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*' We will not say her life was brief 

For noble death is length of days ; 
The sun that ripens autumn's sheaf 

Poured on her summer's wealth of rays.' ' 



^-' ■^'^ 




^ -i^^ 

Copyright, 1888, 
By Roberts Brothers. 

©ntbersits ^regg: 
John Wilson and Son, Cambridge. 


The most difficult task of my life lay before me 
when I undertook to write the Life of Anandabai 
Joshee. In copying letters or using material fur- 
nished by those who loved her, I have been 
obliged to moderate the terms of affection and 
admiration which would have seemed extravagant 
to those who never saw her, or saw her only after 
her star "drooped toward its setting." 

" I have never seen any one who gave me so 
distinct an impression of being ' high-born/ " said 
a lady who knew her slightly. It was however 
not the record which stretched over two thousand 
years, which gave dignity to Anandabai's mien, 
but the high-born consciousness, never absent, 
that in spirit she was the "child of God." 

Without the generous aid of Mrs. Carpenter of 
Koselle, New Jersey, and of Dr. Bodley, Dean of 
the Woman's Medical College of Pennsylvania, the 


two friends who made it possible for Anandabai 
to seek an education in this country, this book 
could not have been written. Its rapid sale will 
reward them in the best way for all the self- 
sacrifice, hard labor, and bitter grief which their 
devotion has involved, for we hope through that, 
to aid the projects of her friend and cousin, the 
Pundita Eamabai Sarasvati. 

Our climate is not friendly to the Hindu. Al- 
ready the cheek of Eamabai has grown pale and 
her voice weak. If we love her and would aid 
her, we must speed her on her way. 

I have been obliged to allude to the conduct 
and published writings of Gopal Yinayak Josliee 
because they were involved in the history of his 
wife. I have done it as lightly and as briefly as 
possible, and I wish to say, that I hardly hold 
him responsible for the letters to the " Index " 
and "The Open Court," so great appears to have 
been the excitement under which they were writ- 
ten. The last of these letters is full of mistakes 
'apart from such statements as might be mere mat- 
ters of opinion. For instance, he states that he 
and Dr. Joshee sailed from New York Sept. 9th, 
1886. But on this day Dr. Joshee was in the Hos- 
pital at Philadelphia and she did not sail until 
October. Still farther he speaks of receiving 


" eighty or ninety " pounds, for his homeward 
journey from Mr. Pattison in London ; hut as 
eighteen was all that was required to make up 
the passage money, " eighteen or nineteen " would 
seem the more likely sum. 

He alludes also in this letter to "prejudices" 
against the " Christians " and meditations upon 
the "low character" of the English, as if these 
were shared by Dr. Joshee ; hut this we all know 
was not possible. 

One day, soon after her arrival in America, 
Anandabai amused herself at Eoselle by writing 
her own " mental photograph " in one of the 
Albums commonly sold for that purpose. The 
student of psychology will be interested in com- 
paring this suggestive sketch with the "psycho- 
metric impression" elsewhere alluded to. 

In a letter written since his wife's death Mr. 
Joshee thus alludes to the contents of the eleven 
trunks which Anandabai carried back to India. 

" I have given the contents of Dr. Joshee's boxes to 
an English school, the founder of which Dr. Joshee 
greatly admired. They are arranged in a nice glass 
case and I hope they will be better cared for than 
they could be by me. It was a painful thing to see 
them all again." 


This school is probably at Poonah, and here 
I suppose Mr. Joshee deposited all the North 
American pottery, which Anandabai was so anx- 
ious to obtain. 

It was not until I had nearly finished my work 
that I learned that the acquaintance between 
Eamabai and her cousin began through the cor- 
dial entreaty of the Joshees that she would come 
and live with them at Serampore at a time when 
she was bitterly persecuted. 

The following letter will explain itself. 

553 South 16th St., Philadelphia, 
Jan. 16th, 1888. 

My dear Mrs. Dall, — Dear Doctor Joshee was 
staying in Serampore when she invited me to come 
to her after my husband's sudden death. 

I did not know her personally at that time, but had 
some correspondence with her. 

My husband being of low caste, my marrying him 
was altogether against the country's custom, and we 
were despised and shunned by our most intimate 
friends and relatives. 

So much was this the case, that my husband's own 
brother would not write to him for fear of losing 

Under such circumstances, we had no intercourse 
with many, and were too proud to ask any favors. I 


therefore resolved to do what I could to take care of 
my baby and myself independently of all relatives or 
friends. I made this promise to my dear husband 
before he left me. Therefore I did not accept Mrs. 
Joshee's kind invitation to go to her in my distress. 
I was very grateful to her all the same, for she was 
the only person in the whole country who cared for 
me, such an outcast had I become in the eyes of my 
people. Nor shall I ever cease to be grateful to her 
for this kindness. 

With all good wishes for the New Year, 
I am, sincerely yours, 


It gives me great pleasure to print this letter, 
for Gopal must have united with Anandabai in 
giving this invitation, and the action proves him 
to have been at this time what his wife always 
believed him to be, — a liberal and tender-hearted 

It must be obvious to all my readers, that in a 
Memoir prepared as this has been, there must be 
more than the usual liability to error in detail. I 
have done all that I could to prevent such errors, 
and as the greater part of the book consists of 
Anandabai's own letters, I hope that no serious 
error is likely to appear. 

Since the Memoir went to press, I have heard 


from Mrs. Carpenter and tlie Pundita Eamabai, 
that there is every reason to suppose that Anan- 
dabai was betrothed to Gopal, by a ceremony con- 
sidered as irrevocable as marriage, when she went 
away with him from Kalyan in the company of 
her ' grandmother. 

Mrs. Carpenter thinks that Anandabai told her 
this, and the Pundita, who knew nothing of her 
cousin at that time, is sure that her departure 
would not have been permitted if she had not 
been betrothed. 

All this may have been so, but if it were it 
was never even hinted in my conversations with 
Dr. Joshee. At that time she expected to send 
me on her return to India some significant ex- 
tracts from her family history, and a brief outline 
of her own life. I was not very anxious about 
details, but tried to understand fully the character 
of her mind, and her individual emancipation from 
tradition and custom. 

She said nothing about betrothal. If betrothed, 
it is usual for a Hindu woman to pass into the 
care of her husband's family. Nothing was said 
about this, only the bitter cry, many times re- 
peated, " I thought I should never learn anything 
more, and I would rather have died." She never 
said, nor did I ever ask, whether she and her 


grandmother lived in the same house with Gopal 
previous to her marriage, and as it is now too late 
to consult Mr. Joshee, I must content myself with 
stating the opinion of Mrs. Carpenter and the 
Pundita Eamabai, and leave the text for the 
present unaltered. 

In his memoranda of the last hours of his wife, 
Mr. Joshee mentions that the funeral services ex- 
tended over thirteen days. It is customary after 
cremation in Hindustan to scatter the ashes of 
the deceased to the "four winds." 

With some difficulty and against the wishes of 
his people, but doubtless with a strong desire to 
bear witness to Anandabai's devotion to this coun- 
try, Gopal gathered the ashes of his wife together 
and they are now on their way to America. The 
box which contains them will be buried in the 
Eighmie lot in the Cemetery at Poughkeepsie, 
where a suitable stone will tell the short story of 
Anandabai's life. 

In copying the letters in which Mrs. Joshee 
relates her dreams, or alludes to her early expe- 
riences, I have felt obliged to confine myself 
strictly to her own words, without attempting 
comment or explanation. May this little book — 
however weak and imperfect the picture which 
it presents — stimulate all hearts to noble charity, 


and convince whoever has hitherto doubted, that 
God never leaves any heart, whether heathen or 
civilized, without a possible witness to his Being 
and his Nature. 


1603 "0" St., Washington, D. C, 
March, 1888. 


Written in Mrs. Carpenter's Album at Roselhf Sept. Bd, 1883, 
by Anandabai Joshee. 

What is your favorite 

1. Color? White. 

2. Rower ? The Rose. 

3. Tree ? The Mango. 

4. Object in Nature ? Mountains. 

5. Hour ? Sunrise and set. 

6. Season ? Spring. 

7. Perfume ? Jasmine. 

8. Gem 1 Diamond. 

9. Style of beauty ? Perfection of form and manner. 

10. Name, — male and female ? Rama, Tara, Annie, 

Gopal, Vishnu, and Chrishna. 

11. Painter? Hove all. 

12. Musician ? Those who play on the violin and lyre. 

13. Piece of architecture ? The Taj Mahal. 

14. Poet ? Pope, Manu, and Kalidasa. 

15. Poetess? Muktabai and Janabai. 

16. Prose author? Goldsmith, Macaulay, Addison, Shas- 

tree Chiptoonka. 

17. Character in History ? Richard Coeur de Lion. 

18. Book to take up for an hour ? The Bhagavat-Gita. 
19.* What book, not a Bible, would you part with last ? 

The History of the World. 
20. What epoch would you prefer to live in ? The 


21. Where would you prefer to live ? In Eoselle now, 

hereafter in Heaven. 

22. "What is your favorite amusement ? Heading. 

23.* What is your favorite occupation ? Whatever is 
necessary to the common comfort. 

24. What is your favorite trait of character ? Sincerity. 

25. What trait do you most detest ? Dishonesty and 

26.* If not yourself, whom would you like to be ? No 

27.* What is your idea of happiness ? Faith in God. 
28.* What is your idea of misery? To follow one's own 


29. What is your hete noir ? Slavery and Dependence. 

30. What is your ideal pleasure 1 To be rewarded for 

what I do. 
31.* What is your distinguishing characteristic? I have 
not yet found out. 

32. That of your husband ? Benevolence. 

33. What is the sublimest passion ? Love. 

34. What are the sweetest words ? Love, charity, truth 

and hope. 

35. What are the saddest ? Lost, forsaken. 

36. What is your aim ? To be useful. 

37. What is your motto ? The Lord will provide. 

* I have preserved this photograph in these pages mainly 
for the sake of directing attention to the remarkable answers to 
questions 19, 23, 26, 27, 28, and 31. These taken by them- 
selves draw the picture plainly enough. Kalidasa mentioned 
in the answer to the 14th is the most famous of Indian drama- 
tists — the author of Sacontala. I have not been able to find 
any account of Muktabai, Janabai, or Shastree Chiptoonka. 




DaugMer of Gunputrao Amritaswar Joshee and Gungabai 
Joshee his wife. 

Born in Poonali, India, March. 31st, 1865. Child name, 
Yumna, popularly Jumna, or " Daughter of the Sun." 

Married Gopal Vinayak Joshee, March 31st, 1874. Wife 
name Anandabai, or " Joy of my heart." 

Sailed from Calcutta for New York, April 7th, 1883, being 
the first unconverted high-caste Hindu woman to leave 
her country. 

Landed in New York, June 4th, 1883. 

Graduated from the Woman's Medical College of Pennsyl- 
vania, March 11th, 1886, being the first Hindu woman 
to receive the degree of medicine in any country. 

Appointed June 1st, 1886,to thepost of Physician-in-charge 
of the Female Wards of the Albert Edward Hospital, 
Kolhapur, India. 

Sailed from New York, Oct. 9th, 1886. 

Died in Poonah, India, Feb. 26th, 1887. 




Pbeface , iii 

"Mental Photograph" of Dr. Joshee written 

BY herself in 1883 xi 

Synopsis of her Life xiii 

Memoir 15 


Full-length Portrait of Dr. Joshee in her 

Mahratta Dress Frontispiece 


The country which we call India, better known 
by the more familiar name of Hindustan, stretches 
from the Himmaleh Mountains to the Indian 
Ocean, and from the empire of Burmah to Af- 
ghanistan. It is eighteen hundred miles long, and 
fifteen hundred wide. 

In the last half of the seventeenth century, 
under its great Mogul emperor Aurung-Zebe, 
Hindustan was divided into thirty-three provinces, 
which very nearly correspond to the thirty-three 
States recognized under the present British su- 
premacy. To this great country, so divided, thirty- 
three different languages are popularly ascribed. 
These have a common foundation in the Sanscrit, 
but differ in their construction to such an extent 
that those who are native to the country are 
unwilling to call them dialects. Hindustanee, 
which is everywhere spoken, originated at the time 
of the Mahometan conquest, and was called by 
the Moguls Urdu Zab^n, or " camp language." 


It is a sort of lingua franca, and is used in 
all the provinces in addition to the local speech. 
In that part of the country called the Deccan, and 
in the south of Hindustan, six or eight languages 
are spoken, such as the Tamil and the Teling^, 
which are not supposed by Colebrooke or Campbell 
to have any foundation in the Sanscrit. 

If the Hindus originally moved southward from 
central Asia bringing the Sanscrit with them, they 
found a native population south of the Ganges, 
and it is probable that the language of south- 
ern India represents that then spoken by the 

In the northwest of India, just south of the 
Punjaub and between Delhi and Scinde, is a coun- 
try called Kajpootana. This country originally 
consisted of eight principalities, stretching over 
wide deserts and through mountain passes, nur- 
turing a sturdy population able to endure cold 
and hunger, and standing in such a relation to the 
rest of Hindustan as the townsmen of Galilee once 
stood toward the people of Palestine. Until the 
British took possession of the country they were 
called " robbers and murderers." Yet in the town 
now called Kajapore, at the close of the fifteenth 
century, the great religious sect called the Sikhs 
was founded by Nanac Shah. The Sikhs worship 


one pure invisible God ; they have a sacred scrip- 
ture, which they keep in a small temple sur- 
rounded by the v^aters of the Golden Lotus. 
Their creed was intended by l^anac as a compro- 
mise between that of the Brahmins and that of 
Mahomet, and it is very singular that it should 
have taken root among the Eajpoots, because they, 
of all the peoples of the country, remained uncon- 
quered by the Moguls. The name " Sikhs" had been 
once confined to the Eajpoots, it means "lions,'* 
and had been given to them as the first military 
order among the Hindus. When religious perse- 
cution gave the followers of Nanac an opportu- 
nity to show their mettle, the name of " lions," or 
Sikhs, was transferred from their oppressors to 
themselves, and is still retained. 

To speak properly of the history of the peo- 
ples or languages of Hindustan requires a pro- 
found scholarship, which I am far from claiming ; 
but a few words concerning it were necessary 
before we could enter on the life of Anandabai 
Joshee. It must be understood clearly in advance 
that the Hindus are not one people, do not speak 
one language, and that the customs and history of 
one province are not the customs and history of 
any other. The Sikhs and the Eajpoots are well 
known by name to the students of the history of 



British India, but their doings have been eclipsed 
during the last two centuries by the prowess of the 
Mahrattas. The origin of this people is wholly 
obscure to Europeans ; but Anandabai asserted that 
they themselves possessed the records of two thou- 
sand years of independent existence. They are 
supposed to be an offshoot of the mountaineers of 
Eajpootan, driven south by stress of famine and 
war. They first became known to Europeans a 
little after the year 1300, but they were w^ell es- 
tablished in the possession of the great city of 
Poonah at that time, and were carrying on de- 
structive wars with other native States. The Mah- 
rattas assert that they were never conquered by 
the Moguls. 

There is nothing in the original Hindu scrip- 
tures to require the seclusion or subjection of 
women. The Hindus assert that this originated 
after the Mahometan conquest, in consequence 
of the licentious boldness of the Moslem sol- 
diery; but there is evidence that it began to be 
practised as early as the eighth century. If this 
were so, the zenana probably originated in the 
brutalities of the early internecine contests, and 
was confirmed not more by the violence than 
the habits of the Mahometan conquerors. It 
would have been necessary to secure respect for 


women among the new-comers by secluding them, 
as they themselves secluded their own women. 
The name of Mahrattas was given to this people 
because, when they broke away from the original 
home of the Eajpoots, driven by war or famine or 
the Cossack's love of adventure, they settled in 
a district of Dowlatabad, to the south of Bombay, 
which was called Mharat. 

In the early period of its history, the Mahratta 
people seem to have been governed in a feudal 
fashion. It was the custom of the reigning Eajah 
to reward his favorites for any service rendered, 
by large grants of land, or delegated sovereign 
powers. By degrees there grew up a nobility 
bearing the state of princes, sometimes indepen- 
dent of the Government, sometimes tributary to it, 
but for the most part true to its supremacy. 

It was not until 1818, when the successive 
Eajahs of the Mahrattas had been in turn the 
prisoners of the successive ministers of State for 
more than a century, that, worn out by intestine 
divisions, the people asked the protection of the 
British Government, and surrendered a large part 
of the district of Poonah. Tive hundred years 
ago the reigning Eajah, in a hot contest with 
a neighboring province, trusted the conduct of 
his forces to a young general of the Joshee family 


not yet twenty-one years of age. Success fol- 
lowed success, until his sovereign finally recalled 
him, to endow him with a palace in Poonah and a 
principality of sixty villages. He came back from 
the field to be received with flaming torches and 
gorgeous processions, and was allowed an hour's 
stay with his young wife. He knelt, kissed his 
sovereign's hand, departed, and lost his life in 
the next fray. He died before he was twenty- 
one, and left an only child, from whom Anandabai 
was descended. Her father was Gunputrao Amri- 
taswar Joshee, her mother was Gungabai Durbagai 
Joshee ; and as women do not take the names of 
their husbands in India, it is evident that the father 
and mother were descended from the same stem. 

If I understand properly the record I took 
down from her lips, Anandabai was the sixth of 
ten children. Of her four brothers, two died 
before her. Of the five sisters, the first and 
fourth are dead. 

There are still living her brothers, 

Damodhar Ganesh-Joshee and 

Vinayak Ganesh Joshee, as w^ell as the three 

Kasheebai Ganesh Joshee, 

Waranusheebai Oomabai Onkar, and 

Sundrabai Ganesh Joshee. 


The steady insertion of the name of Ganesh 
doubtless bears some relation to the mother's 
family ; and Waranusheebai, a sister older than 
the subject of our story, was married, and is a 
widow in easy circumstances. 

At Poonah, in the Bombay Presidency, in the 
very palace that had been given by the Eajah to 
her victorious ancestor, there was born on the 
31st of March, 1865, a little brown baby, whose 
future no one suspected. On the eleventh day 
she was called Yamuna, or Yumna, Daughter of 
the Sun, after the sacred river popularly called 
Jumna, — a name which she bore until her mar- 
riage. The little that we know of her childhood 
only piques our desire to know more. Her father 
is described by her cousin Eamabai as "a rich 
landholder of Kalyan, a town a little to the north 
of Bombay, where he was warmly regarded by the 
high caste people." The palace at Poonah was 
still in the possession of her grandparents and an 
uncle of her mother's, who was a distinguished 
Hindu physician. 

It was to avail herself of this physician's ser- 
vices that Gungabai had gone to Poonah a short 
time before her daughter's birth. Yamuna grew 
up between Poonah and Kalyan. She was from 
the first a great pet of her father, and her hap- 


piest hours were passed upon Ms knee, under a 
great plane-tree in the Kalyan garden, where he 
went to rest every day after dinner. He owned 
many villages, and for the benefit of his servants 
and peasantry and after the manner of European 
landholders, he kept a chaplain. It was the 
duty of the priest who held this office to offer 
prayer and sacrifice, to instruct the people, and 
also to cleanse the shrines and images of the gods. 
Yamuna had never thought of the priest in a seri- 
ous way, and was only four years old when she 
sat one day playing with her dolls and watching 
him as he washed the little images of jade, 
bitumen, or metal, and oiled them carefully be- 
fore setting them back on their shrines. Suddenly 
it flashed into her mind that there was no differ- 
ence between these images and her dolls. They 
did not move; they lay passive in the hand of 
the priest. They did not cry like children when 
he rubbed them hard, nor rejoice when he left 
them to themselves. Very eagerly she waited for 
her father to finish his dinner, and then seizing 
his hand ran away to the bench under the plane- 

" Papa," she exclaimed, hardly waiting to get 
her breath, " how can a god bear to have his face 
washed by a man ? " And then, not waiting for 


any answer from the astonished Gunputrao, she 
went on to tell him what she had seen, and how 
the images lay in the priest's hand as if they had 
been her dolls. 

"Those images are not gods/' replied her father; 
" they are made to hold the thoughts of men to 
God while they pray. Some of them represent 
the love, and some the justice of God, and some 
only his creative power. My little daughter, can 
you pray to God without looking at any of those 
images ? " 

" Yes, indeed ! " replied the child. 
"Then you need never think of them again," 
was the reply ; " they will be of no use to you." 

"And I never did," continued his daughter, very 
simply, when she told the story. 

The only other incident relating to this period 
of her life which is known to me has a truly Ori- 
ental flavor. Anandabai was neither a spiritualist 
nor a theosophist ; but from her earliest childhood 
she dwelt apart, believed in a spiritual world which 
was even nearer to her than the world she touched, 
and held herself always ready to listen to " occult" 
voices and accept " occult " experiences. 

There was in her home an immense genealogi- 
cal record of the Joshees. It stretched over two 
thousand years, had been kept by the head of 


the family in each generation, and was illustrated 
by painted pictures of the costumes worn by its 
heroes, and the events briefly described on it. I 
imagine it was a roll. It was written on a sacred 
paper kept expressly for such uses, from loJiich 
no word could ever he effaced, emulating in this 
respect the tablets of the recording angel. As it 
was always kept under lock and key, Anandabai 
thought that she had never seen it, and knew noth- 
ing about it, when she had the following dream. 
She had gone to bed as usual, at some time be- 
fore she was five years old, when there suddenly 
appeared to her the figure of a young and hand- 
some man, dressed in a manner, and carrying 
weapons, that she had never seen. 

" Who are you ? " she said, like any frightened 
child, when he fixed his eyes upon her. 

" Do you not know who I am ? " he said 


" Go then to your father," resumed the soldier, 
" and tell him to make you acquainted with my 
life ; for it is you who are to tread in my foosteps." 

At this she waked, bathed in perspiration and 
trembling. In the morning she went to her 
father and earnestly entreated him to tell her 
about the " god " whom she had seen. Gunputrao 


was unable to identify the figure from Yamuna's 
description, but in the midst of many words, which 
I have forgotten, the soldier had said, — ' 

"It is ungrateful to be ignorant of him whose 
blood flows in your veins." 

Prom these words Gunputrao felt certain that 
it was one of his own ancestors who had appeared 
to his daughter, and he reverently opened his 
family roll. At last they came to a figure that 
Yamuna recognized at once as that of the man 
who had appeared to her. It was that of the 
young general who had founded the fortunes of 
her family, and in whose palace she had been 
born. From that time Gunputrao was even more 
tender toward his daughter; he not only gave her 
whatever she desired, but he paid special atten- 
tion to her education. 

f. The Mahrattas have never secluded their women ; 
they walk the streets as securely and openly as 
those of Europe or America. Anandabai thought 
this was because they had never been exposed to 
the insolence of a Mogul conqueror; but perhaps 
it was also because the tribe began its existence 
in rough mountain passes, away from the " busy 
haunts of men." 

It was when she was living a free life like that 
of a little country child in America, but with the 


character and intellectual development only pos- 
sible to an American cHld of twice lier age, that 
her first opportunity came to her. Gopal Vinyak 
Joshee was appointed a clerk in the Postal De- 
partment of Bombay in 1870, when Yamuna was 
only five years old. As he was a stranger in those 
parts, he eagerly sought the acquaintance of the 
head of his own family in that neighborhood. 
Gunputrao was an educated man. He had organ- 
ized a school in one of the large rooms of the 
house in which he lived, and saw at once that 
Gopal's knowledge of Sanscrit would be of great 
advantage to Yamuna. 

I never learned at what hours, or in what man- 
ner, Gopal taught; but Yamuna remained under 
his care for nearly three years, when Gopal was 
promoted to be post-master at Alibag, with an 
increase of salary, and at once prepared to leave 
the neighborhood. Yamuna's grief could not be 
repressed. "I thought I should never learn any 
more," she said ; " and I would rather have died." 
Forgetting her love for father and mother, indif- 
ferent to brothers and sisters, she begged permis- 
sion to go away with Gopal. Her father was 
sorely puzzled. Although only eight years of age, 
Yamuna was now marriageable. 

It is not likely, from what followed, that her 


mother approved of her studies, or her removal 
from her father's house; but the subservient po- 
sition of a Hindu wife prevented her expressing 
any opinion. In this emergency, the grandmother 
from Poonah — the mother's mother — came to 
Yamuna's aid. "I will go with her," she said, 
"and I will shield her as if she were my own." 
She did go, and as long as she lived her grand- 
child was reverently grateful for the service. 

I have not been able to ascertain the exact 
locality of Alibag ; I suppose it was in the Bom- 
bay Presidency, and it must have been a small 
native town, as the salary Gopal received as post- 
master was but little more than that given him 
as a clerk in Bombay. It was probably a Mah- 
ratta village not far from Kalyan, or the mother 
of Gungabai would hardly have been willing to 
go to it. At all events, when a third removal was 
made to Bhooj, the capital of Cutch, the grand- 
mother returned home. From Alibag, Gopal had 
been transferred to Kolhapur, and it was probably 
there that the grandmother parted with the child, 
who was soon to be married to Gopal. 

Yamuna was now older than most Hindu girls 
are when they marry, but she had never thought 
of marriage. Pursuing her studies with an eager- 
ness that few women in any country could under- 


stand, all that she cared for was to remain with 
her teacher and continue her work. When there- 
fore the marriage was proposed, no objection was 
made to it. Gopal was a widower, and he would 
have been scarcely human if he had not been 
touched by the devotion of his young pupil. He 
was an educated man, respected by his own people, 
and twenty years older than Yamuna. It is not 
likely that any charge had ever been brought 
against his character ; for Gunputrao, who entered 
cheerfully into the arrangements for the wedding, 
was not a man to overlook that. Yamuna was 
married on the 31st of March, 1874, the day on 
which she completed her ninth year. 

