HC Deb 10 April 1845 vol 79 cc393-453
Mr. Christie

rose to bring forward the Motion of which he had given notice— That an humble Address be presented to Her Majesty, praying that She will be graciously pleased to appoint a Commission to inquire into and report upon all matters relating to the Privileges, Revenues, Trusts, and to the State of Education, Learning, and Religion in the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge, and the Colleges of these Universities. He would make no apology for calling the attention of the House to this subject. He knew the importance and difficulties of the question, and the many great interests and delicate considerations which it involved; he knew that a repugnance was felt by many Members to making the Universities the subject of Parliamentary discussion; and he was perfectly sensible under what great disadvantages he necessarily laboured in endeavouring to encounter that repugnance, and to grapple with the difficulties of so large and complicated a question. But he felt confident that no hon. Member whom he addressed, in an assembly principally composed of sons of one or other of the Universities, however much that hon. Member might differ from his views, or however much he might regret that this Motion was brought forward, would have just fault to find with the language and the spirit in which he introduced the Motion. The question being so large and so complicated, he should have to trouble the House with many details, to which, he feared, no exciting interest belonged, and he, therefore, had peculiar occasion earnestly and respectfully to ask for the indulgence of the House. He had lately moved for some Returns of Payments from the Public Revenue to the Universities. He had not done this with any intention of complaining of the amount of these payments. They were indeed a very small portion of the benefits which Oxford and Cambridge owed to the Crown and the Legislature; but he would take leave to say generally that there was no object to which the liberality of the State, of judiciously exercised, could be more worthily applied than to the maintenance of institutions designed for the encouragement of the higher branches of learning, and for the education of those governing classes of the community on the character and degree of whose education the national civilization mainly depends. Not, then, by way of complaint, but in order to make the facts known, with a view to the proper understanding of the case, he would enumerate the principal advantages which the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge now derive from the State. First, Parliament annually voted the sum of 2,006l. to thirteen professors in the two Universities, who, under the prevailing system, had some of them no class at all, and hardly one of whom had twenty pupils. Next, there was a charge on the land revenue of the Crown of 300l. for three professors in each University; and Henry VIII.'s endowments of three more Regius Professors in each University; with 100l. a year to the two Lord Almoner's professors of Arabic, making 640l. per annum more. There were eight canonries, three benefices, and a mastership of an hospital annexed to professorships in the Universities; four of the canonries had lately been annexed: two canonries of Christ Church to two new Divinity Professorships in Oxford, and two in Ely, to the Regius Professorship of Greek and Hebrew in Cambridge. These canonries and several benefices were annexed to headships of colleges in Oxford and Cambridge; so, it must be admitted, the colleges came in for some benefits from the Legislature. Besides these advantages, 500l. a year was paid to each University by the Board of Stamps and Taxes; and the history of this payment was a very singular illustration of the power which the Universities had always had of protecting themselves in Parliament. The Universities of old enjoyed by grant from the Crown a monopoly of printing almanacs; this they leased for 1,000l. a year to the Stationers' Company. The monopoly was pronounced illegal by the Court of Common Pleas in 1775; and a few years after an Act was passed laving an additional duty on sheet almanacs, and charging 1,000l. a year to the Universities on the proceeds of that duty. The almanac duty had since been repealed; but the Universities still received 1,000l. a year out of the general proceeds of the stamp duties. Now no one would grudge 1,000l. a year to Oxford and Cambridge; but there should be some service done for it, and known to be done. Again, the Universities shared with the King's printer in England the monopoly of printing Bibles, Testaments, Prayer-books, and Psalm-books; and according to a Parliamentary return, printed in 1815, the average value of Bibles, Testaments, Prayer-books, and Psalm-books printed at Cambridge in each of the previous years was 21,293l.; and at Oxford, 30,417l.; and calculating the profit derived at 25 per cent., which he understood was a moderate profit, Cambridge got upwards of 5,000l., and Oxford upwards of 7,000l. a year by the Bible monopoly. The monopoly, moreover, was exercised under the further advantage, that the Universities were exempted from the duty on paper, and this privilege extended to the paper used for printing books in the Latin and Greek and Oriental languages. A return presented that morning showed that during the last ten years 37,345l. of paper duty had been remitted to Oxford, being an average of 3,734l. a year; and 22,384l. to Cambridge, being an average of 2,234l. a year. Now, the hon. Baronet opposite (Sir R. H. Inglis) proposed to set against these items the amount received by the Public Revenue for stamps on matriculations and degrees in the Universities, which, on an average of ten years, was about 2,731l. for Oxford, and about 3,243l. for Cambridge. But he must deny that that could fairly be treated as a set-off. These payments did not come out of the University chests; they were made by each individual as he took his degree; and moreover, out of all such money paid to the Stamps and Taxes, the Universities were allowed 1½ per cent. back, which allowance was not returned to the persons who had paid the amount, but retained by the Universities, so that instead of a loss to the Universities, these payments were a gain. The Universities had other privileges: they were each entitled to a copy of every published book, which was often a heavy tax on authors, as there was plenty of evidence to show in the Reports of the Copyright Committees. After a long and hard battle, the noble Lord the Member for Hertford (Lord Mahon) secured copyright to authors for a period of forty-two years; whereas all copyrights which were given or bequeathed to the Universities, before publication of the books, belonged to them for ever. The copyright of Lord Clarendon's works, for instance, a very valuable property, was held by Oxford in perpetuity; and it was to be remarked, the recent cheap editions of Lord Clarendon's Life and History, showed, contrary to the arguments of some hon. Gentlemen, that cheapness was compatible with perpetual copyright. Again, the Universities and all their colleges were specially exempted from the Mortmain Statute—an exemption which had not been granted to the University of London and the colleges in connexion with it; though to these, being in their infancy, and having to struggle against many prejudices and difficulties, every additional privilege that could be conferred would be valuable. The two great Universities, further, had most important privileges in connexion with the three great professions. In medicine, they had the power of conferring a right of practice in all parts of England, except London and a circle of seven miles round. In law, their degrees of Doctor of Laws exclusively conferred the right of practising in the Ecclesiastical and Admiralty Courts. In the Church, a degree at Oxford or Cambridge was, till lately, when the new University of Durham was allowed to share the privilege, necessary to ordination. Let him state a fact or two as to the Church patronage, enjoyed by the Universities. The University and Colleges of Cambridge had the patronage of 305 livings, of the annual net value, according to their calendar, of 113,300l. a year. The University and Colleges of Oxford had the patronage of 447 livings. The Oxford calendar was not so communicative as the Cambridge as to the value of the livings; but taking the average value of the Cambridge livings, viz. 387l., this would give the Oxford benefices the annual net value of 173,000l. As to the right of Parliament to interfere, he would refer them to the preamble of a Commission issued for the purpose of inquiry into other Universities by the right hon. Baronet, now at the head of the Government; then, namely, in 1826, at the head of the Home Department. That Commission—a Commission issued in 1826, and again in 1830, to inquire into the state of the Scotch Universities, and signed by the right hon. Baronet—contained in its preamble these words:— Our Sovereign Lord, considering how necessary it is that Universities and Colleges should be provided with good laws, statutes, and ordinances for the regular government of their societies, for regulating the granting of degrees to their members, for the management of their revenues, for the exaction of fees, and for eschewing disorders which may happen through the defect of such laws, statutes, and ordinances; and being informed that certain irregularities, disputes, and deficiencies, have occurred in the Universities of Scotland, calculated to impair the utility of these establishments; and, considering also, that it is His Majesty's undoubted right and prerogative to name visitors and commissioners to inquire into such irregularities, disputes, and deficiencies, and to remedy the same. All he (Mr. Christie) asked the right hon. Baronet to do now, was to apply these principles to the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge. If it were the undoubted right of the State to see that the Universities and colleges were provided with good statutes, laws, and ordinances, the time had certainly arrived when the House should consider what were the statutes, laws, and ordinances of the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge. It would not be denied, at all events, that these statutes, laws, and ordinances were antiquated, nor would it be denied that many of them were not observed. Wherever convenience counselled their observance, they were observed; wherever convenience pointed out the in-advisability of observing them, they were taken no sort of notice of. He (Mr. Christie) would wish to make his statements, with reference to the principal features of the present position of the Universities, not on his own authority, but on the authority of persons whose academical experience and position entitled them to respectful attention on the subject. He would first quote the declared opinion of Dr. Peacock, Dean of Ely, whom the right hon. Gentleman opposite (Mr. Goulburn) would at once admit to be a high authority, a gentleman thoroughly experienced in college affairs, having been for many years connected with Trinity College, Cambridge, as tutor, and now a professor of the University, as well as Dean of Ely. He said:— They (the statutes of the Universities of Cambridge, dated 1570) will be found to refer to habits of life and to a condition of society which have long since disappeared; they prescribe a course of studies for students of all ages, which the experience of a later age has rejected as unsuited for their preparation for the business of life; they recognise a system of physical and metaphysical philosophy, which the progress of knowledge or the changes of opinion have pronounced to be false or inadequate; they enforce with peculiar strictness and earnestness a most laborious series of scholastic exercises, which, however well calculated to stimulate the exertions and faculties of those who partook in them, have become useless or inoperative, in consequence of the universal neglect and even contempt (whether just or unjust) with which they have long been regarded; and they inculcate and require submission to a system of discipline, which the refinements of modern life would reject as impracticable from its puerile character, or its extreme and oppressive severity. In another place, Dr. Peacock said,— They were destined to experience the fate which has attended all systems of statutes or laws which have attempted, by being themselves unchangeable, to fix immutably the changeable character of the wants and habits of mankind. The Elizabethan statutes provided most cautiously against the introduction of these amendments in the academical constitution and administration, which might adapt them to the changes which the lessons of experience, or the advancement of knowledge, might render necessary or expedient; and we consequently find, that in latter ages, they either tended to check or to retard the progress of improvement in the system of academical education, or assumed, when their provisions were no longer maintainable, that unreal, yet embarrassing, character which belongs to laws which, though enforced by the most solemn obligations, are either impossible to be obeyed, or have long been habitually and systematically neglected. The obligations which the Dean of Ely herein referred to, were oaths taken on matriculating, since changed into affirmations, to obey the statutes. He (Mr. Christie) would ask the hon. Baronet opposite, whether what he had here read would not apply fully to Oxford? The professors in the Universities were obliged by statute to give certain lectures, and students were required to attend them; but some of those professors gave no lectures at all, and others gave lectures which were attended by no more than a dozen, or at the most twenty students; whilst all the instruction in the Universities was given by college and private tutors, who were unknown to the statutes. He would quote in support of his statement the testimony of a most distinguished son of the University of Oxford—Sir W. Hamilton—now professor of logic in the University of Edinburgh:— Through the suspension of the University, and the usurpation of its functions and privileges by the collegial bodies, there has arisen the second of two systems, diametrically opposite to each other. The one in which the University was paramount is ancient and statu- tory; the other in which the colleges have the ascendant, is recent and illegal. In the former, all was subservient to public utility, and the interests of science; in the latter, all is sacrificed to private monopoly, and to the convenience of the teacher. The former amplified the means of education in accommodation to the mighty end which a University proposes; the latter limits the end which the University attempts to the capacity of the petty instruments which the intrusive system employs. The one afforded education in all the faculties; the other professes to furnish only elementary tuition in the lowest. * * * * In the superseded system, the degrees in all the faculties were solemn testimonials that the graduate had accomplished a regular course of study in the public schools of the University, and approved his competence by exercise and examination; and on these degrees, only as such testimonials, and solely for the public good, were there bestowed by the Civil Legislature great and exclusive privileges in the Church, in the Courts of Law, and in the practice of medicine. In the superseding system, degrees in all the faculties, except the lowest department of the lowest, certify neither a course of academical study, nor any ascertained proficiency in the graduate; and these now nominal distinctions retain their privileges to the public detriment, and for the benefit only of those by whom they have been deprived of their significance. Such is the general contrast of the two systems, which we must now exhibit in detail. That was an account of the system of education which was in operation at Oxford; and the same description would apply with equal force to Cambridge. It was a description written by a man well acquainted with the subject, and one most highly distinguished when at Oxford for his abilities and acquirements. In Oxford, education was restricted to elementary subjects; and this restriction had a most disadvantageous effect. The Rev. Baron Powell, the Jacksonian Professor of Geometry, who published a pamphlet in 1832, entitled, "The Present State and Prospects of Mathematical and Physical Studies in Oxford," in which he says of the candidates who came before him in two years when he was examiner, that— Out of the whole number of candidates, though a certain portion of them had 'got up' the four books of Euclid, not more than two or three could add vulgar fractions, or tell the cause of day and night, or the principles of a pump. Professor Powell had but six or seven pupils, and sometimes none at all, attending his course of lectures; and it could not be said that the paucity in the number of his pupils arose from the income petency of the professor; for no man had a higher character for learning than Professor Powell. An attempt was made in 1839, by enjoining attendance at the lectures, to remedy that growing evil, but it was unsuccessful. Dr. Daubeny then published an Address to the Members of Convocation, stating the diminution of the numbers of his class of chemistry:— From 1822 to 1830, the average number of pupils was thirty-one; of whom twenty-eight were for the University. From 1830 to 1838, the average number was sixteen; of whom fourteen were from the University. Such a result has fully justified the forebodings of those who contended from the first that an exclusive encouragement held out to one particular class of studies could not but act as a positive check to those which had been passed over; and that, in proportion as the system itself came into operation, would the sinister influence which it was calculated to exert upon the cultivation of those other branches of knowledge, be more distinctly perceived; nor could anything have placed in a stronger light the force of these local obstacles than the fact that the period of such an increasing indifference to scientific studies in Oxford, should have exactly coincided with that of their greatest exclusion elsewhere. I conceive myself warranted, at least, in concluding, that whatever differences of opinion may exist amongst us as to the degree of countenance which modern science ought to receive in Oxford, all would admit the principle that our present system re-requires modification, if it can be shown to be equally unfavourable to every branch of human knowledge lying beyond the pale of those studies which the Examination Statute requires. We all, I am folly persuaded, are anxious to retain the name and character of our University, under which Oxford has heretofore thriven; and, doubtless, it was upon such an understanding, that we felt ourselves authorized in accepting, amongst other donations, the valuable bequest lately made over to us for the exclusive encouragement of modern languages and literature. That was the language of Dr. Daubeny in 1839; and in 1845 he said;— It is notorious that the existing professorships, even when they relate to the popular branches of modern literature or science, are fast dwindling into sinecures, owing to the diminished interest in such pursuits, which causes the natural consequence of the exclusive importance attached to classical studies within this University. It might be expected that any augmentation in the number of such professors and teachers should be accompanied, whenever it was practicable, with measures calculated to induce the students to avail themselves more frequently of the in- creased means of instruction henceforward to be afforded to them. Such measures, it is presumed, must be framed with a view, either of rendering an attendance on certain of the public courses of lectures delivered in the University compulsory, or with that of holding out some inducements, in the shape of honours or emoluments, to the voluntary prosecution of some at least out of the number of those various branches of knowledge to which these lectures relate. One effect of Dr. Daubeny's publication in 1839 was to call forth similar statements from other professors of physical science. Dr. Kidd, the Professor of Anatomy, stated that from the year 1819 to 1828 there was an annual average attendance of twenty-three pupils at his lectures, but that average had greatly declined from the latter-mentioned period; and from 1829 to 1839 the annual average was no more than seventeen. The diminution was now more remarkable than ever; and at present the average of pupils attending the lectures on anatomy was ten. The attendance at the lectures on experimental philosophy diminished in an equal ratio from 1828; whilst Dr. Buckland, the professor of geology and mineralogy, stated that for seven years before 1832, he had in his class an average of fifty pupils, and that for the seven years after, the average was thirty; in mineralogy the average attendance for the seven years before 1832, was thirty, and in the seven years after, the average was fifteen. Dr. Buckland in remarking on that decrease says,— As this decrease has been nearly coincident with the increased accommodation for lectures, and the exhibitions of the collections, transferred in 1833 from a crowded room in the Ashmolean Museum to more spacious apartments in the Clarendon, and as it has happened also during a period when the study of geology has been advancing with unexampled rapidity throughout England, and in all parts of the world, it seems reasonable to refer the diminution of attendance which I have experienced, in common with all the other scientific professors in this university, to some internal cause in the system of education and of public examination. He had not confined his investigation to Oxford alone—he had extended his inquiries to Cambridge, and he would state to the House what the result of those inquiries had been concerning professors, all of whom were included in the annual Votes of the House of Commons. The professor of anatomy had five or six pupils attending his class. The professor of chemistry had last year seven pupils attending his lectures. The professor of mineralogy, and the professor of Arabic, had no class at all. The professor of modern history had a respectable attendance, which was accounted for by the attractiveness of the subject, and Professor Smyth's great reputation. The professor of botany had twenty-five pupils, an attendance on those lectures being required for a degree in medicine; whilst the Jacksonian professor of natural philosophy had only two pupils, the lectures of this professor being on the arts and manufactures of the kingdom, and the professor himself being a man of very great ability and zeal, who went to great expense in providing suitable apparatus. It was worthy of the attention of hon. Members, that although certificates of attendance on the lectures of the professors of chemistry and anatomy were required for medical degrees, yet those professors could not get more than half a dozen pupils to attend their lectures. Degrees were conferred by Oxford and Cambridge which gave an exclusive right to practise in the Ecclesiastical and Admiralty courts, and yet, though there was in Oxford a professorship of civil law, richly endowed, there were no lectures and no examinations. At Cambridge the professor of civil law did lecture; but the degree of doctor of laws might be obtained without attendance at the lectures, the attendance being required only for bachelors of civil law. The Universities had also the power of conferring the right to practise medicine; and he would ask the right hon. Baronet the Secretary for the Home Department, who had recently taken such an interest in the improvement of the law repecting the medical profession, if Oxford and Cambridge, with all these privileges, were or could be good medical schools? In Oxford, they did not even profess to give medical education. The professor of medicine did not lecture; all that they required at that University being a certificate of attendance at the lectures of a school of medicine not in the University. In Cambridge it was better, for there the medical professors lectured, and candidates for degrees were required to produce certificates that they had attended those lectures. The results of such a system were shown by a return which was laid on the Table of the House of Commons that morning; and it did not exhibit Oxford and Cambridge in a light by any means favourable, as compared with the new University of London. From that return it appeared that within the last ten years the number admitted to the degree of doctor of medicine at Oxford was twenty-two, and the number admitted as bachelors of medicine was twenty-nine. In Cambridge, within the last ten years, the number admitted to the degree of doctor of medicine was fifty-one, and to that of bachelor of medicine forty-eight; whilst in six years the University of London had given 176 degrees of bachelor of medicine, and thirty-three were admitted as doctors of medicine, fourteen doctors of medicine having been admitted last year. Notwithstanding the greater number that were admitted by the London University, it was not to be represented in the new Council of Health, whilst Oxford and Cambridge were. He should now advert to that portion of the subject which more immediately concerned the theological studies at the Universities. When the admission of Dissenters is recommended, it is sometimes said that the Universities are theological seminaries. The present Bishop of St. David's (Dr. Thirwall) declared this assertion to be no more nor less than a fiction, and that there was nothing less studied, in Cambridge at least, than theology. The present Bishop of Durham (who was then Bishop of Chichester) declared in a charge delivered in the Archdeaconry of Lewes, that the admission of Dissenters might even promote the study of theology, for it would probably lead to separate theological instruction, which would be more efficient. It was stated by Dr. Pusey, in 1833, with respect to the theological studies at the University of Oxford, that "one fortnight comprised the beginning and the end of all the public instruction which any candidate for Holy Orders was required to attend previous to entering upon his profession." He (Mr. Christie) could not mention the name of Dr. Pusey in connexion with such a subject, without stating that before this was said by Dr. Pusey, and before his name became a symbol of a peculiar theology, or he himself the object of attack and ridicule with many who, whilst they opposed his views, forgot what was due to sincerity and virtue and learning, he had shown the sincerity of his zeal in the improvement of theological education by a munificent foundation of Hebrew scholarships. The Crown had founded two new professorships at Oxford—a new theological examination had been instituted, but it was not compulsory. The majority of the Convocation thought that the examination ought to be voluntary. It had now been in operation a year and a half, and what were the numbers of the candidates who offered themselves for examination during that year and a half? During the first half year there was one candidate; during the next half year there was no candidate; and in the third half year there were two candidates; so that it did not appear there was a more encouraging account to be given of the theological education at Oxford at present than when Dr. Pusey wrote in 1833. From the divinity studies of the Universities, the transition is easy to a subject which it is impossible now not to notice in considering the state of the Universities. It will be supposed that I refer to that important theological movement which has of late years fixed the attention of all Christendom upon Oxford—which has roused that University from a long sleep to plunge her into all the bitterness of fierce theological warfare, the effects of which have been felt in Cambridge also, but which, more especially in Oxford, now places in the strongest possible light before the world the futility and the mischief of her forced subscription to the Articles of the Church. You will say that, if Oxford and Cambridge are not theological seminaries, they are exclusively Church of England places of education. They are; but is it just—nay, look at Puseyism in Oxford, and tell me whether, even for your own purposes, it is politic—that they should be? What is the result of all your endeavours to unite the Universities and the Church in an indissoluble theological alliance, and "crib, cabin, and confine" the theology of the Universities within the limits of the Thirty-nine Articles? Why that, under the very greatest disadvantages, after having been long kept down by the heavy incubus of Oxford and Cambridge conservatism, learning has at last proclaimed her independence — burst your theological fetters; ay, and dragged the Church after the Universities into a latitude of theological speculation which well beseems a place of learning, but is utterly subversive of the foundations of your Church; and the Church of England is at this moment shaken to its centre. The history of Oxford, during the last nine years, is indeed a striking commentary on your vaunted union of the Universities and the Church of England. In 1836, the Crown, the constitutional head of the Church, exercising its power in the usual constitutional mode, appointed Dr. Hampden Regius Professor of Divinity. Oxford is immediately up in arms against him as a heretic: one head of a college, since a bishop (Dr. Gilbert), goes so far as to announce that he will give no testimonials for Orders to any of his undergraduates who has attended Dr. Hampden's lectures; but the bishops, on the other hand, say that they will ordain no one who has not attended them, and the head is obliged to give in. But that is not all. Dr. Pusey rakes up an old statute, which has long become obsolete, about a board of heresy, and succeeds in getting a new statute passed, reorganizing the board, so as to exclude the new Regius Professor of Divinity. A few years pass, and this resuscitated and reconstituted board of heresy turns round upon its reviver, sits in judgment on a sermon preached by Dr. Pusey, and pronounces that sermon heretical. Well, then, now we have, not one heretic only, but two heretics, and both clergymen and dignitaries of the Church of England—canons of Christ Church. The University prohibits Dr. Pusey from preaching for two years before the University — that is, in the church of which he is a canon (by the way, has he received during these two years the income of his canonry?)