Page:Christianity in China, Tartary, and Thibet Volume II.djvu/174

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IGO CHRISTIANITY IX CHINA, ETC. severance of rather liicci and liis cunipaniuns were crowned "with the most brilliant success. Supported by the authority of the emperor, they might henceforth labour in peace for the conversion of this immense Chinese empire. The lame of the signal favour granted to tlicsc strangers from the West soon spread abroad; and since in China, as in most other countries, prosperity has u wonderful effect in increasing the numlicr of people's friends, friends now came from all (quarters, ministers and high dignitaries, and mandarins great and small, to offer their congratulations to the poor missionaries, and declare how much the empire was honoured by their brilliant [)res('nce. There was nothing going on for a few days but ft-tes and banquets, and ovations of all kinds. Father Uicci, however, did his utmost to get released from these ceremonial visitings, as they ab- sorbed so much valuable time that should have been devoted to the preaching of the gospel, lie established in the house regular conferences, to which the most famous literary men of Pekin came to hear him uiiluld the truths of Christianity. The high position he had attained did not make him forget that he was equally " a debtor to all;" and though he received his more dis- tinguished visitors with courtesy and good will, it was remarked that he was no less accessible to those of a low class in society, and liked to hold long conversations with them. The oral instruction in which he was daily engaged, did not either make him forget what great influence books might have on a people so fond of reading, and amongst Avhom literature has always been so highly honoured. Aided by some famous literati, with whom

he had become intimate, he composed several works