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4. Preached to a respectable congregation in a school-house, consisting of the officers of government, the soldiers and citizens. It seemed good to speak the truth once more to so large a congregation. The hearers were respectful and attentive. I hope some good
was done in the name of Jesus. [Mr. Munson.
Favorable Disposition of the Resident— Opening for a Mission.
The resident has appended to the resolutions of government in reference to us a circular to the local authorities of Nattal, Tappanooly, and Pulo Batoo— also a letter to the Malay chiefs, and another to the Nyas chiefs on Nyas. He has also, in a report recently made to government on the Residency, recommended that missionaries be sent into the Batta country, also into Borneo. He does not, however, recommend Dutch missionaries, if the American Board occupy the ground, he says, it is all the same. He recommends that missionaries should reside for a while at Padang, Nattal, Tappanooly, or Pulo Batoo, and make occasional visits there, while acquiring the language. When this has been accomplished, they can without difficulty reside. He thinks the great thing for a man to keep on the right side of the natives is to possess a native tongue in his own head. Eloquence will do what the swords of a few cannot. They are neither difficult of approach, nor difficult to be persuaded. A man must know them, allow for their prejudices, bear with their ignorance, be patient under their stupidity, and enter into their feelings, and there will be no trouble.
There has been for some time no missionary or preacher here, except an old gentleman, Mr. Intfield, who has sometimes translated sermons into Dutch and Malay, and held service in the former language in the morning, and in the latter in the evening. Mr. Hartig, a German missionary of the Netherlands Society, who has been for eighteen months in the eastern islands, and whose acquaintance we had the pleasure of making at Batavia, is expected to be established here soon, with a view, however, of laboring among the European population. Mr. H. speaks English and Malay, as well as Dutch and German, and would be a most hearty friend to a missionary who was to reside here; as would also the lady to whom he is expected to be
married, whom we also knew at Batavia.
The Chinese have one small temple, like all the rest I have seen. The Malays have twelve messias, (mosques,) and two hundred priests. The Dutch have one school, taught by a common soldier, the last teacher having died in a drunken fit. Their last clergyman was not probably in his right mind when he returned to Europe. All of the people were crying out there for a missionary from America to reside among them. The population are very friendly and showed us much attention. English habits and customs and the Finglish language prevail. The Resident is more of an Englishman than a Dutchman both in habits and language. If a missionary were to reside here with reference to acquiring the Nyas language and eventually going thither, he would have a fine field of labor among the Nyas, Malay, and Chinese. The two latter by distributing books, the former by instructions, and getting around him a few trusty individuals, who would be a great assistance on his going to the island. He would find friends in the white population, and would learn many lessons concerning the preservation of his health and the character of the natives, which it is indispensable he should know before he goes among any uncivilized people to labor, in the tropics. He would also be able to form friends here who would be exceedingly useful, and make the best arrangements for his supplies:–also, pick up a little Malay, which would be indispensable wherever he might settle in the Archipelago—a medium of communication with people of every language in southeastern Asia. He would also be in the vicinity of Indrapore and Priaman, and in a place frequented by people from the interior, and have an inlet into all parts of the country, where he might make tours of usefulness among thousands. American ships often visit this port directly for coffee. Intercourse with Batavia, Madras, Penang, and the neighboring islands is frequent; and with Europe by way of Batavia and Madras. 11. Most of our conversation this evening has been in reference to the temperance cause. All over India the brandy, gin, and wine come upon the table of every European as regularly, every day, as his food; and no less regular is his segar. But it will be best, perhaps, to give a view of a day's living, as I have observed it.—First, a cup of coffee the first thing when out of bed— then bathing, dressing, exercise, etc., till breakfast, at eight or nine o'clock, which
is served up with coffee, tea, or wine, or all. At eleven o'clock comes strong drink; at twelve or one o'clock luncheon with wine; at four o'clock a stomacher; at half past five dinner, at which wine is drank without reference to quantity, accompanied usually with strong beer. After the cloth is removed, the ladies retire to the drawing room to take their coffee, and the gentlemen finish with fresh supplies of wine, together with a stand of brandy, gin, etc.; and sit and smoke, and “take a cup of kindness yet,” till they choose to break up. Smoking is habitual. Everywhere and at all times you see a man with a segar in his mouth—the parlor, the sleeping-room, the counting-room, it is all one. Every gentleman, almost, has a servant following him with a lighted rope as if not a breath could be drawn unconnected with tobacco-smoke. Such is the general character of the East India Europeans in reference to living, though there are many exceptions, as in every country there will be, where there are men of different tastes. Where the English customs prevail, the people are much more temperate, and approach nearer the New England style of living, as at Padang. Still, here are the strong drink and segars. Under such circumstances, with the apparatus before us, the discussion was highly interesting. Would that every ship to India would come loaded with temperance reports. The people only need enlightening to come forward and dash away the poisonous cup. I have frequently noticed that a discussion of this subject has often caused the bot
tle to go untouched during the evening. [Mr. Lyman.
