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378 a 3 E51f 57-05488 

Elton $4.50 

First fifty years of the Rhodes Trust 

and The Rhodes Scholarships 19031953 


JAM- 1978- 






from die 
portrait by 
James Gunn 
in the, 

Milner Hall, 
Rhodes House 

The First Fifty Years 


The Rhodes Trust and 
The Rhodes Scholarships 




First printed September, 1955 
Second impression March, 1956 

Printed in Great Britain for BASIL BLACKWELL & Morr, LIMITED 

by A. R. MOWBRAY & Co. LIMITED in the City of Oxford 

and bound at the KEMP HALL BINDERY 

Plates printed in Photogravure by HARRISON & SONS, LIMITED 
London, Hayes and High Wycombe 


BY THE Rx. HON. L. S. AMERY, C.H. 1 
Senior Rhodes Trustee 

IT is well that the story of the first fifty years of the Rhodes 
Trust should be told by those who have been themselves 
instrumental in interpreting and giving practical effect to the 
ideas and ideals embodied in Cecil Rhodes's memorable Will. 
Fortunate, too, that Sir Francis Wylie should, at the close of his 
long life, have been able to recall the circumstances, the diffi- 
culties and the humours of those early years in which his un- 
defeated enthusiasm and genial temper overcame the many 
initial obstacles which Oxford conservatism presented to his 
revolutionary deifaands. His reminiscences, Sir Carleton Allen's 
and Dr. Frank Aydelotte's, within the general framework of 
Lord Elton's summary, tell a story which will be of the liveliest 
interest, not only to past and present Rhodes Scholars, but to all 
concerned with the wider educational issues which underlie it. 

A survey such as this naturally raises and should in a measure 
at least answer two questions. What has Rhodes's benefaction 
enabled Oxford to give to those for whom it was intended and 
to the world outside? And what has Oxford, as a University, 
itself gained from that benefaction? 

Comparatively few Rhodes Scholars have attained high distinc- 
tion in active politics. But Rhodes's conception of public 
service was never confined to so narrow a field. The life of a 
country, especially of a young country, is shaped by its teachers 
and its lawyers quite as much as by its party politicians. In these 
two domains Rhodes Scholars have not only achieved out- 
standing success for themselves, but have made a powerful 
contribution to the national life of their countries. In a more 
limited sense Oxford has profoundly influenced teaching methods 

1 Mr. Amery died on September 16, 1955, while this volume was in the press. 


in both American and Commonwealth Universities. But more 
generally it is the outlook upon intellectual and moral problems 
which Rhodes Scholars have, in their very differing individual 
ways, derived from Oxford that has exercised its influence, not 
only in the case of teachers, but in all the professions that Rhodes 
Scholars have taken up. Such 'chain reactions* are no less power- 
ful because they are not susceptible to direct measurement. In 
any case the vast majority of Rhodes Scholars have taken away 
with them, not only an outlook, but a background of unfading 
memories and a sense of a world-wide comradeship which has 
meant much in their own lives. 

What of Oxford itself? There, too, we can note both the more 
immediate effect on the course of studies and the wider impact 
on the whole outlook and character of the University. As the 
survey brings out, the coming of the Rhodes Scholars at any 
rate hastened the breaking down of the old rigid insistence on 
Greek and Latin. But the tendency, in recent years at least, has 
been not so much to the detriment of the humanities, as to the 
widening of their purview, especially in the direction of social, 
political and economic studies. Again the practical needs of 
Rhodes Scholars have steadily reinforced the growing recognition 
of the importance of research, of the fact that a great University 
cannot live merely by transmitting an existing stock of knowledge 
and ideas, but must make its contribution to the enlargement of 
both. Where die Rhodes Scholars have come in has been that 
these changes have been accompanied by so great a simultaneous 
widening of Oxford's horizon. What was the University of one 
particular country, and, indeed, largely of a limited class, has 
come to feel itself the University, not only of a nation but of the 
whole English-speaking world; a universitas not only in the range 
of its studies but in the breadth and tolerance of its outlook; 
cherishing the traditions of the past as a guide to the endeavours 
and hopes of a wider future. 


volume, "which, is to be presented to all former Rhodes 
JL Scholars, is intended primarily for domestic consumption. 
Informal and episodic, it does not claim to be a history of the 
Rhodes Scholarships, still less a history of the Rhodes Trust. 
The core of it will be found in the personal rerniniscences, by 
Wylie and Allen, of fifty years of the Rhodes Scholarships, and 
the Rhodes Scholars, in Oxford. To these is appended a survey 
by Frank Aydelotte, American Secretary from 1918 to 1952, of 
the evolution of election procedure in the United States, our 
largest constituency, and incidentally of the influence which the 
Rhodes Scholarships have exercised there. As for myself, I have 
attempted to provide in advance the background against which 
these three stories may be read. The General Secretary is respon- 
sible to the Trustees for every aspect of the working of the Trust, 
and in the following pages I have tried to convey a brief intro- 
ductory impression of its world-wide activities and problems 
during the last fifty years. 



THE editor and publishers gratefully acknowledge the permission 
of the following to reproduce copyright photographs in this book. 

Mr. E. O. Hoppe, for Viscount Milner. 

Lafayette Ltd., for Sir George Parkin. 

Messrs. J. Russell & Sons, for Sir Carleton Allen. 

Mr. Paul Laib, for the portraits by James Gunn of Lord Hailey 

and the Rt. Hon. L. S. Amery. 
The Portrait Gallery by Douglas Glass in The Sunday Times, for 

Sir Edward Peacock. 
The Architect and Building News, for the front entrance of 

Rliodes House. 

The Times, for Mr. Geoffrey Dawson. 
The Bank of England, for Sir George Abell. 
The Oxford Mail, for Lord and Lady Elton. 
The Cape Times, for Mr. A. H. Gie. 
Planet News Ltd., for the recipients of Honorary Degrees at 

the Reunion Encaenia, 1953. 



PREFACE ....... V 

EDITOR'S FOREWORD . . . . . vii 

By Lord Elton 


I. THE BEGINNINGS . . . . - 3 


IH. WORLD WAR AGAIN . . . . 33 

IV. THE NEW ERA . . . . - 44 



By Sir Francis Wylie 


H. HRST ARRIVALS . . . . - 77 

m. SETTLING DOWN . . . . p2 

IV. WAR . . . . . . -103 

V. CHANGE ...... Ill 


By Sir Carleton Allen 

I. PRELIMINARY ...... I2p 

H. THE SYSTEM AT WORK . . . . -134 




By Frank Aydelotte 



THE UNITED STATES . . . . .185 



By Sir Carleton Allen 


1955 ...... 267 


The Founder ...... frontispiece 

The Earl of Rosebery .... facing page xiv 

The Earl Grey ........ xiv 

Alfred Beit i 

Sir Leander Starr Jameson, Bart. ..... i 

Viscount. Milner ....... 16 

Sir George R. Parkin ....... 16 

Sir Francis "Wylie ....... 17 

Sir Carleton Allen . . . . . . . 17 

'Rjiodes Scholar, no doubt !'..... 48 

The Rt. Hon. L. S. Amery 49 

Sir Edward Peacock ....... 49 

Rhodes House: the main entrance .... 64 

Rhodes House: the garden front ..... 65 

The Very Rev. John Lowe ...... 96 

Geoffrey Dawson ....... 96 

The Milner Hall, Rhodes House 97 

The Rt. Hon. Lord Hailey 112 

Mr. C. H. G. Millis 112 

Professor K. C. Wheare . . . . . .113 

Sir George Abell . - . . . . .113 

The Marquess of Lothian ...... 128 

Lord Elton and Lady Elton ...... 128 

The Three Generations of Wardens of Rliodes House, and 

their wives ........ 129 

Dr. Frank Aydelotte . . . . . . .160 


Sir John Behan facing page 160 

D. R. Michener 161 

A. H. Gie 161 

The recipients of honorary degrees at the Reunion 

Encaenia, 1953 

Conferment of ordinary degrees, Reunion, 1953 . . 177 


,. ,. , 

&$${'- : ;;:"i 'V ?? , ; ij A Trustee appointed by the Will 

i*y$& : $> -%'' .^ 

Resigned 1917 

From the cartoon by Spy, in Vanity Fair 


A Trustee appointed by the Will 

Died 1917 

From the cartoon by Spy, in Vanity Fair 


A Trustee appointed by the Will 
Died 1906 


A Trustee appointed by a codicil of the Will 
Died 1917 


A retrospect 




IN early April 1902, less than a fortnight after Mr. Rhodes's 
premature death, the startling contents of his Will were 
published, and the ground plan of the Rhodes Scholarships 
became known to the world. Suddenly, and much sooner than 
they had once had a right to expect, there had descended upon 
his first Trustees responsibilities of an unprecedented character 
and of unpredictable consequences; responsibilities, moreover, 
which, it may well have appeared to the world at large, they 
were curiously ill-fitted to discharge. For the complex task of 
winding up the great estate in South Africa and elsewhere, for 
the administration of the valuable properties in Rhodesia, for the 
judicious dispensing in due course of assistance to deserving 
individuals and causes, for all these familiar consequences of a 
great public benefaction who could have been better qualified 
than Lord Rosebery, Lord Milner and Lord Grey, the trusted 
elder statesmen, than Alfred Beit and Dr. Jameson, who in 
business and politics had long been Mr. Rhodes's intimate co- 
adjutors, Sir Lewis Michell, his trusted banker, and Bourchier 
Hawksley, his lawyer? The qualifications of his Trustees for 
administering a great educational foundation designed (at first) 
to bring to Oxford sixty y oun g Colonists' (twenty a year) with 
ninety-six 'young students from the United States of North 
America' (thirty-two a year) and fifteen 'students of German 
birth' (five a year) were, however, a good deal less obvious. 
For their academic experience was slight and their first-hand 
knowledge of Oxford slighter still. Lord Milner, who, from 
1914, or thereabouts, until his death, was to play a dominant 
role, had, it is true, long been a Fellow of New College; and 
Lord Rosebery, who was the chief influence during the early 


years of the Trust, had been sent down from Christ Church with- 
out a degree in 1869 owing to his refusal to part with his racing 
stud; but these appeared to be comparatively slender foundations 
on which to build the administration of so munificent and so 
revolutionary a benefaction to the University. 

ForthatMr. Rhodes's Will would be revolutionary was already 
apparent. His Scholars were to be selected not merely, like all 
other scholars, for scholastic attainments they must not be 
'merely bookworms' but for qualities of character which the 
Will particularized at some length. The Founder desired, as he 
had explained in a private letter, 'the best men for the world's 
fight'. Who, moreover, had previously imagined so sudden and 
formidable an influx of young 'Colonists' and young Americans 
into an ancient University? The first doubts and heart-searchings 
which the project naturally aroused at Oxford (and of which 
Sir Francis Wylie gives an amusing account later in this volume) 
had their counterpart both in the Empire and in the United 
States: if not a few Oxford dons trembled at the prospect of an 
incursion of young barbarians, there were those overseas who 
were disposed to shake their heads over the probable influence 
of an effete University upon the virile youth of the new world. 
Yet both the Founder's basic innovations proved seminal. The 
example of Scholarships awarded for qualities of character as 
well as intellect would in course of time be widely imitated both 
here and overseas, and the influx into Oxford from overseas 
which he initiated would prove to be the prelude to a steadily 
developing two-way traffic. Nor is the explanation simply that 
the Founder was both a visionary and a shrewd man of affairs. 
Although a devoted son of Oxford, he had spent his life far 
removed from Universities, and it was from without that his 
penetrating common sense was brought to bear upon the aca- 
demic scene. It is not, after all, so surprising that he should have 
selected Trustees whose varied qualifications did not include much 
collective experience of the University and its problems. 

But while it is true that Mr. Rhodes viewed the academic 
scene and its problems with the detachment and freshness of 


vision to be expected of an observer of genius from another 
world, it would be a profound mistake to think of the Founder, 
as some were at first inclined to think of him, as a man of action 
only, a stranger to the world of learning, whose unacademic 
prejudices were reflected in the novel character of his Scholar- 
ships. For this was the man who found time, in the intervals 
of a business career in South Africa, to travel five times to Oxford 
to obtain a University education, who loved Oxford and who 
read and pondered all his life. The Founder, Mr. Amery has 
written, 1 

has often been described as an Elizabethan; the suggestion behind the 
adjective being that with his patriotism and his vision there was 
something of the love of gain for the sake of power, and of the lack 
of scruple in the methods adopted, of the men of that great age. But 
it is always worth remembering that those men were mostly scholars 
and men. of intense religious feeling as well as adventurers eager both 
for material rewards and for glory. They were passionately excited 
by the new learning of the classical Renaissance as well as by its offshoot, 

the Reformation So, too, Rhodes. The man who amalgamated 

the diamond industry, who created the Chartered Company and 
dreamed of extending British influence from the Cape to Cairo . . . 
was also the man whose guiding star was Aristotle's definition of 
happiness as activity in excellence, whose pocket was never without 
his well-thumbed Marcus Aurelius, who had the whole of the classics 
specially translated for himself, and whose lasting memorials are the 
name of a great country and an educational endowment. 

Clearly, however, the Trustees would need expert advice, and 
they were singularly happy in their choice of an adviser. In 
the early summer of 1902 they invited Dr. George Parkin, as 
Organizing Secretary, to undertake the task of translating the 
great idea into a working system. Parkin, who was fifty-six, 
and had matriculated at Oxford on the same day as the Founder, 
was a Canadian cast in the prophetic mould. A non-Collegiate 
student, he had positively been elected Secretary of the Union 

1 My Political Life, vol. i, pp. 181-2. 


in his first term at Oxford, after an impassioned plea for a united 
Empire which earned him the admiring friendship of Asquith 
and Milner. Religion, and after that the Empire, were the 
dominant influences in his life. In Canada, to which he returned 
as a schoolmaster, he soon became a recognized leader in the 
Church of England, and from 1889 to 1895, first in Australasia 
and then in England, he preached imperial sentiment in general, 
and Imperial Federation in particular, on behalf of the short-lived 
Imperial Federation League, with a fiery eloquence which, as 
Buckle of The Times once said, 'shifted the mind of England'. 
He was a gifted writer and one of the most impressive public 
speakers of his day. And he possessed immense personal charm. 
Most photographs of Parkin, and the bust at Rhodes House, 
contrive to suggest a brooding melancholy, but the 'dishevelled 
gaiety', to which Wylie refers, was more familiar to his friends. 
From 1895 he had been for seven years Headmaster of Upper 
Canada College, in Toronto, and was transforming it into a 
public school in the tradition of Arnold and Thring. But he 
scarcely hesitated when he received the Trustees' invitation. 

