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Erasmus therefore approved of the practice of Speusippus, who caused the pictures of joy and gladness to be set round about his school; "to signify, (as the excellent archbishop Tillotson observes,) that the business of education ought to be rendered as pleasant as may be; and that children stand in need of all enticements and encouragements to learning and goodness imaginable: for, (as one says,) Metus haud diuturni magister officii, fear alone will not teach a man his duty, and hold him to it; but rather causes a lasting disgust to both learning and virtue, (and to use Erasmus's words,) Virtutem simul odisse et nosse."
Thus we find Erasmus was of a contrary opinion; and more for the merciful and gentle way of education: who therefore was almost angry with the dean and his two masters. He judged of human nature according to his own share of it; and therefore was for the milder and softer ways of teaching. He seems to wish that boys could play and learn at the same time; and it is with approbation and pleasure that he tells this story of an English gentleman. “One day seeing his little son very fond of shooting, bought him a fine bow and arrows, which was painted with the letters of the Greek and Latin alphabet : and so for the but, or mark to shoot at; the like capital letters were drawn upon it: and when he hit a letter, and could tell the name of it, he had, besides the ap. plause of the bystanders, a cherry, or some such trifle, for his reward."
Erasmus also was a great enemy to that laborious way of trifling and losing time, which had · lately obtained in grammar schools; the going round as it were, in a mill, with sweat and noise, and getting by heart so many lines, without understanding the sense of them; too much the custom of idleness in England and Holland. He showed also a very good judgment; that boys should be sent early to a grammar school, before their minds are corrupted with any ill habit of tenderness, slothfulness, or other impediment of learning; and then that they should not be taken away too soon to the university, to be confounded with logic, before they rightly understand their grammar; and, in a manner, to unlearn the little they had learned at school.
Sir Thomas More likewise doth often complain of the then vulgar method of teaching grammar, and the intricate systems of it; particularly of the Parva Logicalia of Albertus, full of abstruse and trifling rules to puzzle and confound the poor boys.
But Erasmus was, above all, solicitous for the morals and virtuous dispositions of children. He would have them read no authors but what were clean and chaste, and be in no company but what was innocent and uninfected.
We find by one of the dean's statutes, he was much of his mind; for he orders several Christian authors, (viz., Lactantius, Sedulus, Juvencus, &c.,) to be used in his school, for fear the childrens' morals should be corrupted by some of the heathen writers.
Erasmus also thought boys carried from school, as from their first vessel, that savor or tincture of good and evil that prevailed in all their following course of life, and gave them the right or the wrong bent and turn, to be wise and useful in their generation, or to be a sort of rakes and reprobates for ever.
He used to talk over this subject with dean Colet, upon the occasion of discoursing about the masters and scholars of Paul: and the dean fully declared himself of the same opinion, that boys would imbibe their principles and morals from the books and the company they conversed with. It is probable, that upon this observation the dean made it a proverbial saying of his, “We are all such as our conversation is, and come habitually to practice what we frequently hear." This apothegm, or wise saying of dean Colet, is remembered by Erasmus in his elaborate collection of Adages; and is preferred before any of the sentences of the ancient philosophers.
On this solid foundation, with a Governing Body removed from the temptation of devoting the funds from their legitimate purpose, and with a liberty of action to meet the altered circumstances of a progressive society-with teachers, books, subjects, and methods of study, in advance of any existing school, St. Paul entered at once on a work of beneficence which entitles its founder to a high place among the benefactors of his country and his race. In the long and brilliant array of Paulines, trained by Lilly and his successors, we distinguish such names as the Norths, [Sir Edward, Francis, Lord Guilford, Dr. John, Sir Dudley, Frederic, Lord North, the premier from 1770 to 1782,) John Leland, William Camden, John Milton, Samuel Pepys, Benjamin Calamy, Roger Cotes, John the Great Duke of Marlborough, Sir Philip Francis, Bishop Hooper, Bishop Bradford, Halley the astronomer, Bishop Fisher, Sir Frederick Pollock, Sir Charles Wetherell, Lord Chancellor Truro, Professor Jowett, &c., &c.
Few public schools can claim to have educated more men who figure promi. nently in English history than this foundation of John Colet, and with such modifications in its governing body, and in the fundamental ordinances as this wise man anticipated to be necessary and provided for making on the advice of "good lettered and learned men," it will still contribute largely to the schol. arship and statesmanship of England.
