Page:An Academic Sketch.djvu/45

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The Romanes Lecture 1892

dwindle; the other that, under pressure from without, they should lean, if ever so little, to that theory of education, which would have it to construct machines of so many horse-power, rather than to form character, and to rear into true excellence the marvellous creature we call man; which gloats upon success in life, instead of studying to secure that the man shall ever be greater than his work, and never bounded by it, but that his eye shall boldly run (in the language of Wordsworth)

Along the line of limitless desires.

And this leads us nearly back to the point from which we began. The University, at its inception, was at least in its secondary aspect a guarantee against the unchecked predominance of the ecclesiastical order. The spiritual and the temporal or secular elements, so to call them, dwelt side by side through a long course of generations, in standing competition, even in occasional strife, but in strife which never even threatened to become estrangement. They worked, upon the whole, in concert; and jointly they achieved a noble result. It is not among the favourable signs of our own era, that this concord has been broken, in some European countries, by the total expulsion or disappearance of theology from the academic precinct[1]. I have no fear of our witnessing here any

  1. The latest act in this retrograde operation has been, I fear, in Italy, which may be said to have given the Universities to Christendom. In every one of her Universities, as I understand, the theological faculty has been extinguished.