William Hamilton.

Discussions on philosophy and literature, education and university reform. Chiefly from the Edinburgh review; cor., vindicated, enl., in notes and appendices online

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turn its peculiar advantages to account. — But to conclude : i am
therefore, convinced, that it would be no ordinary improvement
on the late Oxford Examination Statute, if, prospectively, a regu-
lation were adopted, in principle at least, to the following effect :

Two several Orders of Study to be requisite for .examination
towards a degree in Arts ; and in these the gradations of profi-
ciency to be rewarded by two several Orders of academical Honour.


The first or superior order to have two Departments, to wit,
Humane Letters and Philosophy. Certain lowest competencies,
in both of these, to be necessary for a degree ; whilst, in each, (as •
now,) a higher proficiency to merit the honour of a corresponding
class, if not, moreover, (by a more accurate arrangement,) indivi-
dual rank among the candidates similarly classified. The Classes
of honour, as hitherto, may, in each department, be three or four.

The second or inferior order may comprehend an indefinite
number of departments, — departments at least which it is not
here necessary to specify. From the candidate (as in the pro-
spective statute.) should be required a minimum in one depart-
ment, if not in more, which, however, may be chosen by himself ;
and the honour of a corresponding class to be assigned, as at pre-
sent, to every higher proficiency in the several departments.

Care, however, should be taken, to mark, and that obtrusively,
the difference between the honours belonging to the Orders of the
absolutely necessary, and of the partially optional, studies. This
might be done, by maintaining the two orders and their examina-
tions sufficiently distinct, by the following or other differences,
(the two first of which are employed, but that inadequately, in the
recent Statute) : 1°, Distinction of Time ; the higher order pre-
ceding the lower, as its condition. 2°, Distinction of Examiners ; ■ %\
different individuals being, for each order, appointed to this func-
tion. 3°, Distinction of Object Matter ; no department of the prior
order being repeated in the posterior. 4°, Distinction of Xame ;
the one order being called by Primary, the other by Secondary,
or some such discriminative appellation.

Before the examination of the Primary Order can be under-
gone, three full courses, three Academical Years (p. 720,) to be
completed ; and this examination, for honours at least, must be
taken within a year thereafter. The examination of the Secondary
Order, at least for honours, should in hke manner be hmited to a
certain period.

As enacted by the new Statute, the names of all, whether
honoured or not, to be published under the department in which
they pass.

Taking, finally, a general retrospect of the preceding scheme
of academical education, this is seen to comprise various utilities, i

It would restore the University. It would bring back acade-l
mical education to its true and ancient significance ; reconnecting!
the Houses and their private instruction with the University and
its public discipline.


OXFUKi) AS IT Mir.HT BK. 7;{!)

It loses none of the advantages in the present domestic or
tutorial system, but would correct the manifold imperfections of
that system, as actually applied. For it would determine a far
higher efficiency ; making, at the same time, that efficiency secure
and general : whereas the lower efficiency, as at present fur-
nished, is not only contingent but rare, not only limited but con-
fined to a few. As things noAv are, one House may be an instru-
ment of education, comparatively real ; and others, such instru-
ments only in name ; nay, even in the same House, study may be
in vigorous activity at one time, at anotiier in supine inertion.
But this scheme, if realized, would allow — no House to fall educa-
tionally asleep, — no Head to gratify his personal preferences at
the expense of his official obligations, — no incompetent Tutor to
hide his obstructive nullity in the obscurity of Hall or College.
! For, while it would elevate the Tutor from a private into a public
I instructor; in raising his dignity and emolument, it would raise
I also his qualifications, usefulness, and duties.

It commits in a beneficial contest, (" ayat'jj I' Iqis ijh ^porolai")
House with House, Tutor with Tutor, Pupil with Pupil ; applies
cipiably the stimulus of emulation to all, from the commencement
uf the academical curriculum until its termination. It opens, in fact,
J I a new field of exercise and excitation ; leaving no one to inertion,
be he teacher or be he taught, but goading each unceasingly to
the best, — according to his kind of duty, and in proportion to
the measure of his powers.
i Restoring, it would constrain the University : — to employ its
instructors in the most edifying ways ; — to propose, not what can
most conveniently be taught, but the best objects, in the best
order, and in the best books ; — to measure accurately the amount
of energetic talent usefully employed ; — and to reward this, by
proportionate and appropriate distinction.

