§ Bill, as amended, considered.
§ MR. WIGRAM moved the insertion of a clause to provide that the (Statutes made by the Commissioners to be laid before the Council of the Senate before the same are submitted to Her Majesty).
§ Clause brought up and read 1°; but was withdrawn.
§ MR. HEYWOOD
proposed to add the following clause:—It shall not be lawful either for the University, or any of the Colleges, or for the Commissioners, to introduce any new religious test, or new religious qualification, relating to any university or college office or emolument, into any statute of such University or of any of such colleges.
§ MR. BOUVERIE
agreed that it was not desirable to introduce new religious tests in these colleges, but he thought the hon. Gentleman's clause would not accomplish the object he had in view.
§ Clause withdrawn.
§ MR. HEYWOOD
then moved the following clause:—From and after the first day of Michaelmas Term, one thousand eight hundred and fifty-six, it shall not be necessary for any person on obtaining any exhibition, scholarship, or other College emolument available for the assistance of an undergraduate student in his academical education, to make or subscribe any declaration, or to take any oath, any law or statute to the contrary notwithstanding.
§ Clause brought up, and read 1°.
§ MR. WIGRAM
thought that the insertion of this clause was unnecessary. Why should they introduce into this Bill what was not required in the case of the Oxford University Bill? Such matters as this clause proposed to deal with ought to be left in the hands of the college authorities—more especially since their proceedings were to be supervised by a Commission.
had heard no reason, political or practical, in favour of the clause, which involved a most essential deviation from the principle Parliament had adopted in the case of the Oxford Bill. There was no ground for supposing that there would be any disposition on the part of the college authorities to prevent the enjoyment of undergraduate endowments by Dissenters. It was true that in the case of Exeter College, Oxford, a test of membership with the Church had been introduced, but that had been done in compliance with the statutes of the college and the will of the founder; but where no such restrictions interposed, no test was required. In reference to Oxford, the intention of Parliament was to leave a discretion to the colleges, acting in concurrence with the Commissioners, and there was no reason why the same trust and confidence should not be placed in the University of Cambridge.
§ MR. J. G. PHILLIMORE
supported the clause, and reminded the right hon. Gentleman that the founder of Exeter College, who, the right hon. Gentleman said, required by his will the test of membership in the Protestant Established Church as a qualification for scholarship, was a Roman Catholic bishop.
§ SIR WILLIAM HEATHCOTE
warned the House against too much interference in this respect, lest they should defeat one of their principal objects—the conversion of fellowships into scholarships. The scholarships in Exeter College, in regard to which the test of church membership had been imposed, had been formed from fellowships, and that test had been rendered necessary by the fact that these fellowships were confined to the clerical profession, which of course implied belonging to the Church.
§ VISCOUNT PALMERSTON
said, he should decline to enter into any discussion with regard to Oxford upon a Bill relating to Cambridge. He should support the clause proposed, because it rested on the broad principle which he thought was now universally admitted, that it was desirable to abolish all unnecessary oaths. Nothing could be more repugnant to common sense and common feeling than to call on people to take oaths when the solemnity of the case did not require so grave a sanction, or to call on men to take oaths without being deeply sensible of the engagements which they took. Now, to call on undergraduates to take oaths about college observances 1742 and rules and the practices of daily life, was, he thought, a course which no one could wish to perpetuate. A young man was called upon to swear that he would conform to and obey all the statutes of the college to which he belonged, and then that was accompanied by a saving clause that if he did not he should submit to the punishment which they imposed. Could anything more unnecessary be conceived than the sanction of an oath in such a case? Then they had been told that they might obstruct reform by legislating on such a subject, and that it was desirable to leave to the colleges and to the Commissioners perfect freedom of action. That might be if the clause was one enjoining something to be done; but he hardly thought it could apply to the case of a clause forbidding something to be done.
said, that the object of the clause was apparently to say that you should take no oath on obtaining any emolument in the course of an undergraduate career. This object was already provided by the 27th Section, which gave the Commissioners, in conjuction with the college authorities, power to abolish all oaths which they thought unnecessary. He was averse to interfering with the freedom and discretion of the colleges.
§ MR. CARDWELL
said, that the 27th Section of the Bill only permitted the college or the Commissioners to give endowments without restriction. This clause went further; it said in the name of Parliament that no such restriction should be imposed. He (Mr. Cardwell) thought that it was extremely desirable to emancipate undergraduates from restrictions of this kind, and did not think that the reasoning of his hon. Friend the Member for the University of Oxford (Sir W. Heath-cote) ought to induce the House to reject this clause.