—but there has been nothing to prevent the Oxford heretic from preaching in any church but his own, if the bishop of the diocese permitted; and it is matter of notoriety that the proscribed of Oxford has had free range in the happy diocese of Exeter. Last year there was a great M'Mullen controversy in Oxford. Now that is a very singular case. The Regius Professor of Divinity—the heretical Dr. Hampden—pronounced one of Mr. M'Mullen's exercises, for the degree of Bachelor of Divinity, heretical; and the grace for Mr. M'Mullen's degree was, in consequence, vetoed by the Vice-Chancellor. Mr. M'Mullen's object in proceeding to the Divinity degree was, that he might continue to hold his fellowship. There is a singular provision in the statutes of this college; that if a fellow is prevented from obtaining the B.D. degree, by the interposition of an officer of the University, as Mr. M'Mullen was, he shall not vacate his fellowship; so that the heterodox Mr. M'Mullen is still a fellow of one of your orthodox colleges; and, what is more, is still a clergyman of the Church of England. This year the great performer has been Mr. Ward, who has been degraded from his degree; but he would still have been a fellow of Balliol if it had not so happened that he preached celibacy, as he subscribed the Articles, in a non-natural sense, and as such might have borne a part in the education of the University; and he still retains his gown. Now, there is an united Church in an united University! Does the hon. Baronet opposite, the great opponent of Popery, know how many conversions there have been to Rome within the last few years in Oxford? I have in my hand a list of twenty-three converts since 1841, almost all members of the University, with all of whom the Oxford Tracts have been the bridge to Rome. Now, I have no quarrel with Puseyism in a University (in the Church it is a different matter): in a place of learning, Puseyite views, and all other theological views, should be allowed to be ventilated. I would refuse no one a degree, and I would degrade no one from a degree, on account of theological opinions; but I ask that the same indulgence should be given in Oxford to every other "ism" which has so long been given to Puseyism. You cannot crush Puseyism by making martyrs of its votaries; make it innocuous by depriving it of its singularity. The effects of Puseyism on Oxford, in its present state of professed restriction to members of the Church of England, are, indeed, such as may fill with serious apprehension friends of the University on both sides of the House; and would that I could receive from some of those gentlemen who joined in the great lay address against Puseyism—to which they received from the Chancellor and Vice-Chancellor so satisfactory an answer, telling them that every one signed the Thirty-nine Articles in Oxford — their assistance to abate, by getting rid of the Thirty-nine Articles, the evil which owes to the Thirty-nine Articles its strength, and so arrest the progress of this most angry and lamentable discord, which, if you wish Oxford to legislate for herself, places, as we have had many recent proofs, a dead-lock on legislation in Oxford—which has for some years past imported the odium theologicum alike into every the most trivial proceeding, and the performance of every the most solemn duty in the University—which sounds the tocsin of Puseyism on every election in the University, from the vice-chancellorship down to a scholarship in a college—which, not long ago, invading a province that even in Oxford had ever before been kept sacred from the intrusion of intolerance, spoilt with rude clamour an honorary compliment to the distinguished Representative of the United States in this country, because, forsooth, in his past religious creed some orthodox Puseyite had discovered a flaw—which now makes undergraduates, on their first arrival in Oxford, the objects, and in too many cases the early victims, of an ever-watchful proselytizing zeal—and which threatens to absorb every member and every function of the University in the vortex of theological controversy, and to blight for ever, with its all-withering influence, in Oxford, the peaceful happiness of those years of college education which our memories and imaginations combine to paint to us in colours so fresh and fair. There is no practice in the Universities which will contest the pre-eminence of absurdity with the privileges and distinctions granted to wealth and rank. In Cambridge, all plebeians have to wait seven years for the Master of Arts degree; but noblemen and noblemen's sons, and all persons related to the Sovereign by consanguinity or affinity, get the degree in little more than two years, as if there were a noble road to learning. One would imagine these are the very persons who could best afford a longer time for college education; they are certainly those whose careful education is most an object of national solicitude; for they are our future hereditary legislators, and those whose influence in the country brings them straight from college into Parliament. In all the colleges there are distinctions of dress, of table, of seat in chapel, founded on rank and wealth. I am less familiar with the practice of Oxford; but the word tuft-hunter, which Oxford has given to our language, proclaims the sign of nobility at Oxford, and speaks for its results. In Cambridge, it is a very complicated system: there is the nobleman, who is either a Peer in his own right or a Peer's eldest son; the hat-fellow-commoner, a hat being worn in Cambridge by all sons of noblemen and eldest sons of baronets; and fellow-commoners, who wear caps, having nothing but wealth to stand upon. The nobleman wears ordinarily a flowing black silk gown, which, on great days, is exchanged for one of purple and gold: Pictâ pandit spectacula caudâ. And this fine gown, having been worn perhaps half a dozen times during his undergraduateship, and having cost sixty or seventy guineas, is, on his leaving, a perquisite of the college tutor. The noble undergraduate takes precedence, on all occasions, of the head of the college. Now, if there was any place in which such distinctions should be less encouraged than another; where it might be thought that such fictitious distinctions would be, indeed, carefully excluded; and the "learned pate" not forced "to duck to the golden fool," that place is a university. He had not stated the worst. In his time, the fellow-commoners of Christ's College were only required to go to chapel on Sunday, while all others were obliged to attend every day; and in Queen's College a notice was actually posted up, that fellow-commoners were only expected to attend at chapel four times in the week, while all others must attend every day. He would ask the right hon. Member for Cambridge if he approved of this reversion of chapels to rank, and making payments an alternative of prayers? In 1837, a promise was made in the House of Lords by the two Chancellors of the Universities, in consequence of Lord Radnor's disclosures, that the attention of the colleges should be directed to the revision of their statutes. The Chancellors of the two Universities did endeavour to prevail upon the heads of colleges to revise their statutes; and the consequence was, that at Cambridge five colleges revised their statutes, but in Oxford no revision had taken place. Originally, the fellowships and scholarships were founded for the benefit of the poor, and of those who meant to devote themselves principally to theological pursuits; but those appointments, which were originally destined for the poorer classes, were now held by the rich; and so far from the intentions of the founders being carried out with respect to theological study, those injunctions were observed only in certain forms. In Trinity College, Oxford, there was a provision that after a certain number of years the fellows should either go into holy orders or resign their fellowships. There was also a provision that when they had complied with this condition, they should, after a certain additional number of years, take the degree of Doctor of Divinity; but this latter provision was systematically neglected. A fellow of Trinity College disputed the justice of his being called upon either to take orders or to resign, and appealed to the Bishop of Winchester, who refused his application. This fellow did resign; and his resignation of his fellowship was followed by an appointment which caused a vacancy in a scholarship. There was a curious provision made by the founder, Sir Thomas Pope, who it appeared had an objection to aristocracy, that no fellowship or scholarship should be held by a younger member of any noble family. And yet this scholarship was filled up by Mr. Hobart, the nephew and heir presumptive of the Earl of Buckinghamshire. In the case of an election at Exeter College, the candidates were required to produce testimonials, and to undergo an examination of four days, at the end of which time, however, to the astonishment of all, the rector and fellows announced the election to have fallen upon another person who was not a candidate, who had produced no testimonials, undergone no examination, and had not even been present. Mr. Row, one of the disappointed candidates, determined to appeal to the principal of the college, the Bishop of Exeter; but he was not able to procure a copy of the statutes of the college. There was only one copy of the statutes of Exeter College in existence; it was kept sacred in the library, and even the visitor was obliged respectfully to ask permission to see it. The Bishop of Exeter having received the appeal, called upon the head of the college for a copy of the statutes; but they sent him only extracts, and requested him to return them. The bishop said that the extracts furnished did not give him sufficient materials upon which to form a judgment on the case. He did, however, at length pronounce judgment; and he (Mr. Christie) would ask whether, while the Bishop of Exeter abstained in his own way from giving an opinion, he did not condemn the college. The bishop, after stating that the appellant had not raised the point as to age or standing, proceeded thus,— Whether there be anything in the history of this election which can justify a suspicion that it was not made in full observance of the solemn injunction of the founder, I have not a right, and therefore have no inclination to inquire. The invitation to candidates by public advertisement, the requisition of certain formularies of testimonial, the appointment and actual institution of an examination of the candidates for four days, followed by the election of one who was not a candidate, who did not produce the required testimonials, and who was not examined, nor even present, and this without any declaration on the part of the rector and fellows that the candidates who had presented themselves were in their judgment either insufficient in learning, or defective in morals, or exceeding in opulence—points on which the appellant has not unreasonably dwelt—are, however, considerations wholly foreign from my jurisdiction, and upon them I abstain from expressing, or seeking to imply, any opinion whatsoever. Mr. Row, the candidate thus rejected, could not be said to be insufficient in learning, or defective in morals, for he had produced satisfactory testimonials on these points, nor to be exceeding in opulence, for he was at that time in narrow circumstances, and was now a diligent curate, in Wiltshire, depending entirely upon the income of his curacy. Mr. Row, the unsuccessful candidate, was a second-class man; the chosen gentleman, a third-class man. The only reason for the election of the individual who was chosen was, that he happened to advocate Puseyite sentiments, which exist in great strength among the fellows of Exeter College. And there happened on the same day, in the same college, another election on another foundation, in which the same process of testimonials and examination was gone through, and the election was notwithstanding declared to be in favour of a gentleman who could not get testimonials, having been rusticated for an offence contrà bonos mores. This gentleman bore an honoured Puseyite name. He wished now to say a word on a part of this subject which had often been brought forward separately, and in which a great deal of interest was felt by the public. When two years ago he had the honour of submitting a Motion for the admission of Dissenters to the Universities, he mentioned an instance of a Jew who had kept terms in Cambridge, though he could not get a degree, and advocated the admission of Jews as well as Christian Dissenters; and he remembered that the hon. Baronet opposite (Sir R. H. Inglis) thought the Jew a capital joke. It was at any rate no joking matter now. In the year 1845, no less a person than the Lord Chancellor of a Government which had, if not the hon. Baronet's confidence, his support, had held up as an example to us the Universities of Prussia, where Jews are admitted upon equal terms. The Lord Chancellor need not have gone abroad for an example. There was in this country a college, closely connected by its ceremonies of daily worship and in other ways with the Church of England, of which the visitor was the Bishop of London, almost all of whose professors were of design clergymen of the Church of England—which, though it was of comparatively recent foundation, and its field of operations limited, could point with pride to brilliant names in divinity and philosophy, which had been associated with it—which had educated Members of that House—of which, and of whose professors, he himself having once been a member, could never speak or think but with gratitude and affection: he referred to the East India College at Haileybury, where, of late years Jews had been educated with no violence offered to their consciences; where they had been among the most distinguished of the students; and from whence, through the wise liberality of the East India Directors, by which Oxford and Cambridge would do well to take example, Jews had gone forth with no disabling or degrading distinction to impede their path, to enter on that great career of usefulness, responsibility, and fame, which lies open to the East India civilian. A Jew might thus in course of time become a Member of the Supreme Council of India; he might for a time be the acting Governor General of India; and the hon. Baronet opposite meant to make a battle about a beggarly Bill for allowing Jews to be aldermen in this country, and treated their admission to the national Universities as a joke. He would venture, on this part of the subject, to appeal respectfully to the right hon. Baronet at the head of the Government. Will you (said the hon. Gentleman), to whom all the great recent triumphs of religious liberty are owing, and who are emphatically the Minister of religious toleration—who have emancipated the Catholics—who are beginning to emancipate the Jews—who in defiance of your party have set before yourself the great task of laying the bigotry which has long been lord of Irish misrule—will you refuse inquiry (for it is only inquiry I ask) into the means of getting rid of a religious disability the most indefensible in character—a disability in respect of education? I will even appeal on this subject to the hon. Baronet himself, the Member for the University of Oxford. He must see that this question is now in a very different position from what it was when it was last agitated in this House ten years ago—when Puseyism was a name unknown—when Tract No. 90 was yet unwritten — when no one had ventured to whisper even, much less to commit to irrevocable print, that he subscribed the Articles in a non-natural sense: and his strong sense of justice must recoil from a system which harbours Roman Catholic conformity, and proscribes Protestant Dissenters—which complacently sees college rooms fitted up with confessionals, and shops in Oxford filled with rosaries and crucifixes to slake the Roman Catholic thirst of the Protestant youth of Oxford; but has not yet proposed any restitution of her old monastic cloisters, fit even for the education of a Roman Catholic priesthood, so that you are compelled to propose additional endowments for Maynooth—which has no open relations with Rome, but is in close alliance with the Pope of Newmania at Littlemore—which admits Mr. Newman and Mr. Oakeley, and excludes Dr. Wiseman and Dr. Lingard. I pass from this subject, briefly to consider the Universities in one aspect, in which I have not yet separately noticed them, as places destined to the promotion of higher learning and literature. I have considered them fully as places for the education of youth. I have considered them in relation to the Church; how have they fulfilled, and how are they fulfilling, their duties, as stewards of the nation's literary and philosophical renown? There was a time, long ago, when all the learning of the nation was in the Universities, and at that time all the learning of the Universities was in Aristotle. But since that time have the Universities led the way in any great intellectual impulse which marks the history of literature and philosophy in this country? How long after Bacon's great work had been given to the world did the Aristotelian philosophy linger in the schools of Oxford and Cambridge? In what terms of reproach and ridicule does Bacon, and, after Bacon, Hobbes, speak of the Universities? A generation later than Hobbes, we find no great symptom of appreciation of philosophy; but a very strong proof of abject political servility in Oxford, when Locke, at the time enjoying the sympathy and homage of the philosophers of Holland, is deprived, for his political opinions, of his studentship in Christ-church, in eager obedience to the arbitrary mandate of a bigot king. Do you connect in any way with either Oxford or Cambridge the brilliancy of what is called the Augustan age of our literature? After the accession of the House of Hanover, Oxford and Cambridge for more than half a century exhausted their energies in Jacobite and Hanoverian quarrels; while in those Universities of Scotland which you have thought it just and expedient to visit, an illustrious school of metaphysics, was developed, and the science of political economy arose in them almost full grown at its birth, and they gave the impulse to a number of historical writings, which are still, and will never cease to be, the glory of British literature. Again, is there any period in the history of either Oxford or Cambridge, since the Revolution, to be compared with that brilliant epoch in the history of the University of Edinburgh, when her body of professors shone before the world with the accumulated lustre of the names of Leslie, and Playfair, and Gregory, and Dugald Stewart, and the fame of her teachers drew from far and wide a great concourse of students, among whom, in spite of the fashion of the English Universities, mingled more than one hope of the aristocracy of England, and of whom an unexampled number rose afterwards to eminence in science and literature, in the various professions, in the Senate, and in Council? Some, indeed, having died before their time, have already in biography become a study and example to the world; and when in the vigour with which, by professors and students alike, all branches of knowledge were pursued, the world was startled with that celebrated literary undertaking of the young men then congregated in Edinburgh, which has influenced the literature and government of every country of the civilized world. Let us look around now, and among the men eminent among us at this day in higher learning or literature, how many, or rather few, shall we find in actual connexion, or indeed connected at all, with the Universities! Do we go to Oxford or Cambridge to look for distinguished metaphysicians, statists, political economists, or historians? If one were asked to name the persons most eminent among us at this day as speculative philosophers, I believe there would be no dispute whatever as to two names, which I shall take the liberty of mentioning, being among the first: Mr. Bailey, of Sheffield, who, not amid academic groves and cloisters, but in the busy din of a large manufacturing city, and himself engaged in pursuits of business, has written upon subjects of almost every branch of speculative philosophy, and enriched every subject on which he has written; and Mr. John Mill, a public servant from an early age of the Court of East India Directors, the author of "The System of Logic," whose philosophical reputation is, as it were, an inheritance which, in his hands, has received ample addition by the son of the profound and distinguished historian of India, who again owed none of his intellectual culture to an English University. The Universities and their colleges possess libraries rich in manuscripts, illustrating modern history. Has any historical work of value proceeded during the last three centuries from either Oxford or Cambridge? While, among those who in our own day have elucidated with the most research the history of our own country, is a Roman Catholic divine, Dr. Lingard, excluded by his religion from adorning either University with his genius and learning. The Protestant Dissenters boast in science and literature the names of Dr. Faraday, Dr. Pye Smith, Dr. Vaughan, Dr. Wardlaw, Mr. Howitt, Mr. Fox, Mr. Conder, and many others whom I might mention. Are these men unworthy of admission to our Universities? Would not the Universities rather derive strength and honour from the accession of their accomplishments and fame? I do then ask the House, not hoping for it, but feeling that it should be granted, for an address to Her Majesty for a Commission to inquire into the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge. Since the commencement of Her reign, Her Majesty has visited the University of Cambridge. Great care was taken to let her have an opportunity of seeing some of the ancient forms and ceremonies which the University tenaciously preserves, while the substance of her statutes is disregarded. I remember the newspapers at the time described Her Majesty as showing some very unequivocal, but certainly not unnatural, symptoms of fatigue, with some of the long unmeaning ceremonies which she was doomed to witness. It is impossible, Sir, that she, the supreme visitor of Oxford and Cambridge, may then have conceived a desire to render the powers with which the law invests her available for infusing new life and vigour into the Universities, and so widening the circle of knowledge which they teach and cultivate, that England need no longer blush for a comparison of her chief seats of learning and education with the far more scantily endowed Universities of Germany, of some of which she may have heard much? But this at least, I trust, may not altogether idly and presumptuously be imagined, that as she walked amid the many monuments which met her eye on every side of Roman Catholic munificence—above all, as she prayed within that gogeous, venerable pile, the peerless glory of Cambridge, which a Roman Catholic predecessor on her throne consecrated in a so-called dark age to the future moral welfare of England—that there did flash across the royal breast a hope that Her reign might see the last of the injustice which excludes Roman Catholics from all share in Roman Catholic endowments, and the last of the intolerance which now narrows to one sect, and spoils and desecrates, the large, munificence of olden time.

