Excerpt from Heroes of the Boer War
Up to this time, nobody had troubled about the religion of the native; but, under the British sovereignty, the London Missionary Society became exceedingly active. In India, where politics and religion go hand in hand, discretion is exacted... from the missionaries, and thus an effective curb is put on extravagant religious zeal; but here, where they met with no resistance, except the reserve of the Boer and his strict supervision and discipline over his domestic slaves, they soon outran all discretion and became a most disturbing in¿uence. Add to these conditions the Boer's objection to the English language, and you get a fair idea of the opposition and even enmity that was bound to be the result of the situation.
In order to increase their importance as against the Boers, and to ingratiate themselves with the authorities, the missionaries eagerly lent an ear to any idle gossip, in some instances going so far as to accuse the Boers of the most heartless cruelties towards the slaves: needless to say, without the slightest foundation. A great number of men and women were brought befor the circuit assizes. The charges were proved to be silly stories with no foundation on fact. But, for long years afterwards, colonists spoke of the indignity to which they had been -subjected by being brought to trial on such ¿imsy pretexts, and these sessions come to be known as the black circuit.' Impressions are apt to be written in stone instead of sand when they fall upon natures of such depth as that of the Boer. And so it happened that he could never rid himself of the belief that the mission aries were spies and unjust, counsellors, where his interests were con cerned, and that the Government always sided with them and always to his disadvantage. The mischief which these exaggerations, not to use a harder and less euphonious term, did in England is only now being realized.
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