HC Deb 26 April 1877 vol 233 cc1950-2010

Order for Committee read.

Motion made, and Question proposed, "That Mr. Speaker do now leave the Chair."


who was very indistinctly heard, rose to move that— It is undesirable largely to increase the professoriate or to establish offices in the University unconnected with tuition, at the expense of the Colleges. The noble Lord was understood to say that, in common with every other Member of the House, he was desirous that as soon as possible the learned Bodies to be affected by the Bill should be relieved of the suspense in which the now found themselves. He could not, however, forget that by the measure before the House they were asked to take a leap in the dark, nor could he be blind to the fact that the powers conferred upon the Commissioners to be appointed under the Bill were so vague that within those powers they might cause an absolute revolution in our University system. He trusted that would not be the result of the measure; but he feared that unless the Commissioners were actuated and guided by principles of great moderation, incalculable mischief might be done to the cause of higher education and had of liberal culture. They had never had an answer given to the question as to what were the real needs of the Universities and what were their available resources. He would not inquire into the question how far it might be necessary to provide funds for the sustentation of the historical Libraries which were possessed by the Universities, to what extent they should provide for the practical working of the scientific departments, or to what extent building operations might be necessary; but he would call attention to the demand that was made in some quarters that there should be a large increase in the Professoriate. They might regard the primary object of the Universities, he thought, as being this —that they should, above all things, be educational institutions. History and experience pointed to that, so far as this country was concerned, whatever might be the case elsewhere, and the legislation of recent years tended to confirm that view; in fact, they were looked upon by the people as the crown and apex of the educational system. He trusted the Commissioners would keep that fact before them, and that they would re-establish that solid, severe, and simple system of educational training—under which so many great men had been brought up—which had been abandoned; that they should organize and concentrate the means of education. The panacea recommended by some persons was the divergence of the College revenues to miscellaneous by-paths of learning; to no one knew what branches and departments of study. It was wished to multiply the number of Professors. He was reminded of the squib— Professors we are, from over the sea, From the land where Professors in plenty be. He hoped that the House would not be beguiled into forgetting one thing—that the Professors were outside the system of University life. A Professorship was nothing but an elaborate and costly compliment to its holder; that would be the case so long as Professors had only their present status, and wanted the means of making their influence felt which was possessed by tutors. The hon. Member for the Elgin Burghs (Mr. Grant Duff) was wrath with him last year for advocating that view; but he trusted the House would not be beguiled into taking the opposite by the argument of the hon. Member—who was, no doubt, a very learned and superior person. Under the old system Professors had plenty to do and little to get. Were they going to change all that now, and to endow Professors who would have little or no work to do? Scholars would still go to their tutors, leaving the Professors high and dry. Provision was also to be made for the encouragement of Art; but what did that mean? In Oxford they already had an illustrious Professor of the Fine Arts. Were they going, at the expense of acquaintance on the part of the youth of the country with the language and literature of antiquity, to make such expensive provision as would enable dille-tante dreamers to dawdle about in Rome and Naples, and probably in the East, in search of curiosities and unique specimens in the interest of fine art? There were tendencies in this direction that ought to be repressed, if the Universities were to be made the home of the soundest and most solid education that could possibly be afforded. The Universities did not need an indefinite increase of the Professoriate, but simply re-organization. It was not a fact that the main departments of study in the Universities were being, or ever had been, concentrated in the hands of the best teachers who could be found. The fact was, that nearly the whole of the education in the Universities was committed to young and inexperienced men, who had scarcely got through their own examinations when they were made Fellows and Tutors of either their own Colleges, or other Colleges in in the Universities to which they belonged. If the Universities were to maintain their positions, the standard of preliminary examinations and of examinations for degrees must be raised. Unless this was done the University system would remain a sham, and it would be clear that the question of high education was being simply trifled with. They would have to conquer the exaggerated spirit of athleticism which prevailed; little intellectual work was to be got out of the athletes. They must also diminish the exaggerated importance which was attached, even by honour men, to the examinations which they had to pass. At Oxford it was a standing joke to compare a man in the first class with a first-class man, and it would continue to be so until the system of examinations was made more real. The length of residence and the duration of periods of study were also questions which ought to be carefully considered; for, as matter of fact, the period of study in the Universities at present was incomparably small when put side by side with that in either elementary, endowed, or public schools. A good deal had been said about "endowing Research." Whatever the phrase might mean, he could not think that it was connected with either education, religion, or learning; and, therefore, he could see no reason for creating a class of salaried or endowed persons who had no real and close connection with the main objects for which the Universities had been founded. Further, he hoped the House would, under no circumstances, take a course that would have the effect of prejudicing or impairing the College system, which had been found to work so well, and so much to accord with English habits and predilections. He hoped that the Commissioners to be appointed under the Bill would not attempt any financial re-adjustments that could have the effect of diminishing the guarantees of high culture pertaining to the College system, with the chance of giving only slight guarantees that the study of science would be advanced by the change. The noble Lord concluded by moving his Amendment.

Amendment proposed, To leave out from the word "That" to the end of the Question, in order to add the words it is undesirable largely to increase the professoriate, or to establish offices in the University unconnected with tuition, at the expense of the Colleges,"—(Lord Francis Hervey,) —instead thereof.

Question proposed, "That the words proposed to be left out stand part of the Question."


Sir, this Amendment of the noble Lord, which in form is an Instruction to the Committee, is in fact an attempt to elicit an expression of Parliamentary opinion which may guide the policy of the Commissioners who are nominated in the Bill, in whose hands the future of our system of higher instruction will be. This measure leaves so extensive a power in the hands of persons unconnected with this House, that it is most important that we should clearly lay down for the information of those persons why it is that we want any fresh legislation about our Universities. The object of the Bill has, in my opinion, never been so well described as by the Secretary of State for War. "This," says the right hon. Gentleman, "is not a political or theological measure. It is an academical Bill. It takes the Universities and colleges as it finds them; and its object is to give them increased life and energy." Now, Sir, how has this Bill found the Universities? What is now the special quality of our Universities? What is that peculiar excellence in their system which, whatever else we do, we must be scrupulously careful to preserve and to improve? It is that, what they teach, they teach with a thoroughness that has never been attained, or even approached, by any educating Body in any country in the world? Show me elsewhere the Universities, or group of Universities, that turn out annually 40 such mathematicians as the Cambridge Wranglers; 20 such scholars as the leading score of men in the Cambridge Classical Tripos; 30 young men, of equal age, who have the advantage of a culture at once so broad and so accurate as those who have appeared in the first class of the Literœ Humaniores at Oxford. This is not the boast of a blind and vulgar patriotism. I do not believe I am over stating the case when I say that the tutors of Harvard and Yale in the United States would admit that they never have had a pupil who could hold his own in Greek and Latin with the crack men of the English Universities. Now, Sir, I am not hero to plead in behalf of pure mathematics, or pure scholarship. But it is a matter of incalculable national importance that our future legislators, and administrators, and lawyers, and schoolmasters, should have a training about which there is nothing flashy or pretentious; that they should have learned betimes to work hard; to appreciate the distinction between knowing a thing and only appearing to know it; and, when they have got their knowledge, that they should be able to put it to the best advantage. But, Sir, the defect of our Universities is this—that if a man does not happen to have a turn for the special learning of the place, he loses the incalculable advantages of such a training as I have endeavoured to describe. All the emulation, all the ambition, all the energy of his comrades is turned into the channels of classical and mathematical studies. Those are the studies which confer reputation, and which are rewarded with immediate emoluments and a prospective career. Political economy, history, jurisprudence, modern languages, modern literature, the immense field of natural science—success in all these is either poorly recompensed, or is recompensed not at all. If then we desire, in the words of the right hon. Gentleman the Secretary for War, to take the Universities as we find them, and give them increased usefulness, it must be our primary object to multiply the branches of knowledge which our Universities are to teach, but at the same time to see that those branches are taught as thoroughly and effectively as Greek and mathematics are taught at present. In order to attain this result it is necessary that every separate branch of study should have its fair share of Scholarships and Fellowships alloted to it, in order that it may acquire that prestige which those rich rewards bestow. The ask of seeing that justice is done in this respect is left to the Commissioners who are appointed under this Bill; and I hope that some hon. Friends of mine, who may think that in some remarks which I am going soon to make, I am taking a narrow view of education, will do me the credit of noticing that I express a cordial hope that those Commissioners will make the widest use of the powers committed to them under the 1st section of the 17th clause, and will endow most generously the studies which my hon. Friends take under their protection. Once make proficiency in natural science or jurisprudence the certain avenue to University position, fame, and emolument, and natural science and jurisprudence may safely be allowed to take care of themselves. You may be sure of this, that if every year the attention of dozens of clever and ambitious young men is directed towards any given study, that study will receive a natural and an healthy impulse which you will never obtain by this newfangled, and in my opinion most pernicious device of paying people of mature age comfortable incomes on condition that they will profess to be engaged in advancing science. I do not for a moment believe that Research will really be fostered by the proposals which have found some favour within these walls, and a great deal too much favour in certain circles outside them. Our object should be to induce young men to work, and not to encourage elderly men to idle; and that idleness, not, industry, would be the infallible product of such a system, as some pamphleteers are fatuous enough to imagine that Parliament will approve, may be established by a body of evidence so great and varied that I should never venture to ask the House to endure its recital. But I will entreat hon. Members, and most earnestly entreat them, not to be dazzled by fine names, and not to be afraid of being stigmatized as enemies of culture because they enter- tain a suspicion of this policy which is called, and erroneously called, the endowment of Research. I entreat hon. Gentleman, before they commit themselves upon this point, to take a lesson from our experience of the past. Up to 1854, which may be regarded as the epoch when our Universities became impregnated with the new ideas of public spirit and public duty, the resident Fellows at Oxford and Cambridge did not regard themselves as under any obligation to act as teachers and trainers of the students. They looked on themselves, and were looked on by the world—and on this point I confidently appeal to hon. Members who are conversant with the literature of the past century—as people who had a right to their position and income in their capacity of being men of learning. In fact, during a period of quite two centuries and a-half the College system of Oxford and Cambridge was one vast machinery for the endowment of literature; and with what result? During this prolonged period of time, when our Colleges swarmed with hundreds of men who had full leisure and a comfortable competence, on the ground that they were devoted to letters, how much of that literature which is the glory of our country has been produced by the resident Fellows of our Colleges? If we pass over the lighter departments of letters, and confine ourselves to solid and permanent work in prose, no names will sooner occur to recollection than those of Swift and Addison, Johnson and Burke, Coleridge and Southey. Where can you find six such prose writers among the many thousand resident Follows of the Universities? I will go further, and ask where will you find one? If we take our great names in philosophy, Locke's principal works were produced either in the pressure of administrative business, or the distress of political exile. Hume was not a resident Fellow, but first a diplomatist, and then an Under Secretary of State. Adam Smith was not a resident Fellow, but first a Scotch Professor, whose income depended upon the success of his lectures, and afterwards a travelling tutor. Let us go to Theology, and take the most conspicuous works of English divinity. Butler wrote his Analogy, not as a resident Fellow, but as a working parish priest. Warburton was a working parish priest when he wrote the Divine Legation. Taylor was a very successful and assiduous schoolmaster during the time that he was writing the Holy Living and the Holy Dying Hooker's Ecclesiastical Polity was composed when its author had upon him not only the cares of a parish, but the heavier burden of a scolding wife. And, Sir, to take a still stronger instance, there was one province of literature in which the Resident Fellows were bound to excel. It was from Cambridge and Oxford that the world had at any rate the right to expect histories of Greece and Rome that should be both erudite and readable. But what was the case? The best history of Greece was written not on the Cam or the Isis; not by any of those thousands of resident Fellows who over such a long period, had at their command the inexhaustible resources of the University libraries and of the unbroken leisure of University life; but, by a London banker, who had already, while a working Member of Parliament, obtained a wide reputation as the advocate of that system of secret voting, which, at the last General Election, led to such remarkable results upon the fortunes of the Political party which he adorned. The best history of Rome was written by a Gentleman who was first a captain of militia, and afterwards a Member of Parliament, and a Commissioner of the Board of Trade; and, indeed, when we remember the names of Gibbon and of Locke, it is no exaggeration to say that from the Board of Trade alone there has proceeded more first-class literature than has been produced by all the millions and millions of pounds which, generation after generation, were lavished at Oxford and Cambridge in maintaining a system which, till 30 years ago, could only be defended on the theory that it was the endowment of letters. But it will be said that this may be the case with literature, but that it is not the case with science. Sir, the conditions under which science is most successfully cultivated, are precisely the same as those which conduce to the successful pursuit of letters. Which are the greatest names in English physiology? Beyond all doubt they are those of Harvey, Hunter, and Jenner. During the progress of their great discoveries, they were not supported by endowments. If they had been supported by endowments, I believe those discoveries would never have been made. Harvey was sometimes a practising physician in London, and at other times a travelling physician; and hon. Gentlemen will recollect the anecdote of his presence at the battle of Edgehill, which indicates that his life as travelling physician was as hazardous as that of a war correspondent of modern days. Hunter was successively house-surgeon, and surgeon at St. George's Hospital, and deputy-surgeon to the Army. He practised; He took pupils, and one of those pupils was Jenner, who, himself, was first a practising surgeon, and afterwards practising physician. And, as it is with physiology, so it is with those who have extended the power of man over the material world, and who have made those vast and genuine discoveries by which the human race has profited so much, and our own country the most of all. Hargreaves, the inventor of the spinning jenny, was a working man; Arkwright began as a working man; James Watt made mathematical instruments with his own hands, until he rose first to be a practical engineer, and afterwards a manufacturer of machinery. What is Sir Joseph Whitworth? What is Sir William Armstrong? What was George Stephenson? It was on an endowment of 12s. a-week, as fireman of a stationary engine, that those powers of observation were sharpened to which the world owes the locomotive, and it was in the hard struggle of life that he perfected that marvellous common-sense which enabled him not only to found and organize our railway system, but which qualified him for a harder task still—that of discerning the limits of his own work, so that he actually spent the later years of his not too prolonged life in restraining the enthusiasm of his disciples and imitators. Zeal, thoroughness, perfect honesty of work, unsleeping accuracy and acuteness of observation, the clear and simple judgment which teaches a man to know the value of his own performance, as compared to the performances of others—these are qualities which are not of the cloister, but of the city and the factory. Whatever may be your theory about them, in practice these qualities are only found where mind clashes with mind, and where time is too precious to allow it to be wasted in trifling or dreaming. If you seek to obtain these qualities by a system of subsidies to researchers who will have no responsibilities, or to Professors who will have no pupils, depend upon it that you will be woefully mistaken. The Commissioners will easily find a better use for funds which they will have at their disposal. It is the genuine and laborious teachers at Oxford and Cambridge who demand your attention. The men whose class-rooms are full; whose every hour during their time is occupied; who have the confidence and the acquaintance of the young men; who manage the discipline of the Colleges, and inspire the education of the University. These men who, in exchange for a mere pittance, coupled with the obligation of celibacy, give to their calling talents which would make their fortunes at the Bar, or their fame in the Civil Service of India, come to you to ask you to make their calling a profession; to give them, in return for the devotion of their lives, fixed prospects, reasonable incomes, and the power of marrying without quitting their career. Now, Sir, arduous as the work of these gentlemen is, adequately paid as it certainly ought to be, it is work which occupies them only for half the year. The tutors and lecturers of our Colleges have now, and they always will have, ample leisure time at their command. They will have far more leisure time, let me tell my hon. Friends the Members for Maidstone (Sir John Lubbock) and the Elgin Burghs (Mr. Grant Duff), than they themselves have had to collect those stores of knowledge and experience which make me proud to be called their colleague. Well, Sir, if any of these professional teachers put their spare time to such a use that they prove themselves to be actuated by a steady and earnest passion for study and research, then let the University have the means of relieving the gentleman in question of a part of his teaching work. Let us follow the precedent which was set, and most wisely set, in the case of Mr. Max Müller. But whatever is done, let it be done most sparingly, most cautiously, under special circumstances, after special consideration, to meet a special case. Let the place be made for the man; but do not let a man have to be found in order to fill the place. We never ought to permit the creation of a number of posts, with large incomes attached; posts which must be occupied, whether there are men fit for them, or whether there are not. The Amendment which I have the honour to second is a protest against this House giving its sanction to the foundation of an hierarchy of sinecures and semi-sinecures—which, unless we can insert a clause in this Bill which shall radically alter human nature, can only end in academical jobbery and intellectual stagnation.


