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lower them in the estimation of the world. But we verily believe that much higher considerations operated upon the more enlightened leaders, both of the old establishments and of the new. Each felt that the other had a useful task to perform; the former knew that they could not educate the great bulk of the pupils destined to receive instruction in London; the latter were equally aware that they could neither receive the kind of persons, nor teach some of the things, for which Oxford and Cambridge were principally endowed; and it thus became evident to each, that the help of the other was wanting to the perfection of a national system of education. We do not intend to assert that any opposition from the Universities,' could have materially retarded the completion of the new institution ; but we have no doubt that a course different from the one so properly and so wisely pursued would have delayed, if not frustrated, one of the most important consequences which could flow from it, and which seems already to be nearly realised--we mean the foundation of another College in London, supported by persons of high authority in both Church and State, and destined to teach certain branches of knowledge which the London University, from necessity, and not from choice, had been obliged to omit. Having upon another occasion traced the history of the latter, we shall now follow the steps by which this more recent, but apparently flourishing scheme arose out of it.
The establishment of the University of London was begun in the summer of 1825. The objections principally urged against the plan, were, that no provision was made for religious instruction—that the metropolis was a dangerous neighbourhood for youth—and that a jointstock company was ill adapted for superintending the education of youth. As the danger arising from a situation in London was most of all dwelt upon, and as, indeed, many even of the well-meaning adversaries of the scheme were chiefly hostile to it, from a most ill-founded apprehension that it might interfere with Oxford and Cambridge, every one could easily perceive that no attempt would be made, at least by those objectors, to oppose it by means of a rival undertaking. If they honestly believed the university to be hurtful, because it taught young men among the temptations of London, or because its prosperity would injure the old seminaries of learning, they could not wish to double those mischiefs, by founding two insti. tutions instead of one. If, on the other hand, they only disliked the new institution and its authors, or desired to obstruct every plan for the improvement of education, they might, while it was yet in embryo, have set on foot a rival scheme, in the hopes of its crushing the other without being successful itself. That no such
attempt was made at a moment when it might have done irreparable mischief, satisfactorily proves the fairness of, at least, the great bulk of the objectors. Some there may have been only bent upon injuring the new University; but all those whose support could give the attempt a chance of success, were assuredly of another opinion, and nothing was tried. Meanwbile the formation of the University proceeded steadily; the difficulties unexpectedly created by the distress of the times were overcome ; the sum required, according to the deed, before any thing could be done, was raised ;* the building was begun, and soon became an object of attention in the neighbourhood. Doubts were now entertained only as to the precise time when it would be finished and opened for the purpose of instruction. But many of the professors being appointed, and arrangements made for beginning, before the wings of the edifice were built, there appeared every reason to expect that the classes would open at the time announced on laying the foundation, that is, October 1828. Accordingly, all men acknowledged that the enterprise had succeeded; and that the University might be considered as established. Indeed, in the month of May last, the body of the building was roofed in; the magnificent portico in the centre was begun; the internal arrangements were in a state of forwardness; the library and museum were collecting ; particularly the fine apparatus for the Natural Philosophy class was almost completed; and men of the most distinguished talents and highest reputation were chosen as professors in most of the departments of literature and science.
In these circumstances, the attention of many persons of weight in the country, seems to have been drawn towards the new institution, in the success of which they had probably, till now, never seriously believed. They observed, that from the fundamental principles of its constitution, the exclusion of all religious tests, and the universal admission of persons as both managers and proprietors, both teachers and pupils, without any distinction of sect, it was absolutely impossible to teach any branch of theology within its walls, or to require any religious observance from its inmates or frequenters. They were averse to a system of education, of which the most important of all branches of knowledge thus formed no part. When it was said, that no
* L.150,000. This was the minimum ; but by the statements of the Council, it appears that from L.30,000 to L.50,000 more will be wanted to complete the building collections, and that a part of this sum only is subscribed.
one who attends a Mathematical or a German teacher thinks of requiring that there shall be prayers before the lesson, or a portion of divinity taught along with it, the answer was, that such lessons do not profess to be a complete system of education, and that they who give instruction in every thing but theology, by the omission seem to undervalue it, and to sanction the belief that merely human learning can constitute a complete circle of the sciences. When it was replied, that the omission could indicate no such imperfect estimate, but rather the contrary, founded as it was on a sense of the paramount importance of religious matters, which will allow of no compromise—that at all events there was no choice, inasmuch as men of different tenets never could agree in the kind of instruction to be given upon sacred subjects—and that to say there must be no collegiate education without theology, was in truth to say, that each sect must bave a college of its own—the rejoinder was, that nevertheless the interest, perhaps the safety, of the Established Church, required an establishment conducted upon its peculiar principles, whither those might resort to whom the enforcement of its discipline, and the promulgation of its doctrines, presented no obstacles; so that while the one seminary should teach all descriptions of men, the other might receive that large portion which agrees with the national establishment.
