BOUCHET, Jean Venant

BOUCHET, Jean Venant. Fontenay-le-Comte (Vendée) 1655 — 1732. Father. S.J. French Missionary in Thailand and India. First in Thailand, where he arrived with the French embassy in 1688. When the Jesuits were forced to leave in 1688 he entered Madurai mission. Following Roberto de Nobili’s methods lived as a sannyāsin. In 1704-10 in Rome defending the Jesuit missionary tactics. In 1710-32 Supérior of the Carnatic Mission. He knew well literary Tamil, perhaps also Sanskrit, and used often textual sources.

Publications: Several long letters in Lettres édifiantes et curieuses 1-15, often dealing with Indian religion; religious texts in Tamil.

Relation des erreurs qui se trouvent dans la religion des gentils malabars de la Coste Coromandelle. Extensive extracts publ. as “Dissertation historique sur les Dieux des Indiens orientaux” in Picart’s Cérémonies et coutumes religieuses de tous les peuples du monde. 1:2. Amsterdam 1723, 95-225. Complete text ed. by W. Caland in Twee oude Fransche verhandelingen over het hindoeisme. V.K.N.A.W. N.R. 22:3. Amsterdam 1923.

Sources: Sweetman 2003, 127, 135-141

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