From September to December 1902 Parkin was in Oxford, 
smoothing out, with remarkable success, the initial difficulties 
with University and College authorities. But by the following 
February the Trustees had decided to appoint an Oxford Secre- 
tary, (Sir) Francis Wylie, to relieve Parkin of the Oxford 
problems, and to assume paternal supervision of the Rhodes 
Scholars when in due course they should arrive in Oxford. It 
was a no less prescient selection than that of Parkin himself, and 
so outstanding were the services of each man in his own field 
that each has on occasion been dubbed the second founder of the 
Rhodes Scholarships. How he wrestled with the problems 
of the Scholarships in Oxford, Wylie himself has narrated in 
the following chapter with characteristic lightheartedness and 
lucidity, and a vividness of memory astounding in a man of over 
eighty. But the problems to be solved outside Oxford were even 
more formidable than those which would confront the Univer- 
sity, and now, in February 1903, Parkin was ready to begin 


solving them, and to embark upon the first of those far-ranging 
journeys which laid the foundations of the Rhodes Scholarship 
system as we know it. 

Who was to select the Scholars? How were the wishes 
intimated by the Founder to be translated into formal regulations ? 
Were candidates to be schoolboys, undergraduates or graduates? 
Must they be unmarried? Such were a few. of the interrogation 
marks to which Parkin must find the answers. And beyond them 
all loomed his central task, to commend to America and the 
Empire the Founder's vision, which was assuredly also his own, 
of Oxford as a nursery of leaders, the energizing source of Empire 
and the womb of a thousand years of peace for mankind. 

He went first to the United States. In May, after a brief 
holiday in Italy, he set off, with his wife, round the world, to 
South Africa, New Zealand, Australia, Bermuda, the West 
Indies, Newfoundland and Eastern Canada, travelling 140,000 
miles in two years, holding conferences, seeking interviews, 
forming committees and rousing enthusiasm. Nor were his 
journeys by any means always luxurious: the lengthy letters, 
usually to Hawksley, of which our early files are full, report not 
a few contretemps. 

I had some odd experiences after leaving Jamaica. I had arranged 
to cross to Cuba, but as the tourist season was over, the regular boat 
to Santiago had been taken off. There was some doubt whether I 
could cross at all, but at last I found a cattle ship sailing from Port 
Antonio to the north coast of Cuba. A stormy night on a Norwegian 
tramp vessel, with 300 loose oxen on the decks, is an experience not 
easily forgotten. After that, a banana car over a newly-constructed 
line in a tropical downpour on an intensely dark night for thirty or 
forty miles furnished an additional touch of life under new conditions. 

Yet everywhere, his biographer recalls, he was interested and 
interesting. And everywhere during these first travels and the 
many later journeys which followed them he encountered prob- 
lems which neither the Founder nor the Trustees could have 
foreseen. One obvious lacuna in the Will, indeed, Parkin disposed 
of at once. The Founder had created only two Canadian Scholar- 


ships, for Ontario and Quebec. In 1903, on Parkin's advice, the 
Trustees established Scholarships for the remaining six provinces. 
But in country after country a bewildering variety of alternative 
methods of selection nomination by University Senates, by 
Professorial Boards, by prominent public officials, even by one 
Committee for the whole of the United States were examined 
and rejected. And gradually, in his successive reports to the 
Trustees, a practicable system, homogeneous though as yet far 
from uniform, began to take shape. For a while in some consti- 
tuencies appointments were to be made by Universities in 
rotation, but in most of them special Selection Committees were 
established at once. Inevitably these prototypes were a good deal 
more official k character than the Committees of to-day: in the 
United States, for example, they consisted mainly of College 
Presidents and in Canada of the Lieutenant-Governor, the Chief 
Justice and the Chief Superintendent of Education. No doubt 
such galaxies of notabilities lent prestige to the nascent Scholar- 
ships. They may even have been held to guarantee the im- 
partiality of a selection not based upon written examinations 
though we have a glimpse of President (Teddy) Roosevelt 
warning Parkin not to include State Governors on his Com- 
mittee: 'Take my friend here, for instance', he exclaimed, 
pointing to a Governor, *if he were on the committee he would 
be thinking all the time how he could use it for the next election'. 
Nevertheless, not all the Presidents and Lieutenant-Governors 
could be relied on to know much about Oxford, or even perhaps 
always to spare sufficient time for the not unexacting task 
of investigating rival claims, and it is not surprising that 
since Parkin's day official membership has increasingly 

As to the procedure of the Committees when constituted 
their dealings with referees and testimonials and their develop- 
ment of the personal interview which is the core of the system 
all this would evolve gradually with experience accumulated in 
many different countries and co-ordinated to the best of his 
ability by the General Secretary; but the Founder's objective, aaad 


their own task, then as now, could hardly have been put to the 
Committees more succinctly than when Parkin told a Conven- 
tion of University and College Presidents in Chicago that 
provided they would select from each State the candidate most 
likely to become President of the United States, Chief Justice of 
the Supreme Court or American Ambassador to Great Britain, 
then Oxford and the Rhodes Trustees would probably be 
satisfied. Perhaps it was some lingering folk-memory of this 
aphorism which inspired an American newspaper, some while 
later, to headline its announcement of a local candidate's election 
to a Rhodes Scholarship with Is he the perfect man?' Un- 
fortunately for the Scholar-elect, who in sober truth was not 
specially qualified to set the Isis on fire, word of these discon- 
certing home-town eulogies reached Oxford before he did, and 
during his first term he was gratified, if a trifle embarrassed, by 
the number of invitations which he received from second and 
third year men in his College. It was not till some time afterwards 
that he learnt that his hosts had been charging a small fee for the 
privilege of an introduction to the perfect man. 

As to the age at which a young man from the Empire or the 
United States could most profitably be sent to Oxford, wherever 
Parkin went there was animated debate. No less an authority 
than President Eliot of Harvard was for schoolboy candidates, 
and so, somewhat surprisingly, a good many years later, was 
Dr. Montagu Rendall, who went on a world tour for the 
Trustees shortly after he retired from the Headmastership of 
Winchester in 1924. But Oxford, the Colonial Office and the 
majority opinion overseas were decisively in favour of older men. 
It was felt that they would be better qualified to stand up to the 
arduous process of acclimatization, mental and physical, and 
better fitted to get the most possible out of Oxford, and that 
with them there would be less risk than with schoolboys of the 
Scholarships (as the Founder had put it) 'withdrawing diem or 
their sympathies from the land of their adoption or birth'. 
Moreover, owing to the high standard of sixth-form work in 
the English public schools it seemed unlikely that schoolboys 


from overseas would be able to compete on equal terms with 
English freshmen. And so from the outset the regulations 
required, almost everywhere, that candidates should be aged 
between nineteen and twenty-five and should already have spent 
two years at a University in their home countries. 

The United States seems to have provided the Rhodes Scholar- 
ships with their most formidable initial problems, as well as their 
most outspoken critics. There was Andrew Carnegie, for 
example, who told Parkin that he would never induce the best 
young Americans to go to Oxford, because Oxford could not 
give them what they most wanted; which, he explained, was 
dollars. And President Lowell of Harvard, who gave it as his 
opinion that owing to their highly specialized character success 
in American athletics should probably be regarded as a dis- 
qualification for a Rhodes Scholarship. Not to speak of Henry 
James, who protested vehemently against the prospective 
desecration of Oxford by an irruption of young barbarians. 
There was the powerful counter-attraction of American com- 
merce and industry to be contended with too. To this day, 
indeed, at any conference of former American Rhodes Scholars 
some speaker is likely to complain that too large a proportion of 
the fraternity has taken to academic life, and that all too seldom 
(as I have heard one enthusiast put it) has a 'bow-legged cowboy 
from Wyoming' been elected. To which Parkin himself supplied 
one obvious answer when he pointed to the remarkable influence 
over American public opinion exercised by University Presi- 
dents, such as Eliot, Lowell or Butler and even argued that the 
Founder's desire for the man who would 'esteem the performance 
of public duties as his highest aim' would be best fulfilled in 
America by electing Rhodes Scholars whose ambition was to 
attain high academic status. This particular phrase in the Will, 
however, is calculated to give rise to perennial speculation, and 
successive General Secretaries have devoted a considerable amount 
of time to interpreting it, against, their varied contemporary 
backgrounds, to Selection Committees all over the world. 

From 1905 to 1910 Parkin's base was in England, and his home 


at Goring was constantly open to visiting Rhodes Scholars from 
Oxford. But he made frequent journeys to Canada and the 
United States, and paid a second visit to South Africa. And in 
1917 and 1919 he toured Canada and the United States, partly to 
investigate the Scholarships, but chiefly to deliver a series of 
stirring and prescient speeches on the war and Anglo-American 
relations. He received a belated knighthood in 1920, to the 
satisfaction of countless friends, ranging, it has been said, from 
Prime Ministers to professional poachers. When he retired a few 
months later, at the age of seventy-four, Wylie wrote of him 
truly that 

he brooded over the beginnings of the Scholarship system; it was his 
thought that brought it form. No other man has given so much of 
himself to its growth, or made so much of its meaning his own. 

Hitherto Parkin had organized the Scholarships overseas, and 
Wylie had long been overseeing them in Oxford. But there 
remained much of the Trustees' business which fell within the 
department of neither. The estate itself, after all, had to be 
administered. Moreover, from the outset the Trustees had 
commenced their continuing benefactions to a variety of good 
causes akin to, but distinct from, the Scholarship foundation 
itself. Indeed, as Wylie recalls, almost as soon as the terms of the 
Will were announced there had been discreet intimations from 
Oxford that if financial assistance from the Trustees should be 
forthcoming it would certainly not be rejected by the University; 
for after all, thanks to pious benefactors in the past, every Oxford 
College was able to spend a good deal more upon its under- 
graduates than it found it necessary to charge them, so that every 
Rhodes Scholar would in effect be receiving an invisible grant- 
in-aid from the College which admitted him. Although the 
Founder himself had not 'explicitly suggested benefactions to 
Oxford (and though he suggested that the University should 
develop its medical school, he made no provision to enable it to 
do so), the Trustees had recognized the undoubted force of these 


representations, and during the early years they had been making 
an interesting series of contributions for University purposes. 
Thus an annual grant towards a Lecturership in Pathology, which 
commenced in 1906, was still running in 1920, as was a sub- 
vention of the Readership in English Law, originated in 1910. 
In 1917, 1,000 was contributed to the Chair of Forestry. Again, 
in 1914 Percy Matheson had written to suggest to Lord Milner 
that the Trustees might assist in financing the Readership in 
Pharmacology, and it may be that Lord Milner found the 
solitary argument which his correspondent adduced that 
Pharmacology figured in a school not infrequently studied by 
Rhodes Scholars irresistible in itself; but it is at least possible 
that he was not uninfluenced by the facts that Percy Matheson 
was a friend and colleague at New College, and that the Trustees 
were on the look out for convenient methods of signalizing their 
sense of obligation to the University. In any event, the grant to 
this Readership too was still being paid in 1920. But these are all 
comparatively modest examples of the Trustees' early contribu- 
tions; more munificent had been their gift of 20,000 to establish 
an Oxford Professorship of Roman Dutch Law in 1919. And 
outside Oxford they had made very large benefactions to Rhodes 
University College in South Africa, and generous grants to the 
Victoria League and other organizations. The tradition thus already 
established, of assistance both to Oxford and to many other good 
causes, was to be maintained, and expanded, in the years to come. 
One early benefaction to the University I have not mentioned 
above since it came not from the Rhodes Trust but from a 
Rhodes Trustee. But the foundation of the Beit Professorship 
and Lecturership in Colonial History was so closely associated with 
the arrival of the Rhodes Scholars in Oxford, and the story of 
its origin throws such an interesting light on two men who did 
much to shape the history of the Rhodes Trust, that I must quote 
it here, as recounted by Mr. Amery in the first volume of My 
Political Life? 

My own direct connexion with the administration of the Trust only 

*p. 184. 


began in 1919. But I can claim to have made a small but useful 
contribution to its purposes from the start Not long after my return 
from South Africa I realized that when the first Rhodes Scholars 
arrived they would find practically no provision at Oxford for the 
teaching of history of the British Empire, or even anything like an 
adequate supply of books on the subject. A casual telephone message 
in June 1904 from Leverton Harris asking me to come to a small men's 
dinner and mentioning that Alfred Beit would be one of the party 
gave me my chance. I said I would cut another engagement and come 
if he would put me next to Beit, whom I had not met, but knew to 
be, not only a trustee, but deeply inspired by Rhodes's ideals. To Beit 
I launched out at once on the absurd situation the Rhodes Scholars 
would find if they thought they could learn anything, at the heart of 
the Empire, of that Empire's history. As a practical man he asked me 
what was needed to meet the deficiency. Happily I had thought it 
out and replied at once: *A professor of Colonial History at .900 a 
year; an assistant or reader at ^300; .50 a year for special books; 
another .50 for a prize essay; say .1,300 in all'. Beit reflected a 
moment and then said: *Yes, I'll do it'. It was all fixed up before we 
had finished soup. I took the next train to Oxford and All Souls and, 
with Warden Anson's help, set all the official wheels going without 
delay. Beit subsequently endowed the Chair to the tune of some 
j40,000. I have often been a sturdy beggar for good causes, but 
never secured so much for so good a cause in so short a time. 

