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LIFE, WRITINGS, AND CORRESPONDENCE,
SIR WILLIAM JONES.
SIR WILLIAM JONES embarked for India in the Crocodile frigate;. and in April 1783, left his native country, to which he was never to return, with the unavailing regret and affectionate wishes of his numerous friends and admirers.
As to himself, the melancholy impressions which he could not but feel on such an occasion, were alleviated by various considerations. The expectations of five years were now accomplished in the attainment of his wishes; he anticipated the
utility of his official labours to the public, and the occupation so peculiarly delightful to him, of investigating unexplored mines of literature. Sir William Jones was now in his thirty-seventh year, in the full vigour of his faculties, and he looked forward with ardour to the pleasures and advantages arising from his situation in India, without any apprehension that the climate of that country would prove hostile 'to his constitution. A difference of opinion on great political questions, without diminishing his regard for his friends, had narrowed his habits of intercourse with some whom he sincerely esteemed, and he felt therefore the less regret in quitting those whose principles he wished to approve, but from whom, an adherence to his own frequently compelled him to dissent. He reflected with pleasure on the independency of his station, that the line of duty, which it prescribed, was, strait and
defined, and in leaving his native country, for which he retained the warmest affection, he was not sorry to abandon all
political cares and discussions. But his greatest consolation and enjoyment were derived from the society of Lady Jones.
To those who are destitute of internal resources, whose habits have led them to seek for amusement in the miscellaneous occurrences and topics of the day only, a sea voyage is a period of fatigue, languor, and anxiety. To Sir William Jones every new scene was interesting, and his mind, exercised by incessant study and reflection, possessed an inexhaustible fund of subjects; which he could at pleasure select and apply to the purposes of recreation and improvement, but his application during his
voyage was more particularly directed to those studies, by which he was to enlarge the requisite qualifications for discharging the duties of his public station,
with satisfaction to himself, and benefit to the community.*
* The following memorandum was written by Siç William Jones during his voyage.
Objects of Enquiry during my residence in Asia.
1. The Laws of the Hindus and Mohammedans.
the Indians. 9. Natural Productions of India. 10. Poetry, Rhetoric, and Morality of Asia. 11. Music of the Eastern Nations. 12. The Shi-King, or 300 Chinese Odes. 13. The best accounts of Tibet and Cashmir. 14. Trade, Manufactures, Agriculture, and Commerce
of India. 15. Mogul Constitution, contained in the Defteri
Alemghiri, and Ayein Acbari. 16. Mahratta Constitution.