Mr. Ewart,

in seconding the Motion, said, if it were asked for what reason this inquiry was sought, the reply might be given in very few words. The ground upon which the Motion was made was, that the Universities had limited themselves within bounds far narrower than those contemplated by their founders. He thought that even his hon. Friend the Member for the University of Oxford must acknowledge, when he looked at the inscriptions of former times found in the various colleges, that a far more extensive system of learning once prevailed than that which existed at present. It was the object of the founders of those institutions to extend their sphere of usefulness as much as possible; while it seemed to be that of their successors to limit the benefits which they were adapted to diffuse. How did it happen that one of our Universities confined itself almost exclusively to classics, while the other contented itself with classics and mathematics? The originators of these seats of learning contemplated a far wider range; they did not omit education in the arts and sciences, so far as they were known in their own day; and no less than seven arts and sciences would be found to have constituted the curriculum through which degrees had to be obtained. Now, he could not help remarking, in reference to the present state of the Universities, that some of the most profound works in classics and history now used in the colleges were translations from the German; being, in fact, the composition of erudite German professors. There must be some defect in a system which led to such a result. The great object of all education, after giving a certain amount of elementary instruction, should be to develope the latent faculties of the mind; and unless this object were kept in view, all attempts at education would prove ineffectual. That object was far more traceable in the conduct of the founders of these institutions than in the narrow path pursued in the Universities in modern times. They now adhered to what was called the tutorial system of education, while the plan originally pursued was the professorial. Many eminent persons had written against the change. Mr. Whewell had deprecated the narrow and circumscribed character of the existing system, as one which was not adapted to prepare students for the scenes in which they were likely to be engaged. He knew not what men were to be found in our Universities who might be compared with the eminent writers of Germany or of France. Had they such men as Eichorn or Muller? Had they any authors who would bear comparison with Gujzot, Michelet, and many other modern historians of France? Nor was it only the intellectual system of education of which there was reason to complain. The distinctions of rank observed at the Universities were highly objectionable. The practice of giving a nobleman a different dress from that of the poorer student was not known in the Universities of any other country in the world. It was, in his opinion, not only hurtful to the feelings of a large class of students, but dishonourable to the University itself. He must say, that when he saw a student, simply because he happened to be a sizar, excluded from a particular sphere of society, the spectacle appeared to him extremely revolting. His hon. Friend had alluded to the subject of religious education. He did not think that the cause of religion could be maintained or promoted by perseverance in administering all those tests of theology which were prescribed for students in the Universities; tests which were so numerous and burdensome that it seemed to be the object of the students first to subscribe, and afterwards, as rapidly as possible, to forget them. Such, then, were the reasons which induced him to support the Motion before the House. He trusted that no long period would elapse before the Universities would be liberated from the existing obstructions to their prosperity and that of the country at large. By opening the colleges to persons who belonged not to the Established Church, they would throw a flood of light into the institutions themselves. Was it not a disgrace to those Universities that any native of this country should be excluded from benefits which, as being intended originally for all who professed the Roman Catholic religion, which was then the religion of the whole country, were, in fact, destined for the behoof of all classes of the community? Although his hon. Friend might not succeed in the present Session, yet he trusted that he would have laid the foundation for future success, and, as other reforms had been carried which at first it seemed difficult to obtain, so he trusted they would at length see a reform in the Universities. He did not despair of seeing those who would on that occasion vote against this Motion, in some future year supporting a similar Motion for opening the Universities without distinction of religious sect, and of finding the call made by the country in reference to this matter generally responded to within the walls of that House.