§ Motion made, and Question put, "That the clause be now read a second time."
§ The House divided:—Ayes 151; Noes 109; Majority 42.
§ Clause read 2°, and added to the Bill.
§ MR. HEYWOOD
then moved the following clause:—From and after the first day of Michaelmas Term, one thousand eight hundred and fifty-six, a declaration to the following effect shall be substituted in lieu of any declaration heretofore subscribed, or any oath heretofore taken, on obtaining a fellowship or any other employment, or a professorship, headship, or any other office in the said University, any law or statute to the contrary notwithstanding:1743'I, A. B., do solemnly and sincerely, in the presence of God, profess, testify, and declare that I will never exercise any power, authority, or influence which I may possess by virtue of the employment of [or office of], to injure or weaken the Protestant Church as it is by law established in England, or to disturb the said Church, or the Bishops and Clergy of the said Church, in the possession of any rights or privileges to which such Church, or the said Bishops and Clergy, are or may be by law entitled.'The said declaration shall be made and subscribed as aforesaid before the Vice Chancellor of the University for the time being, or his deputy.It was his intention to substitute the declaration contained in this clause, and which was the same as that prescribed under the Municipal Reform Act for all municipal officers; but he did not intend to divide on it, because no similar clause had been passed with reference to degrees; and as he had no doubt the subject of oaths at Oxford and Cambridge would come before long again before the House, he would not press the clause.
§ Clause withdrawn.
§ MR. HEYWOOD
then moved the following clause:—It shall be lawful for the governing body of any College, or the major part thereof, at any time before the 1st day of January, 1858, to prepare a form or order of prayers, of a short and comprehensive kind, for the use of the chapel in the said College, and such form or order of prayers shall be submitted to the Commissioners, and if approved by them, may lawfully be used in such Chapel, any law or statute to the contrary notwithstanding.He said he should not press the clause for similar reasons, and especially as it involved a change in the Act of Uniformity.
§ Clause withdrawn.
§ MR. WALPOLE moved in Clause 27 the insertion of the words, "for promoting the interests of religion and learning, and the main designs of founders and donors," previous to the words "it shall be lawful for the governing body of colleges to make alterations of the statutes, and if such colleges fail to do so, that then the Commissioners shall," and so forth. Unless some Amendment of that kind were adopted, neither the Commissioners nor the colleges would have any guide as to the way in which they should exercise the large powers which the Bill entrusted to them, in reference to the remodelling of statutes. Those powers went to the apportioning and redistribution of the revenues of the colleges, to rendering a portion of the college property available for the University at large; to the consolidation of the fellowships and scholarships; the disannexation of colleges from schools, and other powers 1744 of the like kind. Unless, therefore, the Commissioners had something to guide them, the Bill would entrust to a body of men who were entirely unconnected with the colleges the most arbitrary powers for making any alterations they pleased, whatever the original trusts on which the property was given, or whatever the purposes for which that property was designated; consequently they would be violating almost every principle that was recognised either by Parliament or by the laws of the country with reference to property so given for charitable and educational purposes. Believing that to be the case, he would press his Amendment earnestly on the attention of the House, for without it they would bring about that very undesirable result which had already occurred in one or two cases, where threats had been held out of interfering with the administration of charitable property—namely, that of entirely stopping benevolent persons in future from making their gifts for these excellent objects, and so drying up all such sources from the exercise of charity and benevolence, than which a more deplorable consequence could not ensue.
§ Question proposed, "That those words be there inserted."
§ MR. BOUVERIE
said, he had already placed in the hands of the Speaker an Amendment to answer the end aimed at by the right hon. Gentleman—namely, to serve as a guide to the Commissioners in the exercise of their powers. This he sought to effect by the insertion of words declaring that for the promotion of "useful learning and religious education" it should be lawful, &c. Further than this, however, he was not prepared to go, and could not consent to bind the Commissioners invariably to have reference to "the main designs of the founders," whether those designs contemplated the advancement of useful learning and religious education or not. It was desirable that the colleges should be enabled to appropriate a portion of their income to purposes beneficial to the University at large; yet that was an object clearly inconsistent with the main designs of the founders. Moreover, as a power of petitioning the Queen to withhold her approval of any proposed statutes was to be given to the colleges, the adoption of the right hon. Gentleman's Amendment would open the door to a small minority to appeal to the Judicial Committee of Privy Council in any case, and raise 1745 endless controversies as to what really were the intentions of founders 300 or 400 years ago. He trusted, therefore, that the right hon. Gentleman would, on reflection, feel satisfied that the words he (Mr. Bouverie) suggested provided a sufficient remedy for the evil to be apprehended.
