Page:Convocation Addresses of the Universities of Bombay and Madras.djvu/173

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University of Bombay.

instincts, the intuitions and the cherished habits of our British race, before their intelligence was enlightened and convinced. The soreness of the struggle has not quite passed away. But I feel certain that when a generation has elapsed they will feel not less kindly to Lord Ripon than he now feels to them. In their reflections of the future, they cannot as Englishman but admire the tenacity of purpose, genuineness of character, and command of temper which they individually bow down to in the circle of their friends.

We have thus seen history as it were in the making and watched the influence of a calm commanding mind over the current of events and the form of constitutional growth. The Christian spirit of Lord Ripon. Let me further remind my Native friends that here they have as their friend not only a politician, but a Christian man. We had a few years ago to commemorate an eminent and able man, a late Vice-Chancellor of this University, Dr. Wilson. I ventured then to say in the presence of a large majority of Native friends who were not Christians, that it was not in spite of his Christianity but in virtue of his Christianity that Dr. Wilson became all he was to their people, and I say now that the Christian spirit which has animated Lord Ripon and so many of his predecessors, has been of untold benefit to this country. Hence should some charity and love be learnt from this Christianity even by those who reject its dogmas. The same invincible moral courage that has supported martyrs at the stake and block is fruitful still in making men submit to toil and suffering and obloquy for the sake of their fellow-men. Viewed from this standpoint the career of Lord Ripon in this country has given to Englishmen and Natives alike reason to be proud of the association between the two countries. He, too, comes from that land not only of the pioneers of the forest and wilderness, but of Howard, Clarkson, Wilberforce, of Mrs. Fry and of Miss Nightingale, and in their spirit he has conducted the administration. It has been by his love and tenderness for the weak and those who needed aid that he has won a return of affection and confidence beyond any other Viceroy amongst all who have ruled this country. The manifestations of popular opinion and popular approval such as Lord Ripon has been overwhelmed with during the last few weeks are calculated not only to give him just joy and satisfaction, but they are calculated also to produce a great effect upon the great people of England. Never before I believe, has the community of this country shown so well that it possesses strong elements of political life and how capable it is of entering in due time into the wider and nobler future