confessed that it had been with some regret that he had observed the Amendment which his noble Friend had placed upon the Paper, and which he had brought forward that night. He thought that, when the House had a considerable measure to discuss, and when they had arrived at the last stage at which, before dealing with its details, they could discuss the whole scope and character of that measure, it was a very undesirable proceeding to single out one particular detail among many, and embody one's opinion thereupon in an Amendment upon the Speaker's leaving the Chair. Such a course had certainly one advantage—namely, that it enabled the Gentleman who adopted it to make a particular speech at a particular moment; but, among many counterbalancing disadvantages there was this one—that even those who might agree with the Mover of the Amendment as to his particular point might feel bound to vote against him, because otherwise they might prejudice and imperil the Bill. And the noble Lord had, indeed, done worse than select a detail of the Bill. He had only fastened upon one particular thing, which might or might not be an incidental result of the passing of this Bill; and with respect to that particular thing offered the House an abstract Resolution, which appeared to him (Mr. Knatch-bull-Hugessen) entirely out of place. As his noble Friend would certainly not divide, and there could be no practical result from his Amendment, he could not help saying, if he might venture to say so without offence, that the Amendment of his noble Friend appeared to him something much better suited to the Oxford or Cambridge debating societies than to the more practical arena of the House of Commons. He granted that it would not be so under different circumstances. If the Government had thought fit to proceed by Resolution in this matter—if they had said—"We will ask the House to affirm certain propositions, which shall be in the form of directions to the Commissioners as to the principles upon which they should proceed in dealing with College property and College statutes—what they should do, and what they should refrain from doing"—then the noble Lord's proposition would have been relevant and apposite. But, inasmuch as the Government had taken quite a different course, and had proposed to give broad and almost boundless powers to the Commissioners to do everything, it appeared to him idle to occupy the time of the House in the discussion of the question whether or not it was desirable that in one particular branch of their action they should move to the right hand or to the left. He declined, therefore, to be debarred by his noble Friend's course from his right of making some observations upon the general features of this Bill. And yet, out of respect to the ability of the two speeches just delivered, he would say one word upon their particular topic, if only to excuse himself from entering more closely into it. It seemed to him that the question of the Professoriate was essentially one rather for Commissioners than for the House of Commons. He was inclined to think that some extension of the system might be desirable; but what precise form it should take—whether it should be large or not, and what special branches of learning it should embrace—these he held to be questions which could only be decided by men upon the spot, carefully inquiring into the merits and the demerits, the advantages and the shortcomings of the present system—calling to their aid men well versed in the art of tuition and skilled in University education—and then, upon a review of the whole case, judging upon a fair balance of evidence what was the best course to be adopted in the interests of the Universities and of those for whose education the Universities existed. The argument of his hon. Friend who had just sat down was not so much against the Professoriate as against all University endowments, and it went to show that persons could get a very good education without going to the University at all, and that distinction in arts and in inventions was not confined to University men. He quite agreed with his hon. Friend. He would further observe upon this point— especially as it would again be discussed in Committee—that in any extension of the Professoriate He would lay down two canons. First—that if it was to be useful, it must be made with the concurrence and good-will of the Colleges, and not in spite of them. If they were willing to engraft it upon their educational system it might succeed; but if it was forced upon them against their will, nothing but failure would ensue. Secondly—he would say that an extension of the Professoriate need not, ought not, and must not be made, under any circumstances, at the expense of that system of tutorial teaching in Colleges which had proved of such immense advantage to University education. And now he would offer a few remarks upon the general scope and character of the Bill. He owned that he had been surprised at the equanimity and even approbation by which it had been received by the great Party opposite. It was not so in 1854, although the Bill then introduced was of a much more gentle character. The Preamble of that Bill had stated that it was "desirable for the advancement of religion and learning to give greater powers to the Colleges and Universities to alter their statutes," and so forth. Well, that Bill was not received with complete confidence. A noble Friend of his (Mr. Knatchbull-Hugessen's), who now occupied a prominent position in the Government of which he was one of the most respected Members, made his maiden speech upon that Bill. He "deeply regretted that no Member of weight would divide against the second reading;" He protested against "squandering the endowments of the various founders;" and, with a spirit which was really prophetic, foretold that "some future Ministry, with the word Conservative on its lips, but destruction in its hands, would drive home the wedge now introduced," and further attack these endowments. There was another Gentleman who said upon the same occasion that "the portion of the Bill which dealt with the property of the Colleges was neither more nor less than an appropriation clause," and would lead to further attacks on that property. The two speakers to whom he referred were Lord Salisbury and Lord Beaconsfield, and it seemed as if they were now about to fulfil their own prophecies. For this Bill had a much more severe character than that of 1854. Under its provisions Colleges might be "required" against their will to contribute from their property to University purposes — their Fellowships and emoluments might be attached to University offices—the tenure of their Fellowships might be changed; their statutes altered and amended until there was nothing left of them, and all at the bidding of seven Gentlemen appointed by Parliament. If this had been proposed a few years ago by Gentlemen now sitting on that (the Opposition) side of the House, it would have awakened the wildest dismay and the most profound disgust in every well-regulated Conservative breast. He (Mr. Knatchbull-Hugessen) fancied he heard the loud voice of the Secretary at War, declaiming in vehement tones, and amid the ringing cheers of his Friends behind him, denouncing it as a measure fraught with the principles of spoliation, confiscation, and every other "ation" which could emphasize his opposition. But a wonderful change had come over the spirit of the dreams of hon. Gentlemen opposite. That which would have been wild, wicked, and revolutionary in the hands of a Liberal Ministry, was discovered, in the hands of a Tory Administration, to be nothing more than a wise and salutary measure of reform. He had pondered deeply over the mystery of this change, and thought he had solved the problem. The approbation of the Party opposite was based upon their confidence in the names of those Commissioners in whom such large powers were to be vested. He would say nothing about the Cambridge Commissioners, because he knew but little of that University. But with regard to the Oxford Commission, he thought the Conservative confidence fully justified, for no one could look at the names which were to compose that Commission without feeling at once that from them no rash or hasty changes were to be feared, and no ruthless interference either with College property or with College prejudices to be apprehended. In fact, when the Commissioners had finished their labours, it was probable that no one would be found to say that they had done those things which they ought not to have done, although it was possible there might be a whisper to the effect that they had left undone those things which they ought to have done. He (Mr. Knatchbull-Hugessen) discerned an element of danger in that very constitution of the Committee which gave confidence to hon. Gentlemen on the other side of the House. For, if these Commissioners were cautious where courage was necessary, if they trod lightly upon the threshold of Reform where a bold step in advance was desirable, and if they bathed and bandaged wounds which required the keen knife and fearless hand of the skilful operator, the result might be that they would leave work for future Parliaments and future Commissioners which might have to be done at a moment when public opinion was less favourable to the Universities than at present. The criticism passed upon the names in the Bill of last year by his right hon. Friend the Member for the City of London obviated the necessity of his saying more than a few words upon that head. The first name was one which commanded universal respect—namely, that of Lord Selborne. Lord Selborne had two claims upon his (Mr. Knatch-bull-Hugessen's) respect—one in the fact of his having held high office under the last Government, the other, which he felt even more strongly, in the circumstance of his being a member and fellow of his own old College. Speaking as a Liberal and reformer, He could not help saying, however—if he might do so without offence — that there was about the Liberalism of his noble and learned Friend an ecclesiastical tinge, so to speak, which made it doubtful whether he could be considered an exact representative of Liberal opinion upon those particular matters with which he would have to deal as a Commissioner. The class of questions which would come before him touched upon the only points in which he had sometimes differed from the Liberal Party; and he (Mr. Knatchbull-Hugessen) considered him as bringing to the Commission at least as much of a Conservative as a Liberal element. Still, he could not view otherwise than with a satisfaction, which would be generally shared, the presence upon the Commission of a man of such high character and ability as his noble and learned Friend, and he regarded his nomination by the present Government with the more pleasure as a tacit acknowledgment on their part of their sense of the fatuous folly of which the University—or rather the non-resident portion — had once been guilty in throwing away the opportunity of sending so eminent a man to Parliament as their representative. There was only one other name to which he felt bound to make allusion for a special reason, although he feared he should appear to be speaking by anticipation against an Amendment to be moved by his noble Friend (the Marquess of Hartington) for the appointment of the Head of St. John's, Cambridge. The name he referred to was that of Dr. Bellamy, the Head of St. John's College, Oxford. Dr. Bellamy was an excellent and amiable man. If he were not so he would be au unworthy son of his father, the former master of Merchant Taylor's School, who possessed a rare combination of all the good qualities which made human nature excellent. The House would therefore understand that he (Mr. Knatchbull-Hugessen) did not object to Dr. Bellamy upon any personal grounds. He would be ashamed of himself if he objected upon any political grounds. But he wished to put it to the House that the Head of a College ought not to be upon this Commission. The Head of a College was specially bound to protect the property of that College against all comers, whether they wished to touch it for University purposes or for any other reason. The Head of a College ought not, therefore, to be upon a Commission, the chief object of which was to overhaul College property. Moreover, the objection was still more grave if the Bill was to pass as it stood. The Head of St. John's College would have three of his own Fellows added to the Commission when they came to deal with his College property. He had only to gain over one of his six brother Commissioners under this Bill in order to ensure that no change objected to by his College would be carried, save, in any event, by so small a majority as to deprive the decision of the Commission of much of its weight. St. John's was one of the richest Colleges in Oxford, and there might be questions between it and other Colleges in which it would have an undue advantage by being represented by its Head upon the Commission. Taking up the Returns, for instance, he found under the head of expenditure, that while Magdalen contributed £1,200 a-year to University Professors, St. John's contributed nothing. The point might be easily susceptible of explanation; but if upon points between College and College St. John's had the advantage of the presence of its Head upon the Commission, decisions favourable to its views might not give general satisfaction. In view of this state of things, he (Mr. Knatchbull-Hugessen) had given Notice of Amendments which should make the representatives of the Colleges chosen under the Bill, assessors and not Commissioners; and although he would not for a moment propose to omit the name of Dr. Bellamy from the Commission, he hoped that the Commission might be enlarged by the addition of some of those names which were about to be proposed by some of his hon. Friends near him. But when he was speaking of the possible extent of alterations which might be, or which ought to be, recommended or required by the Commissioners under this Bill, he wished to protest against the tone of certain observations which had been made with respect to what Oxford had done for herself, and what the Colleges had done for themselves, during the last quarter of a century. It was with the deepest regret that he had heard it said that the standard for a degree at Oxford was absolutely low. He must venture to express very strongly an entirely contrary opinion. He had been assured by those who were fully competent to speak upon this subject that a degree at Oxford was at that moment at least as difficult as any other in the United Kingdom, and there was no doubt that the standard had been considerably raised since 1853. Well—let them deal with this question at close quarters. There were three kinds of Undergraduates at Oxford—those who read for and obtained honours, those who took a pass degree, and those who left the University without any degree at all. The latter constituted but a small proportion of the whole number, and considerably more than half of the whole Undergraduate University read for honours. Now, reading for honours, as a matter of fact, implied reading more and reading harder than if you read for a pass; and anyone who asked him to believe the contrary, asked him to believe that which a long and continuous knowledge of Undergraduate life at Oxford taught him to be contrary to the facts. A comparison of the number of men who had come out first, second, third, or fourth class respectively, in recent years, would show a considerable majority in the three first; and no one who had looked into the question could doubt that the number of Undergraduates who now-a-days read for honours, was much greater in proportion than it was 20 years ago. Now, if that was a desirable state of things, to whose action was it attributable? Why, to the action of the Colleges themselves, and to the tutors within those Colleges. It was well-known that the tutors, as a rule, were always urging their pupils to read for honours, and more than that, several of the Colleges, and among them notably two of the very best—University and Balliol—would only admit young men within their walls upon the express understanding that they would read for honours. Those Colleges stood high in public estimation—admission into them was eagerly sought; and, as far as any one could see, there seemed no probability whatever that in the time to come there would be any lack of young men ready to strive for the highest University distinctions. But, at this point, he wished the House of Commons to put this question to themselves—What was it that they desired Oxford to be? If they wished it to be nothing more nor less than a manufactory of scholars, in which the highest perfection in scholarship was to be obtained, then, by all means, raise the standard of their degrees and insure that nothing but the purest gold of scholarship should pass through your academical crucible. But the inevitable result would be that they would drive away from Oxford, and send to other seminaries of inferior character, a vast number of young men who would not be able to face the severity of your ordeal. Was that desirable? Was that wise? Was that the legitimate and only purpose of their English Universities? Oxford — and Cambridge too—had hitherto been something more than mere manufactories of scholars — they had been the great halting-places of the youth of England upon their passage from the public schools of England to their entrance upon the active business of life. The three years of University life in which a young man, freed from the closer and stricter discipline of school, emerged into life still under some controlling discipline, and gradually felt the strength of his wings before he was altogether obliged to fly alone—those years, he said, had been of inestimable advantage to many and many a young man who had never aspired to University honours; and thousands of young men, reading only for an ordinary or pass degree, had thereby acquired an amount of knowledge and a power of thought and habit of study, which had stood them in good stead in after life. He (Mr. Knatchbull-Hugessen) spoke feelingly upon the subject, for he represented the Passmen that night, and after his obligations to Eton, he owed everything to Oxford and to Oxford teaching. And he could not understand or sympathize with men who forgot what they owed to their public school and their University. It gave him the deepest pain and sorrow when he heard of men who had benefited much by their connection with Eton, for instance, taking opportunities to institute comparisons, unnecessary, and, he must add, unjust, between Eton and other schools, to the disparagement and disadvantage of Eton, and when he heard others speaking of Oxford, as if Oxford had done nothing to adapt herself to the spirit of the times. The effect upon him was not only to give him pain and sorrow, but to stimulate and increase the gratitude and affection which he should always entertain towards Eton and Oxford. The condition of things which had hitherto prevailed at Oxford and Cambridge, had caused associations to spring up between the youth of England and the English Universities which had been equally creditable and advantageous to both. Did the House wish to put an end to this state of things by raising the standard of the degree so high as to deter great numbers from the attempt to obtain it? Moreover, it was not the class which constituted the one great good to be gained at Oxford. He had recently seen a letter of which he had intended to read a portion to the House, but, having omitted to bring it with him, he must quote from memory. It was from a tutor of one of the Colleges at Oxford to a young man of exemplary and excellent character, just now about to go into the schools, and who, as the tutor thought, was too anxious about his class. The tutor began by saying that, as far as the College authorities were concerned, this young man, by his con- duct and example, had done such good work for the College, that it would not grudge it if he left without taking any class at all. But he went on to say —and he (Mr. Knatchbull-Hugessen) thought the words full of good sense—that it was the education, and not the class, for which a young man came to Oxford—that the class was only the evidence to show that good work had been done; that as in every match there was always luck, so there was luck in the class-list, and that there was something more valuable than a class to be gained in an University career. He quite agreed with this opinion; and if he thought that the result of this Bill would be to heighten the standard of degrees at Oxford, so as to lessen the number of young men who would seek an University education, he would not be found among its supporters. Having stated generally that Oxford had done much for herself, he wished to give the House a particular instance within his own personal knowledge. He had kept up his connection with Oxford—he was frequently there, and he felt it a duty to make himself personally acquainted with matters of which he spoke in that House. He wished to speak of his own old College, Magdalen. He was sorry to say it was nearly 30 years since he first went to Oxford, and nearly 27 years since He took his degree. He was one of a class which ought never to have existed—the class of gentleman commoners. At that time there were 4 or 5 gentleman commoners and 12 or 15 undergraduate scholars or demies. He was bound to say that the gentleman commoners, though pleasant enough as companions, did very little good to themselves, and probably considerable harm to the scholars. They lived idle, careless lives; and, during his time, he (Mr. Knatchbull-Hugessen) was the only one of them who took a degree at all. But what had happened since? Very shortly after he left the University—he hoped the House would not trace any connection between the two events—the order of gentleman commoners was abolished. If you went to Magdalen now, you found, under the able government of the learned, amiable, and excellent President, Dr. Bulley, about 100 Undergraduates belonging to Magdalen, commoners and scholars, an efficient staff of tutors, and a fair quota of candidates for honours regularly supplied to the schools. Moreover, you had this fact—that the Undergraduates at Magdalen could, and did, live comfortably at a rate which, compared with the other Colleges of the University, was cheaper than many, and, he believed, as cheap as any of them. But what had Magdalen really done? She abolished gentleman commoners before the first University Bill. She had taken commoners as he had mentioned. She had raised the stipend of her scholars from £75—the minimum required by her ordinance—to £100. She had thrown open her clerkships and choristerships to public competition. She had improved her three grammar schools—at Oxford, Brackley, and Waynflete—and raised the stipend of the Masters. The Magdalen School, indeed, had furnished more youths who had obtained University distinctions than almost any similar school in the country. All this she had done without compulsion. Then, as regarded Professorships. By her ordinance Magdalen was to furnish four Professorships—two at once, and two "ultimately." Anticipating that indefinite time, Magdalen had offered to provide the two other Professorships after 1879, increasing their value by annexing to them a Fellowship, and suggesting that instead of "mineralogy" and "physical geography," they should deal with subjects more suitable to the present requirements of the University. Then, again, as to "unattached students." The Master of Balliol, always foremost in works of reform and improvement, had lately a notice for discussion by the Hebdomadal Council "that provision be made for the tuition of the unattached students, and for buildings appropriated to their use." This notice had been deferred; but it had been anticipated by Magdalen. In 1873, after the report of a College Committee, Magdalen resolved that two lecturers to the unattached students should be appointed at £200 a-year each. The delegates of unattached students recognized this as a "very liberal and thoughtful offer on the part of Magdalen College, but declined it on the ground that they did not wish to seem to place their students upon an eleemosynary footing." Failing this plan, Magdalen had been thrown back upon her own resources, and at this moment was forming plans for aiding poor scholars and increasing generally her educational efficiency. What Magdalen had done, other Colleges doubtless had done, or were willing to do, according to their powers of improvement, and his object in mentioning what had been done at Magdalen was to show that there existed a willing spirit on the part of the Colleges to carry out necessary reforms. They were naturally desirous, however, to do a great deal for themselves; and he therefore hailed with satisfaction the words of the 16th clause, which provided that in the proceedings of the Commissioners "regard should first be had to the wants of the several Colleges themselves for educational and other Collegiate purposes." Whether the Commission was increased or not, they would have to deal with willing agencies in their great work. It might be said to him, if everything had been going on so well—"Why do you want any University Bill at all?" The question was natural, but his answer would be twofold. First, that although much had been done, more required to be done; and secondly, that to do it well and effectually, legislative assistance was required. And it was well for the Universities that these reforms should be carried out in the broad light of day, under a Parliamentary Commission, so that public opinion should see and approve what was done. As far as he (Mr. Knatchbull-Hugessen) was concerned, he believed that, with regard to many Colleges at Oxford, this would not be a compelling, but an enabling measure, and that it would not be the Commissioners who would compel the College authorities, but the College authorities who would urge forward the Commissioners upon the path of reform. And in spite of an expression which recently fell from the right hon. Gentleman the Chancellor of the Exchequer, he gladly hailed his support of a Bill which brought the national power to bear upon College property. The expression to which he alluded was uttered when his right hon. Friend spoke of the duty of the Commissioners being with regard to domestic matters. In his (Mr. Knatchbull-Hugessen's) opinion—and, he ventured to say, in the opinion of all those who sat around him—this was not a domestic, but a national matter—they desired to see the Universities more truly national—in the scope of their influence, in the classes upon whom that influence should be brought to bear, and in the removal of restrictions which now limited their action as National Institutions. And when his right hon. Friend persuaded his Friends to support this measure which dealt with College property, he felt that his advocacy of the Bill was only part of the task which, in common with the noble Earl at the head of the Government, he was performing with marked ability—namely, the task of teaching the Members of the great Party behind him that they could be perfectly good Tories after they had abjured, one by one, all the old principles of Toryism. He wished his right hon. Friend "God speed" in the task. He rejoiced to see a healthy tone of progress pervade every school of English political life. He congratulated hon. Gentlemen opposite on their support of a Bill which would forward the application of College property to purposes of University education; and He hoped and believed that the ultimate result of that Bill would be that the resources both of Colleges and Universities would be developed; that the traditions of exclusiveness and restriction would die away and be forgotten; and that Oxford and Cambridge, more and more imbued with a large, broad, liberal, and national spirit, would be known henceforward more than ever as National Institutions, closely identified and intimately associated with all that tended to guide and lead forward the youth of England upon the path of enlightened and progressive improvement.


