« ПретходнаНастави »
the heroes and statesmen to whom we owe our national existence, and our constitution its perpetual illastration and defence, what are they but so many standing witnesses to the deep wisdoin, in which our institutions for the education of young men have been founded ?
But our present purpose is not to go into a discussion upon the great principles of university education. In this paper, we propose merely to give a brief account of the University of Cambridge, in England. We shall offer a concise description of its government; its course of studies, with the forms and methods of examination ; its degrees and other honors; and, in conclusion, a few sketches of college life, which appear to us to be worthy of notice, as compared with college life in this country.
The University of Cambridge is a society of students in all the liberal arts and sciences, incorporated by the name of the Chancellor, Masters, and Scholars of the University of Cambridge. It consists of seventeen colleges, each of which is a body corporate, and bound by its own statutes ; but they are all subject to the paramount laws of the University. Each college furnishes members both for the executive and legislative branches of the government. The legislative branch of the government consists of the two divisions of the Senate, and a council called the Caput. The senate consists of all who are masters of arts, or doctors in either of the three faculties, divinity, civil law, or physic, having their names the college boards, holding any office in the University, or being resident in the town of Cambridge. They generally number about two thousand. They are divided into two classes, called the regents and the non-regents.
The regents, or members of the upper house, or white-hood house, as it is called from the members wearing hoods lined with white silk, are masters of arts of less than five years' standing, and doctors of less than two.
The non-regent or lower house, called also the black-hood house, from the members wearing black silk hoods, includes all the rest. But doctors of more than two years' standing, and the public orator of the University, may vote in either house.
The council, called the Caput, consists of the vice-chancellor, a doctor in each of the faculties, divinity, civil law, and physic, and two masters of arts to represent the regent and non-regent houses. The vice-chancellor is a
member of the caput, by virtue of his office. The other members of this council are chosen as follows. The vicechancellor and the two proctors nominate severally five persons; and out of these fifteen, the heads of colleges, doctors, and scrutators elect five, commonly honoring the vice-chancellor's list with the appointment. Every proposition of a university law, or grace, must be approved by the caput, every member having a negative voice, before it can be presented to the consideration of the two houses of the senate.
Meetings for the transaction of university business, called congregations, are held about once a fortnight, and a list of the days of such meetings is published by the vice-chancellor at the beginning of each
term. The vice-chancellor may call the senate together for the despatch of extraordinary affairs, at other times, by causing a printed notice, specifying the business, to be hung up in the halls of the several colleges, three days before the time of assembly. Any number of the senate, not less than twenty-five, including the proper officers, constitute a quorum, and may proceed to business. Besides these meetings, there are others called statutable congregations, or days of assembly enjoined by the statutes, for the ordinary routine of university affairs, such as conferring degrees, electing officers, &c., for which no special notice is required. A congregation may also be held without three days' notice, provided forty members of the senate be present. Every member has a right to bring any proposition or grace before the senate, if it has been previously approved by the caput. When it has passed the caput, it is read in the non-regent house by one of the scrutators, and in the regent house by the senior proctor. It is read in like manner at the second congregation. If a non placet is put in by a member of the nonregent house, the vote is then taken. If the number of non placets equals or exceeds the number of placets, the grace is thrown out. If the placets are more than the non placets, it is carried up to the regent house, and there undergoes the same process. If it passes through both houses, it is considered a regular act of the senate, and if the subject be of a public nature, it becomes a statute. No degree is conferred without a grace, which passes through the process above described. A grace of this kind is called a supplicat. Those for bachelor of arts, honorary degrees, and masters of arts of King's College, require to be read at one congregation only. The executive of the University consists of the following officers :
The chancellor. This officer is the head of the University, and has sole authority within the precincts, except in cases of mayhem and felony. He seals the diplomas and letters of
. degrees, &c. given by the University, defends its rights and privileges, convokes assemblies, and administers justice to the members under his jurisdiction.
The high steward, who has the power of trying scholars impeached of felony within the limits of the University, and to hold and keep a leet according to the established charter and custom. He appoints a deputy by letters patent, which are confirmed by a grace of the senate.
The vice-chancellor. This officer is elected annually by the senate, on the 4th of November, and, as his title indicates, has the power of the chancellor, in the government of the University, and the execution of the statutes, when the chancellor is absent. He is required, by an order made in 1587, to be the head of some college ; and he acts as a magistrate for the University and county.
The commissary is an officer under the chancellor, and holds a court of record for all privileged persons and scholars under the degree of M. A. for the trial of causes by the civil and statute law, and by the custom of the University.
