§ Order for Committee read.
§ Motion made, and Question proposed, "That Mr. Speaker do now leave the Chair."
said, he had placed on the Paper a Notice of Amendment, 768 not only with a view of taking the sense of the House upon it if his friends should desire it, but in order that there might be some discussion on the principle of this important Bill. He was quite aware that his hon. and learned Friend (the Solicitor General), who was for the time the promoter of this measure, might say, as he said before, that no discussion was necessary, and that discussion of it was mere waste of time. But the discussion last year was defective on two very material points. At that time neither the House nor the country had realized the principle of disestablishment, then enunciated for the first time. They did not know how far the right hon. Gentleman proposed to go, nor did they then foresee that this Session he would occupy the Treasury Bench, surrounded by Members of a Cabinet, some of whom had for many years been most determined opponents of all establishments. Again, the debate of last year had another peculiar feature—it was a proposition, a curriculum so to speak, for the election contest then about to ensue in order that Radical candidates might denounce their opponents, and every effort was made by Members opposite to misrepresent the action of the Conservative party on this question, and to prejudice the public mind unfavourably with regard to it. In proof of that assertion he would refer to a speech made by the hon. Member for Stoke-upon-Trent (Mr. Beresford Hope), which appeared next day in the first person in a morning journal devoted to ultra-Liberal politics, and went far and wide through the land. And what was the climax of that speech? It was that the hon. Gentleman had gone into a smoking - room and seen half-a-dozen young gentlemen playing at billiards who owned as many millions of property, but could not get a decent education because they were sons of Dissenters. Although such a statement might do very well for an article in the Morning Star and for an ignorant class of electors such as seemed to exist at Stoke-upon-Trent—it was utterly without foundation as every reasonable being must know. Members on that (the Opposition) side of the House most strongly repudiated the attempts made to charge them with injustice to Dissenters. He had always maintained in that House and elsewhere that the Universities were national institutions, and that the Dis- 769 senters should be admitted without tests; that they should be allowed not only to take degrees, but also to vote as members of Convocation or members of the Senate, and be permitted to establish their own Colleges or Halls if they thought fit to found such institutions. Holding those opinions he could not see how Dissenters could in justice or equity claim to form part of the Governing Bodies of Church of England Colleges. It is time there was a great distinction between property acquired by the Colleges before the Reformation and property acquired after; but it must be remembered that the pre-Reformation endowments were held exactly by the same title as Church property generally throughout the country, and the same principle must apply to both—many Nonconformists, no doubt, were opposed to all endowments—but as regarded Roman Catholics, considering that if there was anybody which had ever struggled to retain every scrap of property it was the Roman Catholic Church, he could not see how they could support this Bill. Some time last year there appeared in the Tablet, which he was informed was the principal organ of the Roman Catholics of this country, an article which said that when they came to the question of principle it was impossible for any Roman Catholic to vote for the Bill; but it must be remembered that the Church of England did not teach truth, and therefore Roman Catholic Members were enabled to support it. But, as the question of denominational education abroad was now occupying the attention of those who were most attached to the principles of the Church of Rome, he hoped Roman Catholic Members would pause before they supported a Bill which was an abnegation of the principles most dear to their Church. By the policy pursued towards the Irish Church he (Mr. Bentinck) insisted that the issue on this question was now altogether changed from that of last year, and it was absolutely necessary before this Bill passed that the House should receive from Her Majesty's Government some enunciation of the principles upon which they were about to proceed with regard to the Church of England. He viewed with great regret the state of the Treasury Bench, without one of the responsible Ministers of the Crown in his place— the result, no doubt, of those disastrous 770 Morning Sittings when Ministers could not be in two places at once. The Government should declare their views and submit a measure as a final settlement. If they proposed a scheme leaving the government of the Church Colleges in the hands of the Church, and establishing a certain number of Fellowships, in the nature of Exhibitions which might be held by individuals who were not members of the Church of England, it would meet with no objection from the Opposition side of the House, but what they objected to were "little tinkering measures"—a favourite expression of the right hon. Member for Birmingham— which were merely instalments of something else. His hon. and learned Friend had talked to them about not hoisting the flag of "No Surrender!" which was sure to be torn down. With a majority of 115 at his back, it was easy for his hon. and learned Friend to say that. And now they were told to be wise in time. But the ultra-Dissenters, upon whom his hon. and learned Friend depended for his election at Exeter, would be satisfied with nothing less than the destruction of the Church of England; and a great measure of that kind lay behind, and would make its appearance when this little measure was got rid of. If there was one individual who ought to be in his place on this occasion it was the Prime Minister. He did not suppose the right hon. Gentleman would refer him to his past career; for if there was one question upon which the right hon. Gentleman had been more erratic than another, it was this University question. The last speech he delivered on this subject was spoken on the 14th of June, 1865. The right hon. Gentleman said that there were then two real questions before the House. The first being whether University education could be separated from the spirit of a distinct and definite religion; and the second being whether the recognition of religion was necessary to enable the University to perform its work as part of the discipline of life. In answering these questions the right hon. Gentleman said—I confess for myself that, apart from all distinctions between Churchmen and Dissenters, I am convinced of the soundness and wisdom, under the circumstances of this country, of that which is called the denominational system. I mean that we should not endeavour to tamper with the features and principles either of the Established or any other religion. I would recognize the same 771 sacredness against political invasion in the one case as in the other. To maintain a definite religious teaching is the principle on which we have proceeded in the whole of our recent and most important administrative and legislative Acts with regard to primary and popular education. And that is a principle to which I think we ought to adhere in our Universities as well as in our grammar schools."—[3 Hansard, clxxx. 226–7.]Now, in the autumn of 1866, a very remarkable criticism was delivered on this speech by no less a person than his hon. Friend the Member for Elgin (Mr. Grant Duff), who must be of high authority, because from a crowd of aspirants he was selected by the right hon. Gentleman to fill the responsible post of Under Secretary for India. It would be well known to readers of the public prints, that it was the annual custom of the present Indian Under Secretary, during the dead season of the year to deliver, at some remote spot in Scotland, a speech, or rather oration, to his breech-less constituents upon the topics of the day. These orations had certainly not the merit of brevity, and he was not going to ask the House to follow him through the oration of 1866; but he would nevertheless venture to read one most relevant passage where his hon. Friend, after stating that the right hon. Gentleman had fired a revolver in the faces of his partizans, proceeded as follows:—The only mistake in tactics was that truly astounding speech which he made on the Oxford Tests Bill, and which put the Liberal party in the absurd position of gaining its one great victory in this unhappy Session at once over its enemies and its commander-in-chief. I had, perhaps, more reason than anyone to feel annoyance at his gratuitous onslaught upon his best friends; but, when the first vexation was over, I forgot it in reflecting on the amusing glimpse which it affords into the state of mind of this highly-gifted man. Just at this stage of his career the neophyte leader of the Liberals is a curious study. What he hates most, hates with concentrated malignity, is that thorough - going Liberalism which extends to every department of thought; and he hates it because he has a suspicion that the line upon which he has been moving when produced leads to that end. He has a horrible foreboding