said, he was very glad to hear that part of the speech of the right hon. Gentleman in which he vindicated the credit of Oxford examinations and the intelligence of pass-men from the attack of his right hon. Friend the Member for the University of London. He was also pleased to hear him vindicate the fair fame of Magdalen, which had appointed lecturers and made provision for unattached students. But he could not help thinking that, after all, the speech was open to the observation which the right hon. Gentleman had applied to some others, that it was more fitted for a debating society than for the House of Commons. It was certainly by no means calculated to advance the measure when made on the Question that the Speaker do leave the Chair. He (Mr. Mowbray) recollected that happened in 1851. A discussion arose on the Bill going into Committee on the 19th April, and it was not until the end of June that the labours of the House on the Bill came to an end. He was prepared to assent to both propositions of his noble Friend the Member for Bury St. Edmund's; but they included subjects which could be most fitly considered in Committee, and it would be a great misfortune to press the Amendment at present. He never regarded it as the object of the Bill to provide for more than a moderate increase of the Professoriate, but they were indebted to the noble Lord for calling attention to the great increase which had been suggested. Since 1854, at Oxford the staff had been increased to 41 Professors and 14 assistants and readers, and it had been suggested that there should be 37 new Professors, and that the salaries should be raised until the aggregate income required would be £47,000, which was equivalent to the interest on a capital of £1,200,000. He was desirous that the main object of the Bill should be carried out. Therefore, he implored the House that they might be allowed as soon as possible to go into Committee, when the details of the Bill might be so modified as to render it acceptable to all parties. The speeches that had been made were appropriate to that stage, and the consideration of the details involved in the clauses.


