Imagens da página

The American Society for Colonizing and Evangelizing the Jews will hold their Annual Meeting on Friday next at 10 o'clock, and in the evening a sermon will be preached in the North Church.

The General Convention of the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States of America, will meet in Philadelphia, on Tuesday, the 16th of May.

The General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in the United States of America, will meet in Philadelphia, the 17th inst,

To the Editor of the Christian Herald. SIR

A short time since, I read in the Herald an account of the Missionaries sailing for Jerusalem, taken from the Boston Recorder; the following lines, written on reading the account, you are at liberty to insert. Yours, &c.

B. Heaven's fierce wrath has touch'd the temple's spires,

Its lovely wreaths are torn and rent asunder;
Each morn and eve where glow'd devotion's fires

Jehovah pour'd his thunder.
O'er the delightsome land wild ruin reigns,

Of villas, cities, towns, the wide spread grave;
The camel winds across its hallow'd plains,

Or, pausing, drinks the wave.
The scatter'd rocks still lie on Calvary's hill,

And darkness shrouds the Saviour's broken tomb :
O'er mountains, fields, and each sequestered rill

Nods the fierce Turkish plume.
But thou art glorious still, though deep decay

Has seiz'd thy temples, land of high renown,
The sun, at noon, sheds not so sweet a ray

As when his beams go down. Devoted youth, go pitch your lowly tent

Near Calvary's hill, or Jordan's sacred stream;
On Bethlehem's plain, or Tabor's steep ascent,

Beneath the stars sweet gleam.
There shall the Arab, drawn by pow'r divine,

Bend his proud step, and pause beneath your shade ;
There shall the Turk his waving plume resign,

In peaceful garb array'd.
Ah me, I cannot go your toils to share,

But freely give of well earn’d praise the meed;
My lowly flock demands my watchful care,

Them must I stay to feed.
Yet oft to you I turn the wand'ring eye

From shady nook, deep dell, or forest's maze,
Or mountain's slope, my pray'r ascends on high,

That heav'n may guide your ways.


Vol. VII.]

Saturday, May 20, 1820.

[No. II.


From the Evangelical Magazine.

MEMOIR OF THE REV. HENRY MARTYN, B. D. Late Chaplain to the Hon. East India Company, and Missionary to

India and Persia. Axoxo the stars which glitter in the firmament of the church, few will be found of brighter lustre than that “man of God,” whose memorial we now present to our readers. To the friends of mankind at large, who long for the conversion of the heathen, and admire the heroic zeal of able and faithful missionaries, the name of Henry Martyn will ever be dear; and it will stand prominent in the records of Christian fame, with the venerable names of Zeigenbald, and Eliot, and Mayhew, and Brainerd, and Swartz, and Vanderkemp; and will serve, we doubt not, to kindle a flame of missionary zeal in the breast of many a British youth, and many a pious scholar, who will pant to imitate the example of Henry Martyn.

HENRY MARTYN was born at Truro, in Cornwall, on the 18th of February, 1781. He was the third son of Mr. John Martyn, who raised himself from a humble and laborious situation in life to a state of comparitive ease and comfort. Henry, when between seven and eight years of age, was placed at the grammar school of the town, under the care of Dr. Cardew, when his proficiency in the classics was considerable. In the autumn of 1795, when he was about fourteen, his father sent him to Oxford, to be a candidate for the vacant scholarship in Corpus Christi College, but he proved unsuccessful. He returned to school, and continued there till the summer of 1797. He then went to reside at Cambridge, having entered at St. John's College. In the December following, he obtained a place in the first class, and at the next public examination in the summer, he reached the second station in that class-a point of elevation which flattered his pride noi a little.

To the eye of the world, every part of Mr. Martyn's conduct appeared amiable and commendable; but he seems to have been all this time totally ignorant of spiritual things; but happily for

• We cannot boast of originality in this brief memoir. It is chiefly an abstract from “ Memoirs of the Rev. Henry Martyn, B. D.” &c. written, as we understand, by the Rev. Mr. Sargent, to which we beg leave to refer our readers, many of whom we trust will be induced by this slight sketch, to resort to the original work, which will amply repay the purchase and the perusal. VOL. II,


[ocr errors][ocr errors]

him, he had not only a religious friend at college, but an eminently pious and affectionate sister in Cornwall. When he visited her and his other relations in 1799, she frequently addressed him on the subject of religion, but her admonitions were not very grateful to him; a conflict, however, took place in his mind between his conviction of the truth of what she urged, and his own love of the world; he even resented the efforts of his father and sister with harsh language; he promised, indeed, to read the Bible for himself, but on returning to College, Newton and the mathematics engrossed all his thoughts.

Soon, however, an afflicting event roused him to serious consideration; he received in the January following the unexpected and heart-rending intelligence of the death of his father. He took up his Bible ; he perused the Acts, and was insensibly led to inquire into the doctrine of the apostles : he began to pray, and read Doddridge's Rise and Progress; but it was chiefly by attendance on the ministry of the Rev. Mr. Simeon, and the Lord's blessing thereon, that he acquired the true knowledge of the gospel.

Soon after this he endured a season of painful solicitude; he was to pass a public examination for a degree; when his decided superiority in mathematics was acknowledged, and the highest academical honour was adjudged to him before he had completed his twentieth year.

In the following summer he spent much of his time at Cambridge alone; when God was pleased greatly to bless, for his spiritual improvement, his solitude and retirement; and then it was that he began to experience the pure and exalted pleasures of evangelical religion. It was at this period also, that he enjoyed the friendship of Mr. Simeon, and of the young Christian friends to whom he was introduced by him. Now he imbibed his first conceptions of the transcendent excellence of the Christian ministry above all other professions, and fully resolved to devote himself to it.

