. S. Reports, 25tb, 26th, 27tli. ^ Book x. chap. vi.

^ For extracts from Mr Dawson's Journal, see C. M. S. Re-
port, 19th, Appendix xx.



from some mistake, that on the New Testament
also was introduced, which raised a great commo-
tion, and the number of scholars was soon reduced
to twenty. The jDanic, however, was removed after
a few weeks, when the school revived ; and, in 1821,^
it was delivered over to Mr Sargon, on the part of
the Society for Promoting Christianity among the
Jews, by which he was employed. Mr Sargon was
a converted Jew, and he proved acceptable to the

39. The missionaries, relieved of this charge, success o<^
were able to give the more attention to the Euro- J^igi^''*^*
pean inhabitants. They opened a small Malayalim exertions.
school also, near the fort ; but the progress of the
scholars was slow, owing chiefly to the irregularity
of their attendance. The missionaries, in conse-
quence of their great distance from the place, could
do little more than keep the interests of religion
awake, and they were urgent in their applications
for a missionary to be appointed to the station.
This, however, the Society could not immediately
grant. In September 1824, the Kev. Samuel Kids-
dale arrived at Madras, for the Travancore mission,
and he remained some time at Cotym assisting Mr
Fenn in the grammar school. In 1826, he removed
to Cochin, where he laboured thirteen years with
great diligence and success. Though it comes not
within the period to which this volume is limited,
to give an account of his exertions and progress,
yet it may be remarked, that he quite realised the
prospect before him, as he thus described it shortly
after his arrival :'^ — '' I have the use of a noble
church— a congregation of about two hundred, who

^ This will appear from the state in which he left the mission
in 1839, when there were 150 communicants in his church,
and 245 scholars in his schools. Missionary Register 1840.
p. 185.


CHAP, understand English — and immediate prospect of es-
'_ tablishing a native service. I have also a school of

twenty children^ the number of which, I hope, will

shortly be doubled."^


Neiiore. 40. Nelloee. — The Rcv. Joseph Fawcett Beddy

arrived, with Mr Ridsdale, at Madras in 1824 ;
and the Corresponding Committee, desirous of
occupying a station in the Teloogoo country, ap-
pointed him to Nellore, the nearest district north
of Madras where that language prevails. He arrived
there in December, and was cordially welcomed by
the Collector, E. Smalley, Esq., and immediately
commenced the study of Teloogoo. He also estab-
lished two English services on the Lord's day, and
opened a native school. Convenient premises were
purchased by the Society, and the station was
considered as highly eligible for a mission ; but Mr
Beddy had occupied it little more than a twelve-
month when he w^as obliged, by his own and his
wife's ill health, to return to England. Mrs Beddy
and her infant died on the passage. The gentle-
men at Nellore were anxious for another mission-
ary, and ready to contribute to his support ; but
the Society were not able to comply with their

Masuiipa- 41. Masulipatam. — Several chaplains were desir-
ous of attending to the natives as far as their offi-
cial engagements would allow. The first to be
mentioned is the Rev. W. Roy, at Masulipatam,
the British head-quarters in the Teloogoo country.
In addition to two schools for the European chil-
dren in the garrison, in 1817 he opened one in the

' C. M. S. Reports, 25th, 26th, 27th.




Pettah for children of all descriptions. Most of the
native scholars were, at their own request, in-
structed in the prayers and catechisms in use, and
some of them attended the Sunday school and
pubhc worship. The onerous duties of Mr Roy
with the Europeans prevented his doing more for
the natives, and he was removed to another station
before he could see much effect from his school.