Sir, the speeches of my right hon. Friend who has just sat down and of my right hon. Friend the Member for Sandwich (Mr. Knatchbull-Hugessen), are together the best vindication that could have been offered for the Motion which has been put upon the Paper by the noble Lord. I do not say that they would justify him in proceeding to a division, of which he has not given us a sign, and which the assurances which we have received from the Treasury Bench will render unnecessary. Now, who has raised this question of a large increase of the Professoriate? Inside this House it has only appeared fitfully and at long intervals for the last two Sessions; but outside the House, at Cambridge, still more at Oxford, in London in the daily and weekly newspapers, in the smoking rooms of the Clubs, in combination, and in common rooms, it has been a common topic of discussion, while we all know that a large and an inordinate increase of the Professoriate is demanded by a party, not very numerous, but respectable and powerful by reason of the zeal, energy, and genius of those who belong to it. My right hon. Friend the Member for Sandwich says — "Why raise this question now? The Commissioners are omnipotent!" That is the very reason why we should raise the question. If the Commissioners are to be all-powerful, I trust that they may also be all-wise—at least, wise within the ordinary limits that may be anticipated from an ex-Chancellor, a Head of a House, and Senior Wranglers, Judges, and other eminent individuals. Being Englishmen, and not Germans or French, they will, of course, proceed to legislate according to practical circumstances and the feeling of the country, according to what has already been done, and not according to their own à priori prepossessions. And what, I ask, can be so valuable as an instruction to the Commission, so to speak, or rather an expression of opinion on the part of this House, elicited in one of those quiet discussions which are apt to take place before you, Sir, leave the Chair—discussions on which the fate of a Bill does not turn, and which are free from that Party heat which so sorely besets debates on the second reading of Bills introduced by a Government? Now, though my right hon. Friend has put in a pro formâ protest against the Motion of the noble Lord, his speech was the best vindication I have yet heard for again opening this question. The Motion has elicited from him what he terms his "two canons;" which I accept and subscribe to with hearty assent and consent. But for the Motion of my noble Friend he might have had to bring forward those canons at some dead hour of the Committee, 9 or 10 at night, when a mere handful of Members were present, and the debates were only summarised in the Gallery. Thanks to the Motion of my noble Friend, we have been enabled to hear from the opposite bench those sound, moderate, and able arguments against the extravagances of the Research claim from the right hon. Member for Sandwich. With some inconsistency, however, after dwelling at some length on the boundless powers of the Commissioners, when he reached the close of his speech my right hon. Friend forgot what he had said at the beginning, and told us that in face of those boundless powers with which he credited the Commissioners, it was, after all, only an enabling Bill. But when, having described it as only an enabling Bill, he went on to tax us with abandoning our Toryism by giving it our support, he not only justifies our action, but he gives by implication the best definition of what are the true principles of Toryism. Toryism is "enabling" people to do what is right for themselves, and not dictating it to them in virtue of your own enlightenment. I accept this Bill, therefore, as an enabling Bill, and I look to this its character as the best vindication of us Tories for giving it our approval. Then my right hon. Friend played a little upon "approbation" and "cordial approbation." I give the Bill my "approbation" now—it may have my "cordial approbation" or not, when I have seen how my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for War deals with the various proposals made in Committee, and when I see the form in which the Bill leaves Committee. In making this reservation, however, I trust and believe that the Government, who have conducted the measure so far with so much temper and moderation, will not fail at the critical period. Then, my right hon. Friend opposite made reference to the endowment of Research, which we know has been the watchword of an extreme party in the Universities. All of us who take any interest in this question must have read more or less of that clever volume of essays which Mr. Mark Patti-son of Jesus College, Oxford, has published. In the face of that manifesto it is idle to complain of those who have felt some concern when the Government brought forward a measure comprising proposals for the endowment of Research, without any very definite limitations of their scope. Into that question, however, I shall enter more fully when we get into Committee; and I think I shall be able to show, if necessary, that this cry for the endowment of Research is based on ignorance of the shape into which the growth of civilization has cast our Universities. In the Middle Ages, to which so frequent an appeal is made by the Research party, the Universities, as schools of progressive learning, were all in all. In the present age we have Research, properly so called, relegated to special organizations, and so there are Royal Societies, Museums, and other institutions of the kind, preferentially located in the capital, as the spot in which needful experiments and investigations can most conveniently take place, while the Universities have become, so to speak, assimilating bodies—those which convey the researches of the Academies as food into the minds of the students. So much, then, as to the last years' phase of the discussion. I am glad to pass from it, and to believe that we have not to dissect the endowment of Research as the main practical question of debate. Last Session we might have had to do so; but men's minds are clearer now, and many things have happened since then. My right hon. Friend next dwelt upon the constitution of the Commission, and I must say that he seems rather hard to please. His chief grievance appears to have been that a Gentleman who had belonged to the Government of which he himself was a Member had been selected as Chairman of the Oxford Commission. Why, if Lord Selborne had been a thoroughgoing, red-hot old Tory to the backbone my right hon. Friend could not have criticized him with more apparent contempt. Then he said, with regard to Dr. Bellamy, the Head of St. John's College, Oxford, that, whatever might be his merits, from the fact of his being the Head of a College, he was not well fitted to be on this Commission. I noted the words of my right hon. Friend at the moment he uttered them, and I take for granted that the argument which he has used against the retention of the Head of St. John's College, Oxford, on the Commission, will influence him to vote against his noble Leader (the Marquess of Hartington) when he comes to propose that Dr. Bateson, the Head of St. John's College, Cambridge, shall be added to the Cambridge Commission. For whatever is true officially of Dr. Bellamy, of St. John's College, Oxford, a most distinguished man, must be equally true of Dr. Bateson, of St. John's College, Cambridge, who also is equally a very eminent man. I do not argue for or against either Commission, but there must be one measure for both, with those who make a principle of the presence or the absence of Heads of Houses on it, as I decline to do. If you object to the Head of St. John's, Oxford, why not do so to the Head of St. John's, Cambridge? Then, my right hon. Friend harked back to the days of his own Undergraduateship, and tells us that he had been a gentleman commoner, and that gentlemen commoners have since been abolished, as if the once existence of that class of men was in some way an argument for an extensive reform of the Universities. But what has that to do with the question? I, too, was a Fellow Commoner at Cambridge with the late Lord Lyttelton—the senior classic of his year —also with Mr. Bouverie, whose career at Trinity College was one of great distinction. Before my time the present Chancellor of Cambridge, the Duke of Devonshire, who was almost Senior Wrangler, was a Fellow Commoner. In later years Lord Rayleigh, another of the Cambridge Commissioners, also Senior Wrangler, was of the same order. My hon. Friend the Member for the Border Burghs (Mr. Trevelyan) much weakened his argument by that picturesque catalogue of members of the Board of Trade and other public bodies who, though unendowed, had greatly distinguished themselves in the field of literature. This catalogue, taken as an argument, was weak, for it proceeded on the principle of recapitulating all our most eminent men who were not resident University men, and of omitting those who were; and I could not help thinking, when he said that the great History of Greece had come from Lombard Street and the History of Rome from the Board of Trade, that he might have added that the great History of England had come from the pen of a University man, who was Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge.


But he was not a Resident Fellow; that was my argument.


But the hon. Member might have turned his thoughts no further than to the chapel of that great College to which we both belonged, and have recollected that that one apartment contained the remains or the memorials of Newton, of Barrow, of Bentley, of Porson, of Whewell, of Sedgwick; all Trinity men; all residents in the University; and all great names in English literature. Now, my right hon. Friend the Member for the sister University has invited us to go into Committee; and, I say, let us go into Committee. But as this question has been wisely raised by my noble Friend, we should not be doing justice to it; we should rather be misunderstood by those in the country whose minds have been exercised—and justly exercised—by the extravagant theories and pretensions of the Professoriate party, if we did not appeal to the Government, as I do now, to assure us, as I am confident they will do, that anything like compliance with the claims of these ideologists is the last thing they are thinking of either in the choice of Commissioners or in the scope which they forecast for the Bill. Let us be told that, though not so much for our own comfort and consolation as for that of the large body of University men out-of-doors who will look at the columns of the papers to-morrow morning with peculiar interest. Then, my noble Friend may safely withdraw his Motion, and we may proceed to discuss the clauses of the measure.


said, he had not intended to take any part in the debate, but the observations of his hon. Friend the Member for the Border Burghs (Mr. Trevelyan) obliged him to say a few words. His hon. Friend was entirely mistaken if he supposed him to have anything in common with those of whom he spoke as purposing to devote a large part of the revenues of the University to paying comfortable incomes to men of mature age for "saying" that they were prosecuting science. The two chief University reforms which he had advocated were — first, that the education given should be wider and more in accordance with modern requirements; and, secondly, that it should be possible to obtain at Oxford instruction in all those subjects in which instruction could be obtained at the other great Universities of the world. That would, no doubt, be an indirect endowment of research, but surely it was not one to which his hon. Friend would object. He was quite sure he would not object to anything of the kind, and that there was little or no difference of opinion between them. As for the noble Lord the Member for Bury St. Edmund's (Lord Francis Hervey), he hailed him, too, as an ally, but in a very different way. The hon. Member for the Border Burghs made a serious speech, as he always did. The noble Lord's little deliverance, which might have won him what the French call a succès d' estime if delivered as a maiden speech at the "Union," could be best answered by an anecdote. There was a temperance lecturer who travelled about the country with his brother. An old acquaintance met the pair in a town of the North of England, and said to the brother—"I understand William is coming to lecture about temperance; but what are you doing here?"

