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REV. DAVID BROWN, Late Senior Chaplain of the Hon. Company's Establishment at Fort William. What pen can answer all the of the life which we are now about yet unsatisfied claims of deceased in part to trace, all the incidents worth or surviving admiration? In are drawn from a full and valuable the civil and military branches of piece of clerical biography, enthe Compau v's service, the mim- titled, “ Memorial Sketches of the bers of distinguished individuals, Rev. David Brown, with a selection whose names are remembered with of his Sermons preached at Calhonor by the present generation, cutta.” It appears from the prefar exceed those of whom bio- face that the first piece is a tribute graphic notices can be handed to to the excellence of the departed posterity
. The tenor of a life of minister by his widow. Besides the public service produced results articles announced in the title page, which are not forgotten; but the the ample but not diffuse volume, particular steps were not traced which bears the title of Memorial for public instruction by a witness- Sketches, contains five sets of exing friend. On many previous oc
tracts from Mr. Brown's papers, casions we have explored the best including those from his journal accessible sources, in order to at- and correspondence. The signature tain a correct summary of the life to the preface discloses the editor and actions of the statesman and of the whole to be the Rev. Charles the soldier, the scholar and the Simeon, of King's-college, Camtrareller ; and in several instances, bridge. original manuscript communica The Rev. David Brown, six tions have enabled us to present years the provost of Fort William, some substantial additions to the College, was born, toward the close. information previously extant in of 1762, near Hull
, in the east riding relation to the subject of the me- of Yorkshire, where his venerable moir; in others, the series of au parents are now living in retire. thentic materials wrought into a ment, and where his brothers carry brief narrative, has been a new on extensive farms. structure from the foundation. But He had, from early youth, a seAsiatic Journ. -No.43.
VOL. VIII. B
rious turn of mind, and was dis- at Calcutta for educating the ortinguished among his connections phan children of indigent officers for his amiable disposition and deceased, belonging to that setthirst for knowledge.
tlement. At about eleven years of age, The manner in which the overwhilst on a journey under the eye ture commenced, the friendly inof his friends, he fell into the fluence which induced him to accompany of a minister, who was cept it, and the munificent assiststruck by his intelligent enquiries ance which enabled him to go to and remarks. The stranger de- India under the Company's pasired to know for what line of life tronage, will be best unfolded by his friends were educating him; taking the particulars from his own his parents answered, that as he
papers. evinced no great disposition to be During his residence at college, employed in his father's farm, they he corresponded with a friend, in should probably apprentice him to London, on serious subjects, and some country tradesman, perhaps related some successful efforts he a druggist. The clergyman replied, had made to do good among the “ I think he is destined to a higher poor and destitute. That friend and more important profession ; communicated his letters to Major and if you will entrust him with Mitchell of the Hon. Company's me for a year or two, I will give service: the major wished to be him the preparatory attention ne acquainted with Mr. Brown, from cessary to his passing through a
a desire to serve him, and introgrammar school, which may, fit duced himself by letter, before him for college, and lead to his Mr. Brown had even heard of entering the church.” His parents his name. The original letter reaccepted this liberal proposal ; and mains in the possession of the fayoung David resided under the mily. The following are extracts private tuition of his new friend at from it : Scarborough, till he removed to
“ To Nir. D. Brown. Hull to attend the public grammar
“ Sir:-If there be any obligation corschool then governed by the Rev. Joseph Milner.
ferred on you by the application contained The master and scholar con
in this letter, you owe it entirely to our
common friend; for it is in consequence tracted a mutual esteem. After
of the very high opinion I have conceived the usual term of preparatory stue of your character and capacity, from the dies, David Brown proceeded to
favorable mention of both in the course Cambridge, and was entered at
of many conversations with your estimaMagdalen College. He became
ble correspondent, that I have been inardently attached to academical duced to write you this letter. pursuits, and found in the society
“ The officers belonging to the army in to which he was introduced many Bengal have formed theniselves into a socongenial minds. Under much interruption from severe illness, he ciely, for the benevolent purpose of sup
porting, educating, and introducing into sticcessively renewed his applica, life the orphans of both sexes belonging tion to the usual course of classical
to indigent deceased officers of that setand theological studies, cultivating tlement: they have twenty-five male, and those qualifications for entering the twenty-one female children under their church which the handmaid sci
care in Bengal. Their iutentions are to ences can confer ; but from this send these children to be educated in measured graduation he was un England when they arrive at a certain expectedly called away by the age ; but as they propose to have a superoffcr of an unsolicited appointment intendant of the institution in India, to a scholastic office in India, the they have authorized a cuptajn of the superintendancy of an institution Bengal army, lately arrived in England,
and on the point of re-embarking for Mr. Brown was introduced to the ludia, to look out for a married young major on the 15th February, and to gentleman (a clergyman in preference) Captain Fitzpatrick, the agent for 10 proceed to India in one of the ships the institution, two days afterof this season. As the geutleman em. wards. The captain, expecting to harks for India in ten days, you must sail, wished to have the articles of make an immediate choice. I have pre- agreement filled up; but how was Failed sa him to wait for your answer the major surprised to find he had until Thursday moruing; and if you have misunderstood the offer, that there thoughts of accepting the offer, it will be
were no fewer than five hundred necessary for you to come to town children of the orphan establishwithout the loss of a moment. You will probably brave until the beginning of
ment, and that the salary was conApril 10 get yourself ready, before wilich siderably less than he had first 1 should hope it would be in your power obstacle was easily removed, for,
stated : however, this unexpected to take orders; because, though that is uot an indispensable condition, it would since a larger field of usefulness yet be eligible on every account. I am
was thus opened to his view, Mr. aware that you are at present a batchelor, Brown signed the articles of agreeand it must rest wholly with yourself if ment, upon proviso that he could fou could acquire the other requisite for obtain orders, without which he the situation between this time and your was determined not to go. enharkation. I give this to your friend “ I waited,” says he, on Dr. Lo forward, and am, with esteem, Sir, Lowth, the bishop of London, “ Your's, &c.