§ MR. HEYWOOD
also said, it was difficult to ascertain what the main designs of founders were, and he mentioned the case of the statutes of Eton College, which had been altered so often—erasures and alterations being found in the original charter—that it was hardly possible to know what was the will of the founder. In the case of Trinity College the fellowships were originally intended only for bachelors of divinity, and yet the intention had been systematically set aside, and the fellowships were held by laymen.
§ MR. J. G. PHILLIMORE
thought that the main designs of the founders ought not to be disregarded, and believed it to be a gratuitous assumption to suppose that those designs were necessarily irreconcilable with the promotion of useful learning and religious education. He thought the invasions of property contemplated by this measure ought to be watched with the utmost possible care; and he was prepared to prove that the system which it was proposed to subvert had tended to supply the State with a numerous body of useful and eminent citizens. Some hon. Gentlemen were earnest advocates for the cultivation of physical science; but did they believe that there was any danger in the present day of yielding too much to abstractions, and of disdaining material advantages? Those who looked to past ages, and who saw that such danger at one time existed, might suppose the same danger was still to be apprehended, but in his opinion the danger against which they had now to contend was that of becoming too material.
§ MR. GRANVILLE VERNON
agreed with the hon. Member who had just spoken, and said that at a meeting the day before, of gentlemen educated at Westminster School, to found a monument to those officers who had been educated there who fell in the Crimea, there was a strong feeling in favour of founding an exhibition at a university connected with the school. But this difficulty was felt, that they were afraid that at some future time, some one might say that the exhibition which was intended as a, memorial for 1746 heroes connected with the school ought to be turned to some other purpose.
§ SIR WILLIAM HEATHCOTE
suggested, that after the words proposed by the right hon. Gentleman (Mr. Walpole), "for promoting the interests of religion and learning, and the main designs of founders and donors," the following words should be inserted:—"So far as they are consistent with such interests." That addition would, he thought, remove the objections which had been taken to the Amendment of his right hon. Friend.
§ VISCOUNT PALMERSTON
observed, that hon. Gentlemen opposite seemed to forget that it was contemplated that a portion of the endowments should be transferred from college to University purposes, and it was perfectly clear that in such cases the main design of the founders must be departed from. The Amendment of the right hon. Gentleman would, therefore, prevent an arrangement which, as far as he was informed, everybody admitted to be desirable. The Amendment was also liable to the objection that it would render necessary an inquiry as to the main designs of founders, which it would frequently be very difficult accurately to determine; and he thought it might be fairly presumed that the main design of all founders must have been the promotion of useful learning and religious education. He would, however, go a step further, and say that where it appeared that the main designs of founders, some 200 or 300 years ago, had not been directly for the promotion of useful learning and religious education, Parliament was entitled to set those designs aside. The hon. and learned Member for Leominster (Mr. J. G. Phillimore) had abjured them not to violate those feelings which connected the present with the past, and which led persons who derived advantages from educational endowments to look back with respect and veneration to those by whom such endowments had been established; but surely that feeling of veneration would be increased in proportion to the more extended usefulness of the endowments. He hoped, therefore, that his right hon. Friend would not press his Amendment, which would prevent the accomplishment of one of the objects of the Bill, which every one had agreed should be included in it.
