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Baptism of Slaves.

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school; and the building was ultimately removed by the Velloor people to be their church there. Thus the school in my compound was the origin of what is now a flourishing slave church at Velloor. The other schools also resulted in the establishment of a congregation at Komarum, a place about seven miles to the south-west of Cottayam. Mr. Andrews took charge of these two congregations, which both increased and flourished under his care; and for a time four boys from the college went, two and two, to them every Sunday morning. At eight o'clock they came, as they voluntarily offered themselves to my study, whence I dismissed them for their work of love with prayer; and sometimes I heard them read the notes of their sermons, the subjects of which were generally remarkably well chosen.

This movement among the slave population has proved to be of very great interest and importance. I went to Pallam some time since to witness the baptism of upwards of seventy of them by Mr. Andrews. The scene was most impressive. As the more solemn parts of the service were read—and never did I more appreciate its beauty —there was scarcely a dry eye among the adults. Whole families were in some instances baptised, father, mother, and children; and the parents afterwards consecrated to God in their union by the marriage service. On a later occasion I went with some of my first class boys to Komarum, where about fifty were similarly admitted into the visible Church by Mr. Hawksworth. The faith and earnestness of some of them were singularly tested. One man, for instance, as is not uncommon amongst them, had three wives. He felt that if he became a Christian he could only have one wife. What should he do ? Such questions as this are often very perplexing to the missionary, as might be supposed. The oldest of his wives was a broken-down, sickly woman; the other two were fine, handsome-looking, healthy young women as you would wish to see; and it was understood that he was very fond of them both. He, however, decided for himself that, as the oldest was his first, she was his proper wife; and to her he remained faithful after his baptism.

These poor people have, of course, by becoming Christians gained a great step socially and politically, as well as religiously. They are by no means slow to discern this, and on this account the greatest wisdom is needed in leading them. Some of them have perhaps thought more of their advance as citizens than as simple Christians. And so we begin already to find not a few of them rather cheeky,' and given to self-assertion. They feeland it would be strange if they did not—that they are no longer mere beasts of burden, but men. One consequence is that, following the example of their highercaste brethren, and relying on the protection of the

The Brahmin and the Slaves.

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European, they are beginning to be too much given to litigation. Nor are they willing any longer to be deprived of the use of the highways.

A short time since an amusing conversation was overheard by a friend of mine between two slaves and a Brahmin. The slaves were walking along the highway, when the Brahmin, meeting them, stopped at some distance, and cried out in a very authoritative manner the usual “Po! Po!'-English ‘Go! Go!' But the men were not willing to go, and marched onwards with a rather determined and careless air. The Brahmin raised his Po! Po!' with a still higher and more angry tone. "But,' said the slaves, we are not going to go; we have as much right now to the road as you; we are Christians.' Ho, ho ! exclaimed the Brahmin, softening his voice a little, • but it has not quite come to that yet, that I should have to get out of the way for you ; times are changing, it is true, and perhaps before long we shall be obliged to yield to another state of things; but for the present, while the custom lasts, you had better move out of the way.' The slaves laughed, but did not move out of the way, and the Brahmin was obliged to go into the hedge himself, while they passed, though quite respectfully, by on the other side.

With some drawbacks, however, which must be expected while human nature remains what it is, this Christian movement among the serfs of Travancore is really a grand one ; and while it developes many truly noble characters among this long down-trodden people, it is influencing the higher castes too to a great degree. The masters are beginning to acknowledge that the Christian slaves are much the best and most honest workmen ; and their opposition to the schools seems almost to have ceased. Indeed one of the wealthiest landowners near Velloor, a Syrian, who had long shown a determined opposition to his slaves being taught, astonished Mr. Hawksworth one Sunday morning by coming into the slave church, and joining in the worship, and afterwards bearing testimony to the good that had been effected among his own slaves. Pointing to one man in particular, he said, “That man was once the terror of all his neighbours, but now that he is a Christian, he is a gentleman. This Syrian further showed his

' change, of mind by giving a portion of land, that the slave church might be enlarged. The testimony-and it is not a solitary one-of such men as this, who was orce 'a persecutor and injurious,' is of the utmost value as to the reality of the influence of Christianity on the slaves.

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Tiruwilla Boat Songs.

185

CHAPTER VII.

To Tiruwilla-Boat songs—A native party-Magic lantern and

electrifying machine—The pagoda--Hindu musicWorship of
Shiva - Visit to a petty Rajah—The Bible in the pagoda - A
sudden death — Establishment of mission at Tiruwilla -- Diffi-
culties— Encouragements—The shadow of the church – Visit to a
Syrian family-A native house-A death Mr. Hawksworth-
Mavelicara-Mr. Peet- The church ornament - Difficulties at
Mavelicara—The Brahmin converts—The Brahmin and the slave
-Caste—Complicated question-Offended prejudices-Religious
aspect of caste-Institutes of Menu --Numbers of converts, why so
varying-Proportionate increase of Christian families—Allepie
—The paddy-field wheel-Low country - Crocodiles — An alli-
gator's maw The teal catcher-A sad scene- A Mahomedan

marriage. I HAVE lately returned from a trip to several of the principal mission stations. I generally spend my holidays away from Cottayam, if I can; and often find

, it a pleasant change from the monotony of school work to visit my missionary brethren. The day after the college broke up for the Christmas holidays, I started with Mr. Hawksworth in his fine cabin boat for Tiruwilla. We had a splendid row and sail for about seven hours. Through the lovely river scenery we rowed, and as we got into more open country by the Backwater we put up the sail, which took us along at about six miles an hour, the boatmen entertaining us with their

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