Hitherto, while the Scholarships remained the concern of 
Parkin and Wylie, a succession of Secretaries in London had 
handled the other business of the Trustees. From 1902 to 1905 
Douglas Brodie and Charles Boyd had shared the responsibility; 
from 1905 to 1908 Boyd, whom Wylie found 'friendly, light- 
hearted and amusing', held office alone. In 1908 Mrs. Mavor 
(afterwards Lady Butterworth) became Acting Secretary and 
served with the utmost efficiency until 1916, when she was 
succeeded by T. L. Gilmour. It was not until 1919 that the first 
General Secretary was appointed to take over from Parkin the 
general administration of the Scholarships, and from Gilmour all 
the business of the London office. Henceforth all questions to be 
considered by the Trustees, whether originating in Oxford or 


elsewhere, would reach them through the General Secretary. 
For a long while this arrangement was a source of considerable 
mystification to the University. For until 1939 the General 
Secretary's office would remain in London; he was not much 
seen in Oxford, and when at the outbreak of the second world 
war, after I had taken over the Secretaryship from Lothian, we 
were evacuated to Oxford, I found few of my friends in the 
University able to distinguish between my duties and those of 
the Oxford Secretary, C. K. Allen. There is less cause for con- 
fusion now, for the General Office of the Trust has remained in 
Oxford since the war it proved a good deal more convenient, 
as well as a good deal cheaper, to maintain headquarters in 
Oxford and pay occasional visits to London and there is no 
longer an Oxford secretary, his office having been transformed 
into the Wardenship of Rhodes House. 

At first the General Secretaryship was fated to be an affair of Box 
and Cox. The first General Secretary was Lieutenant-Colonel 
( Sir) Edward Grigg, afterwards Lord Altrincham. A New Col- 
lege man, he had won the Gaisford Greek Verse prize at Oxford 
and had served with distinction on The Times and in the Grenadier 
Guards. Almost as soon as he had been appointed he was invited 
to become Military Secretary to the Prince of Wales, and accom- 
panied him first to Canada and subsequently to Australia and 
New Zealand. Fortunately for the Trustees, Geoffrey Dawson 
chanced just then to have vacated the editorship of The Times, 
and he agreed to act for the Trustees during Grigg's absence. 
Returned from his Empire tours, Grigg relieved Dawson. But 
not for long, for in 1921, becoming Private Secretary to the 
Prime Minister, Mr. Lloyd George, he resigned his office with 
the Trust, and once more Dawson took his place. Once more, 
however, tenure was to be brief. For in 1923 the death of Lord 
Northcliffe and the fall of Mr. Lloyd George's government had 
combined to reverse the situation; with some hesitation Dawson 
decided to return to the editorship of The Times (and himself 
soon afterwards became a Rhodes Trustee), and Grigg (who was 
by now National Liberal Member of Parliament for Oldham) 


was free. He became General Secretary once more, this time for 
two years, until in 1925 he was appointed Governor of Kenya. 
These somewhat bewildering interchanges might perhaps have 
impaired the smooth working of the Trust had not both Box and 
Cox been exceptionally able men, accustomed to hold similar 
views on Trust affairs. Moreover, Lord Milner, alone of the 
original Trustees, was still in office, and his strong will and 
preternaturally clear sight exercised a powerful influence on the 
Trust's policy. *On all practical problems', Mr. Amery has 
written of him, 1 'whether of finance and economics, of adminis- 
tration or war, his strength lay in that unerring grasp of essentials 
and in the consequent simplicity which is the highest expression 
of genius/ It is fitting that the Milner Hall, at the heart of 
Rhodes House, should perpetuate the memory of the Trustee 
who played a dominant part in the formative years of both the 
Scholarships and the Trust. 

And after these frequent changes at the apex, a headquarters 
staff destined to give the Trust long and faithful service would 
come into existence. Eric Millar, friendly and conscientious, had 
already become Assistant Secretary in 1921, and would remain 
till 1939, repeatedly holding the fort during Lothian's absences 
abroad. And Miss Bain and Miss Osmond, who are still serving 
the Trust, would join it in 1925 and 1928 respectively. 

1 My Political Life, vol. ii, p. 211. 



IN 1925 Philip Kerr, afterwards eleventh Marquess of Lothian, 
took over the General Secretaryship. His was to be the first 
tenure of considerable length and he could hardly have been better 
equipped for it. Like his predecessor, he was a New College man, 
who had served as Secretary to Mr. Lloyd George while Mr. Lloyd 
George was Prime Minister. After Oxford, where he took a 
First in History, he had gone to South Africa as junior member 
of Milner's famous 'Kindergarten', and had taken an active part 
in bringing about the Act of Union and later had edited the 
Round Table. Wylie wrote of him: 

The informality of his bearing, while it could not hide the fine 
breeding which underlay it, helped him to get quickly on an easy 
footing with anyone with whom he might be thrown. He was 
prepared to find anyone interesting who could tell him things he 
wanted to know; and there was scarcely any limit in the things that 
Philip Kerr wanted to know. 

He would make friends, for the Rhodes Trust and himself, all 
over the Commonwealth and, very notably, in the United States. 
He worked with astonishing speed and his many interests and 
varied contacts all enriched his service to the Trust. His most 
disconcerting characteristic, a recurrent tendency to fall suddenly 
asleep at inopportune moments, was all the more alarming since 
he was much addicted to driving powerful cars at high speeds. 
Between 1925 and 1939, when he was to become British Am- 
bassador in Washington, many large problems of reorganization 
and policy were to confront the Trust, and on all of them Lothian 
left the stamp of his luminous and friendly intelligence. When 
I succeeded him, in the summer of 1939, he told me that, so 
far as he could see, all the major problems had been solved. He 



A Trustee appointed by a codicil of the Will 
Died 1925 

Organising Secretary, 1902-1920 


Oxford Secretary, 1903-1931 

From the drawing by 

Miss F. A. de B. Footner, 1935 

Warden of Rhodes House, 1931-1952 


could not foresee the problems of die second world war and its 

In 1925 the first world war had come and gone. Its impact 
upon Oxford and the Rhodes Schokrships is recounted by 
Wylie below. It had led the Trustees to promote the Rhodes 
Estate Act of 1916, the object of which was to abolish the German 
Scholarships and create others in dieir place. As will appear from 
Wylie's account, there had for a while been many problems of 
administration and discipline to be hastily solved; but the war 
had not lastingly diverted the policy, or impaired the resources, 
of the Trust. And in 1925 only a handful of prophets or pessimists 
foresaw a second world war. The road was open for fourteen 
years of steady development. Lord Milner, last of the original 
Trustees, died that summer, and Rudyard Kipling, who had been 
appointed in 1917, resigned in protest against die appointment 
of Kerr, a Liberal and an associate of Lloyd George, as Secretary. 
By the end of the year the Board consisted of Sir Otto Beit, 
Lord Lovat, Mr. L. S. Amery, Mr. Stanley Baldwin (as he then 
was), Mr. Geoffrey Dawsoir, Sir Douglas Hogg (afterwards Lord 
Hailsham), Mr. H. A. L. Fisher and Sir Edward Peacock. By 
now the process of selection overseas had more or less assumed 
its present character. In each of the larger constituencies, the 
U.S.A., Canada, South Africa and Australia, a former Rhodes 
Scholar as Secretary was organizing the elections, doing his best 
to stimulate competition and keeping intimate contact with the 
General Secretary in England. 

Of these Dr. Frank Aydelotte (Indiana and Brasenose, 1905) 
was the first appointed, had the longest tenure (he served from 
1918 to 1952) and on the whole the most formidable problems 
to face. By 1925 College Presidents were no longer doing our 
selection for us, and Committees of the kind we know to-day- 
consisting of former Rhodes Scholars presided over by a dis- 
tinguished outsider had already come into existence. But 
Aydelotte was still working feverishly on the revolutionary 


plan by which the system of annual elections by districts of 
grouped States was to be substituted in 1930 for the old arrange- 
ments under which each State elected, or was at any rate entitled 
to elect, in two years out of three. Of this long-meditated 
'district plan', as well as of the Association of American Rhodes 
Scho bandits lively house journal the American Oxonian, which 
between them have done so much both for the Rhodes 
Scholarships and for Anglo-American relations, and of the far- 
reaching consequences and occasional contretemps of the Scholar- 
ships in the United States, Aydelotte himself gives his own too 
brief account later in this volume. I will only add here that, 
though in 1921 he became President of Swarthmore and in 1939 
Director of the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton, 
Aydelotte's tireless devotion to the Rhodes idea (and not merely 
to the American Scholarships) never flagged. Indeed, I recognize 
now in retrospect how much, during these years, the American 
Secretary was doing for the Scholarships all over the world. For 
through his varied activities as host, unofficial employment agency 
and father confessor to former Rhodes Scholars, and his illumin- 
ating book, The American Rhodes Scholarships, as well as countless 
lectures, journeys and interviews undertaken in the interests of 
the Scholarships, he was setting the pattern for all our larger 
constituencies in which former Rhodes Scholars installed as 
Secretaries, and not confining themselves to organizing elections, 
or stimulating competition, would in due course set out to build 
up an active Rhodes fraternity. In 1921 J. M. Macdonnell 
(Ontario and Balliol, 1905), later K.C. and M.P., had become 
Secretary in Canada and P. T. Lewis (South African College 
School and Balliol, 1904), later K.C. and Lieutenant-Colonel, 
in South Africa; while in the following year the indefatigable 
(Sir) John Behan (Victoria and Hertford, 1904) became 
Australian Secretary; he had obtained two Firsts at Oxford, as 
well as the Vinerian and Eldon Scholarships, and had been a 
Fellow of University College. 


There had been considerable additions to the Scholarships too 
by now. Thus for some inscrutable reason the Founder had left 
only two Scholarships to Canada, one for English-speaking 
Ontario and one for French-speaking Quebec; not, as some 
commentators naively suggested, because the existence of the six 
remaining Provinces had escaped his notice (the same commen- 
tators perhaps who for long stoutly maintained that, when he 
bequeathed a Scholarship to each of the United States he supposed 
their number to be still restricted to the original thirteen). And 
at once, in 1903, the Trustees had created six Scholarships for the 
neglected Provinces. In 1911 the Scholarship of the North-West 
Territories was divided between Alberta and Saskatchewan, 
which elected, until 1918, in alternate years. And in 1919 Mr. 
Amery, who had then just become a Trustee, and was Under 
Secretary of State for the Colonies, proposed to his fellow- 
Trustees that there should be a Scholarship for Malta: the 
Scholarship was established in 1920 (at first for election every 
third year). The Amery Street which I recognized with pleasure 
when I visited Valletta in 1950 commemorated, I believe, Mr. 
Amery's responsibility for the Maltese constitution of 1921, but, 
if the Maltese had known of his paternal relationship to their 
Rhodes Scholarship, they would, I am sure, have been no less 
anxious to commemorate him with a street. 

Then the German Scholarships. They had been created, five 
a year, in a codicil because 1 note that the German Emperor 
has made instruction in English compulsory in German schools' 
and because 'an understanding between the three great powers 
will render war impossible'. In 1916 Germany's first great on- 
slaught on Europe had been raging for two years, and the 
Trustees promoted a Private Bill which 'revoked and annulled' 
the five German Scholarships, and required that four more should 
be created in their place, for countries 'within the British Empire'. 
Advice poured in, as it always does, as to the choice of the new 
beneficiaries: there must be few countries, within or without the 
British Commonwealth, for whom somebody has not at some 
time urged the Trustees to create a Scholarship. In feet, one went 


to be shared between Alberta and Saskatchewan, both of which 
could therefore henceforth elect annually, one each to the 
Transvaal and the Orange Free State, and one jointly to Kimber- 
ley and Port Elizabeth, electing in alternate years. 

Once the Selection Committees are constituted, the process of 
selection has of course its own perennial problems. Save in the 
early days (when the special qualifying Examination referred to 
by Wylie 1 was needed to exempt Rhodes Scholars from Respon- 
sions) there has been no written examination, and the candidate 
has been judged on his University, or school, record, his testi- 
monials and, above all, on a personal interview. The success of 
Committees has depended largely on the tact and insight of its 
members at these interviews, for the conduct of which they have 
of course steadily accumulated experience. But the problems of 
policy are even more fundamental than those of procedure, and 
they are faithfully reflected in the Memoranda which the General 
Secretary has for many years been circulating at regular intervals 
to the members of every Selection Committee. It was not until 
I had been wrestling with them for some little while myself, and 
had laboriously phrased a good many of my own solutions, that 
I discovered with considerable relief, from an examination of our 
earliest files, how closely on the whole most of these solutions 
resembled those of my remoter predecessors. 

Thus the Founder had directed that his Scholars should 'not be 
merely bookworms', and that in addition to their 'literary and 
scholastic attainments', their 'fondness of, and success in, manly 
outdoor sports', their 'qualities of manhood, truth, courage, 
devotion to duty, sympathy for, and protection of, the weak, 
kindliness, unselfishness and fellowship', as well as 'moral force of 
character and of instincts to lead' should all be taken into account. 
The revolutionary character of these provisions was evident from 
the outset, for though up to a point Oxford Colleges might take 
account of qualities of character when admitting Commoners, 

1 pp. 63, 4. 


'literary and scholastic attainments' alone determined the election 
of their scholars. Yet it is beyond question that all enduring 
achievement depends upon character as well as intellect, and many 
of the greatest figures in British history, including the Founder 
and Sir Winston Churchill, would have been hopelessly un- 
qualified to win a traditional scholarship on leaving school. If, 
then, our Selection Committees were to select future Rhodeses 
and Churchills, there would evidently have to be a good deal of 
hard thinking as to the respective claims of intellect and character. 
What we have told our Committees has been, briefly and in 
effect, that a Rhodes Scholar should possess either distinguished 
character founded upon sound intellect, or distinguished intellect 
founded upon sound character. In the early days some Com- 
mittees were over-partial to the unintelligent he-man, and since 
then the balance has perhaps tilted over far, temporarily and here 
and there, towards the mere laureate of the examination haU. 
But in general Committees have displayed a remarkably shrewd 
judgment, as is evidenced both by the subsequent careers of 
Rhodes Scholars, which are discussed later in this volume, and 
by the simple fact that (although they necessarily have to face 
certain handicaps peculiar to themselves, and although an in- 
creasing proportion of them read only for post-graduate degrees) 
their record in the final Schools compares favourably with that of 
home-produced open exhibitioners, and is not much inferior to 
that of open scholars. In 1954, indeed, eleven out of forty-eight 
Rhodes candidates taking Schools obtained Firsts. 