A Hindu woman can make no claim upon her 
father's estate. When she mames, the father 
agrees to give to her husband a certain sum, if 
he is rich and able, and he endows his daughter 
with such clothing, jewels, and utensils as he 
chooses. Yamuna was her father's favorite, and 
he had a trembling sense of the remarkable life 
she was to lead, based upon the dream which they 
had interpreted together. He gave her abun- 
dantly of his great wealth, — superb cashmeres, 
Dacca muslins bordered with gold, delicate jewels, 
bangles and anklets of solid gold, and ornaments 
that were heirlooms and would ordinarily have 


gone to a son. Still another thing showed liis 
high trust in her : she was allowed to cany away 
from her home some of the most valued and sacred 
of the household gods, and the relics connected 
with them. 

In an o£fi.cial statement made lately at Poonah, 
Gopal gives me the dates for this portion of my 
story but he does not give the exact date of his 
removal to Bhooj, the capital of the province of 
Cutch. I am constrained to tliink it occurred in 
the spring of 187-4, from the circumstances. Ya- 
muna must have gone home to be married ; and 
although her grandmother might well hesitate to 
go with her several hundred miles to the north- 
west, to an unknown and undesirable location 
like that of Catch, there was no apparent reason 
why she should not remain at Kolhapur. As 
Cutch was within the Bombay Presidency, Gopal 
■was undoubtedly obliged to report at Bombav, in 
remo\dng from Kolhapur to Cutch, and either 
Poonah or Kalyan could be taken in the direct 
route to his new home. 

Four days after her marriage, in conformity to 
the custom of the !Mahrattas, and the more com- 
pletely to affiliate her to her husband's family, 
Yamuna dropped the name by which her father's 
loving lips had called her, and assumed that of 


Anandabai, or " Joy of my Heart," by wbicb sbe 
was afterward known. Up to this time she had 
suffered no peculiar hardships. Her husband was 
poor, but his salary was equal to their modest 
wants. The proposal of marriage, according to 
the custom of the country, came from the wife's 
family; and the father of Anandabai could not have 
been ignorant of the character of the province to 
which his child was now going. He believed that 
this young daughter was to follow in the footsteps 
of her great ancestor so far as to shed a fresh 
lustre on the name of her family. The sacredness 
attached to her vision spurred him to aid her in 
every way that he could. At this moment he 
could hardly be expected to see how her removal 
to a distant and demoralized province could de- 
velop her destiny. 

The "island" of Cutch must be nearly four 
hundred miles to the northwest of Kalyan or 
Bombay. Surrounded on three sides by water, 
and bounded on the other by an immense salt- 
marsh produced by the earthquake of 1819, 
Cutch is an island only during the rainy sea- 
son. This marsh, or "runn," one hundred and 
fifty miles long by sixty wide, furnishes a hiding- 
place for criminals and bandits. The country 
produces cotton, gum, and nuts, which are sent 


in native vessels to Africa, three thousand miles 
away, where they are exchanged for ivory and 
hides, and to Guzerat, where the mariners ex- 
change cotton for grain. Twenty years before 
Gopal and Anandabai went to Bhooj, the town is 
described as consisting of low, mean dwellings, 
so crowned by white mosques and temples, shaded 
by date-trees, as to present a picturesque appear- 
ance at a distance. It is a fortified town, stand- 
ing half-way up a hill. The people are of Eajpoot 
descent, but more than half the population pro- 
fess a sort of spurious Mahometanism, adhering 
to many Hindu observances. This is especially 
true of the Jharejah tribe, to which the reigning 
prince belongs. Neither its morals nor its man- 
ners bear out the boast of virtuous simplicity 
Gopal was so fond of making. It had a popula- 
tion of twelve thousand adults at the time of 
which I speak, and the universal practice of fe- 
male infanticide had reduced the number of native 
women to thirty ! The people were then ignorant, 
indolent, and drunken, and obliged, of course, to 
procure their wives from other tribes. The Ee- 
ports to the House of Commons show a terrible 
local demoralization. 

Anandabai did not like her neighbors ; and I 
think it must have been here, in her tenth year, 


that she began to do her own cooking, cleaning 
her brass vessels, and tossing up her pastry in 
hands like those of a Greek model. Hard work 
she had never known. It began here with the 
necessity of repression, some regard to the pro- 
prieties of womanhood, and a desire to escape 
from the influences around her. She never com- 
plained either then or afterward of anything in 
her lot ; but she said, " I was never at home 
there." It was a religious ceremony, making mar- 
riage irrevocable, which she had entered into in 
the spring of 1874. 

When the second ceremony, consummating the 
marriage, took place, I do not know; but Anan- 
dabai's only child was born in her fourteenth year, 
probably at Kolhapur, some time early in 1878, 
as Gopal wrote from that town in 1878 and 1879. 
It lived about ten days, and died, as Anandabai 
thought, because it did not have a competent 
physician. It was this that first led her to think 
of studying medicine. " A child's death does no 
harm to its father," she once said, " but its mother 
does not want it to die." 

In all the thoughts and schemes that grew out 
of her bereavement her husband seems to have 
shared; and those who heard him speak in this 
country will hardly understand the letter ad- 


dressed to one of the Presbyterian missionaries 
from Kolhapur on the 4th of September, 1878. 
It is probable that he had come into contact with 
the missionaries in every town in which he had 
lived. He kept a steady eye to the advantages 
to be gained by Anandabai's thorough education, 
and perhaps he was not perfectly frank when he 
wished to gain their co-operation. When his 
wife's proud heart took fire at certain indignities, 
it was he who urged her to go back to the school 
in Bombay. At all events, his learning and in- 
telligence won a certain hearing for this letter. 
It was forwarded to the " Missionary Eeview " 
published at Princeton, and printed in January, 
1879. Gopal expresses a warm interest in female 
education, and says that he should be glad to live 
in America if his wife could study there. The 
letter was supported by one of the local mission- 
aries in terms which showed that he based this 
support on what he thought a rational expectation 
of Gopal's conversion. 

Dr. Wilder, the editor of the "Eeview," seems 
to have published these letters chiefly for the pur- 
pose of printing his own reply, written Oct. 14, 
1878. In this letter he thoroughly discourages 
Gopal's project. He evidently does not wish 
any unconverted Hindu to come to America ; he 



believes that his intelligent correspondent will be 
led to " confess Christ," and trusts to the mission 
schools to educate Mrs. Joshee sufficiently. Little 
did he think that this very letter would be the 
means of bringing her to this country. At various 
times it has aroused the indignation of Ananda- 
bai's friends; but from a somewhat wide experi- 
ence of male Hindus, I cannot consider their visits 
to the West profitable to others or themselves. 
With the single exception of the author of " The 
Oriental Christ," I have seen no Hindu who 
seemed to me prepared intellectually and morally 
for the freedom he would find in American soci- 
ety; nor are Americans prepared for the air of 
innocence and exaltation worn by very undeserv- 
ing Orientals. I have no doubt that Dr. Wilder 
honestly shrank from the possibilities ; and I 
differ from him only in this : I do not think any 
"conversion" works a miracle in a man's intel- 
lectual status; and I do not think Gopal, if he 
had " confessed Christ," would have been one bit 
better able to understand his environment in 
America than he proved himself while walking 
in the shadows of the old Vedas. It is not learn- 
ing, intellect, subtlety, or imagination that is want- 
ing in the average Hindu ; it is purity, faith, and 


So felt I before I had seen this Hindu woman, 
and now I pity every one who was not privileged 
to see and know her. 

Let us see what became of Dr. Wilder's letter. 

Early in the spring of 1880 a lady almost as 
remarkable in philanthropy and spirituality as 
Anandabai herself, went from the little town of 
Eoselle, in N"ew Jersey, to see her dentist in Eliza- 
beth. Upon the dentist's table, among other 
interesting things, lay the old number of the 
"Missionary Eeview," and she took it up to 
wile away the moments of waiting. She knew 
nothing of Hindustan or its people. Gopal's letter 
seemed to her a genuine cry for help, and her whole 
soul was roused to indignation by the brutal man- 
ner in which she thought this cry was repulsed. 
In the tumult of her mind she copied the address, 
and then as she went slowly home she remem- 
bered that she knew nothing of British India, 
nothing of possible ways or means, and she put 
the whole subject out of her mind. The next 
morning it returned ; she could not get rid of the 
impression that it belonged to her to answer that 

Early in March, 1880, Mrs. Carpenter wrote 
to Gopal, using the Kolhapur address; but after 
the migratory fashion of the British office, the 



postmaster had meanwhile left that town for 
Bombay, and was now among the dreary hills of 
Bhooj. In this letter she offered the shelter of 
her own home to the young wife in whom she 
had already begun to feel a tender interest. It 
was some mouths before she received a reply, 
which led directly to the freest correspondence 
with Anandabai. The strength and sweetness of 
Mrs. Carpenter's letters seem to have won Anan- 
dabai's confidence at once. In a very little while 
she had adopted Mrs. Carpenter into her family, 
called her her aunt, and wrote of the children at 
Eoselle as her cousins. 

" Then began for me," writes Mrs. Carpenter, " a 
regular course of education in Hindu manners, cus- 
toms, religious rites, and everything of interest which 
her ready pen and remarkable mastery of English 
could set forth, while I in return answered all her 
queries. Newspapers, magazines, pictures, flowers, 
and seeds were exchanged. The exchange of pho- 
tographs was most interesting to me, because of the 
peculiar style of dress. How strange seemed the 
bare arms with many bracelets, the bare space un- 
der one arm, the bare feet with their anklets and 
toe -rings, and the mark on the forehead ! That I 
should be corresponding with a young woman dressed 
like this who could write elegant English seemed 


past belief. I was puzzled by a blemish on the upper 
lip ; and in response to my inquiries, Anandabai wrote : 
* It is the nose-ring that you see in my photograph, 
between my nose and my lip. It consists of one gold 
wire, upon which are fastened pearls, some pendent and 
others fixed and star-shaped. We are fond of many 
ornaments. Our hands, feet, necks, and waists are 
all adorned " to the teeth." Even our noses and ears 
are bored in many places to hold them. Holes are 
bored through the lower part of the left nostril for 
the nose-ring, and all around the edge of the ear for 
jewels. This may appear barbarous to the foreign 
eye ; to us it is a beauty ! Everything changes with 
the clime. The Mahratta dresses and ornaments are 
quite different from those in use in other parts of 
India.' We exchanged locks of hair, although Anan- 
dabai said it was not the custom of her people ; only 
widows were allowed to cut their hair." 

In writing of widows at another time, she said 
to Mrs. Carpenter: — 

"To tell you the truth, I shudder at the very 
sound of the word. Your American widows may 
have difficulties and inconveniences to struggle with, 
but weighed in the scale against ours, all of them put 
together are but as a particle against a mountain. 
When we began to write, I cared little for letters ; 
but I now see how the daily occurrences of life, which 
I thought so trifling, may yield instruction." 


Later she continued : — 

*'I wish to preserve my manners and customs, 
unless they are detrimental to my health. Can I 
live in your country as if I were in my own, and 
what will it cost mel When I think over the suf- 
ferings of women in India in all ages, I am impatient 
to see the "Western light dawn as the harbinger of 
emancipation. I am not able to say what I think, 
but no man or woman should depend upon another 
for maintenance and necessaries. Family discord and 
social degradation will never end till each depends 
upon herself." 

At this time, not being very well, Anandabai 
went to Kalyan. From this town she sent some 
silver filigree from Cutch to her friends ; and later 
she continues : — 

"We reached Calcutta on the 4th of April, 1881. 
The flowers I sent you from Cutch were wild flowers. 
I had made a garden in my compound there, but 
I had no liking for the care of it, and I owe you a 
great debt for urging me to undertake it." 

And she goes on to tell how flowers are used in 
the Hindu religious services, how each god is 
supposed to have his favorite flowers, trees, and 
plants, and speaks of their specific virtues. 
In May she wrote very despondently of her 


own health, and of coming to America, and goes 
on : — 

" We have met with so many misfortunes that I 
do not think my husband will continue long in the 
service. We have no friends here. Our diet, man- 
ners, and customs are different from those of the 
Bengalis ; nor can we ask sympathy from the English. 
We Hve in the house of a German milliner. When 
I came, all the servants gathered round to have a 
look at me, and the lady peeped through her window 
and laughed. If we read to each other, she begs us 
to stop because her children cannot go to sleep. She 
told some people that we quarrelled all night, and 
asserted that I was not a married woman. For a 
fortnight we could not get enough to eat, although 
our pockets were full. Our ' kit,' containing baggage, 
bedding, and clothing, remained behind, and we had 
to sleep on mats. The ground was damp. Such a 
thing had never happened to us before. You see how 
hard it is to travel where we have no friends. What 
would happen to us in your country ] 

" Our great Raja Harischandra was persecuted like 
the Job of your Bible. He was deprived of his all, 
of his wife and child, but he did not break his vow. 
When he stood the test, God restored all to him." 

Hope still cheered Anandabai, although her hus- 
band seems wholly to have lost courage. In June, 
1881, she writes : — 


" Calcutta is trying to the utmost. Physically we 
are reduced in health and strength. The climate is 
very warm. It has begun to rain, and yet the heat 
is not less. We go out for a walk, and the Europeans 
talk and laugh when they see us. The natives stand 
still, and order their carriages to stop, while they 
stare at us. They can never be persuaded that we 
are married. There is so much of the zenana system 
here that a woman can scarcely stand in the presence 
of her relatives, — much less before her husband. Her 
face is always veiled. She is not allowed to speak to 
any man, — much less to laugh with him. Even the 
Baboos, who have spent years in England, will not 
drive here, with their wives, in open carriages. If it 
is so with the educated people, how much more preju- 
diced must be the illiterate ! One Sepoy insulted us 
when we were walking on the Esplanade. He asked 
my husband who the woman was that he had with 
him. My husband was angry, and asked his name, to 
report him to the commissioner. This brought him 
to his senses, and he went away courteously." 

The first entire letter which I select from her 
correspondence is dated — 

Calcutta, Aug. 27th, 1881. 

My dear Aunt, — In my last I acknowledged your 
letter of July 3d. I beg to answer it now. I have no 
more of your letters to answer, and hope not to be in 


arrears in future. Your letter, that I am about to 
reply to, is so consoling and heart-soothing that it is 
most welcome. We are not yet free from troubles. 
During the last five months anxieties have arisen 
without and within. We were about to forget them, 
when another serious mishap occurred. 

A special despatch from the Viceroy to the Governor 
of Bengal was due here on Sunday, the 14th. It was 
watched by special officers from Simla. It was re- 
ceived by my husband on passing a receipt. It was 
to be immediately sent to the Governor*s camp. My 
husband was therefore going to the railway with one 
of his assistants, into whose hand the important letter 
was given. As they were running fast, to get into a 
hackneyed carriage that could be met on the road, the 
letter dropped down. A searching inquiry was made 
all along, but in vain. The letter disappeared in the 
twinkling of an eye. The consternation and stir it 
must have given rise to throughout the town will be 
better conceived than described. All the high officials 
held councils. The police were sent in all directions. 
The persons of the men on the road were examined. 
Not a stone was left unturned. My husband and his 
assistants were in custody ; depositions were made, — 
in short, it was a day which will never be forgotten. 
My husband was suspended, pending orders from 

You may imagine what state of mind I was in, 
and how engrossed must have been my heart by grief ! 


We gave up all hopes of service, and were preparing 
to start for any place. We first determined to go to 
Rangoon, in Birmah, and stay there for a time. It was 
my intention to make an address before the English- 
speaking people there, and thus obtain pecuniary as- 
sistance to leave for another place. From there we 
were thinking of going to Hong-Kong, and thence to 
Japan, and from Japan to America. This project may 
appear very wild to an outsider, but it was a necessity. 
We could not retrace our steps to Bombay, nor was it 
easy to travel in Bengal or the Punjaub, where the 
zenana is rampant. But, thanks to Providence, my 
husband has been reinstated ! My husband never lost 
anything before but in Calcutta ; he had never seen 
police court before but in Calcutta; we had never 
had scandals in our neighborhood but in Calcutta ; 
we had never seen double-tongued men before but in 
Calcutta. I do not know how much misery is still in 
store for us. I have been telling him to sever his 
connection with Government to avoid any future ca- 
lamities; but he is wavering. He thinks it very 
difficult to earn a livelihood ; but I think otherwise. 
Whether he is more experienced, and knows the world 
better, and therefore cannot do anything hastily, or 
whether the more a man is advanced in position, and 
the more he gets beyond what is actually necessary to 
sustain life, the more susceptible of imaginary diffi- 
culties he becomes, I do not know ; but in my opin- 
ion man must fear nothing but God. As God is over 


US and supplies our wants, I do not know why we 
should have a thought for the morrow. Man wants 
but little, and for that little he bears a world of care, 
which I do not understand. Let me be here, or in 
any part of the globe, I will get my bread. 

But to return to your letter. Had there been no 
difficulties and no thorns in the way, the man would 
have been in his primitive state and no progress made 
in civilisation and mental culture. Your letter is a 
sermon which we needed. Each line is full of mean- 
ing and world wide knowledge. I do not know how 
many times I should thank you. 

We have our food cooked by ourselves. "We do not 
get these things ready in the Bazaar. As we had no 
pots in which to cook, we could not do otherwise 
than go without, tiU. we had our own furniture 
brought home. We never employ low caste people 
to attend to household affairs, and as we were but 
two, in a place where servants and other things 
available were of no use to us we could but remain 
fasting. Imagine, you go to a place where there are 
no shops and yoii have plenty of money in your 
pocket. There is nobody to give you food, what will 
you do with your money? I have told you before, 
that as the people of India are not a travelling class, 
there are no hotels for us at each halting place. 
When we go on a travel we generally take with us 
articles of food, prepared in milk and sugar, without 
a drop of water. 


Any thing prepared in water is not carried and 
eaten. If eaten it must be prepared then and there 
and eaten on the spot. So money is not always a 
useful article in India. I know a gentleman who 
was travelling in *' Kandesh." He was not admitted 
to house or temple so he had to pass the night under 
a tree, l^ext morning he went from door to door, 
but could get no one to cook for him, though he was 
willing to pay for it enormously. At night he got 
hold of an old lady, who agreed to serve him, provided 
he would tell nobody. 

I have dreams about my departed friends, but 
never feel their presence when I am awakened. I 
often dream of going to America and holding long 
conversations. What does it portend 1 

1 enclose a letter for Eighmee. I hope she will 
write to me again. Her hand is after your fashion, 
affectionately yours, 

Anandabai Joshee. 

Several things are remarkable in this letter. 
Those who saw Anandabai and her husband to- 
gether in this country cannot fail to recognize in 
her description of the trouble at the Post Office 
the restless excitable nature of the and the 
sweet serenity of the woman. Those projects of 
hurried travel were all his, but she does not disown 
them. We smile tenderly over the expressive 
epithet of "hackneyed" as applied to a public 


carriage, but Anandabai could not know that it was 
the abuse of the public coach which had caused 
this word to stand for all common-place and tire- 
some things. Its history is a curious example 
of the growth of language. Originally applied, as 
Eichardson shows, to an active noisy horse or ney, 
which vented its activity in frequent neighs, and 
as such horses were most frequently found at- 
tached to public carriages, the word hack-ney was 
soon transferred to the carriage itself, and when 
the dusty vehicle began to have a fixed character 
in the public mind, the substantive soon came 
to do duty as an adjective for all manner of 

In this letter Anandabai expresses the great 
annoyance she felt, at the observation she attracted 
in Bengal. "The zenana is rampant" she says. 
Once when I was trying to protect her from un- 
pleasant observation in the City of Philadelphia, 
she thanked me by saying, " I am more at home 
here than I was in Calcutta." She is only six- 
teen, yet she wonders at the world of care people 
are willing to carry to acquire goods that are by no 
means necessary ! Do we not find a touch of the 
" Oriental Christ " in the words " As God is over 
us, and supplies our wants, I do not know why 
we should have a thought for the morrow ? " She 


could not speak English at this time, although 
she wrote it so easily. The letter closes with an 
allusion to the impulse which had prompted Mrs. 
Carpenter to write to her. Her father Gunpiitrao 
Joshee, had now been dead for some time, and 
she fancied from something that Mrs. Carpenter 
had written, that her new friend had been under 
his influence. If he had lived the family oppo- 
sition which made her life and duty so very hard 
would have been averted. 

She now began to study Sanscrit in earnest that 
she might be able to show English scholars " the 
sublimity of the Shasters." 

In a letter written about this time, she says, 
" Any thing which cannot be enjoyed by the whole 
world is bad for me ! " Was there ever a more 
pronounced socialism ? Her life in Calcutta had 
brought her new and varied trials, which she felt 
more sharply than any in the morasses of *' Cutch." 
We know from this letter that she was very 
poorly fed. Her landlady did nothing to help her 
out of her trouble. When she went into the 
street or to the Bazaar she was followed and 
pelted. "This country is not a good one for us 
for we are living in a manner not warranted by 
its customs," she wrote. Feeling the dejection 
consequent on starvation she says, "I think I 


shall not live long. To live and be useful is of 
the grace of God, but to die is the direct proof of 
his grace ; still to die before the call of nature is 
the desertion of duty." Wonderful thoughts these 
to be stirring in that young brain. To one who 
knows anything of the sanitary condition of the 
smaller towns of India, it is impossible to contem- 
plate with patience the several changes in her 
career. Daintily fresh always was everything 
about her that she could control, but at Barrack- 
pore, from which she writes in December, she 
attain alludes to fever and headache. She had not 
been well for more than a year. From Nov. 1880, 
to March, 1881, she had been constantly ailing. 
In Sept. and October, 1881, she was so unwell as 
to be carried to a friend's house to be nursed. It 
was after hearing of this illness, that a friend of 
Mrs. Carpenter's, a lady who had no special interest 
in Anandabai, received a prescription in her sleep 
which was sent to her. I give it exactly as it 
was transmitted. 

1 ounce of black Cohosh, 
I an ounce of Juniper berries, 
1 ounce of Virginia snakeroot, 
^ ounce of Buchu leaves. 
Put this in four quarts of water and boil it down to one 
quart. Add one pint of tbe best Holland gin, and take 


half a wine glass after breakfast and just before going to bed. 
Begin with a little smaller dose, and repeat the prescription 

This would not be worth relating if it were 
not for the consequences. Anandabai took the 
medicine in December of 1881, and it is not till 
October, 1883, that we find again in her letters 
the pitiful words, "I am not very well," words 
which had been written in every letter previously 
received and which we came to understand later 
as having very serious meaning. 

This is what she herself says about it, writing 

Barrackpore, Bengal, Dec. 26th, 1881. 

My dear Friend, Your favor of Oct. 10th. came 
too late for a reply in last month. I am much better 
now, at least, free from fever. I am however thinking 
of taking the medicine, which you so kindly sent as 
prescribed for me by your good Doctor. I am now 
more independent and able to have things to my sat- 
isfaction. To tell you the truth, I always labor under 
inward impressions. I solve many difficult things 
while sleeping. I was not able to cut different kinds 
of native dresses for men and women, but I have 
learnt how in dreams. While sleeping, I dreamed 
that I had cut such and such shapes and sewed 
them. Next morning I when awakened actually did 
the same and according to memory and found every- 


thing fit and complete. Whenever I have to learn 
anything by heart, I do it when asleep. In the day, I 
read the passage to be committed to memory but once, 
and in sleep I read it over and over and repeat it 
next morning, without a mistake. Whenever I find 
any difficult passage in poetry I pass it over in the 
day, but in sleep I paraphrase it correctly and the 
next morning I am all right in translating it. I do 
not know who teaches me, but I learn in this way. 
I am therefore strongly inclined to believe that this 
medicine, prescribed in sleep will help me.-^ 

As I am not familiar with the English or American 
houses, I do not know how to satisfy your curiosity 
about the city house. We were living in a house, 
like those in which Europeans live in India. 

I shall however try to give you a description of a 
native dwelling in Bengal, in my next letter, as I once 
described to you our dwelling in Bombay. 

The death of your good President has been mourned 
all over India. Every native paper had a leading ar- 
ticle as if the loss was our own. This is an example 

^ " I have myself not infrequently got out of bed at night 
to write a thought or sentiment that had occurred to me in 
a semi dozing condition. A dream has some times served 
to solve an intricate mathematical problem, one that could 
not be solved in the waking state by the most powerful 
efforts of the mind." Autobiography of Dr. S. D. Gross, 
Vol. I. p. 178. 



of how good men live and die. They live for the pub- 
lic good and die in service. Thanks for the pamphlets 
of Shaker. They are Christian in principle. 

As you are not born and brought up in Hindu re- 
ligion you will not, I am afraid, appreciate its true 
merits. No religion is bad, but its followers and self- 
ish interpreters. Our priests are prejudiced and cor- 
rupt as are those of other religions. I dislike them 
as a class. I would rather be ignorant and illiterate 
than to have partial knowledge of every thing. As you 
value sickness as a means for the enjoyment of hap- 
piness, so I regard irreligious people as pioneers. If 
there had been no priesthood this world would have 
advanced ten thousand times better than it has now. 
So you need not expect to learn anything from our 
priests, who are no doubt groping in darkness. Spir- 
itual truths which lighten all burdens, and call for no 
sacrifices, are our teachers. Our forefathers used to 
commune with the All pervading Force, and derived 
knowledge therefrom. They disregarded external du- 
ties and put too much stress on the acquirement of 
self knowledge for the emancipation of the soul. 