Oh! "said the man, "I travel with my brother as the shocking example.' Now, the noble Lord was his "shocking example." He could not wish for a better. He never opened his mouth without showing what a poor, schoolboy sort of training might be sometimes given by a great school and by a great College in a great University. If this question of the reform of the Universities were one which was susceptible of treatment at public meetings, he should be delighted to pay the noble Lord something handsome to be allowed to carry him about as his "shocking example." But it was not worth spending more time over the noble Lord, and he rose chiefly to make it clear to his hon. Friend the Member for the Border Burghs that there was little difference, if any, between their respective views, and he trusted that in Committee they would be found voting together on all occasions.


said, he was desirous of recalling the attention of the House to the immediate question before it. It appeared to him that the whole discussion was somewhat unreal, whilst they confined themselves to this small abstract question, and that they ought to recollect that the Colleges at the present time were in a state of considerable and anxious suspense as to the result of their deliberations upon the general principles of the Bill itself. During the last few years the Colleges had been anxious in providing their deficiencies with regard to the Professors, and in doing so to select gentlemen with the best qualifications. Since the Bill had been read a second time the study of Biology had been added by two of the Colleges of Cambridge, and that was a proof that the authorities of the Universities were anxious to consult the wishes of those who desired the enlargement of the course of study. The Colleges would contribute in a large degree towards the required funds, and they wished to know how the money was to be spent. They wished to be represented in that body which would have to distribute the funds, and it was well worth considering how such a body could be framed as would satisfy the natural fears of those bodies who would be called on to contribute, and be heard in the distribution of their property; and this he said, as from his official position he could not take part in any discussion which might arise in Committee.


said, that as he had already protested in vain against dealing with this question without previous investigation, he would go no further into that point, but he wanted to draw the attention of the House to the practical working of the measure. The object of the Bill was mainly to take away the administration of large sums of money from one class of corporation and give it to another. Looking at it in that simple point of view, he wished to put it to the House as a matter well worthy of their consideration, how the money that was to be taken away was now employed, and how far they could judge it would be better employed when it reached its new destination, so that they might see whether the Bill would really or not tend to the advancement of learning and knowledge. The revenue of the Colleges were mainly expended in maintaining the fabrics, and keeping up their estates, and doing something towards giving assistance to tuition, and when all those purposes were exhausted they were devoted to the foundation of Scholarships and Fellowships. A good deal might, of course, be said against spending so much money as was spent in that way; but an immense deal more might be said in its favour. It was no doubt true that much money was devoted to sinecures; but then that was an essential condition of their being prizes. A man would not work and labour to get a thing if he was still to work when he had attained it; and he could imagine no money being better spent in the Universities than that which was devoted to Fellowships and Scholarships. They could, however, increase the number of Professorships ad infinitum, and yet produce nothing more than they had at present; but the present system had the advantage of doing what it professed to do. In the first place, it was singularly effective, producing competi- tion, exertion, and knowledge. Another advantage of the existing system was that not merely did the money devoted to Scholarships find its way into the hands of deserving persons who worked hard for it, but it enabled many industrious men who were poor to go to the University, and thus opened to them careers which raised them out of the position in which circumstances had placed them. Then as to Fellowships—they were apt to grumble at them as sinecures, but it was a system which raised the standard of acquirement by encouraging men to compete for prizes which enabled them to enter professions in which they might win distinction, and it did so just at the moment when they needed such aid and encouragement. It enabled a young man to take his first step in life, always the most difficult step, and it gave that great help to those who best deserved it, and he could not imagine any way in which money could be better expended. And what was to be done under the Bill which was to be so much more beneficial in the aiding of science and literature and the promotion of merit? The money required to carry out the objects of the Bill must be taken mainly from Fellowships and Scholarships. It was not very easy to say what was to be done with this money in future. The Preamble of the Bill declared that— The revenues of the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge are not adequate to the full discharge of the duties incumbent upon them respectively. It was desirable and convenient, he thought, that the House should know what those duties were. The Preamble further stated that— It is therefore expedient that provision be made for enabling or requiring the Colleges in the respective University to contribute more largely out of their revenues to University purposes, especially with a view to further and better instruction in art, science, and other branches of learning, where the same are not adequately taught in the Universities. Did this mean by the Universities or by the Colleges of which the Universities were composed? because no such thing as efficient teaching by the Universities had an existence. Efficient teaching was given by the Colleges, and he protested against a proposal to take money from the Colleges, which did much, in order to give it to the Universities, which did nothing. In the time of Abelard and Duns Scotus, when there was no printing, men repaired to the Universities in order to sit at the feet of learned men who had studied all branches of knowledge, but now printed books had to a very great extent superseded Professors, and he wished to know what prospect there was of any good being done by transferring the money from the Colleges to the Universities. The right hon. Gentleman the Member for the -University of Oxford (Mr. Mow-bray) had stated that there were 41 Professors in the University which he represented, but they taught next to nothing. Did they want more? What was required was not an increase in the number of the Professoriate, but a reform in the management and a re-organization of the present very ample staff. It was not likely that at Oxford, where the system consisted of examinations and the necessary preparations for them, men would go to the Professors when they had their College tutors and any number of private tutors and coaches who were available. What peculiar charm lay in the word University that should induce Parliament to further endow institutions bearing the name? What had the Universities done; and what might and ought they to have done? They ought to have a very strict examination for all candidates desiring admission. They had no such thing as a matter of fact; and this necessarily tended to drag down the system of teaching, for no one could defend a state of things under which men of eminent learning were engaged in imparting knowledge which ought to have been given in elementary schools. If a strict preliminary examination were insisted upon, it would become more necessary for the managers of the schools which supplied students to the Universities, for their own credit's sake, to properly prepare the pupils who desired to pass into the Universities. His right hon. Friend the Member for Sandwich (Mr. Knatchbull-Hugessen) was displeased with him for having described the degrees at Oxford as disgracefully low. Notwithstanding this, he ventured to repeat the statement, and to cite, as an authority in support of what he said, Mr. Mark Pattison, of Lincoln College, who had made it clear that the teaching in the Universities was simply disgraceful; and, in conclusion, he ventured to say that the principle on which the Bill was based was wrong in that it would have the effect of taking money which was now admirably expended and employing it in circumstances under which it could not possibly retain its usefulness.


objected to the argument of the right hon. Member for the University of London, and was unable to see upon what ground the University was more bound to support young men who were studying for the professions than any other corporate body, especially seeing that the funds of the founders were never intended to go in that direction. The advantages of a University life consisted in the associations formed there. He thought that one objection to the present system might be found in the wholesale way in which the University prizes, in the form of Fellowships, were distributed—a system which did not tend to procure the best men for Professorial work. He was not satisfied how far the system of giving prizes tended to stimulate the education of the young, because certainly the greater number of young men would gain just as much knowledge if no prizes at all were given. Another of the evils of the present system was that it interfered with the energy and choice of the men engaged in University work. At present College Lecturers were extremely bad paid, and there was no way of remedying it. As to the object of a University, which his noble Friend had classically called "the cultivation of the Muses," it was certain that the amount of original work performed by the residents in our English Universities was utterly disproportionate to that which was accomplished by the residents at the Scotch and German Universities; but he believed that by introducing the systems adopted in the latter, under which a resident was constantly stimulated to fresh efforts, and was able to attain a fair competence and to marry, our Universities would turn out as much original work as those to which he had referred.


said, he could not help asking himself why this Amendment had been interposed in the way of this Bill, which he earnestly hoped would pass; and he had been much puzzled to find an answer to his query, until the matter had been explained by the speeches of the hon. Member who had just sat down and of the hon. Member for the University of Cambridge (Mr. Beresford Hope). The fact was, that the hon. Member for the University of Cambridge and the hon. Member for the borough of Hertford (Mr. Balfour) were fighting over the body of the Marquess of Salisbury. This question as to the Professorships and the Fellowships was raised in a celebrated speech. of the noble Marquess, which contained a violent denunciation of idle Fellowships, and much of the dislike to and prejudice against this Bill were due to the use of that phrase. The language of the hon. Member for the University of Cambridge showed that he was anxious to reconcile this Bill with his Conservative principles, though he was afraid that the interpretation He placed upon it was rather strained. When the principles of this Bill were first introduced to public notice, they were as distinctly coercive as it was possible to conceive. They were to sweep out the old cobwebs of idle Fellowships, and erect in their place the endowment of Research. For his own part, his opinion lay between the two extremes; he was not an enemy to idle Fellowships, which he thought were an immense advantage to learning in many cases, because they incited the young to exertions which without them might not be made. The truth was that these Fellowships were given, not as premiums for future idleness, but as rewards for past industry, and provided they did not endure for too long a time, and were not excessive in amount, He thought that they would operate advantageously. If there were not these prizes, he did not believe they would keep up anything like the present standard. At the same time, if the Fellowships were continued too long and made too large, they became disproportionate awards, and in the long run were premiums upon idleness; and, therefore, he thought they might, with advantage, be pruned, and their excrescences devoted to more valuable purposes. It was absurd, for instance, that a young man who had distinguished himself at 21 should get a Fellowship of £300 a-year for life provided he entered Holy Orders, and should retain it when he became head master of a public school and obtained an income of £3,000 or £4,000 per annum. With regard to the working of the Universities themselves, He thought that everyone who went there should be taught as much knowledge as was worth obtaining. It was perfectly plain that in old days our great Universities did not do this, but confined themselves to the narrow cycle of knowledge which was the fashion of the day; and it was only quite recently that they had expanded their ambition and their utility. The object of this Bill, was that that which particular Colleges might do out of their private munificence should henceforth be done by all the Colleges for the public advantage, and that, he conceived, was a proper proposal. The speech of his hon. Friend the Member for the Border Burghs (Mr. Trevelyan) was a speech against all endowments, and would justify their abolition. He marvelled that his hon. Friend could walk in that fine ante-chapel of the College to which they both belonged, and yet talk of endowments having "blunted the human mind and destroyed activity of intellect." The stones there were studded with some of the greatest names in the history of England—nay, in the annals of mankind. Bishop Thirlwall had been the first example of critical history, because endowments enabled him to make himself master of the German literature. Had the hon. Member forgotten Barrow, Porson, Newton, Whewell, and Munro, at Cambridge, and Atterbury and Elmsley, at Oxford? In Science there were Adams and Stokes; in History there was Stokes. Had he forgotten the name of Charles Merivale? All these had studied in endowed institutions. The hon. Member had asked why there were no physiologists? The Universities were not distinguished on the subject of physiology, because they had never endowed physiology. They had also neglected practical mechanics, and other departments. One of the objects of this Bill was that the Universities should produce in those departments as great men as they had done in the departments which they had endowed. Much had been said about the unfortunate phrase "endowment of Research," but the advocates of the Bill meant that Universities should be something more than public schools. He had a great affection for that great body from which he had derived so much advantage, and he should be sorry to see it degraded to the level of those who regarded it as a mere machine for grinding young men to a certain point. It ought not to give encouragement merely to young gentlemen and grinders; it ought, by endowments, to encourage study and Research. He should like to see Research subject to these limitations—namely, that the University should have power to give awards for Research in definite subjects, which should be strictly understood and explained, in order that something should be got for the endowment, and also that it should be limited to a definite period, in order that some tangible results might be obtained. Expensive experiments would be required, and pecuniary assistance should be given to enable men to pursue those investigations and to publish their works. There was a danger which had not been pointed out by anyone in that discussion, and that was the introduction into the University of the commercial spirit—of turning it into a profitable public school. That danger arose from the notion of simply getting the largest amount of prizes, which led to the largest number of pupils, fees, and lecturers' income. They would never make a good, effective, and powerful University, either for studying, or teaching purposes, until their constitution was reformed. The great defect was, that no one knew what the University was, and one of the most important reforms that could be brought about was the reform of the constitution of the University itself. He could not agree with what had fallen from his right hon. Friend the Member for the University of London with reference to the Professorships. The fact was, his right hon. Friend was carrying back his recollections a certain number of years. He doubted whether his right hon. Friend was acquainted with the extraordinary change which had come over both Universities in recent times in this respect. His right hon. Friend said it was the rarest thing in the world for a Professor to have a class. Why, many of the class-rooms were overflowing. The lectures of Dr. Lightfoot in the University of Cambridge were crowded. The lectures of his hon. Friend the Member for Hackney (Mr. Fawcett), although on a subject not considered popular, were also largely attended. No doubt, some changes should be made which would encourage the study of special branches of knowledge, such as law, physiology, or practical mathematics; but the Commission would have the power of appro- priating particular sums of money to studies such as these. That was entirely within the scope of the Bill. Therefore it had his cordial support. Trinity College, Cambridge, had a scheme of own which would have been carried out before now, but it wanted the power. No doubt, however, this Commission would enable it to carry out that scheme. He had little to say about the constitution of the Commission, though considering the importance of the position of Chairman, he could not help congratulating the Government on their selection. In the Bill of last year no Chairman was named, but in the Bill of this year he found the Lord Chief Justice of England was nominated. A more distinguished member of the University it was impossible to find. The choice of the Government would create confidence that the great powers of the Commission would be moderately and advantageously used to promote the great objects of the Universities. It increased his satisfaction to see the name of the Lord Chief Justice there, because he derived from it the assurance that all the complaints they had heard of the Judges being overworked were entirely unfounded. They had heard it stated, but he must now suppose with no authority, that those great and learned personages had so much to do that they could not find time to do it, and it was absolutely necessary that the country should find additional force to assist them. There would be no more arduous office than that of the Chairman of this Commission. It would require the constant and daily attention of one having entire and absolute leisure. It was, therefore, with extreme satisfaction that he found nominated for it one who, like the Lord Chief Justice of England, had so much leisure at his command. In conclusion, he hoped the noble Lord would withdraw his Motion. In fact, the debate upon it had, he presumed, been less intended for the benefit of the House than as a means of eliciting their views as to the way in which the Commission should carry out the powers and provisions of the Bill.