said, his noble Friend who had just spoken had stated the case very fairly. The noble Lord 1747 intimated, however, that in all cases, unless there was some indication to the contrary, the main design of founders must be considered the absolute and exclusive appropriation of the endowments to the purposes of colleges, and the withholding that property from any contribution to the purposes of the University at large. There were not many things in which he could compete with his noble Friend; but with all respect for his noble Friend, he (Mr. Gladstone) might say he believed he had spent many more hours in reading the statutes of colleges than the noble Lord could have done, and he thought the noble Lord formed an exceedingly unjust idea of the main designs of founders. Undoubtedly the founders of these colleges were the very flower of the age in which they lived, whose views were directed forward, and whoso great desire was to meet the emergencies of society as they might rise to the surface. As far as he could judge, it appeared to him a most rational belief that, under the present circumstances of colleges, considering the vast increase which had taken place in their property and the great influence they exercised in the government of the University, the founders would at once have recognised the perfect equity of contributions from the property of colleges to the University, in return for the advantages derived by the colleges from the University. The Oxford Act contemplated as the great object in view the promotion of religion and learning; but it also made a specific, although not a paramount reference to the main designs of founders. The House then admitted the principle that they were not to obstruct the intention of gifts devoted to the promotion of religion and learning, but only to modify the particular form in which those endowments were to be applied. There were some founders whose views were directed to the study of theology; others showed more anxiety to promote the study of ancient learning or natural science; while others, again, chose to place their foundations in connection with particular schools. Those founders were men who represented the character of their age and nation, and whose memory deserved to be held in reverence; and the indications of their peculiar inclinations should be respected, unless, from the alteration of time and circumstances, the carrying out of their views would interfere with the promotion of religion and learning. The interests of religion 1748 and learning were held out as the great end to be kept in view, but in so far as they did not interfere with the interests of religion and learning the main objects of the founder were to be respected. It was impossible to put things on a basis more just and rational than this; and therefore he hoped the Amendment of his right hon. Friend (Mr. Walpole) would commend itself, if not to the favour of the noble Lord, at least to the approbation of the House.
§ MR. WIGRAM
thought it must be evident to everybody that Gentlemen on the Opposition side of the House were doing everything in their power to commend the views they entertained on this point to the approval of the Government, as the object they aimed at had been offered in various shapes. He hoped that, whatever might be the form of words used, the spirit of the right hon. Gentleman's Amendment would be accepted by the House. There was one foundation in King's College which was for the promotion of medical science, and there was Bell's foundation, which was confined to the sons of clergymen, and the object of which was to promote learning and science among clergymen. To divert such foundations from the main designs of the founder would be little better than sacrilege.
THE CHANCELLOR OF THE EXCHEQUER
said, that though he had for a short time been a Member of the Oxford University Commission, he would not presume to compete with the right hon. Gentleman (Mr. Gladstone) in his knowledge of the statutes of the colleges; but he thought he had somewhat mistaken the effect of the noble Lord's remarks. His noble Friend said that, if they were to be limited in reforming the colleges by the main design of the founders, there would, in the first place, be a difficulty in determining what that main design was; and he went on to say, in the second place, that these founders were founders of colleges, and that their entire design as to each of these colleges must have been limited to the college itself—that though the original design was to promote religion and learning, yet the principal design was the foundation of a college; and his noble Friend argued that if the endowment was diverted from the college to the University admitted to be a good object—it could scarcely be said that this was carrying into effect the main design of the founders. Such was the substance of the view expressed by his noble Friend. Now, provided 1749 it were clearly understood that there was no wish to tie the construction of the statutes to the main design of the founder, considered as a college founder, but only that the general design he had in view—viz., the promotion of religion and learning, was to be considered, then there could he no objection to the Amendment of the right hon. and learned Gentleman. He proposed that some such words as the following should be adopted—viz.,"In order to promote useful learning and religious education in the colleges and University, and the main design of the founders and donors, so far as consistent with those purposes."
§ Amendment by leave withdrawn.
§ Clause, as amended by the CHANCELLOR of the EXCHEQUER, agreed to.
§ In the same clause,
§ MR. WIGRAM
proposed to insert the words "or of Jesus College," which would have the effect of retaining the right of nominating the head of the College in the hands of the existing patrons. He only asked that the same exemption should be extended to Jesus College that was given by the Bill to Magdalen College, and he might observe that it was universally admitted that the patronage of Jesus College had been uniformly exercised in a beneficial manner.
§ MR. BOUVERIE
admitted that the patronage had always been exercised with a due regard to the interests of the college; but the question was whether it should or should not be left to the governing body of the college to say whether the present was the right way of appointing the head, and whether some other way might not be advantageously resorted to.
regretted that the right hon. Gentleman had not applied the principle of free competition to Jesus College, so as to leave the field of selection as wide as at present. He trusted that he would even yet consent to the Amendment.
§ Question put, "That those words be there inserted."
§ The House divided:—Ayes 61; Noes 130: Majority 69.
§ Clause agreed to.
§ On Clause 44 (No person to be required on matriculating, or taking any degree in arts, law, medicine, or music, to take any oath or to make any declaration whatever.)