that time is on the side of those politicians who, when he started in public life, were at the opposite pole of the political sphere, against whom all the strength of his youth and of his manhood were directed. Read his early speeches; study his early books. He has travelled far since then, and may well murmur at that destiny which may lead him, like the Sicambrian of old, to burn what he adores, and to adore what he has burnt.In May, 1867, when the Bill was read a second time, the right hon. Gentle- 772 man was found voting with the minority, but in 1868 — and the occurrence exhibited most strikingly the effects of time upon great minds—the right hon. Gentleman rushed into the House just before the division was taken, and went into the Lobby with the hon. and learned Gentleman. When such a great change had come over the policy of the right hon. Gentleman in so short a time, he at least should be in his place to give some explanation of the reasons which had led to that change. He was much afraid that the time would come when the Church of England would be offered up in the same way as the Irish Church was being offered up; and, therefore, he was anxious to know how far the Government intended to proceed in that direction at the present moment. He desired to see the Dissenters and the Roman Catholics confirmed in the indisputable possession of their property, but he claimed that the same principles should be applied to the Church of England, which was that of the large majority of the intelligence of this nation. Believing then this to be a most dishonest measure; that, while his hon. and learned Friend declared the Bill was permissive and would practically be inoperative, the majority of the Members opposite regarded it in a different light, and as a lever to overthrow the English Establishment, he begged to move that the House resolve itself into the said Committee upon the Bill on that day three months.
To leave out from the word "That" to the end of the Question, in order to add the words "this House will, upon this day three months, resolve itself into the said Committee,"—(Mr. Bentinck,)
§ Question proposed, "That the words proposed to be left out stand part of the Question."
If I venture to trespass on the time of the House, it is because on this question I entertain very strong opinions, and my opinions not only differ diametrically from those of the hon. Gentleman who has just sat down (Mr. Bentinck), but also from those held by many supporters of the 773 Bill. It appears to me, Sir, that all the arguments that have been addressed to the House on this subject, both on former occasions and during the present Session, have proceeded on the supposition that the University system is nearly perfect. Hon. Gentlemen opposite have expressed their fears lest the influx of a large body of students unconnected with the Church of England should impair the present excellent system; while ton. Gentlemen on this side have endeavoured to calm those fears. Sir, if I wish to see this measure passed into law, I am almost afraid to say that it is precisely because of what I conceive to be the gross inefficiency of the present system, and because my only hope of its amendment lies in the infusion of fresh blood. Hon. Members look back on the Universities through a mist of pleasant recollections and associations which, to a great extent, blinds their eyes to the real state of the case. But I am only expressing the opinion of a great many University men when I say that not only do those Universities with a maximum of endowments educate a minimum number of the young men of the nation, but to those few young men they afford a minimum of education at a maximum of expense. We used to hear the Universities spoken of as "places of sound learning and religious education." Our belief is that the learning is not very sound, and that the religion is not very learned. Sir, I have no wish to disparage or depreciate the good which a young man receives from his residence at a University. He can hardly fail to acquire, in greater or less degree, that most subtle but most valuable quality which may, perhaps, best be termed knowledge of the world. But this benefit is entirely extraneous, entirely extra-academical; he obtains it from mixing in society with his contemporaries, and not in any sense from the University system. So far as more solid acquirements are concerned the University and Colleges leave him to his own resources; he is obliged to hire for himself a tutor to conduct his studies; and for all practical purposes, he might every bit as well prepare for the periodical examinations in London or Paris, as at Oxford or Cambridge. Now, Sir, let us consider the religious teaching on which the hon. and learned Member for Richmond sets such store, and which he 774 would so jealously guard. What does it amount to? I do not wish to detain the House, but I would remind hon. Gentlemen who have been at a University, and would inform other hon. Members what it is. I will take the largest and most illustrious College at either University. What training in religion does an undergraduate there receive? There is compulsory attendance at chapel. Now, Sir, this a matter of discipline—sometimes even of penal discipline—and I venture to think the House will not attach much importance to the influence of such attendance on the religious character of a young man under these circumstances. Then he is examined in the course of his residence on two or three Gospels or other parts of the New Testament; but these are, very properly, treated as pieces of classical literature, just as a Greek play would be, and not with regard to dogmatic teaching, or moral training. He has also to pass an examination in Butler's Analogy, Butler's Three Sermons, and—if that work be dignified with the title of religious — on Dr. Whewell's Elements of Morality. But the most important piece of this education—the piéce de resistance of this theological banquet — is Dr. Paley's Evidences of Christianity, a work undoubtedly of the highest merit, and of great historical interest; but its interest is mainly historical, and it is hardly suited to be used as a text-book. And as to the value of this as an element in religious education I may say that a week or two ago I met in the Library of this House, two Members of the House who have not very long ago left the University. They asked me if I could remember a certain argument of Paley's; and, in order at once to suggest to my memory, and to refresh their own, they repeated a fragment of a line of wretched jargon, a piece of memoria technica which is used for the purpose of getting up this subject, and which was probably all that remained to them of Dr. Paley's work. Now, Sir, even supposing—which many may doubt—that it is advisable to supplement at the University the religious training which is better received at home, and at an earlier period of life, I venture to submit that this so-called "religious education" has no substantial value. And yet it is to secure the maintenance of this system that the hon. 775 and learned Member for Richmond wishes to clog the clauses of the Bill with all sorts of conditions. I humbly submit that the hon. and learned Gentleman, to whose motives we all so readily defer—is fighting for a shadow—that he has really gone to war for an idea. Sir, I think we are very far wrong if we look on this as a mere question of Churchman and Dissenter. For my part, I have no wish to take from the Church of England anything which rightfully belongs to her; nor, on the other hand, have I any sympathy with the motives of those —and there are not a few—who hope, under the provisions of this Bill, to see a very select number of the Dissenting youth brought up to the Universities, there to be fascinated by the influence of the Church of England, and, as it were, inveigled into her fold. Sir, I think such considerations should not be taken into account by this House. This is not, I say, a sectarian question, it is a national question; it is not a question of aggrandizing or denuding any individual sect, it is a question of raising the efficiency of the Universities as national instruments of education; and I firmly believe that the infusion of new blood, which will result from the adoption of this policy, will speedily bring their teaching organization into greater harmony with the times. Above all, it is not that we wish to have what may be called a scramble for the endowments. I am inclined to think that such overgrown endowments are positively pernicious in their effect; that they create apathy and ineffectiveness, so that sometimes the object for which institutions exist is altogether missed. The Oxford Commissioners reported of some of the wealthiest Colleges that if they were altogether abolished, there would be a loss to the picturesque architectural beauty of Oxford; there would be no loss to the University, the Church, or the nation. Changes have, of course, been made since the time when that statement was made, but they have not been very vital. We wish to see the Universities thrown altogether open to the nation; and thus, while the nation derives the full benefit of the high traditional position of those great institutions, my hope is, that the freer and fuller life of the nation will in turn react on the Universities, and render them better qualified to fill their high position. 776 I hope that the House will not agree to the Motion of the hon. Gentleman.
