Buchanan, Claudius

Buchanan, Claudius D.D., vice-provost of the College of Fort William, in Bengal, well known for his exertions in promoting an ecclesiastical establishment in India, and for his active support of missionary and philanthropic labors, was born on the 12th of March, 1766, at Cambuslang, a village near Glasgow. At the age of twenty-one he made his way to London, where he succeeded in attracting the attention of the Rev. John Newton, by whose influence he was sent to Cambridge, where he was educated at the expense of Henry Thornton, Esq., whom he afterward repaid. Buchanan went out to India in 1796 as one of the East India Company's chaplains, and, on the institution of the College of Fort William in Bengal in 1800, he was made professor of the Greek, Latin, and English classics, and vice-provost. During his residence in India he published his Christian Researches in Asia (5th ed. Lond. 1812, 8vo), a book which attracted considerable attention at the time, and which has gone through a number of editions. In 1804 and 1805 he gave various sums of money to the universities of England and Scotland, to be awarded as prizes for essays on the diffusion of Christianity in India. He returned to England in 1808, and during the remainder of his life continued, through the medium of the pulpit and the press, to enforce his views. His reply to the statements of Charles Buller, Esq., M.P., on the worship of the idol Juggernaut, which was addressed to the East India Company, was laid on the table of the House of Commons in 1813 and printed. He died at Broxbourne, Herts, February 9, 1815, being at the period of his death engaged in superintending an edition of the Scriptures for the use of the Syrian Christians who inhabit the coast of Malabar. He published also The Colonial Ecclesiastical Establishment (2d ed. Lond. 1803, 8vo): — Sermons (Edinb. 1812, 8vo);—An Apology for promoting Christianity in India (Lond. 1813, 8vo). His life, by the Rev. Hugh Pearson, was published in 1819 (Lond. 2 vols. 8vo; 5th ed. 1846).

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