On the bicentenary of the publication of Raja Rammohun Roy's Precepts of Jesus, R. S. Sugirtharajah situates Roy's compilation of the moral teachings of Jesus in its social, cultural and political context and analyses the hermeneutical issues it generated. In doing so, he documents the often acrimonious exegetical exchanges between Roy and the missionaries over the standing and status of the Bible; their often differing hermeneutical suppositions and strategies; their contradictory consturals of Jesus; and disputes about translations. Sugirtharajah addresses issues such as the place of the Precepts among earlier Gospel Harmonies, Roy's use of the Improved Version, a highly contentious Unitarian Bible, and his motives for translating his own Hindu texts. Sugirtharajah also demonstrates how Roy's work was a precursor to de-mythologization which the West took up later, and how Roy's identification of Jesus as an Asiatic, and his idea of a moral union between Father and Son, were routinely reused by later Indian writers. An additional feature is a critical look at Thomas Jefferson's The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth, which appeared in the same year and which had a similar interpretative aim and aspiration. This volume also includes Roy's Precepts in full.