may arise among them. The young commit a great mistake who exclusively attach themselves to that which is entertaining among their studies. Entertainment, of course, is not to be rejected when occurring naturally ; but by far the most profitable is that intellectual effort which takes hold of and masters what is orderly but not attractive. That student is earning the noblest triumphs, who, pushing through the outworks of an uninviting study, fighting his way manfully with every obstacle, at length reaches a point where the symmetry of the whole lies before him, and the delight of conquered knowledge dawns upon his heart. That is the man who will make an impression on the society in which he lives, if not upon the broader world, to be remembered long.

The effort of properly attending lectures is one which requires no little mental training such as is seldom found short of the higher classes in college, and then only in the case of those who have been faithful to their previous studies. A common defect of the uneducated, or imperfectly educated, mind is that of not giving attention correctly. To hear correctly, and at once, what is said, is a most desirable practical power, and not less important the habit of reporting correctly.

Popular lecturing is necessarily a different affair. Inasmuch as, in that case, a mixed audience is addressed, and mental preparation cannot be presumed, the lecture must take the character of entertainment, and make as little demand as possible upon that attention which is felt to be an effort. It belongs to the head of amusements, takes its place with the theatre and dramatic readings, and has little to do with education.

The recitation method of instruction is that which is best suited for boys at school, and in the greater part of the college course, and must be retained in the university, wherever drill is needed. The lecture is best for aiding the studies of mature minds in collecting and classifying information, and ought to interchange with the recitation in the more advanced part of the college course, while in the university it is necessarily the prevailing method.

In college, the grand objects in view have reference to selfculture, to formation of habits of attention, of diligence, of reading, command of the faculties, and of regular and constant application. Of course, it is of no little importance what the material of study is; but much more is the intellectual discipline which it furnishes. In the university, on the other hand, the great concern is the subject matter of study. The student, it is presumed, has already the necessary training, and is now seeking clear and classified information for his life's work.

Conversation, or examination, or making of abstracts, should always accompany a course of lectures for instruction, as helpful, if not indispensable to the certifying, digesting, and assimilating of the instructions received. Taking of notes during the time of listening to a lecture is an interruption, and granted only to defective memory. It were better to grasp the whole discourse as a unit, by one continuous effort of attention, and write the notes after returning to one's room ; but that demands an excellence of memory too rare to admit of its being recommended as a rule; and to learn to take notes with facility and without embarrassment of attention, is an attainment valuable for life.

Upon the whole, the great aim of the university is to instruct, promote, and direct professional enterprise. The school is a system of constraints; the college of mixed constraints and inducements, designed to guide, to correct independent action. The university is a commonwealth of minds already committed to their own responsibility. Neither school nor college have properly any professional bearing; the university is entirely professional.

They are the studies of the university which have no natural termination. The work of the school comes to an end when its pupils are adequately prepared for college; the work of the college ceases when its classes are properly qualified to take up the studies of the university ; but the work of the university initiates men into that career which, as long as they are useful to the world, has no end. Up to the close of their college course yonth receive education for their own sake; in the university they are to learn how to be useful to others. And although that end may be attained by many different ways, yet fundamentally it lies in the right directing of enterprise, and toward the forming of public sentiment accordingly, and through the channel of professional effort.

The best service a man can render his fellow-men is generally in the line of his profession; but there is also an indefinable influence for good or evil wielded by every respectable professional man, through his intercourse with society, and which increases in power and extent with his professional success. Consequently the common duty belonging to all educated men is that of guiding public sentiment aright; that is, in a manner conducive to the good order of community, to the support of enlightened enterprise, and the cause of God, peace, and good will among men.

By profession, in these remarks, we would not be understood to mean only medicine, law, and theology, but every learned occupation, demanding, for true success in it, a basis of liberal culture.