§ MR. WIGRAM moved to leave out 1750 "any," and insert "the;" and after "degree," to insert "of bachelor;" the effect of the Amendment being to exclude all persons at Cambridge from taking any degree other than that of B.A. without a subscription to a religious test. He said he should not object to the clause if it carried the test at Cambridge to the same extent as at Oxford. There a B.A degree might be obtained without subscription to any religious test whatever; it was now proposed that persons at Cambridge should be admitted to the M.A. degree in the same way as they were admitted to the B.A. degree. He would explain the principle on which he acted in opposing any extension of the provisions of this Bill beyond those which had been inserted in the Oxford Bill. The question was one of the most important character—if they were to have in this country an Established Church they must have places of education appropriated exclusively to the Church of England in which those who were intended for the ministry in the Church might be brought up. This clause, as it stood, would abolish education of an exclusive Church of England character altogether. He thought the reasonable course would be to keep the two Universities upon the same footing entirely; and as they had the rule established at Oxford, to preserve a similar rule at Cambridge also.
§ MR. BOUVERIE
said, this was a very important clause; but he might state to the House that this was precisely the form in which it had come down from the House of Lords last year. At present, no test whatever was required for matriculation at Cambridge. Upon taking the B.A. degree, it was necessary to take the academical oath of obedience to the statutes, and to subscribe a declaration that the candidate was a bonâ fide member of the Church of England. But, upon taking the M.A. degree, persons were required to sign the 36 canons of 1608, whereby they declared that they were bonâ fide members of the Church of England, that they adhered to the Articles of that Church, and that they acknowledged the supremacy of Her Majesty in matters ecclesiastical. The intention of the clause was that for the taking of any degree, except a theological degree, no oath or declaration whatever should be necessary. The hon. and learned Member (Mr. Wigram) had proposed to limit the change to Bachelors of Arts. He would allow them to take a bachelor's degree without any test, but not 1751 an M.A. degree or any degree in divinity, music, or medicine. But what he (Mr. Bouverie) wanted to know was, upon what principle the hon. and learned Member could make that limitation? As it was, none but doctors of law at Oxford and Cambridge could practise in the ecclesiastical courts; and he should like to know what connection there was between practising in the courts at Doctors' Commons and being a member of the Church of England; why a Protestant Dissenter or a Roman Catholic should not be as good an advocate as a member of the Church? Now, as regarded the degrees which were higher than that of B.A., they were merely signs of academical rank. These further degrees were merely evidence of a man's having received a good education, that he was a cultivated man, and as such they ought to be open to every member of the community. The hon. Member (Mr. Heywood) wished by this clause to carry the admission to Cambridge degrees further than at Oxford; but there were many men whom the hon. and learned Gentleman opposite would allow to take a B.A. degree, but whom he would prevent from proceeding in either music or medicine. He (Mr. Bouverie) thought that if they were to give a University education at all, it ought to be open to all classes of the community.
§ MR. ROUNDELL PALMER
conceived that the arguments of the right hon. Gentleman were fallacious and required to be answered. The right hon. Gentleman asked what reason there was for drawing a distinction between the degree of B.A. and the higher degrees. Now, one reason was, that the degree of B.A. did not entitle any one to take any share in the government of the University, while hitherto the higher degrees did so. The right, hon. Gentleman admitted that the government of the Universities should only be placed in the hands of Members of the Church of England; but if he wished to adopt one course which more than another would leave the matter unsettled, that course was to introduce for the first time the distinction between governing and non-governing masters of arts. The degree of M.A. was not founded upon any examination, but was merely a mark of academical rank; and to draw a distinction between persons holding that degree would give rise to confusion. The right hon. Gentleman complained that the valuable practice of Doctors' Commons, by being confined to doctors of law, was, by the present system, 1752 placed beyond the reach of Roman Catholics or Protestant Dissenters; but that argument appeared to him to carry little weight, because Doctors' Commons was about to be abolished; and even if some delay took place, it did not appear to him very absurd to say that the business of the ecclesiastical courts of the Church of England should be conducted by persons who were best acquainted with the rules of that Church. As regarded doctors of medicine, the argument of the right hon. Gentleman might be of great force if that degree could not be conferred anywhere but at Cambridge; but when it was conferred at various other Universities, it lost all the weight which it might otherwise possess. The effect of the present Bill would be, for the first time, to divide the higher degrees, which were only a symbol of academical rank, into two classes, which would always be ranged against each other, and which would keep up a perpetual dispute. For his part, he did not see why the rule which had been laid down in the case of Oxford should not be adhered to, of admitting all persons to the degree of B.A., but of not going beyond that grade. If a different principle were established with regard to Cambridge, the result would be the renewal of agitation upon the question at Oxford. The step further was wholly unnecessary, and he could not imagine how it could prove useful for any purpose whatever.
