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In the first place the scholars were the party chiefly aggrieved, but without help from those in authority, they could do little. The Senior Fellows were not likely to give them this help of their own mere motion. But in the second place the Provost was Dr. Baldwin, then but recently (four years before) appointed, and his character is better known thau that of almost any other Provost of former times. He is known to have been constantly in opposition to the Senior Fellows; he nominated Fellows more than once, and scholars once, against the will of the majority of the Board ; and on one
occasion even procured the expulsion of a Senior Fellow. This Provost, Baldwin, is traditionally reported to have been a kind governor to the scholars and students generally, and of his popularity with them, after the period now referred to, we have a lasting proof in his portrait which to-day hangs in the dining-hall; and which was procured
by voluntary subscription of the scholars as a mark of their respect;" such an honor was never paid to any other Provost, and we think it goes far to prove that to him the scholars were indebted for the recognition and assertion of their claims.
The next and last augmentation took place in 1758, also in the Provostship of Dr. Baldwin, and only a few months previous to his death. He fixed the salaries of the Senior Fellows at £100, of the Juniors at £40, and of the Native Scholars at £20. Although the value of money has fallen considerably since that date, the nominal salaries remain the same. It was probably after this time that the method of augmentation by fees was adopted, for it does not seein probable that any trouble would be taken to increase the Bursar's salary from twenty to fifty pounds, if he were in receipt of five per cent in the College Revenues, or that a paltry sum of four pounds would be added to the salary of the Senior Lecturer, if the salary formed an insignificant part of his income. But as long as all the Junior Fellows were Tutors, deriving the greatest part of their income from the fees of their pupils, there was no sufficient motive for objecting to the fees which the board might resolve to exact for the improvement of their own incomes. The scholars in fact were then the only party who had reason to complain, and that solely on the grounds which we shall presently mention. The foundation of Non-Tutor fellowships altered this. On the impolicy of that act we shall not dwell. But we may observe that the object at which it aimed was of itself sufficient to condeom it. That object we are inforied
was to induce the junior men by the pressure of poverty to accept the college livings, and thus to ensure a succession of vacancies. No means of securing the acceptance of livings could well be more objectional; and supposing it to succeed the only circulation resulting in the body of Fellows would be in the tail, the motion in the upper members being as sluggish as ever. The proper means to have adopted would have been as diminution of the great inequalities of a Fellow's income in the different stages through which he passes. At present every ten years added to a Fellow's life actually increases considerably the value of his life interest in his Fellowship, the nearer approach to the great prizes inuch more than counterbalancing the diminished expectation of life. On the contrary the value of any office with a fixed salary is of course continully lessened, and by this double action the Fellows become more and more permanently fixed, the higher they rise in the list. Moreover, this inequality is in fact increasing, and therefore we may expect a still smaller number of vacancies in future, and a still slower promotion (on an average of many years) of Non Tutors. Then gentlemen will of course devote their energies to some non-Collegiate occupation, and the best years of their lives will be wholly lost to the College. They cannot apply themselves to study and research such as would make thein, as they are well qualified to become, distinguished ornaments of the university. No; if some reform is not effected the existence of this body of ill paid Non-Tutors through the six steps of which every Fellow must pass, will ruin the efficiency of the College. This is no exaggerated statement; we are sure of this, that the more the reader reflects upon it the more will he be amazed that such a monstrous arrangement should be allowed to continue, the effect of which is in short to prevent the College from obtaining any benefit from ten or more of the best years of each Fellow's life. Even this does not represent the whole evil, for it must be remembered that teachers are required in subjects not studied for the Fellowship examination, but when is the future lecturer to prepare himself for these? While he is a Non-Tutor, his time is occupied in making a livelihood by means of the knowledge he has already acquired, and when he becomes a Tutor at middle-age, is he then in favourable circumstances for commencing the study of a new subject ? Is he even likely to commence at that late period, to apply himself to original research in the subjects of which he is already master ?
Those who are most experienced in the work of private tuition will be best able to answer. Who can say what would be the result of a contrary system, one which would enable every fellow for the year or two following his election, to improve hinself by foreign travel (as Bishop Berkeley did), or by the study of some special branch for which he might have some taste? It is needless at present to dwell further on this point. The Scholars' case de. mands a brief notice.
The case of the scholars as we would put it, is briefly this. It is desirable that a clever and industrious young man should be able to obtain for himself a maintenance at the College expense during his preparation for the business of his profession, if not during the whole of his undergraduate course.