Sir R. Inglis

said, the hon. Member for Weymouth had promised at the commencement of his speech that he would endeavour to avoid any expressions which might be considered disrespectful to the institutions which were the subject of his Motion, or painful to those who were interested in their welfare. That promise the hon. Member had kept most faithfully. Whilst he differed from him as to many of his facts, and all his conclusions, he did not recollect in the course of his able speech a single expression which was inconsistent with the promise made at its commencement. He should not have risen thus early to address the House on this subject, but, as he could not conceal from himself that the hon. Member had, in many parts of his speech, addressed him personally, he would not shrink from the task of at once endeavouring to meet his arguments. Now, he did not deny the proposition which the hon. Member had assumed as the basis of his Motion, namely, that the Crown had a right to issue a Commission to investigate the state, the privileges, the rights, and the duties of the two Universities; but he respectfully submitted to the House that, notwithstanding all the talent and research which he had combined in his speech, the hon. Member had laid no foundation whatever for the Motion with which he had concluded. The hon. Member began by speaking of the great wealth, the vast privileges, and the pecuniary value of the livings enjoyed by the Universities; and this he followed up by stating the amount which the Universities received, first, in the shape of drawback for paper, and next in that of a donation of 500l. from the Consolidated Fund. These were facts already known to the hon. Member. Was it necessary for his purpose that the machinery of a Royal Commission should be employed to ascer- tain the number of livings in the possession of the University? Why, the papers were already in his hand from which the required information might be obtained. Again, as to the sums received from what was called the public. It was, by the bye, a curious circumstance that the great promoters of education should be the first to deprecate the very moderate encouragement of learning which was given to the two Universities. He believed there was no country in Europe which had contributed so little to the support—he would not, say of learning, at the Universities, but of any object connected with the intellectual progress of the nation. As a state and nation they had done nothing. It appeared that there was given to the Universities7l. 10s.—he begged the hon. Member's pardon for understating the amount—it was, in fact,7l. 19s. for a preacher; 11l. 6s. 2d. for a professor of divinity; and 35l. 3s. for a professor of law. The whole amount, in fact, of the items thus divided between the two Universities was 300l., of which 151l. 15s. 2d. was given to Oxford, and 148l. 4s. 10d. to Cambridge. It was not, therefore, upon the size of the grants which had been made to the Universities that the hon. Gentleman could found any claim to the exercise of the visitatorial power of the Crown with respect to the Universities; but, even if the amount were ten times as large as he had stated, it was not the amount, but the use or abuse of that amount, which could alone justify the exercise of the visitatorial power. Had then any abuse been suggested? Not a single abuse with respect to the appropriation of the funds had been stated by the hon. Member; and he could tell the hon. Member that it was by the amount of the drawback of the duty on the paper employed in the University presses that it had been found practicable to reduce the price of the most important of all books. Though he should contend that, even for the circulation of books in classical literature, or general science, it was very desirable that the aid of the nation should be granted to the Universities, the sum so granted in respect to classical literature or general science was small indeed as compared with the amount of drawback on the paper employed in the printing of the Bible. The largest amount ever remitted as drawback to the Universities was in one year, ten years ago, 8,600l. At that time the whole sum granted for drawback on books in Greek, Latin, Oriental, and the northern languages, was only 220l. 6s. The fact was, that the drawback allowed for some years had been gradually diminishing; and at present it was so small that it could hardly be grudged even by the most fastidious of economists. The average for the last three years did not amount to more than 2,300l. a year. The hon. Member himself had not overstated the pecuniary aid which they received; but even taking his amount, how small was it in comparison with the wealth of the country—how small compared with the encouragement given to literature in other countries far less rich than our own! But there were other considerations which had provoked the hon. Member for Weymouth to draw the attention of the House to the condition of the Universities. It was that pre-eminence which he had justly assigned to the Universities, the character of which the hon. Gentleman desired, he (Sir R. Inglis) would not say to diminish, but practically to render less valuable by the introduction of the measures which he contemplated as the necessary result of the issue of the Commission now proposed. The hon. Member had laid, he repeated, no ground of inquiry in respect to any abuse, either as to the funds received by the Universities from the State, or the funds inherited from the founders. But it was said, and his hon. Friend (Mr. Ewart) had repeated the assertion, that in the present generation the Universities had not been the means of increasing the great lights of this country, either in respect to arts, science, or literature. Now if his hon. Friend contended that it was necessary the works should be written with in the limits of the two Universities, even then he believed he could show him examples of that sort. But the effect of the Universities was not confined to that which was produced within the mere walls. It was not necessary, for instance, that Mr. Hallam should have written his works actually within the walls of Christ Church. It was sufficient that he had received within those walls the education which had qualified him to write those works. And he defied the hon. Member, with all his research, to produce in the history of England in the last three centuries any number of distinguished men who were unconnected with either University. He spoke fearlessly upon that subject; that among the great men who had enlightened and adorned the history of their country, there would scarcely be found, in respect to theo- logy, in respect to science, any distinguished name which was not connected with one or other of the Universities. He would admit, however, on the other hand, that if the possession of degrees in either University were essential to the establishment of any man's fair claims to professional enjoyment, that argument would cut two ways. And though it might be said "You have proved, indeed, that the distinguished men of England have been connected with the Universities; that would prove too much, for it would prove there was a monopoly." Yet that was not the case. There had not been a monopoly. The hon. Member had, however, talked of the invidious advantages possessed by the Universities with respect to law, medicine, and theology. With respect to law, he need not remind him that of the last six Lord Chancellors, three had not been compelled to attain to their honours by passing through that course of education which either University afforded. He was quite willing to admit that here also his arguments might be turned against himself, and he might be asked, "Then, what good did the Universities produce?" He answered, that they had produced the most eminent men, without however excluding those who did not possess either the pecuniary means or the religious principles which might qualify them to pass through either University. They did give to every profession that distinction which a highly cultivated education, on the part of the individual, was most likely to produce; whilst, on the other hand, they did not exclude from professional or public distinction those who were not so qualified by education in the Universities. Now, as to the profession of medicine. The hon. Member said, there were very few physicians who had passed from either University to the great walks of the medical profession in the metropolis. Be it so; but the fact was, that those few were amongst the most distinguished whom the country had produced. He would take a late example; that of Sir Henry Halford. Would any one assert that the classical attainments which that distinguished individual drew from his University education did not tend to raise the character of his profession as well as his own? He could point to other men, at this moment in the metropolis, of the highest walk in the profession, whose progress was not impeded, but rather encouraged by their classical attainments. Again, he admitted that there were but few of the most eminent physicians sent from the two Universities into the metropolis; but that did not prove that the reputation enjoyed by those few was not reflected upon the other members of the profession. The hon. Member had also alluded to the law. As to the highest office in the law, he had been already answered. With respect to other offices, or to practice in the Common Law and Chancery Courts, they were open to any man, of any religion or none, or any education or none, always excepting their professional acquirements. But with respect to the civil law, there was a distinction in reference to that, which the hon. Gentleman ought to have stated. It was this—that the courts in which they practised required a university education from them, because in those courts the interests of the Church were materially, if not exclusively, involved. Therefore it was fitting that those who exercised jurisdiction in the courts, or took part in their proceedings, should, in a moral sense, give a bond to the community that they had the interests of the church at heart. Then, as to the third and highest of the three great professions—the profession of theology and admission to holy orders, it was a matter of course, and no one with the least sagacity could fail to perceive, that if the Universities were intended as the nurseries of the Church—if from them, as the hon. Gentleman stated, the ministers of the Church were all but exclusively selected, some formularies coinciding with the principles of the Church should be adopted and maintained in the two Universities. So far, therefore, as the profession of theology was concerned, the hon. Member had made out no case for remodelling those institutions. With regard to the attainment of degrees, there was a period in our history when, he believed, not one fifth of all the priests in England had been ordained in the Universities. He spoke of the time immediately subsequent to the Reformation. But in process of time, and on the more general diffusion of education, it was found necessary to require higher attainments in general knowledge and professional education than could be obtained any where except within the walls of the University; and then, and not until then, did the bishops most commonly require that parties seeking to be admitted to holy orders should produce evidence that they had previously attained to certain degrees in the University. Yet in the northern part of the island at this moment, where, from inferior circumstances, so far as this world's goods were concerned, the young men destined for holy orders could not always obtain a University education—in these northern dioceses the bishops frequently take a class of men who were termed literates to receive from these right rev. Prelates the imposition of hands. The increasing demand for general knowledge had induced the bishops to adopt this practice, by which it was not essential to have a University education. He believed there were hundreds of persons in the neighbourhood of the right hon. Baronet (Sir J. Graham) in the north of England who had been admitted to holy orders without being educated at either University. The College of St. Bees sent forth a great number of these persons; and he understood the education which they acquired in that institution was of a most excellent description, and justly entitled those who received it to be considered as fit candidates for holy orders. It was not the fact, then, that the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge had maintained a monopoly in respect to the profession of holy orders, any more than they had maintained a monopoly in respect to the professions of the law and medicine. The value of the degrees which they conferred was to be measured by the practical attainments of the persons seeking them. He must now advert to some individual cases, from which he would willingly have abstained. The hon. Gentleman in the course of his speech alluded to three cases; and he (Sir R. Inglis) was accordingly forced to use the names of the parties. Whether Mr. Ward were or were not a heretic—whether Dr. Hampden were or were not a heretic—whether Dr. Pusey were or were not a heretic, let him tell the hon. Member that those propositions were never submitted to the University of Oxford, and therefore had never been decided. The question never was as to heresy in any one of these three cases. But passing this by, he would observe that so far as he could foresee the result of such a Commission as had been proposed—judging from experience, or by analogy, there was nothing which could affect any one of these three cases, or any similar case which might hereafter arise. The facts had already been, he would not say before this House, for this House had no concern with them; but they had been so fully before the only tribunal—namely, the Convocation of the University—in which they arose, that he would venture to state that no inquiry instituted under the authority of the Crown could produce any alteration in the decisions in these cases. He had quoted the three names with regret, because he did not consider the House of Commons of England a fit tribunal to review the decisions of any body whatever having original and competant jurisdiction — the proper course being in all such cases by appeal to the next competent legal authority — and, therefore, an appeal—if an appeal ought to be made in respect to the decisions in these or any similar cases — ought not to be to such a body as this, but to the recognised tribunal of the country, to the visitors of the college, or the visitor of the University; and when all these resources had been exhausted, then, and not until then, should an appeal be made to the supreme authority in the nation. The hon. Gentleman had mentioned a fourth and fifth case. The one arose in Trinity College, Oxford. That case was to be met, in some degree, by the statement to which he (Sir R. Inglis) had incidentally adverted. The matter at issue was formally submitted to the visitor of the college, who, acting officially in such character himself, stated that the college had not exceeded the powers conferred upon it by the State. The statutes of the college, he understood, as construed by the authority of the visitor, possessed in themselves sufficient elasticity to justify the course which had been taken in that case. When, therefore, the visitor had pronounced an opinion favourable to the discretion exercised by the college, he could not think that that case furnished any ground on which the hon. Member could call for the exercise of the visitatorial power of the Crown in respect to this college. The case to which, however, the hon. Member made the most elaborate reference, was the case of Exeter College, Oxford; and the instance of Mr. Row, a disappointed candidate for a fellowship. He thought the governing body were justified in the decision they arrived at. The hon. Member said that, upon a vacancy occurring, the governing body issued advertisements for candidates; and he felt bound to admit that they were not called upon to issue those advertisements. The statutes of Exeter College required that the parties to be elected should be ad proficiendum in literis aptiores, in moribus honestiores, in facultatibus pauperiores; and that the election should be in favour of the candidates in whom these qualifications, or the greater part of them, were best combined. And he asked whether it were contended that the party elected was not qualified in these respects? He contended that Mr. Row was not so eminent in literary acquirements above the successful candidate for the fellowship, as to render such eminence decisive in his favour. Besides which, it is not stated that they had been competitors in one and the same University examination. He believed that nothing was more clear than that the eminence in acquirements of the senior wrangler of one year, was no test that he was of equal eminence with the senior wrangler of the following year. Unless the two parties were actually competing parties, the fact that one was in the second class, and the other in the first or third class, did not prove any relative preeminence in the one or the other. The absolute eminence of the one in Class Three, might at least be equal to the absolute eminence of the one in Class Two. It had been said that the gentleman chosen was of greater means than his unsuccessful competitor. If he had had greater means, however, it must still be recollected, that comparative poverty was, after all, only one of the qualifications requisite; and the college did not bind itself to take the poorest man, unless he combined with his poverty the other qualifications required. "But," said the hon. Member, "whether I am right or wrong, the Bishop, the visitor of the college, though he did give a decision in favour of the college, gave an opinion against it." That expression was a happy one; because the Bishop of Exeter, who was as capable of defending himself as any man living, had certainly, in this instance, not followed the advice given by a distinguished Lord Chancellor some sixty or seventy years ago to a person whom he was about to appoint as a colonial judge, namely, to give his decisions without assigning any reasons for them. "In nine cases out of ten," said that eminent personage, "your decisions will be right, and your reasons wrong." The Bishop of Exeter, in pronouncing his decision, had no business to do aught else; he was not entitled to enter into discussions incidental to the matter at issue; but while he liberated the college by his subsequent determination, he impugned it by the preamble to that determination—a course which the right rev Prelate would have avoided had he followed the advice of the Lord Chancellor to whom he had referred. It was the rule adopted by the Judges in cases of appeal from the decisions of the Commissioners of Taxes. They merely said that the decision of the Commissioners was right, or the decision was wrong; and he could not but wish that the Bishop of Exeter had, in this instance, adopted that course. It had been stated that the Bishop had complained that the college had not sent him the entire of their statutes, but only a part of them. Now, he had the Bishop's original letter; and in it, while he acknowledged the receipt of copies of the statutes at issue, he asked for no others; but merely that such a statement of facts should be made to him by the college as might show that the election had been in conformity to the statutes. The hon. Member believed that there had been no examination. Why, this very gentleman, who had been elected in 1842, had already gone through the examination in the previous year. He knew nothing of the classical or theological attainments of those gentlemen; but the statutes of Exeter College, or of any other college, did not