42. Tellicherry. — The Rev. F. Spring was ap- Teiii
pointed to this station in 1816, and began imme-
diately to study the vernacular language, Malaya-
lim, with a view to the instruction of the natives,
and to the translation of the Scriptures and other
religious works. In 1817, he estabUshed a school,
for which he obtained a Christian master, named
Baptiste, of whose piety and capabilities he gave
a satisfactory account. In his report at the close
of the year, he remarks — '' The school flourishes.
We have ninety boys in all ; they come many miles
to it. It does and will support itself We have
now above five hundred rupees in hand. It rises
in reputation daily." The school was well sup-
plied with Bibles and Testaments, and the Church
Catechism was freely taught. In his weekly visits,
Mr Spring addressed the children and others who
were present, supporting his remarks by quotations
from the Scriptures.^ Some of his elder scholars,
especially two Nair youths, took such an interest
in what they learned, as to go the length of re-
nouncing their idols, and giving him reason to hope
that they would, ere long, embrace the Christian
faith. " I am persuaded," he wrote in 1819, ''that
there are many plants of Christ hereabouts, ready
to burst into blossom." ^

C. M. S. Report, 19th, pp. 178-179, note.
C. M. S. Report, 20th, p. 185.


CHAP. Mr Spring established a fund for the relief of the
^^- poor, which was munificently supported by the
European inhabitants. He also projected an asylum
for orphans, both East-Indian and native. In 182 1 ,
he succeeded, after much exertion, in building a
plain, substantial church. But his appointment to
the occasional duties of Calicut took him so much
from Tellicherry, that he was no longer able to
give to his missionary work the attention it required.
In the year 1823, severe domestic affliction and his
declining health obliged him to return to Europe.
He left, however, behind him, as the permanent
fruit of his exertions in the service of religion, a
complete translation of the Gospels into the Ma-
layalim dialect of North Malabar, besides other
works in the same language.^

The school, hitherto supported by local funds,
was now transferred to the Church Missionary
Society, and continued under the care of its faith-
ful teacher, Baptiste. One of the provincial judges,
T. H. Baber, superintended it while at the station ;
and after his removal, others were found to under-
take the office ; but without a resident clergy-
man to give his constant attention to it, the mis-
sionary work, so well commenced, soon began to

Canna- 43. Cannanore. — Tliis statioii is about thirteen

miles from Tellicherry. Mr Spring, hearing of a
native Christian, who was pubHcly preaching to a
small congregation, his Christian countrymen, in the
Company's chapel at Cannanore, paid him a visit,
and found that he came from Trichinopoly, where
he was brought up in a missionary school. His
father and grandfather being Christians, he was
baptized in childhood, and named Jacob Joseph.

r. M. R. Koport, 24th, p. 154.



Visiting his brother at Cannanore, he found a few
Christians^ who were anxious for instruction^ both
for themselves and their children, and was induced
to become their teacher. On the Lord's day he
assembled his little flock for public worship, and
instructed them in religion during the week. He
also opened a school, consisting of seven children,
and yielding between three and four rupees a-month,
upon which he subsisted, apparently well contented.
Satisfied with Mr Spring's report of the piety and
capabihties of this young man, the Corresponding
Committee took him into their service, as catechist
of the Church Missionary Society at Cannanore.
Under Mr Spring's encouragement and attention,
the congregation gradually increased, until, in 1820,
it consisted of sixty-two souls, some of whom were
converts from heathenism, whom Mr Spring had
the satisfaction of baptizing. The school, also
connected with the church, then contained twenty-
five children ; and a second school was established
in the town for all classes, and soon had fifty-four
scholars. Though the Scriptures were used, the
natives were favourably disposed towards the schools,
and the progress of the children was satisfactory.
Mr Spring describes his visits to this devout com-
munity as seasons of great refreshment to his spirits ;
and he received pleasing testimony from several
gentlemen at Cannanore to the good conduct of
such of Jacob's congregation as were in their service,
or had come under their observation.

The members of this church were generally
connected with the troops quartered at Canna-
nore, Avho were frequently changing. This occa-
sioned a perpetual fluctuation, both in the congre-
gation and the schools ; and, in 1822, they were
reduced so low that Mr Spring deemed it advisable
to place the catechist at Cohnbatoor, where a pro-
mising field of use Fulness had been opened for


CHAP, him, and his labours were less likely to be inter-

L rupted.^

Coimba- 44^ CoiMBATOOR lies nearly a hundred miles south-
east of Tellicherry, and is the capital of a district.
Here Jacob was welcomed by the collector of the
district/ John Sullivan, Esq., under whose patron-
age he soon brought the native Christians of the
place together, and established two Tamul schools.
A third school, for instruction in English, was sub-
sequently opened, under an East Indian master.
In 1825, the author, being detained some weeks
by sickness at Coimbatoor, paid what attention he
could to the native Christians and schools. At
that time the two Tamul schools contained together
about one hundred children, and the English school
thirty. The congregation was small, and the state
of the people and the schools shewed that the work
was too much for one catechist. There was a
second catechist at a village three miles off, called
Kanapuddy ; but he was an indolent man, and re-
quired to be stimulated to go more among the
inhabitants. Indeed, the whole mission needed a
resident missionary.