I am sorry I forgot all about the wedding of the 
Bengali Babu though I promised to give you some ac- 
count of it. The services of the occasion were for- 
malities like the Christian. The parties were united 
by mutual promises made before a magistrate. The 
marriage was registered before the ceremonies were 


formally performed by a Bengali minister. This is 
copying English fashion. I do not understand why 
this is given precedence to the old customs which 
were more established. 

I am glad to inform you, that if I have at all 
received any schooling, it was for a year only, when 
we were in Bombay. The lady superintendent was 
Miss Robson, who was very much interested in my 
education. She belongs to the Mission established 
by the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel. 
I love these Mission ladies for their enthusiasm and 
energy, but I dislike blindness to the feelings of 
others. This lady compelled me to read the Bible 
on pain of expulsion from the school. I told her I 
would not, and came home. I informed my husband, 
and said I did not want to go to that school again. 
But he expostulated with my rashness. He said that 
we would not lose anything by reading the Bible, 
and brought me round, to going to School, where 
I then abided by the rules. As a whole, I have 
nothing to say against the Bible, which is a code of 
moral rules, except the assertion, " He that believeth 
shall be saved," and "he who believeth not shall be 
damned." I have all along found the Missionaries 
very headstrong, and contemptuous of the faiths of 
others. How arbitrary would it be if I were to say 
that all you believed was nonsense, and all I believed 
was just and proper ! My dear friend, I have nothing 


to despise. The whole universe is a lesson to me. I 
am required by duty to respect every creed and sect, 
and value its religion. I therefore read the Bible 
with as much interest as I read my own religious 
books. I sincerely thank you for your undivided 
sympathies with me and my husband in the sudden 
fall into the depth of anxiety and distress brought 
about by that sad event. 

If I had been called to share the storms with my 
husband, I would have done nothing but my duty 
which I owe him as his deserving wife. There would 
have been nothing commendable or heroic in it. Let 
there be any amount of difficulties or distresses, and 
I think I shall be more than equal to face them. My 
hearty love to Eighmee and Helena. 

Affectionately yours, 

Anandabai Joshee. 

In spite of a certain crudeness of expression 
there is a wonderful maturity of thought in this 
letter. I think no one can read without emotion 
the paragraph beginning, "I have nothing to 
despise, the whole universe is a lesson to me." 

The next letter is written from Serampore. 
Barrackpore and Serampore are two small towns 
about ten miles north of Calcutta on the two 
opposite banks of the Hooghly. Each is reported 


to contain from twelve to fifteen thousand inhabi- 
tants but they are very different in character. 

Barrackpore has been the country seat of the 
Governor Generals for more than forty years. It 
has fine residences, a beautiful park and a large 
military cantonment. Serampore is now a Hindu 
village. It is neatly built, in European fashion, 
stretching along the banks of the river for a mile. 
It was long the headquarters of the Protestant 
Missions and was ceded by Denmark to Great 
Britain in 1845. That Mr. Joshee should have 
been successively removed from an important 
position in Calcutta to the offices in these small 
towns would seem to indicate some dissatisfaction 
on the part of the government, occasioned perhaps 
by the lost letter, but there were no more changes. 
At Serampore, Anandabai remained until she 
started for America. From her copious letters to 
Mrs. Carpenter I select the following. 

Serampore, April 18th, 1882. 

As intimated in my last, we left Barrackpore on 
the first, and arrived here the same evening. The 
river is only a mile wide, and we crossed in boats. 
Serampore is an old town of historical note. The 
first Missionary College in India was established here. 
It is still flourishing. There are many rich land- 
holders, whose houses are princely. But the inhabi- 


tants are as barbarous and superstitious as they were 
hundreds of years ago. If the men are friendly they 
will not allow their women to associate with their 
own sex, if they are foreigners like me. I can form 
no acquaintance with them, unless I were to become 
a Missionary and force my way into the Zenana. 
You must not suppose they would not like to see the 
world, and yet some of the Bengali women who have 
been educated follow very barbarous customs. It is 
customary among us to eat " Vida " compounded of 
thirteen ingredients, namely betel leaves, betel nut, 
chunam, almond, camphor, saffron, cloves, cardamon, 
and so on. This "Vida" stains the teeth, tongue 
and mouth a red color. Some of these Bengalis stain 
the outside of their lips and so expose themselves 
to contempt. 

I rely on God, and do not seek to know who are 
his individual messengers to me. Take any religion 
you like and you will find that its founder was a 
holy man. Go to his followers and you will find 
holy men the exception. I am glad to inform you 
that Miss Robson's school has been closed owing to 
her obstinacy. Soon after I left, she required all her 
scholars to read the Bible, and the result was that 
her pupils, ninety in number, left her, and she went 
home never to return. 

In January, 1882, Anandabai sent out her gift 
of the Tila seed comfits, the making of which 


she describes in the following letter. She asked 
that they might be distributed among her friends 
according to the Hindu custom at the New Year, 
with the words 

" Accept these Tila seeds, and be friendly with me 
throughout the year." 

The Tila seeds are of three kinds, the white, 
red and black. I think it was the black which 
Anandabai used for her comfits. An oil is ex- 
tracted from all of them, and is now exported to 
France, where it serves to adulterate olive oil. 

Serampore, Bengal, May 16th, 1882. 
My dear friend, — Your favors of March and 
April are with me for reply. At the head of each 
letter are beautiful pictures which are really worth 
looking at. I am glad to hear that the Tila seeds have 
at last reached you. I have requested you to eat them 
up, as they are intended for that. The way they 
are prepared is not difficult to learn, but I do not 
know enough to describe it. Take one pound of sugar 
and as much water and boil it till it becomes a little 
thick, so that if dropped on the ground it will look 
like a pearl and will run if you blow it, yet will not 
be hardened or dried into a pill. This sugar juice 
should be kept in a pot. Then the seeds should be 
wet, their skins removed, and again dried : put a 


brass pan over a light fire, and shake the seeds in it 
till they are swollen. Then move them to and fro 
with your fingers, and put five drops of the sugar on 
them at a time, shaking them till all are coated. Then 
you will have Tilas like mine. I am very much inter- 
ested in the work you do from morning till evening. 
You will find the women of this country, both rich 
and poor, employing their time as usefully as you do. 
I am glad our household business perfectly resembles 
yours, but alas ! how few there are among the Euro- 
pean residents of India who follow in the footsteps 
of their forefathers. 

My time is not so usefully employed as yours, but 
I will give you an account of the life which the gen- 
erality of our women lead. We get up at five o'clock. 
We first answer the calls of nature, which is the pri- 
mary duty, without which no person is clean to do 
any business, much less to worship God and prepare 
food. We sweep the ground, and wash all the copper 
and brass pots used for drinking purposes and wor- 
ship. Then we oil and comb and dress our hair with 
several kinds of ornaments. Then, if there be chil- 
dren in the house, rice is prepared for them at about 
half past seven. Children eat it with salt and ghee. 
Ghee is boiled butter. Milk is sometimes used with 
rice. Children use pickles and " Papad " made of kid- 
ney beans, pounded with seasoning, such as cummin, 
pepper, chili, salt, and sometimes fennel. We begin 


to give rice to children when they are one year old. 
Hand-made breads of wheat flour are sometimes made 
for children's breakfast. After this is done we are 
engaged in putting all articles to rights before we sit 
down to cook them. As soon as vegetables are brought 
from the market, we wash them and then cut them 
into small pieces. So are rice, pulse and wheat flour 
cleaned and kept ready for cooking. We usually pre- 
pare five or six vegetables, and an equal number of 
other sour, hot, and sweet articles called "Koshim- 
biris." Plantains, guavas, and other fruits are cut 
,and filled with spices. 

Our stove is earthen, by the side of which we sit to 
cook after bathing and changing our night clothes and 
putting on sacred garments, which have been washed, 
and dried in a room where no one could go to touch 

First we put an iron pan or a brass pot on the 
stove and put a little oil in that. When it is hot, rye 
seeds and cummin are thrown into it. When they 
are properly fried and broken, we put the vegetables 
in and cook them without water. We take our meals 
twice a day. The first meal about noon, the second 
from seven to eight in the evening. As a rule men 
take their meals before the women who serve them. 
A married woman does not eat until she has served 
her husband. After dinner, the men go to bed, and 
women are engaged in removing and washing the 


dishes, and cow-dunging the earthen floors, after 
which we change our clothes, and sit down, preparing 
for next day's cooking, cleaning rice and so on. We 
cut and sew our clothes till half-past five. We then 
go to the temple and return home after six o'clock, 
when we are again employed in preparing articles for 
Slipper. This occupies us until nine, when we pre- 
pare our beds and sleep. This is what women in 
India generally do. They have no letters to write, 
or books to read. They do not receive or make calls, 
except among their own female relatives. They do 
not speak with men, even with their own husbands, 
in presence of somebody. 

I hope Helena has begun to attend school. It is 
getting very warm here, and much sickness prevails. 
My husband has been unwell. He has applied for 
one year's furlough. If he gets it, we shall start for 
America. It was our intention to secure a passage 
for Japan, and thence to America, but it is a circuitous 
route and expensive, so we intend going through Eng- 
land. Can you tell me how many days it will take, 
and what is the fare? I suppose Eoselle is not far 
from New York. 

I have much pleasure to inform you that I had 
some Bengali ladies invited to my house one evening 
and I was very much astonished to see them bow 
down before me, as if I were God ! They were pecu- 
liarly interested in my dress and ornaments. They 


said the Maharastras had a respectable dress of their 
own, while Bengalis are half naked. I began this let- 
ter on the 16th, but was abruptly invited to Calcutta 
by my kind lady for a party which she gave in honor 
of her son's thread ceremony. 

Your affectionate niece, 

Anandabai Joshee. 

This quaint account of the manufacture of the 
comfits sent by Anandabai, as a new Year's greet- 
ing, lets us into some of the secrets of Hindu 
cooking. From the time that she first began to 
write to Mrs. Carpenter, to that of her own arri- 
val in this country, the little Hindu girl sent by 
mail or ship all sorts of curious things to illus- 
trate the dress, food and customs of her country. 
Hers was no bric-a-brac collection. Scarce an 
article in it had any claim to prettiness, but the 
thoroughness with which she managed to exhibit 
Oriental life would have done credit to a Cen- 
tennial Commissioner. Samples of all sorts, mil- 
let, buckwheat, pease and beans, were brought in 
small phials. All herbs, roots, seeds, and gums 
used in medicine were put up in the same fashion. 
Then followed the cooking utensils made of brass 
or pottery, the furnaces or chafing-dishes of coarse 
earthenware, the family idols and their shrines. 


and last of all, the letters which carefully de- 
scribed each. 

This "Tila" is the Sesamum orientale, always 
connected in the Oriental mind with the occult 
forces, and carrying a hidden meaning as it is sent 
from one friend to another. The " Open Sesame " 
of the Arabian Nights is an invocation to the 
secret creative forces hidden in this tiny germ 
and permitted to work elsewhere. 

" Ghee," she tells us, is " boiled butter," but why 
should butter be boiled ? . Because, otherwise, it 
could not be used at all, in many parts of India. 
Butter must there be made from milk, often by 
simply shaking it in a bottle, for it is impossible 
to let the milk stand until the cream rises. After 
the butter is made, it is scalded, clarified and so 
carried to market, otherwise it would be rancid in 
twenty-four hours. This is " Ghee," and in it all 
Hindu vegetables are cooked. 

Many vegetables are used in India, which seem 
to us as innutritions as the "fried grass" of which 
Daniel Webster once partook at a rural neighbor's. 
Buckwheat is roasted, and eaten in the grain and 
tender buckwheat leaves are stewed in "ghee" like 
beans or pulse. 

The practice of " cow-dimging " the floors of 
apartments does not seem very pleasant, it is 


therefore necessary to explain it. When Mr. Dall 
first went to Calcutta, he found the Hindus every- 
where sweeping their houses and compounds with 
brooms made of twigs. Of course, it could not be 
thoroughly done, and one of the first articles man- 
ufactured in the Useful Arts School was the 
European broom, the handles, the broom corn, 
and the finished articles being several times sent 
out from Boston. After the earthen floor of a 
native house is swept, it is sprinkled with water 
in which cow-dung has been dissolved. 

This water stands until it is clear, and is really 
a solution of ammonia. The effect of it upon the 
earthen floors is to purify and harden them. It 
must be remembered that the Hindus consider 
everything relating to the cow as sacred, and prim- 
itive experience probably pointed out the use- 
fulness of this application. 
- The allusion to the " bowing down " of the Ben- 
gali ladies may puzzle those who are unacquainted 
with Hindu life. 

The Mahrattas, among whom Anandabai had 
been bred, greet each other with dignity much 
like Europeans. The Bengalis prostrate them- 
selves, and this astonished Anandabai as much 
as it would one of us. 

The next letter from Serampore contains a touch- 


ing Hindu story, and an interesting account of 
the " imposition of the thread," which may be 
considered as the consecration of the adult Brah- 
min according to the Shasters. 

Those who read between the lines can easily 
see what the story of Savitri had become to 

Serampore, Bengal, June 17th, 1881. 

My dear Friend, I now pick up my pen to 
write as I promised. To-day is the day of maihng, 
and I suspect I shall not be able to post in time. 
I am sorry to inform you, that our starting for Amer- 
ica has been postponed for about six months, as a 
furlough cannot be had before. 

I will send the price of the three books you so 
kindly sent me two years ago, through the money 
order system which will begin on the first of July. 

I now turn to your question, " What is the thread 
ceremony '? " I will try to quench your thirst of curi- 
osity. There are sixteen such ceremonies among us, 
from birth to death. " Thread ceremony " is the eighth 
in order. It is initiating a Brahmin boy of eight years 
in spiritual knowledge. After this, the boy must live 
at his preceptor's house, and study Vedas and many 
other things till he is twenty years of age. And if 
during twelve years he is very well educated, he is 
then allowed to come to his father's house, but if not, 


he is uot allowed till he finishes his study. He must 
pass this time, which is devoted to knowledge, in celi- 
bacy and then his marriage takes place. He should 
pass twenty or twenty-five years in the company of his 
family, until he is forty or forty-five years of age. The 
remainder of his life should pass in solitude until 
death put a stop to it. In this ceremony Brahmins 
are fed, money is given to the poor, and a triple 
thread, prepared at home, is taken in hand and made 
holy by repeating Vedic verses. This is afterward 
worn by the boy round his neck and under his right 
hand as a garland. I will send you an Almanac from 
which you may see how it is worn. Then the boy 
becomes a holy Brahmin. Before this ceremony he is 
allowed to dine with his parents, that is to say, they 
can eat from one dish, but when he has passed it 
and becomes what is called a "Munjah," he must eat 
alone by himself. This ceremony is performed by 
three castes, the Brahmin, the Kshatriya. and the 
Vaishya. Among Brahmins in the eighth year, among 
Kshatriyas in the eleventh, and among Yaishyas 
in the twelfth. After the ceremony, the boy must 
perform certain religious austerities twice a day. 
This ceremony corresponds to baptism among Chris- 
tians. It was good in principle, but now-a-days it is a 
mere ceremonial. Parents now spend thousands of ru- 
pees to gratify their vanity and do no good to the 
boy, who is fed at home, instead of being allowed to 


stay with his preceptor and live by begging, which 
is the principal injunction of our Shastras. A Mun- 
jah has no right to eat at his father's. I am afraid I 
have not done justice to the subject, but will try to 
write more fully before long. 

We had a holiday on the first, which is called " Wala- 
savitri." Wala means a banyan tree, and Savitri was 
the obedient wife of a man named Satyavan. Sa- 
vitri was the only child of her father, who was called 
" Ashvapati." She was exceedingly beautiful and wise. 
She was growing more and more wise as the moon 
grows in the first fortnight.. When she was about 
eighteen years of age, her father sought for a bride- 
groom, but did not find any one fit to be her husband. 
Ashvapati was a king, so he searched for a princely 
bridegroom. He afterwards told his daughter to travel 
and choose for herself. She went with many attend- 
ants and saw many kingdoms on the earth, but did 
not find any good-natured prince. There was a de- 
throned king called " Dinmatsen " who had an obedient 
son named Satyavan. Dinmatsen and his wife were 
both blind. This family of three dwelt in a cottage 
in a forest. Savitri chose Satyavan for her husband, 
and immediately returned home to inform her father, 
who consented to it. 

In the mean time Narada descended from Heaven, 
and went to the King's Palace. Ashvapati was very 
glad to welcome him. While they were engaged in 


philosophic conversation Savitri came in and Narada 
asked where she had been. Ashvapati informed him 
and Narada then begged her not to marry Satyav^n. 
She replied that her determination would never alter. 
Narada and her father tried their best to influence her 
by telling her that he was dethroned and in reduced 
circumstances. She refused to heed them. At last 
Narada explained that Satyavan would die in a year, 
and if that would happen, what would she do ? 
Notwithstanding this Savitri stood firm. She said no- 
body should be defeated at heart, but bear with 
whatever comes, whether pleasant or painful. " If 
God has written widowhood on my forehead," she 
said, "no one is able to wipe it away. God's will 
shall be done, who will gainsay if? All persons on 
the Earth except Satyavan are to me like my father's 
brothers and sons. Then how could I marry them 1 " 

Narada was pleased with what she said, and as- 
cended to Heaven. Ashvapati made preparations, and 
started for the forest with his daughter and all her 
relations. He went to the cottage and explained 
Savitri's intentions. 

Dinmatsen explained that he was poor, blind and 
dethroned, but finally consented. 

So Savitri became the wife of Satyavan. The King 
gave them wealth — but they declined it, saying that 
as they might not enjoy their own riches, they would 
take nothing from others. The Princess took off her 


jewels and fine clothes and gave them to her father, 
and the King returned to his people. Savitri knew 
the day of her husband's death, which Narada had 
predicted. She was an obedient wife and when at 
last only three days were left to him, she could 
neither sleep nor eat. Sorrow preyed upon her. Her 
husband and his relations begged her not to fast for 
she was very delicate. When the last day came, Saty- 
avan was going as usual to the forest for fuel. Savitri 
begged him to take her with him. " You are tender 
and will not be able to walk. You must be very hun- 
gry. Eat something and then come if you must." But 
she urged him, till he sent her to ask the consent of his 
father and mother. At first they too refused her. 

They started for the forest. Her husband said that 
she had better be at home, for the way was long 
and difficult. " Should I not be with my dear hus- 
band so much as once 1 " she said. As he was cutting 
trees with his axe, he was tired, and a venomous snake 
bit him. He then slept under a great banyan tree, 
taking his wife's lap under his head instead of a 
pillow. " Yama," the God of Death, came to her, and 
asked her to lay her husband aside, that he might 
take away his soul. "Who are you, and why do 
you come hither T' said she. He answered her, 
and she begged him not to separate them, but he 
■would not heed. At last he seized the soul and went 
away, and she followed him weeping. He looked back 


and told her to go away and burn the corpse of her 
husband. " What should I do without my husband," 
she cried; " wherever my husband's soul is carried I 
will follow." '' You will be tired," he said ; " go back 
and burn the body." "I am your adopted daugh- 
ter, take me to my mother," she retorted. He desired 
her to ask anything of him except her husband's soul. 
She asked that her husband's parents might have their 
si-ht. Yama gave it and walked on. He again looked 
blck and told her to return. She said, " How is it that 
you like to see your daughter a widow V' "Ask for 
anything," he answered, "except this soul." She de- 
sired that Dinmatsen should be restored to his lost 
kingdom. Yama gave that too, but she did not cease 
from following. " Go and burn your dead," he cried. 

*^0h, this is a spot on your world-wide fame! 
Death is said to be friendly," she cried. 
"Ask me yet a third thing," he entreated. 
" I have no brother," she replied. " Oh, bless my 
father with a son." This also Yama granted, and told 
her not to follow, but she went on. "Ask me a 
fourth gift," he said, " and go back to the body." 
"Venerable father," she said, "I must not be called 
barren, give me some sons." "They are yours," he 
said, and went forth, but she followed. He looked back 
and gTew very angry. "Why do you not return f' he 
said. " How am I to return without the soul of my 
husband," she said patiently, "you have promised me 


that I shall not be called barren." Then he remem- 
bered that she was not pregnant and repented of his 
fary. "Go back," he said, "the soul is released." 
She hurried back to the banyan, in whose shad- 
ows she had laid the body before she followed Yama. 
Again she laid her husband's head upon her laj). In 
a moment or two he roused and saw the sun shining. 
She asked her husband why he slept so long, for he 
knew that his parents would be waiting. He re2:)lied 
that he had been dreaming. Then they hurried home, 
and found to his great surprise, that his parents had 
received their sight and that both father and mother 
were weeping. How glad they were to see their 
daughter-in-law for the first time with their own eyes ! 
The King who had dethroned them gave everything 
back, so their last days were full of happiness. 

Savitri's father had sons and reigned happily. We 
therefore observe this day, and worship the banyan as 
the emblem of eternal marriage. 

I shall not be restored to a paaceful mind until I 

hear that you are recovered from your illness. These 

two years, since our correspondence commenced, I 

have never had the misfortune of your letter being 

put off on account of illness, although I have failed 

more than once. I sincerely hope and pray to God 

that my Aunt may soon be able to comfort her 

niece in her distress. 

Your affectionate niece, 



The story of Savitri whicli Anandabai here tells 
in her own way is one of the most beautiful of 
the old Hindu epics. ISTarada or Narad', as the 
name is pronounced, was a deity who sprang from 
the hip of Brahma, and who with functions some- 
times resembling those of Orpheus, at other times 
those of Hermes, seems to have interfered con- 
stantly in human affairs. 

The last letter written from India that I shall 
offer to my readers is full of character. It shows 
a girl of seventeen absolutely fearless, because her 
trust is in God. It gives us some idea of the 
trials that had already beset her. It hints at the 
disapprobation of her mother, which was the bit- 
terest drop in her cup, but shows no suspicion of 
the thousand drawbacks which were to delav her 
start. In August, 1882, Mrs. Carpenter wrote her 
a long and careful letter, detailing the manner and 
expense of coming to America. For the first time 
the way seemed easy and practicable to Anandabai, 
and she pours forth her delight as follows. 

Serampore, August 12th, 1882. 
My dear Aunt, — I proceed to write an answer to 
your letter dated July 1st, as promised in my last, in 
which I have acknowledged it. I imparted my joy to 


you in a few words. As I was reading it, I was in 
ecstasy, when it fell from my hand. For a while I 
knew not what to do. I wished I had feathers, to 
flit at once. On that day I did not eat my food as 
usual, for my head and heart were full with joy and I 
thanked the Almighty for the approaching pleasure. 

You know at first our intention was that we should 
both start for America. I remember that you too, a 
year ago, expressed your wish that we both should go, 
but now it is altered. After serious deliberation we 
perceive that it will be very expensive. You can im- 
agine how difficult it is for a small purse to pay for 
two passengers from India to America. Beside, my 
husband has an old mother, and younger brothers to 
care for. I have neither a jealous nature to be hurt 
by this separation nor any one to care for except my 
husband. I have had here two dear things above all 
one of which I have lost (through her disapproba- 
tion), and that is my mother. The other is my hus- 
band. I have two sisters and one brother. Oh poor 
mortals ! They are under a kinsman's care quite 
ignorant of this world. So I am untyed. I am not 
sorry for this, but think myself happy. I am there- 
fore prepared to go alone to America, in company of 
any respectable family. My husband will be here. 
Considering the future prospects of my life as a physi- 
cian I must make up my mind to be separated from 
my husband. 


You have reason to think that very distant voyage 
will be hazardous for a girl of eighteen because the 
world is full of frauds and dangers, but dear Aunt, 
wherever I cast my glance, I see nothing but a 
straight and smooth way. I fear no miseries. I 
shrink not at the recollection of dangers, nor do I 
fear them. Wherever I will be, there will be Heaven 
for me. I am sure God has created many high souls, 
like you, who will not neglect me. 

Besides, we are never sure that we shall live un- 
separated for ever. We know not when we shall be 
condemned to separation. Is it not always possible 
that one of us will be lost 1 I give an instance for 
your satisfaction. One family consisting of four mem- 
bers came to Benares on a pilgrimage two months 
ago. Unfortunately three of them died of cholera and 
a helpless girl of eighteen was left behind. What 
could she do then 1 She has lost her husband, brother- 
in-law, mother-in-law. If this life is so transitory 
like a rose in bloom, why should one depend upon 
another 1 

Every one must not ride on another's shoulders but 
walk on his own feet. Perhaps my husband will fol- 
low me, some time after, but I must not wait for him, 
as time is so precious. 

Thousands are too violently attached to the con- 
trary opinions. Hundreds show their own scruples, 
by urging that I am liable to go astray, and lead an 


unchaste life when unprotected by any nearest relative. 
My design meets the approbation of a few, say one or 
two to a thousand, and they are probably, youths, 
reformers and patriots. You will easily believe that 
I, fearing the disapprobation of the many, will desist 
from my determinate proposal, but it is not so. Though 
I cannot teach courage, I must not learn cowardice, 
nor at last leave undone what I so long since de- 
termined to do. I am not discouraged. I only won- 
der at their scruples and their timidity. I am not 
sorry for their unfavorable opinions. Their opposition 
strengthens me the more. I promise myself that 
if my efforts will be successful, I will return to my 
native country ; otherwise I will not see India again. 
I must not fear but try my best and show all, what 
we Indian ladies are like. Our antient Indian ladies 
were very wise, brave, courageous and benevolent, 
and endurance was their badge. Let it be my badge 
also. I am sure nothing will harm me, or if it does, 
it will be for my good. I know that whenever any 
misfortune has befallen me, it has been profitable for 
me. As we are all children of one father, none will 
attempt to deceive or betray me, wheresoever I may 
be. No one has power to disturb and harm, except 
He gives it. "We have neither the power of devolving 
misfortunes upon ourselves, nor the power of avoiding 
them. These must come according to His will. I 
must launch my fortune like a ship on the ocean of 


life. To what shore shall it go, to a fertile bank 

or a barren beach'? or will it go to pieces'? Let 

me try to do my duty, whether I be victor or victim. 