supported the Bill. He had full confidence in the constitution of the Commission, and also in the Commissioners who were named in the Bill. But even were it not so, so far from their powers being unlimited, they were checked and controlled by the members of the Governing Bodies of Colleges, with whom they had to act in drawing up any new scheme. The new orders and regulations would then have to be submitted to the University Committee of the Privy Council, and they would decide whether the statutes made by the Commissioners should be carried into effect. In addition to that, there was the final appeal to Parliament, and if either House disapproved of any statute it would not come into operation. The Bill contained moderate provisions, which would enable the Colleges to do all that was needed in the way of reform and improvement, and at the same time protect them against any attempt at spoliation. He did not think the effect of the Bill would be to create an enormous increase of Professors, as compared with the existing system. At Cambridge there were 17 Colleges, 352 Fellows, and 34 Professors. Ten of the 34 Professors had been created since 1860, and it would be very inexpedient suddenly and rapidly to increase their number. In the nomination of Professors at Cambridge care had been taken to make appointments experimentally, and only to make the Professorships permanent when it was found that they would be successful. He did not admit that Professors were useless, and taught nothing, and were in no respect different from ordinary teachers, because in many cases ' they had larger numbers of pupils than would be obtained by persons in private positions. The utility of their lectures might be illustrated by the success of the recent experiment of the Council of Legal Education in appointing eminent men to lecture on special subjects. These lectures took a wider range than could be taken by the teacher of detail, and they had proved attractive and were well attended. Prize Fellowships were useful within certain limits, because they offered incentives to young men, and often gave a start in life to those who rendered great service to the public. There ought to be a limit to the taxation of the Colleges by the Universities. At Cambridge, the Colleges of Trinity, St. John's, and King's possessed a large proportion of the taxable revenue for the purposes of the University, and, though they would be ready to contribute, they might desire to have a limit placed to the amount. There ought not to be a great and sudden increase of Professors, and at Cambridge the money was wanted not so much for Professorships as for buildings. An arrangement which commenced with Downing College in 1800 might, perhaps, be copied with advantage; University Professors formed part of the general body of the College; and, if new Professorships were established, it was probable some Colleges would prefer to contribute in kind rather than by a pecuniary contribution to the University chest. He hoped his noble Friend would not divide on the Resolution, but would allow them to go into Committee, and pass such a measure as would be satisfactory to the Universities and the country.


was surprised that the humorous allusion of the hon. Member for Elgin (Mr. Grant Duff) to the noble Lord the Mover of the Resolution had been taken seriously, and was in doubt how far the noble Lord intended his own remarks to be taken seriously. The noble Lord asked them to resolve that it was not desirable largely to increase the Professoriate; and their agreement with or difference from him would depend upon the meaning to be attached to the word "largely." What he would himself desire was probably not such an increase as the noble Lord would deprecate. The evidence taken by the Duke of Devonshire's Committee showed that there was a great concurrence of opinion in the desirability of increasing the Professoriate, and the necessity was illustrated by the number and diversity of subjects allotted to individual Professors. He did not intend to follow his right hon. Friend the Member for Sandwich (Mr. Knatchbull-Hugessen) in his observations relative to degrees at Oxford; but he wished to point out that at the present moment it was possible for a man to get a degree without the slightest acquaintance with any branch of science or with any modern language, and a system of education which entirely ignored science and modern languages must be one-sided and unsatisfactory. Moreover, it exerted a prejudicial influence upon the great public and other first - grade schools, which were obliged to adapt their instruction to the requirements of the University. As to the endowment of Research, the flattering allusions that had been made to the hon. Member for Elgin and himself were hardly apposite, because they had not been dependent upon their exertions for their daily bread. It was a delicate and difficult question; but there was no reason in the nature of things why Germany should be more prolific in scientific discoveries than England; and if some such course as that which had been suggested, and which had been subsequently advocated by the hon. and learned Member for Oxford (Sir William Harcourt), were adopted, it would effect a great improvement in this respect. He should be sorry to see endowment associated with the metropolis exclusively to the exclusion of the Universities, for many of their Colleges were founded, not for the education of youth only, but for the promotion of study in later life.


said, that having had a long and close acquaintance with the University of Oxford, he could scarcely abstain from taking part in this discussion. He regarded the Bill as one brought forward for the purpose of taking away the Fellowships for the purpose of endowing extra Professorships. He questioned the general proposition laid down as the justification for the Bill—namely, that there were resources in the Colleges for which there were no requirements, and requirements in the Universities for which there were no resources. He was prepared to take issue upon these two propositions. What, he asked, were the requirements of the University of Oxford for which there were no resources? The requirements were reading-room, museum, laboratory, and schools; and we had fallen in strange times if now, as in the past, some Bodley or Taylor would not give all that was needed. He had recently taken much trouble to inquire into the condition of the Universities, and in regard to the requirements, he asserted that the accommodation in Oxford in reference to the Bodleian Library, for example, was ample, provided the schools, which were under the same building, were removed. The Ratcliffe Library reading-room could scarcely be equalled. The Museum, though ugly as a building, was quite large enough to contain all that was likely to be collected in it for years to come; and as to the Laboratory, it would, he thought, be impossible to find fault with it. He fully endorsed the views of the right hon. Gentleman (Mr. Lowe). Professors were necessary at a time when books were rare, but to teach learning in these days by means of Professors was as much out of date as to print The Times by a hand press. There were 46 Professors at Oxford, and 34 at Cambridge, and now it was said that more were wanted. He thought a Professor of International Law and a Professor of Political Economy would be useful; but, although he said nothing as to the value of their teaching, he could not see the utility of having two Professors of Arabic and two Professors of Zoology and Botany in each University. Surely they were not necessary. If a man wanted to study Botany, why should he not go to Cambridge, and to Oxford if he wanted to study Zoology, or vice versa? Then as to the resources. If a man died leaving a large fortune, and bequeathed that for the education of young men, surely that should not be misapplied by expending it on unnecessary Professorships. He himself was indebted to such a benefaction for the means of completing his education, for the acquisition of his Profession, and without it he would not have been a Member of that House. No man would be likely to take a fairer view of his own College as compared with others than Dr. Bellamy, and when it was said that He had been put forward as a new man, he had been balanced by the Savilian Professor of Geometry, who on many points, held opposite opinions. The guiding principle of the Commissioners ought not to be that which had been enunciated by Lord Salisbury, but that laid down by the right hon. Member for London University. It was unadvisable to increase the Professoriate at Oxford, and least of all to increase it by taking away the prize Fellowships which were the reward of hard work, and which gave young men an opportunity to live independently, and make themselves the ornaments of their Profession and of the highest positions in the State.


said, the speech just delivered was the only one that had been made against the Bill. Having the honour of representing one of the Universities in question, he could not allow some of the observations made by his hon. and learned Friend to pass without notice. The hon. and learned Gentleman said, that when a person wanted to perfect himself in the study of one particular branch of science, he might supply any deficiency he experienced in the one University by going over to the other. His hon. and learned Friend spoke only of Botany and Zoology, but the principle was extensive, and he could not conceive anything more degrading to the character of a University than to admit its inability to supply more than a kind of half teaching in respect to a particular branch of science.


I spoke of those things which are amongst the amenities of life.


felt that what were called the amenities of life were in a great many instances in these days the necessities of life. His hon. and learned Friend argued as if they were going to take away a great portion of the Fellowships of the Colleges, to deprive the Colleges of their funds, and apply them to the purposes of the University. There was no such principle laid down in the Bill, nor was it laid down by his noble Friend who had introduced the measure in "another place." His noble Friend used a phrase on that occasion which was misunderstood, and, as he had before stated, was to be regretted. He spoke of idle Fellowships, which were called by some prize Fellowships; but what his noble Friend really referred to was not the possession of prize Fellowships, but the tenure of them, and the limitation of the tenure had been very generally advocated in that House. It had been said nothing could be more unreasonable than that a man should carry away for his whole life the prize Fellow-shid which he had obtained, doing nothing whatever for the College or the University to which he belonged. The right hon. Gentleman the Member for Sandwich (Mr. Knatchbull-Hugessen) had taunted him with forsaking his Tory principles; but he did not know what principles he had forsaken in that Bill. He was still of opinion that the child ought to support the parent, and in like manner he said that the Colleges, which were nothing without the University, might be fairly called on to contribute from their abundance to the wants of the University. The Colleges were becoming rich, their wealth was greater than their needs, and he believed that they were themselves willing to contritute to the wants of the University. He (Mr. Gathorne Hardy) had never taken but one line with respect to the Professoriate, and of what some people called the endowment of Research. He said now, as he had said last year, that the Government were not in favour of an enormous extension of the Professoriate, nor did the Bill contemplate it. It contemplated something very different, for it even contained a provision enabling Professorships to be combined when they were in excess. The right hon. Gentleman opposite spoke of doing away with Fellowships and Scholarships. So far from that, there was a provision in the Bill for extending Scholarships. Scholarships—as the right hon. Gentleman the Member for the University of London had said—came at the time when most young men required a helping hand. But the Scholarship ended at a stated time, and then came the Fellowship, which, if a man remained unmarried, might remain his during his life. The power to hold a Fellowship for life without rendering any service to the University or College in return certainly did require to be modified, and upon this point the Petitions from the Colleges were almost unanimous. With regard to the recommendation of the Chairman of Ways and Means (Mr. Raikes), that a maximum contribution to the University from the funds of the Colleges should be fixed, he would point out that the very principle of the Bill was that before one farthing was taken from the College funds, the wants of the College as a place of education should be thoroughly provided for. They would begin by devoting the money of the Colleges to the purposes of the Colleges, and it was only the superfluity of the funds which was to be given to the University. For that reason it was simply impossible to lay down a maximum, because where one College might not be able to give anything, another might be able to contribute even more than the maximum laid down. It was said that the Colleges ought to be represented on the committee which administered these funds. Well, to a certain extent they were represented in the government of the University; but nothing could be more extraordinary than to pass over to the University for University purposes funds from the Col- leges, and then put a check upon them through College representation according to the proportion in which the Colleges had contributed when they came to deal with the expenditure of those funds. With respect to everything else which had been said, it seemed to him to be practically in favour of the Bill. The hon. Member for the Border Burghs (Mr. Trevelyan) urged that the branches of study should be increased. Well, that was one of the objects of the Bill, and the additional branches would receive the consideration of the Commissioners. He ventured to protest against what had been said as to the deficiencies of resident Fellows. His hon. Friend who spoke on that subject might have had regard at least to one Fellow to whose reputation lie had added by publishing his life—he alluded to Lord Macaulay; and he would only mention four distinguished names connected with Oriel, his own College—Newman, Whately, Arnold, and Keble, who among English writers might be said to hold no undistinguished place. They were resident Fellows. To show with what sedulous care this Bill had been adapted to the wants of the Colleges and Universities, there was a year given to the several Colleges and Universities to produce their own schemes, and in that way the Commissioners would become thoroughly acquainted with the desires of the several Colleges as well as of the two Universities; they would have before them the mind of the two Universities and of the separate Colleges; and. could, therefore, judge of the question as a whole; and having the whole of the schemes of the Colleges and the Universities before them, they would be the better able to judge of them than if they were to go piecemeal into the question. The Commissioners were not men likely to ignore such opinions and wishes, but if they did there was an appeal to the Universities Committee of Privy Council—a body the establishment of which was earnestly desired by all the Petitioners who had yet come before him. Then the scheme would have to be laid upon the Table of Parliament, who would thus have an opportunity of overriding the decision of the Commissioners. He thought the Government had most carefully balanced the Bill so as to arrive at safe and wise conclusions for the benefit of the Colleges combined with the Universities and of the Universities embracing all the Colleges, and he hoped, therefore, the Amendment of the noble Lord would be withdrawn, and the House allowed to go into Committee.


observed that the Professorial system had existed in our Universities for centuries, and that those who were in favour of upholding or extending it had not sufficiently considered the requirements of modern times. The main use of lectures delivered by Professors was that they afforded to students short cuts to knowledge without the trouble of book reading, but he contended that real knowledge which was likely to prove useful must be acquired by means of private study assisted by College tutors and "coaches," whose services were always available. He could not, therefore, agree with a proposal to subordinate private study to attendances at lectures delivered by Professors. With regard to the proposed endowment of Research, he was in favour of such a proposal if it was so carried into effect as to enable needy but able men to prosecute Research in directions which could prove really useful.


said, that having regard to the general tone of the discussion, and particularly to the assurances given by the Secretary of State for War, that the Colleges would only be called upon to contribute to the Universities out of their superfluities, he had much pleasure in withdrawing the Amendment.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

Main Question put, and agreed to.