Again, the reference in the Will to 'manly outdoor sports', 
together with the signal prowess of athletes from overseas (by 
no means all of them Rhodes Schokrs) in inter-Varsity contests, 
have contrived to breed a persistent illusion, both here and over- 
seas, that Rhodes Scholars are primarily, or even necessarily, men 
of brawn. The truth of course is that Selection Committees 
have from the first been warned to attach little importance to 
mere skill in hitting or kicking a moving ball. What they have 
been encouraged to search for has been rather c the qualities of 
character usually developed by sports' and by love of an open-air 


life; and the century at Lords, or winning try at Twickenham, 
though a welcome aftermath of some elections, has seldom, save 
in the earliest years, constituted their objective. (The Battle of 
Waterloo may have been 'won on the playing-fields of Eton' but 
in the age of Waterloo the playing-fields of Eton and of Rugby, 
a little later, in Tom Brown's day were not the scene of organ- 
ized ball games.) Yet the proportion of prominent Rhodes 
Scholar athletes who have also been industrious and distinguished 
students is remarkable; there is the experience of fifty years 
behind the observation, in the latest Memorandum to Selection 
Committees, that 'the wisdom of Mr. Rhodes has been justified 
... by the proportion of his Scholars who both work well and 
play well*. Wylie remarks, on a later page, that if the athletic 
clause of the Will had been rigidly interpreted, Jan Hofmeyr, the 
South African statesman, would probably never have been 
elected. I think that he is mistaken there, for, whatever may be 
said of Hofmeyr's 'success in manly outdoor sports', there can 
be no doubt as to his fondness for them. To the end of his life 
he was a persistent, if unskilful, cricketer; and when he came to 
dine with me, thirty years after we had last met as contem- 
poraries at Balliol, his first words were, 'We used to play in the 
same hockey team' an episode which, though the hockey team 
contained the late Dr. Joad and other British celebrities, I had for 
the time being completely forgotten. 

Or again, an observer who considers that too few Rhodes 
Scholars become Cabinet Ministers occasionally quotes the desire 
expressed by the Founder that a Scholar should 'esteem the 
performance of public duties as his highest aim'. But Mr. Rhodes 
can hardly have wished that in 1953 his Trustees should be 
promoting an influx into Oxford of sixty-eight future Cabinet 
Ministers every year. It would no doubt be inappropriate for a 
Rhodes Scholar of all people, if otherwise obviously qualified, to 
hold aloof from politics on the mere ground, so often alleged, 
that 'politics are a dirty game', and particularly inappropriate 
perhaps for a Rhodes Scholar in South Africa, where the Founder 
himself thought it his duty to pursue a political career. And there 


can be no doubt that a number of Rhodes Scholars have in fact 
entered politics from a sense of duty not only to society but to 
the Rhodes Scholarships. Nevertheless, it has to be recognized 
that in the world of to-day 'public duties' can be performed, to 
the equal or greater advantage of society, in many spheres out- 
side the walls of Parliament itself, and the Trustees have always 
advised their Selection Committees to interpret the Pounder's 
words as covering any and every activity whose aim is the 
service of others as distinct from mere individual self-advance- 

Wylie tells, in the following section, how the influx of Rhodes 
Scholars into Oxford gradually created, or at least greatly 
enlarged, the demand for advanced work and post-graduate 
degrees, but this unexpected consequence of the Foundation and 
the delicate problems which it would involve, did not fully 
develop until after the second world war. There was, however, 
another change in the University regulations which was already 
producing its effects when Lothian took office in 1925. Wylie 
recounts below 1 how soon after the first world war it came about 
that any degree at an 'approved' University overseas was accepted 
by Oxford as qualifying for 'senior standing'. The consequences 
for the Rhodes Scholarships were far-reaching. Henceforth all 
but a handful of Riodes Scholars would be able to qualify for a 
degree in two years. The third year, which had hitherto been a 
necessity for almost all of them, might henceforth for some of 
them become something like a luxury. And although, as often 
as not, it was in his third year that a Scholar gained most from 
the social life of College and University, even this would not 
justify his filling up time with work which bore no relation to 
his future career. Moreover, there were now financial considera- 
tions to be reckoned with. War, as always, had bred inflation. 
The stipend of ^300 prescribed by the Will, which had spelt 
modest affluence before the war, had begun to entail pinching 

*p. 112. 


and parsimony by 1918. Now Rhodes Scholars ought not to be 
harassed by budgetary anxieties at Oxford, nor ought they to 
find vacation travel on the Continent beyond their means; for 
many a Rhodes Scholar returning from the Continent has not 
only brought with him a new knowledge of foreign nations, but 
has been forced unexpectedly to realize that English ways are not 
so unlike his own as he had supposed, and has been surprised by 
a sudden sense that he is returning home. For all these reasons an 
increase in the Scholar's stipend had become imperative. In 1920 
a 'bonus' of 50 was added to it, and in 1925 it was permanently 
increased to 400. Here was a subsidiary motive for circum- 
spection in the grant of third years. A Memorandum of 1934 
warned Committees that it would 'no longer be, as hitherto, 
practically automatic'. But this was not to be by any means the 
end of the problem of the third year, or for that matter, alas ! of 
the stipend. 

Between 1919 and 1925, when Lothian became General 
Secretary, there had been several considerable benefactions by the 
Trustees overseas. They had given 5,000 to Victoria College, 
Alexandria, a similar sum to the Imperial College of Tropical 
Agriculture in Trinidad and 2,000 to the Kitchener Memorial 
Medical School in Khartoum; but during Lothian's fourteen years 
of office the list of their grants lengthens and assumes a somewhat 
novel character. There were one or two interesting experiments 
a grant for research on the Zimbabwe ruins, for example, and 
for the interchange of students between British and German 
Universities and the benefactions to London University (where 
since 1919 the Trustees had been contributing more than 500 
a year to the Chair of Imperial History) included a gift of ^5,000 
to the new Hall of Residence for overseas students, now well 
known as London House. But the principal beneficiaries were 
Oxford and South Africa. In South Africa the Trustees main- 
tained their generosity to Rhodes University College, and made 
numerous grants and loans to schools. Nor did they neglect the 


Bantu or the problem of race relations; thus there were grants of 
.4,000 to the Modderpoort Native School, and of ^1,000 to 
the Native College at Fort Hare, as well as contributions to the 
Institute of Race Relations, the Chair of Bantu Studies at 
Wltwatersrand University and the Bantu Mines Social Centre 
and Native Mission Schools at Johannesburg. In Oxford there 
were repeated grants, from 1925 onwards, to the 'Fund for the 
Preservation of Oxford', better known to-day as the Oxford 
Preservation Trust, as well as for a 'Tutor in Elementary Dutch', 
the 'Oxford University Boy Emigration Movement', the Union 
Society, the RadclifFe Infirmary, the School of Engineering, the 
Appointments Committee, the restoration of St. Mary's Church, 
an Indian Lecturership, the Adviser to Overseas Students and the 
Readership in International Law. And the series culminates in a 
munificent contribution of .100,000 to the Appeal launched by 
the University in 1937. 

In Oxford, too, there were experiments. One was the series of 
seven Rhodes Memorial Lectures which between 1926 and 1936 
brought seven famous men including Sir Robert Borden, the 
Canadian Prime Minister, Dr. Abraham Flexner of the Rocke- 
feller Foundation, Elie Halevy, the French historian, General 
Smuts, Professor Einstein and Professor Hubble, the (Rhodes 
Scholar) astronomer to lecture and, no less important, to reside 
for some weeks in Oxford. The lectures attracted much interest. 
Dr. Flexner's led indirectly to the establishment of the Institute 
for Advanced Study at Princeton, of which Frank Aydelotte in 
due course became Director. At General Smuts's first appearance, 
although it was in the Sheldonian and there had been an elaborate 
allotment of tickets, there was something like a free fight among 
would-be occupants of the unreserved gallery, and at his subse- 
quent lectures a small array of policemen had to be called in to 
guard the approaches to the Theatre. Professor Einstein lectured 
in German on Relativity. The venue was the Milner Hall at 
Rhodes House, for even in Oxford the number of those who 
understand both Relativity and German is not large, although 
Wylie afterwards recalled how two young ladies besought him 


to admit them on the ingenious plea that one of them knew a 
little German and the other a little mathematics. Professor 
Einstein's own verdict on the audience at his third and last lecture 
was *ils ont dormi' ; to which he added after a pause *ils en avaient 
bien le droit'. The series had certainly been distinguished; it had 
doubtless been good for Oxford, though some of the lectures had 
little relevance to the Founder and his ideas, and though in Oxford 
of all places he needed no new memorial to keep his memory 
green. The other Oxford venture of this period was the ambi- 
tious experiment of Rhodes Travelling Fellowships, intended 
to enable Oxford dons to travel in the Commonwealth or the 
United States, with the twofold object of refreshing tutors 
apprehensive of becoming stale, and of dotting about the Colleges 
Fellows who had learned to know the home countries of Rhodes 
Scholars, and would be likely to take a special interest in them. 
The Trustees had been prepared to devote up to ^3,000 a year 
to this experiment from 1926, but in the upshot only one year 
saw this much expended; opinions as to the success of the 
Fellowships were by no means unanimous and after 1933 they 
were gradually discontinued. 

But the Rhodes Trust's most important gift to Oxford was 
undoubtedly Rhodes House itself, of the genesis of which Wylie 
gives an interesting account below. 1 Completed, at a cost of 
.150,000, in 1929, it was intended to serve three main purposes: 
to do visible honour to Mr. Rhodes in the University which he 
so greatly loved; to contribute to the amenities of the University 
and City; and to provide the Oxford Secretary with a house in 
which he might conveniently entertain, and the Trustees with a 
hall in which to hold the annual Scholars' dinner desired by the 
Founder. Whatever architectural purists may tiink of Sir Herbert 
Baker's imposing Cotswold pile, there can be no doubt that it 
has abundantly fulfilled the purposes of those who built it. For 
the University it has provided Rhodes House Library, housing 
the Commonwealth and American history sections of the 
Bodleian, regularly amplified by grants from the Trustees, and 

V us f. 


maintained by them at a cost which even by 1939 had already 
risen to more than 3,000 a year. And to University and City 
alike it offers the hospitality of the Milner Hall and its other 
public rooms, used, without charge, day in and day out through- 
out the year for lectures, seminars and classes, and the meetings, 
conferences and receptions of an impressive variety of University, 
City and national societies, the nature and objects of some of 
which would no doubt have mildly astonished Mr. Rhodes. In 
the brave days before Hitler's war, when there was actually a 
retinue of eight domestics in the Warden's Lodgings, hospitality 
could be dispensed in the grand manner. And when the dark 
days came and the staff had dwindled to one, the Warden's 
Lodgings would continue to provide entertainment which, if less 
luxurious, was certainly more diverse than ever before. 

The opening of die last decade before the second world war 
was particularly memorable, for 1929 saw not only the completion 
of Rhodes House but the passing of the second Rhodes Trust Act 
and the Silver Jubilee Reunion in Oxford. The chief object of 
the Private Bill, the promotion of which the Trustees had been 
meditating for some while, was to authorize a far-reaching change 
in the distribution of the Scholarships in the United States, as 
outlined in the Will. A full account of the new 'district plan' for 
the American Scholarships, its origins and consequences, is given 
below 1 by Frank Aydelotte, who, if not its 'onlie begetter' was 
certainly the chief architect and prophet of the scheme. The Act 
did not, however, confine itself to authorizing this particular 
change. It empowered the Trustees to 

make such changes in the number distribution, tenure duration and 
administration of the Scholarships ... as will in their judgment best 
fulfil the purposes and intention of the Testator . . . 

provided always that the number of the Scholarships created by 
the Will should not be reduced, nor their allocation in South 

1 p. 197 f. 


Africa, Australia and Canada altered. Since the Act also gave the 
Trustees the widest discretion in the use of surplus capital and 
income it must certainly be regarded as a landmark in the history 
of the Trust. In one respect only did the Act differ substantially 
from the Bill originally contemplated. It had seemed to the 
Trustees that the population and the educational facilities of the 
islands of Bermuda and Jamaica, on each of which the Will had 
conferred a Scholarship, were too restricted for them to be 
expected to produce each year a Scholar of the required standard; 
and accordingly they had considered seeking power to throw open 
these two Scholarships for competition throughout the islands 
of die 'West Atlantic Zone , excluding Newfoundland. Not 
unnaturally, however, the citizens of Bermuda, on getting wind 
of what was under consideration, raised strenuous objections, and 
even dispatched a delegation to England to plead the indefeasible 
right of a beneficiary to the Scholarship allotted to it by the Will. 
The Trustees abandoned their proposals with good grace; and 
since then it has been accepted as axiomatic that, as the Act itself 
lays down, they cannot discontinue a Scholarship created by the 
Will, so long as they have funds to provide it. The Act, which 
received the Royal Assent in May, also conferred powers which 
made it possible in the following August to issue a regulation 
permitting Scholars henceforth, by way of exception, to apply 
to be allowed to postpone their third year at Oxford, or, in even 
more exceptional circumstances, to spend it at some other 
University in Great Britain or elsewhere, although not in the 
country of their own origin. 

This latter concession derived indirectly from the Reunion of 
1929. Of the Reunion festivities themselves Wylie has recounted 
his memories: 1 suffice it here to say that, with its organized 
expeditions, its reception in Westminster Hall, its garden party at 
Cliveden (featuring Bernard Shaw) and with the Prince of Wales 
as principal dinner-guest, it struck a very different note from that 
of our more domestic celebrations of 1953. Nevertheless, despite 
all these seductive distractions, Lothian and Wylie, in conclave 

1 p.l22f. 


with the principal Secretaries from overseas, found time to debate 
all the principal problems of the Scholarship system. It was a 
miniature Imperial and International Conference, and the ground 
had been prepared for it by the distribution of a questionnaire to 
former Scholars, members of Selection Committees and Univer- 
sity officials. The replies had already made it clear that 'there is 
an overwhelming majority opinion, both in the Dominions and 
the United States, that the existing system is fundamentally 
sound*. The emerging pattern of the Selection Committees, the 
methods which they had been encouraged to adopt, and the once 
hotly debated decision that, save in one or two exceptional 
constituencies, a candidate must have spent at least two years at 
a University in his own country, all had been overwhelmingly 
approved in principle by those best qualified to judge. 