In the month of March, 1802, he was chosen fellow of St. John's, after which he again visited his sister and friends, with whom he spent some of the sweetest hours of his life.

In October, 1802, he returned to the university, when, by the conversation of Mr. Simeon, he turned his thoughts towards the office of a Christian missionary; and having read, with deep attention, the life of that apostolical man of God, David Brainerd, of America, he formed the resolution to imitate his example. This resolution, indeed, was not formed without the severest conflict in his mind; for he was endued with the truest sensibility of heart, and was susceptible of the warmest and tenderest attachments. But he was fully satisfied that the glory of the Redeemer would be promoted by his going forth to preach to the heathen; he considered their pitiable and perilous condition, and he remembered

[ocr errors]

the last injunction of his Lord, “ go and teach all nations." Actuated by these motives, he offered his services to the Church Missionary Society; and from that time stood prepared, with a childlike simplicity of spirit, and an unshaken constancy of soul, to go to any part of the world, whither it might be deemed by the society expedient to send him.

On Sunday, Oct. 22, 1803, after much solemn preparation, Mr. Martyn was ordained deacon at Ely; and truly might he, on that serious occasion, affirm, “that he was inwardly moved by the Holy Ghost," to assume the sacred function. He commenced his ministry, as curate to Mr. Simeon, in Trinity church, and preached his first sermon, on the Sunday after his ordination, on Job xiv. 14. “If a man die, shall he live again,” & Mr. M. also undertook the charge of Lolworth, a small village in the neighbourhood of Cambridge.

Having received an appointment as one of the chaplains to the Hon. East India Company, and having been ordained priest, in London, he took leave of his native country and embarked for India, on board the Union, Sept. 10, 1805. His feelings on this occasion were indescribable. During the voyage he preached once every Sunday, (oftener was not permitted) and took much pains in the instruction of the crew and the soldiers.

On the 3d of Jan. 1806, the fleet anchored in the bay of the Cape of Good Hope, the army disembarked, and the colony was taken possession of by the English.

While at Cape Town, Mr. Martyn enjoyed the inexpressible pleasure of conversing with Dr. Vanderkemp and Mr. Read, of whom he writes in his journals with great delight. Here also he ascended Table Mountain. “I felt," said he, "a solemn awe at the grand prospect, from which there was neither noise nor small objects to draw off my attention. I reflected, especially when looking at the immense expanse of sea on the east, which was to carry me to India, on the certainty that the name of Christ should, at some future period, resound from shore to shore. I felt commanded to wait in silence, and sec how God would bring his promise to pass.

Early in February, Mr. Martyn proceeded towards India, and on the 22d of April anchored in Madras roads. Here he had the pleasure of conversing with Dr. Kerr, Mr. Loveless, and others. After being detained a short time at Madras, the fleet sailed for Calcutta. Da passing the great pagoda of Juggernaut, which was distinctly visible from sea, his soul was excited to sentiments of the deepest commiseration for the children of wretched India, “ who had erected such a monument of her shame on the coast, and whose heathenism stared the stranger to his face.'

A tremendous storm shortly ensued, and the danger was great, but the ship was mercifully preserved, and Mr. M. soon arrived at Calcutta. Writing to a friend, he says, “I am at last arrived

in the country where I am to spend my days in the work of the Lord. Scarcely can I believe myself to be so happy as to be aclually in India ; yet this hath God wrought!!!"

Mr. Martyn's arrival in India was an occasion of much delight and thankfulness to Dr. Buchanan, Mr. Brown, and other pious persons, who had long been praying that the Lord would send forth more labourers into that part of his vineyard. Mr. M. received a cordial welcome at the house of Mr. Brown, at Alueen, near Calcutta ; but his friends were soon alarmed at a severe attack of fever which he experienced ; he was however, mercifully restored, and enjoyed much pleasure in the society of his Christian brethren ; yet the sight of the cruel rites and debasing idolatries of heathenism around him, excited his grief and horror! to use his own expression, “he shivered as if standing in the neighbourhood of hell. He was frequently called to preach in Calcutta, to which great city his talents were peculiarly titted ; but bis heart was set upon the conversion of the heathen ; "he had a spirit to follow the steps of Brainerd and Swartz," and to have been prevented, by any other engagement, from going to the heathen, “would almost have broken his heart."

In September he received his appointment, as chaplain to Dinapore,* and in the close of that month prepared to leave the family in which he enjoyed so much delight. He left Aldeen in a boat (called a Budgerow), accompanied by Mr. Brown, Mr. Corrie, and other friends, who, the next day, were obliged to leave him to prosecute his voyage alone. The voyage occupied about five weeks, during which he was diligently employed in studying the oriental languages, translating part of the Acts into Hindoostanee, and sometimes going ashore, conversing with Brahmins and Mahometans, distributing tracts, and embracing every opportunity of endeavouring to make himself useful to the souls of

On the 26th of November, he reached Dinapore, which for a considerable time was to be his permanent residence. Here his objects were—to establish native schools—to prepare translations of the scriptures and religious tracts; and to attain such readiness in speaking Hindoostanee, as might enable him to preach the gospel in that language to the heathen.

The commencement of Mr. Martyn's ministry among the Europeans at this place, was by no means encouraging ; yet some there were, who afterwards became his joy, and will assuredly be his crown of rejoicing in the great day. Mr. M. in addition to his clerical duties as chaplain, proceeded steadily in the study of the languages, among which was the Sanscrit, and in translating the parables and parts of the Common Prayer. He was often engaged

Dinapore is a town in the province of Bahar, on the south bank of the Ganges, near Patna. Here are extensive cantonments for a brigade of troops. Sea C. H. Vol. VI. p. 207.


« AnteriorContinuar »