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INTRODUCTION.*

SEVERAL of my friends having expressed a wish to be possessed of copies of my Translation of the Vedas, and Controversies with those Brahmans who are advocates for idolatry, I have collected for republication such of those tracts as I could find, either among my own papers or those of my friends who happened to have brought them from India, and now offer them to the public in their original form.

1.

I feel induced to set forth here, briefly, the substance of these writings, to facilitate the comprehension, of their purport, as being foreign to the generality of European readers. The Vedas (or properly speaking, the spiritual parts of them) uniformly declare, that man is prone by nature, or by habit, to reduce the object or objects of his veneration and worship (though admitted to be unknown) to tangible forms, ascribing to such objects attributes, supposed excellent according to his own notions: whence idolatry, gross or refined, takes its origin, and perverts the true course of the intellect to vain fancies. These authorities, therefore, hold out precautions against framing a deity after 2. human imagination, and recommend mankind to direct all researches towards the surrounding objects, viewed either collectively or individually, bearing in mind their regular, wise and wonderful combinations and arrangements, since such researches cannot fail, they affirm, to lead an unbiassed mind to a notion of a Supreme Existence, who so 3. sublimely designs and disposes of them, as is everywhere traced through the universe. The same .Vedas represent rites and external worship addressed to the planets and elementary objects, or personified abstract 4. notions, as well as to defied heroes, as intended for persons of mean/ capacity; but enjoin spiritual devotion, as already described, benevolence, and self-control, as the only means of securing bliss.

London, July 23, 1832.

RAMMOHUN ROY.

P. S. In all the following Translations, except the Cena Upanishad, the mode of spelling Sanskrit words in English, adopted by Dr. J. B. Gilchrist, has been observed.

*This Introduction appears in the 'Translation of several principal Books, Passages, and Texts of the Veds, and of some controversial works on Brahmunical Theology' which Rammohun Roy published in London in 1832.-ED.

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OF THE

PRACTICAL OPERATION

OF THE

JUDICIAL AND REVENUE SYSTEMS OF INDIA

AND OF THE

General Character and Condition of its Native Inhabitants

AS SUBMITTEd in Evidence TO THE Authorities in EnGLAND

WITH

NOTES AND ILLUSTRATIONS.

ALSO

A BRIEF PRELIMINARY SKETCH OF THE ANCIENT AND
MODERN BOUNDARIES, AND OF THE HISTORY
OF THAT COUNTRY.

Elucidated by a Map.

BY

RAJAH RAMMOHUN ROY

LONDON:

SMITH ELDER & Co., CORNHILL,

1832.

THE Select Committee of the House of Commons which was appointed in February, 1831, and re-appointed in June to consider the renewal of the Company's Charter, invited Raja Rammohun Roy to appear before it. He declined this request, but tendered his evidence in the form of successive "Communications to the Board of Control," which besides duly appearing in the Blue Books were published by him in a separate volume, entitled Exposition of the practical operation of the Judicial and Revenue Systems of India, etc. We have omitted the map which the author annexed to this volume.-ED.

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