Far, therefore, from superseding the Examination for a Degree,
it would prepare the candidate, subjectively and objectively, to
undergo it ; enabhng him to remedy his defects, and rendering it
a more effectual and certain test of his proficiency.

I should now proceed to tlie consideration of —

b) Things secondary or stippleinental. But matters princi-
Ipalhave extended to such a length, that I must not enter upon
others which, though of importance only as conditions of the
I former, could not possibly be discussed within a narrower com-
ipass. — Of these there are tivo, more especially meriting attention.
' l)ut to which I can onlv allude.


The first — is a scheme of academical Patronage and Regulation^
accommodated to the circumstances of the Enghsh Universities^
more proximately of Oxford. And here, beside the subject in its
more essential relations, it would be requisite to consider the
impediments which an improved regulation of these schools would
inevitably encounter from parties — in the Universities themselves,
— in the Church and its patrons, — in the Government for the
time, — and in various influential interests throughout the nation ;
impediments so great and numerous, that we may regard almost
as chimerical, the hope of seeing these institutions raised to the
perfection, implied in a due accomplishment of the great ends for
which they were established. In fact, my suggested plan of
improvement for Oxford, was partly founded on a conviction, that
a tutorial instruction depends less, for its efficiency, on the virtuesi
of an academical superintendence and appointment, than does a
professorial. (On these virtues see pp. 348-385.)

The second — is a scheme for the erection of new Halls. This
would be a return, in part, to the ancient custom of the University ;>
and must inevitably take place, were an increased resort of stu-i
dents determined to Oxford, — unless, what we need not contemn
plate, domestic superintendence should here, (as in Cambridge,)
be relaxed, for the pecuniary interest of the existing Houses. New
Halls should be erected : — 1°, to supply additional demand for
entrance ; 2°, to prevent or remedy a slovenly tuition in the older
Houses ; 3", to keep down (independently of more direct mea-
sures) the expense of the Colleges, and to afford a cheaper educa-
tion to the poorer students : 4°, to accommodate dissenters, were'
they, without a surrender of their principles, admitted for educa'
tion to these national seminaries, (pp. 473 sq., 519 sq.) ; and 5°;
to remunerate, in their Headships especially, academical zeal ancj
ability. — Of course the new Halls should be of a better constitm
tion than the old.

The other measures under this head, as — a general taxation o,
the necessary collegial expenses, — the means of remunerating th
academical instructors, — of retaining talent in the University^
and oi pensioning emeriti^ — libraries, — musea, &c. ; these, howeveJJ
important. I can at present only name.




r. 12, 1. 11 from bottom, insert the following note :— Sclielling.* —

* [But not alone by Schelling. For of previous philosophers, several
held substantially the same doctrine. Thus Plotinus :—"RaTt hi to o»
ivi^ysiu- f^x'h'Kov §£ ra «,4«<p<u 'iu. M<'« /ah ovv (fvat;, ro ri oi/, o n i/ov;-
ho Kxl Tss o^rcc. Keel i} tov ovto^ ei/i^ysiiic kxI 6 vov; 6 toiovto;- y.eti »i
OVTU DOijastg, ro iiZo;, x.ot.1 ij f^o^tpii rov oi/toj, k»1 q iuioynx- x,. r. A. (Enn.
V. 1. is. c. 8.)]

P. 30, 1. 13, insert the following note :— other.* —

* [The first three cases had, indeed, been realised in the Eleatic school
alone. The fii-st by Parmenides, the second by Melissus, the third by
Xenophanes. The fouith has not, I presume, been explicitly held by
any philosopher ; but the silent confusion of the Absolute and Infinite
has been always common enough.]

P. 50, to end of note : — [Some, however, of the Greek commentators on
Aristotle, as I have elsewhere observed, introduced the term 2vvuiahots,
employing it, by extension, for consciousness in general.]

P. 120, insert before 1. 13 from bottom :— Joseph Scaliger also testifies to
the nativity of his Mend Duncan, in Scotland, and, apparently in the
west of Scotland. Speaking of the Gaelic, he says : — " qua in Scotia-
occidentalibus (unde Duncanus et Buchananus sunt oriundi) .... utun-
tur." (Prima Scaligerana, voce Britones.) — Scaliger, I may notice, had
resided for some time in Scotland.