erty. Rather it is the parent of the hospital and the asylum where the sick and wretched are provided with food and shelter. It is distressing to be assailed as we pass along the street, by the lame and the blind and the idle, without feeling at liberty to respond favorably to their piteous cry, “Carita, carita, seignior,” is an affecting appeal. Even now while 1 write, I hear the long dolorous supplication of one at the door, who begs in the name of Christ, and promises “the blessing of the Lord” upon him “who gives to the poor.” What are we to do? Give to them and thus encourage indolence, and bring to our houses daily a crowd of those who will eat nothing but the bread of idleness? Or shall we turn them away and thus perhaps be deaf to the cry of the real sufferer. I am in a strait. Those who have been longest in the land say, “Do not give at all in this way; but seek out a few whom you know to be deserving, and let these few be your peculiar care.” The ladies here have a poor's society; the gentlemen support a dispensary and physician; and thus provide “a multitude of impotent folk” with medicines and medical advice. To give one's mite to such institutions appears to me much better than to bestow it in indiscriminate charity. The Ladies' Poor Society make it their business to visit the poor at their own houses, and they give truly a touching description of the lamentable condition of many. The gentlemen's dispensary gave aid during the year past to not less than fifteen hundred diseased people. The Jews here hardly ever beg, although they are so poor and so much abused. They are not unwilling to engage in any menial service, however vile, for a little money; but I am told that one cannot hire the other poor to work in such a manner. Another man was killed last night. He makes the fifth whose life has been wilfully taken in this city within the month. What a sad moral condition do these murderers betray. 29. A genuine Smyrna winter day— raining very hard. The females are all wearing clogs, if they happen to be †: out. These are made of wood and elevate the feet several inches above the ground; an article quite necessary where the side-walks are not distinct from the middle of the street. Dec. 1. We live under a deplorable government, and yet as Franks we are free. If guilty of any breach of the law, Franks are tried by their own consuls, and by them dealt with accordingly. American citizenship then is as valuable to us, as Roman citizenship was to the apostles.
Services at the Armenian Church.
17. The Armenian church is within a large inclosure, almost covered with tomb-stones. These are level with the ground, and lie flatly upon its surface. The inscriptions are all in the Armenian character, save one; and almost all bear some insignia of the office or craft exercised during life time by the deceased. Thus an anvil and sledge-hammer indicate the grave of a blacksmith; a pair of shears that of a tailor, etc. The old door-keeper, or sexton, as we would have called him, very politely showed us into the church by lifting up one of the thick carpets of suitable size, which hung before each of the doors. Such appeared to be the only barrier to entrance, after one has entered the church-yard; but this is surrounded by high walls. The church is carpeted, and, if I mistake not, remains always in some degree lighted. It was the hour of evening worship when we entered; and though not yet sunset, the lamps were all burning. There are no pews; the people either stand upright, or sit, or kneel upon the carpet, according to the nature of the exercise. Two rows of massive pillars support the roof. The altar is rather a semicircular inclosure, and there a number of priests and as many boys were chanting before the lights and pictures. “What a wretched “illumination!' is the first thought that enters the mind of a spectator who has enjoyed and loves to enjoy the simplicity of christian worship. They have retreated from the sun, and have substituted for his light that of tapers. A few poor looking men and several children were present. The prayers chanted before them are in the ancient Armenian dialect, understood by few, if any, of the common people. On entering the church, each one advances to a convenient place with his shoes or slippers in his hand, and after depositing them on the floor and taking off his cap, stoops, and with his forehead touches the carpet; then rising he restores his cap and crosses himself. They wear their caps during the service, except at particular parts, when they remove them, at the same time bowing their foreheads or kneeling down all together. The genuflexions of some few appeared to be of a private nature, being
very often repeated without regard to the posture of the rest, and that especially on their first entrance. Among the different christian churches of the East there are several important and much vexed questions concerning the right way of making the sign of the cross; such as, “Shall it be made by touching the right breast before touching the left one or vice versa?” “Shall it be made with one, two, or three fingers, or with the whole hand?”—What is the tendency of a Christianity the most important dogmas of which relate to such matters? What must naturally be its influence over the enlightened minds of a community? Can they bow in reverence to such a system? Or when shut out from a knowledge of rational, simple, uncorrupted Christianity, will they not judge of the Bible from that which they see in the churches around them, and rejecting, as absurd, the whole affair of religion, plunge headlong into infidelity? Let facts in all these countries and in Italy, Spain, France, etc., give the answer. After all these services a Bible was brought out of a little chamber by one of the priests, which was ornamented with a splendid image of the cross. The head priest kissed the cross, and spoke some words to the people; and then each one of them went forward to the railing to imitate him in kissing the venerated symbol. This was the conclusion of the whole matter.