Bill considered in Committee.

(In the Committee.)

Clause 1 (Short title), agreed to.

Clause 2 (Interpretation).


moved that the clause be postponed in order to enable them to come to a right definition of what the word "emolument" in the Bill meant.


thought it was of great importance that a correct definition should be laid down.

Motion agreed to.

Clause postponed.

Clause 3 (Bodies of Commissioners), agreed to.

Clause 4 (Nomination of the Oxford Commissioners).


commented upon the retention of Lord Redesdale's name as a Commissioner. The noble Lord had passed 70 years of ago, and it was to be regretted that the Government had not found a younger man in his place. He had an Amendment on the Paper for the omission of Lord Redesdale's name, but he would not move it, hoping that the Government would strengthen the Commission by other additions to it.


moved, in page 3, after line 5, to add, "The Reverend Bartholomew Price, Master of Arts, Sedleian Professor of Natural Philosophy." He thanked the Government for the concessions they had made with reference to the names of the Commissioners in their present Bill, as compared with that of last year, and on that ground he thought it would be preferable to add to rather than to reduce the list. It would greatly facilitate the passing of this measure if the Government would meet the views of hon. Members near him on this point. The reason He proposed to add to the names of the Commissioners that of Mr. Bartholomew Price was that that gentleman, having been on the Duke of Cleveland's Commission appointed to inquire into the finances of the University of Oxford, on the Report of which the present Bill was founded, would be able to strengthen the Commission on its weakest side — that of finance. No man was more competent than Mr. Bartholomew Price to deal with the financial part of the question. For eight years he had been Bursar of a College in Oxford. He had been Member of the Hebdomadal Council since 1855, and he had not been an idle member. He had served on nearly half the Committees of that Council. For five years he had been on the Board of Curators of the University Chest. He was also Curator of the Bodleian Library and had been connected with the Clarendon Press. There was scarcely any financial department of the University in which he had not had an active share. He (Mr. Goschen) hoped the Government did not think there was any magic in the number 7. All the Members of the Com- mission would not attend during the working of details. Could Lord Redes-dale attend to all the financial details of the plan while he was still discharging his important duties in connection with the House of Lords? It could not be expected Mr. Justice Grove would attend the working of details. He did not know whether the Secretary for War was able to name the gentleman who would probably be Secretary, but the rumours which had reached some Members of the House with regard to the appointment of the Secretary were not calculated to make them indifferent with regard to the constitution of the Commission. If a Secretary were appointed who was in a sense re-actionary, probably one of the Commissioners would have to supplement his work.

Amendment proposed, in page 3, after line 5, to add the words "the Reverend Bartholomew Price, Master of Arts, Sedleian Professor of Natural Philosophy."—(Mr. Goschen.)


thought the right hon. Gentleman had made out a very favourable case. Although the Commission had been strengthened since last year, it was still very weak in persons conversant with the internal affairs of the University of Oxford. He did not think nine or ten Members were too large, and he hoped Professor Price would be added to the list.


said, he was very glad that the hon. and gallant Member for Bath (Mr. Hayter) withdrew the Motion he had put on the Paper. In answer to the right hon. Gentleman the Member for the City of London, he must say that he knew very little of Lord Redesdale if he thought that noble Lord would have anything to do with a matter without going thoroughly into it. Of all the charges that could be brought against Lord Redesdale, that of allowing other people to do his business would have the least foundation. With respect to Professor Price, it was not any part of his (Mr. Hardy's) duty to say a disrespectful word, but the right hon. Gentleman wished to upset the balance of the Commission to have natural science represented by three instead of two as before. [Mr. GOSCHEN dissented.] The right hon. Gentleman shook his head, but he upset it in every way. Sir Mountague Bernard, who was a resident Professor, knew quite as much as Mr. Price. [Mr. OSBORNE MORGAN: No.] That was his opinion, and it would remain his opinion whatever might be said by the hon. and learned Member for the County of Denbigh. The Government had endeavoured to put these two Commissions on a fair footing, and to put upon them men who would give their attention to the work that had to be done. He thought he had met the wishes of all the Gentlemen on the other side of the House by adding the name of Professor Smith, both in consideration of his connection with science and his thorough knowledge of the internal affairs of the University. He believed he was as perfectly qualified to do all that would be required in connection with finance as Professor Price. He was not, therefore, prepared to accede to the proposed addition of the name of Professor Price.


said, he hoped that the Committee would not treat this as a Party question. It was not a Party question with him, but a financial one. He proposed Mr. Price as a gentleman possessed of peculiar financial capabilities, and who by his position on the Oxford Commission from the beginning to the end of the inquiry, was better acquainted with the finances of that University than any other person could possibly be. He had nothing to say against the right hon. Mountague Bernard, nor did he wish to detract from the merits of Dr. Bellamy; but he moved the addition of Mr. Price's name solely on account of his special and peculiar qualifications, and without reference to his being either a Liberal or a Conservative.


said, the reason adduced by the right hon. Gentleman for the addition of Professor Price—namely, that he had sat on the previous Oxford Commission was a sufficient reason for hint to vote against the Motion, as it might induce him to claim too great authority with the other Commissioners. He would add that Dr. Bellamy's local and financial experience would well bear comparison with that of Professor Price.


said, there was a strong Party spirit at Oxford on all these matters. He wished to know who was to be the Secretary to the Commissioners?


said, that the appointment of a Secretary was not in the Bill, and was not a matter before the Committee. There was no necessity for increasing the number of the Commissioners.


hoped the question would not be decided on political principles. He did not know that the rev. Bartholomew Price was a Liberal until he heard it in the House that night. He was anxious to vote for that gentleman because he was highly qualified to deal satisfactorily with the subject.

Question put, "That those words be there added."

The Committee divided:—Ayes 141; Noes 152: Majority 11.—(Div. List, No. 91.)


in moving that the name of Professor Huxley should be added to the Oxford Commission, said, Sir, I think it is very unfortunate that the Government has not seen its way to comply with the suggestion of my right hon Friend (Mr. Goschen), for it is hard to argue with the master of so many legions; but it is clearly the duty of Her Majesty's Opposition, during the discussion of a Bill of first-rate importance, to take care, while it offers no factious impediment to the progress of the measure, that the country should fully understand what are, in our view, the defects of the Ministerial proposals — proposals in which I for one find much to sympathize with. I rise accordingly to suggest the addition of two names to the Oxford Commission, and I think I can state my reasons for doing so without trespassing for many minutes upon the attention of the Committee. In the Commission proposed by Her Majesty's Government, three out of four of the faculties into which University teaching has been from time immemorial divided are represented, some more, some less fully than others—still all three are represented. Theology, or, at least, that portion of theology which has for the last 300 years been in favour at Oxford, is, as was natural under present circumstances, most strongly represented. There is Dr. Bellamy, who is himself a clergyman; there is the Chairman of the Commission, and there is the right hon. Mountague Bernard, both of whom have been most closely connected ever since they took their degrees with that section of the Church which has been of late years more influential at the University than any other. Law, again, is very powerfully represented by an ex-Lord Chancellor, by Lord Redesdale, by one of Her Majesty's Judges, and by the right hon. Mountague Bernard. Arts, too, have their representatives in Professor Henry Smith, and in the hon. Member for Northumberland. But the fourth faculty, important in itself of old time, and now much more important from the number of subjects which are most conveniently grouped under it, if we keep up the old traditional division of the faculties, has no representation. I presume that the object of all of us is, without in any way altering those characteristics of the University of Oxford, of which we are proud, to take this opportunity of engrafting upon her system such improvements as we can. Now, every one will, I suppose, admit that the faculty of Medicine — the faculty under which group themselves all the sciences into which life enters—has not been the faculty in which Oxford has hitherto most distinguished herself, and at the same time that there is no good reason why she should not attain as much reputation in this as in any other faculty. No one would wish that Oxford should devote any large part of her revenues to a medical school. The accidents of history have made London the chief medical school of the country, and it would be a mere waste of money if Oxford were to attempt to rival it in preparing medical men to any large extent for the actual exercise of their profession, just as it would be a waste of money if she were to attempt to rival the Inns of Court in the teaching of the actual practice of the law. But as there are a number of studies introductory to the actual practice of this or that portion of the law which find a most fitting home at Oxford, so there are a number of studies, the results of which have a great bearing on the Medical Profession, which should be better represented than they are at Oxford. And it must be remembered that the study of those sciences, which were till the creation of the New Museum hardly touched by the University teaching, has become in our day absolutely indispensable. I believe that it would be hardly too much to say that the study of the sciences into which life enters—such as comparative Anatomy, Physiology, Botany, and many more—has lately done, and is now doing, more to change the thoughts of all men upon great subjects, and promises to do more for the actual practical advantage of the human race than any other studies. I suppose Mr. Darwin, for example, has by the study of these sciences had greater influence in altering the course of human thought than any man now living; and I suppose, likewise, that it will be from a further prosecution of some of the obscurest branches of these studies that we shall ultimately learn how to cope with not a few of the very worst calamities which afflict us—with cholera, and cattle plague, for instance. This is not the place, nor the time to discuss this subject at any length, but I cannot believe that any one will dispute the vast and growing importance of those sciences, or deny that they have not hitherto in Oxford met with as large a recognition as is there due. If these two propositions are admitted, then I think I make out a good primâ facie case for proposing to the House and to Her Majesty's Government to place upon the Oxford Commission the most distinguished representative of those sciences, whose services are available for such a purpose. Professor Huxley stands, as every one knows, in the very first rank of European men of science. He has been largely employed on Commissions by many Governments, more especially on the Science Commission which reported some, time ago, and on the Scotch Universities Commission which is just about to report. From his service on these two Commissions, from his experience at South Kensington and the School of Mines, from the fact that he has taught very large classes in the University of Edinburgh, and presided as Lord Rector over the University of Aberdeen, it will be seen that he would bring to the duties of an Oxford Commissioner exceptionally wide acquaintance with the defects and merits of the Universities of the whole of Great Britain, and, as all who have ever met him on business will readily admit, he is a man of extraordinary general ability, and while firm in the defence of his own views, most conciliatory in his relations with others. On all these grounds, I beg to propose him as a fit person to serve on the Oxford Commission.