So I have determined, and will start some time in 

December or January next. Please be so kind as to 

be there at the time. I am sure you will not seek to 

deter me from my purpose. 

I am impatient to see you and to begin to learn 

what my country needs. I feel that the movement 

of my mind is due to the counsels of my husband. 

What he has taught me, he has so impressed that it 

will never be effaced. 


Mrs. Joshee now began to prepare in earnest 
for her removal to America. This last letter 
shows that she had attentively considered all the 
obstacles in her path, and that while Hindu rela- 
tives opposed, her American friends affectionately 
warned her. In the early part of October she 
looked forward to travelling with friends of a 
Mr. and Mrs. Thorburn, probably Missionaries, 
as she states that Mrs. Thorburn had been a 
graduate of the Woman's Medical College in 
Philadelphia and would give her letters to friends 

On the 17th she writes as if there had been 


" I am ready, but the company is still to find." 
"Letters have been sent to all the four quarters." 
" Missionaries and English people advise me to go di- 
rectly to New York, to delay in England will be very 
expensive." " All this waste of time fatigues me." 

'Nov. 28th, 1882, she continues : — 

" Everything is going on through Dr. and Mrs. 
Thorburn. I do not know how to repay their kind- 
ness. I can only thank Him who gives them to me. 
She has already written to the College in Philadelphia, 
but I must wait to consult with you. 

" I shall go with two English ladies of her acquaint- 
ance who will start in February. I am sorry to say 
that the Mahratta family who were so kind to me in 
Calcutta are wholly changed since they know I am 
going. My husband wrote them, when we could no 
longer keep it secret. They have only one child, a 
boy of eight, so they had adopted me as a daughter. 
They did a great deal for me. I still think them kind 
and good. Their opposition is due to tender hearts, 
fearful minds, and foolish superstition. They are do- 
ing all they can to prevent my going to America, but 
I cannot blame them. I have been like a child to 
them, dutiful, and I wish to continue so. 

" God has given me two precious things, my hus- 
band and my aunt. You will see how I have hardened 
my heart, when I tell you that I will be happy with 


you, though I am separated from him. I have given 
all my cares and anxieties to Him who is the only 
Soul. He who separates us will bring us together 

Jan'y 16th, 1883, she writes : — 

" You must be expecting to hear that I have found 
my escort and know when I shall start, but nothing 
is settled. I have been to Mrs. Thorburn on the first 
and twelfth of this month. The last time I was ad- 
vised to join a medical class which is shortly to be 
opened in Calcutta under the supervision of Dr. Thor- 
burn. This was unexpected, and I could not reconcile 
myself to it. I told them I could not change my 
plans. Mrs. Thorburn said she would do her best 
for me, but knew of no escort. I found her wholly 
changed, and wrote to my husband. 

*' * I saw Mrs. Thorburn at the appointed hour. She 
has disappointed me. Never mind, the opposition of 
friends brings God to my side. I am not discouraged.* 
Before he received this, he had called on Dr. Thorburn, 
and shared my disappointment. Instead of losing 
courage he went off to plan some other way, so I am 
glad to tell you. that I will start early in February. 
My husband will go as far as Madras or Aden, till he 
can leave me with a trusty friend. Dear Aunt, every- 
day I learn something new. What I thought to be 
true yesterday I find to be false to-day, and something 


else to-morrow. God's ways are not known to man. 
Do not think I have anything to say against Dr. and 
Mrs. Thorburn. They have been very kind and took 
a lively interest in my plans. They may have re- 
ceived bitter letters from my relatives, or they may 
not find me fit for encouragement. Be that as it may, 
I will see America, the dream of my life, and I will 
stand or fall as I deserve. 

" On the 12 th was a holiday, on which I had gone 
uninvited to Calcutta to distribute sesamum-seed and 
earthen pots. The Mahrattas treated me so unkindly 
that I could not stay. He showed such a temper that 
I bitterly repented going. I do not blame them, for 
they had treated me like their own daughter. They 
think it is my rashness or thoughtlessness, which 
prompts a thing so hap-hazardous ! I have so many 
difficulties and disappointments that I have not an- 
swered your last two letters." 

Jan. 23d, 1883, she writes, "I am glad to say, 
that I shall start on the steamer ' Quetta,' leaving 
Calcutta via England on February 17th." 

On the 30th she says again, "Nothing is 
changed." On the 13th of February she writes 
from Serampore : — 

" I am afraid you will not think me truthful. Last 
time I spoke of one thing, this time of another, and 
who knows 1 it may be something else next time ! It 


would be madness to expect you to believe me, when I 
cannot believe myself. Since I wrote Dr. Thorburn 
sent a letter saying, " At last, we have made a very 
good arrangement to send Mrs. Joshee with a party 
of ladies by the ' City of Calcutta,' " etc. My husband 
thanked him, but did not accept the offer. He soon 
called on Dr. Thorburn and told him of my plans. 
The Doctor said the Steamers of the Line my hus- 
band intended me to take were not good. Many rough 
people travelled on them and he thought I was too 
young to go that way. He added that the ' City of 
Calcutta' would carry a student of the Philadelphia 
College much interested in my plans. My husband 
thought that it would be too expensive to send me 
first class, but the Doctor assured him that if I went 
with a party of Missionaries, the difference would be 
very small. So my husband came home, and the 
next day sent the Doctor a letter; in which he said, 
" If this lady takes my wife as a companion to please 
herself we shall be very much obliged, but if it is 
only to please you, and there is any grudge, we would 
rather depend upon Him who has created us all.' 

"So we have postponed starting for America. I was 
confounded, but what would people say of me if I 
despised this offered help *? How will it end ? Some- 
times our measures bring about the very evils they 
are intended to prevent. I am ashamed to speak of 
starting. If God pleases, I will start by the * City of 


Calcutta' about the first of April. I am not sure 
of anything. I am not a performer of anything. I 
am only His instrument. The whole day and night 
I dream only of seeing you." 

Such extracts as these might be multiplied 
many times. It seemed as if Anandabai's difiB.- 
culties would never come to an end, but "with 
what sweetness and serenity she encountered 
them ! A rare union of qualities, for many who 
do not fail in sweetness can hardly be called 
serene. How touching is the humility with which 
she defends the Thorburns and the Mahratta 
family to whom she was so closely bound ! They 
are not to blame, they have received bitter letters 
from her family, they do not find her fit for en- 
couragement ! all she undertakes must seem to 
them " hap-hazardous ! " However it seemed, it 
came truly of the "counsels of God." 

And now she had come to the crisis of her life. 
Let us consider what manner of woman she really 
was and what experience she had had. 

Of all the adventurous tribes who travelled 
southwards she came of those who from their 
hardihood, endurance and enterprise had consti- 
tuted the first military order in the country. In 
this military order of Eajpoots a still more in- 


telligent and adventurous gens originated, and 
from this her ancestors were born. The record she 
believed her family to have kept for two thousand 
years was the record of exceptionally brave, stal- 
wart and loyal men. The mantle of one of these 
men, distinguished by royal gifts and the founder 
of her family, had fallen upon her, young and 
tender as she seemed. Her experience of life 
had been varied. Her childhood had been passed 
between Kalyan and Poonah. At Kalyan, she 
was the daughter of a large landholder every- 
where respected and beloved, who was himself 
highly intelligent and quite as distinct a mono- 
theist as if he had publicly enrolled himself 
among the "Lions." 

At Poonah she lived in a princely house in a 
city of refinement and resources. In neither place 
could she ever have encountered a bold glance or 
a disrespectful word. 

Out of this serene atmosphere her marriage 
snatched her. Bombay was too large a city to 
treat her as she deserved, when her mountain 
habits attracted attention. 

The Island of Cutch had introduced her to 
everything that was repellent. When she fixed 
her affections upon a family of her own people 
in Calcutta she found them wholly wanting in the 


sincere and simple piety whicli had characterized 
her father. 

At Serampore, where her husband was post- 
master, her position was prominent enough to 
draw the attention of the whole native popula- 
tion, Ko one was inclined to aid her. It was at 
Serampore that Henry Martyn lived, and the 
Baptist College seemed still to glow with the 
fire of his saintly life. The Christians, European 
and native, did not wish her to go abroad un- 
less she would submit to baptism before she 
went. The Brahmins reviled her for even en- 
tertaining the intention, and rejoiced over every 
fresh obstacle. As the rumors of repeated dis- 
appointment and repeated fresh endeavors rose 
or fell the excitement increased. The Joshees 
lived in the Post-Office building. At last, the 
disturbance seriously interfered with the public 
business. At all hours the building was thronged 
and surrounded by groups of Bengalis of all 
castes, whose noisy declamation and angry gestures 
seemed likely to reflect discredit upon the office 
itself In this condition of things, Gopal proposed 
to get permission to make a public statement of 
their intentions in the College Hall. He was very 
much surprised to find that Anandabai preferred to 
make the statement herself, but he yielded. 


The "courage of her convictions," which car- 
ried her to the platform on the 24th of February, 
1883, has not yet been properly estimated in this 
country. It is not likely that any woman, either 
native or European, had ever addressed a public 
audience in that place. For a Brahmin woman 
to appear in public at all was, as we have seen 
from Anandabai's Calcutta experience, a grave 
misdemeanor. For her to appear in order to 
justify her own departure from the ways of her 
fathers was doubtless a graver still, and if it had 
not been for the general excitement, it is doubt- 
ful whether the use of the hall would have been 

Be that as it might, when the hour came the 
hall was crowded. A large number of natives 
had assembled, and with them a few Europeans. 
Among the latter was a certain Col. Hans Mat- 
tison, American Consul General in India, who 
was stationed at Calcutta and had from the very 
first felt a deep interest in her. The Eev. Mr. 
Summers, of the Baptist College, presided at the 
meeting. Anandabai made no preparation and had 
no notes. If it had not been for the affection- 
ate care of Col. Mattison, we should have lost 
this remarkable address. Some months after her 
arrival in this country Anandabai received half 



a dozen printed copies of it from Bombay, without 
having the slightest idea from whom it came. 

Omitting her Sanscrit quotations from Manu, 
and dropping a few paragraphs consisting of repe- 
titions, I copy here the little pamphlet issued by 
the "Native Opinion Press," of Bombay. Cer- 
tainly if it was ever read in the palace at Poonah 
it must have touched her mother's heart. 

Ladies and Gentlemen, — I stand here to fail, as 
I am not likely to succeed. I am however exceed- 
ingly thankful to you for the trouble you have taken 
to attend this meeting. You may have gathered here 
anxiously to hear of some interesting subject, but I 
am afraid you will be disappointed to hear me talk- 
ing of an uninteresting one. But what should I do ] 
There is no remedy. Had it been in my power to 
give you a pleasing address, I would have done so. 
The only attempt I have ever made to speak in pub- 
lic is this. I have studied but a little while and 
the language which I intend to speak in, is not only 
foreign but thoroughly out of command, and entirely 
unused. I am therefore liable to make thousands 
of blunders even in grammar. Many of those who are 
present here, are mere school-boys who will rejoice 
to find that I am not equal to themselves : the young 
will laugh and the old will pity my ignorance. 

I wish I had better knowledge of the language to 


attract the attention of you all. Pardon me for the 
disappointment you will have to suffer. I do not 
wish to tire you by a long preface, and as I want 
your unfatigued attention to a long narration, I beg 
to discontinue it. 

I wish to thank the College authorities for allowing 
me to stand here, more especially the Eev. Mr. 
Summers for presiding. 

Our subject to-day is, *' My future visit to America, 
and public inquiries regarding it." 

I am asked hundreds of questions about my going 
to America. I take this opportunity to answer some 
of them. 

1. Why do I go to America? 

2. Are there no means to study in India 1 

3. Why do I go alone ? 

4. Shall I not be excommunicated on my return ? 

5. What shall I do if misfortune befall me 1 

6. Why should I do what is not done by any of my 

1. I go to America because I wish to study medi- 
cine. I now address the ladies present here, who 
will be the better judges of the importance of female 
medical assistance in India. I never consider this 
subject without being surprised that none of those 
societies so laudably established in India for the pro- 
motion of sciences and female education have ever 


thought of sending one of their female members into 
the most civilized parts of the world to procure thor- 
ough medical knowledge, in order to open here a 
College for the instruction of women in medicine. 
There is probably no country so barbarous as India 
that would not disclose all her wants and try to 
st^nd on her own feet. The want of female physi- 
cians in India is keenly felt in every quarter. Ladies 
both European and Native are naturally averse to 
expose themselves in cases of emergency to treatment 
by doctors of the other sex. There are some female 
doctors in India from Europe and America, who being 
foreigners and different in manners, customs and 
language, have not been of such use to our women 
as they might. As it is very natural that Hindu 
ladies who love their own country and people should 
not feel at home with the natives of other countries, 
we Indian women absolutely derive no benefit from 
these foreign ladies. 

They indeed have the appearance of supplying our 
need, but the appearance is delusive. In my hum- 
ble opinion there is a growing need for Hindu lady 
doctors in India, and I volunteer to qualify myself 
for one. 

2. Are there no means to study in India 1 
No. I do not mean to say there are no means, but 
the difficulties are many and great. There is one Col- 
lege at Madras, and midwifery classes are opened in 


all the Presidencies; but the education imparted is 
defective and not sufficient, as the instructors who 
teach the classes are conservative, and to some extent 
jealous. I do not find fault with them. That is the 
characteristic of the male sex. We must put up with 
this inconvenience until we have a class of educated 
ladies to relieve these men. 

I am neither a Christian nor a Erahmo. To con- 
tinue to live as a Hindu and go to school in any part 
of India is very difficult. A convert who wears an 
English dress is not so much stared at. Native Chris- 
tian ladies are free from the opposition or public scan- 
dal which Hindu ladies like myself have to meet 
within and without the zenana. If I go alone by train 
or in the street some people come near to stare and 
ask impertinent questions to annoy me. Example is 
better than precept. Some few years ago, when I was 
in Bombay, I used to go to school. When people saw 
me going with my books in my hands, they had the 
goodness to put their heads out of the window just to 
have a look at me. Some stopped their carriages for 
the purpose. Others walking in the streets stood 
laughing, and crying out so that I could hear: — 

" What is this % Who is this lady who is going to 
school with boots and stockings on % " 

" Does not this show that the Kali Uga has stamped 
its character on the minds of the people % " 

Ladies and gentlemen, you can easily imagine what 


effect questions like these would have on your minds if 
you had been in my place ! 

Once it happened that I was obliged to stay in 
school for some time, and go twice a day for my meals 
to the house of a relation. 

Passers-by, whenever they saw me going, gathered 
round me. Some of them made fun, and were con- 
vulsed with laughter. Others, sitting respectably in 
their verandahs, made ridiculous remarks, and did 
not feel ashamed to throw pebbles at me. The shop- 
keepers and venders spit at the sight of me, and 
made gestures too indecent to describe. I leave it 
to you to imagine what was my condition at such a 
time, and how I could gladly have burst through the 
crowd to make my home nearer ! 

Yet the boldness of my Bengali brethren cannot be 
exceeded, and is still more serious to contemplate 
than the instances I have given from Bombay. 
Surely it deserves pity ! If I go to take a walk on 
the strand. Englishmen are not so bold as to look 
at me. Even the soldiers are never troublesome ; but 
the Babus lay bare their levity by raaking fun of 
everything. *' Who are you 1" " What caste do you 
belong to?" *' Whence do you come?" "Where do 
you go?" are, in my opinion, questions that should 
not be asked by strangers. There are some educated 
native Christians here in Serampore who are suspi- 
cious; they are still wondering whether I am mar- 


ried or a widow j a woman of bad character or ex- 
communicated ! Dear audience, does it become my 
native and Christian brethren to be so uncharitable 1 
Certainly not. I place these unpleasant things before 
you, that those whom they concern most may rectify 
them, and those who have never thought of the diffi- 
culties may see that I am not going to America 
through any whim or caprice. 

3. Why do I go alone] It was at first the in- 
tention of my husband and myself to go together, but 
we were forced to abandon this thought. We have 
not sufficient funds ; but that is not the only reason. 
There are others still more important and convincing. 
My husband has his aged parent and younger broth- 
ers and sisters to support. You will see that his de- 
parture would throw those dependent upon him into 
the arena of life, penniless and alone. How cruel 
and inhuman it would be for him to take care of one 
soul and reduce so many to starvation ! Therefore 
I go alone. 

4. Shall I not be excommunicated when I return 
to India"? Do you think I should be filled with con- 
sternation at this threat? I do not fear it in the 
least. Why should I be cast out, when I have de- 
termined to live there exactly as I do here 1 I 
propose to myself to make no change in my customs 
and manners, food or dress. I will go as a Hindu, 
and come back here to live as a Hindu. I will not 


increase my wants, but be as plain and simple as my 
forefathers, and as I am now. If my countrymen 
wish to excommunicate me, why do they not do 
it now '? They are at liberty to do so. I have come 
to Bengal and to a place where there is not a single 
Maharastra. Nobody here knows whether I behave 
according to my customs and manners, or not. Let us 
therefore cease to consider what may never happen, 
and what, when it may happen, will defy human 

5. What will I do if misfortune befall me 1 Some 
persons fall into the error of exaggerated declamation, 
by producing in their talk examples of national ca- 
lamities and scenes of extensive misery which are 
found in books rather than in the world, and which, 
as they are horrid, are ordained to be rare. A man or 
a woman who wishes to act does not look at that dark 
side which others easily foresee. On necessary and 
inevitable evils which crush him or her to dust, all 
dispute is vain. When they happen they must be 
endured, but it is evident they are oftener dreaded 
than experienced. Whether perpetual happiness can 
be obtained in any way, this world will never give us 
an opportunity to decide. But this we may say, we 
do not always find visible happiness in proportion to 
visible means. It is not a thing which may be di- 
vided among a certain number of men. It depends 
upon feeling. If Death be only miserable, why should 


some rejoice at it, while others lament 1 On the 
other hand, Death and Misery come alike to good and 
bad, virtuous and vicious, rich and poor, travellers 
and housekeepers ; all are confounded in the misery 
of famine, and not greatly distinguished in the fury 
of faction. No man is able to prevent any catas- 
trophe. Misery and Death are always near, and 
should be expected. When the result of any hazard- 
ous work is good, we praise the enterprise which 
undertook it; when it is evil, we blame the impru- 
dence. The world is always ready to call enterprise 
imprudence when fortune changes. 

Some say that those who stay at home are happy, 
but where does their happiness lie 1 Happiness is not 
a ready-made thing to be enjoyed because one desires 
it. Some minds are so fond of variety that pleasure 
if permanent would be insupportable, and they solicit 
happiness by courting distress. To go to foreign 
countries is not bad, but in some respects better than 
to stay in one place. The study of people and places 
is not to be neglected. Ignorance when voluntary is 
criminal. In going to foreign countries, we may en- 
large our comprehension, perfect our knowledge, or 
recover lost arts. Every one must do what he thinks 
right. Every man has owed much to others. His 
effort ought to be to repay what he has received. 
Let us follow the advice of Goldsmith who says : 
" Learn to pursue virtue of a man who is blind, who 


never takes a step without first examining the ground 
with his staff." I take my Almighty Father for my 
staff, who will examine the path before He leads me 
further. I can find no better staff than He. 

And last you ask me, why I should do what is not 
done by any of my sex 1 To this I can only say, that 
society has a right to our work as individuals. 

It is very difficult to decide the duties of individuals. 
It is enough that the good of one must be the good of 
all. If anything seems best for all mankind, each one 
of us must try to bring it about. According to Manu, 
-ne desertion of duty is an unpardonable sin. So I 
am surprised to hear that I should not do this, be- 
cause it has not been done by others. Our ancestors 
whose names have become immortal had no such 
notions in their heads. I ask my Christian friends, 
*' Do you think you would have been saved from your 
sins, if Jesus Christ, according to your notions, had 
not sacrificed his life for you all 1 " Did he shrink at 
the extreme penalty that he bore while doing good 1 
No, I am sure you will never admit that he shrank ! 
Neither did our ancient kings "Skibi" and " Maj/u- 
radhwaj." To desist from duty because we fear failure 
or suffering is not just. We must try, Never mind 
whether we are victors or victims. Manu has divided 
people into three classes. The meanest are those who 
never attempt anything for fear of failure. Those who 
begin, and are disheartened by the first obstacles, come 


next; but those who begin, and persevere through 
failure and obstacle, are those who win. 

The greater the difficulty, the greater our courage. 
Never let us desist from what we once begin. 

I have done. I am afraid I have exhausted your 
patience for which I beg to be excused. 

Thus she pleaded. Let us imagine a young 
American girl in her situation ! Is there any- 
thing in the spirit of the discourse that we should 
wish to change ? The expression could not have 
been the same, for expression is born of experi- 
ence, of our own experience, and that of gener- 
ations that have gone before ; but in all that is 
"pure womanly," all that shows loyalty to convic- 
tion and courage to endure, no American mother 
need ask more from her child than Anandabai 
Joshee was able to give. 

She writes again from Serampore, Feb. 27th, 
1883: — 

"I gave a lecture on the 24th instant at the 
Serampore College, concerning my journey, and the 
public inquiries regarding it. There was a large 
gathering of natives, and a few Europeans." 

On March 6th she adds : — 

" After hearing of my lecture Mr. H. E. M. James, 
the Director General of the Post Offices of India, wrote 


to my husband : * I was very glad to hear that Mrs. 
Joshee has made her d^but, and has succeeded. Pray 
give her my congratulations. I wish her every suc- 
cess. In recognition of her courage and public spirit, 
permit me to offer the enclosed check for one hundred 
Eupees, which may be useful to her.' " 

The money sent by Mr. James was more neces- 
sary than many of Anandabai's friends would sus- 
pect. She never asked for aid, and it is only 
since her death that we have learned with sor- 
row that the massive bracelets and bangles given 
to her by her father when she married were 
quietly sold to provide her passage money to 

"I was sorry," wrote Mrs. Summers, "not to have 
been present at your lecture on Saturday afternoon. 
I had to conduct a Woman's Bible Class just at that 
time, but my husband told me that it was a great 
success, so accept my congratulations." 

" 1 have received a good many letters from 
other friends," she writes. "Mrs. Thorburn has 
written me a letter of congratulation. One month 
is still to pass." The sailing of the steamship 
was, however, deferred from the 30th of March to 
the 7th of April. The poor child's courage was 
almost spent. On the 3d she continues : — 


" Overjoyed • with the approach of the happy time 
to which I have looked forward so long, I sit down 
to write what may be my last letter. Everything is 
settled. I feel better since I know that there is 
nothing to do but embark. I have come to Calcutta 
with my husband. We are with a Mahratta friend, 
who is young and kind. I have just come from the 
Consul-General of the United States, who has given 
me two letters of introduction. I shall go on board 
on the evening of the 6th, and we shall start the 
next morning. The time draws near in which we 
shall be in one country and one place. Every mo- 
ment shortens the time." 

On the 8th of April, 1883, Gopal wrote to Mr. 
Carpenter : — 

" My wife sailed yesterday morning, by the * City 
of Calcutta,' in the company of many ladies who were 
strangers to her. She was to have sailed on Monday, 
the 9th j but early in the morning of Friday I re- 
ceived word that she must be ready to start on Satur- 
day. We had invitations for the next three days, but 
could only decline them and hasten to get ready. She 
was not introduced to the ladies with whom she was 
to travel until she reached the ship, and even then 
her reception was cold indeed. Although at the elev- 
enth hour, I advised my wife to expect nothing from 
them, but to trust to Him who has made us both. 


My dear sir, I took good care of her until her depart- 
ure, and now I hand over this precious charge to you 
and your worthy wife." 

In the letters that I have quoted, three dis- 
tinct things are evident. First, Anandabai's own 
originality and nobleness of mind and conduct; 
second, a sort of Fatalism, common to Oriental 
people ; and third, the use of certain phrases, or 
proverbs, evidently taken from the more cynical 
lips of her husband. This last trait will not be 
so evident to my readers as to myself, for I 
dropped the phrases out of my text wherever the 
repetition threatened to be tiresome. 

Of Anandabai's journey to America we know 
very little. She sailed on the 7th of April, 1883, 
and arrived in New York on the 4th of June. On 
account of the engagements of the party with 
which she travelled she remained a week in Lon- 
don, and eight days at Queenstown on account of 
some matter connected with the steamer. The 
circumstances of her journey must have been 
evident to those who had charge of her; and to 
us who know her it seems incredible that she 
could have passed some sixty days in the society 
of any number of people without awakening in 
some one a profound interest. In speaking of 
her journey she said, briefly, that she was always 


Tinder restraint, as those she travelled with conld 
never be convinced that she would remain a 
Hindu in her faith, and felt it their duty to press 
the claims of the Christian religion. She did not 
feel at home in London, where she was asked to 
add the attractions of her finest saree and best 
jewels to those of any social gathering in which 
the missionaries naturally desired to rouse deeper 
interest. At New York she was met bv her near- 
est friends, Mr. and Mrs. Carpenter, of Eoselle, !N"ew 
Jersey. She had already adopted them into her 
heart, and never from the first seems to have had 
a doubt or reserve in regard to them. She re- 
mained at Eoselle from June 4th to Oct. 1st, 1883, 
and in these four months stole into the hearts of 
those who met her. Before leaving India she had 
expressed a fear that she might become tedious, or 
seem vulgar, from her ignorance of our manners. 
Instead of that, she was everywhere a " well-spring 
of delight ! " On her first arrival her perfect dig- 
nity was never sacrificed to the indulgence in 
curious questions, or rude stares, which were so 
freely bestowed upon herself, yet she seemed to 
miss nothing. 