26. The Armenians have a hospital here, but it contains very few inmates, only ten insane and seven poor people. They are tolerably comfortable, having mongals (after the manner of the country) in very good rooms. They were receiving their dinners of broth, etc., when we called. There is a large khan near the church and belonging to it, which has once been comfortable, but is now exceedingly old. Instead of many poor, as I expected to see, there are only three or four within its walls. Most of the rooms are empty and locked. Giovanni says there are but few Armenian poor.
At Constantinople there is a large and well conducted hospital, recently instituted by the Armenians.
The mongals above mentioned are open pans of various shapes, sizes, and materials, which are filled with live coals and substituted for fire-places. Some of them are made of brass, but these belong only to the rich; some are inade of copper, and these are still more costly; and most people use those made of earth. The color of these is red; the shape that of a large bell, with a very open mouth. in the families of the wealthy the mongal is placed upon a low stand under a table, which table is covered with some verythick clothes in order to enclose the heated air. The ladies sit with their feet under the table.
33rooga. ExTRACTS FROM THE JOURNAL OF MR. SchNeid F.R.
AN account of the commencement of missionary labors at Broosa, with some notices respecting the place, may be seen at p. 97 of the number for March.
July 20, 1834. Sabbath. This day being our first Sabbath in the place, we expected to be troubled by many visitors, this holy day being considered peculiarly appropriate for visiting by the people. To avoid interruption, we had our religious services in the early part of the day. Agreeably to our expectations, a number of the most distinguished and influential persons in the place called at our house. All appeared friendly. One of them interested us especially by the degree of intelligence and information which he manifested.
22. This morning our hearts were cheered by the intelligence that the school among the Armenians before alluded to, was to be opened on the morrow. The principal priest has proved himself unfriendly to it, and has used his influence with the other priests and with the people, to prejudice them against it. Their chief men have had several meetings to consult on the subject. It was finally concluded to commence the school, and to make the experiment whether it was a bad thing, accepting the service of Hohannes, the young Armenian in my employment, as teacher.
33. The Armenian school has been opened to-day, the names of seventy j, were handed in, though only part were present. Five of their princi. pal men, among whom was the vartabed above mentioned, came to see the school. They examined the cards, looked at all
the apparatus, and saw the principles on
which it was to be conducted. They all united in expressing their approbation. 24. This morning we were honored by a friendly visit from Nesah Effendi, a *... of great influence and in high rank.