One of the things which it belongs to the college to teach, is the reliability of truth; that there are principles trustworthy and eternal, many of which can be known indubitably, and ought to be so known by all educated men. This position should be abundantly sustained from every branch of science, that the young mind may be well fortified in regard to it. Immense evil has been done by the false dictum, so often repeated, that nothing can be known for certain. It puts the mind in a state of universal scepticism, defeating all the most valuable ends of education. It is chiefly with a view to the inculcation and full exposition of this doctrine that the precise sciences should be taught in college. The fuller study of mathematics belongs to the engineer or astronomer, and accordingly to university work; the minute study of chemistry belongs to the professions founded thereupon, but their fundamental principles ought to be well enough explained and substantiated for youth in college, to establish in their minds conviction and confidence in their reliability. A minuteness of instruction, beyond the demands of this purpose, is out of the

proper line of college work, and belongs to the university. At the same time, to prevent the evil of confidence in the the wrong place, the bounds of actual knowledge ought also to be set forth, and the vagueness of conjecture, where nothing but conjecture exists, should be distinctly set over against positive knowledge, where that exists. How to test the credible and distinguish its features, and what features mark any thing as incredible, is a point essentially belonging to the same connection.

For such purpose was geometry employed by the Greeks, and law by the Romans. Law, studied as a profession, is out of place in a college course; but law, to all the extent of inculcating the reality of the great principles of civil order, is one of the most valuable instruments at the disposal of liberal education.

A good college education may as properly be laid out upon a youth destined to be a merchant, or a farmer, or a tradesman, as upon one who has a view to a learned profession. The difference is only that the liberal professions demand, if not by rule, by the nature of the case, previous attainment in college studies, and other occupations do not so demand it. There can be little doubt, however, that all the respectable occupations of human life would be better conducted if in the hands of liberally educated men. But that implies a · breadth of culture extending to all the studies prior to, and independent of, the particular professional training. Most industrial pursuits depend upon science. But an education containing nothing but science is not a liberal one. It cultivates only a part of a man, and that the harder part, which it hardens. There can ‘be no liberal culture without art: and the most available of all arts for the purpose is that of literature.

The work of Professor Porter, of Yale College, the name of which stands at the head of this article, is a defence, and a very able defence, of the system and methods pursued in the oldest and best American colleges. Commencing with an historical review of the rise and progress of the existing agitation on that subject, the author takes up the line of argument, as before the bar of the American public, and discusses the studies of the regular course, in comparison with those now recommended as better; the enforcement of fidelity in study, us compared with greater license; the evils of the college system, and their remedies; the common life of the college; the religious character of American colleges; the class system, and other kindred topics, in all of which he defends, in the main, the state of things as it is. With a clear and full admission that it is not without many faults, he maintains that the existing system has within itself better aptitudes for reform than are to be found in any of the novelties which are now by many persons proposed to take its place. His argument covers the whole ground, and is sustained in a lucid and animated style with the cogency which naturally grows from a full knowledge of the subject, and long experience in dealing with it in all its details.

ART. VIII.--The Invitation Heeded. Reasons for a Return

to Catholic Unity. By James KENT STONE, late President of Kenyon College, Gambier, Ohio; and of Hobart College, Geneva, New York ; and S. T. D. Fourth Edition. New

York: The Catholic Publication Society. 1870. Ilow the Rev. Dr. Stone Bettered his Situation : An Exami

nation of the Assurance of Salvation and Certainty of Belief to which we are affectionately invited by his Holiness the Pope. By LEONARD WOOLSEY Bacon. Reprinted from the New Englander, July, 1870. New York: American

and Foreign Christian Union, 27 Bible IIouse. Lecture on the Vatican Council. By ARCHBISHOP PURCELL.

The author of the “ In ion Heeded” is a son of one of the most distinguished ministers of the Protestant Episcopal Church in this country—especially of the class known as Low Church. If we are not misinformed he is also descended from that great jurist whose name he bears—the late Chancellor Kent, whose “Commentaries” are among the foremost standard authorities in American jurisprudence. We infer from this volume that he had for some time been investigating the great questions treated in it, before he was greeted with the late formal invitation extended by the Roman pontiff to all Protestants to put themselves under his jurisdiction. He

« ElőzőTovább »