After a little she pursued her Sanscrit studies, 
regardless of the presence of visitors. She was 
often called off to sing her lovely little Hindu 


songs, or to recite verses in some of the strange 
tongues she knew. She was always gracefully 
courteous, but the words of approbation or admi- 
ration with which her efforts were greeted never 
seemed to touch her. Quick to note every fact 
presented to her, grateful for every bit of infor- 
mation, — flattering words never seemed to be 
understood. "I do not care for words," she some- 
times said ; " I know how my friends feel without 
them." Mrs. Carpenter was at first surprised that 
Anandabai never addressed her by name ; but she 
soon found that, from the Hindu point of view, 
such an address would have been disrespectful. 
A visit to Tiffany's gave Anandabai great pleas- 
ure; and she showed such knowledge and appre- 
ciation of everything Oriental, that the finest 
goods were exhibited as if to a favored customer, 
and she was urged to prolong and repeat her 

Anandabai always said that this summer was 
the happiest of her life. I think she spoke the 
simple truth ; but she would have been very much 
surprised if any one had pointed out the true 
sources of that happiness. Yet she was far too 
truthful not to have recognized them, had the 
attempt been made. She was with those who 
really loved her, and who asked no greater privi- 


lege than to aid her in her plans. "No more re- 
straints foreign to her experience, like the customs 
of Bengal ; no more bitter letters from envious or 
dissatisfied kinsfolk, — nay, still farther, none of the 
thousand observances and deferences required of 
the married woman by the customs of her country. 
Every morning she religiously applied the scarlet 
paste in a little round patch to her forehead, 
which proclaimed that she was a wife. Every 
day she added some loving or witty words to the 
letter sent by every mail to her husband in Ser- 
ampore, but there all ended ; for the rest she was 
as free as a child, and like a child she glided 
about the house humming her Hindu songs. She 
was never weary of talking about her dear native 
land, and this summer she gave a great treat to 
her Eoselle friends by improvising for their benefit 
a Hindu feast. Mrs. Carpenter was at this time 
living in a large house. All the furniture was 
removed from the dining-room, and the smooth in- 
laid floor was ornamented and divided by delicate 
stripes of red and white about four inches wide. 
Including Anandabai, there were eighteen guests, 
and eighteen squares were drawn in red and white, 
one for each guest, surrounding a central square. 
The powders had been brought from India. The 
red was first applied in a broad band, and then 



the white was sifted over it from a brass cylinder, 
perforated with small holes in a pretty pattern. 
The effect was like that produced on ladies* 
dresses by a band of white lace applied over crim- 
son silk. Within the four corners of the central 
square were drawn intricate geometrical figures 
in the two colors, and scroll-like lines on the 
outer corners of the individual squares formed a 
pretty recess for the fresh green leaves of the 
buttonwood. These had been sewed together to 
do service as plates, instead of the long banana 
leaf which would have been used in India. Trav- 
ellers in India have not unfrequently seen a sim- 
ilar delicate tracery in colored sand on the open 
road as they have approached sacred buildings, 
but it has seldom fallen to their lot to participate 
in a native feast. Smooth pieces of board were 
placed near the walls within each square to take 
the place of chairs. Small plates were set near 
the leaves in the corner to hold rice and curry. 
Sweetmeats were also served in small dishes. The 
guests half reclined upon the boards. 

The ladies were all dressed by Anandabai in 
bright-bordered Indian sarees, which she took 
from her own wardrobe. The food, consisting only 
of fruit and vegetables, had been first prepared 
and then served by her own delicate hands. A 


Sanscrit prayer was reverently offered, and then 
eighteen dishes of the peculiar Hindu cookery 
were followed by coffee. As soon as each guest 
was supplied and the surplus carried away from 
the dining-room, Anandabai entered the square 
reserved for her, and prepared to teach her guests 
how to eat like a Hindu. 

None of them had dared to begin till she took 
her seat, for neither knife, fork, nor spoon was on 
the board. Anandabai would pick up a morsel, 
bring it a few inches from her plate, and then 
with a dexterous twist of her fingers toss it into 
her mouth. It seemed to fly magically to the 
right spot. " To miss," she said, " would be vulgar." 
After dinner, the guests repaired to the parlor, 
where a large mat had been spread, and huge 
white cushions had been provided for the ladies 
to lean upon. Against these the rich colors of 
the Indian sarees made a pretty show. Every 
married lady had the scarlet mark on her fore- 
head, and such bangles, necklaces, and other orna- 
ments as Anandabai had been able to procure. 
To the ladies, half reclining on the mat, and to 
the gentlemen standing or squatting Hindu fash- 
ion on the floor, Anandabai distributed bouquets 
of flowers, and on the back of each right hand 
she left with her dainty finger a trace of attar of 


roses, which she took from a phial of green and 

The company were then sprinkled with, rose- 
water from a silver vessel, and Anandabai sat 
down, evidently considering that her work was 
done. Not so her guests; they had heard that 
Oriental dinners were wont to conclude with song, 
and at their earnest entreaty one tender ditty or 
one birdlike caprice followed another, until all 
were tired. It was a little singular that on this 
occasion all the guests seemed to approve of the 
unwonted cookery. 

ISTot once did Anandabai show any signs of home- 
sickness. Little did she know what she promised 
when she told her people that in America she 
"would eat and drink, live or die as a Hindu." 
Did she begin to see how hard it would be ? 
When the letters from India came, her dear 
little face would light up like a child's, and for 
days after she would go humming her sweet tunes 
about the house, until loneliness began to make 
itself felt, and then she was silent till the next 
mail day. Anandabai could talk to the old, amuse 
the middle-aged, and play gently with the children, 
as no one else could. The children thought they 
were going to teach her to play jack-stones. The 
skill of her very beautiful hands was always some- 


thing wonderful to Western eyes. In botanical 
analysis, or delicate surgery, they served her well. 
With the jack-stones she had been at home from 
childhood, and turning her palm inside out she 
would catch the whole six or eight in the hollow. 
Very few persons thought Anandabai beautiful at 
first sight. Almost every one found her complexion 
darker than had been expected, and her form less 
graceful ; but to every one, sometime during the 
years that followed, there came a sudden revela- 
tion, a day when the soul seemed to flash through 
the flesh, to burn in the dark eyes, to inform 
the very finger-tips, and sway every fold of the 
wonderful dress. 

That summer she had the offer of a scholarship 
in the Homoeopathic College in New York, but 
on the whole she and her friends thought it best 
that she should begin with a four years' course 
in the Woman's Medical College of Pennsylvania, 
and it was gratefully declined. At this CoUege 
Anandabai was matriculated Oct. 3d, 1883. She 
had reached Philadelphia on Friday, September 
28th. On Saturday, Dr. Bodley held a reception 
for her. The good Dean's heart had been won at 
first sight. There was naturally a great deal of 
curiosity concerning Anandabai as soon as she 
appeared in the streets of Philadelphia. There 


had been Turkish and Syrian and Chinese pupils 
at the College, but Anandabai was the first pupil 
who had come from a foreign land wearing its 
native dress and preserving her native habits. 
It is greatly to the credit of our people, that 
she was never once seriously annoyed by their 
curiosity. In her own country she had worn a 
"divided" saree. The shawl passing between 
the legs produced the effect of Turkish trousers. 
As this would not have been suitable to our cli- 
mate, she consulted her Pundits, and an ancient 
form of the Mahratta dress was found, that could 
be worn over warm underclothing. 

As soon as she left Calcutta, Anandabai assumed 
a " union suit " of flannel, over that a union suit 
of cotton, then a skirt of flannel, one or two white 
skirts, and a dress made with a plain round waist, 
coat sleeves, and full skirt. 

This latter article was for protection ; the waist 
of it took the place of the queer little jacket which 
covered the chest, and sustained her breasts, in her 
native country. Her saree, which draped her en- 
tire figure, concealed the skirt. 

The saree is best described as a long shawl; 
its material varies according to work and weather, 
and ranges in value from the finest camel's hair, 
or Dacca muslin wrought with solid gold thread. 


to thin bordered cottons that scarcely cost a rupee. 
This shawl is never Isss than forty inches wide 
and four yards long, and according to its thickness, 
varies from four to eight yards in length. One end 
of Anandabai's saree was brought round the full 
skirt I have described, and tied by both corners at 
the waist line on the right side, in a small hard 
knot. The other was then passed under the left 
arm, to the back and over the right shoulder, across 
the bosom obliquely. The upper border was then 
snugly tucked in at the left side under the border 
which had been first tied round the w^aist. This 
allowed a good part of the length of the long 
shawl to fall diagonally over the right arm, and 
down before her person, displaying the broad bands 
of the border. The yards of material yet to be dis- 
posed of were gathered by the dexterous use of her 
hand into regular plaits, and tucked into the girdle 
under the falling drapery in front. This caused 
the handsome broad fringed end of the saree to 
bang in graceful folds just above the instep. 

When finally arranged, no part of the under 
dress was visible, except that which covered the 
left arm and shoulder and a portion of the left 
side of the bust. The right arm, which sustained 
most of the drapery, came slightly into view, and 
in ordinary weather the shawl, where it crossed the 


right shoulder, was lifted so as to cover the head, 
and was the only protection worn in the street. 
Anandabai's sarees were made of cotton, cotton 
and silk, cotton and gold, silk, silk and gold, and 
camel's hair decorated with silk and with silk and 
gold, and, in her most superb dress, with gold only. 
In this country, of course, she relinquished the 
padded and divided sandal of her native hills, and 
wore warm woollen or cotton stockings with but- 
toned boots. This dress was not complete till ear- 
rings, a nose-ring, and several necklaces, many 
bangles, anklets, and finger-rings were added. The 
longer Anandabai lived in America the less she 
liked to wear her ornaments, or rather those orna- 
ments which, like the ear-rings and the nose-ring, 
recalled a savage condition of society. When she 
wore them they did not offend me. The spray of 
pearl flowers, with hearts of rubies and emeralds, 
which lay across her upper lip was called a " nose- 
ring," but it was not a "ring" at all. It was made 
of whole pearls lightly strung upon wire, and was 
hooked into the left nostril so near the cheek that 
the insertion was not visible, and the ornament 
seemed to harmonize with her modest, childlike 
bearing. It was rather like a spray of blossoms 
playfully caught and held between her lips. Her 
most valuable anklets and bangles, the gift of her 


father at the time of her marriage, had been sold 
in India, as we know, to furnish the money for 
her voyage to America, but she preserved some 
heirlooms, which were very curious, and greatly 
resembled old Aztec work. The description I 
have given of her draperies applies to her ordinary 
wear, and will be readily understood by reference 
to her photographs ; but the arrangement varied 
somewhat according to the weather and the weight 
and length of the material employed. I questioned 
her carefully once as to the healthfulness of the 
native dress. She thought the saree very incon- 
venient for a working woman : it must be thrown 
back when the wearer was busy, and then the per- 
son was not protected ; but she never experienced 
the slightest inconvenience from wearing it as a 
student until her lungs began to fail. Then she 
found it very hard to carry the drapery upon her 
right arm, and acknowledged that the left side 
needed more covering. 

About the time that Anandabai arrived in this 
country an article was published in Frank Leslie's 
Illustrated Newspaper drawing public attention to 
her. It was written by her friend Hans Mattison, 
the American Consul General at Calcutta. 

*'We give on this page," he says, ''a portrait of 
Mrs. Anandabai Joshee, a Brahmin of high social 


standing, who has recently produced a sensation in 
India by breaking away from Hindu thought and cus- 
tom and announcing her determination to secure for 
herself all the advantages which are enjoyed by women 
in Christian lands. When it is remembered that the 
Brahmins are forbidden to cross the ocean, to eat food 
which has not been prepared by Brahmins, or to drink 
water touched by European hands, and that the viola- 
tion of these orders involves severe penalties, Mrs. 
Joshee*s heroism becomes strikingly apparent. 

" In her parting address she said : * We do not en- 
deavor to modify the action of the elements, or to 
fix the destiny of kingdoms. It is our business to 
consider what human beings can do, each striving 
to secure his own happiness by assuring the happi- 
ness of others within his own circle, however narrow 
that may be.'" 

Dr. Bodley had done well to summon the best 
women of Philadelphia to meet her new pupil at 
the outset. In this way a solid foundation of per- 
sonal interest was secured. Her friend, Mrs. Car- 
penter, came with Anandabai, and remained a day 
or two to settle her in her own home. At first 
the little room, with its warm stove, and cooking 
utensils brought from India, seemed to promise a 
certain cosey comfort for the winter, and to sustain 
Anandabai's resolution to live in all things like a 


Hindu. But the stove smoked, — it was one thing 
to kindle the responsive charcoal on the little pot- 
tery brazier in Hindustan, and another to deal 
with the tiresome anthracite in America : the fire 
went out. If the brass vessels had to be cleaned 
and the various kinds of ''dal" cooked, there 
could not be time for necessary study. 

Dr. Bodley saw how it was ; and long before 
her one line of complaint, " I feel very lonesome," 
had time to settle into serious homesickness, she 
was removed to the Dean's house, where she was 
granted all the privileges of a dear daughter. 
" How kind the Americans are ! " she wrote ; and 
as Christmas approached, and she prepared to 
spend it at Eoselle, she added, " perhaps you 
would not know, dear Aunt, how delightful it is 
to get ready to go home ! " 

A female physician who had been very kind 
to Anandabai died about this time at Elizabeth 
in New Jersey. 

" Is she taken away from those who love her dearly 
and need her so badly?" our little Hindu wrote. 
*' What a mystery this world is ! Happy to-day, mis- 
erable to-morrow ! How true that our deepest sorrows 
flow from our deepest affections. What an instru- 
ment of torture one's own heart is ! " 


She often spoke of " seeing " this friend as 
simply, and with as little thought of possible con- 
tradiction, as if the Doctor had walked in from 
the street in the flesh to call upon her. 

She returned to the College, Jan. 2nd, 1884, in 
deep distress of mind, occasioned by a letter re- 
ceived from a most bitter enemy in India. She 
could not listen to her lectures, and writes as fol- 
lows a day or two after : — 

"My face was clouded by my indignation. My 
friends said my color changed from red to blue, and 
thought I was sick. All at once a beautiful young 
lady with a sweet voice came and sat down by me, 
and pressing my hand with her own, said, — 

" * Dear child, do not despond. Providence is just 
and merciful, and means you no harm. Have courage 
to endure many more such things. Do you not re- 
member how I was persecuted in the presence of my 
husband the king ] Be true and faithful.' Then she 
seemed to disappear. I felt her presence though I 
could no longer see her, and was comforted." 

In February, 1884, Mrs. Joshee was so ill of 
diphtheria, that for a short time her life was de- 
spaired of. The best medical attendance, a trained 
nurse, and the loving care of Dean Bodley and 
Dr. Schultze saved her. It was during this spring 


that Anandabai gave an address before a Ladies' 
Missionary Society upon the subject of "Early 
Marriages." I think it tried the patience of those 
who were interested in her very severely. I 
have never seen any abstract of her remarks, but 
if she favored early marriages was it strange ? 
She had been married at nine years. All the hap- 
piness of her life had flowed from the instruction 
of her husband, and from that liberal sympathy 
which she supposed to move him in assisting her 
to come to this country. When she arrived, she 
found our papers full of conjugal quarrels, and 
applications for divorce. Not in one year nor 
twenty could she be expected to solve the prob- 
lems whose very existence filled her with disgust. 
At this time she was taken frequently to schools, 
asylums, and public institutions, and wherever she 
could learn anything, she was delighted to go. A 
visit to Barnum's Circus gave her no pleasure 

At this time she had a narrow escape from death 
at the Morristown Insane Asylum, where she had 
gone to witness a post-mortem dissection. She 
lingered in the operating-room for some reason, 
when an insane woman who had escaped unob- 
served from her attendants to watch the operation, 
seized one of the sharpest instruments, and ap- 


proacliing Mrs. Joshee announced her intention of 
operating upon her. The woman stood between 
Anandabai and the door, and only those who knew 
the latter well, can guess at the cool smile and 
wise speech which disarmed and held the maniac, 
until an attendant appeared. I remember hearing 
with some interest, soon after she began her studies, 
that she was the only one of her class who re- 
mained through a lecture accompanied by a post- 
mortem dissection of an infant. When I spoke to 
her about it, she only said, — 

" It would have been better if it had not been 
a baby." 

During the summer vacation of 1884, Anan- 
dabai went with some relatives of Mrs. Carpenter 
to Saratoga. Every step of the journey was full 
of meaning to the silent little traveller. Her 
rippling laugh frequently told of her pleasure on 
the way. Arrived, it pleased her very much to 
see the ladies going about without bonnets ; the 
younger going to the springs morning and evening 
without even a veil over the beautiful hair. Here, 
too, she made her first acquaintance with North 
American Indians. In one young squaw she took 
a great interest, talking with her about manners 
and customs, and receiving from her several 
friendly gifts. 


" Ever since I left Roselle," she now writes to Mrs. 
Carpenter, " I have not spent a day without my new 
companion the headache. Every movement gives me 
pain ; but you need not worry about it, for I do not 
let it interfere with anybody's happiness, nor even with 
my own. I enjoy the blissful quietude of all country 
places. One day at Troy we had some cucumber 
pickles ; the pickles looked unnaturally green. I sus- 
pected copper in them. No one could tell me about 
them, so I took a needle and ran it into one of the 
cucumbers. In a few minutes I was satisfied, for the 
needle had turned bright red." 

In October she resumed her college work, and 
writes as follows : — 

Philadelphia, Pa., Oct. 9th, 1884. 

My dear Aunt, — Excuse me for not writing earlier. 
The College opened on Thursday, October 2d ; the 
opening address was by Professor Parish; it was a 
charming lecture, useful and interesting to every in- 
dividual, the subject being Practical Hygiene. It was 
timely, and benefitted me as well as the general pub- 
lic. He had a large audience. The day after, my 
work began ; I have to attend all the lectures except 
those on Materia Medica and Surgery, which I take 
up next year. I work from fifteen to sixteen hours 
daily. The day after College began, Mrs. Smith and 
-I went to the Electrical Exhibition in the evening, 


and enjoyed it very much. I enjoy my studies more 
than ever. Professor White came only three daya 
ago, so we had our first lecture on Physio yesterday. 
I am grieved to tell you I am to lose an excellent 
friend and teacher. The sickness of Dr. Emily Du Bois, 
Demonstrator of Anatomy, was sudden to us all ; but 
she knew it before. Faithful, prompt, and thorough, 
she neglected her own self. 

I have not taken the money on the checque just 
received from the James fund. As I had enough 
trouble in trying to have another cashed, on account 
of the wrong spelling of my name, I did not try to 
borrow any more trouble that day. I have so little 
time to spare. I have not a cent with me, but owe 
a little to Mrs. Smith, and cannot get to clinics for 
the same reason. I have had a very severe cold for a 
week, and am aching all over. 

This remark about the James fund is the only 
allusion to be found in her correspondence to a 
matter which must have afforded her sincere 

It will be remembered that Mr. James, the 
Director General of the Post Offices in India, had 
sent one hundred rupees to Anandabai, after her 
address at Serampore, and expressed his pleas- 
ure at her success ; he did not lose sight of her, 
and some time after her arrival in this country 


Mr. Joshee sent his wife the following circular, 
which had heen published in the Calcutta papers, 
and was written by Mr. James ; — 

" A young Brahmin lady has recently gone to Amer- 
ica to study medicine, and qualify herself as a medical 
attendant for native ladies. 

"In doing this, she and her husband have made 
great pecuniary sacrifices, and her income barely suf- 
fices for necessaries. 

*' Going alone among strangers, though treated 
kindly, she has had to encounter many obstacles which 
she has bravely faced. In recognition of her courage 
and public spirit, it is desired to raise a sum which 
will pay her tuition fees, and relieve her from pecu- 
niary anxiety during her absence. 

" Mr. James, No. 2 Camoe Street, Calcutta, will be 
happy to receive subscriptions. 



His Excellency the Viceroy and Governor-General . 200 

His Honor the Lieut.-Governor 100 

The Honorable Chief-Justice Garth 50 

The Hon. J. Gibbs, C. S. I., C. I. E 100 

The Hon. C. I. Albert, CLE 50 

The Hon. Mr. Justice Pigot 50 

Mr. James , 200 




It was this money, with whatever was sub- 
sequently added to it, that Mrs. Joshee refers to 
as the "James fund." 

She often complains now of taking cold. 

Mr. Sattay, a friend of Gopal's, came from India 
in November, bringing with him bright sarees 
and embroidered jackets for Anandabai. It was 
delightful to her to hear the familiar rippling 
cadences of the Mahratta tongue once more. 

In December, 1884, she came to Washington 
and made what we both intended should have 
been the first of many visits to me. The final 
decline of her health, and the circumstances of 
her last year in this country, interfered. This 
visit was the only one. 

I had seen her for the first time shortly after 
her arrival in Philadelphia, on the 6th of October, 
1883. In my diary for that day I find the follow- 
ing entry connected with various items of infor- 
mation already communicated in these pages : — 

**I had promised to pass the evening at Dr. 
Bodley's, that I might meet the young Mahratta 
woman, who has come here to study medicine. As I 
had a high opinion of the intelligence of her tribe, I 
was surprised to find that a * nose-ring ' formed part of 
her costume although she wisely refrains from wearing 
it. Certainly, I never heard it spoken of in connec- 


tion with Bengali women. She insists on wearing 
her native dress, and although she wore three neck- 
laces, three pairs of earrings, her nose-ring as a brooch, 
six pairs of bangles, and a saree of crimson and gold, 
at the reception held for her by Dr. Bodlej, she 
was so plainly dressed to-night that she would have 
attracted no attention in the street, provided she had 
worn a bonnet. She was however so ill that I ought 
not to judge her. She looks like a stout dumpy 
mulatto girl not especially interesting until her yel- 
low face lights up, and light up it did as soon as 
she gathered from a helping word of mine, that I was 
familiar with the customs of her people. I cannot 
describe the effect. It was magical. She speaks seven 
languages, of which English, Sanscrit and Mahratta 
are three. Her English is exquisite. There is hardly 
a flaw in pronunciation or construction. If I had not 
known, I should have thought her born in this country. 
She has not a single 'cockney' trick of speech. 

" She has none of the delicate features which dis- 
tinguish the Bengalis. 

"Her feeling of caste is still uppermost. She re- 
ceives her guests with impassive dignity like a true 
Oriental, and was one of only two or three in her class 
who chose to stay and see a painful operation for ne- 
crosis performed on a young child this week. It was 
not from indifference, for she spoke of it with painful 
emotion. She has shown curiosity but once, however 


much she may have felt it. Among those invited to 
meet her was a mulatto lady, who took a medical de- 
gree two or three years ago, and is highly esteemed 
in Philadelphia. Anandabai looked her all over and 
evidently did not make her out. There was nothing 
to show her that the mulatto was not a Hindu except 
the European dress. 

"I was much interested in my conversation with 
this woman, however disappointed I felt as to her 
personal attractions. She had a blue tattooed mark 
between her eyes, a little like an anchor. She told 
me that this was inserted soon after birth, that she 
might be recognized as a Hindu, not mistaken for a 
Mahometan. Sometimes she thought family marks 
were made in the same way. The scarlet spot of paste 
which she wore on her forehead must be put on fresh 
every morning, by every married woman, as a sign 
that she is married, and the marriage vows must be 
silently repeated when it is laid on. Certainly, there 
are married women in this country who might well 
follow the fashion ! 

" When we parted, she put out her hand. * I feel 
as if I had found a friend,' she said. * It is the first 
time anybody has known about me,* and then I saw 
beauty in the lambent eyes." 

As time went on, I grew familiar with what 
had at first disappointed me, and saw the fascina- 


tions of movement and manner that others felt 
so deeply. It was the Oriental charm, but I do 
not think that in her own country she would ever 
have been called handsome. Her motions were 
sinuous, not serpentine like those of the Bengalis. 
Her beautiful hands and feet, her elastic muscles 
belonged to her race rather than herseE In one 
respect from first to last, she was herself alone, in 
the sweetest truthfulness, the most entire candor, 
that ever belonged to a mortal, and I have good 
reason to think that this is not a common Hindu 

Mrs. Carpenter thought her very beautiful, but 
not at first. The thought came upon her suddenly, 
when Mrs. Joshee came down one morning dressed 
for church, and radiant with her own holy thoughts. 

