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28 September 1847 – Father Charles-Eugène Mathieu to Father Jean-Claude Colin, Wallis

Based on the document sent, APM OW 208 Mathieu

Translated by Mary Williamson, October 2011.

Small sheet of paper, measuring 184 x 150 mm, folded to form four pages, three of which are written on, the fourth having only the address.

To the Reverend Father • Superior General of the • Society of Mary • Lyon.

My Reverend Father,
I have the honour of sending you this small box, which contains some copies of the Uvean catechism, along with my French translation of it. It also contains some letters for the two councils for the Propagation of the Faith and another for the Cardinal prefect for Propaganda. The Bishop asks if you would be so kind as to send the Cardinal a copy of the catechism and the translation.
If you think it suitable, my Reverend Father, you could have a tidier copy of this translation made with any corrections to the French and the spelling. I made it in haste and mistakes may have slipped in. This copy would be the one that would be sent on to Rome. My manuscript could stay at the novitiate, where it would be useful to the missionaries who were leaving and who would be able, in this way, to learn the language in advance.
If the Rev. Fr Mériais would be kind enough to relinquish my copy of the grammar and dictionary that I lent him, I will send that to you too. If not, you could acquire this grammar from Captain Marceau, who took a copy of it. – I have requested the Bishop many times to make a complete work of the language of these islands, which he understands better than anyone. He certainly intends to do it, but his activities have prevented it up till now. This is what has delayed the despatch of his first work up till this time.
Please, Rev. Father, pray for me often, as I have great need of it. I remain always
Your very devoted and respectful child,
Mathieu, missionary.
Uvea, 28th September 1847
Post script. I am including the dictionary and the manuscript of the Bishop’s grammar.[1]


  1. the P.S. ( I am including ----Bishop’s grammar) seems to have been crossed out with a large X.

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