we ought to attach vast value to the men who with calmness and determination seek the truth, in its wholeness, on whatever line of investigation, not diluting it or masking it.
Their zeal, their devotion, their faith, furnish one of those very protests which are most needed against that low tone of political ideas which in its lower strata is political corruption. Their life gives that very example of a high spirit, aim, and work, which the time so greatly needs.
In this view, then, sir, do I most heartily welcome our friend as a strong leader—not only in scientific, but in political and general progress. His influence has spread far beyond his lecture-room; nay, it shall spread far beyond those who have read or shall read his lectures.
I might speak of his quickening influence on one body of men—five hundred strong—assembled in one of our newer institutions of learning. But that influence extends far beyond those who stand in institutions of learning. The reverence for scientific achievement, the revelation of the high honors which are in store for those who seek for truth in science—the inevitable comparison between a life devoted to that great pure search, on one hand, and a life devoted to place-hunting or self-grasping on the other—all these shall come to the minds of thoughtful men in lonely garrets of our cities, in remote cabins on our prairies, and thereby shall come strength and hope for higher endeavor.
And, Mr. Chairman, as this influence for good spreads and strengthens, I have faith that gratitude will bring in results for political good of yet another kind.
Many predecessors of our friend have, as literary men, strengthened the ties that bind together the old land and the new; and I trust that love, admiration, and gratitude, between men of science on both sides the Atlantic, which our guest has done so much to arouse, may add new cords and give strength to old cords which unite the hearts of the two great English-speaking nations.
MY DEAR SIR: In answer to yours of the 6th, I may say that, being familiar with all the circumstances relating to the discovery and naming of Mount Tyndall, I was asked to respond to a toast alluding to this, at the dinner given in honor of Prof. Tyndall on the 4th, but which want of time prevented being called for. You now ask me for an abstract of what I intended to say. I will give it (as nearly as I can), and this the more willingly, as his success, as a
- Letter to Prof. Mayer, Secretary to Committee of the Tyndall Banquet.