Page:Convocation Addresses of the Universities of Bombay and Madras.djvu/108

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93
1878.-Sir Richard Temple.

that if the surface of the ground be cool, then the clouds become condensed and their moisture descends as rain; that such coolness cannot exist, unless the ground be covered with vegetation; that if the surface be bare, arid and heated, the clouds move onward, and the ground remains rainless. Yet the people destroy the forests, and leave the ground denuded, without thought of the drought and famine which must ensue sooner or later.

In all these sciences the instruction should be practical, that is, it should be imparted in immediate contact with the objects concerned; not only in the class room, but in the very presence of the things to which the lectures refer. Botany should be taught in the garden or in the field; chemistry in the laboratory; physiology in the midst of animal life.

Connected with these topics there is the subject of physical geography. It nearly concerns the history of human progress. The Native youth should be taught how the mountains attract the clouds which drop moisture, produce vegetation, and supply the sources of streams; how the streams cause that fertility of the lands which enables the human race to rapidly multiply, to constitute society and to found cities; how the rivers, formed from the union of streams, become the highways of commerce.

Under the head of secondary instruction come all the technical schools which we have established or may yet establish. Those Natives who reflect on the improvements which are advancing in Western India—such as the introduction of mechanical appliances, the new manufacturing industries, the development of artificial needs, the application of arts and sciences to the practical affairs of the national life—will see how many fresh lines of employment are being opened out. The aim of technical instruction is to help Native youths to qualify themselves for earning a livelihood as medical practitioners, as chemists, as foresters, as scientific gardeners, as land-surveyors, as civil engineers, as trained mechanics, as engravers.

But, although practical knowledge must occupy a larger part than heretofore in our middle class education, we must continue to bestow care as much as ever, or more than ever, on ethical instruction and moral culture. Happily, Native opinion is alive to the value of such instruction and culture, and will cordially support the efforts of the educational authorities.

In the middle class schools there are about 5,000 girls under instruction. These girls' schools are managed entirely by private effort. The fact may be hailed as the beginning of female education. The gradual augmentation of the number of