§ MR. BERESFORD HOPE
said, that the speech to which they had just listened was one of those strong orations which were apt to be interposed when a great question was approaching to a practical solution. Its argument amounted to the expression of a wish to alter the Universities radically and fundamentally—the belief that the learning imparted there was not sound; the religion taught was not real, and the endowments were too great. In a single word he wished the Universities of England to become the Universities of Scotland and Germany. Such was the hon. Member's argument summed up briefly and neatly. It was well that the House should see to what some persons were driving, while introducing so great a change under the mild form of an enabling measure. He (Mr. Beresford Hope) however, did not read the Bill in the same way as the hon. Gentleman, and in order that it might be fully discussed, he hoped his hon. and learned Friend the Member for Whitehaven would not persist in his Motion, but would take a division on the 6th clause, which touched the Colleges. In his eyes the Bill proposed two things: first, to open the Universities compulsorily; and, secondly, to confer an enabling power upon the Colleges to open themselves to Dissenters. Those two things had no natural connection; and they had been brought forward in former years in different measures. No doubt we had lately heard that the fusion of the two proposals had become unseverable; but the example of that which was going on "elsewhere" showed that policies might come to life again after their extinction had been declared an article of political faith. He would divide the Bill now as it had been heretofore divided, and consider whether it might not be possible to meet the grievance, such as it was, by trying the experiment of only opening the Universities. He could not tell how far the consideration might weigh with the House, but it seemed to him a hardship that the question had now, for the first time during the Session, come on to be seriously debated, after the bodies vitally affected by the Bill had broken up for their summer vacation, and could not be consulted upon any compromise. He did not deny that there was the sem- 777 blance of a grievance. It was, in fact, a general proposition that no proposal for any change was ever made without some grievance, more or less real, existing behind. But the question at issue was whether the remedy might or might not be worse than the disease to which it was applied. Whether it was good or bad in itself to open the Universities, he was willing to try the experiment; because he thought the time had come when it would be wise to make the concession, and run the risk. He was not of the same opinion, however, with regard to the Colleges. The Universities were already open to a very considerable extent. Dissenters might go through the whole curriculum, and obtain Collegiate distinctions and emoluments in their undergraduate career. They might appear in the Honour List, and in both Universities take the degree of B.A.; whilst in Cambridge they might also take that of M.A., though without the vote in the Senate attaching to the degree. And if a person had taken the M.A. degree as a member of the Church of England, he did not forfeit his vote by becoming a Nonconformist. He would equalize the system in both Universities, and allow the Dissenter to take his degree of M.A., and the degrees in Law, Medicine, and Music, and to obtain the votes attaching to those degrees. He thought they might fairly make the experiment without further disputation; and that would clear away the contention involved in the first portion of the Bill. As to the permissive power of the Colleges to open themselves to Nonconformist Fellows, he would ask the House to consider what was the grievance under which Dissenters lay. The grievance of social degradation was a mere chimera. There was no social degradation at all in it. As an undergraduate the Nonconformist wore the same dress, dined in the same hall, and had the same rooms as anybody else. He got into society not according to the creed he professed, but according to his power of making himself agreeable to those with whom he lived; and so the agreeable and intelligent Dissenter had a great advantage over the surly and niggardly Churchman. At the present moment Cambridge could show the Roman Catholic, the Jew, and the votary of one of the ancient religions of the East mixing together upon a footing of ab- 778 solute equality. His hon. Friend the Member for Stoke-upon-Trent (Mr. Melly) had, during the last Session, made a hit by telling a good story of having met seven Dissenters together, worth the expectancy of £4,000,000, in the billiard-room of a provincial club, who, as he averred, had evidently missed the benefits of a University education, because they were Nonconformists. Now, he ventured to observe that this story was totally irrelevant. These gentlemen might, if they liked, have gone to the University and taken their degrees and all prizes open to undergraduates, and all they could not have taken was just what the reversioner of the seventh part of £4,000,000 could not much care for —a Fellowship. He could not but fear, therefore, that the deficiencies of these young gentlemen arose, not so much from the constitution of the Universities as from a genuine preference for billiards and tobacco. Had he (Mr. Melly) told a story of seven intellectual and hardworking sons of Dissenting ministers not worth 400 pence, it would have been more to the purpose; and to such cases he (Mr. Beresford Hope) now addressed himself. He admitted that there was an individual grievance in the case of every Nonconformist, who having distinguished himself at the University, found himself precluded from the higher emoluments and advantages which that University had to bestow upon its meritorious sons. He made that admission knowing its force; but he would proceed to inquire whether the giving of plenary indulgence to those few exceptional persons would or would not be dangerous to the body politic. He feared that it would be so. It must be remembered that the Colleges were not homogeneous institutions, and though the introduction of the alien element into one of the larger Colleges with its sixty Fellows might or might not have serious effects, it would be otherwise in the ease of the smaller Colleges, with, it may be, under a dozen Fellows in all. The hon. Gentleman who had last spoken had drawn an exaggerated picture of the smallness of the amount of religious education now given at the Universities. Admitting for one minute that his description might, in certain respects, be applicable to the minimum amount of religious teaching with which a layman might be able to scrape through, he would remind the 779 hon. Gentleman that he ignored the much larger amount of theological education which the Universities bestowed upon that considerable proportion of their members who proposed to enter the sacred ministry. It was the injury to those men, arising from permission being given to the Colleges to alter their religious character, which he dreaded. The time might come when such seminaries for the clergy of a disestablished and disendowed Church of England as they had in the Colleges of our two Universities would be of the greatest value; and in face of the possibility of the day for the great crash coming for the Church of England he did not see why they should now huckster away one by one the advantages she now enjoyed. He would briefly touch upon one of the most specious arguments in