But it is not desirable that by a single success early in his career, he should secure such a maintenance for any lengthened period, as this would in most cases tend only to encourage him in indolence ever after. The latter proposition will not we presume be denied; with respect to the former it is sufficient to observe, that in every College in the realm, except Trinity College, an able student may by his own exertion in the pursuit of his ordinary collegiate studies, obtain an income sufficient at least to render resort to school teaching or the like unnecessary. In Trinity College, Dublin, a scholar on the foundation of one of the royal schools may do the like; but students from other schools, however industrious or accomplished, will not be rewarded by the College with a public maintenance. We shall not argue that philosophically speaking it is desirable, especially in a poor country like this, that ample provision should be made for such students. We are mistaken if the country will not think itself entitled to demand it.
But for those few persons who approve of leaving things as they are we would observe, that other Colleges, as we have shown, do make such provision; and multitudes of students who are not rich, but give good promise of future distinction, will be infallibly attracted to those Colleges where whatever merit they have is sure to be recognised, not by a piece of parchment but by the more satisfactory honor of one or more scholarships, worth from five to one hundred pounds a-year, which will both encourage and enable them to apply themselves to their studies with increased diligence, so that they may throw lustre on their College, and thus give it a new attraction for future students. This is the manner in which the existence
of such prizes promotes the prosperity, and, therefore, again increases the revenues of the College which is liberal enough to found them. It is a most short-sighted policy which cuts down the prizes in a great place of education, such as Trinity College. But it is said, the present scholarships are good enough for the class of men who obtain them, considering the moderate attainments which the examination requires. A manufacturer might as reasonably decline to introduce an improved article into the market on the ground that the existing article was fully equivalent to the price paid for it, and satisfied the demand. But he knows that a better article may command a better price and bring a better custom to his own
а establishment. And one would think it equally plain that the nature of the competition must be determined by the nature of the prize. It will not be long before the Fellowship Examination furnishes an illustration of this obvious principle. True, reply the Board in 1843, but increased competition is much to be deprecated; a greater number of students than at present would be drawn off from their ordinary studies to read for scholarships, and would be seriously injured thereby. We protest we are amazed at this statement proceeding from the heads of the College. Reading for scholarships has positively, they tell us, an injurious effect on the education of the students, and of course it follows that the only benefit to the successful candidate is the small pecuniary emolument. If this be true, the sooner all examinations for College prizes are swept away the better. But in accordance with the second principle mentioned above we think it would be very unwise to raise all the seventy scholarships to a value much larger than the present. If the old distinction of native and other scholars had been retained, the salary of both classes being increased, if not exactly in their original proportion as provided by the statute, yet so as to preserve a considerable advantage to the native scholar, then these more profitable places might very well be disposed of by appointing to them those scholars who were most distinguished at their Degree Examination. This distinction was abolished, indeed, in 1828 ; but there is no reason why some measure should not now be adopted which would have a similar effect. It is not necessary to found new Scholarships, it is sufficient to carry out the principles laid down in the Statutes themselves, and make thirty of the existing Scholarships of in uch higher value than the rest. Scholars who distinguished
themselves at the Degree Examination or at the Theological Examination should be eligible to these places, and should hold for a period to be fixed by the Board. And we are not sure that the Board might not adopt a hint of another kind given by the ancient practice of the College. It was formerly the custom, before each examination for Scholarships, to read over the list of the existing scholars in the higher classes, and remove those who had been most neglectful of their studies, so as to increase the number of vacancies. Now we do not wish to leave such a very arbitrary power in the hands of the Board. We know that in former times it was wuch abused; but it is not very difficult to fix some definite standard of the distinction which every scholar should be required to attain in order to be entitled to retain bis Scholarship. A provision of this kind is actually enforced with regard to the Bell's scholars in the English Universities,and with respect to Queen's scholars (elected from the Royal schools) in our own. These last are required to obtain a certain amount of distinction every year, but in the case of the University scholars we should enforce this rule only in connection with the Degree Examination. We would make a scholar's salary after that period depend wbully on the distinction he had obtained. But in the case of Undergraduates also there ought to be a sufficient number
a of exhibitions or other prizes to raise the income of the most distinguished and meritorious students to £50 a-year. An Exhibitioner from the Royal schools may have £50 in addition to his Scholarship and other offices, and in many cases may enjoy an income of £80 or £90, but this is a peculiar privilege of the students from those schools. It may be said that the foundation of Exhibitions may be left to private munificence. We regret indeed that Dublin College has not enjoyed to a greater extent the benefits of private foundation. But if the funds of the College itself are adequate, as we believe they are, let a portion of them be devoted to this purpose. No better investment could be made, for a tenfold return will accrue to the College in the way already suggested, and through the College to every member of it. A liberal and judicious distribution of rewards, fitted to attract men of first-rate abilities, to develop their powers and to retain them in the College, will do more for its prosperity by a thousand times than a few paltry successes in lists which a great University ought not to condescend to enter.