In her conversation with me, Anandabai talked 
about the Theosophists and the Brahmos, and if 
she had not distinctly said in her address at Ser- 
ampore, that she was not a Brahmo, I should have 
supposed her to be one, so much sympathy did 
she show with their movement. I saw her once 
more and wrote to her and heard from her sev- 
eral times before, on the 26th of Dec. 1884, I 
went to the cars to bring her to my Georgetown 
house. Everything about her arrival was unfor- 
tunate. The cars were so late that the carriage 


I had engaged was gone, and the demand on their 
arrival so great, that having no escort it was im- 
possible for me to secure another. We were 
obliged to go out in a horse-car, and this was not 
desirable on account of the attention she could not 
fail to attract. Beside this, she had some heavy 
hand baggage which she would not let me carry 
up the hill. I remarked with surprise the calmness 
with which she endured the curious gaze of our 
companions, and the courage with which she bore 
her burden and encountered the necessary fatigues. 
She was a striking contrast to the English ladies 
who came over to Philadelphia with the British 
Association that same year. During her stay with 
me I took her to all the public buildings, to a 
service at the Unitarian church, to several private 
luncheS; to dine with Commodore Walker's family 
and two other friends, and to several receptions, 
Nowhere did any peculiar awkwardness draw any 
attention to her foreign education. • 

It pleased her to steal quietly about my house, 
taking up and touching the various articles that 
had been sent from India. 

On the 29th of December, I wrote in my 
Journal : — 

" A very unpleasant day, but we had fifty-two callers, 
and in the evening gave a light supper to thirty. 


Last evening Mrs. Joshee talked well, about the an- 
tiquity of her nation, and of her family record, which 
she asserts is two thousand years old. She promises 
to write me details about it, and to send me some of 
the peculiar paper upon which it is written, when she 
returns home. To-night, before quite a large company, 
she talked in an earnest and excited way about the 
religions of the world, showing a profound intelligence 
as well as scholarship. Then for a while in a very 
entertaining way about jewels and costumes. Her 
best talk was with the Eev. Theodore Wynkoop, after 
most of our friends had gone. 

" To-night she wore a close satin vest embroidered 
with gold, and a white camel's hair shawl or saree 
deeply bordered with gold ; also her collars and neck- 
laces of jewels, and for the first time, at my request, 
her 'nose-ring.' This is a spray of flowers two or 
three inches long, and made of fine old pearls. The 
pearls were some of those given by the king to her 
warlike ancestor in Poonah. The centres of the star- 
like flowers are of ruby and emerald. A fine wire 
attaches it to the left nostril close to the cheek. It 
is very effective, much prettier than ear-rings, and 
looks as if she were holding a spray of flowers between 
her lips." 

We went some days after to see Major Powell, 
and arranged for some specimens of North Ameri- 
can pottery which Anandabai wanted to carry to 


India and promised to replace by specimens from 
Poonah. After a visit to the White House, I 
spent one evening in taking notes of her conver- 
sation. Very much longer should I have written 
had I guessed for a moment that it would be my 
last opportunity. 

Previous to Anandabai's arrival in this country, 
a letter of her writing was sent to a psychome- 
trist in New York. The following " impression " 
derived from this letter, and dated January 20th, 
1881, nearly a year and a half before any Ameri- 
can had seen her, has been copied into a Calcutta 
paper, and sent to me since I began to write these 
pages. It seems to me so just an estimate of her 
character, that I value it exactly as I 'mlue the 
" impressions " of John Quincy Adams and Daniel 
Webster, written out by my friend Anna Parsons 
more than thirty years ago. 

"This is an intellectual well-balanced mind, cul- 
tivated with great care," the paper begins. "The 
writer is a lady of more than ordinary brain power, 
very independent, but neither egotistical nor intoler- 
ant. She is not afraid to investigate any subject how- 
ever unpopular. She is analytical and very frank in 
speaking her mind. She converses fluently and meets 
strangers with a cordial, graceful ease that wins confi- 
dence and esteem. She has talent as an instructor, a 


clear style of expression easy to be understood. She 
has great equanimity, enjoys the attention of refined 
people, and naturally drifts into the society of the best, 
but never shrinks from those less fortunate if she can 
do them good. She has a taste for missionary work, 
and an executiveness and systematic way of managing 
that are quite original. She has great delicacy of 
character, is womanly in every respect, has an ardent 
love of nature and clings to old friends and associa- 
tions and to family ties. Her radicalism springs from 
a holy desire to do her duty. She has a religious cast 
of mind, is very spiritual but seems to know nothing 
of spiritualism. Her penetrative mind is constantly 
reaching for more light. She perceives the character 
of others readily and is seldom deceived, has a fine 
memory and good descriptive powers. In travelling 
nothing escapes her. 

" I see her in the future as one who has no superior ; 
living for truth, justice, and honor. She will always 
defend the weak. She has great forbearance, is sel- 
dom off-ended, and when she is, it passes and leaves no 
cloud upon her brow. She has a large hope which will 
sustain her as long as she lives." 

Since I began to write this Life, I have met a 
gentleman who listened to Anandabai's talk at my 
house on the evening to which I have alluded. I 
asked him if he had preserved any record of that 


brilliant conversation. "No," he said thought- 
fully, " I cannot report anything that she said, but 
I remember wondering when I realized how soon 
the foreigner and the lion I went to see, was lost 
in the sweet and cultivated woman with whom it 
was a pleasure to talk." 

During that year Anandabai made a convert. 
She was invited to tea one evening by a young 
physician who seemed to think that she should 
please her guest by a sort of agnostic conversation, 
expressing utter scepticism as to the existence of 
a Supreme Being, which was on the contrary very 
painful. Anandabai sat quietly through the meal, 
but when it was over, she asked her hostess to 
withdraw with her. As soon as they reached a 
chamber, she placed the astonished girl in a chair, 
and kneeling down beside her, entreated God to 
take pity on her and send her light. 

The consequences of this interview were re- 
markable. Some time after, Anandabai writes of 
her: "She used to laugh at every one who believed 
in God. There is no more satirical speech. She 
invited me to tea. After supper I was surprised 
to see her sit piously with folded hands and in- 
vite me to do the same. What a change 1 " 

How little had it ever entered into the head of 
our dear friend, when she prepared for coming to 


America, that she would ever be called to a duty 
like this ! Yet she had, as the psychometrist said, 
the heart of a missionary in her. 

During this year she made several excursions 
into different parts of Pennsylvania and delivered 
an address to the students of the College at Bor- 
dentown, ITew Jersey. 

Mr. Joshee arrived from India during the sum- 
mer of 1885. The first notice of his coming was 
received through California newspapers which 
were sent to his wife's dearest friends. How 
strangely small this world appears when we reflect 
that \vherever we travel, we cannot escape those 
who are on the watch for our misdeeds ! In this 
paper, Mr. Joshee was reported as having made 
an address unfriendly to the higher education of 
women. "This unfitted them," he asserted, "for 
the domestic duties of wives and mothers." A 
voice from the crowd shouted, "I thought your 
own wife was studying medicine in Philadel- 
phia ? " " Oh, yes ! " said Mr. Joshee, and then he 
shrugged his shoulders and spread out his hands, 
as if he would say, "How could I help that?" 
When I received this paper I sent it at once 
to Philadelphia, with the inquiries it suggested. 
All our friends were troubled. "No one seemed 
to know whether Anandabai had received the 


news, but the moment we met in the autumn I 
knew that she had seen the paper. A change 
had passed over her as subtle as that the hoar- 
frost breathes over the summer grass. She met 
her husband at Eoselle and in that summer — 
the summer of 1885 — she went with him to 
Greenwood, and to hear Talmage and Ward 
Beecher in Brooklyn. Mr. Joshee went alone 
to Washington. Of course, he did not find me 
there, but he went to my house, and there en- 
countered the lady who had charge of it in my 
absence. More ignorant than the rest of us of 
various embarrassing complications, this lady, who 
had been greatly attracted to his wife, looked at 
him sharply and said, "Was it you, then, who 
made that speech in San Francisco ? " " Yes," re- 
plied Gopal. " And what did you do it for ? " she 
persisted. " Just for a little fun," was the answer. 
" I thought I would stir them up a little." 

Mr. Joshee could have had a very inadequate 
idea of the interest Anandabai had aroused in this 
country, and he could have understood very little 
the character of his wife, if he expected her to be 
pleased by fun of that sort. I have recorded his 
reply, because I never gratified him by any in- 
quiries concerning the matter, nor am I aware 
that any of his wife's friends ever did so. Anan- 


dabai spent her Christmas vacation at Eoselle, and 
as she was to graduate in March, she devoted 
much of this time to the preparation of her grad- 
uation "Thesis" on "Hindu Obstetrics." 

After the fifty pages were finished and sub- 
mitted, she wrote as follows to Mrs. Carpenter: 

Philadelphia, Jan. 31st, 1886. 
My dear Aunt, — Your disappointment in my 
change of plan is not greater than mine. I had 
planned for four months ahead, from March. I had 
forty and one things to finish or accomplish before 
my Hospital service began. But things rotated, no 
doubt, for our best. I found I must enter the ]S"ew 
England hospital next May. You know I have given 
up Blockley entirely, but will try the competitive for 
the Woman's Hospital for six months. The friends 
and authorities of the l^ew England Hospital are very 
kind to me. They have made special arrangement for 
me to go there for six months, which is not generally 
allowable at all. Beside, my application went too late, 
all the places were filled, yet they are so anxious 
to help me, that they are going to accept me as an 
extra student or interne. Such students pay board, 
but they make me their guest. Dr. Tyng is also 
willing to take me for six months provided I pass the 
competitive. Now everything depends on my gradu- 
ating. If faithful attendance and diligent study with 


some practical knowledge deserve any reward at all, 
I have no reason to fear next March, but I have to 
wait for it. 

Do not buy me anything for my graduation. Your 
presence will make me more happy than any gift. It 
is not as if I had no memento ; but nothing can be 
added. If you were troubled with wealth, I would 
accept anything you might present me. Kow I hope 
you will present yourselves, which is the richest of 

I had the misfortune to fall on the ice and break 
all the bangles on my right arm. My husband bought 
me a gold bracelet, as I could not go without any- 
thing. If every fall would bring as much gold, would 
you consider it a misfortune 1 I called it so, because 
the money might have bought me an instrument that 
would have been useful or a book that would have 
been instructive. I got another present as a gradu- 
ating student, five weeks in advance. It is a beauti- 
ful gold watch. It was given me by a wealthy lady, 
whom you will probably see in March. 

Our theses, ticket money, and application for de- 
gree were sent in last week. I do not yet know 
whether my "Thesis" is accepted. There were fifty 
pages of it, just fitting, so that not another word could 
have gone in ; the longest one they had. 

It is quite evident that Anandabai was still so 
completely a Hindu that she considered her ban- 


gles as necessary as her saree. I thouglit I saw 
a great change in her, when we met this year 
in October. Not only was she more delicate in 
health, but she seemed to have lost courage. It 
is certain that she did not take and could never 
afterward resume the place she had easily held 
for the last two years in the College Classes. If 
her graduation had depended upon this last year, 
she could not have taken her degree. Her con- 
dition will perhaps explain the following letter, 
written Feb. 8th, 1886 : ■— 

*' Love and duty are sacred and my own. I can 
always love, although I cannot always expect to be 
loved. So I can always perform my own duty, al- 
though I may not persuade others to theirs. I do 
not do this for the promise of any earthly pleasure 
nor even for those termed Heavenly, but for simple 
duty's sake. Heaven, if it be only a place of indul- 
gence and banqueting, would have no charm for me, 
for these might disappear and leave me paralyzed and 
idle. It is always well to look into the future just far 
enough to guide our steps and prepare for any imme- 
diate obstruction, but I think it is foolish, if not worse, 
to mourn over the possible future when the present 
needs all our watchfulness and strength. My physical 
self is like the days of September, and my brain and 
nerves seem * dissected up ' like the warp on the loom, 
distinct and bare, but sensitive." 


She was very unwell, dreading a fresh attack 
of diphtheria, which was however averted. A few 
days later she writes to Mrs. Carpenter : — 

Philadelphia, March 7th, 1886. 

Dear Aunt, — After all I am able to sit down at 
my ease and write to my dtear ones. I am through 
the studies so far as college life is concerned, but, 
oh dear ! there is more that comes after than goes 

Results received yesterday and I am passed. I am 
thankful, for my patience was almost worn out. On 
the last question of the last paper I broke down, and 
could not even see whether I finished my sentence. 
I pinned the papers together and left the room with- 
out even bowing to the Professor. Our Japanese 
friend did very well. The Syrian student, after most 
wonderful and formidable attacks of diseases and 
rewarding her benefactors and well-wishers with her 
ingratitude, was made to leave us. Her condition is 
sadder than death, if death is at all sad. She brought 
tears of pity to my eyes, — eyes that had so far had 
no occasion to shed tears of such pity or disgust. We 
were all miserable on her account. 

Pundita Ramabai arrived safely. The storm and 
low water detained her in the river. I spent two 
full days on the wharf waiting for her. Her child is 
here, a little darling. She is as bright as sunshine 
and as sweet as a fresh rosebud. She must give a 


great deal of comfort to her mother, who has passed 
through too many sorrows for one woman. She was 
brought up and petted by sensitive and loving hearts. 
She is a woman, tender with feeling, as tender as a 
flower, timid as can be and impatient of pain, but her 
courage has outweighed that of the sternest and brav- 
est warrior. She has filled my heart with a real joy. 
I hope you will like her when you see her. I began 
to write this letter yesterday, but so much else came 
in the way ! I went to my Examination at the Col- 
lege at 7.45 this morning, and came home at 2.40 p. m. 
The examination was very long and tedious, though 
it could not be considered hard, I did not have 
much sleep last night and I was very tired ; am so 
tired I can hardly keep my eyes open or my hand 
under control. I am so glad you are going to stay 
a day longer for the lecture of Rama Bai. 

This letter shows how evenly balanced were all 
my dear friend's faculties and powers. Her brain 
acted only in the service of her heart. 

Mrs. Carpenter thinks that the few days covered 
by this letter were the most trying to body and 
brain that Anandabai passed in this country. 
The exposure on the wharf was a very serious 
thing for one as exhausted as she was by the 
College work; but her heart was so warm that 
she thought far less of the result for which she 



had toiled so earnestly for three whole years, than 
of welcoming the devoted and lovely kinswoman 
whom she had never seen. 

She had never seen her, but this was by no 
means the first time Anandabai had shown her 
gifted cousin a warm sympathy and regard. When 
Bamabai was left a widow, and the Joshees knew 
that her independent and vigorous career had cre- 
ated an opposition likely to molest her, a warm 
invitation was sent by Anandabai offering a home 
in her own house to the desolate widow. Eamabai 
was not able to accept the invitation, but from 
that time the strength of a common purpose — the 
determination to elevate the women of their native 
land — sustained the correspondence which had 
then begun. 

On the 10th of March, 1886, 1 went to Phila- 
delphia to remain a day or two with Anandabai, 
to make the acquaintance of the Pundita, and to 
be present at the varied exercises of the week. I 
wrote in my Journal that night : — 

"I have seen Anandabai, Ramabai and her child. 
Ramabai is strikingly beautiful. Her face is a clean- 
cut oval ; her eyes, dark and large, glow with feeling. 
She is a brunette, but her cheeks are full of color. 
Her white widow's saree is drawn closely over her 
head and fastened under her chin. There is nothing 


else about her to suggest the Hindu. I cross-ques- 
tioned Anandabai pretty closely about a possible mix- 
ture of blood. She acknowledged that there is a 
frequent crossing of the Mahratta blood by that of 

At noon, on the 11th of March, I went to the 
Green Koom of the Academy of Music, where the 
Graduation Exercises were to be held. It was full 
of bright young girls and flowers. When we went 
out upon the stage we confronted an audience of 
three thousand persons. 

Anandabai, the Pundita and her pretty little 
child were seated near enough to the front of the 
stage to be distinctly visible to the audience. It 
was a far more memorable day than any of that 
audience knew. 

Anandabai and her kinswoman had sailed from 
India in the same month: Anandabai from Cal- 
cutta to New York; Eamabai from Bombay to 
the sisters at Wantage in England, where she 
embraced Christianity in 1883. 

On the day Anandabai left Liverpool for New 
York, Eamabai landed in England. These two 
women were cousins three times removed, but the 
same courage, the same aspirations animated both. 
Eamabai was the child of Ananta Shastri and his 
second wife, Lakshmibai. Ananta had determined 


to educate his first wife, "but was prevented by the 
bigotry and prejudice of his family and her own. 
She died early, and, when the same obstacles to 
education presented themselves to oppress his 
second wife, Ananta withdrew from the world 
and made his home in the wilderness. Eamabai 
was the youngest of his children ; she grew up 
unfettered in the outer world. It is touching to 
hear her tell how her mother taught her Sanscrit 
in the early morning of each day, waking her with 
caresses and making her very lullabies a lesson 
in language. Ananta spent his large property 
before Eamabai was grown, and spent it chiefly 
in efforts to stimulate the education of Hindu 
women. After the death of her father, she and 
her only surviving brother travelled through the 
country, advocating their father's views. At Cal- 
cutta the pundits received her. A Professor tested 
her knowledge of Sanscrit and the honorary title 
of " Sarasvati " was conferred upon her. Sarasvati 
is the name of the Goddess of Arts and Learning. 

Married and left a widow with one child, she 
determined like Anandabai to devote her life to 
the elevation of her own sex. In England, she be- 
came a Christian. When I asked her why she had 
allowed herself to be baptized she replied, "The 
Shasters contain all the principles of a religious 


life, but they offer us no example of it. In Jesus 
I have the word made flesh. But I do not belong 
to the church of England nor to any other church. 
I told them it must be so, when they baptized me. 
I believe in the Bible, but I will believe in it in 
my own way." 

Before her departure from India, Eamabai had 
founded a society in Poonah to aid in the estab- 
lishment of native schools for girls, and travelled 
throughout the Bombay Presidency to form branch 
societies. When the English Educational Commis- 
sion visited Poonah in September, 1882, Eamabai 
met them in the town hall, with more than three 
hundred Mahratta women and children, and wel- 
comed them with an address in English. So 
impressed was Dr. Hunter, the President of that 
Commission, with -the earnestness of these women, 
that he had Eamabai' s testimony before it trans- 
lated into English. Her plea for the medical edu- 
cation of the native women gave a needed impetus 
to the Countess of Dufferin's movement, — a move- 
ment which owed much more, however, to the 
excitement produced in India by Anandabai's 
address at Serampore and subsequent departure 
for America. 

At Wantage, Eamabai perfected her knowledge 
of the English language, and in 1884 she went to 


the Ladies' College at Cheltenham as Professor of 
Sanscrit. "We had heard much of these two women, 
and now they sat modestly before the immense 
audience that thronged the Academy. How differ- 
ent they were ! One so strikingly beautiful that 
she arrested every eye, the other self-absorbed, un- 
conscious, with her gaze fixed upon the Highest. 
One impulsive, practical, bent on carrying out cer- 
tain plans for the benefit of her people ; the other 
devout, self-controlled, thinking first of all of the 
great mysteries of life and work. 
I quote again from my Journal : — 

"Mrs. Joshee wore a pure white saree richly bor- 
dered with gold. Although not in the least beautiful, 
she is the sweetest impersonation of pure womanliness 
that I have ever seen. All eyes were on her. Ra- 
mabai, who wears the plain white ' Chudda ' of the 
Mahratta widow, has a really handsome face, a deli- 
cate skin flushed with brilliant color. She and her 
little girl look like Spaniards. Neither is graceful, 
while every motion of Anandabai gives pleasure. An 
immense quantity of flowers was distributed at the 
close of Dr. Marshall's address, and Anandabai had 
many valuable presents, books, instruments and 
money, to help her carry out her purposes. She 
could hardly be insensible to the fact that she was the 
observed of all observers ; she must have heard the 


frequent and honorable mention of her name, nor 
could she have been deaf to the applause of that 
immense audience when she went forward to take 
her Diploma, but not even the quiver of her lips 
betrayed her." 

There was not a vacant seat in the Academy 
when the exercises began. People stood against 
the walls and under the galleries, sat upon the 
steps, and filled every aisle and doorway. The 
students of the College filled the front seats in 
the pit, and the Faculty with their invited guests 
crowded the stage. * 

A mass of flowers in baskets, bouquets and va- 
ried designs, covered the footlights and completely 
hid the piles of costly gifts, to be presented by 
friends of the students to the graduates after the 
Diplomas were given out. 

The next evening Eamabai gave her first ad- 
dress in America, on the subject which fills all her 
thoughts. For an hour before this began, we re- 
ceived in an ante-room about eighty ladies of the 
highest social position, whom Dr. Bodley wished 
to introduce to her Indian friends. The audience 
in the Hall itself was estimated at from five to 
six hundred. Eamabai spoke as Anandabai does, 
as if English were her native tongue, but there 
is a certain piquancy and originality in all that 


Anandabai says, not to be found elsewhere. The 
audience was reverent, struck by the speaker's 
beauty and awed by her enthusiasm and elo- 
quence. [N'ever shall I forget the hush which fol- 
lowed her appeal when, after clasping her hands 
in silence for a few moments, she lifted her voice 
to God in earnest entreaty for her countrj^women. 
The whole city echoed the next day with won- 
dering inquiry and explanation. 

A day or two after, the Joshees and the Pundita 
were received by the Century Club, and this en- 
tertainment was followed by invitations of many 
kinds to many places in and out of town. 

I had never seen Gopal Joshee, until I went to 
Philadelphia, on this memorable week, but I had 
heard of his visit to my own house, and observed 
the manner in which he bore himself toward his 
wife's best friends. During this visit prolonged 
for some days, after Anandabai had taken her 
diploma, I saw less of her than I desired, I was 
so anxious to possess myself of a fair and candid 
opinion of this strange man. After the first cour- 
tesies when we met, he was so absolutely silent 
for some days in my presence, that my friends 
thought I must have offended him. After this, 
he talked very freely before me but not to me, 
and I only knew that he was conscious of my 


existence, by tlie readiness with wMcli he aided 
me when I wanted copies of the leading papers 
or any special information. It is with great pain 
that I speak of him for Anandabai loved him, 
but it is impossible to write her life truly, with- 
out suggesting the "tangle" which his presence 
brought into her daily life. 

Anandabai had been most generously and deli- 
cately aided by the ladies of Philadelphia, and 
this aid it was easy for them to render because 
she accepted it for her people and her work. 
While awaiting her husband's coming, she had 
no idea, that instead of asking for a few months' 
leave, he would be obliged to throw up the work 
by which they had hitherto lived. When I asked 
her why he had done so, she said briefly and with 
a deep sigh "He is tired," but would not pursue 
the subject. After his coming, he shared the gen- 
erous and provident kindness which had been 
extended to her, but he received it differently 
and she knew it. 

In Dr. Bodley's Preface to the "High Caste 
Hindu Woman," a book written by Kamabai, she 
says of Dr. Joshee, — 

" Ramabai's chapter on the married life of the Hindu 
woman reveals to the Western Reader what it was for 
this refined, intellectual person, whose faculties devel- 


oped rapidly under Western opportunities, and whose 
scientific acquirements placed her high in rank among 
her peers in the college class, to accept again the posi- 
tion awarded her by the Code of Manu. That she 
did accept it, that 'until death she was patient of 
hardships, self-controlled, and strove to fulfil that most 
excellent duty prescribed for wives,' is undoubted. 
Let those who recognize this herculean attempt find 
in it a clue to the influences which dealt the final 
fatal blow." 

In a letter written by Gopal to one of his 
friends in this country, during the distracted days 
that followed his wife's death in Poonah, he says, 
" I wonder if she would not be living still, if I had 
never gone to America ? " 

Strange that he should have written this, and 
stranger still would he have deemed it, had he 
known that the one thought that rang through my 
brain, as we sat together day after day in Phila- 
delphia was this : " He will make life impossible 
to her." 

This year presented peculiar causes for anxiety, 
and for Mr. Joshee's excitability, dissatisfaction 
and restlessness there is some excuse to be found 
in the condition of his wife's health, and the im- 
possibility of tempting her appetite with suitable 
food wherever she might be. Gopal had entered 



the United States by the wrong gate. The rest- 
less life of the West, the disorganizations of the 
border, did not give him the key he needed to 
understand the Eastern States. He saw very 
little, but thought he saw everything. This how- 
ever he did perceive, that Anandabai's health was 
failing, and unable to aid her himself, half frantic 
with affection and anxiety, he required of us all 
what it was impossible to give. Little did he 
know that it was chiefly owing to Dr. Bodley's 
tender foresight, that his wife was still living. To 
provide her with an abundance of nutritious vege- 
table food was often impossible, and there was not 
a physician anywhere who would not have said 
she needed broth and delicate meats; but these 
she could not take. 

It was probably in one of the fits of irritation 
produced by circumstances that he had not been 
in the country long enough to understand, that 
Gopal wrote a letter to " The Index," on the 14th 
of March, 1886. This letter concerned "child 
marriage," a subject brought into most unhappy 
prominence by the discussion of the story of 
Eukhmabai, a young Brahmin lady who, betrothed 
to a worthless and aged husband in childhood, 
refused to consummate the abominable contract, 
and was sent to prison in consequence. Gopal's 


letter insanely denies the plain facts of this case, 
with which all Europe was already familiar. In 
it he makes assertions which he knew were not 
true, and assumes a position in regard to the 
American people which must have given sharp 
pain to his gentle wife. While arrogance and 
assumption breathe in every line of his letter, he 
coolly demands that Americans shall "say no 
word against his country 1 " All this was written 
at a moment when he listened daily to the sad 
exposition which Eamabai was offering to the 

Any one who will turn to " The Index " for April 
1st, 1886, will be astonished at the forbearance of 
its Editor. In an article published by Max Miiller 
in the London Times of Aug. 22nd, 1887, the in- 
terested reader may prove to himself how utterly 
unreliable were Mr. Joshee's statements. 

Whoever had walked the streets of Philadel- 
phia in modest peace with Anandabai, could not 
fail to find a difference when Gopal was added to 
the party. 