favour of the change. It had been argued that because the Church of England—the most tolerant Church in the world, by the confession alike of friend and foe—admitted of many shades of difference, and that those who cast those shades, lived together in tolerable harmony within the several Colleges, therefore, that a little more diversity outside of that Church would not spoil the harmony. To him the argument seemed to answer itself. The course of that apparently difficult harmony, in face of antagonistic tendencies, was the secret influence of the occult vexus involved in belonging to the same community, being of the same Church. Take away that gentle yet persuasive restraint, and it would be impossible to say what breaches of peace and charity, what conflicts, might not ensue. Had the Colleges and the Universities themselves invited that change? He contended that they had not. The University which he had the honour of representing had last year presented a Petition against the Bill, signed by between 2,000 and 3,000 of its members. This year it had presented one as numerously signed, and bearing such names as Stokes and Adams, Challis and Willis—men of European fame— men whose genuine zeal for the advancement of scientific knowledge, for its own sake, all must recognize. There might, he said again, be here and there an individual grievance, but had they ever given the Universities a fair opportunity of trying whether they could not in some way or other remedy that indi- 780 vidual grievance? They had not; and he contended, therefore, that it was premature and unfair to apply the cutting remedy of the knife to a complaint which gentle and curative remedies might heal. The present House of Commons had surely done enough this year in the way of pulling down, and might be content with passing only that portion of the Bill that had to do with the Universities, and postponing to another Session the one or two clauses which had references to the Colleges, with a view to seeing whether, in the meantime, when the attention of the Universities had been seriously directed to the question, some means might not be found of indemnifying, of honouring, and of contenting Nonconformists who had distinguished themselves in their University career, without altering the constitution of the Colleges themselves. The method he proposed would be that of enabling the Colleges to alienate some portion of their revenues for the purpose of founding University or honorary Fellowships or prelectorships, which would enable the Nonconformists to enjoy the substantial rewards of their studies without giving them a share in the Government of the Colleges. This solution of the difficulty had often formed the subject of private deliberation among the persons most interested in the question, but it had never been publicly canvassed, owing to the somewhat high-handed way in which the promoters of the Bill had always declined to enter into counsel with the Universities.
MR. W. H. GLADSTONE
said, he was anxious to offer a few remarks, which should be very brief, upon this question, because he was one of those who were prepared to support this Bill, and yet who did not wish to see any very great alteration in the general character of the education at our Universities. He believed that the idea which lay at the bottom of the opposition to this Bill was that the effect of it would be to secularize the Universities, that is, to destroy the distinctive character of their religious teaching. Now, if he thought that secularization was to be the result of this Bill, he did not think he should be able to vote for it; but he was far from thinking that the secularizing of the teaching in the Universities would be the result. By secularization he supposed was meant the destruction 781 or elimination of the religious element. But in what did the religious element in University education chiefly consist? Not, he thought, in the religious teaching given, but rather in the influence which the associations of the place exercised on undergraduates; the respect and veneration excited by the characters of the great men who had lived there, and in the private study of divinity. These influences the Bill would be unable to affect; and, therefore, he should vote for it, as he had voted for it before, believing that it would not destroy the religious influences now felt at the Universities. There were two or three alternatives to the passing of this measure. One was to leave things as they were. That alternative, he thought, they might consider as practically given up. The opinion of the country was growing stronger and stronger against such a course. First and foremost his reason against it was that it was inequitable. The present position of things was one they could not maintain. To allow Dissenters to come to the Universities, to toil through the inferior stages of the course of education, and when at last they offered themselves for examination for Fellowships to say— ''Thus far shall ye come, but no farther,'' was a position which could not long be maintained. But, beyond this, he would submit that the present test system was ineffectual; and for two reasons. It was ineffectual partly because, he was told, there were persons who took the test not bonâ fide, arguing that as it was, in their view, an immoral test, they could not be morally bound to observe it. He hoped there were not many who acted on such a principle, but he had been told, and he believed, there were some. The present system was also ineffectual, because the House must recollect that of late years the tendency had been to throw more and more of the teaching of the place into the hands of quite young men, who were lecturers or private tutors, but who, in many cases, were neither tutors nor Fellows, and who, therefore, were not brought under the test. There was one other alternative— it was the scheme alluded to by the hon. Member for the University of Cambridge (Mr. Beresford Hope) for retaining one portion of the endowments in connection with the rest, and surrendering the other. That had not been 782 hitherto much ventilated; but, as far as he was able to form an opinion of it, it seemed to him that the result of this scheme would be unfortunate. It would tend to bring the various Colleges, if not into antagonism, at least into very marked contradistinction one from another, and to destroy that social equality which was, upon the whole, so satisfactory a characteristic of University education. He also thought it would be the means of introducing that very secularism which he should be very sorry to see introduced. There remained nothing for it but to pass this Bill. Having voted for the second reading, he should vote for going into Committee, because above all he considered it was equitable. He thought to shut out Dissenters from the legitimate rewards of a University course was a thing most invidious for us to do, and most humiliating for them to submit to. Moreover, he was convinced that this change would be highly beneficial to the Universities. The Universities were places of learning and religion; and long might they so continue. But surely they were pre-eminently places of learning, and, if so, he thought it followed that they should be recruited from all ranks, to whatever creed those persons might belong, who were fitted by talent, position, and acquirements to extend the sphere of their usefulness. For these reasons he should vote for now going into Committee; but he trusted the hon. Member for Whitehaven (Mr. Bentinck) would not give them the trouble of dividing.