require that the governing body should select merely the better of two bad candidates. They had known what the successful candidate was, by having had experience of his learning in the examination of the year before; and accordingly the unsuccessful candidate of the year 1841 had been taken and selected without a renewed examination in the year 1842. There were three tests of fitness. But the gentleman whose case had been advocated by the hon. Member, might have been deficient, or, at all events, might not have come up to the standard in all three of those tests. The election had not, he understood, been decided in reference to the peculiar theological opinions of the candidates. With respect to the statutes, the hon. Member had stated that Lord Radnor, some nine or ten years ago, had made a speech in the House of Lords, which had produced a declaration from the two Chancellors of Oxford and Cambridge, in reference to a review of the statutes of the Universities and of the colleges. Almost immediately after that, both Universities, at all events the University of Oxford—for he would answer for that University alone — undertook the revision of their statutes. Those statutes were, as the hon. Member well knew, divided into titles, of which there were twenty-one; and out of that number sixteen in a comparatively short period had come under the review of the governing body of the University. But the hon. Member must understand that though the governing body might investigate those statutes—he was now limiting himself to the University statutes—they could not force the result of their revision upon the whole body of the University itself; that remained for the Convocation; and unless the hon. Member meant by introducing the authority of the Crown to annihilate the authority of the Convocation, and give to the Crown the power of framing new statutes, or remodelling old ones, he had not advanced one step towards that course which he declared so desirable—namely, the adoption of statutes conformable to his own opinions, and the opinions of those who concurred with him. The question was, could they by any Act of the Crown, which did not annihilate the existence of the Convocation, effect such an alteration of the statutes as the hon. Member desired to carry out; and unless he could establish that proposition, the mere form of the institution of a Commission would produce no effect. The hon. Gentleman who had seconded the Motion had said, that there had been instances of such inquiry as that now recommended. He (Sir R. Inglis) did not deny it; but those instances were by no means applicable to the present case. Cases of inquiry in the time of Edward I. and Edward III., Richard II. and Edward IV., were not applicable to the present state of things. But there had been an attempt at interference made by the Crown at a later and more memorable period of our history; but he hoped that even the hon. Member himself would not desire to reintroduce such a precedent as had been laid down at that period. He (Sir R. Inglis) repeated, if they proved the existence of any abuse, and they had exhausted all legal and constitutional remedies, and had failed to repress those abuses—he repeated, he did not deny that the supreme authority of the Crown might be invoked to issue a Commission to investigate the state of the case, and found some remedial measure on that investigation, not by the authority of the Crown, but by that of Parliament. But whilst he admitted that, he contended that there had been no such case of abuse made out by the hon. Gentleman, either in respect to the funds of the University, the degrees there conferred, or the privileges enjoyed. He repeated that nothing short of an Act of Parliament, overthrowing or over-riding the authority of the Convocation, could deprive the Convocation of the power of so dealing with any of its own members. The hon. Gentleman who had seconded the proposition before the House, had alluded to the fact that institutions were founded in Oxford and Cambridge by Roman Catholics; and he expressed a hope that at some future period the members of that persuasion might be admitted to such colleges as King's College, Cambridge, which owed its foundation to the pious beneficence and munificence of Catholics. Although he did not deny that the colleges had been founded by persons of the faith of Rome, he denied that the fact being so entitled the parties for whom the hon. Member appeared as an advocate to the benefit of them. For three centuries the Parliament of England—not transferring the revenues from Roman Catholic to Protestant hands, but recognising and confirming the previous decisions of the Universities themselves—continued to sanction the voluntary act of the two Universities in adopting the Protestant faith; and even, therefore, if he admitted—which he on the contrary denied—that those institutions, as they existed at the present day, were the result of Roman Catholic munificence, he should deny the obligation of restitution after three centuries of possession. The hon. Member knew full well that the very first Act of Parliament of Queen Mary was to confirm all the titles then five years old; and it could not be contended, either privately or publicly, that what they had conferred they had a right to redeem—that having given, for instance, in the year 1532 the emoluments and revenues of a particular foundation to the Protestant Church of England, they were therefore at liberty to resume such gift without looking to the long interval of time that elapsed since the gift had been made. He denied, however, that it was the fact that the greater part of the revenues of the Universities were derived from Roman Catholic foundations. He would not enter into a detail of the many foundations established before and after the Reformation; but the preponderance in the case of the former was not quite so great as seemed to be supposed. He would rather come at once to the fellowships. He spoke at present of Oxford. There were 297 fellowships in the colleges founded before the Reformation, and thirty-three had been added since; but of the fellowships in the seven colleges founded since the Reformation, all of which were necessarily connected with Protestant munificence, the number was no less than 232, making an aggregate of 265 foundations by Protestants, while the Roman Catholic foundations were 297. The hon. Gentleman would be surprised to know, that all the professorships of Oxford, with the exception of the Margaret professorship, were founded by Protestants. The hon. Gentleman talked of the number of livings. Why, even within the last two centuries, in one college, in which in the year 1631 there were only five livings, forty-one livings had since been added. The hon. Gentleman could claim, therefore, less than he had anticipated for the Roman Catholics. Then, with respect to Cambridge, the same state of things was observable. Before the Reformation there had been 150 fellowships, and subsequently to the Reformation 173 founded. But, as far as regarded his argument, it mattered not whether fellowships were founded before or after. The hon. Member had stated that but a small number of students attended the lectures of the professors of botany, geology, and other branches not intimately connected with the ruling subjects of education in Oxford. But did that circumstance constitute one of the grounds upon which the present Motion rested? Did the hon. Gentleman contend that the attendance at those lectures should be compulsory or not? All depended upon that. If he contended that it ought to be compulsory, then he (Sir R. Inglis) could understand his object in the introduction of the subject; but if not, the introduction of the subject might indeed enlighten some, but it did not at all sustain the hon. Member's proposition. There might be persons at the University who did not give as much time to the study of geology, or botany, &c., as at a later period of life they might have desired; but when the hon. Gentleman stated that the Oxford education was only elementary, that education produced results which very few hon. Members of that House would be willing to be asked to exhibit in any arena of examination. He believed that this elementary education (as the hon. Member called it) was an education which qualified them to give the most detailed answers to the most searching questions in ancient and modern history, in logic, and in the classical literature both of Greece and Rome. With respect also to the most important of all the subjects of human inquiry, that of religion, that education was not elementary. On the contrary, the great body of those who now entered the University of Oxford possessed a greater knowledge of theology than fifty years ago was possessed, or at least exhibited, by any at the final examination. He must tell the hon. Member that no proficiency in general science or literature would now entitle any person to a degree at Oxford, unless he were first examined, and passed that examination satisfactorily, in his knowledge of the Scriptures and Religion. The candidate must now be able to answer such questions in theology as he believed half a century ago would not have been put even to a candidate for holy orders. And this was the result of that system of education, the working of which the hon. Member desired to interfere with. It was true the result might not be obtained in the way in which, five centuries ago, analogous results were desired to be obtained. It was true that in this interval the professorial system had been in a great degree abolished, and the tutorial system substituted for it; but had the one been abolished and the other substituted for it, except from a growing desire on the part of the two Universities to adapt themselves to the requirements of the time, and to give such an education as the means at their disposal placed most within their reach to those who were to receive it? And had not the result been that there had grown up in England a body of men engaged in tuition far more enlightened than fifty years ago could have been found, or even anticipated? But, be this as it might, it mattered not whether they pronounced for one or the other mode, unless they were prepared to deny that the substitution had been made by competent authority; so that with reference to this branch of the subject also he maintained that there was no ground for the Motion. There was nothing contrary to their constitution in the alteration; and he was satisfied that the change had been most beneficial to the great body of the members of the Universities. The hon. Member alluded to a pledge which he said was understood to have been given by the noble Chancellor of the University of Oxford, that the colleges should revise their statutes; and he said that whether that were so or not, no college in that University had so revised its statutes. In answer to this he could state, that different colleges had each formed a Committee for that purpose, and in many instances many colleges had made such alterations as in their judgment they thought necessary; but all that had been required of them was, not that they should alter, but that they should consider alterations. Their noble Chancellor never pledged them to make alterations—it would have been prejudging the whole case to have made such a pledge—all he pledged them to do was, to inquire into their statutes; and that pledge had been redeemed in the manner he had stated. The hon. Member had also stated that the visitor of one of the colleges could not obtain a sight of the college statutes. That might possibly be so, but he apprehended it was not very likely to occur; and if it were, could a Commission from the Crown give the power sought for? He apprehended that no lawyer in the House would state that any such power could be conferred by any such authority. The hon. Gentleman, before he addressed the House, presented a petition on the general subject. He did not deny the more than respectability, the eminence, of some of those who had signed that petition. But the hon. Gentleman himself admitted that they formed but a small portion of those educated at the Universities; and, with all respect, he thought the hon. Gentleman would not state that they were the most distinguished in their several Universities. He observed also that several of them were connected with what was now called University College, in Gower-street. He did not deny their right to address that House, and state their views on the general subject of academical education; but he thought their opinions were less entitled to weight from their belonging—he would not say to a rival institution, for he would not do it that honour, but—to an institution which had endeavoured to establish itself in opposition to these Universities. He apprehended, too, that even in Gower-street the same evils might exist which were felt so greatly by these Gentlemen; for even there professors were not part of the governing body of the college. But the question was, not what they were or desired to be; but whether it were important or not to the efficiency of the two ancient Universities that the professsors should be associated with the heads of houses in the government of these Universities. The hon. Gentleman stated that certain professors had few pupils, and had, therefore, more time to undertake a share in the superintendence. But he thought the hon. Member must first prove that abuse existed; as without such proof, the prayer of these petitioners was utterly irrelevant to the immediate question at issue—namely, that the House should address Her Majesty to institute an inquiry into the present system. Again, the petitioners complained of the preponderance of the ecclesiastical body in the government of the Universities. But they must alter the statutes of each college before they could effect any alteration in that respect. Let them contend, if they pleased, that those statutes were abused, and let the statutes be revised if they could prove it; but while they remained as they were, the result complained of was inevitable, and not to be altered by the Crown issuing a Commission, or by any measure which could be adopted by that House. The petitioners also complained that the elective franchise in the two Universities was limited to those who had subscribed the Thirty-nine Articles. Now, admitting, for the sake of argument, that this was an evil, again he asked, how could the hon. Member's proposition provide a remedy? He was almost inclined to pass over another subject the hon. Gentleman had touched upon; but he would just allude to it, for fear he should be thought disrespectful if he did not allude to it. He alluded to the distinction of rank at the Universities, which the hon. Member contended was too much observed, and especially in the University of Cambridge, The hon. Gentleman gave an account, which he meant should have been arousing, of the expense and colour of the different gowns worn by the different ranks of students at the University of Cambridge, and of the use to which, when worn out, those garments were applied. Now, he believed that the colour, and texture, and the gilding of these robes, had, in many most remarkable instances, proved no barrier to their wearer acquiring the most distinguished honours in either University. The first name that occurred to him was that of Lord Lyttelton, who, though he did wear a gilded robe of a blue colour, distinguished himself in a manner which no one the least favoured by birth, or the least endowed by fortune, could have exceeded. Moreover, the Chairman of that very University which the hon. Member for Weymouth would represent as a model University—the Chairman of that University which, he complained, had not received the same favour from Her Majesty's Ministers, either the late or the present, as they had showered down on the ancient Universities—the Chairman of the University of London (the Earl of Burlington), though he might have worn the same gilded robe, was so little affected by it, or deterred from attaining the great object of University education, that he attained the highest literary and scientific reputation. He knew also that there were many in both Houses of Parliament who had not been prevented either by rank or wealth, still less by the colour of their gowns, from exhibiting the brightest examples, not merely of academical education, but of the highest moral character and conduct during their progress through their Universities. On the other hand, there had been those who, from the lowest ranks of life, and without advantages of birth or fortune, had in the same way attained, notwithstanding the gowns they wore were of stuff, while those of others were of silk or satin, honours the most, merited and the most distinguished. It was no light thing with respect to this, that one of the most eminent men that of late years Oxford had produced—he alluded to the late Bishop Heber—had said that, so far from considering it an opprobrium that some young men from the lower ranks were brought up at the Universities, and retained there the badges of their inferior birth, he thought the fact of their being so brought up and distinguished, should be regarded as an encouragement to the young and struggling genius of the poor, instead of a degradation to them, when admitted to the Universities. The Archbishop who presided over the province of Canterbury at the commencement of the present century was one of these individuals; and in his own time, another distinguished individual had been raised to the Episcopal Bench, whom he remembered as a servitor at Christ Church. He contended, therefore, that they ought not so much to consider the temporary inferiority of these individuals during the period of their studies (for to that period alone was their inferiority limited); but rather, that it was because their position was inferior that they were thus admitted and afforded the means of attaining, like the distinguished individuals he had referred to, to so much eminence. He had trespassed for a longer period on the time of the House than he anticipated or desired; but the hon. Member for Weymouth had entered upon so many subjects in the course of his speech, he had thought it to be his duty not to omit to notice them; and if he had omitted to do so in any instance, it was not from disrespect to the hon. Member, or any indisposition to meet his statements or arguments. He should conclude by stating, that the only grounds on which the hon. Gentleman could rest his Motion was, not the wealth, not the endowments, not the great privileges of these Universities (these were historical facts); but proof of the abuse of such wealth, endowments, and privileges. Such proof had not been, and, in fact, could not be, offered, But, even if it did exist, before the hon. Member could justify his Motion, he must prove that it could not be remedied by existing tribunals, and that it could be remedied by the course which he proposed to Parliament. On these two propositions he rested his opposition to this Motion—first, that the hon. Gentleman had not proved abuse; and, secondly, that if it did exist, there were constitutional remedies provided by the Universities themselves, or other tribunals, the energies of which had not been tried or were not exhausted. He believed the experience of past visitations to the Universities were not consolatory to their friends, though they might have afforded a transient triumph to their enemies. He saw that no good was likely to result from the course pursued; but, on the contrary, experience led them to anticipate great evil; and, therefore, thanking the hon. Gentleman for the tone in which he had brought forward his Motion, and the House for the patience with which they had listened to his reasons for objecting to it, he would conclude by expressing his firm determination to oppose the Motion.