List of the High or Upper Masters of St. Paul's School. 1512. William Lilly, continued 10 yrs. 1657. S. Cromleholme, contin. 15 yrs. 1522. John Ritwyse, " 10" 1672. Dr. Thomas Gale, " 25 " 1532. Richard Jones, " 17" 1697. John Postlethwayte, “ 16 1549. Thomas Freeman,“ 10 “ 1713. Philip Ascough, “ 8 1559. John Cooke,
14 " 1721. Benjamin Morland, " 12 1573. William Malym, " 8 " 1733. Timothy Crumpe, d. 1737, 4 " 1581. John Harrison, " 15" 1737. George Charles, D.D., " 11 " 1596. Rich'd Mulcaster, " 12" 1748. Geo. Thicknesse, res'd," 21 " 1608. Alexander Gill, " 27 " 1769. Richard Roberts, D.D.,“ 45 1635. Dr. Alexand'r Gill," 5 " 1814. John Sleath, D.D., “ 24 " 1640. John Langley, " 17" 1838. Herbert Kynaston.
Educational Staff in 1865.
The Royal Commisioners recommend the appointment by the Court of As. sistants, of a Lecturer on Natural Science; and that the High Master be authorized to appoint a German teacher, and masters of Drawing and Music, and that half-yearly prizes be given for proficiency in these subjects, and in Natural Science.
II. REPORT OF HER MAJESTY'S COMMISSIONERS—1864. History. The Commissioners do not go largely into the history of this school --quoting Erasmus's authority that "it was the best school in his time," and that it reached its palmy state in the time of Dr. Sleath, (1814–1838,) but that of late it has fallen off in its share of academical distinctions.
Endowments. The income of the property conveyed by deed and will of Dean Colet to the Mercers' Company, for the support of this school, at the time of the foundation, was £118, 4s. 7d, he having expended on the buildings £4,500. The income for 1860 was £9,549, 168. 5d. Of this sum, £2,370 only were paid out as stipends to the masters. The Mercers' Company claim that they are beneficially interested in the surplus, which has now accumulated to a very large sum; and which might quadruple the educational objects of the foundation.
Government of the School. The Governing Body of the school is the Master, Wardens, and Fellows of the Mercers' Company, who annually choose "two honest and substantial men, called Surveyors of the School," whose main business seem to be, to enter the school on certain fixed days four times a year to pay the masters their quarterly stipends. The Governing Body can take the advice of "well-litterate and learned men, to supply any default as time and place and just occasion shall demand." The examinations are conducted by experts specially appointed, but with no authority beyond recommendations.
Masters and their stipends. In place of the high master, sub-masters, and chaplain of the original ordinances, there are at present seven masters; four classical, one for mathematics, and two for French. The present stipends paid out of the school revenues are as follows: High Master,
...........150 Assistant French Master, ......................100 "In addition to the above, the high master has the rents of two houses at Stepney, a residence for himself” contiguous to the school, “ with rates, taxes, and repairs found him, and a gown every year.” The other three classical masters have likewise residences, the rates and taxes of which are paid for them, and a "gown every year."
As the original number of eight classes fixed by the founder has been retained to the present day, it follows that each classical master, the high master included, has the entire charge of two classes of from fifteen to twenty boys each.
The Commissioners recommend the appointment of an additional classical master, to give the head master amplo time for general superintendence and occasional examinations of the school. They also advise that provision be made for instruction in German, music, drawing, and natural science. And that all the teachers constitute a School Council, and that the head master have the appointment of his own assistants, who are now, including the head mag
ter, appointed annually by the Board of Assistants, and removable at their pleasure.
Scholars. Every boy is a scholar on the foundation, from the moment of his admission, and the number is limited to 163-a faithful adherence to the letter of the Dean's ordinance, but not the spirit—as the boys are admitted on nomination by each member of the Court of Assistants, in rotation.
"The examination to which the nominees are subjected is of the most elementary description, and does not even reach the standard fixed in the original Ordinances, to say nothing of that higher standard which the altered condition of the times evidently suggests; and though we are informed that one distinguished member of the Court has introduced an important improvement in the case of his own nominees, it does not appear that this enlightened example bas been followed by others. It is not too much to say that so far as regards the personal and intellectual fitness of its recipients, the benefits of a gratuitous education are conferred at hap-hazard, and with these benefits the chance, at least, of a handsome provision at the university. The contrast which this mode of appointment presents to the excellent and most successful system DON in force at Eaton and Winchester is too obvious to need illustration; and without instituting comparisons which may seem invidious, it is clear that in this respect the practice of the school falls as far short of the ideas and requirements of the present age, as the directions of the founder rose above those of his own day.