His excited manner, his loud and rapid talk 
attracted the attention of the crowd, and this was 
held by the floating blue wrap, the white scarf, 
and dark turban which he always wore. 

About this time the beautiful dress worn by 


Anandabai on the day of her graduation became 
the theme of public discussion, and as it was 
necessary to correct various errors concerning 
it, the following account was sent to the local 
papers : — 

" The friends of Dr. Anandabai Joshee who are 
accustomed to associate a simple and childlike sin- 
cerity with everything relating to her, were at first 
amused and then a little pained, when several of the 
daily papers spoke of her receiving, her degree in a 
robe ' trimmed with tinsel ! ' 

" There was no more ' tinsel ' on her robe than 
there is in her character. The snowy gold-bordered 
dress she wore, was part of her wedding outfit, made 
to her father's order. It was made in the old city of 
Chunder, famous through many centuries for the pro- 
duction of the finest hand-made India mull. This 
long narrow garment is the usual saree or upper gar- 
ment of the Mahratta women, but Anandabai does 
not wear it in the usual way. The Pundits found the 
fashion among the dresses worn by her ancestors when 
they dwelt on snow-covered hills. This garment is 
made of a kind of India muslin called 'chally.' 

" This word, like our word * shawl,' is derived from 
the name of King Shawliwan, in whose reign and at 
whose desire shawls were first made eighteen hundred 
years ago. 

" This muslin saree is four yards long and two and 


a half wide. The gold border is four inches wide 
round the bottom, and more than nine up and down 
the front. Beside the wide stripe there are two nar- 
row onesj and these borders are not even made of 
gold thread, but of flat drawn gold so pure that it 
washes like a gold ring. This border is so very heavy 
that no machine-made goods would hold it. It is 
equally perfect and beautiful on the two sides. No 
one who has seen the saree daintily worn can fail to 
be charmed with it, and I need hardly point out to 
those who have seen the Tanagra statuettes, that in 
many cases it is the saree which imparts the peculiar 
charm to the Greek figurine." 

Probably nothing in her life was so trying to 
Dr. Joshee as the round of visits which now 
began in her husband's company. She could not 
escape from the group of friends who listened 
while he poured out in his rapid impulsive way 
his bitter complaint against the country and peo- 
ple which she so dearly loved. Alone I had 
known her more than once to interpose her gentle 
word, but before others her duty as a Hindu 
wife forbade her to speak. Her silence seemed 
to strangers like sullenness. Gopal had been ac- 
customed to this in her younger days, and it did 
not affect him as it did those who had seen 
her in her happy freedom before his arrival. It 


had one serious result, however; those who saw 
her for the first time after her husband reached 
Philadelphia, especially those who met her first 
in Massachusetts, never saw the delightful and 
fascinating woman so beloved by her friends in 

On the 16th of April Dr. Joshee left Eoselle 
for Philadelphia, intending to be examined for 
Blockley Hospital. She expected to pass the 
summer at the " New England Hospital for Wo- 
men and Children," and to enter Blockley for 
practice the following winter. 

But her plans were very suddenly changed. 
Dr. Bodiey had been asked to supply a resident 
physician to the female wards of the new Albert 
Edward Hospital at Kolhapur, and about this 
time the following letter was received : — - 

To Dr. Rachel Bodley, 

WomatCs Medical College, Philadelphia, Pa, 

Kolhapur, March lOth, 1886. 
Dear Madam, — I beg you will kindly excuse me 
for not replying to your letter of Nov. 25th before. 
After I wrote you my first letter, the fact that Dr. 
Anandabai Joshee would appear for her final exami- 
nation at your College in the current month, was 
brought to my notice by the Hon. Eao Bahadur 


M. Gr. Eanade. Thinking that nothing could be more 
desirable than to have a native of India for our *' Lady 
Doctor," I placed myself at once in communication 
with my friend, that he might ascertain from Mrs. 
Joshee whether she would accept the appointment 
alluded to. I hear that she is willing. 

I beg therefore that you will do me the favor to 
offer the place to Mrs. Joshee on the following terms. 

1. Mrs. Joshee's designation to be Lady Doctor of 

2. Her salary per month to be Es. 300 at first, to 
be increased to 400 after two years' service, and to 
500 after five years'. 

3. A house for habitation with ordinary furniture 
to be provided, but this not to include service or 

4. The expenses of a single passage from the United 
States to India will be borne by the State of Kolhapur, 
on condition that this be refunded in the event of 
Mrs. Joshee's leaving the service in less than one 

5. The engagement shall be for seven years, but 
may be terminated by either party on giving six 
months' notice. 

6. Mrs. Joshee will be in charge of the Albert 
Edward Hospital, subject to the general supervision 
of the Durbar Doctor, and instruct a class of girls in 
medicine, etc. 


7. Private practice will be allowed to any extent 
that will not interfere with public duties, but no fees 
are to be charged for attending on the ladies of the 
palace, or on the wives of contributors to the Hospital 

I assure you that the supervision of the Durbar 
Doctor will be friendly. I feel sure that Doctor Sin- 
clair, our Durbar Surgeon, and Doctor Joshee will 
pull well together. 

Mrs. Joshee seems to think that we mean our pu- 
pils to be nurses only. Our object is much higher, 

to enable them to be general practitioners. 

When the Bombay scheme for Female Medical 
Education, which has been taken in hand by Lady 
Eeay, the wife of our Governor, has been perfected, 
it is our intention to have the Kolhapur Establishment 
affiliated to the Central College. Close to Mrs. Joshee's 
quarters will be provided quarters for the pupils, that 
they may be under her constant supervision. 

In conclusion, I have to request that you will com- 
municate the wishes of Mrs. Joshee by the return 
mail. If she accepts, I shall want a letter from her 
to that effect, stating also whether she can be at the 
Hospital by the first of June. 

Thanking you heartily for your prompt reply to 
my first letter and for your offer of assistance, 
I remain yours sincerely, 

Meherje Cooverje, 

The Dewan of Kolhapur. 


I am sorry to say that I have no copy of Dr. 
Joshee's reply to this letter, which was written on 
the 18th of April, but one remarkable sentence 
in it is impressed upon my memory. 

After a cordial acceptance of the appointment 
Anandabai went on to say: — 

"There is nothing in the seven conditions which 
you name, that causes me any uneasiness, but if any 
question were likely to arise under it, I might object 
to the seventh. 

" Our Shasters require us to impart the gifts of 
healing and of religious truth without pay, and to 
this practice I shall adhere ; but if I ever meant to 
take a fee from any one, it would assuredly be from 
those who are rich and powerful, and never from those 
who are poor and depressed." 

On the 12th of June, 1886, the Dewan of Kol- 
hapnr, an officer of the government correspond- 
ing to our Secretary of State, acknowledged Dr. 
Joshee's acceptance of the position in the Albert 
Edward Hospital, and consented to allow her to 
spend the summer in Eoxbury as she desired. 

She intended to sail in January, 1887. 

It was about this time that I began to feel very 
anxious about Anandabai's health. The climate 
of the United States at its best seems fatal to 
the Asiatic. The Aleut fares no better than the 


Hindu on these shores, and when disease attacks 
either, it is astonishing how quickly the end 
comes. The cKmate of Cutch and of Calcutta 
had been very injurious to Dr. Joshee's health, and 
she was depressed by unnatural lassitude when she 
reached Philadelphia. The home of her dearest 
friend, which speedily became her home also, was 
in Eoselle, in a part of ISTew Jersey subject to 
malarial and depressing influences. If we had 
had an examination in 1883, the lesson of her life 
would have been lost. The one thing that might 
have saved her was a long and steady residence in 
Colorado or New Mexico, with a light heart. It 
was because she was so happy the first two years 
that we were deceived as to her health. As soon 
as she had accepted the position at Kolhapur, her 
whole future weighed upon her. Assuming by 
virtue of her larger earnings the duties of the head 
of her family, she had to look forward, not only to 
supporting herself and performing her duties at the 
Hospital, but upon her would fall the care of her 
husband's mother and younger brothers. Her first 
duty on her return would be to go to Nassik, 
where they resided, and complete arrangements for 
their removal to Kolhapur. At this time she sup- 
posed she should be well enough to go to India 
alone, and it was thought that Mr. Joshee might 


remain for some time in England and America. I 
have said that she was to have the care of her hus- 
band's family, but what sort of influence were they 
to exert over her ? She had said, '' I will go to 
America as a Hindu, and I will remain a Hindu. 
I will be in all things his deserving wife." What 
says the Shaster ? 

"For the ancient sages declare that a bride is given 
to the family of her husband and not to her husband 
alone." (Apastamba, 2nd, 10th, 27th, 3d.) 

And again in the IXth of Manu, 22nd, we read : 

" Whatever be the qualities of the man with whom 
a woman is united in lawful marriage, such qualities 
she must assume, as a river mingles with the ocean." 

Could she indeed remain his " deserving wife " ? 
Was this any longer possible to her? No word 
escaped her lips. Obediently she stooped to lift 
her heavy burden ; but those who loved her, felt 
her heart sinking, although her words were the 
words of cheerful courage. 

To the New England Hospital she went as an 
invited guest on the 2nd of May. She would 
have "ample opportunity," she was told, "to visit 
other infirmaries and asylums not unfriendly 
to women." Such an arrangement, it was said, 


"would give no opportunity for the care and 
responsibility devolving upon an interne, but 
would give her the chance to see a great variety 
of work." 

What she actually encountered the following 
letter will show. It was something wholly un- 
suited to the delicate condition which her friends 
hardly suspected, and of which the authorities at 
the Hospital could not be aware. 

KoxBURY, May 3d, 1886. 

My dear Aunt, — I reached here last evening at 
about 7 o'clock. Two of my college friends came 
very kindly to meet me, so that made it pleasant all 
through. I have already taken charge of the medical 
ward here. I went to the Maternity to see a case, soon 
after I arrived, before supper. This morning at seven 
I visited the medical ward. At 8.30 I went with 
another Interne to the Surgical. I paid another visit 
at 12.30 with Dr. P. This is one of the regular 

I have to visit my own ward again this evening, so 
you see how busy I am ! I have to make three regular 
visits beside that with Dr. P. to all the Hospital, after 
which the consulting physician, resident physician 
and the Internes meet in the office to discuss the 
cases. My sleeping-room is on the third floor, dining- 
room on the lowest, patients all over. I have to fill 


up the papers that belong to my own patients. This 
is the first time I have sat down. I am so tired ! 

The spot in which the Hospital stands is one of 
the most delightful that I have seen. It is perfectly 
charming. It was so cold in the house, that I came 
out on the lawn to write. It is very sunny, but very 
windy, so I don't think I shall stay long. 

When I read those words, I thought I knew 
when the final blow was struck. Was there no 
one to warn her ? Exhausted, chilled, she needed 
as much warmth as a tropical bird, and she went 
out of doors to write on the 3d of May, in a 
Boston east wind ! She goes on : — 

Will you please give the Eoorhacks my address, 
and tell them not to send me the knife for wood 
carving or anything else. I have to be moving from 
room to room and place to place, and have no time 
for anything. After all, I have regular duty to per- 
form. One of my college friends has left the Hospital 
entirely, the other is miles off in the Dispensary. 

You will be sorry to hear that I have such a cold 
in my throat that I cannot talk, only whisper. There 
is measles in the Annex, so one Interne must stay 
there. Two others have left. Dr. Hall is here, but 
Dr. Sterling has not yet come. With love, your 



Tlie letters that followed recorded days equally 
crowded with work, although occasionally varied 
with pleasant change. She went to a tea at the 
"Woman's Club, to the Woman's Industrial Union, 
and took many drives with Dr. Keller to see 
some of her most interesting surgical cases. 
Writing of Boston, she says, " I am so impressed 
with the beauty of Boston ! I am ready to say it 
is the prettiest place I have seen in America." 
No one seems to have seen how ill she was, and 
oh, I know without asking, that through all this 
time no one saw the real Anandabai ! It must 
have been in the early part of her stay that she 
received a visit from Mrs. Underwood. Mrs. 
Underwood went to invite her to deliver an 
address at the coming anniversary of the Free 
Eeligious Association, in which she should explain 
her own position and the needs of women in 
India. "There entered," writes Mrs. Underwood, 
"a graceful, childlike creature, the lustrous eyes 
of whose dark grave face sought those of her 
visitor in quiet scrutiny." Dr. Joshee declined 
this invitation on the ground of her duties at 
the Hospital. 

My mind had been a little withdrawn from her 
at this time by changes in my own life. I did 
not hear from my friend as I expected, till 


on the first of June Mr. Joshee wrote to Mrs. 
Carpenter that his wife had decided to give up 
her studies at the Hospital, and see if perfect 
rest would not prepare her for her duties at Kol- 
hapur. I was hurrying North at the moment, 
and reached the Hospital on the morning of 
June 5th, only to be shocked at the announce- 
ment that Mrs. Joshee was confined to her room. 
I found her lying in bed, pale and quiet. As we 
sat hand in hand looking into each other's eyes 
for a long while, I thought with satisfaction how 
lately she had said, "I have no need of words. 
I know what my friends think without words." 
There were many questions that I wished to ask, 
but she was in no condition to talk. To my sur- 
prise, she did not seem anxious about herself, 
but was incommoded by some internal difficulty 
brought on by the constant going up and down 
stairs, which the Hospital Service required. What 
little talk we had was about Eamabai and her 
plans. Dr. Joshee was expecting to work with 
her in India. She was grieved to give up her 
Hospital Work, but intended to go that afternoon 
to visit Dr. Keller, and from thence by short 
stages, making visits at Providence and Hartford, 
to Koselle. I think she was not able to move 
till the 9th of June, and it was perhaps while she 


was resting peacefully at Dr. Keller's that she 
rallied enough to go to Mrs. Underwood for an 
evening, and meet a few friends. 

Of this meeting Mrs. Underwood wrote as 
follows : — 

" She wore no bonnet, but instead a fawn-colored 
wrap enveloped her finely shaped head and gracefully 
draped her shoulders j this was removed on entering. 
Her robe of some fine dark wooUen material was 
edged to the depth of several inches with gold-colored 
embroidery, and in spite of its flowing drapery at one 
arm, fitted nicely her plump petite form ; gold brace- 
lets adorned her wrists. The dark face was round, 
with full lips; she had a handsomely shaped brow, 
broad and intellectual looking. Between the eyebrows 
was a small tattooed mark, in shape somewhat like a 
cross. The eyes were beautiful and expressive, large, 
black, softly shining, as capable of smiles as of tears, 
with a strangely pathetic look in them. The prevail- 
ing expression of Dr. Joshee's face was grave, dignified, 
almost sad, but the rare smile which marked her 
appreciation of the ludicrous was charmingly bright 
and girlish. The talk drifted during the evening into 
channels which in spite of her modest diffidence drew 
her out. 

"The car of Juggernaut was discussed, and in speak- 
ing of the mothers who distraught with poverty some- 
times throw their babes into the Ganges, Dr. Joshee 


said that during her medical experience in Philadel- 
phia a large number of new-born infants, either mur- 
dered or deserted, found their way into the dissecting- 
room, and she might as well on her return to India 
relate this fact, making it a custom of American moth- 
ers to kill or desert their children, and adducing it 
as a result of Christian belief, as to charge the Hindu 
faith with the drowning so often reported. 

"In discussing the right of men to kill and eat 
animals, Dr. Joshee said that she had lived in America 
for three years without feeling the need of any other 
food than that she ate in India. In speaking of 
Edwin Arnold's Poems, by which she meant the 
* Song Celestial ' and * Indian Idylls ' she said he had 
not, exaggerated but had sometimes failed to catch the 
subtle spiritual meanings of the ancient writings." 

Of the " Light of Asia," a Buddhist poem, her 
judgment would probably have been different. 
The King of Siam, in writing to the author to con- 
fer upon him the " Order of the White Elephant," 
says, " I can see that some of your ideas are not 
the same as ours ; " and when Mr. Arnold visited 
Ceylon, the Chief Priest said to him, " The reason 
that we wish to honour you is because you have 
helped to make Buddhists know how much they 
ought to do and be to rise to the level of their own 


" She spoke sensibly of ' Christian Science/ said she 
had taken several lessons in that art of healing, and 
thought she saw a natural basis on which it could be 
explained. She spoke of phrenology, and said that in 
dissecting the brain she had found reason to dispute 
the claims made by its enthusiastic advocates. 

" Her acquaintance with American and English 
scientists and persons of note was something phe- 
nomenal. As she glanced over a large collection of 
portrait photographs, a word or two would show that 
she was familiar with the story of each man and his 

The Mends of Anandabai are grateful for the 
brief record here preserved. There is no adequate 
representation of her varied and stimulating con- 
versation. In reference to what she said of diet, 
she was doubtless glad to reinforce her husband's 
opinion ; but I think it certain that if she could 
have taken animal food, or at least broths, her 
chance of life in this climate would have been 

It was only a few days before I saw Anandabai, 
that at the meeting of the Free Eeligious Asso- 
ciation in Boston, during the last week in May, 
Gopal Vinyak Joshee had delivered an address 
which must deeply have pained her. In this 
address he asserted that " Christianity lacks every 


noble attribute; that we are told we must be- 
lieve as the Christians do, or be immediately 
damned ; that this is not done by one sect but 
by all, including the broad Unitarian." He 
charged further that Christianity lacked justice, 
righteousness, and humanity; that charity was ab- 
sent through the length and breadth of Christen- 
dom; that Moses and Jesus imposed upon the 
credulity of their followers ; and he sustained these 
statements by arguments as incoherent as they 
were absurd. Had they been those of a bewil- 
dered American, no one would have thought of 
them twice, but as the first definite expression 
known to the audience of Hindu thought, they 
had a certain interest. Anandabai was of course 
busied with her duties at the Hospital, but she 
who had no "need of words" could not fail to 
know in what mood her husband went to that 
meeting, and to suffer for it. No one knew bet- 
ter than he in his saner moods tliat to be true 
his statements needed modifications that he did 
not give, and that it was the same human frailty 
that made his own country people worship idols, 
and not Christianity, that should be made to an- 
swer for the failures of the church. Now that 
we know that Anandabai was never to devote a 
life-time to medical work, it is impossible not to 


wish that she had left the operating-room that 
day, and carried her own message to that meeting. 
How tenderly and with what true appreciation 
would she have spoken of her own indebtedness 
to Christian charity, justice, and sympathy. '' I 
am not a Christian because I have no need to 
be one," she would have said ; "but it is through 
Jesus that God has spoken to you. If I do not 
need your Bible, neither do you need my Shasters." 
While she was in Philadelphia she had be- 
come acquainted with the Rev. Charles G. Ames. 
Between him and her there was no "need of 
words." She entered into his spirit, and it was 
her greatest delight to listen to his preaching in 
Spring Garden Street. 

« She was often at the church," writes Mr. Ames, 
"and showed her interest by lingering long at the 
close, and accepting with sweet and gracious silence, 
and hand pressure, all the greetings of the people. 
It was not customary for her to initiate conversation, 
but once engaged, she talked remarkably well, and 
generally on serious subjects. She was a guileless 
and genuine person who knew her own mind and 
saw clearly ' the path.' Her capacity for self-direction, 
coupled with rare and generous justice, promised a 
career of great usefulness in her native land, where, 
alas ! her countrywomen will never know their loss." 


It was one of the great disappointments of her 
brief stay in Boston that she had no opportu- 
nity to make the acquaintance of James Freeman 
Clarke. She had read his books and liked them. 
If she had been well, she would have gone to see 
him. She did not like to return to India without 
meeting him. 

Her disappointment in connection with the 
work at the Hospital was much greater than she 
ever acknowledged. She had the highest opinion 
of its administration. 

I went from Boston to Concord early in July. 
I heard there of the address delivered by Gopal 
one day in June at Mr. Chamberlain's, regarding 
missionary life in India. This address was writ- 
ten out for the "Index" of July 22d, 1886. Can 
any one who reads it believe it to be the pro- 
duction of a sane man, provided that man be, as 
Gopal Joshee undoubtedly was, both cultivated 
and intelligent ? 

Forgetting what he had said at the Free Ke- 
ligious meeting in May, he said here, "I do not 
speak against Christ and his teachings, but I find 
his followers unworthy of the name ; " and goes 
on: "I have been with missionaries for the last 
twenty-two years. The more I look into their 
characters, the darker is the dye that stains 


them." "Christians have manufactured all the 
vices, and exported them to countries where sim- 
plicity and innocence reigned," — and to confirm 
his charges against the missionaries, he would 
have us believe that in travelling to this country 
with his wife, some of them put meat into her 
plate, to force her through hunger to break the 
requirements of her caste ! 

If all the rest of the world had reason to com- 
plain of the church, what right had Gopal Joshee 
to make such complaint ? It was a missionary of 
the Presbyterian Church who came to his aid and 
forwarded his letters to Dr. Wilder, when he first 
desired to send his wife to America. It was Mr. 
and Mrs. Thorburn, missionaries at Calcutta, who 
watched over her and protected her, when with 
insane precipitation her husband would have sent 
her to this country alone. It was the authorities 
of the Baptist College, in the town consecrated to 
Henry Martyn's memory, who granted their hall 
to Anandabai, when the clamor of the natives at 
Serampore interfered with the transaction of the 
public business. It was under the convoy of 
missionaries that she finally came to America; 
and the friends who received and cherished her 
in Eoselle and Philadelphia were Christians, and 
others were clergy of the "broad Unitarian" 


church. If there had been a spark of nobleness 
in this Gopal's breast, would he not have known 
how to tell his truth without repulsing his best 
friends ? 

Some one, at the close of the lecture, asked Mr. 
Joshee if what he had said of the Missionaries 
applied to Mr. Dall. He hesitated a moment, and 
then said " I do not know Mr. Dall." And yet, 
when a month later the news of Mr. Ball's death 
had come, he wrote to me that I could not im- 
agine " how much he was beloved in India ! " 

It happened about this time that Mr. Joshee 
and Anandabai were invited to attend a mission- 
ary meeting a few miles from New York. The 
friends whom they were visiting accompanied 
them with fear and trembling, having frequently 
heard Gopal express himself as he did in his 
letter to " The Index ; " but to their surprise, he 
delivered a delightful address which pleased every- 
body. He told pleasant stories, described the 
missionary buildings and schools, and was loudly 

" What does this mean, Mr. Joshee ? " said one 
of his friends, iodignant at what she considered 
his duplicity. " How does this agree with what 
you were telling me last night ? " "I must tell 
them what they want to hear," said he, as if it 


were a point of manners; "this is what they 
were expecting ! " 

Such transparent manoeuvring would hardly 
seem worth while, and this matter concerns us 
only as it affected the health and spirits of Dr. 
Joshee. Obediently she went with her husband 
to Concord, sitting by him throughout his long 
tirade, silent and suffering. " She does not look 
very attractive," said a lady in the audience, " but 
I wish she would tell us what she thinks." 

On the first of July she reached Koselle. Her 
friends there saw that something needed to be 
done, but a thorough medical examination does 
not seem to have been thought of. 

Finally, Dr. Joshee started on the 10th of July 
with Mrs. Carpenter's oldest daughter on a jour- 
ney to Delaware County, New York. Here the 
elevation was about fifteen hundred feet above the 
sea-level. Whether her lungs were in a condition 
to bear the sudden change from the lowlands of 
New Jersey may be doubted. The first day she 
complained of pain and nausea. The next she 
was better and wrote : — 

" We are having lovely times. I have not botanized, 
but we roam about and work. Sometimes we find 
nice little strawberry patches and we eat of the fruit 
heartily. The day before yesterday Eighmie and I 



went to Aunt Jenny's. I took my ' crazy ' work 
with me, and made one block." 

But this cheerful strain could not last. On 
the 20th of July these words came to Mrs. 
Carpenter : — 

" How I wish you were here. I won't stay much 
longer, for I have been ill ever since I came. I am 
having chills three times a day, and fever. My whole 
body is aching. If you do not come within a reason- 
able time, I shall leave this place and go to you. I 
am afraid I shall not see you much before I go to 

In this letter she mentions having been for ten 
hours in attendance on a difficult delivery. On 
the 23d she continues : — 

" I am now having two chills daily, and fever after 
each one. My throat is so inflamed that it keeps me 
coughing all the time. Last night I did not have five 
minutes' rest." 

It is evident that she had been for some time a 
victim of malaria, but had not had enough vitality 
to develop chills. As soon as the invigorating 
quality of the mountain air made itself felt, they 
were exhibited. Her husband now went to her, 
and in a few days the Carpenters followed. It 
had been all along intended that Dr. Bodley, 


Dr. Josliee, and Eamabai should go from Eoch- 
ester about this time to Magara, Cincinnati, and 
Chicago, perhaps even to St. Louis. So little 
did those who loved Anandabai best, realize her 
condition, that it was thought this long and ex- 
hausting journey might benefit her. When Mrs. 
Carpenter reached her, in Delaware County, she 
found her bright and cheerful, but with a trouble- 
some cough. Anandabai was busy putting to- 
gether a silli quilt, the various blocks of which 
had been contributed by her American friends. 
In spite of all that she and her friends could do it 
could not be finished, and was laid aside till her 
return to Eoselle. She knew that Hospital work 
would leave her no time for it in India. 