congratulated the House on the speech which they had just heard from the hon. Member for Whitby (Mr. W. H. Gladstone). It was a clear, moderate, and admirable statement of the case on his side of the question. The hon. Member had made a favourable impression on the House, and he was sure that all who had heard him would wish to hear him often again. He desired, however, now, to point out the extraordinary difference there was between the two speeches that had been made in support of the Bill. The speech of the hon. Member who had just sat down, delivered as it was with great clearness, seemed to him to run directly counter to the speech of the hon. Member for Stirling (Mr. Campbell). That hon. Member argued as if the education now given in the Universities was defi- 783 cient, and as if that deficiency was in consequence of the non-admission of Dissenters. The Universities, he said, gave the minimum of the advantages of education with the maximum of its cost; that they discouraged learning; and, therefore, if any conclusion could be drawn from his premises, they ought to admit Dissenters, when all those evils would disappear, or, at least, be greatly mitigated. Now the hon. Gentleman ought to bear in mind that this was not at all a question whether Dissenters ought to be educated at the Universities or not. The hon. Gentleman's arguments might have been applicable thirty years ago when tests were applied not only on taking degrees but also on matriculation, and by these no doubt Dissenters were excluded. But since that time no tests were applied—no distinctions were made to prevent Dissenters from obtaining the full benefit of University education. Every possible encouragement was given them. Sizar-ships, Exhibitions, and Scholarships, he was glad to say, were open to Dissenters; and, speaking of Cambridge, of which he naturally knew more than of Oxford, he could state that within the last eight or ten years almost every variety of creed had been educated within its halls, comprising not only Dissenters on certain points of the Christian faith, but members of the Jewish persuasion, Parsees, and others, for whose religious instruction the parents undertook to make provision. The hon. Gentleman also alluded to what he called the failure of education in the Universities, and he spoke as if this alleged failure would be remedied by this Bill. Now it was fair to say that he believed there never was a period in the history of the country when the Universities did more to advance the education of the country, of Dissenters as well as Churchmen, than they had done within the last twenty years. The hon. Gentleman also seemed to think that the number of those attending the Universities had not increased. They had not increased as their friends would wish them to do; there were many reasons why the increase did not keep pace—though the fact was doubtful—with the increase in the population. But within the last ten or twelve years the number of matriculations at Cambridge had risen from 400 to 610, in those ten or twelve years show- 784 ing an increase of 50 per cent. The hon. Member said they had not increased equal to the students of foreign Universities. [Mr. CAMPBELL: I said the Scotch Universities.] Well, he had not a word to say against the Scotch Universities; he believed they did their work admirably, and he might advert to them afterwards as furnishing a proper mode of dealing with this Bill. But with regard to the foreign Universities, the House must bear in mind that there was a compulsory system, for no man could enter the service of the Government in any department without being required to go through a course of University education. The English system, on the other hand, was entirely voluntary. And yet, with the single exception of Berlin, there was not a foreign University that was equal in point of numbers to their own. The number of students in Berlin was 2,180, the number at Cambridge 2,153, so that the two were very nearly equal, and Cambridge exceeded all the other foreign Universities. Then it was said that the bulk of the people did not get the benefit of a University education, and that it was the object of this Bill to give it to them. He had already observed that he should be sorry if they did not get the benefit of an University education. But he maintained that every encouragement was given for the purpose, and that the Scholarships and Exhibitions were as so many shafts driven down into the lower strata of society, by which men might be brought up to the highest, and many of the most distinguished men in the country had risen to eminence in that way. It ought also to be borne in mind that Oxford had, some years ago, provided means for young students residing in lodgings, who could not afford to live in College, and Cambridge had since followed in the same course. This, then, was not a question of education; it was simply this — whether by the proposed alteration they could admit every variety of religious opinion to the Universities by opening them more than they were open at present, and by opening the Colleges in the one point on which alone there was anything like exclusion—and here he more particularly adverted to the speech of the hon. Member for Whitby (Mr. W. H. Gladstone) —without the neglect of religious ordinances, without the compromise of reli- 785 gious consistency, and without any disturbance of religious peace. No one could deny that that was a fair test of the merits of the Bill. If they could adopt any scheme which would admit Dissenters to Convocation and to a vote in the Senate, on these terms, and reserving, of course, the Theological Professorships, which implied that the Professors must be members of the Church of England, then he would be among the foremost to say that he had no strong feeling of opposition to this Bill. But with regard to the Colleges, there was this to be borne in mind. In former times it might be contended that the Fellowships were not necessarily a part of the rewards for an University career, but were intended rather as the means by which a Governing Body for the University should be maintained, and it was through them that the Governing Body was now constituted. Well, then, if they were to make such an alteration as to enable any person to obtain a Fellowship, and so to become a member of the Governing Body, would the Governing Body, according to the trusts of the foundation and the usage which had ever existed, be a Governing Body according to the tenets of the Church with which alone these Colleges were connected? He had heard it stated over and over again that the admission of a few Dissenters would not prevent the continuance of the present religious system. But, to test the value of that opinion, they must see what the consequences of the admission of a few Dissenters would be upon the Governing Body. To take the case of Cambridge. The Colleges at Cambridge were divided into two classes—the larger Colleges of St. John's and Trinity, and in the other class all the minor Colleges—minor, he meant, as regards numbers. Now the seniority of St. John's and Trinity consisted only of eight Fellows, while the seniority of the others was even less than that, and consisted of only five or six. If, therefore, no precautions were taken, they might easily get a Governing Body which would not govern the Colleges according to the doctrines of the Established Church. The hon. Member for Whitby said that religious education would still be carried on much as it was now. His belief was that if this Bill were to pass one of two consequences must follow—either every form of religious be- 786 lief must be admitted into the Governing Body—and then it would be exceedingly difficult to carry on the work of religious instruction upon any system—or else they must say that there should be no religious instruction at all. Taking either alternative, they were running a danger which, at least, it was their duty to anticipate before passing the Bill into law. As to what had been said about the deficiency of religious instruction he wished to point out that it was not the amount of religious instruction which was to be given so much as the system established within these institutions which gave them their religious character. They were all the creatures of habit and the children of circumstances; they were governed more by association than by direct teaching and the particular instruction which might be given at the Universities. The influences infused into the youthful mind by such habits and associations were much more powerful than the direct religious teaching on the future life of the student. These influences he was unwilling to do away with. These, he feared, would be done away with if the Bill were passed in its present state. What was there to meet the difficulty? To his mind there were two and only two ways. The one was to establish Fellowships which should not be connected with the Colleges, but which should be made and instituted as the reward of a distinguished career; and that he thought would be difficult to accomplish. The other course was that some such course should be adopted as that which the hon. and learned Member for Richmond (Sir E. Palmer) recommended—that those who were admitted to Fellowships should make a declaration that they would not take advantage of their position to do anything or say anything contrary to the authority of the Divine Scriptures, or that militated against that form of religion which had always been the religion of the University and the Colleges. He was willing to go into Committee to see if provisions of that character could be introduced into the Bill; if not, he feared that he must oppose a measure which could not be passed without detriment or danger to the religious character of our University education.
