Madura (2)

Madura (2), a maritime district in the south of British India, in the presidency of Madras (q.v.), has an area of about 10,700 square miles, and a population of 1,790,000. Eastward from the shore runs a narrow ridge of sand and rocks, mostly dry, and .which almost connects Ceylon with the continent. Cotton is the chief commercial crop; and sugar-cane, betel-nut, and tobacco are also grown. In this district the "American Board" began its labors in 1834, and now sustains a very successful mission in fourteen stations. The Roman Catholics gained a strong hold here by the accommodation theory of Roberto dei Nobili in the opening of the 17th century. A vicariate, formerly a part of Pondicherry, was established for Madura in 1846, and is in the care of the Jesuits, who recommenced labors there in 1836. The principal town is Madura, on the river Vygat, with several noteworthy public buildings, and the seat of a Roman Catholic and a Protestant mission. Madura, in former days, was the capital of a kingdom, the center of South Indian culture and learning. See Grundemann, Missions-Atlas, No. 14 and 15. SEE INDIA.

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