পাতা:রামতনু লাহিড়ী ও তৎকালীন বঙ্গসমাজ.djvu/৪৭৭

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BY THE RIGIIT IION.ROFESSOR MAX MULLER:

RAMTON00 LAHIRI

 Ramtonod was born in 1913, and must therefore have been older than Debendranath Tagore, who is generally con. sidered as the Nestor of the Brahma-Samaj

 He was a pupil of David Hare, who had undertaken the philanthropic work of educating native youthsand after spend. ing a few years at his school, he was admitted into the Hindu college at Calcutta, which was established in 181; as the first fruit of the annual vote of £10,000 for educational pur poses insisted on by the English Parliament. The teacher who chiefy influenced the youngmen was D. Rozario, who, though branded by the clergy as an infidel and as a devil of the Thomas Paine school,was worshipped by his pupils as an incarnation of goodness aud kindness. It was Christian morality, as preached by D. Rozario, that appealed most strongly to the heart. of Ramtonoo and his fellow-pupils, grandfathers of the present generation of Indian reformers. Rantonoo became a model among his friends in all matters pertaining to morality and conscience, penitence and sincerity being the watchwords of his,early career, vice and hypocrisy the constant gbjects of his denunciation, both among his equals and among those of higher tank and authority. Even the founder of the Brahma:Samaj did not escape his reproof, on account of what he considered want of moral courage to act up to his convictions. As to himself he denounced caste as a great social and moral evil, and silent submission to superstitious customs .as reprehensible weak. ness. In order to shame those who denounced beef-eating as sinful, he and his friends would actually parade the street; with beef in their hands, inviting the people to take it and eat it. The Brahmanical thread which was retained by the mem: bers of the Brahma-Samaj as lateas 1861, was openly dis carded by hign as early, as 1851.' And We must remember that in thpse days such open apostasy was almost a question of life or death, and that Rammohun Roy was in danger of

assassination in the very tets of Calcutta. It is true that


  • Ramtonoo is probably meant for Ramtanu, boly of Rame, but when a name has once become familiar in the modern Bengali form, I do not always like to put it back into its classical Sanskrit form.