P. 237, at end. — The preceding letter, though I always prized it as exceed-
ingly curious, is, I find, far more curious than I had ever surmised. —
Helius Eobanus Hessus (to say nothing more of Reuchlin) is known to all
versed iu the history of the Restoration of Letters, and history of the
Reformation of the Church, as one of the most remarkable characters of
that remarkable period. He was the admired of Erasmus and of Luther,
the bosom friend of Hutten, Crotus, Buschius, Melanchthon, and Camc-
rarius, indeed, more or less intimately connected with almost all the many
men of note by whom Germany, during the first half of the sixteenth cen-
tury, was so conspicuously illustrated. In an age— in a country where
Latin so totally superseded the vernacular, Eobanus was the Poet of the
Reformation, and, with Melanchthon and Camerarius, its chief Literator.
He is called by Erasmus the Ovid, by Camerarius the llumvr, of Ger-
many ; and his translation of the Psalter was even more popular than
his Homeric version, or his Ovidian imitations. Of his Psalms, there are
known more than forty editions. As a poet, Eobanus remained durinjr
3 c


his life unapproaclied in Germany ; and it was not till after his death, that
Lotichius, and long after it, that Balde, came to share with, if not to
wrest fi'om, him the Elegiac and the Lyric laurels.

But why w^as he called the King? — In reading the Letters of Eobanns,
of which we have two collections, by his two friends, Camerarius and Draco,
in reading the Letters of his friends Camerarius and ]\Ielanchthon, — and
in reading the Life of Eobanns by Camerarius (to say nothing of the
many subsequent biographers of the poet,) we encounter perpetual allu-
sions to the title of King ; the title, in fact, which Eobanns assumed him-
self, (but, in joke, as " Rex Stultorum^'") and with which he was almost
uniformly decorated by his more intimate correspondents. He sometimes
dates his epistles, indeed, " ex Regia Egestosa ;" and his Queen, he once
informs a correspondent, had ceased to amplify the royal family, — " non
quia vetula sit, sed quia nolit ; dicit enim satis Regulorum." The royal
pair had only a single Princess (Reginnla). Thus Luther, (in 1530,)
sending to the poetic translator of the Psalms his own humbler prose Ger-
man version of the cxviii., writes : — " Nam poetae nolo ullo modo com-
parari, sicut nee debeo nee possum. Tu enim rex poetanim, et poeta
regum, sen, rectius dicani, regius poeta et poeticus rex es, qui regium
ilium poetam sic pulchre refers in peregriua sibi lingua." (De Wette, iv.
138.) Eobanus, too, had received the royal title long before he was
recognised, in then temulent Germany, as the very Prince of Topers ; his
only rival in this supremacy being, as we are informed by Melanchthon,
the poet's patron and territorial liege-lord, the magnanimous Landgi-ave
of Hesse. So much I knew. — A few days, however, after the preceding
letter of Reuchlin had been printed, in looking, for another matter, through
the Farragines Operum of Eobanus, I stumbled on a poem, previously
overlooked, articulately explaining the origin of the poet's regal style;
and found, that this same letter constituted the veiy imperial patent of
creation, and was not, as I had deemed it, one merely among the many
ordinary recognitions of his royal rank. I have likewise subsequently ob-
served, that Camerarius in his Life of Eobanus (followed by Adamus
and others,) attributes to Reuchlin the coronation of Eobanus. — Referring
again to the letter of Eobanus in answer to Reuchlin's, I find the follow-
ing allusion to the matter in question : — " Ego autem quod rcliquum est,
mi Reuchline, puto me tibi permagnam debere gratiam, et certe non fallor,
quod genti meae tam antiquum, et quasi ex chao, attuleris praeconium, et
i-egem me, alludente voce gentilicia, salutas. Rex igitur sum ego, sed
admodum parvo contentus regno. Quanto tu asseris, id esset vel Impe-
ratori nimium." — The verses (which here follow,) are from the second
book of the Sylvce ; and though the FaiTagines were fii-st published dming
the life of the poet, (1539,) they are not accm-ately printed.