The Conference debated not only these but numerous other 
problems, and among them the relative advantages of Honour 
Schools and post-graduate research. 'The great majority of 
replies' to the questionnaire had held 'that Rhodes Scholars ought 
to continue to take the undergraduate course at Oxford', roundly 
asserting both that 'it is the best and most characteristic teaching 
which Oxford offers' and that 'the importance of higher degrees 
and research work as a method of education is largely over- 
estimated'. The conclave at Rhodes House no doubt accepted 
these categorical pronouncements, which, indeed, it would have 
been difficult to dispute. Nevertheless, though true as far as they 
went, they were not the whole of the truth, and in his subsequent 
Memorandum to Selection Committees Lothian made it clear 
that it must be expected that a growing proportion of the ablest 
men would not compete for Rhodes Scholarships unless adequate 
facilities for post-graduate study were developed at Oxford. 
Seven years later, in 1936, when recommending the Trustees to 
make their generous contribution of .100,000 to the projected 
University Appeal, he summarized the other aspect of the 

No University can keep in the first rank unless a considerable 
proportion of its leading figures are actively engaged in extending the 


limits of human knowledge rather than in imparting to successive 
generations of students the body of learning which they themselves 
have inherited from their predecessors. 

Oxford, he warned the Trustees, was in danger of losing its 
reputation: at its recent Tercentenary Harvard had disconcert- 
ingly awarded nine honorary degrees to Cambridge men and 
only one to an Oxonian. In making their gift of .100,000 the 
Trustees expressed the wish that it should be used to support 
research into Social Studies with special reference to 'the problems 
of modern government in the British Commonwealth and the 
American Republic'. Had not the Founder chosen Oxford 
because he regarded the study of Greek culture and Roman Law 
as invaluable for young men who were likely to be called upon 
to practise the art of government? 

The truth is that even in 1930, the year of the Conference, 
Oxford was not altogether the Oxford which the Founder knew. 
For in the nineteenth century Oxford and Cambridge, as distinct 
from the 'red-brick' Universities, were still the training-grounds 
of a ruling class, and they still concentrated upon teaching their 
alumni to understand and to be, rather than to investigate and to 
know. Of Liter ae Humaniores it was said that, because he had 
been trained to understand, a man who had taken a First in Greats 
was qualified to do anything more efficiently than the less 
fortunate from sweeping a crossing to serving as Prime Minister. 
And in varying degrees the same claim was judged to hold good 
for every Oxford discipline. And therewith die whole atmos- 
phere of the University, and in particular of the Colleges, drawing 
preponderantly upon the privileged public schools with their 
traditional emphasis upon character-training, predisposed Oxford 
men to be to be men of a type, perhaps too easily recognizable 
but which Mr. Rhodes evidently thought to be pre-eminently 
qualified for public service. In the Founder's day the clamant 
demand for knowledge as such, the paramount emphasis upon 
research as the primary duty of a University, was virtually 
unknown. Mr. Rhodes pictured his Scholars drinking deep of 
the humanities and rubbing shoulders with their coevals in the 


College common-rooms and quadrangles rather than as enlarging 
the sum of human knowledge over a laboratory retort. Indeed, 
he explicitly excluded Edinburgh from his benefaction, despite 
the 'excellent medical school* to which he referred in his Will, 
on the ground that it possessed no 'residential system'. But by 
1936 Oxford had become very conscious of the growing demand 
for knowledge, and was uneasily aware that here was a field in 
which its own character and constitution afforded no special 
advantages, perhaps even imposed some handicaps, a field in 
which it would have to compete at least upon level terms with 
the red-brick Universities. To-day, in the atom age, the fervour 
for research has increased and is still, all over the world, in- 
creasing. And this, with the economic changes thanks to which 
Oxford draws upon much wider social strata than in the past, has 
made the University yet more unlike the University of the Will. 
Yet Oxford has assimilated many revolutions, religious, political, 
social and economic, in her long day and has nevertheless con- 
trived to remain uniquely herself. And I do not doubt that as, 
I hope, the rest of this story will make clear if Mr. Rhodes 
could have visited his University, whether in 1936 or, indeed, in 
1955, he would have recognized that, despite all the changes of 
emphasis and activity, the University which he loved remained 
essentially unaltered and still the best of all training-grounds for 
his Scholars. 

This problem of research was closely akin to an issue which, 
though not raised at the Reunion Conference, had been discussed 
at length in a Memorandum to Selection Committees two years 
earlier. An increasing tendency was becoming apparent among 
Rhodes Scholars from the Commonwealth, it was pointed out, 
'to study the sciences rather than the arts', and it was doubtful, 
wrote Lothian in 1927, whether 'this is an advantage from the 
point of view of Mr. Rhodes's larger ideals'; 

the Founder after all had selected the University of Oxford largely 
because he believed that the type of education given there, with its 
outlook on the civilization of Greece and Rome, its interest in philo- 
sophy, history, law and political science, would develop in Hs Scholars 


those aptitudes which would specially assist them in the discharge of 
public duties in after life. The Trustees do not wish to underrate in 
the slightest degree the value of a scientific education at Oxford or 
elsewhere. But they feel that the Rhodes Scholars who take those 
Schools for which the University of Oxford has been most justly 
famed in the past are likely to gain most from their Scholarship and 
that this consideration might usefully be borne in mind by Selection 

They were wise words, and although at the time they may have 
seemed faintly reminiscent of King Canute's advisers, the tide 
has in fact turned since then, as the following figures will show: 


Proportion studying Proportion studying 

Humanities Sciences 

Before first world war . 87-8 12-2 
After first world war to 

1925 inclusive . 85*3 14-7 

1954 .... 84 16 


Proportion studying Proportion studying 

Humanities Sciences 

Before first world war . 45-8 54-2 
After first world war to 

1925 inclusive . 31*9 68-1 

1954 .... 65 35 

No doubt the remarkable change evidenced in these figures has 
been partly due to the development since 1925 of scientific 
studies in the Universities of the Commonwealth. 



IN 1939, when I succeeded Lothian as General Secretary, there 
seemed to be the best of grounds for his belief that all the 
major problems of the Rhodes Trust had been solved. Its capital 
resources, to which there had recently been two considerable 
accretions, were more than adequate. Its selection procedure was 
working smoothly and with general acceptance, and with the 
revival of German Scholarships in 1929, two a year this time, 
and the award in 1933 of a Scholarship, every third year, to East 
Africa, and the transformation of the Kimberley-Port Elizabeth 
Scholarship in South Africa into an election, in alternate years, in 
the Eastern Province, the Scholarship-pattern might be con- 
sidered to have become definitive. 1931, it is true, had seen 
the much lamented departure of the Wylies from Rhodes 
House to maintain, however, for many years to come the 
closest touch with Rhodes Scholars all over the world, thanks to 
their constant pilgrimages to Boars Hill and the annual birthday 
postcard which Wylie never failed to dispatch to each of them. 
But it had soon become apparent that in their successors the 
Trustees had for a second time been vouchsafed the near-miracle 
of Warden and wife each superlatively qualified for what is, 
more than any other post in Oxford, a twofold responsibility. 
In the world of the Rhodes Trust it certainly seemed that we 
could count on fair weather if only the greater world without 

escaped a hurricane. 

* * * 

We were not long left in suspense as to the hurricane. The 
General Office was then in Waterloo Place, at the bottom of 
Lower Regent Street, and Lothian used to claim that his desk 
there, from which he could see both Big Ben and the National 
Gallery, was the centre of the Empire. It was not until towards 

D 33 


the end of July that I found myself seated at it. One of its drawers 
contained plans for evacuation in the event of war. By the first 
week in September we had acted on them, and from then until 
January 1947 we were accommodated, with a reduced staff, in 
exiguous but convenient quarters at Rhodes House. The General 
Office has not returned to London. The eighteenth-century house 
in Beaumont Street which houses it now, midway between 
Balliol and Worcester, provides more space at much less cost; 
and the Trust after all is more concerned with Oxford than with 

During the first two years of war the Trustees met nearly 
twice as frequently as usual, with agenda more often than not 
twice the customary length. There was an infinity of problems, 
large and small, to be resolved. As to the impact of the war on 
the Scholarships themselves Allen has more to say below. 1 Suffice 
it here to say that elections in the U.S.A. ceased at once, while 
the Commonwealth constituencies continued in 1939 and 1940 
to elect men who, had peace opportunely been restored, might 
have come into residence in 1940 and 1941, but, like the Scholars 
from the U.S.A. who should have come up in 1939, were per- 
mitted to hold their Scholarships in suspense until such time as 
Providence should choose to make resumption possible. During 
the central years of the war the only two constituencies continuing 
to elect were Bermuda and Malta, whose triennial Scholarship 
was rendered annual in 1942, in recognition of its wartime ordeal 
and gallantry. When peace returned, a substantial proportion of 
the holders of suspended Scholarships flocked to Oxford from 
barracks and battlefields in every continent. This time ex- 
servicemen were permitted to marry without forfeiting their 
Scholarships. Later in this volume Allen raises a corner of the 
curtain on the memorable saga of their wives and children in 
Oxford. As some compensation for the years that the locusts 
had eaten there were double elections for 1946 in the Common- 
wealth, and an increase of fifty per cent for two successive years, 
1947 and 1948, in the United States. In the peak year, 1948, 

i p. 165 f. 


there were no less than 220 Rhodes Scholars in residence. It all 
sounds simple enough in retrospect; it did not always seem so 
simple at the time. 

The German Rhodes Scholarships, revived in 1929, had in- 
conspicuously and inevitably expired ten years later. During 
their second incarnation, as in their first, they had proved, as 
Allen recounts below, most successful. After Hitler's accession 
to power there had been some natural anxiety as to the possibility 
of political interference with the Committee in Berlin, which 
had replaced the Kaiser, appointed sole selector of Rhodes 
Scholars under the Will. But, thanks to the courageous indepen- 
dence of the Rhodes Scholars who constituted the Committee 
and the influence of its venerable Chairman, Dr. Schmidt-Ott 
(who in the earlier days had advised the Kaiser as to his selections), 
die Committee remained almost the only non-Nazified organiza- 
tion in Germany and continued to elect on merit alone. No Act 
of Parliament was needed this time to bring the German Scholar- 
ships to an end, as it had been to revoke the German codicil of 
the Will in 1916, for the present Scholarships had been created 
under the powers conferred by the Act of 1929. And as early as 
the January of 1940 the Trustees were considering transferring 
the two lapsed Scholarships to India. It was obvious that the 
award of two Scholarships to a sub-continent the population of 
which was about 390,000,000 (while, let us say, Canada with a 
population, then, of 11,506,000 had ten) would be grotesquely 
disproportionate. But the capacity of Oxford to absorb Rhodes 
Scholars, like the finances of the Rhodes Trust, was not unlimited, 
and our advisers were agreed that the symbolic gesture of bringing 
India within the Rhodes family would be widely appreciated there. 
In March 1940 it was announced that the two Indian Scholarships 
would be established at the conclusion of the war. There was 
thus plenty of time for die complicated task of adapting our 
traditional election procedure to the great distances, and com- 
munal problems, of this vast new constituency. I think we may 
say that with the assistance of a number of expert advisers, and 
particularly of Sir Maurice Gwyer, who was then Chief Justice 


of India and accepted the Chairmanship of our first Selection 
Committee, we grappled successfully with our problems, resisting 
the temptation, always powerful in a new constituency, to 
overweight our Committee with ex offido members. In 1949, 
after the dichotomy of India, the two Scholarships had to be re- 
allotted, one for India and one for Pakistan, and the problems 
which had already faced us in Delhi were reproduced in Lahore. 
The new constituencies have akeady sent some distinguished 
representatives to Oxford, including an Indian President of the 


# # # 

The first world war had in no way modified the pattern of the 
Trustees' philanthropy; their grants neither increased nor altered 
in character. But during the second war, with the Scholarships 
first halved and then virtually suspended altogether, the Trust 
was saving considerable sums and its grants were both noticeably 
increased and directed to objects appropriate to the crisis. One of 
the main channels into which they flowed suggested itself readily 
enough. Troops from the Dominions, and later from the United 
States, poured into Great Britain, and both here and behind the 
battle-fronts a variety of voluntary organizations ministered 
busily to their welfare. To the chief of these, the Church Army, 
the Salvation Army, the Y.M.C.A. and the YW.C.A. (as well as 
to certain subsidiary agencies), the Trustees gave generously 
during the war years. Another objective of the Trustees' war- 
time generosity was the promotion of popular education in 
Empire history and Empire affairs. For during the years of 
cynicism before the war the Empire had fallen into disrepute; 
any strictures upon its record were regarded as impartial criticism, 
while anything said in its favour was dismissed as old-fashioned 
propaganda. And so such few organizations as had interested 
themselves at all in imperial education had tended to take the lines 
of least resistance, providing the narrowly factual (and usually 
commercial) information to which nobody was likely to take 
exception, but which would certainly open up no new horizons. 
After the outbreak of war, and particularly in 1940, when the 


British Empire manifestly stood alone in defence of civilization, 
certain organizations had begun to experiment cautiously with 
education in imperial history and affairs, but they were working 
under severe restrictions, often in ignorance of each other's plans 
and with much overlapping of effort. And so for a while at first, 
besides making more ambitious plans possible, the Rhodes Trust 
found itself serving involuntarily as a sort of unofficial clearing- 
house, and providing unofficial organizations, and even govern- 
ment departments, with information as to what other unofficial 
organizations and other government departments were doing or 
planning. And in the upshot the admirable series of lectures for 
schools organized, during and after the war, by the Imperial 
Institute, and the lectures and libraries provided for the troops by 
the Y.M.C.A., as well as some useful projects undertaken by the 
Y.W.C.A. and the National Association of Girls' Clubs, all owed 
a good deal to the generosity, and something to the collaboration, 
of the Rhodes Trust. 

And meanwhile the stream of the Trustees' more general 
benefactions continued to flow. Among them was the first 
important grant to India, a generous gift to Delhi University. It 
is interesting, too, to recall that in 1941 the Trustees purchased 
two seventeenth-century Flemish tapestry panels, representing 
Europe and America, companions, in a set of four, to two which 
the Founder himself had left in Groote Schuur, the Cape Town 
residence of the Prime Minister of South Africa. In due course 
the tapestries were presented to Field-Marshal Smuts, who was 
then Prime Minister of the Union, in recognition of the services 
rendered by himself and the people of South Africa during the 
war, and were eventually hung in 'Libertas', the Premier's official 

residence in Pretoria. 