§ MR. NEWDEGATE
said, that on a former Bill strong convictions had been expressed, but no division had taken 787 place. The Amendments in that case were proposed from the other side of the House. Now the debate had been maintained from this side of the House, and it elicited from the hon. Member for Whitby (Mr. W. H. Gladstone) the hope that the religious character of the Universities would not be changed. That was a hope in which he did not join. If, however, the hon. Member desired to maintain the character of the Universities, such as it was, that was a desire in which he cordially shared. But what he wished to point out was that in this House they were coming to the habit of expressing strong convictions by their speeches, but of not giving effect to those convictions by their votes. The feeling was spreading still further in the country. Then, it appeared, that strong feelings were not to be expressed, if those feelings were disagreeable to others. The Home Secretary took it upon himself to prohibit a meeting, if he thought the opinions expressed were likely to be disagreeable to certain parties. The Mayor of Birmingham arrested a rate-payer who was going to a meeting, because it was supposed that that rate-payer would do or say something disagreeable. ["Question!"] Now what was this coming to? Hitherto, the system of government in this country, as in the Universities, rested upon the belief that Englishmen would not only express their opinions, but act upon them. On the other side of the House an example was being set of expressing opinions, and not only not acting upon them, but acting in direct contravention of them; and the very measure before the House was to prevent the requirement of the expression of decided opinion in matters connected with religion. To what was all this tending? Why, to a state of things which existed only under despotic Governments. He wished to impress on the House that if the present system of education in this country was to be maintained, it could only exist on the foundation on which it had hitherto rested; and that foundation had always been that not only should the people express, but act upon their convictions, and recognize conscience as the basis of their actions. He saw in the present Bill a proposal to undermine the education of future generations of a higher class; and his belief was that this was but a step in that course of pro- 788 ceedings which would not only change the laws and customs of the country, but effect such an extensive change in the course of education as would alter the whole system of thought and action, disassociating action from conscience, and in the course of time, undermine those institutions, on which he placed the highest value. He did not care how large might be the majority, or how small the minority, but must enter his protest against the course which was now being pursued.
said, that after the appeal of the hon. Member near him (Mr. Beresford Hope) he would not trouble the House to divide, but would withdraw his Amendment.
§ Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.
§ Main Question, "That Mr. Speaker do now leave the Chair," put, and agreed to.
§ Bill considered, in Committee.
§ (In the Committee.)
§ Clause 1 (Short title of Act).
§ MR. STEVENSON moved, in page 1, line 13, leave out "and," and after "Cambridge," insert "and Durham," in order to prevent the government of that University being left solely in the hands of members of the Church of England.
§ MR. MOWBRAY
said, he did not see the necessity for the Amendment, because he believed the feeling of the Convocation of Durham was to do that voluntarily which was now proposed to be done by Act of Parliament. To adopt the Amendment, would, he thought, be setting a new and undesirable precedent in our legislation.
§ MR. BOUVERIE
asked whether it was competent to the Committee to extend to the Durham University the title of a Bill, the object of which was to repeal certain statutes relative to Oxford and Cambridge? The whole scope of the Bill referred to these two Universities, and had nothing whatever to do with the University of Durham.
said, it had been held that when the subject-matter of a Bill had not been departed from, it might be extended over a wider area than was contemplated when the Bill was introduced. He therefore thought that the Amendment was not out of Order.
§ MR. COLLINS
said, that the Preamble only referred to Oxford and Cambridge. Could Durham be introduced without an Instruction to the Committee?
§ MR. HENDERSON
said, that the University of Durham was established, in 1837, by Royal Charter, which gave the power of conferring degrees. Several years ago all religious tests, except in regard to theological degrees, were done away with. There were, however, still some disabilities and restrictions which were disadvantageous to students, namely —the difficulty of obtaining a seat in the Senate and in Convocation. The object of the Amendment was to do away with those disabilities, and to establish perfect religious equality, and it was calculated in an enormous degree to increase the educational power of the University. As no opposition had been offered, it might be presumed that Durham University was inclined to submit itself to the authority of Parliament.
supported the Amendment, and believed that its operation would, be highly advantageous to the North of England.
THE SOLICITOR GENERAL
said, that Durham University originally formed no part of the scheme, and it would be a strong measure to alter the purpose for which that University was founded, during the lifetime of one of its founders. He had not, however, heard that the University of Durham objected to being included in the Bill, and as he understood from the right hon. Gentleman opposite (Mr. Mowbray) that it was likely to do voluntarily what was now proposed, he should offer no objection to the Amendment.
§ MR. COLLINS
said, he did not see how any objections could possibly come from Durham when the Preamble and the Title only referred to the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge. No one could have supposed that the Bill applied to Durham, and he did not think it right that Durham University should be included in the Bill by a side-wind. He thought the University of Durham should have had more time to consider the Amendment.
§ MR. HENDERSON
said, the University had had timely notice of these 790 alterations which had been discussed by the Senate, and if they had thought it wise to appear here by Petition they would have done so.
§ Amendment agreed to.
§ Clause, as amended, agreed to.
§ Clause 2 agreed to.
§ Clause 3 (Persons taking lay academicals degrees not to be required, to subscribe any formulary of faith, &c).
MR. GATHORNE HARDY
said, that he should have been prepared, on the question of principle, to have divided against the Bill on any stage; and if he did not now divide against the present clause it was not because he had changed in his opposition to the Bill, for he still strongly objected to its principle, and he believed it was impossible to carry it out on any satisfactory footing. He would, however, take a division on the 6th clause, and he thought it right to give the hon. and learned Gentleman timely notice of his intention.
§ Clause, as amended, ordered to stand part of the Bill.
§ Clauses 4 and 5 agreed to.
§ Clause 6 (Act of Uniformity, &c, so far as relates to Collegiate offices, &c, repealed).
§ MR. RAIKES
moved, in line 33, to leave out "mastership or headship" and "tutorship." Hon. Members opposite seemed to consider that Collegiate offices should be regarded as academical prizes; but hon. Gentlemen on that side were not of that opinion. The object of this Amendment was to except from the operation of the clause those offices which stood in loco parentis, and there was a wide distinction between such offices and the offices of instruction. The majority of parents who sent their sons to the Universities were members of the Church of England, and it was not unfair that the persons to whom they committed their sons for care and discipline should be members of the same communion to which they belonged. The Amendment would leave entirely open the Fellowships, lectureships, &c, which it would be the ambition of Nonconformists to obtain. When hon. Members opposite had the splendid majority they possessed at present, it was always well to be generous, and if they wished to settle the question upon an enduring 791 basis the best way to do so was by showing some consideration for the sympathies of the minority.