"Cur vocetur REX.

Non ego crediderim citius, prodisse poetam

Quem sterilis raptum prjedicat Ascra senem ;
Quam mihi jamdudum Phoebseia signa ferenti,

Yenit adoptato nomine Regis honor.


Hoc tameu uiule ferani, qua niauet ongiiie iiomeu,

Stultum et ridiculum dicere pene fiiit.
Scripsiiniis exigiio vulgata poemata versu,

Scripta uotis populo Lypsia clara dedit.*
Legerat Iutjc gentis Rcucliliuus fama Siicva;,

Et dixit : — " Regis nomen habere potcs.
Inter eiiira quoscimquc ferunt tiia secula vatcs,

Rex es, et est ratio uominis iiide tui :
Nam Graii Regem dicunt Hessem. poct.^,

Esse ita te Regem, nomine reqne doces ;
Et velut exerces agnatuni in carmina regnuin,

Recta Stat in versu syllaba qiuvque tuo." f
Hoc scriptum J excipiunt atque amplexantur amici,

Et Regem clamant omnibus esse locis.
Ipse ego quandoqnidem nee publica scripta negare,

Nee poteram cliaris obstruere ora viris :
" Rex," inquam, " Rex vester cro, quando ista neccssc est

Tradita militiie nomina fcrre niefe.
Verum alios titulos, nee inepta insignia sumam,

Moria jamdudum cognita tota mihi est.§
Vidimus Utopift. latissima regua superbje.||

Tecta Lucernarum sunt peragi-ata mihi.^
Fortunata meo lustrata est Insula cursu,

Dulcia ubi aiterno flumine mella fluunt,
Qua vii-et ambrosite succus, qua rupibus altis

Nectara, ut e ccelo, prjecipitata cadunt.**
Gentis Hj-perboreas felicem vidimus oram,

Qua neque mors bominura ncc mala fata premunt,
Qua stant pei-petuam facientia stagna juventam.

Qua licet in ccelum scandere quando
Haec per et 1i£ec cii'cum pulcherrlma regna volentem,

Moria me fida duxit arnica manu ;

* The first edition of the Heroides Christiance was published at Leipsic, in
1514, Eobanus being then in his twenty-fifth year — Does Eobanus in the first two
verses refer to a recognition by him of Reuchlin's poetical genius in 1 ">14 ?
Reuchlin's Scenica Progymnasmata were republished, in that year, at Leipsic ;
and probably the letter of Eobanus to Reuchlin, to which the latter in his epistlo
here printed alludes, contained an acknowledgment to the effect, with special
reference to that famous comedy. Reuchlin's coronation of Eobanus was thus
only a reciprocity for Eobanus's laureation of Reuchlin.

t This is a very accurate abstract of Reuchlin's letter, here printed from tiie
autograph, and for the first time.

♦ Thus in a writing, and not in conversation.

§ Erasmus, by his Encomium Morice, had, in a certain sort, brought Folly tnlo
II See the Utopia of Sir Thomas More.
ir Lucian's True History (i. 29,) ?

** The Fortunate Islands, or Islands of the Blessed, need no iliu.s(ration.
tt He refers principally to Pindar, (Pyth. x, 57, sq.)


Cumque peragraiim tot tautaque regna, licebit

Stultitiaj titulos sumere jure mihi.
Musica legitimum sumant in carmina regnum,

Qui sunt MiBonidaj, Virgiliique super ;
Quam mihi sint uull?e scribenda in carmina vires

Sentio, et ingenium metior inde meum.
Vos, quia me Regem facitis, sinite esse tyrannnm,

Stultitiie liaud aliud me diadema movet."
Sic ego. — Paruerant illi tam vera monenti,

Tradentes mauibus Regia sceptra meis.
Fecerit ergo licet Reuchlinia littera Regem,

Non tamen lioc tantum contulit imperium.
Plm-ima Capnioni subscribit turba : — Quid inde ?

Si rem complebunt nomina, Caesar ero."