# * # 

It was the early war years, too, which saw the origins of an 
eminently unwarlike project, the Trustees' collection of portraits 
which has already added greatly to the beauty and interest of 
Rhodes House, and will one day, I hope, become one of the 
sights of Oxford. The original intention was to build up gradu- 


ally a collection of portraits of persons of national importance, 
closely associated with the work of the Trust. For an imperial 
portrait gallery would be eminently appropriate to Rhodes 
House as a centre of imperial studies; moreover, the Trustees 
far-sightedly agreed at the outset that their collection should aim 
at artistic distinction as well as historical interest. And here it 
must be said, with all due respect, that Oxford itself has set them, 
over the centuries, some cautionary examples of what to avoid. 
For although one or two Colleges, and notably Christ Church, 
possibly because they have always possessed a considerable num- 
ber of wealthy alumni, have gradually, if not altogether inten- 
tionally, accumulated a gallery of real artistic importance, con- 
taining examples of most of the English masters, too many, when 
it became desirable to commemorate a Head of their House, 
would seem to have been chiefly concerned to obtain a tolerable 
portrait cheaply; with the inevitable result that too often when 
the Notable was no more his portrait would speedily be bustled 
away into some dark corridor or remoter lecture-room. A 
famous foreign connoisseur, it is said, was once conducted round 
a certain College hall, and examined the lines of portraits with 
interest but without audible comment, until at length, pressed 
for a verdict, he replied tersely, 'Zese pictures are large, but zey 
are not goot'. It was resolved at the outset that portraits for the 
Rhodes House collection should, if possible, be commissioned 
from the artists likeliest to be regarded by posterity as the Rey- 
nolds, Gainsboroughs and Lawrences of their day. I say 'if 
possible', for, as anyone who has had the gruelling experience of 
consulting art experts on the relative merits of artists, or for that 
matter on any other aspect of art, will be only too well aware, 
no two art experts ever agree. 

Some years later the basis of the collection was somewhat 
widened, and for a curious reason. "When Rhodes House was 
built, the name of Kingsley Fairbridge, the eponymous founder 
of the Fairbridge Farm Schools, was inscribed, not very con- 
spicuously, on a panel beneath the war memorial in the Rotunda, 
and there it had remained for more than twenty years, without 


an explanatory legend and in solitary state. No precise principle 
upon which future names were to be added to it had been 
established, though it was generally assumed that the commem- 
oration of a Rhodes Scholar beneath the dome inscribed with 
the Founder's favourite quotation from Aristotle must at least 
imply that he had conspicuously lived up to Mr. Rhodes's ideals 
of character. A few years later the home-town newspaper of a 
deceased Rhodes Scholar, who had held minor office in a provin- 
cial administration, took it upon itself to announce that his name 
would doubtless soon be inscribed in the Rotunda upon 'the 
Rhodes Honour Boards'. This unexpected suggestion abruptly 
posed a wider issue, which the Trustees of the day did not feel 
prepared to decide, and they contented themselves with dexter- 
ously postponing it by prescribing that no Scholar's name should 
be considered for inscription for at least five years after his death. 
But well before the close period for the provincial Minister was 
due to expire, some little while before the war, his backers 
renewed their offensive with an urgent inquiry as to the present 
prospect of his name's appearing upon the 'Honour Board'. 
Whereupon the Trustees promptly and prudently decided to 
extend die close period to ten years. For the problems of ad- 
mission to a potential Valhalla at Rhodes House would clearly 
be insoluble. To select the names of those who were morally 
outstanding, or even had 'made an original contribution to the 
life of their time', would be invidious and impracticable. And 
eventually, after the war was over, it was decided to substitute 
for the inscription in the Rotunda a posthumous portrait of 
Kingsley Fairbridge, by A. K. Lawrence, R.A., which at present 
hangs alone in the Jameson room. And thenceforth from time 
to time portraits of former Rhodes Scholars have been, and will 
be, added to the Rhodes House collection, the Trustees' intention 
being that their subjects should, broadly speaking, have pre- 
selected themselves by the achievement of some signal honour 
or conspicuous office. 

Since mid-1954 the verdict of all who remembered the austerity 
of the Milner Hall with empty walls has been that the portraits 


with, which it is now lined have brought it not only colour but 
therewith warmth and life. And such was undoubtedly the 
expectation of the architect, 'who had intended the Hall for 
pictures. But this aesthetic advance was effected despite the 
experts. For it was on aesthetic as well as moral grounds that 
there had at first been doubts as to whether it would not be more 
proper to leave James Gunn's large posthumous portrait of the 
Founder solitarily dominating the Hall. In the upshot three justly 
celebrated art critics were consulted, and all of them (although, 
as might perhaps have been expected, for contradictory reasons) 
pronounced that the Milner Hall was not suited for pictures. 
Nobody to-day, I believe, would wish for a return to the bare 
walls, or doubt that the Founder would have welcomed the 
opportunity of gazing down from the dais of his Hall at a select 
band of his Scholars and Trustees. 

* * * 

The finances of the Trust naturally benefited from the war 
with the years of suspended Scholarships, and its increased 
income was particularly welcome in the three years from 1947 
to 1950 when there were so many Scholars in residence. More- 
over, as soon as the war, though not, alas ! the wartime inflation, 
was over it became evident that even the most parsimonious 
Rhodes Scholar and not all Rhodes Scholars are parsimonious 
could scarcely be expected to 'get by' on ^400. The Founder 
himself was on record as having expressed the wish that his 
Scholars should not be required to 'scrape'; the conclusion was 
inescapable, and in 1946 ^100 was added to the normal stipend. 
At first, in the never very confident hope that the tide of rising 
prices might yet recede, our Scholarship Memoranda continued 
to announce the stipend as ^400, with a 'special allowance' of 
^100, and though in 1951 we were announcing ^500 as the 
official figure, we still added the cautionary words 'at present'. 
As it proved, they were justified; not, as we had tried, not very 
successfully, to hope, because it proved possible to return to the 
400 level, but because in 1954, with wages and prices still 
chasing each other up a slowly mounting spiral, a further ascent, 


to ^600, had become necessary. This last ascensus Averno, if the 
phrase is permissible, was preceded by the accumulation of much 
budgetary evidence, not only from the Warden of Rhodes 
House, but from most of the overseas Secretaries. It showed, as 
might have been expected, that the economic standards, and 
requirements, of our Scholars varied considerably, and that 
sometimes it was those who seemed to us most comfortably off 
who were most conscious of the need of an increase. But that 
there were numerous cases of hardship there was no doubt; and, 
what perhaps was worse, Rhodes Scholars were beginning to 
think of devoting their vacations to 'gainful employment* a 
disastrous negation of the Oxford system, of which one of the 
most valuable traditions is the long period of vacation during 
which the student depends upon his own unbuttressed industry 
and his own intellectual strategy. 

It was, however, by no means only the wartime suspension of 
Scholarships which had swollen the financial resources of the 
Trust. The skilled devotion of Sir Edward Peacock and his 
colleagues on the Trustees' financial committee first Sir Sothern 
Holland and after 1949 Sir George Abell after nursing the 
exchequer triumphantly through the years of storm had taken 
full advantage of calmer waters. Between 1939 and 1949 the 
Trust's assets increased by almost exactly a million pounds, 
without which the post-war increases in Scholars' stipends would 
have presented a much more formidable problem. 
* * * 

Before the end of the war it had become obvious that for the 
third time the Trust would have to submit a Private Bill to 
Parliament. Unlike the Acts of 1919 and 1926 it would not be 
concerned with the Scholarships themselves. For the time had 
come to grapple with a problem of a kind which, I suspect, the 
intricacies of the law being what they are, sooner or later con- 
fronts most great Trusts. Serious doubts had arisen whether 
quite a number of the activities which the Rhodes Trust had been 
carrying on with general approbation from the first were in fact 


within the letter of the law. Strictly speaking and how else, in 
such matters, is it safe to speak was it entitled to hold land as 
an investment? Or to make charitable grants outside Britain? 
Or to other charitable organizations? To all these fundamental 
questions the legal experts could only reply with a doubtful shake 
of the head. True, their predecessors had approved these activi- 
ties, and had even drawn up deeds empowering the Trustees of 
their day to conduct them, so that at first it was difficult to avoid 
the disquieting reflection that whatever Act was now framed, 
some fatal technical flaw in it might well be discovered by a later 
generation of lawyers. Nevertheless, there was clearly now no 
choice but to remove all doubts in our own day, and leave our 
successors to look after themselves. 

But whatever doubts might be inspired by the occasional 
ambiguities of the law, there could be none as to the unfailing 
dexterity and consideration with which our legal advisers now 
threaded their way through preliminary consultations with the 
Attorney-General, the Charity Commissioners, the Ministry of 
Education and the Treasury Solicitor, and framed a Bill which in 
due course was enacted by the King's most Excellent Majesty, by 
and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and 
Temporal and Commons, as the Rhodes Trust Act, 1946. 
Besides satisfactorily setting our major doubts at rest, this measure 
is memorable as having for the first time constituted the Trustees 
a 'body corporate with perpetual succession'. As I glance through 
its fourteen mostly quite intelligible clauses to-day I find it 
difficult to believe that it will give our successors much further 


* * * 

Sir Francis Wylie's eightieth birthday, timed with character- 
istic dexterity, fell exactly two months after the end of the war 
with Japan. He was still negotiating the exacting slopes of Boars 
Hill on a bicycle and still, needless to say, dispatching his annual 
birthday postcard to every Rhodes Scholar of his reign. Rhodes 
Scholars all over the world planned a deluge of postcards, letters 
and telegrams for the occasion. After considering an oil portrait 


(to supplement the drawing already at Rhodes House), the 
Trustees resolved to commemorate both the eightieth birthday 
and the outstanding services of the Wylies to the Rhodes Scholar- 
ships and Oxford by founding a Wylie Prize in the University, 
in the still somewhat neglected field of American or imperial 
studies, Wylie received the suggestion with characteristic 
modesty: 'the idea', he wrote, 'of having my name associated 
with anything permanent, and in Oxford, does violence' to a 
modesty which is really not mock'. The University's formal 
decree passed Congregation within a week of Wylie's birthday. 

The oil portrait, to anticipate somewhat, was eventually 
painted a few years later by Mr. Edward Halliday, and will be 
found in the Miner Hall. We need not have feared, in 1945, 
that the sittings might overtax Wylie's strength. In 1952 he spent 
two-and-a-half hours of continuous mental concentration in the 
Rhodes Trust office, discussing his contribution to this volume, 
and repeatedly recalling in vivid detail incidents and conversa- 
tions of forty or fifty years ago. He had only just recovered from 
serious indisposition, and I had feared that he might overture 
himself, but it seemed to me that at the end of our labours he 
was noticeably fresher than I. He died peacefully in his sleep, on 
October 29th that year, full of years and honour, and assuredly 
there were many to 'rise up and call him blessed'. 

Before the end of the war the Board of Trustees had changed 
considerably. Lord Hailsham resigned in 1929 and Lord Lovat 
died in 1933 . The Warden of New College was killed in a street 
accident in April 1940, a grievous loss to the Trust. In November 
of that year Dean Lowe of Christ Church (Ontario, 1922), the 
first Rhodes Scholar to become Head of a House, and the 
Treasurer of Christ Church, Captain G. T. Hutchinson, a friend 
of the Rhodes family, were elected Trustees, and in 1941 Lord 
Hailey, who after completing a memorable administrative career 
in India had embarked upon another as a leading authority upon 
Africa and its problems. Geoffrey Dawson died in 1944, still in 
the editorial chair of The Times. 



BY 1947 the war was well over and as far as the Rhodes Trust 
was concerned even the problems of its immediate aftermath 
were beginning to pass into history. There were still plenty of 
husbands and fathers among the Rhodes Scholars in Oxford, for, 
unlike their predecessors of the Kaiser's war, they had been 
permitted to marry, and, as Allen relates, there .were plenty of 
wives and children also. But the selection machinery was running 
smoothly once more, and this was the last year of the abnormally 
large post-war elections. I was free to pay, with my wife, my 
first, and most belated, visit as General Secretary to the United 
States and Canada. Of the medley of impressions, and lessons, 
of this exhilarating experience, one of the most significant was of 
the vitality and value of the Association of American Rhodes 
Scholars, of which we were very conscious during the three-day 
Reunion of more than four hundred former Scholars and their 
wives at Princeton in June. True, the meticulous preliminary 
staff-work was Frank Aydelotte's (and it was characteristic, we 
felt, of his readiness to pull any string on behalf of any Rhodes 
Scholar anywhere and at any time that he should not only have 
provided special windscreen 'stickers' for the cars of Reunion 
guests, but should have privately encouraged the local police to 
permit those displaying them to break the law with impunity). 
It is true, too, that Frank Aydelotte was the original begetter of 
the Association, which is responsible for the Eastman Professor- 
ship at Oxford, collected a hundred thousand dollars for the 
Oxford appeal and maintains the quarterly American Oxonian, 
that lively house journal which has been so consistently fortunate 
in its editors. But what the Association had meant to the Ameri- 
can Rhodes Scholarships and by inference what an Association 



might mean in other constituencies became abundantly apparent 
during the gathering at Princeton, and particularly during its 
'business sessions'. During one of these a small but energetic 
minority criticized the 'District Plan' for letting in too many 
'smooth young gentlemen from California and New England' 
and, apparently as a corollary of this, that too many Rhodes 
Scholars become professors, and too few of them business 

In fact, I believe, virtually nobody wished, or wishes, to return 
to election by States, though there are certainly some who would 
maintain that Selection Committees are apt to pay too much 
respect to academic records and not enough to character. Here, 
of course, we touch upon the fundamental tension inevitably 
inherent in our elections, and no Committee, I suppose, would 
claim to have succeeded in holding its scales completely and 
permanently even. But in general what impressed me was the 
zest and friendliness of the debate, and the general interest evinced 
in it, together with the fact that the loudest applause of the session 
was reserved for the concluding declaration, from one of the 
protagonists, that the predominant sentiment of all was gratitude 
to the Rhodes Trust; 'there is hardly a day, and certainly never a 
week, when we do not feel a conscious gratitude'. 

