six years of age, others were of different ages up to twelve or more. They read Auently in their own language-of course I

did not understand, but I was gratified ! much, and longed to be employed in the

same manner. We called on two other native schools, and then on a Portuguese one, in which English is taught.

“Mrs. Wilson, formerly Miss Cook, appears to delight in her work, is daily employed in it, and furnishes an example worthy of imitation. She met with much opposition at first, but persevered and overcame. She has had twenty schools under her superintendence at once; they are now reduced to a smaller number. A central school-house has been erected two stories high: the lower for the schools, where she hopes to assemble a large number, thus abridging her labor and increasing her usefulness-the upper for her residence.

Sept. 27.-I am very much pleased with the appearance of Calcutta. We think it resembles many, elegant country seats brought together. Many of the houses are

splendid and magnificent-three or four en stories in height with flat roofs-a rich gari den or green attached. The style of finu ishing in the inside is grand, but plain : ť furniture very rich. Fruits and trees are

abundant, the thick foliage affording a cooling shade and delightful prospect.

“ Last evening I rode with Mrs. Ellerton to visit the Orphan Asylum, a large edifice, accommodating ninety girls of different ages, from five or six, to eighteen or twenty. Mr. and Mrs. Schmidt have the care of it, residing in the house and superintending their instruction, &c. The elder girls assist. Mrs. E. and one more lady only, remain of the first founders. The little girls came around their benefactress with smiles of joy. It was a pleasant sight. There is a large green yard round the building, bordered with trees almost concealing it from view at the road.

“ At half past seven, we attended worship at an Independent church, where Rev. Mr. Hill of the London Missionary Society preaches, and were highly pleased with the services. The singing was fine, attended with a sweet organ. The hymn commencing with

Why sinks my weak, desponding mind,

Why heaves my soul this anxious sigh,' &c. was given out, and was sweetly tranquillizing to my mind. Mr. A. and myself are in good health, but somewhat enervated. This is called the most trying season.

Oct. 1.-On Friday last went to visit Mrs. Trawin at Kidderpore about four miles distant. Here is a missionary station and a native church, but their indefatigable teacher is gone to his reward. Mrs. T. hasi been greatly afflicted, but her trial is working for her good. Her health is feeble, and six or eight weeks since, her husband went with her up the river for her benefit. It was a relief to her, but he took fever and soon died. Their little daughter of about seven years died also near the same time. She is left with two little children, and in a feeble state. She is soon to embark for England.

“Yesterday in compliance with a previous invitation, Mr. A. preached for Mr. Hill. I accompanied him, and we passed the day in the family of Mr. H. The natives hold their festival near here, and disturb them night and day with their music, songs, dances, &c. I saw them march with three different idols, but was not near enough to discern them distinctly. There was however a large round frame, raised upon the shoulders of men to which the idol was attached, and it was much decorated.

Oct. 3.-To-day the festival closes. I learn, that on the Sabbath they took those idols which I saw, and after their various

ceremonies, marched with them down 'to the river, there stripped off their ornaments, and then drowned them, as they call it, in the river. They afterwards '

make a new god, set it in its pagoda, and keep it another year, to use in the same manner. Strange conduct of a creature to its god!

“We were told, that on one day they killed sacrifices of goats or other animals for an oblation or offering.

66 Most of the Hindoos have ornaments attached to them. Some have rings on the feet, some on the wrist, some in the ear, some in the nose; the last is a token of being betrothed. I saw several in Mrs. Wi's schools of this description. This ceremony takes place when the children are perhaps six years old, and frequently before they have seen each other. The bargain is made by the parents, who send presents to each other, make a feast, and carry the children about in a cart, or kind of palanquin, after which they are separated and seldom see each other, till the completion of the match, which takes place at about twelve years of age. The wife then goes to live with the husband's parents.

“ When a Hindoo dies, the person principally concerned in his burial, whether a son, nephew, or whatever relation, makes presents to the relatives, who attend the funeral, of rice, cloth, or money, and many

come quite a distance to receive them. : The deceased would be dishonored, if these

i presents were not made. The “ They are a very indolent race, yet they

are not wanting in intellect or genius, if cultivated. I have seen surprising specimens of their needlework. It is performed, I am told, by the men. They bring about for sale the most beautifully wrought gown pat

terns of lace, muslin, and cambric. These t are much worn here by the English ladies.

Oct. 6.-On Thursday, Mrs. Gisborne returned with her family. We are treated with the utmost generosity and kindness. This morning, Mr. and Mrs. Hough called on us. Mrs. H. is a niece of Mr. M., from whom we brought a letter to her. She resembles him enough to be his sister. She was very glad to hear from her relatives, and I was much gratified to meet one whose relatives I knew.

8th.Yesterday we attended worship in the morning with Mr. and Mrs. G. at their church,-in the evening, Mr. A. preached for Mr. Hill, and they accompanied us. They appear to possess truly Christian and

« VorigeDoorgaan »