Mr. Wyse

said, that it was not his intention to go at length into the subject, after the able speech of his hon. Friend the Member for Weymouth. He thought that the House must feel satisfied at the tone in which this debate had been conducted, as much by the hon. Baronet on the one side, as by his hon. Friend on the other. He believed that neither the House nor the country would think that this was an unimportant discussion. It was by bringing the Universities more in contact with the Legislature, and through the Legislature with public opinion, that they would raise them up to the intelligence and wants of the existing generation. There were three distinct points in the question before the House. First, the necessity for improvement and reform in the Universities; the appliancy and purpose of the Commission for such improvement and reform; and the precedents and results of such a Commission. Formerly the Universities of the Continent were little more than elementary schools, and a great number of the students were almost children. In the famous University of Paris, one part of the system was that no bachelor should teach in that University under the age of twelve years, and he must have been a resident in the University for three years. He believed that the early statutes of Oxford would show that the studies there were more calculated for the use of children than of men. A most material alteration had been made in this respect from time to time. It had been stated that the old condition was still the characteristic of the Universities of Scotland; and it had been alleged on high authority that the University of Aberdeen had too much the character of a grammar school. The result of such a state of things was to pull down the Universities to institutions for elementary education, instead of raising elementary education in them to the character befitting a University. The hon. Baronet, throughout the whole of his speech, admitted that the education in our Universities was, perhaps, too elementary. The hon. Baronet seemed to think that the only object of his hon. Friend in moving for this Commission was to correct abuses; but, as he (Mr. Wyse) understood the nature of this intended Commission, it was to inquire how far the constitution of the Universities was adapted to the exigencies and state of the present time. His hon. Friend pointed out a number of facts, which were an indication of a spirit and system which did not harmonize with the state of things in the present day. Most of the observations of the hon. Baronet confirmed the statement of his hon. Friend. What was the answer of the hon. Baronet with respect to the state of education in the two Universities? Why, that many of the pupils in their examinations answered questions which would puzzle distinguished Members of that House. Why, this might be said with regard to many of the national schools in this country. For instance, he had been present at examinations of the children of the British and Foreign School, London, and of several of the National Schools in Ireland, where questions had been put and answered satisfactorily, which would have puzzled persons of great acquirements. Such an education, however, was too elementary for the immediate purposes of the time in Universities. The hon. Baronet asked whether they would make the attendance in the botanical and geological classes compulsory, as in the Greek and Latin classes? His answer was, if the pupils did not attain a rank in their scientific classes, he did not see why the attendance should not be compulsory, as in the Greek and Latin classes. He did not wish to underrate the value of a knowledge of ancient literature as it existed in the Universities of this country, where not merely a knowledge of the language, but of the spirit and habits which characterized the institutions of the ancients, was inculcated. But to a knowledge of their languages, why not add a sufficient knowledge of the elements of theoretical and practical science, which were not only taught in the Universities of the Continent, but in many of the popular schools in this country? In the school annexed to the Mechanics Institution at Liverpool, there was not a pupil of any note connected with it who was not familiar with the elements of science. The hon. Baronet said that these studies could be cultivated in after life. Undoubtedly this might be the case; but did a parent or guardian ever give directions to omit the teaching of Greek or Latin, with the idea that at a future period of life a knowledge of Greek might be obtained? If they dealt with the ancient languages as they did with the natural sciences, the result would be that they would be neglected, as the study of the natural sciences were in the mature and after life of most of the Members of the Universities. The argument of the hon. Baronet was that no evil resulted from the present mode of proceeding; and he illustrated this by referring to the career of several distinguished men who had taken medical degrees at Oxford. But this would not meet the objection of his hon. Friend, for his observation did not apply to a few cases, but to the number and class of cases. With respect to another point, namely, where pupils were educated in the same classes in the Universities, whether artificial distinctions of rank should be raised. He knew when he was in the University of Dublin, a tradition of a circumstance existed which did honour to the persons concerned. It appeared that it was the custom at the period to which he referred, for the sizars of the University to wait in the hall until the fellow-commoners had dined; the latter at last became so annoyed at this, that they prayed the heads of the University to abolish the custom, which was done accordingly. It would have done honour to Lord Lyttelton and other distinguished men whose names had been mentioned, if they had attempted to get rid of these offensive distinctions between themselves and men who had not the advantages of birth and station, and who were often not merely their equals but their superiors in academic attainments. The Universities of the Continent not only differed from the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge, but they differed from each other. Perhaps the University of Paris differed from the Universities of this country more than any other. It not only existed in Paris, but it had branches which extended over the whole of France; and its character was more influenced by this circumstance than by the establishment in Paris. In the Universities of Germany and Italy, the four great faculties were always to be met with. In the Universities of Scotland, also, as in those of the Continent, there were the four faculties of theology, jurisprudence, medicine, and the arts. With respect to scientific education, the answer of the hon. Baronet was not sufficient in saying that distinguished men had emanated from the medical school at Oxford. No doubt there had been eminent medical men belonging to that University; but the question was how many more distinguished men might have appeared under another system, considering the great demand there was for medical men. It was to be considered what improvements might be made on this point in the Universities. The question then was, whether a Commission was a proper mode of proceeding. As for the alleged rights of the Universities, he conceived that no bodies should exist beyond inquiry at the instance of the Crown or the Legislature. It should also be recollected that such a Commission had been appointed within the last few years to inquire into the Universities of Scotland; and the hon. Baronet had himself admitted that such Commissioners had formerly been appointed to inquire into the state of the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge. Such Commissioners had been appointed in the time of Elizabeth, of Edward VI., of Mary, and of Charles I.; and although the proceedings of some of those Commissioners might have been objectionable, still it was clear that they had been appointed without being considered derogatory to the dignity of the Universities. It was admitted, that the English Universities were not solely of Catholic origin, but that they were established partly by Catholics and partly by Protestants; and he could not see why Catholics should be excluded from the advantages of education in such institutions. The object of his hon. Friend (Mr. Christie) was not to destroy the Universities, but accommodate them to the altered circum-to stances of the country and to the new generation; and, though he was not personally connected with either of the English Universities, he felt anxious to see them placed in the most efficient condition, and he would, therefore, vote for the Motion of his hon. Friend.

Mr. A. Hope

said, as a Member of one of the Universities, he felt deeply interested in this question. The hon. Gentleman who proposed this Motion had not forgotten now that he was Member for Weymouth, that he was lately a scholar of Trinity College, Cambridge; but he did not think his speech would carry conviction to the mind of any hon. Member, or even that the hon. Gentleman himself had great faith in his own arguments. The hon. Gentleman's speech might tell very well as an article in the Examiner, or Spectator, or Punch; but he did not think it would form so attractive a pamphlet as his last speech on this question. What was the object of the hon. Gentleman in moving for the appointment of this Commission? Was it to end in a blue book? He considered that the grounds on which they were called upon to revolutionize the Universities were most pitiful and miserable. What would be said if it were proposed to issue a Commission to inquire into the present condition of the House of Commons, merely because very few of the Members of that House were in the habit of attending prayers? As to the observation made in the course of the present discussion, that the collegiate system had within a very recent period overlaid the professorial system, he should only say, that the collegiate system was of very ancient date; that three centuries ago, when it was proposed to form an establishment in Dublin for the education of youth, Queen Elizabeth founded a College, and the system was then old. Then, with respect to what was said regarding the circumstances in which sizars were placed, and the reflections which had been made on the fellow-commoners of our Universities, for not having petitioned, as those of Dublin had done, for the removal of their disadvantages, he might be permitted to observe, that neither in dress nor by any outward mark whatever, were they distinguishable from the other students of the University. It was true that they sat in a particular part of the chapel, and it was also true that they dined at an hour different from the other students; but by nothing else were they to be distinguished from the great body of the members of the University; and Trinity College, Cambridge, had lately of its own accord rendered sizars eligible to College scholarships in their second year, putting them on a level with the pensioners, whereas, previously, the sizars had not been eligible till their third year. Where, then, was there any justification of the complaint about sizars, when the first college in one of the Universities had reformed all the circumstances that had been objected to? The hon. Member for Weymouth seemed to think that the members of the University had little reason to be proud of their acquirements; and that they quitted the University with the possession of little that could be called general knowledge. Now, there was really no foundation for such a charge. He would take the value of an average degree of success at the University of Cambridge. He would suppose a member of the University to take moderate and not first-rate honours both in mathematics and in classics; and in the mean time to pass with credit through his collegiate examinations; which degree he thought the purest test of the University system: such a student would then be a senior optime in the mathematical examination, and would be in the second class of the classical tripos. Students attaining that position in the University acquired, of necessity, a competent acquaintance with moral philosophy, with geometry, and other branches of pure mathematics; with algebraic analysis, and certain other sciences not comprehended in the term "pure mathematics;" as, for example, those physical sciences to which mathematics were applied, amongst which he might mention mechanics. The student would also acquire a fair knowledge of the Greek and Latin languages, and such a command over the English as to be capable of elegant translation from the learned languages. Was not that as fair an amount of knowledge as young men of twenty-one or twenty-two years of age could be expected to acquire anywhere? But, in addition to this, the young men at our Universities had ample opportunities of acquiring a sound knowledge of botany and of anatomy, and of political economy. He felt it was not easy for gentlemen who had never belonged to any of our Universities to enter into the spirit of this discussion; but he was sure every one must, upon a little reflection, see the inexpediency of raising the qualification for admission into the University. If a higher degree of knowledge were demanded than was now necessary, young men of eighteen or nineteen would not repair to the Universities; and those establishments, instead of being places of education for youth, would become lottery-offices for middle age. He would, therefore, call that legislation rash which demanded further and higher qualifications than were at present required. The Universities were establishments of nice and delicate constitution; and those who had not been brought up within their walls ought to be cautious how they meddled with University regulations. He was sorry to have troubled the House at so much length, and he should not occupy their attention any further than to read a short extract from Mr. Hüber, a Prussian of distinction, who had come over here on purpose to investigate our University system, whose authority he had no doubt would have much greater weight with the House than any that he could urge. The words of Mr. Hüber were as follows:— That in England, and everywhere else, authority is vested in the State, when circumstances require to make changes in the statutes of the Universities, need not be insisted on here. Yet every authority may be abused, and what is the right use of it can be settled only on moral grounds. If a corporation has flagrantly neglected its duties, and more particularly those which concern its especial vocation, the higher powers would, doubtless, be bound to supply the deficiency; but the presumption should always be in favour of the corporation and its good intentions; nor ought any rash interference to take place without the greatest caution, and as the most extreme resource. Thus, although it would be the greatest folly to deny that a visitation empowered by the King in Parliament might constitutionally introduce any changes whatever at the Universities, it is no less true that such an interference would be the greatest stupidity and the most crying iniquity. Iniquity as opposed to illegality is the only injustice which can possibly be committed by the King in Parliament; for do what they will is legal. Before rash interference can be justifiable, a proof must be brought, most convincing to all unprejudiced persons of the time, well acquainted with the facts, of that which has hitherto never been proved at all—namely, that the results to be obtained by such a measure are exclusively and unconditionally required by the laws of God and man, and by the vocations for which the Universities were founded, and cannot be had by the voluntary agency of the Universities themselves. Looking, then, at the constitution of our ancient Universities, and looking at the opinions which enlightened foreigners entertain with respect to them, he did hope that the hon. Member for Weymouth would withdraw his Motion.