P. 325, 1. 18 from bottom, add the follomng : — (Dr Whewell's errors, upon
this and other kindred points, are refuted with gi-eat acuteness by the
Eev. Mr Mansel of St John's, Oxford, in his valuable work jiist published,
entitled— '■'■ Prolegomena Loff tea ; an Inquiiy into the Psychological cha-
racter of Logical Processes." See Note A and pp. 77, sq.)
P. 380, 1. 4 insert the following note :— erudition ; *

* [See p. 335, sq. — Even the one, to which the two exceptions are here
reduced, is, I am sorry to find, hardly valid. For " the Harmony of the
Gospels " by Dr Macknight, (and to him I alluded,) was, indeed , translated
into Latin and printed at Bremen in 1777 ; but the author, I see, had
studied in the great classical school of Leyden.]
P. 407, 1. 1. from bottom, insert : — [The previous suspicion is, I am now

convinced, unfounded.]
P. 629, 1. 13 : — insert : — ; finally, 6°, if the judges were made to act under the

obligation of an oath.
P. 648*, 1. 31, insert, as a new paragi-aph, the following:— I should notice,
likewise, that logical authors have confused themselves and readers, in
attempting to expound the mystery of modal inference. Yet nothing,
when properly evolved, can be simpler or plainer.— Determine the mode
of the propositions in question ; and then their consecution, as modes, is
simply the conseciition of these modes, as genera and species, proceeding
(usefully, at least) — in aflirmation upwards and partially, — in negation
downwards and totally. See the Tables, pp. 644*, 647*.


p. 20, 1. 7 from bottom, read :— " God is the life of the soul, as the soul is

the life of the body."
r. 21, 1. 8, read :—

" Aud Naught is ev'ry thing, and ev'ry tiling is Naught."
P. 22, 1. 13, read :— iWa/
P. 39, 1. 17, read:—" the hunter of trutli."
P. 103, 1. 7, read :— " Reason."

P. 121, at eud of note, read :— 1850, and p. 621* sq., below.
P. 155, 1. 13 from bottom, read: — 1. a)
P. 163, at end of note insert : — See p. 639*, sq.
P. 195, 1. 26, read :— why he should not.
P. 199, 1. 2 from bottom, read : — te came latebai^
P. 213, 1. 10 from bottom, read : — Ecclesiastiqms^ aud Basuage in his ///*-

toire dcs Juifs,
P. 221, 1. 10, read :— Panzer, Lobstcin and Genthe.— But Duchat, C. G.

lb. 1. 18, read : — Hamelmauu, followed by Reimauu and Placcius,
lb. 1. 16 fi-om bottom, read : — Crotum," and herein he is followed by Floegel,
P. 237, 1. 4 from bottom, read :— uugivendis
P. 253, 1. 10 from bottom, read : — Homoeopathy
lb. 1. 14 from bottom, read : — l»r^uv
P. 274, 1. 2 from bottom, read : — = philosophy
P. 314, 1. 11, read :— ourselves. [Editor.]
P. 320, 1. 17 from bottom, read :— so"?]
P. 368, 11. 1 and 3 from bottom, read : — Michaelis
P. 407, 1. 1 from bottom, read: — former,
P. 491, 1. 22 from bottom, read :— aught
lb. 1. 2 from bottom, read : — [In regard
P. 493, 1. 10 from bottom, read : — Anglican Churchmeu
P. 494, 1. 13 from bottom, read :— commencement.]
lb. I. 12 from bottom, read : — [Mr Hare's
P. 495, 1. 20 from bottom, delete : — as a whole
P. 496, last line, read :— Luther.]
P. 501, 1. 16 from bottom, read :— p. 59, 3d Ed.
P. 504, 1. 18 from bottom, read :— where, as neither in the preceding, docs

he enable
P. 581, 1. 11, read :— Time is positively
P. 594, I. 21, read :— referrible



P. 597, 1. 2-6, read :
P. 6U, Title, read :
P. 632* 1.10, read:

-less obtrusive
-(A) OF, &c.

(So in heading of pp. 616, 618, 620.)

e ' \e

P. 634* 1. 17, read :— By " denial," ;

P. 643* 1. 12, read :— " Newton is not Leibnitz." J

P. 645, 1. 9 from bottom, read : — Privilegia
P. 647*, 1. 11, read : — Propositional Modes
P. 672, 1. 26, read :—imto himself

There are some inaccm-acies noticed of the Greek accentuation, in pp. 26,
35, 84, 154, 388, but these it is not worth articulately to correct.