At this time an opportunity occurred to recover
a little girl from a life of infamy. A few years
before, during the prevalence of famine, her father,
a weaver, sold her, for seven rupees, to the dancing
women of the pagoda, who were training her for
their own dissolute course. After a while, both
her parents became convinced of the truth of Chris-
tianity, and offered themselves as candidates for
baptism. But their hearts yearned towards their

* C. M. S. Eeports, 18th, 19th, 21st, 22d.

^ This gentleman is a son of the late Mr Sullivan, President
of Tanjore, whose enlightened zeal in the cause of native edu-
cation has been already mentioned. Vol. iii. B. viii. c. 4.

mences a


child ; and conscience smitten, they told Jacob
their grief. An offer was immediately made to
repurchase her, which was refused ; but after some
resistance from the Brahmins and the women, and
through the Collector's humane intervention, we
recovered her, and in due time admitted her, with
her parents, into the Church of Christ. Consider-
ably more than the purchase-money was demanded
and paid for her ; but what price could be too
great for the ransom of a soul from a course of
profligacy upon which she must soon have entered ?

45. Chittoor. — The Rev. Henry Harper,^ the chittoor—
chaplain at Chittoor, engaged two native readers of ^^^' ^*
the Tamul and Teloogoo Scriptures, whom he sent com-
into the bazaar ; he also opened a small school,
chiefly for the children of native Christians ; but work,
scarcely had he begun to realise, in some degree,

the anticipations which he had indulged of giving
a permanency to his plans, when he was transferred
to Hyderabad. He did not leave Chittoor, how-
ever, before he had laid the foundation of a church
for the native Christians of the place.

46. Mr Harpers departure was the less to be MrDacre's
regretted, as a gentleman at the station, Joseph fo^r^Ji^e"^
Dacre,* Esq., of the Madras Civil Service, took an natives.
active part in the Christian instruction of the
natives. Mr Dacre was appointed to Chittoor

about the year 1807, and subsequently became
judge and magistrate at that place. While yet
young in the service, he paid much attention to the
instruction of the natives on the Lord's day, esta-
bhshed schools among them, and exerted himself
in various ways to introduce among them the bless-

^ Afterwards Archdeacon.

^ The head of an ancient Cumberland family, of Kirklinton
Hall in that county.


CHAP, ings of Christianity. He Avas himself, at that time,

1 very insufficiently informed in the doctrines of the

Gospel ; but having, in his occasional visits to
Madras, sought the acquaintance of those who were
able to instruct him more perfectly, he advanced
rapidly in Scriptural knowledge and in grace. His
zeal to impart what he thus learned, to his joy,
increased with his own progress. He first became
painfully affected by what he too well knew of the
irreligious state, and consequent peril of the souls
of his own countrymen around him, — the civil and
military servants of the East India Company ; and
set himself with earnestness to improve the advan-
tages which his situation afforded him, to commu-
nicate with them for their spiritual benefit. Among
the early fruits of his pious care for his brethren in
the service, was the accession of a young member
of his own judicial court, his registrar, G. J. Waters,
Esq., who, as he advanced in the knowledge and
love of the Gospel, entered warmly into the bene-
volent missionary views of his zealous instructor,
and readily engaged to assist him in teaching the
natives. Being well acquainted with the Teloogoo
language, he devoted himself to that portion of the
population around them ; while Mr Dacre charged
himself with the Tamul population. Each had his
stated meetings for public instruction, a part of

Online LibraryJames HoughThe history of Christianity in India : from the commencement of the Christian era : second portion: comprising the history of protestant missions, 1706-1816 / by James Hough (Volume 5) → online text (page 35 of 54)