1884 Letter Kiangnan Arsenal Shanghai China Missionary Doctor War
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1884 Letter Kiangnan Arsenal Shanghai China Missionary Doctor War:
1884 Letter Kiangnan Arsenal Shanghai China Missionary Doctor WarV.P. Suvoong Translating Medical Works into ChineseThis is a wonderful 8 page handwritten letter from a Chinese doctor, VP Suvoong, to Cornelius Rea Agnew.Suvoong had been educated in the US at seminary in Fairfax, Virginia and in medicine at Columbia.He worked at the Kiangnan Arsenal in Shanghai and his work there teaching and translating medical works into Chinese among other things.It is from 1884 and is in very good condition.It says in part:I have now finished translating 12 works into the Chinese language.They deal mostly in war or sciences.I translate only on Fridays and Saturdays and teach English 4 days, Sundays I am free.In my school at the present moment there are 24 scholars divided into 4 classes…I am at liberty to teach anything on principle, but I have not the boldness to introduce the Bible here for though it is not under ban, it is still regarded with suspicion.I am sure they would think me Jesuitical if I am too obstinate…At present I think no one in my school regards an idol anything more than an idol ought to be regarded a block of wood or stone.They have to worship it when told to do so but that is beyond my sphere…The Arsenal is very busy just now building ships and guns.We are preparing for the inevitable wars in the future.China has many weak points but she has some strong ones too, every year she will make herself more difficult to tackle for her enemies.There may be a great many years to come yet before she will take the offensive.She has suffered many humiliating defeats with her bows and arrows and she is now making up for lost time.In the old times Sparta would repeatedly war against a nation in fear they might learn her art of war.China’s bitter experiences taught her that hse must adopt her enemy’s art of war…The American guns are either smooth core cast iron, or cast iron with a wrought iron tube, having riling.They are either Parotes or Rodmans and both are out of date on the continent.The US is the most defenseless 1stclass nation in the world.But no fear for Uncle Sam is at peace with all the world…There are any quantities of toys in Shanghai, they come from France and Germany.The displays during these days by foreigners have as grand as any I have ever seen in the US.In fact Shanghai is no mean place in the East.One can get anything here except sterling honesty…Be sure to add me to your favorites list!