Absolute, the : (see Unconditioned) ;
meanings of term, 13 ; as contrasted,
and as convertible, with Infinite, 13 ;
used In- Cardinal Cusa, 605 ; Absolute
Identity, 54r.
A. E, I, O, (the logical symbols) of La-
tin origin, 126 ; and taken from the
fii-st two vowels of Affirmo, and the
first and second of Xego, 631*.
Agrippa (Cornelius), his counsel touch-
ing a reform of the University of Co-
logne, 458.
Aldrich (Dean), his Logicse Compen-
dium, 123, 137, 138, 141, 148, 149,
168, 718.
'. Algebra. See Mathematics.
Alphabet of Thought, Table of, &c.,

577, sq.
Altdoif, University of, 374, 483.
, Apocalypse, opinions regarding its ca-

nonicity, 506.
■ Archytas, the treatise on the Categories

under his name a forgery, 138.
: Aristotle : his Categories exclude the Un-
conditioned, 25, not borrowed, 138,
j metaphysical, 139 ; his merits in re-
I gard to Logic, ib. ; his logical system
i not perfect, 140; text in Ids Ethics
! emended, 268 ; apparently anticipates
I the doctrine of the Conditioned, 602 ;
! character of his writings, 682 ; on ne-
! cessity of philosophical study, 695;
' quoted passim.

Assurance, Special Faith, &c., in earlier !
• Protestantism, the condition and cri- [
terion of a true Faith, now generally
snn-endered, 493; held by English
and Irish Cliurches, but not by their '
Churchmen, 493 ; this return towards
Catholicism unnoticed, 493, 494.
Augustin (Saint), his conciliation of free |
grace and fi-ee will, 598 ; (pioted pas
Austin (Mi-s), 535.

Bacon (Lord) : quoted, as to professorial
endowments, 693 ; as to tlie compara-
tive facility of the inductive and phy-
sical sciences, 730; ct alibi passim.'

Balfour (Robert), his character as a
jtliilosopher and logician, 119.

Balliol College, Oxford, its academical
eminence, 659, sq.

Barbara, Celarent, &c., of Latin origi-
nal, and not borrowed from tlie Greeii ;
probably l)y I'ctrns llisiiaiui.s 126.

Barltarisni of mind, and a knowledge of
facts, compatible, 39-41, 690.

Baynes (^Nlr Thomas Spencer), 163.

Benson (Mr Eobert), Memoirs of Col-
lier, 190.

Berkeley (Bishop), an unknown treatise
by, 187.

Bernard (Saint), his conciliation of free
grace and free wiU, 598 ; quoted plu-

Blemmidas, his Greek words for mood
and figure taken from the Latin Bar-
bara, Celarent, &c., 126. See 631*.

Boerhaave (Heirmann), 254.

Boole (Prof.), 273.

Bossuet's accuracy vindicated, 493.

Breadth and Depth of notions. See

Broun (Mr James), 117.

Brown (Dr Thomas), his i)hiloso])hy of
Perception, 42-97 ; his series of mis-
takes, ib. ; results of his doctrine, 94 ;
his doctrine of Causality, 586, 590.

Bucer (Martin), his character, 49S.

Bursa, the name by which an authorised
House for tin' liai)itatinii and suj)eriu-
tendence of academical scholars was
called in (iermany, 4u7-nO.

Buschius (Ilermannus). See Epistohu
o. V.

Butler (Samuel) quoted, on the neces-
sity of philosophising, 695 ; on the
fact of consciousness, 62.

Cajetan (Cardinal), liis doctrine in re-
gard to the conciliation of prevision,
predestination, and free will, 599.

Calvinism, current representation ol.
erroneous, 6<i<».

Cambridge University: its forced study
of Mathematics niiimproving to tin;
miiiii. and conducing to idiocy, mad-


uesri, death, 309, 327, 651*, sq. ; why
so deleterious an exaggeration there

Online LibraryWilliam HamiltonDiscussions on philosophy and literature, education and university reform. Chiefly from the Edinburgh review; cor., vindicated, enl., in notes and appendices → online text (page 87 of 94)