§ MR. BOUVERIE
said, that this Amendment was an illustration of the un wisdom of refusing moderate proposals when there was an opportunity of coming to an agreement; because when he first introduced this portion of the Bill seven or eight years ago his proposal did not extend to headships or tutorships at all, but to Fellowships. With regard to masterships and tutorships, he thought the Act of Uniformity afforded no security whatever, the real security was in the statutes of the Colleges. In Oxford, he believed the statutes of every College but one required the master to be a clergyman of the Church of England; and, consequently, a much greater security was in that way obtained for the doctrine, belief, and religious character of the head of the College than could possibly be had by maintaining the provision of the Act of Uniformity which imposed a declaration of conformity with the doctrines of the Church of England.
§ MR. J. G. TALBOT
supported the Amendment, and appealed to the Treasury Bench to meet the opposition in the spirit in which the Opposition were disposed to meet them. If they were to do so, they might obtain a solution which would be satisfactory to moderate men. He would appeal to the First Lord of the Treasury himself, who, up to recent times, had very strong opinions on this subject, to give his views to the Committee. This was a subject upon which very strong opinions were held, not only in that House but out of it, and the clergy felt much more interested in it than even in the important subject now under debate in "another place." He remembered reading a speech of the Prime Minister, in which he said that so long as the people of this country wished that an Established Church should remain in this country so long should the connection between religion, the Church, and the Universities remain. He hoped we had not arrived at the conclusion that the Established Church of this country was not to remain.
§ MR. WALTER
said, it appeared to him that they were forestalling the discussion upon the clause as a whole, and that the particular question raised by the hon. Member was one of comparatively 792 trivial importance. The question, it appeared to him, would have to be settled ultimately between the Governing Bodies of the Colleges and the public at large,— that is, the parents of the young men who should go to the Colleges. He, for one, could not imagine, if the present state of feeling continued, and the great majority of parents desired that their sons should receive a religious education, that they would ever send their sons to receive education where no religious instruction whatever would be given. He could not conceive it likely that any College, which expected to retain its hold upon Church of England parents, would consent to appoint to a tutorship or a headship the member of a different persuasion, because that would be the way to lose its connection with that class of parents altogether. But this clause did afford the best possible way of putting a great principle to the test,—namely, whether or not and to what extent the members of other religious bodies than the Church of England should be permitted to enjoy the full rewards of University distinction. While, for one, he was not prepared to go the full length of the hon. Member for Brighton (Mr. Fawcett) and apply any compulsory measure to the Colleges, he would throw on them the onus of acting as they thought fit, and leave the question of religious instruction in the Universities to be settled between them, and the public at large.
THE SOLICITOR GENERAL
said, the very last course he would wish to take in any matter was to act on the principle of vœ victis to which the hon. Gentleman had alluded. But he wished to point out what they were doing by this Bill and what the hon. Gentleman proposed to qualify. The Bill, as had been said two or three times over, was divided into two parts, dealing with, two separate subjects, and on two different principles. Right or wrong, those who were advocating this Bill thought the Universities national institutions, in the sense that Parliament could dictate to them the policy they should pursue. With regard to the Colleges, right or wrong, they had treated them as quasi- private institutions, as institutions which were to be consulted in all the changes that might be made. They removed all Parliamentary restrictions upon their freedom of action, and left them bound by 793 their own statutes. Whatever their statutes, they would remain unaltered; whatever their feelings, they would remain unaltered; all that was proposed was to remove from their freedom of action those restrictions which Parliament itself had imposed. But this measure would be useless, and would not have twelve months' life, if they drew such distinctions as the hon. Gentleman desired. He left the Colleges free, but did not force them in their action.
, seeing the right hon. Gentleman the Prime Minister in his place, wished to repeat the remarks he had already made, to the effect that it was important the right hon. Gentleman should state his views upon this measure, with reference to which his opinions had undergone so recent and so important a change. Until last year the right hon. Gentleman had always voted against this Bill, and therefore, looking at the policy he had pursued with reference to the Irish Church, the Committee had a right to expect that the right hon. Gentleman would state what policy the Government intended to pursue with respect to religious institutions generally. It must not be forgotten that the right hon. Gentleman was now associated with those who were the declared enemies of all religious Establishments.
§ MR. RAIKES
said, he would not put the Committee to the trouble of dividing on his Amendment, but would withdraw it.
§ Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.
§ On Question, "That the Clause, as amended, stand part of the Bill,"
§ MR. MOWBRAY
said, he wished to make a few observations before the Committee proceeded to a division upon the clause. The hon. and learned Gentleman (the Solicitor General) was mistaken if he supposed that the Bill met the wishes or would satisfy the demands of Dissenters. At a breakfast of the Friends of Religious Liberty, held on the 16th of March last, one of the speakers, Sir George Young, said that the University Tests Bill was not so valuable a measure as some supposed, and would only do away with the restrictions imposed by Act of Parliament, and not with those imposed by the Colleges, and another speaker followed in the same strain, and denied that it ought to be 794 regarded as a compromise. Where, then, was the worth of the concession if these were the views of those for whose sake the measure was intended? The Solicitor General had said that the Colleges were not national institutions like the Universities, and that, therefore, there was no intention to interfere with them. But, if this Bill were passed he saw nothing to prevent an attack being made upon the Colleges next year. He should divide against the clause.
§ SIR ROUNDELL PALMER
said, it would be time enough to oppose undesirable changes when they were proposed, and that the present clause should be regarded on its own merits, and not as a possible step to future changes. If it were the sound view to allow the Colleges to have as much freedom as to the admission of persons not belonging to the Church of England to their offices and emoluments as would be consistent, if Parliament did not interfere to the contrary, with their own constitutions and laws—and that was his view of the matter—it was also a sound view that they should be freed from all the Parliamentary restraints now imposed upon them. Those who really wished to maintain religious teaching in the Universities would be resting their case upon a false issue if they were to say—"We must either retain the old Parliamentary restrictions or we must give up everything." For his part, he did not intend to abandon religious teaching, and he believed that there were many on his side of the House who entertained the same view. He did not believe that there was a majority on the side of the House on which he sat who were desirous of merely secularizing the education of the University. Whether that were the case or not, the difficulties in the way of legislating for such an object would be infinitely greater than those which were in the way of those who desired to see the Colleges free from Parliamentary restraints. On the whole he could not join in a vote against this clause.
