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that General Maitland, and the senior chaplain at Columbo, the Honorable Mr. Twisleton, had afforded their patronage in the most liberal manner to these useful teachers. Government has allowed to each of them an annual stipend. In returning from the country I passed through the groves of cinnamon, which extend nearly a mile in length. Ceylon is believed by some of the Easterns both Mahomedans and Hindoos, to have been the residence of the first man (for the Hindoos have a first man, den of Eden, as well as the Christians;) because it abounds in "Trees pleasant to the eyes, and good for food;" and is famous for its rare metals and precious stones. "There is gold, bdellium, and the onyx-stone.' ' The rocky ridge which connects this happy island with the main land, is called Adam's bridge; the lofty mountain in the middle of the island every where visible, is called Adam's peak: and there is a sepul. chre of immense length, which they call Abel's tomb. All these names were given many ages before the introduction of christianity from Europe. The cinnamon trees love a sandy soil. The surface of the ground appeared to be entirely sand. I thought it wonderful that the most valuable of all trees should grow in luxuriance in such an arid soil without human culture. I compared them in my mind to the Ceylon Christians in their present state, who are left to flourish by themselves under the blessing of heaven, without those external and rational aids which have been divinely appointed to nourish the church of Christ.”
"Columbo, 11th March, 1808. “I have conversed with intelligent persons on the means of translating the scriptures into the Cingalese language. The whole of the New Testament has been translated, but only three books of the Old Testament. But even this portion has been trans lated almost in vain: for there is no supply of books
for the use of the people. I reflected with astonishment on the fact, that there are by computation 500,000 natives in Ceylon professing christianity, and that there should not be one coinplete copy of the holy scriptures in the vernacular tongue. Samuel Tolfry, esq. head of a civil department in Columbo, is a good Cingalese scholar, and is now engaged in compiling a Cingalese dictionary. I posed to him to undertake the completion of the Cingalese version; which is easily practicable, as there are many learned Cingalese Christians in Columbo. He professed himself ready to engage in the work, provided he should receive the sanction of government. I mentioned to him what had passed in my conversation with gen. Maitland, and his excellenty's favorable sentiments on the subject; and added that a correspondence would be immediately commenced with him from Calcutta cogcerning the work, and funds appropriated for the execution of it. Alexander Johnstone, esq. who is now in Columbo, has furnished me with his sentiments on the best means of reviving and maintaining the protesta ant interest in Ceylon. Did his professional avocations permit, Mr. Johnstone is himself the fit person to superintend the translation and printing of the scriptures. It is a proof of the interest which this gentleman takes in the progress of Christian knowledge, that he hath caused bishop Porteus's Evidences of Christianity to be translated into the Cingalese tongue, for distribution among the natives.”
A new empire has been added to Great Britain in the east, which may be called her Malay empire. The extensive dominion of the Dutch in the Indian ocean, is devolving upon the English; and it may be expected that Britain will soon be mistress of the
whole of the Malayan Archipelago. But as we increase our territories, we increase our obligations. Our duties to our Hindoo empire haye been long enough the subject of discussion: let us now turn our attention to the obligations which we owe to our Malay empire. We are now about to take possession of islands, peopled by numbers of protestant christians. For in every island where the Dutch established their government, they endeavored to convert the natives to christianity, and they were successful. Those amongst us who would recommend that the evangelization of barbarous nations should be deferred "till a more convenient season,” will have no opportunity of offering the advice in regard to some of these islands: for, behold, the natives are Christians already. They profess the religion of the bible. Let it be our endeavor then to do more justice to these aur new protestant subjects than we have done to the Christians of Ceylon. We have less excuse in the present instance, for the Malay scriptures are already translated to our hands. What a noble field here opens to the view of the "society for promoting Christian knowledge,” and of the Bible Society! Here there is ample room for a praise-worthy emulation, and for the utmost exercise of their benevolent exertions. One huudred thousand Malay bibles will not suffice to supply the Malay Christians.
The sacred scriptures were translated by the Dutch into the eastern Malay;* for that is the general language
of their extensive dominions in the Indian sea. But the eastern Malay is different from the western Malay, or that of Sumatra. In the college of Fort William, Thomas Jarret, esq. of the honorable company's civil service, was preparing a version of the scriptures in the western Malay; for which undertaking he was well qualified, having resided
* A complete version of the Malay bible was published in the Arabic character at Batavia, in 5 vols. 8vo. in 1758, under the direction of Jacob Mossed, gove ernor general of the Dutch possessions in the East Indies.
twelve years in Sumatra. When the progress of the biblical translations was interrupted in the college, Mr. Jarret prosecuted the work, after his return to Madras. He has had an assistant in the design, a learned Malay of the rank of Rajah in his own country, who came from Sumatra for the purpose. Mr. Jarret has also made considerable progress in compiling a copious Malay dictionary, which he commenced before he left the island. His labor, it is to be hoped, will not be lost to the public; for the Malay language is daily increasing in its importance to the British nation.
Prince of Wales' island, or as it is called by the natives, Penang, or Pulo Penang, that is, the island Penang, is the capital of our Malay territories, and is the proper place for the cultivation of the Malay language, being situated close to the main land of Malacca. As there is a college in Bengal for instructing the English in the languages of the continent of Hindostan, it is equally expedient that there should be an institution in Penang for the cultivation of the Malay tongue, and of the various dialects of our insular possessions. The Dutch attended to this subject in the very infancy of their empire. Besides, it is probable that Penang will, in the progress of eastern civilization, become the great emporium of Asiatic commerce. Its sudden elevation, is a prognostic of its future celebrity. It is situated on what may be called "the high way," in which ships sail from either hemisphere; and is the very centre of British navigation in the east. The author resided in this island for about a month, and was greatly surprised at the variety of languages which are spoken, and at the different races of men who present themselves to view in this infant settlement. The merchants are principally of the Malay and Indo-Chinese nations. John Shaw, esq. was prosecuting the study of the eastern Malay language, when I visited
the island, and has since published a considerable portion of a Malay grammar.
The author who chiefly claims our notice in regard to the Malay regions, is J. C. Leyden, M. D. Professor of Hindostanee in the college of Fort William. To him the learned world is indebted for "a dissertation on the languages and literature of the Indo Chinese nations,” just published in the Asiatic Researches, in which he illuminates a very dark subject, and opens a new view to Great Britain of her insular possessions in Asia. Dr. Leyden takes the lead in this most useful science, in the east, being possessed of very rare talents for general philogy, which he has applied almost suddenly, and with admirable effect, to the Oriental languages. If this erudite scholar should prosecute his researches for some years to come, with equal assiduity and suc. cess, he will promote, in the most effectual manner, the general civilization of the east by opening the way for the future exertions of Christian teachers, and preparing them for the study of languages, the names of which are not yet known in Europe.
Penang, and the neighboring settlement of Malacca, are most favorable stations for the study of the various dialects of the Malay and Chinese languages; and for pouring forth from the press useful works for the civilization of maritime and Austral Asia. Every week, boats of different nations are ready to carry off every thing that is printed to their respective regions. The author found here a general spirit of inquiry, a communicative disposition, and an unusual thirst for knowledge; for the civilities of commerce have a tendency to weaken prejudice and superstition among barbarous tribes.
Although the Dutch introduced christianity on every island where they established a government, yet the greater part of the Maylay islands are involved in darkness. The natives are of three casts, Pagans, Mahomedans, and Chinese. The Mahome