Page:Christianity in China, Tartary, and Thibet Volume II.djvu/354

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page needs to be proofread.

310 CIIKISTIANITV IN CHINA, ETC. tired and sought an abode elsewhere. The cstahli^h- ment outside the town, in the cemetery where Fatlier liicei was buried, was preserved by the same means. We have seen with what zealous haste the astronomers ami mathematicians presented a new calendar to tlw chief of the rebels on the very day of his erjtranee into IV'kin, and they were now no less anxious to be in time with the Tartar government. The same deputation set off again with the same ceremony ; antl when they were asked wliat they had to oflVr to tiieir master, they re- plied, We bring the ancient calendar «>f the Celestial Kmpire, now hap[)ily become yours, fully revised and corrected." " We know," said the Tartar, '* that your calendar is full of mistakes, and we have been told that it has been put in order by Tang-Jo-^^'an, the celebrated astro- nomer from the West. Let Tang-Jo- Wan be called." That was not at all what the officers of " Celestial Literature" desired. They had intended to supplant Adam Schall, whose superiority had long been a griev- ance to them, and they had now the vexation of hearing him proclaimed as the reformer of their calendar. Li the month of September of this year, 1G44, an eclipse of the sun took place, which afforded to the Tartars an incontestable proof of the knowledge of the European missionaries and the ignorance of the pretended official astronomers of the empire ; after having found that only the calculations of Tang-Jo-Wan Avere correct, they appointed him master and president of all that concerned celestial literature. This decree Avas drawn up, presented by the Court of Rites, and duly signed by the young Emperor Cliun-Tche, in the month of

February, 1645.