MR. GATHORNE HARDY
regretted that those who opposed this clause would not have the support of the hon. and learned Member for Richmond (Sir Roundell Palmer), who had at heart the preservation of the religious character of the Universities. They were now dealing with a state of things which he could not bring himself to look upon in 795 the same light as the hon. and learned Member. The hon. and learned Member said that they were about to remove merely the Parliamentary restrictions upon the Colleges. Why, that was almost an idle remark. Already they had within the House many who were anxious to carry the measure still further than it went at present, while it was quite clear that outside the House a great many persons were by no means satisfied with it. What would be the result if one College were to open its doors to all, while another retained its restrictions? He was unwilling to take away the existing Parliamentary restrictions so as to permit a temporary majority to effect a change in the constitution of the Colleges which would never be reversed. It would be as impossible to restore the restrictions when once abolished as it would be to render the London University a denominational institution. But this was the principle upon which he (Mr. G. Hardy) was acting himself; and it was also the principle laid down by the right hon. Gentleman at the head of the Government, and which he had never withdrawn or qualified. Last year, the right hon. Gentleman voted in a different sense from what he had ever done before, without any explanation or without retracting any of the expressions he had uttered on the subject on former occasions. In 1866, the right hon. Gentleman said it seemed to him an act of equity, justice, and policy to demand that nothing should be done which would not secure the maintenance of a religious system of education in the Universities. In 1867, he said he would not question that security should be taken to preserve the present system of religious education in the Universities and Colleges. What did the hon. and learned Gentleman the Member for Richmond propose? He proposed to do away with the old tests for the purpose of substituting a new one. If they had a divided Governing Body, they would have in it men of no religion at all—men who were anxious to escape from the trammels which they had imposed upon themselves, but which they were anxious to shake off, because they now believed them to be the fetters of superstition. It was idle to suppose that they could continue the religious teaching in the Colleges if the conscientious convictions of each individual were to be regarded, and they must come 796 to secularization, whatever might be their wishes in the matter. It was not the intention of Bills of this kind that things should remain as they are. That might be the intention of the Mover, who began by introducing such a mild measure, and who, a few years ago, opposed this very proposal. Until, however, they relaxed all restrictions and securities in the Universities and Colleges, that system of religious instruction ought still to be preserved, which he believed best for the interests of the Universities themselves and the nation at large.
said, a few minutes ago the hon. Member (Mr. Bentinck) made an appeal to him, which he thought it best not to answer, because the tone and language of that appeal were hardly such as ought to be used on a subject of this kind, or, indeed, on any subject at all. The right hon. Gentleman who had just sat down had also referred to declarations of his made some time ago, and had challenged him to declare whether he abided by them or not. The right hon. Gentleman was perfectly entitled to ask him whether he had departed from the principle of religious education in the Universities and Colleges of this country which he had formerly maintained. His opinion on the subject was exactly the same as it had ever been. He heartily and cordially desired that both in the Universities and Colleges the education given should continue to be religious. He desired that the Bill should give, as he believed it would give every facility for the foundation, within the Universities, of Colleges in the constitution of which, the greatest possible freedom should exist. He did not desire to interfere with those who, from benevolent motives, founded establishments for seculiar education; but, on the other hand, they ought to give ample liberty to those who founded Colleges for the maintenance of their own particular religion, with whatever restrictions they thought proper, and they ought to respect those restrictions as the offspring of conscientious convictions. As regarded the general principle, he trusted he had now plainly and unequivocally answered the appeal made to him. With respect to the Bill itself, he had stated, in the first instance, that he would accede to no such Bill without just and adequate securities for religious education in the 797 Universities and Colleges. In the next place he had always insisted — herein strongly differing from his hon. and learned Friend (the Solicitor General)— that it was idle and impossible to deal with the Universities by Act of Parliament without also legislating for the Colleges, because he was not prepared to say, either on legal or historical grounds, that any line could be drawn between them so broad as to make it desirable for them to take their stand upon it, while, in other respects, he saw plainly that any concession given to the Universities, if it were not worthless, would, at all events, be totally insufficient and unsatisfactory so long as they continued to say to young men what they now said in the University of Cambridge—"You may go to the University, and obtain the advantages of its teaching and its highest honours; but, having so done, you shall not be admitted to those College emoluments and powers which are the regular crown and legitimate consummation of a University career." His hon. and learned Friend had completely met his views on this subject in the Bill before the House, and with respect to the securities for religious education, he had not only inserted language which went to establish the present legal status of the instructors, but also expressed his willingness to admit the further declaration on the subject which had been proposed by his hon. and learned Friend (Sir Roundell Palmer). He spoke of the declaration with which the Solicitor General agreed, because in respect to the new test proposed by his hon. and learned Friend (Sir Roundell Palmer), although he did not see the same objections to it which others felt, yet he did not see such a value attaching to it as to make it desirable for Parliament to attempt the formation of a new test at all. No doubt his own views had been modified from time to time on this subject, and if the hon. Member for Whitehaven (Mr. Bentinck) thought fit to taunt him for having altered them since he ceased to be a Member for the University of Oxford, he was perfectly welcome to do so as often as he pleased. ["Divide!"] Well, he was answering the hon. Gentleman. The very last charge the hon. Gentleman would succeed in fastening upon him would be, that his career as Member for the University of Oxford 798 had been distinguished by any undue subserviency to the opinions or prejudices of his then constituents. He would simply say that if it could be proved that this House had maintained one firm standing ground on this subject, all those who had done so might reproach those who, acting at one time in a contrary sense, felt bound to take all the circumstances in view in the proposition they recommended. It was, however, most remarkable that on that very day, and on that very occasion, they had heard one of the Members of the University of Oxford say that, so far as the Universities were concerned, he thought it more or less open for consideration whether the Bill should be resisted if it were confined within those limits. They had also heard both the Members for the University of Cambridge, for the first time, plainly and explicitly express a desire to make, so far as the Universities were concerned, the whole concession proposed by the Bill. When concessions of this kind were made, it had always appeared to him that when Parliament did interfere its interference should be sufficient and effectual. It was always, however, his opinion that it was impossible to legislate for the Universities and to refuse to legislate for the Colleges. When the time had come for legislation of this kind it would, he thought, be far better to place it upon a basis sufficiently broad to make it effectual for its purpose. And that was the reason why he gave his cordial support to the measure of his hon. and learned Friend.
§ Question put, "That the Clause, as amended, stand part of the Bill."
§ The Committee divided:—Ayes 216; Noes 95: Majority 121.
§ House resumed.
§ Committee report Progress; to sit again upon Friday, at Two of the clock.