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the case. At a later stage, when the Commission issued a Draft Ordinance fixing the location of certain Arts Classes at King's College, Dr. Bain met the proposal with a strenuous but unsuccessful opposition, holding that "the arrangement is a matter of pure convenience, and as such should be left to the discretion of the Senatus ".
In the early part of this period, two articles by Dr. Bain appeared in Mind; one "On Physiological Expression in Psychology," in the January number of 1891, and the other, "Pleasure and Pain," in the April number of 1892. Both were reprinted in the volume of Dissertations. He also made a fresh excursion into the field of biography by reminiscences of the Reverend Dr. Kidd, whose preaching had influenced him in his boyhood. These reminiscences were first published in the Aberdeen Evening Gazette, of 25th April and 2nd May, 1892, and afterwards reprinted in Dr. Stark's Life of Dr. Kidd.
From the date at which the Autobiography closes, Mrs. Bain's health had been very precarious, and in 1891 Dr. Bain had made his London journey by himself. In February of 1892, he and his wife were obliged to.leave Crieff Hydropathic hurriedly on account of Mrs. Bain's failing state. She grew rapidly worse after her return home, and died on the 17th March, 1892. In the same year, Dr. Bain made various public appearances in Aberdeen, which may be recounted in chronological order. The first of them, which preceded by some weeks the visit to Crieff, was at a meeting of the Aberdeen branch of the Educational Institute of Scotland, when he was presented with the Diploma of an Honorary Fellow of the Institute. In his long address on education, or, more particularly, on education in primary schools, he began by giving personal reminiscences of educational history, and then proceeded to speak of his long experience in teaching, and his having philosophized upon that experience in various forms, more especially in his Education as a Science, where it might seem he "had pretty well gone over the ground of the theory of education ".
"There was, however," he said, " a grand omission, the mention of which may give some novelty to my present address. The omission in question is based upon one point of deficiency in my long experience as a teacher. In my very humblest beginnings in that capacity, my work assumed what may be called the collegiate form; that is to say, it consisted in giving lessons upon some particular topic, and in these being done with my pupils. I never was in the position occupied by many of you, namely, to have to carry on a school in all its departments so as to have not merely the charge of individual subjects, but the adjustment of the whole to suit the requirements of the pupils. I could not even trust my imagination to realize fully this position. It seemed to me that nothing less than actual experience in the work for a length of time could qualify any one to say with ADDRESS ON EDUCATION. 409
confidence how many and what things it was possible to include in a course of school training for the pupils at the stage usually implied in our primary schools."
Then, after referring to the new matters that are being constantly brought forward in connexion with education, and to the question how these are to be overtaken without detriment to subjects already in the field, he went on :—
"It is only of late years that even physical dietaries have been arranged upon science principles, for prisoners, for sailors, for soldiers, for paupers, all more or less compulsory, while to the self-governing individual the results have been given as suggestions for voluntary guidance. We are probably still in the same infancy of the human race as regards education dietaries. . . . The situation at the present day is something especially overpowering to contemplate. The advance of knowledge in every direction, the multiplication of topics in each single department, carried to such a length that even an antediluvian memory would break down under any one—all this leaves possibilities of disproportion, of mistaken choice, and omission of the unquestionably useful; and it becomes an exercise of judgment or prudence of the very highest order to make a suitable selection and adjustment for a very limited amount of time."
He next adverted to a related department where he had striven all his life to achieve something :—
"From my very earliest days I have been in the habit of weighing one part of a subject against another, and one whole subject against its rivals in respect to the number of their fruitful applications. It is not enough to say of this or that department that it is useful; the question is how useful? or, as I might phrase it, how many utilities to the square inch? I have applied this to grammar, to logic, to rhetoric, to psychology, as far as lay in my power."
Later on in his address, he dwelt on the comparative worth of the physical and natural sciences :—
"It is at this moment a question with the most zealous and enlightened educationists how to indoctrinate the population at large and not merely the students of professions with certain select branches of physics or natural philosophy as being eminently prolific in their bearings upon the wants of everyday life, from whose consideration none can be exempted. Physics is a vast subject and not in all parts equally applicable in the ways suggested; nevertheless, a happy selection of topics is possible which would cover our most important utilities in personal and household management, and would rank very high under the square inch test."
After considering the relative values of the different branches of physical science, he said of the natural sciences :—
"The number of their applications to the square inch, as beside the physical sciences, is scarcely above a cypher."
"they are the sciences of world-interest. Their sphere is the cosmos; their object is to unravel the plan of the
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universe. They enable us to go out into the world with arrested gaze and to find materials for solitary cogitation and social interest in a region of things that does little or nothing for physical wants."
He concluded with the following remarks:—
"You will now be asking what is the drift of this elaborate attempt to pit against each other the physical and the natural sciences. The only answer is to indicate the choice or preference in the programme of the school with limited time and means. For this purpose you should call things by their right names, and value each subject according to its actual fruits. I presume that stress must first be laid upon the primary utilities, the necessaries of a healthy existence. If these are provided for and space remains, then enter upon the luxurious, the noble, the soul-satisfying in the highest degree. ... I have not yet done full justice to the physical sciences in exclusively confining my remarks to their share in the primary utilities. They too have their sphere in revealing the great laws of the cosmos, the ruling principles of mundane government as exhibited both in the terrestrial and in the celestial regions. These branches already quoted as making the fewest contributions to immediate utility still play a part in the field of the noble. I need only cite the example of astronomy as in itself a vast theme of worldinterest while of comparatively limited practical utility— I mean limited in range, not in importance. The great art of navigation reposes upon only a very small portion of astronomical study; and for the everyday wants and management of life the applications are simply nothing to the square inch. Yet, of all the sciences I have had to study in the course of my life, none has given me a greater degree of intellectual satisfaction