XAVIER, Jerónimo (J. Javier, Hieronymus Xaverius, Jerónimo de Ezpeleta y Goñi). Buro, Diocese of Pamplona, Navarra 1549 — Goa 27.6.1617. S.J. Spanish Missionary in India. Grand-nephew of —> Francisco X, son of Miguel de Ezpeleta. Joined S.J. in Alcalá in 1568, studied there and in Toledo. In 1571 came to India. Worked eight years as Rector of Colleges in Bassein and Cochin, then two years as Superior in Goa and one year as Master of novices and from 1584 Profession. In 1594 he was sent, together woth —> Bento de Góis and Emmanuel Pinheiro to the Mughal Court in Lahore and worked 23 years there, alternatingly in favour and in prison, trying to convert Akbar and Jahangis in long religious discussions. In court he associated with Persian scholars and learned well the language. In 1615 he returned to Goa and became Rector of St.Paul College, but died soon as Archbishop elect of Cranganore.
Publications: Wrote Christian works in Persian, some then published with Latin translation by L. de Dieu (1590–1642) in Leiden.
– Uncertain is the authorship (JX or Pinheiro) of the manuscript edited by J. Flores, The Mughal “Padshah”: A Jesuit Treatise on Emperor Jahangir’s Court and Household. 12+182 p. Leiden 2016.
– H. Hosten, “Some Letters of Fr. JX, SJ, to his Family (1593-1612)”, JASB N.S. 23, 1927, 131-136.
Sources: H. Beveridge, “Father JX”, JASB 57:1, 1888, 33-39; Father Felix, “Jesuit Mission in Lahore”, JPHS 5, 1916 (1918), 55–99 (esp. p. 75); Wikipedia; portrait in JRAS-MalBr 9, 1931, pl. xxix.
On his Persian works see Beveridge (above); A. Camps, “Persian works of JX, a Jesuit at the Mughal Court”, Camps, Studies in Asian Mission History, 1959-1998. Leiden 2000, 33-45; *H. Hosten, “Fr. JX’s Persian Lives of the Apostles”, JASB N.S. 19, 1914, 65-84.
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