The public orator writes, reads, and records the letters to and from the body of the senate, and presents to all honorary degrees with an appropriate speech.
The assessor is an officer specially appointed by grace of the senate, to assist the vice-chancellor in causis forensibus et domesticis.
The two proctors are peace officers, annually elected. They inust be masters of arts, of at least two years' standing, and are regents by virtue of their office. Their duty is to watch over the discipline of all persons in statu pupillari, to search houses of ill fame, and take into custody loose and abandoned or suspected women. They are also required to be present at all congregations of the senate, to stand in scrutiny with the chancellor or vice-chancellor, to take the suffrages of the house, both by word and writing, to read them and declare the assent or dissent accordingly, to read the graces in the regent house, to take secretly the assent or dissent, and openly to pronounce the
The librarian's duties are designated by his title. The registrary is required, either by himself or deputy, to attend all congregations, to direct the form of the graces to be propounded, and to enter them on the university records, when they have passed both houses. He also registers the seniority of such as proceed annually in any of the arts and faculties, according to the schedules furnished him by the proctors. The two taxors are masters of arts, and regents by virtue of their office. They regulate the markets, examine the assize of bread, the lawfulness of weights and measures, and call the abuses thereof into the commissary's court. The scrutators are non-regents. Their duty is to attend all congregations, to read the graces in the lower house, to take the votes secretly or openly, and to declare the assent or dissent of that house. The moderators are nominated by the proctors, and appointed by a grace of the senate. They superintend the exercises and disputations in philosophy, and the examinations for the degree of bachelor of arts, in the place of the proctors. — The three esquire bedells are required to precede the vice-chancellor with silver maces, upon all public occasions and solemnities. They bring the doctors present in the regent house to open scrutiny, there to deliver their suffrages by word or writing ; they receive the graces from the vicechancellor and caput, and deliver them first to the scrutators in the lower house, and, if they are granted, carry them to the proctors in the upper house. They attend the professors and respondents in the three faculties, from their colleges to the schools, and during the continuance of the several acts. They collect fines from the members of the University, and summon the members of the senate to the chancellor's court. — The university printer, the library-keeper, the under librarykeeper, and the school-keeper, are elected by the body at large; the yeoman bedell is appointed by letters patent under the hand and seal of the chancellor ; and the university marshal, in the same manner, by the vice-chancellor.
The University has two courts of law, the consistory court of the chancellor, and the consistory court of the commissary. The former is held by the chancellor, or in his absence, by the vice-chancellor, assisted by some of the heads of colleges, and one or more doctors of the civil law. All pleas and actions personal, as of debts, accounts, contracts, &c., or of any injury begun or grown within the limits of the University, and not concerning mayhem and felony, are heard and decided in this court, and the manner of the proceeding is according to the civil law. An appeal lies from this court to the senate. The latter is held by the commissary, acting by authority deputed to him under the seal of the chancellor. He takes knowledge and proceeds in all causes, as above, except that causes and suits to which the proctors or taxors, or any of them, or a master of arts, or any other of superior degree is a party, are reserved to the jurisdiction of the chancellor or vice-chancellor. The manner of proceeding is the same in this as in the other court; and the party aggrieved is allowed, by statute, an appeal to the chancellor's court, and from thence to the delegates, if the cause and grief of the party render such application necessary.
The two members sent by the University to Parliament are chosen by the senate. The university counsel are appointed by grace of the senate, and the solicitor is appointed by the vice-chancellor. The syndics are members of the senate, chosen to transact all special affairs of the University. The professors have stipends allowed from various sources, from the university chest, from government, or from estates left for that purpose. The annual income of the university chest is about £16,000, and the annual expenditure about £12,000. The funds are under the management of the vice-chancellor, and the accounts are examined by three auditors, appointed annually by the senate. The terms of the University are three. The October or Michaelmas term begins on the 10th of October, and ends on the 16th of December ; Lent, or January term, begins on the 13th of January, and ends on the Friday before Palm Sunday ; Easter or Midsummer term begins on the 11th day after Easter day, and ends on the Friday after commencement, which is always the first Tuesday in July.
The seventeen colleges of the University were founded by different individuals, all of whom enjoined, first, the cultivation of religion, and then of polite literature and the sciences. The statutes of some of the colleges require the fellows to be born in England, in particular counties, &c. The fellowships at Trinity, St. John's, Sidney, Downing, Clare Hall, and Trinity Hall, are open to all competitors, and there is the following law with regard to all; “Whosoever hath one English parent, although he be born in another country, shall be