§ MR. MILNER GIBSON
said, he hoped his right hon. Friend (Mr. Bouverie) would keep the University of Cambridge in the same position in advance of Oxford as it always occupied—a position of a more enlightened and liberal character. He remembered a time when boys were not admitted to the Universities without subscribing to theological propositions which had puzzled the greatest divines. Cambridge, however, had broken through such an absurdity, and admitted students without such tests, while Oxford persisted in maintaining them; but still she would not confer the higher degrees without them. But if a person was not to be admitted to an M.A., an M.D., or an LL.D. degree at Cambridge without submitting to a religious test, he (Mr. M. Gibson) would be glad to know what that test was to be. He himself was a B.A. of Cambridge, and was not an M.A.; and he, and those in the same position as himself, wished to be informed what was the theological proposition they were to be compelled to subscribe 1753 to in order to take an M.A. degree. As a member of the Church of England, he (Mr. M. Gibson) said distinctly, he considered it a very offensive thing to be continually requiring persons in secular professions to subscribe to debateable theological propositions.
said, that the question really was, whether the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge were for the future to be Universities immediately connected with the Church of England or not? The right hon. Gentleman (Mr. M. Gibson) had said that it was desirable that a distinction should be kept up between Oxford and Cambridge; and, certainly, if they were to keep up that distinction, it would not be necessary that they should alter the Cambridge Bill as it stood at present. It was said that Cambridge ought to be in advance of Oxford. He (Mr. Walpole) was a great admirer of the liberality of Cambridge, and he thought it had been attended with great benefits; but this keeping a little in advance of Oxford had this disadvantage—it would induce hon. Members to say, "Now let us do a little something for Oxford," which would lead to a little more—then, again, following Oxford, the House would be asked to grant Cambridge a little further latitude; and thus the two Universities would be running a race as to which should be most liberal. Unless they intended to open the door to great alterations, they had better say that the same rule should apply to the two Universities; and he (Mr. Walpole) was ready to adhere to that which had been laid down for Oxford.
§ VISCOUNT PALMERSTON
said, he had a great respect for the University of Oxford, and he admitted that Cambridge and Oxford were sister Universities, but he objected to their being looked upon as Siamese twins, and to its being said that whatever was done by one should be done by the other also. He repudiated the argument that any particular proposition which had been placed in the Oxford Bill should therefore be placed in the Cambridge Bill; and, for his part, he had no fear of the result of the race referred to by the right hon. Gentleman. The right hon. Gentleman had stated that the Universities were connected with the Established Church. Well, he would admit that such was the case; but still the exclusive object of the Universities was not to educate persons for holy orders. If such were their sole purpose, then he would admit that it might be right to enact that 1754 no one should take any degree, or derive any advantage from the Universities, who was not qualified to perform the functions for which his education had destined him; but, although in a great degree connected with the Established Church, the education of clergymen was not the only object for which the Universities were established; and, in order to give full effect to the working of those educational institutions, the laity ought to be freely admitted to those seats of learning, and no unnecessary obstacle should be placed in the way of those who wished to partake of their advantages. It was argued, however, by the right hon. Gentleman that by conferring the higher degrees on the laity you admitted to a share in the government of the University persons who were not members of the Church of England; that was really not so. The present Bill did not admit any one who was not a member of the Church of England to any share in the government of the University. Well, then it might be said, what would be the value of conferring the degree of M.A. if it did not confer a share in the government of the University? But were there not hundreds of Masters of Arts whose names were not on the books, but who retained the degree as an honourable distinction, and without any desire to share in the government of the University?—and could it be said that it was no gratification to a man who had passed honourably through a course of education to obtain a high degree from the University where he had studied? It was said that he might go to the London University, to Durham, or to other parts of the kingdom, and might get his degree there; but was that the same thing to a person who was attached to Cambridge, and who valued his degree, not simply for the few letters which he was then enabled to add to his name, but, because it was an honorary record of a distinction acquired by him in the University where he had received his education, and with which all his early associations were mixed up? It was a mockery in such a case to tell a man that he might go elsewhere, but that he should not receive this degree in the University in which he had been educated. There was no ground for this restriction, even as regarded an honorary degree; but there were degrees which conferred solid advantages to persons in the professions to which they might afterwards devote themselves, and he was really quite at a loss to understand why it should be necessary that 1755 a Doctor in Medicine, or a Doctor in Law, or a Doctor in Music, should be compelled to be a member of the Church of England. So to employ these tests tended, he thought, to cast ridicule upon things which were of themselves worthy of respect. It should be remembered that the restriction now proposed was not inserted in the House of Lords. In the House of Commons, hon. Gentlemen were apt sometimes to think that they were more disposed to go forward in the work of improvement than noble Lords in another place. He hoped they would not on this occasion set an example of the opposite kind, but would allow the Bill to stand as it had come down to them from the other House.
