Page:Convocation Addresses of the Universities of Bombay and Madras.djvu/576

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288
1891.—Dr. Duncan.

them beyond the bounds of prudence and legality? This difficulty can surely be met and overcome by a society which possesses men with the judicial acumen and calmness of the Honorable Mr. Justice Muttuswami Aiyar. If you wish the movement to be under the aegis of the highest academic culture of your Alma Mater, and to be presented to the public with all the charms of literary grace, have you not in men like Rai Bahadur Ranganatha Mudaliyar the embodiment of all that is best in the culture of the East and the West? If within the Senate of your University there are men with so many of the diverse and necessary qualifications for carrying to a successful issue a great social reformation, may you not assume that throughout the land there are many such, waiting merely for you to say: "Come over and help us? The main thing required is to make you feel in its full force the urgency of the question. Need I repeat that we are not dealing with a matter of a little more or a little less of benefit to a small section of the community, but with the removal of an evil which is eating out the very vitals of your society?

I have endeavoured, ladies and gentlemen, to the best of my ability, to point out to you some of the ways in which you will best fulfil the promises you have made to promote the cause of morality and sound learning and the well-being of your fellow-men. The responsibility laid upon you is heavy, and I have not sought to lighten it. Let the good name of your University be one of your most cherished possessions. Except as affiliated to that world-wide University, which embraces all the schools that, through the ages, have kept alive the sacred flame of knowledge, your Alma Mater cannot boast of a hoary antiquity. But, though the traditions you have to maintain may not claim the sanction of centuries, yet, young as they are, they deserve to be held in reverence. To cherish the lofty traditions of a long bye-gone past is a worthy task; your task is a worthier one. For it devolves on you to formulate the principles and to work out the practices that will become in due course the traditions of future generations. Let it be your earnest endeavour so to conduct yourselves that those traditions shall in the years to come tend to the highest good of this ancient land. Your University while laying upon you grave responsibilities, does not demand impossible achievements. You are not called upon to forego your own private advancement, nor the well-being of those with whom you are connected by ties of kindred. In common with your less favoured fellow-countrymen you will engage in the ordinary duties of life, pur-