We may even go further, and say that the present system of admission is positively injurious to the cause of education, inasmuch as it offers a temptation to parents to neglect the early training of their children; and we have it on the authority of the high master that this temptation is but too often yielded to. "Some," he says, "are occasionally brought to us even twelve years old, utterly ignorant of the first elements of the commonest knowledge." And the evil seems to be a growing one. Formerly the best boys came at eleven or twelve years of age, having previously had some good training; but now the case is reversed, and they either come a little younger, knowing nothing at all, or at the same age, knowing a little more; so that they must be taught their accidence."
These evils are indeed but the natural result of the vicious system of nomination, and can only be cured by introducing some form of competition among the candidates for admission. We should prefer that such competition should be unrestricted, as it is at Eaton or Winchester; but even in a modified form, it would be of great value; and in recommending the following scheme we are confident that we act in accordance with the intentions of the liberal and far-sighted founder.
Let two examinations be held annually, to be conducted either by two of the masters, or by two paid examiners appointed for the purpose. On the occasion of each examination, let any member of the Court who may desire it, have the privilege of nominating two or three candidates, so as to provide a body of fifty or sixty candidates for each ten or fifteen vacancies. After the examination, let a list be formed of the candidates in the order of merit, those standing first on the list to be first admitted, and those who fail to obtain admission in the course of the half year, to have one other chance, if their patrons choose to nominate them at the next half-yearly examination. This scheme to remain in force so long as the school shall remain on its present site. We suggest eleven as the minimum and fourteen as the maximum age of candidates for admission.
Classes-Promotion. The scholars are distributed into eight classes, as fixed by Dean Colet, and the classes are counted from the lowest upward. The youngest boy was nine years and nine months, and the oldest eighteen and five months. The disparities of age in the middle classes is a very great injury to the principle of promotion—which depends on proficiency in classical scholarship, including, to some extent, history and geography. The Commissioners recommend that the conditions of promotion should be enlarged so as to include mathematics, and one modern language, as well as some allowance for proficiency in music and drawing. The rank stated before on the results of special examination and daily class marks in each study.
The exhibitions annually awarded are as follows:
One of £100, and one of £80, founded by Lord Viscount Campden, and ten. able only at Trinity College, Cambridge.
One or more of £50 tenable, without restriction, at Oxford or Cambridge.
These are awarded in accordance with results of the examination by examiners specially appointed every year, in which mathematical marks count as one to three of classical.
Besides these larger exhibitions, there is one of £30, and four of £10 each, at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge; five of £13 a year at Trinity, and two of £10 at St. John's College-each awarded on certain conditions.
Prizes are annually awarded for Greek iambics, Latin hexameters, Latin Esgays and English Essays, but none for Natural Science, German, or French, Music or Drawing.
Rewards are also bestowed on pupils of St. Paul who obtain distinction at the university, or in competitive examinations instituted by parliamentary authority.
The Commissioners remark, that the exhibitions are too numerous and too easily obtained, and that the remedy is to change the mode and age of admission, and make the exhibitors tenable at any college. They also recommend that prizes should be given for proficiency in German, natural science, music and drawing. A writer in Blackwood's Magazine on the London Schools, remarks:
"St Paul's is lavish in prizes and exhibitions to the universities—too lavish in proportion to the amount of competition for them, as the head master boldly complains, and as the Commissioners fully agree. There are usually not more than five or six boys who go off to college every year, (a strangely small proportion, when it is considered that the 153 scholars are "almost invariably" the sons of clergymen or professional men—"West End boys, ") and all of them get exhibitions. The captain of the year gets one of £120, for four years, tenable with any scholarship at any college in either university; the next has one of £100 to Trinity, Cambridge; the next £80, and the Court give as many of £50 each as may be required,“ to any one that the examiners say is fit to go to the university." Besides this liberal provision, the Court of Assistants is in the habit of giving an honorarium to those who after leaving school obtain scholarships or honors at the universities, or what the Commissioners term "certain supposed distinctions in public competitive examinations." Not less than £160 was expended under this head in the year 1860. The Secretary, in draw