§ Question put, "That the word 'any' stand part of the Bill."
§ The House divided:—Ayes 118: Noes 41: Majority 77.
§ MR. HEYWOOD
proposed to leave out the words "entitle him to be or to become a member of the Senate, or," the effect of which would be to allow persons who had qualified themselves as Masters of Arts to take their seats in the Senate, and to vote for Members of Parliament. Unless this Amendment were adopted, many members of the University would virtually stand in the same position as one of the Members for the City of London did with regard to the House. They would have seats provided for them below the bar of the Senate, and they would be entitled to attend and listen to the proceedings, but they would not be allowed to take any part in them, or to vote for Members to represent the University in Parliament. An objection was taken to this proposal—namely, that it would allow a Dissenter to become a member of the governing body of the University. Now, he was of opinion that it would be very much for the benefit of the University that there should be in the Senate a moderate sprinkling of persons of other religious denominations besides the Church of England. He was not aware that there was any valid objection to this proposition, except that, if carried, it would render the corporation of the University less exclusive, but in that respect it would only be following the general course of the nation.
§ MR. BOUVERIE
said, the effect of the hon. Gentleman's Amendment would be, to confer upon Dissenters who took the higher degrees a right of interference in the affairs of the University and a vote for Members of Parliament. If he (Mr. Bouverie) 1756 had the sole power of decision upon the point, he might not see any abstract objection to the proposition; but he feared that it would mar the usefulness of the Bill by exciting a feeling of hostility and alarm in the minds of those whose co-operation was necessary for the efficient working of the measure. It must not be forgotten that there was a strong connection between the Church of England and the Universities, find a proposal to allow Dissenters to interfere in fixing the theological studies to be pursued in those Universities would excite great alarm in the minds of many persons. He opposed the Amendment, believing that it would tend to impair the practical usefulness of the Bill.
§ MR. I. BUTT
explained his reasons for supporting the Amendment. He could see no reason why, if Dissenters were admitted to the higher degree, they should not be permitted to become members of the convocation of the University. The Church of England had too strong a hold upon the Universities, to make it at all likely, or probable, that she could ever be ousted by the Dissenters.
§ Question put "That the words proposed to be left out, stand part of the Bill."
§ The House divided:—Ayes 60; Noes 85: Majority 25.
|List of the AYES.|
|Acland, Sir T. D.||Knox, hon. W. S.|
|Alexander, J.||Lewis, rt. hon. Sir G. C.|
|Archdall, Capt. M.||Lockhart, W.|
|Baring, rt. hn. Sir F. T.||Malins, R.|
|Barrow, W. H.||Massey, W. N.|
|Bentinck, G. W. P.||Michell, W.|
|Blackburn, P.||Montgomery, H. L.|
|Bouverie, rt. hon. E. P.||Montgomery, Sir G.|
|Bramley-Moore, J.||Mowbray, J. R.|
|Bruce, Major C.||Naas, Lord|
|Buck, Col.||Osborne, R.|
|Bunbury, W. B. M'C.||Palmer, R.|
|Burrowes, R.||Palmerston, Visct.|
|Chambers, M.||Rust, J.|
|Cole, hon. H. A.||Sawle, C. B. G.|
|Coote, Sir C. H.||Smith, Sir W.|
|Davies, J. L.||Smith, W. M.|
|Davison, R.||Smollett, A.|
|Drumlanrig, Visct.||Spooner, R.|
|Duncombe, hon. W. E.||Stewart, Sir R. M. R. S.|
|Dunne, Col.||Sutton, J. H. M.|
|FitzGerald, J. D.||Walpole, rt. hon. S. H.|
|FitzRoy, rt. hon. H.||Warren, S.|
|George, J.||Wigram, L. T.|
|Gordon, hon. A.||Wilson, J.|
|Grey, rt. hon. Sir G.||Wood, rt. hon. Sir C.|
|Guinness, R. S.||Woodd, B. T.|
|Gwyn, H.||Wynne, rt. hon. J.|
|Hamilton, G. A.|
|Heathcote, Sir W.||TELLERS.|
|Herbert, H. A.||Hayter, rt. hon. W. G.|