IIe was attended by his only son and servants. He is a man of considerable learning for a Mohammedan. He was much interested in the terrestrial globe, and made many inquiries respecting it. Being rather fond of learning, he seemed pleased with the various books which were shown him, more particularly by those relating to the natural sciences, of some of which he seemed to have a general idea. He expressed his pleasure that we had come to reside here. As Turks are not addicted to flattery, and as he condescended to call on us, we may reasonably infer that he regards us with feelings of kindness and friendship. His favor will be of the greatest importance to us; especially, if a door should be opened for schools among the Turks, as I hope will be the case in the course of time. In the evening several Greeks of the first rank in the place called to see us. Every day since our arrival we have had visits of this description. All seem to be friendly, and the Greeks, more especially the young among them, are much interested in books, and have a strong desire to be educated. When I tell them of our schools and colleges in America, they immediately burst out into expressions of admiration, lamenting, at the same time, that they have no more and no better schools, and are also so destitute of books. 30. Several rather pleasing incidents have occurred during the last few days, one of which I will mention.—The Årmenian vartabed asked Hohannes, the young Armenian, “What do your friends (referring to us) do on the Sabbath? Do they drink wine, visit, or attend to their business, etc.?” “No,” was the reply, “they spend the day in reading, meditation, prayer, and preaching, “Oh,” said he, “that is like the primitive Christians. But there are no Amenians here now to preach to.”—“They talk to each other on serious subjects when only a few are together. But when their number is large, they assemble together and have regular preaching.”—“Very good.” ./lug. 4. I find that the priests are making special efforts to prejudice the people against me. Their opposition is the result of their ignorance. Many of them cannot read well, and all of thein seem totally ignorant of holiness of heart. With the Bible they seem as much unacquainted as if they did not possess it, except those parts of it which they have perverted in order to favor their rites and ceremonies. Many false reports designed for our injury are in Qo
circulation. It is not a little amusin hear what various, strange, and bad things are said of us. I am somewhat apprehensive that they will have an unfavorable effect upon our school, as the priests who are opposed to it take every possible occasion to give these reports circulation and weight. A young Greek falsely states, that he was offered six hundred piastres, if he would become a Protestant. Probably, he has been bribed to fabricate this falsehood by one of the priests. He had previously manifested much interest in my removal to this place; but as he has no moral principle, he would easily yield to so strong a temptation as money, to tell a falsehood, which a priest could easily shew him, was, in this case, rather a meritorious act than a sin. 14. It is difficult for these people to learn the meaning of disinterested benevolence. It is known that the school among the Armenians has been opened and thus far supported at my expense. There is much speculation as to my motives. As they never act but for some selfish end, they cannot conceive how I should be influenced by better motives. “He must have some sinister design,” say they. “Why should he give money, if it were not to receive something equivalent in return?” Hence they are exceedingly suspicious, and the very nature of the missionary work, which is one of benevolence from beginning to end, throws an obstacle in our way. But difficult as this lesson may be, in the course of time we may hope they will learn it. 15. Went to-day to return the visit to Nesah Effendi. I found him sitting in his delightful o garden, according to the custom of the Turks, by the side of a fountain beautifully playing. He received me very cordially, offered me a pipe and coffee. There was much ease and dignity in his manners. I inquired whether he had heard of the Turkish school in Constantinople. He replied in the affirmative, and with much satisfaction. On learning more of the Lancasterian system he was much interested and remarked, “We must have such schools here, seeing they have them at the capital.” Supposing that the school among the Armenians was to teach English, he proposed to send his little son. I gave him some account of the schools, academies, and colleges in America. He was delighted with the rehearsal, and expressed a strong desire to visit our country and see its institutions. “The Americans come to visit our country and
learn our manners and customs,” said he, “and why should not we visit their country?” He made many inquiries respecting our government, etc. He is the most liberal-minded Turk in the place, and possesses a vast degree of influence. The governor consults him in all cases of high importance. I have very strong hopes that he will be the means of opening schools among the Turks here before long. Sept. 9. This morning I had an interesting conversation with an intelligent young Greek. In the course of our remarks, I was led to speak of the character which the Bible requires of Christians, and what are the principles which actuate them. He inquired if such was the character of professing Christians in America? I replied, that to a good degree it was possessed by many. He then inquired if in America Christians traded without telling falsehoods and defrauding. I assured him, that if any person was detected in either he would immediately forfeit his character as a Christian; indeed, that he could not be a genuine Christian who indulged in them. He replied, to use his own language, “This is a great thing.” These ideas and kindred ones which I advanced, were entirely new to him. All his inquiries and the whole tenor of his remarks, showed his entire ignorance of the spirituality and the extent of the divine law. 15. A few days since Matteos Vartabed, who is to be the Armenian bishop of this place, arrived here. He was escorted to the city by the priests and principal men of their nation. 18. For several days past, Greeks have been leaving the city to go on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. They assemble in their church, when the priest reads prayers for the occasion. Afterwards they walk through the street in procession, the priests leading the way and chanting some sacred song. Then follow several little boys with lighted tapers in their hands, and last of all come the pilgrims themselves, attended by their friends. In this manner they proceed till they arrive at the end of the city, when they mount their horses and commence their long journey. 19. There exist in Turkey and some other countries farther east several orders of religious persons, called by the general name of dervish. They are among the Turks what the monks are among the Catholics. They generally live secluded from the o, spending their time in fasting and various other