Mr. Hume

said, with reference to what had fallen from the hon. Member who had just addressed the House, he should observe, that, whether the proceedings and speeches of the hon. and learned Member for Weymouth were or were not made the subject of an article in the Spectator or the Examiner, the hon. Member for Maidstone might consider himself fortunate if his own name did not appear in Punch. The hon. Member told them to beware of touching the Universities; but the Motion before the House was to pray Her Majesty to grant a Commission, not to pull down or rob the Universities, or interfere with their privileges, but to inquire into all matters relating to their revenues and trusts, and to the state of education, learning and religion in those institutions. The ground on which he (Mr. Hume) supported this Motion was, that those Universities were national establishments. It had been said that they were private property; now, if that were the case, they belonged to the Catholics; but, if they were public property transferred to their present possessors by the authority of Parliament, then they came within the range of Parliamentary inquiry. Was it not singular that the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge were the only Universities exempted from Parliamentary inquiry? He was anxious to have inquiry for the purpose of ascertaining what were the statutes which prohibited all those who were not members of the Church of England from enjoying the advantage of those establishments. He could not conceive anything more injurious to the general education of the country than having a national establishment limiting its instruction to a certain class. At the time those institutions were founded, as the hon. Member for Waterford remarked, no difference of religious opinion was allowed. Conformity was then the law, and, consequently, every individual in the country was admissible to the benefits of those establishments. That was not the case at present; and the result was that Roman Catholics and other Dissenters—amounting to about one-half of the community, were excluded from those Universities. He thought those institutions should give instructions to all classes, and if their funds were insufficient, he should not object to a Parliamentary grant for that purpose. He hoped that if the right hon. Baronet at the head of the Government did not think fit to grant a Commission, he would state the reasons why those colleges should be exempt from inquiry. He (Mr. Hume) should certainly support the Motion.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer

said, that had he only been called upon to address the House on the present question in his capacity as one of the Members for the University of Cambridge, he should not have considered it necessary to say anything in reply to the Motion of the hon. Member for Weymouth; for, having listened to his speech with great attention, he had heard nothing in so far as the University with which he had the honour to be connected was concerned, which in any way affected or impugned the manner in which they discharged the sacred trust committed to the charge of that institution; still less had there been anything urged which could be construed into a censure upon the proceedings of that University, or any abuses or mismanagement alleged to exist which it required the strong arm of power to remedy. He should, therefore, have been content to rest on the good sense of the House as to the propriety of employing the cumbrous machinery of a Parliamentary inquiry against an establishment with respect to which no breach of trust or violation of duty was alleged to have been committed. But it was in his capacity as a Member of Parliament, and also as a Member of the Government, that he felt called upon to state to the House the course which he felt it incumbent on him to take with respect to the present Motion. A proposal to appoint such a Commission as was contemplated by the terms of the Motion, and the interposition of an Address of the House of Commons to the Crown to appoint such a Commission, were no light measures to take. Such a course of proceeding was only adopted as an instrument of reform where great evils and abuses were known to exist. But these measures were not weapons to be called into everyday use for the mere purpose of gratifying a prurient curiosity or elucidating a favourite theory. Hon. Gentlemen might think it better for young men to be educated under professors than by the aid of private tutors; but such questions were more fit for discussion and decision elsewhere. They did not call for a Parliamentary Commission; nor was such an instrument required—even if it could be properly applied—to examine into the revenues, discipline, and statutes of the Universities. The hon. Member for Montrose had argued in favour of the Motion, upon the ground that if there were no abuses to correct in the Universities, why should the House refuse to appoint a Commission? He (the Chancellor of the Exchequer) had heard the same argument applied in the case of individuals. He had heard it said, "Put a man upon his trial, and if not guilty, you will prove his innocence." But he was not of that opinion. The very fact of putting a man upon his trial implied a censure upon his conduct; and it often happened that, although the innocence of the individual arraigned might be satisfactorily proved, the consequences of his accusation remained behind, and the world at large held him to have been culpable, solely because he had been put upon his trial. Such he had often observed to have been the effect upon the public mind with respect to the accusation and trial of individuals; and how much more strongly did this apply to the two Universities—how much more was it calculated to produce more serious consequences? It was no light matter to enter upon an inquiry such as that contemplated by the Motion, in places devoted to the education of young men. He believed that the same habits pervaded the University of Oxford, as were prevalent in the establishment with which he was connected; but, at all events, he could speak with confidence, as far as the University of Cambridge was concerned, when he stated that such an inquiry as that which it was proposed by the Motion before the House to institute, would most materially interfere with the duties of the various professors and teachers; would prevent the course of education from being regularly pursued; would beget differences of opinion, and raise controversies amongst the authorities of the University, first, as to the nature and legality of the inquiries; then, as to the propriety and expediency of the course of education pursued; and, finally, would have the effect of throwing doubt upon the existing system, and unsettling every man in the University, and rendering him unfit for the performance of his duties so long as the inquiry continued. If great abuses had been imputed—if there had been a great misapplication of revenue—if an indifference to the trust confided to them had been implied—if they saw that the Universities sent forth nothing but ignorance and immorality into the land,—there might have been some more plausible ground for this course of proceeding—there might then have been some ground for suspending the course of education whilst inquiries were instituted but he did say, that in the absence of such imputation (and no such imputation had been made—the contrary, indeed, had been implied by the hon. Member for Montrose), it was no part of the duty of that House, or of the Government, to sanction an inquiry which could produce no ultimate useful result; but which must produce a great extent of immediate disarrangement, the consequences of which would continue to be felt for a long series of years. It had been stated in the course of the debate, that the Universities were antiquated establishments; that they had not kept pace with the spirit of the times; that they had taken no measures to adapt themselves to the altered wants of the community. He begged most distinctly to deny the assertion. The hon. Member who had introduced the debate had read an extract from a work of the Dean of Ely, whose name he could never mention without the profoundest respect and affection, to the effect that there were great objections to the existing statutes of the Universities, and to the mode in which oaths were administered with respect to the observance of the statutes; but the hon. Gentleman, when bringing that indictment (so to speak) against the Universities, and stating the opinions of a distinguished man with respect to the state of things that existed in the Universities, might, in candour, have added what he thought could not have been unknown to the hon. Gentleman, that the objections raised by the Dean of Ely had, with the consent of the Crown and the approbation of the visitors, been since that time removed. The hon. Gentleman also must have known that the oaths that were taken at the University had, by a decree of the Senate of the University, been abandoned in most instances; and parties were now only required to affirm that they would subject themselves to the statutes, or that they would submit patiently to the penalties which the statutes imposed; a declaration harmless in itself, and one which, he maintained, was necessary to insure the proper obedience of those who went to study at that seat of learning. As regarded the improvement of these institutions, the pledge that had been given ten years ago by the Chancellor of the University of Cambridge in the House of Lords, had been to a great extent fulfilled, and was in the course of fulfilment in the colleges, the statutes of which had not yet been revised; for it was known to every one connected with that University that the statutes of the several colleges not yet revised, were in the course of revision, and that they would at no distant period be placed on a footing (concurrently with the consent of the Crown and the approbation of the visitors) which would remove from them the objections which had at a former period been urged against them. But the hon. Member for Waterford (Mr. Wyse) doubted whether the Universities kept pace in knowledge and science with the progress of the age; and said that in earlier times the colleges were places where children were sent for the elementary portion of their education, as well as for the study of the higher walks of science; but if the hon. Gentleman had had a greater knowledge of the Universities, he would have seen that so far from adhering to that elementary system of education—so far from continuing the use of those particular works which, by the original statutes, were ordered to be read in the different classes, the colleges had enlarged their sphere, and had embraced a circle of knowledge commensurate with the improved science of the age, and with the extended knowledge of literature throughout Europe and the world. It had been said in the course of the debate, as it had been said before, that a classical and mathematical education was not the object to which the minds of youth should be confined during the time that they were going through the University course. That was, with some persons, a popular argument; but it was an extremely disputable point, and one which he did not think it was possible properly to discuss in that House; he feared that if the House were to attempt to lay down by law what was absolutely the best practical system of education, they might not be very successful. Mr. Whewell, the present learned Master of Trinity College, Cambridge, had, with great ability, laid it down in a work which he had published upon this subject, that there were the best reasons for limiting the early instruction of youth to the acquirement of means which might hereafter enable them to bring forth fruit, in preference to diverting the mind at an early age to that variety of science enumerated by the hon. Member for Waterford as the necessary object of an University education. Into that subject, however, he did not feel himself then bound to inquire; neither did he think it necessary to the discussion of the present question. What were they, as rational men, to look to in judging of the system of education at present pursued? They were not to regard what was done in the particular lecture-room of this or of that college; but if they acted upon any intelligible principle, they must look to the effect of the system upon the individuals who came from the Universities, and who entered on different professions in this country. Let them look at the young men who went forth from the Universities in the clerical profession; let them see how they performed the duties of their calling—how they undertook the task of administering to the relief and comforts of the poor—how they enlightened those amongst whom it was their lot to be placed—and how in their station they rendered themselves useful in the highest degree. Let them take University men in other stations of life—the law, for example; and let them see how they rose there. The men who had attained the highest honours at the bar were the men who attained the highest honours at the University. It had been said by one hon. Gentleman that college honours were only useful as a means of temporary favour amongst a man's contemporaries, and that they produced no ultimate good. How did it stand with respect to the Judges and the Bar at this moment? The Lord Chancellor was second wrangler—he achieved high honours at the University—he has obtained high honours in political and legal life; Lord Langdale, the present Master of the Rolls, was a senior wrangler at Cambridge; Sir F. Pollock, senior wrangler; Chief Justice Tindal, a wrangler; Sir L. Shadwell, senior wrangler; Baron Alderson, senior wrangler; Mr. Justice Maule, also senior wrangler; Baron Parke, and Mr. Justice Coltman, both wranglers; all of them men attaining to distinction, both in classics and in science, at the Universities, and marching at once straight for- ward to the head of their profession, on emerging from that school which they were now told rendered men unfit for the ordinary occupations of life. But it had been said that in science and in history we had no men to be compared with the scientific, literary, and historical men of other times. He might in answer to that refer at once to Mr. Hallam, who had been alluded to by his hon. Friend the Member for Oxford, as an instance of a man who, as an historian, would stand comparison with the members of any University, or with any man not a member of a University. He did not speak disparagingly of Mr. Bailey, or of Mr. Mill, to whom the hon. Gentleman had referred; but he did say that the Universities had sent forth many men as able and as distinguished. Take the line of science—where would they find men to rank with Sir John Herschell and Mr. Airey? He would put it to any man, where were superior men to be found in any University, on the Continent or elsewhere? If he were to read the whole list of literary men, he should only fatigue the House with the number; but he might add to Mr. Hallam, Dr. Thirlwall, the present Bishop of St. David's, Mr. Merivale, Dr. Gaisford, Mr. Donaldson, the Bishop of London, and the Bishop of Gloucester—eminent alike as divines, and for their knowledge of the learned languages. And was he then to admit that the Universities did not send forth men eminent and distinguished in their respective walks of life, or that they were to be made the subject of distrust on account of the insufficient manner in which they discharged their duties? In reference to men distinguished for science, he could not refrain from naming Professor Sedgwick and Professor Buckland; names as eminent—he might say more eminent—than any that could be found in their particular branch on the Continent. He might, indeed, sum up all as to our non-advancement in the contemporary literature of the age, by naming the present Master of Trinity, Mr. Whewell, who had given to the world a work upon philosophy which would raise him to the highest point of eminence amongst men of science, and which would elevate him, if not above, at least to a level, with those illustrious individuals to whom he had referred. With respect next to the particular question, whether the tutorial or the professorial system were preferable, whether the Eng- lish or the German were the better?—in England, University education partook in some degree of domestic tuition. The conduct and morals of the young men were watched, their habits were observed. In Germany, the case was different. Individuals thrown into a University chose what professors they would attend, and attended or not, as best suited their fancy. There was not, in fact, that degree of control exercised there that existed in our Universities; there was not that superintendence which he (the Chancellor of the Exchequer) maintained was essential to the good government of youth, and which, independent of literary purposes, was necessary to make them good members of society. He should have felt a delicacy in depending solely upon his own judgment with reference to Germany. He preferred trusting to a work of Professor Robinson, who was well able to give an honest and independent opinion upon this subject. Professor Robinson said, in his Concise View of Education in the German Universities:If we look now for a moment at the actual state and character of the German Universities, we shall find, along with all their vast and acknowledged advantages, several great and prominent evils, some of which have crept gradually into practice, and are susceptible of correction, while others are inherent in the system itself. Of the former kind is the want of personal intercourse between the professors and students. As a general fact, most of the professors have no intercourse whatever with their pupils except in the lecture-rooms. They take no interest in them any further than to induce them, if possible, to attend their own lectures, and thus obtain the fee; but do not take the trouble to inquire whether a young man properly improves his time, nor whether he has chosen the best course of study, or the best means to help him forward in his progress. Any parental interest in a young man, or watch over his moral development, is a thing, generally speaking, entirely unknown. Individual professors do, indeed, occasionally invite a few of their own particular pupils to their houses, but rather as a matter of ceremony than out of any regard to their moral or intellectual culture. But any parental interest or any watch over the morals of the students were entirely unknown. That was, he admitted with this Gentleman, a great evil, and it would attend the system which hon. Gentlemen would, if they had the will, introduce. Whatever defects there might be in the English Universities, he thought that the continuance of something like parental control was not a ground on which the House would call upon the Crown to issue a Commission for the purpose of inquiring into the state of the Universities The hon. Gentleman had stated that with respect to medical men the English Universities were miserably deficient. He said, if they looked to Cambridge and Oxford there were only 12 degrees granted to doctors in physic, while at the University of London, 120 degrees of doctor in physic were granted during the same time. He must observe, however, that the number of degrees conferred afforded no very accurate test of the eminence of the men who received them. He doubted whether it was best that an University should liberally grant degrees to medical men, rather than restrict them to those who should be in every way qualified. This at least he could say, that the physician who was the most eminent medical man of the present day, was a member of the University of Cambridge—he referred to Dr. Chambers, with respect to whom every one admitted, that if the University had conferred a degree on him alone, it could successfully maintain its claim of not sending forth a person who was not in every way qualified to maintain the reputation of his country. The hon. Member for Maidstone had referred to other topics which the hon. Member for Weymouth had brought forward; surely they were not subjects which would influence the House to ask for so solemn a proceeding as the issue of a Commission. Was it enough to say that there was a distinction in favour of noblemen, and that they sat at a higher table in the hall; or was it any accusation that in this early stage of life, and in the Universities, noblemen should receive that respect and precedence which their birth entitled them to in every other society? Surely it was not inconsistent with decorum that this respect should not be withheld from those who were entitled to it. Although, however, there might be a distinction of rank maintained in the University, that did not separate the highest from the lowest; and for himself he was proud to say, that he had communication with men of all ranks, and that amongst the lower were those for whom he entertained the sincerest friendship and regard, and to whose acquaintance at the University he looked back with the sincerest pleasure. When the hon. Gentleman said that it had been the custom for the sizars to perform menial offices, and to wait upon those who had higher rank and station, but not superior knowledge, he only so far afforded an argument against inquiry, since the Universities had themselves kept pace with the spirit of the age, and had discarded usages which had been, in earlier times, common to them as well as to other societies. The last topic to which the hon. Gentleman had adverted as an argument for requiring the interposition of the House, and on which the hon. Member for Montrose principally insisted was, that similar inquiries had been made into the Scottish Universities; and, therefore, said he, because, with respect to the Scottish Universities, which were then in a very defective state, the Crown had issued a Commission here, it ought to issue one to inquire into the English Universities, where no defects exist. He said, however, that the circumstances were entirely different in the two cases. In the case of the Scotch Universities, a Commission was needed: abuses had previously existed; inquiry had been sought for by the Universities, and had led to reforms and improvements. It was then said that they ought to issue a Commission, because no religious test ought to be applied in the Universities. That had been a question of frequent discussion, and he had more than once expressed his opinion upon it. He said, again, with respect to the University with which he was connected, that there was no restriction of education to persons of any creed, provided the party would conform to the rules for education laid down in the University, It was true that there was a religious test applied on taking that degree, which would enable the individual to become a governing Member of the Church; and it was then required that, in addition to the pledge of loyalty to the State, he should give a pledge that he did conform to the doctrines of the established religion of the country. This did not prevent young men, desirous of obtaining education, from conforming to the regulations of the place; there were many who did so conform, and had all the benefit which an University education could supply. After the discussions that had taken place on this subject, he did not think it becoming in him to detain the House by entering into further details upon particular points. He remained of the opinion he had before expressed, that the hon. Gentleman had made out no case for any interference, or for the course of proceeding he recom- mended; he was calling forth the extreme power of the constitution, and could not hope to do more than gratify individual curiosity; and such a proceeding was neither politic with regard to the country, nor respectful towards the Universities. It was interfering with the course of education as at present conducted: he had shown that it was conducted faithfully, and that the results were good. The course now proposed would only lead to bickering in the Universities, and to disputes out of them: it would suspend useful progress, and the result would be the same as the former ill-judged Commission, which was admitted by the parties themselves to have produced evil rather than good.