We purposely omit all reference to the topics of mere abuse, drawn from unpardonable misrepresentation, with which some partisans sought to disfigure this important discussion; and confine ourselves to the intelligible and perfectly justifiable ground taken by the more respectable, and we are most willing to believe, more numerous supporters of the new College. It is perfectly evident, that upon such grounds, no one who supports the London University, can, without an evident departure from the principles of that Institution, object to what we might term its younger sister, were it not rather its first-born child. For what is the very chiefest of these principles ? -_That education should be brought home to every one's door, and in the way most completely suited to the maintenance of absolute religious liberty. If each sect were sufficiently numerous to support a college, the best system would be a set of colleges, in each of which the same branches of knowledge were taught, except those connected with religion, and that those again should vary in each, according to the peculiarities of doctrine distinguishing the class of believers it belonged to As, however, this is not the case, there must be an establishment open to all, to church as well as sects, teaching every thing but Theology; and each must provide that branch of instruction apart, either at home or in private seminaries. But the members of the Church compose a great proportion of the community; exceeding perhaps all the sects together in point of numbers-in wealth and influence very greatly exceeding them. They are, generally speaking, agreed upon every thing that is essential, whether as to doctrine or discipline; aud an establishment might therefore be formed for their use, which needed not either to exclude theological instruction, or to dispense with religious observances. By the same rule that the dissenters say, 'I
will not send my child to a college where the liturgy is used, and • the thirty-nine articles taught;' a churchman may say, I will
send no child of mine where the prayers of the church are not ' read, and its tenets inculcated.' And they who, in deference to the honest scruples of the former, open the doors of one institution to all, by imposing no restraint which any can feel burdensome, must, if they are consistent, admit the expediency of affording the latter another resort, if unfortunately excluded from the first, by the very means taken to prevent exclusions. Nor will it be enough to say that the churchman is wrong in this view of the subject, and toargue that he may send his son to the University for Letters and Science, and teach him Religion elsewhere. He may be quite wrong ; and it may be quite right to argue with him, and try to persuade him of it; but it is his conviction, until you have converted him; he thinks now that he is right, and he must act upon that opinion; and therefore it is perfectly fit that he should have the means of obtaining the education required, without the sacrifice which was only made by the London Uni. versity, because it was unavoidable. If the Presbyterians or the Baptists were numerous enough to have a College of their own, the same argument would apply to their case. But the Church can maintain a College; and it is most fit that there should be one for its members; that is, for such of its members as cannot be persuaded that religion be may taught apart from the other branches of education. *
* We had occasion formerly to urge a similar argument in one part of the great controversy respecting Schools. The principles, indeed, upon which all these questions rest on either side, are precisely the same. The argument respecting the distribution of the Scriptures, without note, or comment, and that touching schools for all, instead of schools where a certain creed is taught, are only varieties of the same doctrine which bas been broached upon the foundation of a college without theological lectures. But it is remarkable that we find the topics identical even in their more minute details. Compare with this view, the observations in the text, on the inconsistency of those advocates for Academical Instruction, who, in order to unite all sects, and open the University to every one, maintain the It is quite true, that when this point comes to be more closely examined, the difficulty is extreme, of discovering wby a single seminary, where many things are taught, should necessarily have theological lectures and public prayers, any more than three or four schools devoted to different branches of instruction ; why, because there are assembled under one roof teachers of Anatomy, Mathematics, and Roman Antiquities, a professor of Theology should also be there, when no one would think of connecting that study with Anatomy, or with Mathematics, or with Roman Literature, if taught separately in different places. No less bard is it to explain the grounds of alarm felt by many, lest the principles of youth should be injured, and their religious impressions weakened by attending those lectures in one place, where no theology is taught, and no attendance on public worship required, while the same youth may with perfect safety frequent the Jike lectures in different places, without any religious instruction or discipline whatever. Accordingly, there is another apprehension added to this, and wbich, we believe, has influenced many who were sensible of the weight of the arguments just alluded to. They conceive that the security of the Church Establishment is likely to be endangered by the existence of a flourishing college wholly unconnected with it. Now, though this seems a needless alarm, as long as Oxford and Cambridge prosper, richly endowed in themselves, and inseparably connected with the Ecclesiastical system of the country, yet nothing can be more fit, than that the metropolis should have a great University connected with the Church, for the convenience of such of its inhabitants as prefer the plan of domestic education, or cannot afford the charge
necessity of leaving the students to learn religion elsewhere, and yet object to a college being provided by Churchmen where their children may be taught theology, with the similar reasoning used towards some very worthy friends of education among the Dissenters, who objected to any schools being opened where the children of churchmen might, if they pleased, be taught the catechism, (vol. xxxiv. p. 235.) A • churchman, (it is there said,) as naturally prefers a school where the • catechism is taught, as a sectary prefers one where it is excluded. • Nor is it any answer to say, that the dissenter cannot send his child where it is taught, while the churchman may send his where it is ex
cluded. He may, undoubtedly; but he may also prefer the other ; . and this preference produces no sort of evil effect, unless in the single • case of the community he lives in not being large or rich enough to • support schools on both plans.' So a college where theology is taught, must be injurious, unless in London, where there is room for one on each plan.