Henceforth I should certainly only have myself to blame if I 
did not realize how much an Association can do, in any consti- 
tuency, to keep former Scholars in contact not only with each 
other, but, to its lasting advantage, with the contemporary 
Scholarship system. At that time there was an active Association 
in Australia, but nowhere else outside America. Since then, 
however, I am glad to say the example has been followed 
elsewhere, and I hope that before long there will be no Rhodes 
Scholars without their Association save perhaps in India and 
Pakistan, where small numbers and great distances at present 
make a formidable obstacle to collaboration. A Canadian 
Association, for which Roland Michener's quietly efficient 
Secretaryship had steadily prepared the way, was launched 
during the first national Reunion of Canadian Rhodes Scholars, 


which my wife and I were fortunately able to attend, in Montreal 
in June, 1951. South Africa followed suit in 1952. For some 
years our redoubtable Secretary, Bram Gie, with assistance from 
a handful of enthusiastic colleagues, had been functioning as a 
small-scale Association in himself; but the time had come for 
expansion, and the Association was duly born at the Wanderers' 
Club, Johannesburg, in the presence of a company which by 
good fortune included the Williamses he was then Warden- 
elect on the penultimate lap of their initiatory world tour. In 
Canada and South Africa the Associations already issue an annual 
News Letter. 

All the larger constituencies now had their Associations, and, 
at a distance at any rate, it could be plausibly argued that none 
of the smaller could be expected to support one. Nevertheless, 
when my wife and I visited Malta in 1950 we could not help 
realizing that all the necessary moral and material ingredients 
were forthcoming in the George Cross island; and in 1953 a 
Maltese Association was founded, with Donald Sultana (Malta 
and St. John's, 1946) as Secretary. Since then an Association 
has been established in Bermuda, and there are more in the 

This is a process of the greatest significance. For at this stage 
in the history of the Scholarships a Scholar-elect should surely 
feel, not merely that he has been lucky enough to win a bursary 
which will take him to Oxford, but that he has entered upon 
lifelong membership of a world-wide brotherhood. An Associa- 
tion which will probably hold a social function to bid him, and 
his sailing-party, farewell when he leaves for Oxford, and some 
of whose members are likely to greet him on his return, and to 
interest themselves in his career can powerfully further this 
sense of fraternity. But in order to maintain a viable Rhodes 
community not only within each constituency but throughout 
the world even more than this is needed. A good deal towards 
this end we have already accomplished, thanks to the two Oxford 
Reunions, the Warden's sprightly and informative annual 
Christmas Letter, and up to a point, by the periodical journeys 


overseas of successive officials of die Trust and of the Trustees 
themselves. The American Oxonian, too, has of late deliberately 
published a certain amount of news from other constituencies. 
But the time may come when the need will be felt of a periodical, 
and conceivably an Association, to do throughout the world 
what is already being done for the individual constituencies. 
Meanwhile, I hope that the issue of this memorial volume to 
every Rhodes Scholar will make its own contribution towards 
the same end. 

After the war, as was natural, the benefactions of the Trustees 
outside the Scholarships resumed a somewhat greater diversity. 
Not so many grants as in the early years were made in Oxford, 
though the services which Rliodes House and its Library were 
rendering to the University in themselves already represented a 
very substantial annual expenditure. But 1947 saw the payment 
of a gift of ^5,000, promised before the war, towards the cost 
of the new Imperial Forestry Institute in South Parks Road. 
Very occasionally, and for special reasons, a grant would be made 
outside the periphery of the Rhodes domain itself, as when the 
Trustees contributed for five years towards the cost of establishing 
a library at the Gordon Memorial College, Khartoum. 1 (It is 
interesting to recall that the Founder had a profound admiration 
for Gordon, whom he encountered in Basutoland in 1 882. When 
news reached him of Gordon's death in Khartoum he is recorded 
to have exclaimed repeatedly, *I am sorry I was not with him ! 
I am sorry I was not with him !') Another benefaction of a 
somewhat exceptional character was the setting up of a small 
fund, to be administered by the Colonial Office, for the benefit 
of students from the British Colonies and there were plenty of 
them pursuing their higher education in Great Britain, who 
found themselves in financial difficulties, and for whom no 
assistance from other sources was available. But, in fact, all the 

1 Shortly after this grant was made (although not as a result of it !) Lewis Wilcher 
(South Australia and Balliol, 1930), a son-in-law of Sir Francis and Lady WyKe, was 
appointed Principal of the College. 


Trustees* grants, I hope, were exceptional, in the sense that they 
were designed to meet the unusual need of unusually deserving 
institutions, causes or individuals. And all in their several man- 
ners served to promote the basic twin objectives of the Founder, 
the welfare of the members of the British Commonwealth (and 
incidentally the fostering of the qualities which he desired his 
Scholars to display) and good relations between the Common- 
wealth and the United States. 

A considerable proportion of the Trustees' grants naturally 
goes to South Africa, the birthplace of the Trust, and during this 
period they renewed their conspicuous generosity to Rhodes 
University, at a time when it found itself in urgent need of funds. 
Once more, too, a good deal was done for native education and 
welfare, and a number of grants or loans were made to the 
independent Church schools, whose tradition derives from the 
English public schools and whose ethos and vitality must impress 
any visitor, as it certainly impressed my wife and me during our 
visit to South Africa in 1948. 

In the course of this tour we encountered from time to time 
persons who remembered Mr. Rhodes, and sometimes they had 
vivid anecdotes to recount of him. Hitherto no systematic 
collection of such informal reminiscences of the Founder had 
been attempted, and as soon as we returned to England it was 
arranged that John Garmany (Rhodesia and Queen's, 1948), a 
young Rhodes Scholar accustomed to historical research, should 
tour Rhodesia and the Union to tap all the potential sources of 
information known to us. For our present purposes the eleventh 
hour certainly seemed to have struck, but in due course Garmany's 
peregrinations yielded a surprisingly stout file of Rhodesiana, 
some of which should provide a future biographer with revealing 
glimpses of the Founder's character and idiosyncracies. And since 
then investigation has continued. Many survivors with tales to 
tell have been discovered in Great Britain. And in the Union 
itself further investigations by two indefatigable admirers of the 
Founder, Mr. C. J. Sibbett and Mrs. Philip Jourdan, wife of his 
last Secretary, have continued to bring in a steady flow of fresh 

Reproduced by permission of the Proprietors of Punch 


Trustee 1919-1955 

From the portrait by Simon Elwes 


Trustee since 1925 


biographical material of various kinds. During 1954 alone they 
contributed between them sixteen items, including two nine- 
teenth-century manuscript autobiographies and the record of a 
number of interviews. 

When, it may well be asked, is this material and the numerous 
personal files in Rhodes House Library as yet umavaged by a 
biographer to be put to use? The answer is that quite a number 
of years ago Sir Arthur Bryant, one of the most distinguished of 
living biographers and surely the most appropriate for this par- 
ticular biography, undertook to write the new Life of Mr. Rhodes 
so soon as he should have discharged his existing commitments. 
Sir Arthur is a tireless worker, but, as any author who may be 
reading these pages will be the first to appreciate, the horizon of 
his work-in-progress has tended to lengthen as he advanced upon 
it, and there is little chance of the new Life being completed 
before the end of the present decade. 

# # # 

In the post-war years Mr. Amery, since 193 3 &e senior 
Trustee, continued to preside over the meetings of the 
Trustees and to bring to them his wide experience of men and 
affairs; and Sir Edward Peacock has watched over, and aug- 
mented, the Trust's investments. But in 1948 the genial Sir 
Sothern Holland died; he had worked in former days with Dr. 
Jameson, and as a Trustee had collaborated with Sir Edward 
Peacock on the Finance Committee. In the same year we lost 
Captain Hutchinson, after only eight years' service as a Trustee. 
A rider to hounds all his life, he died in the saddle when out with 
the Heythrop, and at his funeral they read R. L. Stevenson's 
Under the wide and starry sky . . ., with its moving last couplet, 

Home is the sailor, home from sea, 
And the hunter home from the hill 

Three new Trustees were elected that year, Mr. Malcolm Mac- 
Donald, Mr. C. H. G. Millis and Professor K. C. Wheare. The 
invitation to Mr. MacDonald was a far-sighted instance of pre- 


emption; for he was serving as High Commissioner for the 
United Kingdom in South-East Asia, and seemed likely to remain 
for an indefinite period in the Far East. But the Trustees shrewdly 
decided to make sure of him before the inevitable competition 
for the services of so experienced an ex-Cabinet Minister com- 
menced. Mr. Mi.lUs, a Merton man with a distinguished war 
record and an ex-Governor of the B.B.C., is a colleague of Sir 
Edward Peacock's in the City and an expert on finance. Professor 
Wheare (Victoria and Oriel, 1929) is the second Rhodes Scholar 
to become a Trustee. He has been a Fellow of University, is now 
Gladstone Professor of Government and Public Administration 
and Fellow of All Souls, and has more than once been invited 
by the Government to advise some perplexed area of the British 
Commonwealth on its constitutional problems. Sir George 
Abell was elected a Trustee in 1949, a Corpus man, formerly 
Secretary to the Viceroy in India and now a Director of the Bank 
of England, and himself a walking exemplar to Rhodes Scholars, 
who in his undergraduate days actually obtained a First Class and 
Blues in cricket, Rugby football and hockey. 

It seems to me in retrospect that the most memorable feature 
of my period of office has been the uniform and quite exceptional 
good fortune with which, during it, almost all the key positions 
in our organization have been refilled. Roly Michener, it is true, 
was in charge of the Canadian Scholarships when I succeeded 
Lothian, and despite his since having held office in a provincial 
administration, and being now a Member of Parliament, he is 
still, I am thankful to say, Secretary to-day. But since 1939 new 
Secretaries have been appointed in all our other three major 
constituencies, and I can hardly think that any of these appoint- 
ments could have been improved upon. And there is a further 
significance in them. For not only have we here three exception- 
ally able, distinguished and well-liked representatives, but each 
of them is a busy man bearing heavy responsibilities elsewhere 
who could not have been expected to assume this office but for 
his loyalty to the Rhodes idea. Bram Gie (South African College 
School and University, 1916) is a leading lawyer, and director 


of great commercial concerns. George Paton (Victoria and 
Magdalen, 1926), who succeeded die tireless and generous Behan 
in 1953, is Vice-Chancellor of Melbourne University. And 
Courtney Smith (Iowa and Merton, 1938), who became Secretary 
in the United States when Frank Aydelotte retired, full of years 
and honour (including the honorary K.B.E.) at the end of 1952, 
is President of Swarthmore. 

In 1952 the Wardenship of Rhodes House, too, changed 
hands, for die second time. The knighthood conferred on C.K. 
almost coincided with the Aliens' move to the nearby Banbury 
Road. It was overdue recognition of distinction in many fields, 
but pre-eminently of his services to, and through, the Rhodes 
Trust. Even without the unmistakable precedent set by the 
Wylies, the memorable reign of the Aliens would have made it 
abundandy clear that, like the post of a good many sheriffs in 
Western films, though for different reasons, the Wardenship of 
Rhodes House is not merely 'a man's job', but a man's and a 
woman's too. And the succession of Bill and Gill Williams, as 
many former Rhodes Scholars will have realized during their 
inaugural world tour, bids most fair to maintain the prodigious 
standards set in the past. A new Warden who was not merely 
a Fellow of Balliol, Hon. Treasurer of the University Cricket 
Club, a member of the Hebdomadal Council and Editor of the 
Dictionary of National Biography, but from die North African 
campaigns onwards had held down the post of Chief of Intelli- 
gence under Field Marshal Montgomery seemed armed cap-k-pie 
with every imaginable qualification as well as some scarcely 
imaginable by the layman. 

Plans for the commemoration of the centenary of the Founder 
and the golden jubilee of his Scholarships by a Reunion at 
Oxford were pondered for at least three years before 1953. At 
first, it must be admitted in an England of still merciless austerity 
and an Oxford already bursting the seams of its available accom- 
modation not without misgivings; if I remember right, it was 


the Dean of Christ Church who first confidently predicted that 
we should be able both to house and to feed our guests. At first, 
too, we had thought, in the tradition of the earlier Reunion, of 
celebrations not wholly centred upon Oxford, of expeditions and 
social gatherings elsewhere and the descent of great personages 
from the outer world upon our Oxford occasions. We had even 
contemplated, and indeed tentatively arranged, a grand finale 
in Westminster Hall. But when my wife and I were in the 
United States and Canada in 1951, 1 sounded the predilections of 
numerous Rhodes Scholars, and in particular we both spent many 
agreeable hours mulling over the embryo programme with Frank 
and Marie Aydelotte on the veranda of their Princeton house 
sessions in which, I need hardly add, the wives foresaw the 
practical difficulties, and their solutions, more frequently, and 
more shrewdly, than their husbands. And it soon became evident 
that what was desired, by American and Canadian Rhodes 
Scholars at any rate, was a centripetal and family affair, a Senti- 
mental Journey to the haunts of their youth. They wanted, we 
soon realized, to spend their spare time hobnobbing with old 
friends, punting on the Cherwell and showing their wives the 
exact spot on which they were so nearly progged, and not in 
travelling in their best clothes to some resplendent but remote 
Reception. They did not think it necessary to invite Prime 
Ministers or Archbishops to deliver orations at the Reunion 
functions. The emphasis at this Oxford Reunion, in short, was 
to be no less decisively upon Oxford than upon Reunion. And 
so, in so far as we were able to canvas their opinions, said Rhodes 
Scholars everywhere. 

