Page:Convocation Addresses of the Universities of Bombay and Madras.djvu/312

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19
1862.—Rev. R. Halley.

invested with manly arms. You have yet to win in the field the full honours of the Knight banneret, but now you are no longer squires, as knights you must conduct yourselves. Go forth to the tournament, let knowledge be your spear, but let truth be your mistress—she sits, the Queen of the Fair, to watch the day, and from her hands shall you receive the prize of the valiant. Wearing her favours, what a motive to the knightly virtues! And the first of them is loyalty. Be loyal to her whom you have chosen, for her do battle, whoever may oppose—whatever your object, you cannot deprave the truth.

Arrayed in the lists are the champions of Error—she presumes to sit in rivalry with Truth—she! Antiquity, the champion of error. with her brazen face, shaking her gaudy ribbons! And who are her champions? There is grey-haired Antiquity, who in many lists has unhorsed the champions of Truth; whilst he deals his hardest blows, he will recount for your dismay his victories of old, and if the battle goes hard with him, he will cease his vauntings, and will appeal to your knightly magnanimity, reminding you that he was the friend of your fathers. Spare him if he will leave the lists, but so long as he is in arms for her rival, you must not, you dare not be disloyal to the Truth. He may taunt you as striplings, he may ridicule your mistress, he may laugh at your juvenile enthusiasm; but the day is yours, if you are stout of heart—before your weapon, knowledge, he cannot stand.

But side by side with Antiquity, yet strangely contrasted, are

champions of Error, Other champions of Error. your equals in years. They are the sons of Pride, dubbed knights on the same day with yourselves, they have grown up in your company, and will prove loyal to error, as long as you leave them unslain. Unhorse them to-day, they will utter their defiance tomorrow; with them it must be war to the death. They are Crude Speculation, Juvenile Conceit, Dogmatism and Presumption. They hate the Truth with utter hatred, for they have tested her scorn. They would have sworn themselves hers, but she rejected them with disdain. And now they have taken their place as Error's knights-bachelors. Their sinister countenances are well-concealed, as in full armour they stand, fair to the eye of the inexperienced. With dazzling brilliance they advance, their plumes are bright, their devices gay, their lances sparkle in the sun; but though stalwart their form and gallant their bearing, make no friendship with them ; they are sons of Pride, and like their father, they hate the truth, they have embittered hearts;