asking to be ordained to go abroad: “ A, MITCHELL." he answered flatly, that he would * Loudon, Feb. 1785.”
never ordain another man to go The private papers of Mr. abroad; for that he had ordained Brown connect all the parts of the several for the colonies, who afternarrative.
wards remained lounging about the “ When this letter reached me town, a disgrace to the cloth. at college, I was just recovering « On coming out, I said to my from a long indisposition. There new friend the major, · Well, this were many objections immediately business is at an end ; to-niorrow occurred to me; I foresaw them I return to Cambridge.' He said, all at a rapid glance, and settled • let us call on the Bishop of Lanin my mind that I might decline daff (Dr. Watson); he is a liberal the offer with a good conscience: man, and will give us his advice.' above all, I was too young for We did so; and on his hearing the priest's orders, and without ordi- circumstances of our bad success nation I was resolved to accept of with my lord of London, he reno service or situation whatever. gretted our disappointment, wished I acquainted some of my serious well to the plan, and observed : friends with the import of the that if his grace of Canterbury saw major's letter, and my sentiments no impropriety in his ordaining upon it. They differed from me
me, after having been refused by in judgment ; they thought it was Dr. Lowth, he would do it most the voice of Providence, and that cheerfully; and he advised me to so unexpected and singular an ap- see the archbishop, which I lost plication ought not to be dis- no time in doing, and he most corregarded."
dially approved my undertaking; The Rev. Mr. Romaine also “ I set off for Cambridge on the wrote a letter to his parents, avow- following day, for the necessary ing that if the same offer had been papers which the bishop directed made to him at the same age, he me to procure : and with these I would gladly have accepted it. again waited on him the 25th : but
he appearing now to feel some he- ed them to experience some temsitation on the subject, I caught porary delay and embarrassment. at it, and said, “my lord, I am sa The journal says, (p. 166,) “ I am tisfied, I shall return to college; now to reside in Chelsea, and have for my views have been to the mi- very little money and food to pronistry, and without ordination I vide for my wife and self.” shall not go to India, whatever. During his stay in England, he offers are made me.' After a pause, performed the office of curate at however, he said he would ordain Chelsea church. His means of me, and that he would too have living comfortably and respectgiven me priest's orders the day ably while he had to remain in this following, if I had been of age to country, and of adequate prepa. receive them. He appointed the ration for the voyage to India, and next day for my examination, and the due discharge of his calling ordained me the day after." there, were consulted and extend.
On the second of March Mr. ed by the spontaneous and unBrowń was elected a correspond- ostentatious assistance of many sining member of the society for cere and closely attached friends ; promoting christian knowledge. time would fail us to enumerate From these reverend gentlemen them all, and it would displease he had presents of books, and many still living to have their every mark of attention ; and the names mentioned. Some of them, society addressed a recommenda- imitating the friends of Job after his tory letter, of which he was the recovery, made him gifts, and others subject, to the court of directors. volunteered small loans: their conSometime afterwards, when the tributions did not aim to confer court had received satisfactory tes- opulence, but to make the good timonials of his character and qua- of the day competent to a full lifications, they gave him three blessing; and Mr. Brown, as he hundred guineas for the expenses ultimately had the ability to make of the voyage, which were paid in returns with interest, treated all advance. The magnitude of this these friendly advances equally as aid exceeded his hopes ; the grate- loans, where he could shew this ful impression was never effaced. honorable remembrance of such
While some unexpected dif- kindness without offence. ficulties, and the necessity of The passage to Calcutta was waiting for a passage, detained him completed in seven months. On in England, he kept a journal of Sunday the 18th of June 1786, daily occurrences, from which we he entered upon his charge as have taken some passages relating chaplain of the military orphan to his intimate concerns. As we establishment. The interests of have seen, it was wished that the
so many children demanded his superintendant of the Bengal Or- zeal, and he watched over them phan establishment should go out a with affection. married man: to this, Mr. Brown Within a few days after arriving, saw no objection, and accordingly he was nominated chaplain to a offered his hand to a lady to whom brigade in Fort William. During he had been some time warmly at- the voyage, he had begun the tached, and who was every way study of Bengallee, and amidst worthy of him ; she was a Miss these active labours he continued Robinson, of very respectable con- the pursuit of this acquirement. nections in Hull. They were mar In 1787, he superadded to his ried on the 4th of March 1785, in engagements the services of the the expectation of proceeding at mission church. The orphan inonce to India ; but it appears that stitution was then altogether on insurmountable obstacles occasion.. the bank of the river opposite