Viscount Palmerston

would say a few words before voting for the Motion of his hon. Friend; and if any person in that House had been convinced by the able and eloquent speech of his hon. Friend, he did not think that conviction would be shaken by the speech they had just heard from the right hon. Gentleman the Chancellor of the Exchequer, because he was bound to say that the speech, especially in the part refusing inquiry, both in its argument and its line of topics, carried him back to the happy period when they were members of the debating society in their University, and when in their speculative society they were discussing a question which could lead to no practical result, as it could in a body like the House of Commons. The right hon. Gentleman went into an argument against a Commission which would be a bar to any inquiry. If the argument had come from the hon. and gallant Member for Lincoln, who had an intuitive aversion to every Commission, it would be perfectly consistent and intelligent; but an argument so stout against any inquiry coming from the Member of a Government which had not abstained from all inquiry, but had issued Commissions, and might probably issue others, did not seem to be an argument which was likely to carry much weight. It was not on the ground of censure by issuing a Commission that he voted for his hon. Friend's Motion. He implied no blame; he implied no breach of trust; he would not, on the other hand, deny the great merit, neither would he diminish the value of these institutions; he had no doubt that the system of education had been attended by great and important benefits, and that it had produced to the State many great and eminent men. With regard to the profession of the law in parti- cular, he and the right hon. Gentleman had the honour to belong to the University of Cambridge, which was justly proud that the results of the mental discipline there, and the severe studies of mathematics, and the exact sciences, had produced such results in the law. But it was not enough to say that a great institution like the University of Cambridge had produced a great number of able and distinguished men; and if it could be assumed that the system of education was capable of improvement, it was no reflection that a Commission should issue which might lead to an improvement in the system at present existing. The right hon. Gentleman admitted that great improvements had been made; yet if a Motion had been brought forward previously to their being made, he would venture to say that it would have been met by the same arguments as were now used. The only argument against his hon. Friend's Motion was, that the Universities contained within themselves the power, and that they had the disposition, to make all such improvements as a Commission would suggest. Without making any reflection, he doubted in the first place whether they had the power, and in the next whether it could be expected that they should find in them the disposition. Men brought up in one system, when they were called upon to act with respect to it, had their minds accustomed to the particular state of things which existed; and it could not be expected that men in their situation should view things in the same light as persons unconnected with the institution, and of different creeds. Therefore, with every disposition in the leading men of the Universities to make any improvements in their power, it was quite impossible in the nature of men that they should bring to the examination of the question the same impartial and uninfluenced view as Commissioners appointed by the Crown and by Parliament. Without imputing any blame to the Universities, and with every disposition to give them credit for the merit to which they were justly entitled, he thought his hon. Friend ought to succeed in the Motion he had proposed to the House. He would venture to say, moreover, that some of the most distinguished men in the University of Cambridge, to which he had the honour to belong—he could not speak of Oxford—were of opinion that inquiry would be advantageous to the Universities themselves. The right hon. Gentleman said he would not discuss the relative merits of professorial and tutorial education; but, that if one particular system was not successful, he would give due consideration to the advantages that might arise from another. That was an argument why a Commission should be appointed; because Commissioners, coming to the inquiry without habitual prejudices, would be able to enter into those discussions for carrying on which the right hon. Gentleman said that Parliament was not fitted, and which could not be carried on impartially in the Universities. The last point which the right hon. Gentleman referred to, also formed a ground—and a strong ground—why a Commission should be appointed—he meant the expediency of inquiring whether you could not extend more amply to persons of different religious persuasions the means of attaining not only the education, but the honours of the Universities. It was very well to say that the doors of the Universities were open to all who wished to go through the course of study adopted in these Universities, and that no test was imposed with regard to religion. But he would ask, why were not the honours, which were an incentive to study, open to all? It was a fallacy to say that you admitted Dissenters to all the benefits of the system of education pursued in the Universities, if you debarred them from obtaining those honours which were the impelling cause to exertion and study. Then, again, if they considered University education in the light in which the right hon. Gentleman had adverted to it—as a means of cementing friendships which were to last for life, and of bringing together persons from different branches of society, and producing that equality which the accidental circumstances of birth and social position did not favour—considering the question in that light, he would ask could anything be more beneficial for the social interests of the country than so to arrange your plan of education, that persons of all religions might assemble and associate together, and thus form and establish friendships calculated to extinguish all the bitterness of religious distinction, and which the future circumstances of life could never destroy? Upon that ground also he conceived that his hon. Friend had made out a case which had not been in the least degree shaken by what had fallen from the right hon. Gentleman; and without detaining the House longer, he would merely say, that he should support the Motion.

The House divided:—Ayes 82; Noes 143:—Majority 61.

List of the AYES.
Aglionby, H. A. Hutt, W.
Aldam, W. Langston, J. H.
Armstrong, Sir A. Marjoribanks, S.
Baring, rt. hon. F. T. Marsland, H.
Barnard, E. G. Matheson, J.
Bellew, R. M. Mitcalfe, H.
Berkeley, hon. C. Mitchell, T. A.
Blewitt, R. J. Morris, D.
Bouverie, hon. E. P. Murray, A.
Bowes, J. Oswald, J.
Bowring, Dr. Paget, Lord A.
Brotherton, J. Palmerston, Visct.
Browne, hon. W. Parker, J.
Bulkeley, Sir R. W. Pechell, Capt.
Busfeild, W. Pigot, rt. hon. D.
Byng, rt. hon. G. S. Pulsford, R.
Chapman, B. Rawdon, Col.
Childers, J. W. Redington, T. N.
Colborne, hn. W. N. R. Russell, Lord E.
Collett, J. Rutherfurd, A.
Currie, R. Shelburne, Earl of
Curteis, H. B. Stanley, hon. W. O.
Dalmeny, Lord Stansfield, W. R. C.
Dawson, hon. T. V. Stewart, P. M.
Dennistoun, J. Stuart, W. V.
Divett, E. Strickland, Sir G.
Duke, Sir J. Strutt, E.
Duncan, G. Tancred, H. W.
Duncombe, T. Thornely, T.
Ebrington, Visct. Traill, G
Elphinstone, H. Trelawny, J. S.
Etwall, R. Tufnell, H.
Evans, W. Warburton, H.
Ferguson, Col. Ward, H. G.
Forster, M. Wawn, J. T.
Gibson, T. M. Williams, W.
Heathcoat, J. Worsley, Lord
Heneage, E. Wyse, T.
Hill, Lord M. Yorke, H. R.
Hindley, C.
Horsman, E. TELLERS.
Howard, hn. C. W. G. Christie, W. D.
Hume, J. Ewart, W.
List of the NOES.
Ackers, J. Buckley, E.
Acland, T. D. Cardwell, E.
Adare, Visct. Carew, W. H. P.
Antrobus, E. Chelsea, Visct.
Arbuthnott, hon. H. Christopher, R. A.
Arkwright, G. Chute, W. L. W.
Bailey, J. jun. Clayton, R. R.
Baring, H. B. Clerk, rt. hon. Sir G.
Baring, rt. hon. W. B. Clive, Visct.
Baskerville, T. B. M. Clive, hon. R. H.
Blackburne, J. I. Cockburn, rt. hn. Sir G.
Blackstone, W. S. Colvile, C. R.
Boldero, H. G. Compton, H. C.
Borthwick, P. Copeland, Ald.
Botfield, B. Corry, rt. hon. H.
Bowles, Adm. Courtenay, Lord
Broadley, H. Cripps, W.
Bruce, Lord E. Damer, hon. Col.
Darby, G. Lockhart, W.
Denison, E. B. Long, W.
Dickinson, F. H. Lowther, Sir J. H.
Douglas, Sir C. E. Lowther, hon. Col.
Drummond, H. H. Lyall, G.
Du Pre, C. G. Lygon, hon. Gen.
East, J. B. Mackenzie, T.
Eaton, R. J. Mackenzie, W. F.
Egerton, Sir P. Mackinnon, W. A.
Emlyn, Visct. Maclean, D.
Entwisle, W. McGeachy, F. A.
Escott, B. McNeill, D.
Estcourt, T. G. B. Mahon, Visct.
Feilden, W. Manners, Lord J.
Filmer, Sir E. Masterman, J.
Ffolliott, J. Morgan, O.
Forbes, W. Neeld, J.
Forman, T. S. Neeld, J.
Fremantle, rt. hn. Sir T. Neville, R.
Gaskell, J. Milnes Newdegate, C. N.
Gladstone, rt. hn. W. E. Newport, Visct.
Gladstone, Capt. Nicholl, rt. hon. J.
Gordon, hon. Capt. Norreys, Lord
Goring, C. O'Brien, A. S.
Goulburn, rt. hon. H. Oswald, A.
Graham, rt. hn. Sir J. Peel, rt. hon. Sir R.
Greenall, P. Peel, J.
Greene, T. Polhill, F.
Grimsditch, T. Praed, W. T.
Grimston, Visct. Pringle, A.
Hale, R. B. Repton, G. W. J.
Halford, Sir H. Richards, R.
Hamilton, G. A. Round, C. G.
Hamilton, Lord C. Russell, J. D. W.
Harcourt, G. G. Shaw, rt. hon. F.
Harris, hon. Capt. Shirley, E. J.
Henley, J. W. Shirley, E. P.
Herbert, rt. hon. S. Sibthorp, Col.
Holmes, hn. W. A'C. Smith, A.
Hope, G. W. Smith, rt. hn. T. B. C.
Hornby, J. Somerset, Lord G.
Houldsworth, T. Sotheron, T. H. S.
Hussey, A. Spooner, R.
Hussey, T. Stuart, H.
Irton, S. Sutton, hon. H. M.
Jermyn, Earl Talbot, C. R. M.
Jocelyn, Visct. Tennent, J. E.
Jones, Capt. Trench, Sir F. W.
Knight, F. W. Villiers, Visct.
Law, hon. C. E. Waddington, H. S.
Lawson, A. Wellesley, Lord C.
Lefroy, A. Young, J.
Lennox, Lord A. TELLERS.
Liddell, hon. H. T. Inglis, Sir R. H.
Lincoln, Earl of Hope, A.