Page:Christianity in China, Tartary, and Thibet Volume II.djvu/250

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236 CHRISTIANITY IN CHINA, ETC. had clandestinely introduced themselves into the empire, and were attempting to eli'ect a revolution in it. " Do honest and virtuous men," they said, " thus forsake their families and their property to go running about the world and living in nnknown countries? A person who lives near the residence of the missionaiies lias declared that several times in the year, there is held in that house, under pretext of religion and prayer, a numerous assembly of men and women, who afterwards return to their own houses before daylight; that to every new convert to Cliristianity they give five ounces of silver, and put them down in a list, under strange unknown names, and that they also accustom them to trace on their foreheads a particular character, doubtless intended as a rallying sign for the time of insurrection; and that finally their houses arc filled with arms and munitions of war." The mandarin Kio- Tchin collected carefully all these insinuations, and drew up from them an accusation at once violent and treacherous; which he, in his rpiality of assessor of the Supreme Court of Rites, addressed to the emperor, in the month of May, 1616. lie insisted much on their having fraudulently introduced to the Chinese a religion contrary to that of their forefathers and the sages of antiquity; and he came to the conclusion, that in order to prevent the missionaries and their partisans from increasing to a still more dangerous extent, it would be advisable to put them to death. The presentation of this memorial, though made very secretly, did not remain unknown to the Chris- tians; as a mandarin, who was a friend of the assessor and of Dr. Micliel, communicated the fact to the latter,

and he immediately gave information to the mission-