|Horsman, rt. hon. E.||Mulgrave, Earl of|
|List of the NOES.|
|Adair, Colonel||Maguire, J. F.|
|Anderson, Sir J.||Miall, E.|
|Barnes, T.||Milligan, R.|
|Baxter, W. E.||Milner, Sir W. M. E.|
|Beaumont, W. B.||Monck, Visct.|
|Bell, J.||Murrough, J. P.|
|Berkeley, F. W. F.||Napier, Sir C.|
|Black, A.||Norreys, Sir D. J.|
|Bland, L. H.||North, F.|
|Bonham-Carter, J.||O'Brien, P.|
|Bowyer, G.||O'Brien, J.|
|Brady, J.||O'Connell, Capt. J.|
|Brotherton, J.||O'Flaherty, A.|
|Butler, C. S.||Pechell, Sir G. B.|
|Butt, I.||Pellatt, A.|
|Cheetham, J.||Pigott, F.|
|Cockburn, Sir A. J. E.||Price, W. P.|
|Collier, R. P.||Ricardo, S.|
|Cowan, C.||Rice, E. R.|
|Craufurd, E. H. J.||Ridley, G.|
|Deasy, R.||Robartes, T. J. A.|
|Dillwyn, L. L.||Russell, F. C. H.|
|Duncan, G.||Scobell, Capt.|
|Dunlop, A. M.||Shee, W.|
|Esmonde, J.||Smith, J. B.|
|Fenwick, H.||Somerville, r. h. Sir W. M.|
|Ferguson, Sir R.||Strickland, Sir G.|
|Ferguson, J.||Strutt, rt. hon. E.|
|Forster, C.||Thompson, G.|
|Fortescue, C. S.||Thornely, T.|
|Freestun, Col.||Tite, W.|
|French, Col.||Vernon, G. E. H.|
|Gaskell, J. M.||Walmsley, Sir J.|
|Gibson, rt. hon. T. M.||Warner, E.|
|Goderich, Visc.||Watson, W. H.|
|Hadfield, G.||Whatman, J.|
|Hastie, Archibald||Wilkinson, W. A.|
|Higgins, Col. O.||Willcox, B. M'G.|
|Ingram, H.||Williams, W.|
|Jackson, W.||Winnington, Sir T. E.|
|Kennedy, T.||Wise, J. A.|
|Langton, H. G.||TELLERS.|
|Lee, W.||Hey wood, J.|
|Mackie, J.||Clay, Sir W.|
§ MR. HEYWOOD
then proposed to add certain words, in order that persons not members of the Church of England should be allowed to fill certain secular offices connected with the University. He did not object to the professors of divinity being required to sign the Thirty-nine Articles, but could see no reason why other professorships, such as that of anatomy, should not be open to all persons who were qualified for the duties. He had particular reference to the case of masters of grammar schools who were required to be Masters of Arts, and that requirement, as the clause stood, would confine those offices to members of the Church of England. He, therefore, moved to insert after "qualifications" the words—"and the duties of which office are ecclesiastical, and limited to the inculcation of the doctrinal formularies 1758 of the United Church of England and Ireland."
§ Question proposed, "That those words be there inserted."
§ MR. BOUVERIE
said, the object of the proviso at the end of the clause was, that no Dissenter should be appointed to any office which had heretofore always been held by a member of the Church of England. As to the secular offices spoken of by the hon. Gentleman, he (Mr. Bouverie) apprehended there were no such things. The hon. Gentleman might obtain his object by moving the omission of the proviso, although it was to be hoped that he would not deem it necessary to persist upon this point. In the case of the grammar schools where the masters were required to be Masters of Arts, it could not be doubted that the object of that requirement was to render it necessary for the master to be of the particular religious persuasion of the founders of the schools. The Amendment proposed would render that just and proper provision completely nugatory, and he hoped would not be pressed,
§ MR. I. BUTT
thought the Amendment would have an unfair operation. It was true they had now decided to make the higher degrees accessible to all persons, but in those cases where the qualification for holding office was the degree of Master of Arts, to that requirement must also be added membership of the Church of England, which was a necessary qualification for that degree at the time when those offices were established.
§ MR. HEYWOOD
was willing not to press the Amendment at the present moment, being convinced that in a year or two the House would be obliged to adopt his views.
§ Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.
§ Bill to be read 3a*, on Monday next.