Amendment proposed, in page 3, after line 5, to add the words "Professor Huxley."—(Mr. Grant Duff.)


while fully admitting the great eminence of Professor Huxley, expressed a hope that the question before the Committee would not drift into one of Party. It was no disparagement whatever to the eminent gentleman alluded to, to say that, from the peculiar opinions he held, he had not the confidence of the members of the Established Church, or of any other religious body in the Realm. The Commission should consist only of those in whom the country had confidence.


said, that, independently of the great attainments of Professor Huxley, there were, he thought, strong grounds why his name should be added to the Commission, and one was that he, at least, would be unconnected with the Universities. If they were not to be allowed to add the name of Professor Huxley to the Commission, he hoped some Member of the Government would state what the objection was to adding to the Commission the name of so eminent and distinguished a gentleman. He should vote for Professor Huxley's name, because there was a very strong feeling outside that one person at least unconnected with the University should be on the Commission, and thus give it to some extent a national character.


said, the names which the Government had decided to recommend to the House had been fixed upon after very mature consideration, and the Government were not prepared to accept any alteration of the list so submitted. He had the highest possible admiration of Professor Huxley's great ability, but for the reason he had stated he could not support the Amendment.


said, the right hon. Gentleman's speech was far more Liberal than that of the hon. Member for Wexford, who, when he gave a vote on that (the Liberal) side of the House, need not take the trouble of attempting to justify it. Not only was there no hon. Member on the Liberal side, but there were few on the Conservative side, who would have ventured on that occasion to say that a man was unable to sit upon a University Commission because he did not enjoy the confidence of the Established Church. The hon. Member for Wexford had himself ceased to be a member of the Esta- blished Church of England, and that Church did not hold such narrow or bigoted opinions as those entertained by the hon. Member. He regretted the Government had not agreed to add a name to the Commission representing the science of the country. The Commission would have far greater influence if it included the names of a few distinguished men who did not belong to the University, and he should therefore vote for that of Professor Huxley.


was sorry to hear that the hon. and learned Gentleman was surprised at sentiments coming from anyone of the Liberal benches which were not acceptable to the front Opposition bench, for that was a matter which would surprise no one who was not at home on that particular seat. With regard to the general question, the Universities were national already, and it was a point of honour with them that the Commissioners should be selected from amongst themselves.


hoped that this proposal would not be decided on merely political, and still less on theological, grounds. The right hon. Gentleman said that the Commission was balanced. But in what way was it balanced? It contained gentlemen, no doubt, who were well acquainted with the Universities, and others eminent in literature and mathematical science. Human knowledge, however, might roughly be divided into several great classes, such as theology, Classical and Modern Languages, Mathematics, and the great sciences which dealt with life, including the important subject of Medicine. Now, on these Commissions, Theology was admirably represented, Classics and Modern Languages were most ably represented; there were on that Commission most profound mathematicians; but, on the contrary, neither on the one Commission nor the other, was there anyone connected with the great sciences of life. This was surely a great deficiency, especially when they considered that, if he might venture to say so, one great failing of the Universities had hitherto been that they devoted themselves too exclusively to Classics and Mathematics. It would be impossible to have better representatives of Biology than Professor Huxley and Dr. Hooker, and he hoped the Committee would add the one to the Oxford, the other to the Cambridge Commission.


warmly eulogized Professor Huxley's great abilities, but said that the powers of the Commission being so enormous, if not awful, Professor Huxley was far too persuasive, enthusiastic, and energetic a reformer to be entrusted with the task of applying them.

Question put, "That those words be there added."

The Committee divided:—Ayes 161; Noes 195: Majority 34.—(Div. List, No. 92.)


I had intended, Sir, to move the addition to the Oxford Commission of another name, the name of a man of the highest distinction, that of Professor Max Muller; but it is idle to take division after division, when the only result is to be beaten and to lose the time of the Committee. Let me point out, however, to Her Majesty's Government that they are putting themselves in a very bad position before the country. They have, by making the last two divisions, purely Party divisions, succeeded in keeping off the Commission the man whom their own Supporters, the very Speakers who have been addressing us from those benches, admit to be the person best acquainted with the finance of the University. They have succeeded in keeping off the Commission the best authority on all that vast division of science in which Oxford has hitherto been weakest; and now they are going to have the further unhappy triumph of making me withdraw the name of the man of all others best able to bring to the re-organizing of Oxford the widest and deepest foreign experience. [Cries of "Move."] Well, I am entirely in the hands of my Friends; I go on or not, as they like. [Cries of "Don't withdraw."] Is the Commission, as it now stands, containing, as it does, the names of purely Oxford trained men, reasonably constituted? There is no one upon the Commission who has any knowlege whatever of foreign Universities, and although we are all very proud of Oxford, I suppose there are few of us who would not say that she has a good deal to learn from foreign Univerities, just as they have a good deal to learn from her. The contention that she can be absolutely self-sufficing would indeed be curiously absurd if advanced in the face of the fact that nearly every book of importance which is used in the teaching of Oxford, nay, most of the lectures of the tutors and Professors which are good for anything is largely indebted to the labours of the German Universities. That being so, it is surely very unwise to ignore altogether the experience which has been accumulating in Germany during the last three quarters of a century. It is with a view to prevent our doing this that I propose to add to the Commission the name of Professor Max Midler, who has long been the principal living link between the learning of England and of the Continent, who is at once a Professor in the University of Oxford, a foreign member of the Institute of France, and one of the most illustrious of German Orientalists. My Friends behind me wish me to divide, and I will divide, but we shall be beaten, and the Government will have the poor success of showing their want of appreciation of another great man of learning and ability, together with their imperfect comprehension of the difficult and delicate task which they have undertaken. There is this consolation, however, that we shall be able to show the country how much wider and more in accordance with public opinion our reform of Oxford would have been, and we shall keep the door open for further reform when a fitting opportunity comes, by making it understood that the projected settlement was never acquiesced in on this side of the House.


in seconding the Amendment, said, that if personal qualifications were to go for nothing, he would have no more to say; but the House of Commons ought to have a voice in the matter. An abler man than Professor Max Müller could not be put on the Commission.

Amendment proposed, in page 3, after line 5, to add the words "Max Müller, esquire, Professor of Philosophy."—(Mr. Grant Duff.)


opposed the Amendment. It was necessary to make a selection, and would any hon. Member vote for the rejection of a single name proposed by the Government? It was out of no disrespect to Professor Max M tiller, a man of European reputation, that the Amendment was not supported by the Government, but be- cause it was necessary to limit the number of the Commissioners of each University to seven. Oxford could produce a dozen men fit to serve on the Commission; but the names selected were good and worthy names, to which there could be no possible objection.

Question put, "That those words be there added.

The Committee divided:—Ayes 173; Noes 197: Majority 24.—(Div. List, No. 93.)

Clause agreed to.

Clause 5 (Nomination of Cambridge Commissioners).


rose to move the addition of the name of the "Reverend William Bateson, D.D., Master of St. John's College, Cambridge." He said he made this proposal on grounds similar to those on which the right hon. Member for the City of London moved an addition to the Oxford Commission; but, if anything, the grounds were stronger in this case. He ventured to say with great deference, that Dr. Bate-son was in every respect exceptionally well qualified to carry out as a Commissioner, the objects of the Bill as set forth in the Preamble. For 20 years he had been Master of his College; he possessed a complete acquaintance with the whole University system, as well as the system of separate Colleges, and with University and College finance requirements. He was not a man of extreme views, nor, on the other hand, was he a man of narrow opinions, who would refuse to look at the claims of new and rising sciences. If it was absolutely necessary to preserve the balance of the Commission; without wishing to be invidious, he must say that, in the opinion of most Cambridge men, there was no name on the Commission which commanded the same authority and respect in University matters as did that of Dr. Bateson, and, therefore, the onus of this Amendment would rest upon others and not upon himself. He trusted that the Government would not meet this Motion by a simple negative, but in a greater spirit of conciliation than they had recently manifested.

Amendment proposed, in page 3, line 18, to add the words "Reverend William Bateson, D.D., Master of Saint John's College, Cambridge." — (The Marquess of Hartington.)


said, he was willing to admit that the noble Lord had brought this Amendment forward in no hostile spirit, and he concurred in all that had been said concerning the merits and qualifications of Dr. Bateson. The noble Lord had based the claim of Dr. Bateson on two grounds—his special financial knowledge with reference to the revenues of the Colleges and the University, and his general knowledge of the whole subject, and his capacity in every respect to sit as a Commissioner. Now, if the noble Lord would look at the Commission, he would find in Mr. Stokes, Lord Rayleigh, and Mr. Hemming, the names of those whose financial ability was not inferior to that of Dr. Bate-son. It must also be borne in mind that one of the most important points which the Commission would have to determine would be the relative rights of the different Colleges as well as the mode in which they were to be dealt with; and it had, therefore, been determined that at Cambridge no Heads of Colleges should be put on the Commission. [An hon. MEMBER: There are at Oxford.] Yes; but he was speaking of Cambridge, and in that University it was especially unadvisable that there should be a single Head of a College upon the Commission, when the funds of a College were about to be dealt with. In Oxford the 17 Colleges were so divided that few were so large as to predominate over the others, as did the two great Colleges at Cambridge—St. John's and Trinity; and if the Head of one of those Colleges were put on the Commission, on which his College would be represented by three other members, it would give an unfair predominance to that College, as compared with the others. If the Head of one of the two great Colleges were put upon the Commission, there ought to be another Head of a College representing the smaller Colleges to serve with him, and even that would not give satisfaction. Depend upon it, if the Committee wished to give confidence to the University and to the Colleges, they would leave the Commission as it was named in the Bill.


said, the Siamese Twins who were conducting these Bills were doing so on opposite principles. Thus the Secretary for War put on the Oxford Commission the Head of one of the Colleges, but his right hon. Friend (Mr. Walpole) objected to the Head of a Cambridge College being appointed on the Commission for that University. He asserted that they had not put a single man on the Cambridge Commission who knew anything about the business of the University. They were all distinguished and able men, but they had no practical experience of University work.


said, that no one would think of comparing right hon. Gentlemen on the Front bench opposite to Siamese Twins, as they were not in the habit of acting together; and in proof of this it might be observed that earlier in the evening the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Sandwich had objected to a head of a College being on the Oxford Commission, and now the hon. and learned Member for Oxford wished to have the Head of a College (Dr. Bateson) on the Cambridge Commission. He (Mr. Dalrymple) must express surprise at the assertion of the hon. and learned Gentleman that not a single man was named on the Cambridge Commission who knew anything of the business of the University. The Bishop of Worcester had been associated years ago with the late illustrious Chancellor of the University, in measures for the reform of the University, and while the head of a College at Cambridge had been the most active friend and promoter of everything that was proposed for the benefit of the University. And no one who knew anything of Cambridge could be ignorant that Dr. Lightfoot was most intimately acquainted with the internal affairs of the University and with the details of its government. Now both of these names appeared in the Bill among the Cambridge Commissioners. It was a disagreeable task to refuse to admit the names of other eminent men, but he was quite sure it would be understood that the reasons for the omission were no disparagement to them.


in order to make the Commission well balanced, suggested there should be added to it some one more devoted to classical studies than there was at present upon it. Against four Senior Wranglers might be set Professor Lightfoot, but his attention had been paid of late years to theology rather than to classical scholarship. He could not let the occasion pass without paying a tribute to the extreme fitness of Dr. Bateson for the position of one of the Commissioners. He was a man of unrivalled knowledge of the University and Colleges of Cambridge, and eminent for good sense and for moderation of character. He was, therefore, eminently fitted to serve upon the Commission, and as the classical section of the University we not fairly represented upon that Body, was highly desirable that Dr. Bateson should be appointed to represent it.


deprecated any extention of the number of the Commissioners for Cambridge beyond the limit fixed in the case of Oxford.


said, that having resided at Cambridge six months last winter, he was quite sure the appointment of Dr. Bateson would give great satisfaction to the resident members of the University, Liberals and Conservetives alike. Dr. Bateson would strong then the Commission, not only by his knowledge and general character, but by the leisure he would have to attend to the duties of the Commission.

Question put, "That those words b there added."

The Committee divided: Ayes 182 Noes 208: Majority 26.—(Div. List No. 94.)


moved that Dr. Hooker, President of the Royal Society, be added to the Cambridge Commission.


seconded the Motion.

Amendment proposed, in page line 18, to add the words "Dr. Joseph Hooker, President of the Royal Society."—(Lord Edmond Fitzmaurice.)


who on rising to support the Amendment, was met with continued interruption, said, if it was persisted in he should move the Adjournment of the Debate. This was matter which ought to be and should be discussed. That the names of these eminent men should be rejected by those in charge of the Bill with silent contempt was a scandalous proceeding—["Oh!"] He repeated the statement [Cries of "Withdraw."] He would not withdraw, and if necessary they would have another day to discuss the matter.


said, that nothing was further from the intentions of the I Government than to treat the name of Dr. Hooker, or of any person proposed, with silent contempt. Science would be as effectually represented by Professor Stokes as by any person who could be proposed.


said, that the office of President of the Royal Society was comparatively honorary, while Professor Stokes had been secretary of that society, which was its working office.


was sure that there was no intention of treating t science with contempt. Mathematics, doubt, were well represented by Professor Stokes, who, however, was never President of the Royal Society; but biological science, including medicine, was entirely unrepresented, and he hoped therefore that the Government would on the Report agree to the addition of Dr. Hooker to the Commission.

Question put, "That those words be 3 there added."

The Committee divided:—Ayes 158; Noes 190: Majority 32.—(Div. List, No. 95.)

Clause, as amended, ordered to stand part of the Bill.

Committee report Progress; to sit again upon Monday next.