Thursday, January 24, 2008

The truth about "Lord Macaulay's Address To The British Parliament - February 2, 1835"

As a quote with the above title has been doing the rounds and came to my attention, I though it worth checking with the only authority on the period who I know personally, Dr. Vishal Mangalwadi. I summarise his response below:

The text is a complete forgery. Macaulay was in India from 1834-38. There is no way he could have even addressed the Parliament in 1835. The forger has not read even one of Macaulay's speeches. However, there is some similarity with one quote from the "Macaulay Minute" of 1835, PROVIDED one twists that quote (as many do!) to misrepresent what Macaulay was saying. A number of people keep using that quote without actually reading the "Minute".

BTW, the whole of the "Minute" is reprinted in Dr Vishal Mangalwadi's book "India: the Grand Experiment" - if you would care to read the "Minute". Sphere: Related Content


Alpha0 said...

Thank you prabhu for direction.

Chander Pal Singh said...

I entirely agree with you. I have checked it myself. Besides there was no session of British parliament on 2nd February 1935. Use of such sources without cross checking throw bad light on those who use them. Unfortunately this forged quote has been used by a distinguished scholar like J.S.Rajput in a recently publised book:Transcending Conflicts Indian and Eastern Way, 2008 on page 344.

Ritwick's said...

Read the minute here:

Deepak said...

Well Prabhu, the fact that Macaulay was not in India until 1834, which is by the way true, is silly as an argument against his making a speech in the Parliament, because the Parliament in reference is not Indian Parliament, but the British Parliament. As a matter of fact, Macaulay gave a speech on India Bill on 10th July 1833, which he thought was "the best speech, by general agreement, and in my own opinion, that I ever made in my life" [his first-ever speech in the British Parliament came as an address on 5th April 1830 on the question of "Removal of Jewish Disabilities"]. And he did make a speech on Feb. 2, 1835, now famously known as Minutes on Education.

However, all these facts do not detract from the fact that the quote doing rounds here is NOT Macaulay's.

Hope this helps.

Deepak V.

psychologist@gujarat said...

lol... this happens everytime. I dont understand why are we all so curios abt cutting each others' words. No one is focus on the glory of India and rebuilding it. It reminds me of the difference between a dog and a Lion. If you throw a stone at a dog, he smells and licks it and if you throw stone at a Lion, He will look at the direction from where it came. Be Lions guys. I dont know and i dont care if macualey said it or not. I am more concerned about the glory of India. Dont fight among each other trying to prove who is wrong and who is right, that too for a person who comes from a nation of divide and rule.. instead, get together, work and live for India and its glory.

Anonymous said...

But the truth MUST prevail always .... we all know that there were beggars and very poor in India long before the British arrived and that the masses were uneducated. For hundred of years there has been the very rich and the abjectly poor. Let us be truthful and honest in this matter even before the Mughals arrived in India and Sikander's troops before that.

aroup chatterjee said...

I went to the British Library to check the Hansard. The quote is a complete fake. macaulay was in calcutta in Feb 1835 many thousand miles from the British parliament. and moreover the british parliament was not even sitting on 2 Feb 1835