Dean Bodley, who never loses an opportunity 
to advance the interests of women, had forwarded 
an account of the graduation exercises in Phila- 
delphia to her Majesty Queen Victoria, who has 
been supposed, possibly with injustice, to disap- 
prove of the medical education of women. Early 
in August Dr. Bodley received in acknowledg- 
ment of her communication the following letter 
from Sir Henry Ponsonby, the Queen's Private 

It was addressed to the British legation in this 


From Windsor July 14th, 1886. 
I am commanded by the Queen to request that 
you will kindly thank Dr. Bodley for having sent to 
her Majesty the account of Dr. Joshee's graduation at 
the Woman's Medical College of Pennsylvania, and 
to assure you that the Queen has read it with much 

On the ninth of August, Anandabai went to 
Eochester. Her husband had gone a few days in 
advance, and two days after Mrs. Carpenter re- 
ceived the following touching letter: — 

Eochester, N. Y., Aug. 10th, 1886. 

My dear Aunt, — I arrived at the station at 9.05 
p. M. and at this place at 10.10 p. m. I had a very 
pleasant and comfortable journey. I was not at all 
sick, and did not cough more than six or seven times. 
I was not at all hungry, and ate nothing until after 
7 o'clock. Mr. Joshee did not come to meet me in 
time, but it was not his fault. I wrote him that the 
train arrived at 9.55, so he did not start till after I 
had arrived. I inquired at the station and took the 
tramway near it. I told the conductor where I wanted 
to go. He told me where to change cars and where 
to walk on the street. Every house was dark and I 
could not tell where I was. 

Finally I found some people sitting on a piazza, 
and asked them what number their house bore. 


They said seventy, so I turned and went back. Mr. 
Joshee came in forty minutes after I found the house. 
I had a terrible coughing spell in the street car. I 
found a white piece which I thought was five cents, 
and dropped it in. The good driver looked in the 
box and asked me if I had put in some money. I 
said, Yes, when he showed me that I had put in 25 
cents. He was very sorry, and so was I, but I did 
not say anything. The honest driver could not open 
the box, but he managed so nicely that I got twenty 
cents back. A gentleman who stepped in was told by 
the driver of my mistake and paid me his fare ; nor 
did the driver let anybody put in another fare till I 
had my twenty cents back. I could not help feeling 
extremely grateful to the stranger for his kindness. 
My impression is that the drivers are honest. This is 
the way I have always found people. My experience 
is better than Timon's. 

I can't write any better and cough too. 

Affectionately yours, 


On the 20tli of August the following letter 
came to Mrs. Carpenter, but not in Anandabai's 
handwriting. It was dictated to her companion, 
and shows an utter self-forgetfulness, in the deadly 
grasp of her disease. Dr. Bodley found herself 
unable to take the journey, for which she prob- 
ably considered Anandabai unfit. This settled, 


Anandabai planned with cheerful courage for her- 
self, and strove in this her last struggle against 
fate to gratify the trivial but natural curiosity 
of those she met. 

EOCHESTER, Aug. 18tli, 1887. 

My dear Aunt, — Yom* letters are at hand. Dr. 
Bodley is not able to go with me, so I shall leave 
Rochester for the Falls on the 20th. Mr. Joshee 
will go with me as far as the Falls. He will put me 
in the cars for Chicago, where my friend will meet 
me. She will show me everything worth seeing in 
that City. From Chicago I shall buy a ticket to 
Warrensburg, Missouri, where Dr. Smith will meet 
me. I shall leave Dr. Smith to go to Cincinnati, 
where I shall meet Dr. Bodley. Will you be kind 
enough to send my red silk saree which is in the 
trunk, and either my shawl or my graduating dress ? 
My friends are so disappointed that I have not any 
pretty dresses with me ! and Dr. Smith wants me to 
bring some pretty sarees. They will not get lost if 
they are expressed. My cough is not any better. 
Love to all. 

In some way Dr. Bodley forced her own plans 
to bend to Anandabai's need, for before Anandabai 
could start she joined her with Eamabai at Eoch- 
ester, and it was at once decided that the Western 
journey must not be undertaken. 


They determined to go to the Falls and from 
thence to Philadelphia, that Anandabai might 
have rest and treatment at the Woman's Hospital. 
At Carlisle, on the route to Philadelphia, there is 
an Indian school superintended by my friend Capt. 
Pratt, under the auspices of the United States 
Government. Dr. Joshee felt the most intense 
interest in everything relating to the colored races 
in this country, and had long desired to visit this 
especial school, where Indian youth of both sexes 
are trained in such practical knowledge as will 
fit them for civilized life. 

In spite of such terrible suffering as her disease 
now involved, her interest did not flag, and it 
was to gratify her that it was decided to stop 
at Carlisle on the way to Philadelphia. On 
the 27th of August I received in Buffalo a line 
or two dictated by Anandabai, and written by 
Dr. Bodley in the Central Depot, where they were 
obliged to wait more than an hour for a train that 
would go direct to Carlisle. Why could I not 
have met her and gone with her ? Had I done 
so, I should have endeavored to prevent her im- 
mediate departure, and the terrible suffering of 
the journey to India might have been averted. 

She greatly enjoyed her brief glimpse of the 
Carlisle school. After remaining for ten days at 


the Woman's Hospital in Philadelphia, Eamabai 
carried her home to Eoselle. 

Here her last month in America was to be 
spent. She fuUy believed that there was a chance 
of restoration in the sea-voyage and her native air ; 
but a few words spoken at Eoxbury showed me 
that if the end came, she was ready. To her the 
thought of death was not — 

" So much even as the lifting of a latch, 
Only a step into the open air, 
Out of a tent aheady luminous 
With light that shone through its transparent walls." 

These words, taken from Longfellow's " Golden Le- 
gend," had their origin in the fervid imagination 
of Father Taylor, but they would have dropped 
naturally from Anandabai's lips. She had come 
to see clearly through those "transparent walls," 
and the most bigoted missionary might have been 
content to hear her say, " Write me as one who 
loves her fellow-men." She expected if she reached 
Bombay alive to go first to ISTassik, where her 
husband's mother resided, and make arrangements 
for the removal of the whole family to Kolhapur, 
where she intended to provide for them. Fresh 
anxieties would wait upon this step, for ISTassik 
is the centre of Brahminism in the Bombay Presi- 
dency. She put them steadily aside, determined 


to cast no wilful shadow over the last days with 
those she loved. 

Of those days Mrs Carpenter shall tell the 

" Her strength was so far reduced that during the 
four weeks that she remained with us the greater 
part of the time was spent in bed or on the lounge, 
although she generally joined us at lunch or dinner. 
With her husband, her cousin, and Mr. Sattay in the 
house, there was everything to make her last days 
here as comfortable as her condition would allow, 
and in the merry social converse, in which she eagerly 
joined, she would have forgotten that she was an 
invalid, had it not been for the frequent and periodical 
taking of medicine. 

"At no time did any of the * gloom' of the sick- 
room attend her. Everything was done to make those 
precious days as bright and cheerful as possible. It 
was too hard to believe that all the efforts of her 
physicians would be in vain, and we tried to shut our 
eyes to the heart-rending truth." 

When the packing was all done, of the eleven 
trunks, eight contained nothing but souvenirs, and 
the remaining three held a goodly proportion of 
the same. Into one of these had gone the silk 
quilt which Anandabai's loving heart had made 
a last effort to put together. Dr. Joshee's skill 


in sewing was something unusual among her coun- 
trywomen, and was perhaps due to the Mission 
school in Bombay. The Hindu dress requires few 
stitches, and embroidery and ornamental work are 
usually done by men. 

Dr. Joshee had dreaded this final packing, but 
when the hour for it came, all she could do was to 
lie still and look on. 

"The moming of Oct. 9th, 1886, dawned bright 
and clear. The carriage was ordered half an hour in 
advance of the train," Mrs. Carpenter goes on to say, 
**that Anandabai might see once more every home 
that had been open to her, and take a last look at 
that she had called her own. The bright sun and the 
soft air were not too bright or soft for this parting 
hour. The motion of the cars made her uncom- 
fortable, and she leaned on my shoulder for support 
until we reached the carriage in New York. This 
took us to the 'Etruria.* She was very weak, but 
sat firmly in her seat as we drove, looking almost 
as bright as the flowers she carried. She was glad to 
lie down as soon as we reached the steamer. Not 
for a moment did she give way. A struggle between 
her weak body and her strong soul had been going on 
for days." 

The party that accompanied Dr. Joshee to the 
steamer consisted only of Mrs. Carpenter, her 


husband, and two children, the Pundita Rama- 
bai, and Mr. Sattay, the Hindu friend who had 
been with them all during the last weeks. To 
the last moment these friends, forgetting their 
grief, occupied themselves with the doctor, stew- 
ardess, and others, in arrangements for the inva- 
lid's comfort. The purser and steward had been 
instructed by the agent of the line to show Dr. 
Joshee special favor in regard to diet, and the 
physician in charge promised watchful care. 

During the month that preceded Anandabai's 
departure, I heard from Gopal twice, but he wrote 
about articles that were to be sent to her from 
Washington, and not one serious word was writ- 
ten about Anandabai's health. In July she had 
written from Delaware County, "I am coughing 
with each turn of my pen." In August she 
adds : — 

" I have not as much strength as when I left Dela- 
ware County. I do not feel able to go to Chicago, and 
after rest and care shall go home. Do not worry, for 
there is no need at all." 

From Philadelphia she once wrote : — 

" Even the least breeze seems to abuse me. JN'o one 
in the house realizes the trouble as my Doctor and I 
do, and no one need. 


"My headaclie, which is reflex, is perfectly intol- 
erable. It is aggravated by every attempt to think." 

When I connect the allusions to her health in 
my own letters with the fuller extracts furnished 
from Mrs. Carpenter's, I feel sure that Anandabai 
was not deceived as to her own condition. 

Tor the details of her journey we are obliged to 
depend on her husband's letters. 

He writes first from the steamer "Etruria/' 
Oct. 11th, two days after they had set sail. The 
weather had been rough, and Dr. Joshee had not 
left her bed. The Doctor and all the officers were 
very attentive. On the 13th she had a very bad 
night, and required the constant attendance of her 
husband and the physician. Gopal writes that he 
*' prayed to God for mercy." 

In the morning she was lifted from her bed 
that it might be aired, but could not bear the 
sofa even for a moment. An opiate was given. 

A severe storm followed, and when they reached 
Liverpool on the morning of the 17th Anandabai 
was almost hopeless, and Gopal was much ex- 
hausted by the unusual labors of a nurse, — 
labors from which, oddly enough if we look at 
it from a religious point of view, every high caste 
male Hindu is taught to shrink. 

Our next information comes through a very 


painful letter published in " The Index " of Dec. 
23d, 1886, and which must have been written, 
one would hope, when Gopal's mind was sore 

In this letter he writes : — 

" We are as you know vegetarians. On board the 
* Etruria ' especial attention was paid to our food. The 
chief steward sent us any quantity of grapes, apples, 
pears, and peaches, beside vegetable soups, baked 
apples, and tomatoes, ice-creams and puddings. On 
that steamer we were respected. 

" We came from New York to Liverpool well cared 
for and looked after. The Doctor on board called 
twice a day. The steward and stewardess were always 
in attendance whenever the bell rang. 

" While Dr. Joshee was in America, and up to the 
time of her landing in England, she never knew what 
kind of animosity was fostered by the English between 
the black and white races. She had lived among 
white people for nearly four years respectfully treated 
as a lady." 

And yet how bitterly Gopal had upbraided her 
friends in America for not showing sufficient con- 
sideration for her race and habits ! 

They had sailed from New York Oct. 9th, and 
reached London Oct. 18th, if I can trust Mr. 
Joshee's figures. 


The temptation to quote the whole of this letter 
is strong, for in no other way could I so fully 
justify to my reader what I have felt it necessary 
to indicate of Mr. Joshee's temper and excitable 
nature ; but I forbear. 

Thomas Cook & Son, who booked Mr. and Mrs. 
Joshee from New York to Bombay, had secured 
by telegraph a berth in the British Steamer 
"Hergoda." On their arrival in London on the 
18th, their baggage was immediately transferred 
at a heavy expense to this steamer. Gopal then 
went to the office of Cook & Co. to ascertain 
exactly when the steamer would sail. He wished 
to leave the country as soon as possible, being sure, 
he says, that if he did not he should be " impris- 
oned for life" or " committed to the gallows" ! ! ! 
Cook & Co. could not furnish the information 
he wanted, and he was sent to the office of the 
British India Steamship Co. Here he was refused 
a ticket on the ground that the passage money 
was not yet paid, and they would not grant it 
now that they knew the passenger would be a 
Hindu lady. " I was all wrath and indignation," 
Mr. Joshee goes on, " I burst, as is my wont, into 
bitter exclamations. I abused the English right 
and left, and said that their houses in India should 
be blown up, and every insult retaliated by blood- 


shed." Such words as these, and the far worse 
words that followed, could hardly have availed to 
secure the accommodation that he wanted. It is 
impossible to understand this story as Gopal tells 
it. Hindu passengers and European passengers 
of every rank are constantly making the passage 
from India to England and back in the same 
vessel, and there is nothing in the public opinion 
of England to sustain the outrage here described. 

Mr. Joshee does not forget to tell us that in 
this sharp trial Anandabai remained " firm as a 
rock." When he returned to the hotel, he met 
there two ladies, who, unable to believe the story, 
went to the office of Cook & Co. The next day, 
the 20th of October, Mr. Joshee called on the 
husband of one of these ladies, and on finding 
what was necessary to enable the travellers to take 
the outgoing P. & 0. steamer which was to sail 
on the 21st, Mr. Pattison handed Mr. Joshee " a 
check for eighty or ninety pounds." Is it not 
a little singular that Gopal does not remember 
which? In speaking of Mrs. Pattison Mr. Joshee 
says, " Her words at parting were more consoling 
and redeeming than all the dollars Mrs. Joshee 
received as presents from her American friends in 
pomp." These words are printed and I cannot 
pass them by. Not only did Dr. Joshee receive 


many gifts from the ladies of Philadelphia, but 
many benefactions were offered to her husband 
for her sake, and with a delicacy which hid from 
every " left hand " what the " right hand " did. 

From this moment, if we are to believe Mr. 
Joshee, everything went ill with the travellers un- 
til they reached Bombay. Dr. Joshee was rudely 
treated by the steward and the subordinates on 
board the "Peshawur." Mr. Joshee had made 
one serious mistake at the outset, in booking him- 
self as the servant of his wife. He gives no rea- 
son for this, save lack of funds and "curiosity." 
Why there should have been any " lack of funds " 
it is diificult to understand. The Dewan of Kol- 
hapur was to pay all the expenses of the new 
superintendent of the Albert Edward wards, and 
the large amount of money known to have passed 
into Mr. Joshee's hands, makes it impossible to 
understand why he could not pay his own pas- 
sage. His wife was far too ill to be left alone at 
night or to be without an attendant of her own 
sex. If by " curiosity " is meant a desire to see 
how much irritation and ill-will he could excite 
by his own violence and perversity, we cannot 
deny that his experiment succeeded. I take com- 
fort in believing that this letter never met Anan- 
dabai's eyes. I remember the sweet tones of her 


voice as she said soon after her arrival in this 
country, " I know there are many good husbands 
in the United States. I see that they make their 
wives happy. But among them all there is not 
one so good as my husband." If this letter had 
come into her hands, she would have seen in it 
many statements that she would never have au- 
thorized. I am glad that this pang was not added 
to all the rest. 

Indirectly we heard that Anandabai took cold 
in a severe storm in the Bay of Biscay, and 
reached Gibraltar in a very critical state. From 
Gibraltar Mr. Joshee goes on : — 

" The day we left London Dr. Joshee felt bright, 
and was able to go on deck without assistance. I, 
being only her native servant, had to stay away till 
sent for. The second day she sat there reading. Now 
she is again confined to her bed, as ill as she was 
when she last reached Eoselle. Now I am with her 
day and night, and she will soon be better. The sea is 
calm ; it troubles us far less than the people." 

In this letter came a few lines from Anandabai 
to Mrs. Carpenter, the last she ever wrote. 

" I am stronger," she says, " cough better, throat 
worse. I shall improve when I am able to eat. 
There has not been an hour since I left New York 



when I have not missed your precious self. I am 
writing in bed, and see my Doctor twice a day." 

At Malta they paused a little while to take in 
water, fruit, and vegetables. 

Mr. Joshee complains of the diet on board this 
-steamer; but neither ice nor fruit is sufficiently 
cheap in London for the company to supply the 
P. & 0. steamers as they do those of the Cu- 
nard line, and for that reason travellers usually 
supply their own delicacies. On the third of 
November they entered the Suez Canal. Twelve 
days ought to take them to Bombay. Anandabai 
grew hopeful again, and mentioned, her husband 
says, " a thousand and one things that she would 
like to eat." The three days in the Eed Sea 
were intensely hot, and at a great risk Anandabai's 
warmest wraps were removed. Her cough was 
severe, and she seems to have been wholly sus- 
tained by stimulants. 

Mr. Joshee alludes in a letter from Aden to 
various annoyances arising from their color, and 
adds that an unknown friend on board, who had 
heard of their trouble in London, sent to offer 
them money if they needed it. " Patient of hard- 
ships," Anandabai reached Bombay. The letters 
which detailed the landing never reached us, but 
it could not have been later than the 17th of 


November. She was received with distinction 
and extraordinary marks of regard. Those who 
expected to see her excommunicated and abused, 
saw on the contrary the eyes of grave men filKng 
with tears as they gazed upon her wasted form, 
and heard the strong voices of priests and pundits 
echoing her praises. 

She lingered for some time in Bombay or that 
neighborhood to take the advice of distinguished 
European physicians. 

It must always be remembered to Mr. Joshee's 
honour, that during this long voyage, in the last 
half of which Anandabai was certainly fatally ill, 
he waited upon his wife with devoted tender- 
ness, and she preferred his care to that of every 
other. The prospect of a life at his side had faded, 
and ceased to perplex her. She was glad to rest 
in a love already tested. For many things she 
must have suffered ; but against the customs of 
his country-people and in spite of the injunctions 
of his creed, he waited upon her steadily, perform- 
ing the duties of a servant, and seeming to forget 
the privileges of his " sex and caste." 

It may be said that he did this from necessity, 
and with an interested intention to save a valu- 
able life, but I think he did it from pure affec- 
tion. He had done it once before, to my knowl- 


edge, when neither necessity nor hope of gain 
could possibly have influenced him, and when 
it exposed him, as it did now, to the harshest 
contumely, to the most bitter scorn. 

At Bombay everything was against our un- 
happy traveller. Eor two days the pleasant 
thought that she was at home roused her to a 
factitious cheerfulness. 

Her mother, younger sister, brother, and grand- 
mother came from various directions to meet her. 
They could not tempt her with the food she had 
longed for. The friends with whom they stayed 
were devoted, but their habits were not those of 
the Mahrattas. They removed from house to 
house. Their first resting-place was too damp. 
At the next they were received for a short time 
only ; and when we remember with what prompt- 
ness Dr. Joshee's practical sense would have con- 
quered all these difficulties had she been well and 
acting for any one else, we realize how ill she 
must have been when she lay there quietly, " noth- 
ing asking, nothing doubting." 

She had not however given up all hope, for 
she desired that subscriptions should be made to 
several medical journals in America, the money 
to be forwarded after she reached Kolhapur. She 
was impatient to reach Poonah, but at first her 


physicians would not allow it. This depressed 
her, and her husband saw her wasting to a shad- 
ow, and became more and more uncertain and 

He says he has no time to write. The interest 
in Dr. Joshee made her a national centre. " All 
India is in travail for her." 

Physicians were often changed. At last one 
was found who probably saw the case to be hope- 
less, and consented to her going to Poonah on the 
9th of December. 

On the 16th Gopal writes : — 

" We are now in the place where Dr. Joshee was 
born. As we came up into the hills, she brightened 
up. At first her cough was better. We sent for 
one native doctor in whom we have full confidence, 
and whose remedies were very gentle, but collapse 

The people of Poonah spent hours in praying 
for her recovery, but they crowded the house and 
made it difficult to take proper care of her. 

''Some come from curiosity, some from sympathy 
and affection," writes Gopal. " Those who scarcely ever 
leave their houses come to see her, the good among 
the orthodox and the superstitious, forgetting that 
we have been to America. Dr. Joshee's illness is 
the concern of all. Siva is our God of Death. To 


appease him, water is gently trickled over his head 
for hours daily. The people are doing it now. Every 
day the Brahmins put ashes on Dr. Joshee's fore- 
head, and she touches a bit with her mouth. Col- 
umns are printed in the newspapers about her condi- 
tion. / write to you but do you reply to her, that 
she may feel as if the letter were her own. A word 
from you is a tonic." 

On February 10th he can only repeat the same 
sad story. They moved once or twice in Poonah, 
and finally went to the old house of Anandabai's 
great-uncle, where she was born. He was now 
very aged, and seems to have had a sort of super- 
stitious feeling that the hand which brought her 
into the world could hold her back from death. 

It was about the middle of December that they 
reached Poonah, where the grandmother who had 
been her companion when she left Kalyan to 
follow the fortunes of Gopal Vinayak, the mother 
whose disapprobation of her career had perhaps 
led her to send bitter letters to the Missionaries, 
were ready to receive her. Here the daily papers 
issued bulletins of her health ; here the Brahmo, 
the Hindu, and the Christian came, regardless of 
their superstitions, forgetful of their caste, to pray 
for her who had laid down her life for their 


Gopal was now able to leave her with her 
mother while he went himself to offer sacrifices 
to the " gods," and to her " guardian planets," to 
avert their anger and her death. He performed 
the penance and paid the fees necessary to rein- 
state Anandabai in her caste, and all the while 
life was failing. 

On the 20th of February it was evident that 
the end was near ; but whatever had befallen her 
poor body, Anandabai's spirit was serene and 
sweet. When she found it impossible to eat, 
Gopal rebuked her mother as if she had not pre- 
pared the food with sufficient care. " The food is 
good," said the poor patient, " it is I who am 
out of sorts ! " She seems to have had occasional 
convulsions, and to have endured much. 

Gopal says of her : — 

" She suppressed her groans that others might not 
suffer. When conscious she was grave, gentle, medi- 
tative, and oh ! so brave and thoughtful. She never 
showed the slightest irritability. She was very strict 
in everything relating to our faith. Do you beheve 
met It was so. Her maid-servant must not step 
on the carpet at her bedside, and her water bottles 
were removed if a European touched them. When 
I remonstrated against this as a folly in one who had 
spent years in America, she pleaded that her grand- 


mother, sister, and mother had such an abhorrence of 
these things, that she must consider them. Properly- 
speaking, we were outcasts, but no one reminded us 
of it. 

" A few days ago the * Pacification of the Waters ' 
was performed for her. Brahmins were seated at 
dinner, and her old uncle sent for me that I might 
sprinkle water on the banana leaves on which the 
food was served. Did they consider me as an outcast 
when they asked me to do this ^ Even the reformers 
are astonished at the manner in which we have been 
treated by the most orthodox Hindus. We have con- 
quered every enemy but Death." 

The Mahratta papers had warned the physicians 
not to allow their professional jealousy to inter- 
fere with " duty to a patient in whom all India 
felt a national concern." I copy from the Dnyana 
Chaksu of March 2nd, 1887, the following account, 
translated by the Pundita Eamabai : — 

*' Although Anandabai was so young, her persever- 
ance, undaunted courage, and devotion to her husband 
were unparalleled. It will be long before we again see 
a woman like her. The education which she had 
received had greatly heightened her nature and en- 
nobled her mind. Although she suffered more than 
words can express, from her mortal disease, which was 
consumption, not a word of complaint or impatience 


ever escaped her lips. After months of dreadful suf- 
fering, she was so reduced that no one could look on 
her without pain ; yet, wonderful to tell, Anandabai 
thought it her present duty to suffer silently and 

It was at midnight on the 26th of February, 
1887, that the final call came. The previous night 
had been one of great suffering ; the whole family 
had been up all night. 

Through it all Anandabai's face was bright and 
she spoke cheerful words to those about her. At 
ten o'clock, worn out by anxiety and fatigue, Gopal 
administered some medicine and went to his own 
bed. At midnight a strong convulsion came on. 
Anandabai called loudly, but before her mother 
could lift her to her bosom, the gentle, faithful 
soul had fled. 

Her last audible words were, " I have done all 
that I could." 

" The family then bathed the body and decked it 
with bright garments and ornaments, according to our 
Hindu custom," her husband goes on to say. " There 
was no time to spread the sad news throughout the 
city, but all who had heard of it, followed her remains 
to the cremation ground, on the following Sunday, thus 
showing their respectful affection. Some of us had 
feared that the priests might object to cremating the 



body with the sacred fire, according to the Hindu 
rites, but our fears were groundless. When I offered 
sacrifices to avert her death, they had gladly officiated, 
showing a generous liberality." 

Anandabai needed neither vows nor sacrifices 
nor crematory rites to bring her soul to the foot 
of " The Great White Throne," but she had more 
than once desired that everything should be done, 
after her death, to gratify and appease those who 
still recognized their force. 

" It will do me no harm," she said once, when 
speaking to me of such matters. 

After the body was placed upon the funeral 
pile, Mr. V. M. Eanade made an oration in 
Dr. Joshee's honor, and the cremation was then 

" But she is dead ! that sweet intellectual soul, 
that large-brained self-forgetful womanly creature — 
dead at the early age of twenty-one years and eleven 
months — dead on the threshold of the work for which 
she was so well equipped ! " 

There are those of us who loving her tenderly 
cannot think without pain of the weary journey, 
undertaken without the needed nurse and com- 
panion ; but turning our eyes to the country 
which she loved, and which, because she loved it. 


she left, turning to the countrywomen whom she 
died to save, we feel that her death, in sorrow, 
disappointment, and bodily anguish, will in God's 
own way accomplish still more than the life for 
which we prayed. 





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