And thus, in June 1953, the Reunion took shape; a leisurely, 
domestic affair, without outside intervention or, until the Oxford 
celebrations had concluded, outside excursions. Throughout, as 
before, the Reunion, the University and College authorities were 
kindness itself; indeed, without their generosity neither the 
Sheldonian ceremony nor the Gaudy dinners nor the accommoda- 
tion of our guests nor, indeed, the Reunion itself would have 
been possible. And it is satisfactory to reflect that the gathering 


must have refurbished or refbrged many ageing links between 
the University and its Colleges and old members from overseas. 
Some of its success the Reunion undoubtedly owed to die 
weather, which had so recently showed litde mercy on the 
Coronation, but was uniformly benevolent to us, but much more 
to the sense of affectionate expectancy with which our guests 
arrived. It was, indeed, so conspicuously the Reunion guests 
who made the Reunion that one can look back upon its four 
days not merely as a historic and sunlit occasion, nor merely 
as a resounding tribute to the past of the Rhodes Scholarships, 
but as the happiest assurance of their future. When all was 
over, many private letters echoed Joseph Sagmaster's words, in 
the jubilee number of the American Oxonian, 'we took away a 
new sense of devotion I almost wrote "Dedication" to the 

I find myself recalling these words as I glance over the latest 
Memorandum issued to all members of Selection Committees, 
and the reports from overseas on the latest elections, for 1955. 
In one sense these elections, the first since the ascent of the 
Scholarship stipend to 600 per annum, inaugurate a new era 
and it should not be reckoned evidence of materialistic motives 
in the United States, where the competition of other awards is 
most severe, that a marked improvement in the quality of this 
year's entry has already been reported. In another sense, it is 
true, to think in terms of new eras would be quite misleading; 
for the process of election has developed smoothly, broadening 
down, like Tennyson's English Constitution, from precedent to 
precedent, as experience has accumulated. Exceptional devices, 
such as the preliminary selection kindly undertaken for many 
years in New Zealand by the Professorial Board, tend to dis- 
appear. And most of what the latest Memorandum has to tell 
Committee members about the composition of Committees, the 
principles of Selection, the interpretation of the Will or even the 
relative advantages, for a Rhodes Scholar, of advanced degrees 
and Honour Schools has found its way into a previous Memor- 
andum at one time or another during the last half-century; the 


Memorandum after all is 'an attempt to convey advice gathered 
from the experience of Selection Committees over many years'. 
Nevertheless, as, I hope, this latest specimen, in its turn, makes 
evident, those who are in charge of the delicate task of selecting 
Rhodes Scholars are always feeling their way forward, and it is 
chiefly because I believe that in the years ahead the principal 
formative influence upon the annual competition should come 
from the Rhodes fraternity itself that I now find myself recalling 
the words of Sagmaster, and many other Rhodes Scholars, after 
the Reunion of 1953. 

For die Associations of Rhodes Scholars, I believe, will con- 
tinue to interest themselves increasingly in the process of selection, 
and in the new generation of Scholars, and thereby will help to 
improve the quality of both. Increasingly in the smaller con- 
stituencies they are likely to provide the Committee with 
Secretaries. And they can facilitate certain interesting and fruitful 
experiments which during the last few years have been going on 
in many constituencies, where it has been found that an informal 
preliminary meeting, or meetings, with candidates, at a meal or 
other social occasion, in advance of the selection interview, will 
yield valuable additional sidelights on the potential Scholar's 
characteristics, besides easing the nervous strain, and curtailing 
the preliminaries, when he is eventually confronted with the 
Committee in awe-inspiring formal session. 

It was chiefly the eventual influence of the returned Rhodes 
Scholar on his own country which concerned the Founder, and 
as to this plenty of evidence is fordacoming later in this volume. 
I have no doubt that that familiar but shadowy figure, the future 
historian, will in due course recognize and record the far-reaching 
aggregate impact of successive generations of Rhodes Scholars, 
not only upon their native countries, but upon the Common- 
wealth as a whole and upon the relations, both collectively of the 
Commonwealth, and individually of its members, with Great 
Britain and the United States. But the influence of a Foundation 
designed to seek out and advance young men fitted by character 
and intelligence to become the leaders of their generation is 


necessarily subtle, and Who's Who is not always the most appro- 
priate evidence of it. The spectacle of American Rhodes Scholars 
serving as Christian missionaries in China might have surprised 
Mr. Rhodes, tut I do not think that it would have displeased 
him. And no one who has read the account of The Brain- 
washing of John Hayes, the missionary (Ohio and Merton, 1911), 
when a prisoner in Communist China, and of how inspired 
courage eventually enabled him to dominate his Communist 
interrogators, will doubt that seats in the Cabinet are not the 
only evidence that Rhodes Scholars have displayed, in the words 
of the Will, 'qualities of manhood, truth, courage and devotion 
to duty'. 

And the Founder would surely have welcomed the accumu- 
lating evidence of the varied influence in both hemispheres of the 
example set by his Scholarships. I have frequently been consulted 
by would-be imitators of the Rhodes Scholarships, and Frank 
Aydelotte refers below 1 to a number of educational foundations 
to which he has himself been able to make some contribution 
and which were established in consequence, or in partial imita- 
tion, of the Rhodes foundation. The last of these, though he 
does not mention it, paid us the compliment of quoting ver- 
batim, for its own candidates, from that definition of the all- 
round qualifications desired in a Rhodes Scholar which appears 
in our own Scholarship Memoranda. And it is natural that in an 
antinomian age there should be responses to the reminder, latent 
in the nature of the Rhodes Scholarships, that for significant 
achievement of any kind character is no less indispensable than 
intelligence. In a few American Universities there have been 
experiments based on the Rhodes example. And if Oxford 
not unnaturally continues to elect its own open Scholars on 
grounds of intelligence only, this very fact is likely, I think, in 
coming years to increase the significance of the contribution 
which the Rhodes Scholarships can make to the University. 

For it seems possible that the risk inherent in selecting the 
potential leaders of the nation for their display of one of the two 

!. 207f. 


necessary qualifications for leadership, while leaving to chance 
their possession of the other, has until recently been partially 
masked by the simple fact that a very substantial proportion of 
these Scholars have derived from the English public schools; for 
the English public schools have always laid marked indeed, 
their critics have sometimes said excessive emphasis upon the 
training of character. But the revolutionary changes in the 
economic structure of Britain are altering all this. The public 
schools no longer supply the same proportion either of open 
scholars or of the general body of undergraduates. Moreover, 
the type known to generations of College tutors as 'the good 
Commoner* of independent means, adequately industrious and 
intelligent, but not wholly dependent for his future upon his 
class in Schools, and variously active in the social and athletic 
life of College and University tends to diminish in numbers; 
and by this diminution the University the essence of which is 
to contain within its unity a multiple diversity is impoverished. 
In all these ways there are partial, and perhaps temporary, lacunae 
in the age-old and everchanging life of the University, which in 
one way and another the Rhodes Scholarships might seem 
expressly designed to remedy. 

But if it is true that in an age of change the University is 
inevitably changing, it is no less true that the University has been 
adapting itself to ages of change for seven hundred years, and 
has triumphantly survived them all. Now that the General 
Office of the Trust is in Oxford, the General Secretary continues 
to be able to survey the University through the eyes of contem- 
porary dons and undergraduates as well as through his own. 
And on one so placed it is inevitably borne in that the essential 
Oxford is ageless unchangeable and unchanged. Long after we 
are forgotten, punts will nose along the banks of the Cherwell 
under showers of hawthorn blossom in May, and in the Colleges 
talk as uninhibited as any in the world will continue to range 
over heaven and earth while clock after clock strikes midnight 
across the dreaming city. 






MR. RHODES died on March 26, 1902. The substance of 
his Will was published on April 5th. Almost everywhere 
the Will was accepted as an interesting, because unexpected, 
revelation of the Founder's true character. For the moment, at 
any rate, criticism shrank before the munificence of the endow- 
ment and the largeness of the conception. If the Will interested 
the world in general, it interested Oxford still more; not the 
compliment only, startling as that was, but the possibility also 
that this endowment might affect in some way the life and 
character of Oxford itself. There was no denying the compli- 
ment: Oxford accepted it, and was flattered. Less flattering 
comments, of course, there were, mainly from America. But if 
suggestions that an American could get a better education at 
home, or gibes at Oxford's 'sterile classicism', reached Oxford 
ears, they did not much disturb Oxford complacency. 

On the other hand, questions began to be asked in Oxford 
itself. Might not this endowment as much embarrass as enrich? 
What would these Scholars from overseas know or rather not 
know? What about Greek? Were concessions expected? The 
Times had quoted from the New York Evening Post e we greatly 
misread the present purpose and value of Oxford University if 
the endowment does not have an effect quite contrary to that 
which its founder had in view'. Was this a hint that Rhodes 
Scholars were more likely to influence Oxford than Oxford 
them? Presently, nearer home, an article appeared in the Oxford 
Magazine (of all places I) 1 which certainly was not reassuring. It 
may well happen that some of these [Rhodes Scholars] will find 
our time-worn Responsions wicket too narrow for them. The 
Scholar of the far West and South will not always be familiar 

1 Oxford Magazine, April 30, 1902. 


with the prize puzzles treasured "in Parviso"; 1 if that be so, we 
trust that the puzzles will go and the students will come in. So 
may the day for the reform of "Smalls" be hastened.' No 
wonder the champions of the Classical tradition sounded the 
alarm: in particular C. R. L. Fletcher of Magdalen and 'Tommy' 
Case of Corpus. 'This attack on Greek', wrote Fletcher in the 
Oxford Magazine,* 'is pretty certain to be made. . . . Let those who 
set any value on the best traditions of their University . . . make up 
their minds now to resist it with all their might.' Case was no less 
vigorous in the National Review* 'The Rhodes Scholarships will 

bring the Greek question to a crisis The argument will be 

the Rhodes Scholars cannot be expected to learn Greek.' But if 
Oxford weakened on Greek she would 'lose a unique opportunity 
of extending her best influence, and imperil the future of Greek, 
Latin and Christian civilization everywhere'. That was in 1902. 
Actually, although the days of 'compulsory Greek' were num- 
bered, it only passed finally away some seventeen years later; 
but the Greek fight was already on, and nobody knew what 
effect this 'barbarian' invasion might have upon the issue. 

That was one question which the Rhodes benefaction raised 
in academic minds. And there was another. If you could bring 
yourself to look this noble 'gift-horse' in the mouth, you might 
discover weak spots. You might find yourself reflecting that 
every undergraduate gets more out of College and University 
than he pays for, the balance being met out of 'corporate revenue* 
that is, broadly speaking, out of endowments. 4 Might it not, 
then, be argued that these overseas students, more than half of 
whom would be Americans or Germans, would draw on endow- 
ments not intended for them? If so, would it not be seemly that 
the Rhodes Trustees should, out of their residue, reputed to be 
considerable, come to the assistance of University or Colleges, 
or both? This criticism has perhaps an unpleasantly bursarlia 
ring about it: but it was actually made. R. W. Raper of Trinity 

1 I.e. in Responsions. 

2 Oxford Magazine, May 7, 1902. 

3 National Review, May 1902. 

4 The University was not, in 1902, in receipt of Government grants. 


made it to me, quite forcibly; 'Oxoniensis' made it in The Times 
of May 15, 1902; and a writer in the Oxford Magazine of 
April 30th put it in. the plainest terms: It is quite true that Mr. 
Rhodes's bequest does not directly help Oxford to meet the needs 
of these new Scholars: their contribution to the University does 
not answer to the demand they make upon it. ... We are not 
without hope that, in the end the Trustees may find themselves 
in possession of a remainder of money, which they may devote 
to the endowment of the University, and so to the direct benefit 
of Mr. Rhodes's Scholars.' People who made this criticism were 
not necessarily deaf to the appeal which Mr. Rhodes's venture 
had for the imagination, or unmoved by his faith in the spirit 
and influence of his old University: but they did want to remind 
the Trustees that there was, after all, an ^ s. d. side to this spec- 
tacular offer of nearly two hundred overseas students, and that 
just from that point of view the bequest did not increase Oxford's 
resources if anything, did the opposite. I passed this hint on to 
Lord Rosebery, the senior Trustee. All he said was, 'Rhodes 
has done his share: it is for others now'; but he said it with 
decision. That he did not always, even in those first years, take 
so decided a line will appear later. 

The interest which the publication of the Will had aroused in 
Oxford died down, and by the beginning of the following 
October term most of us had forgotten all about it. Presently, 
however, it was brought again to our minds by the arrival in 
Oxford of a representative of the Rhodes Trust, who came to 
discuss, with University and Colleges, the conditions under 
which these new 'Scholars' should be admitted. This was Dr. 
(later Sir George) Parkin. 

He was in the middle fifties, but there was a boyishness of 
spirit about him that made years of no account: and this, with his 
sense of humour, relieved the fundamental earnestness of his 
character. He had a good deal of the prophet in him; but he 
found it difficult to sustain that role for long at a time. There is 
a bust of him in Rhodes House, showing a lined face, precise 
hair and a hood elaborately correct: Parkin, and yet not Parkin. 


An old friend found the right criticism 'It lacks Parkin's dis- 
hevelled gaiety'. It was never long with Parkin before dishevelled 
gaity would come breaking in. He was a great talker, and loved 
to go all round a subject, 'seeing it from every angle' as he would 
often say. Nothing troubled him more in the early days than the 
difficulty he found in getting opportunities of discussing things 
with the Trustees. They were busy men and considered that it 
was for him to think things out, and make a recommendation: 
the Board must not become a debating club. Parkin wanted to 
talk it all out with them; and was pained when he found he 
couldn't. It would have been even harder for him than it was, 
had it not been for Mr. Hawksley, the Founder's solicitor, friend 
and trustee. 

Bourchier Hawksley was a man of great kindliness and in- 
exhaustible patience, to whom, as it happened, it mattered little 
at what hour he went to bed. Here was Parkin's man. They 
spent many an hour together, after most people were in bed, 
thrashing things out. I know from Parkin himself how much 
this meant to him. And I, too, the first Oxford Secretary, owe 
Hawksley a great debt of gratitude. If I ran into a difficulty, or 
wanted advice, I was glad, in those early years, to have Hawksley 
to consult. Either he would run down to Oxford for the night, 
or I would pay a visit to his office in Mincing Lane. There I knew 
I should find him, his table buried under bundles of protesting 
papers, himself, so far as I was allowed to see, with nothing more 
important to do than listen to me. He was indeed the working 
Trustee of that time. It may be that he is not much remembered 
now; but in any story of the Scholarships his place should be 
secure, not only for such part as he may have had in shaping 
Mr. Rhodes's Will, but also, and perhaps even more, for what he 
did to help the Scholarships over the difficult years of their 


To come back to Parkin, talking (at some length) to University 
and College authorities. There were two main problems. The 
first was, how to secure Oxford against the risk of these overseas 
Scholars proving unable to pass Responsions, more widely 
known at that time as 'Smalls'. Elementary as that examination 
was, it did include, as obligatory subjects, both Latin and Greek; 
and these were languages to which less and less attention was 
being paid in the New World. 

Parkin and the University came to an agreement that there 
should be an examination equivalent to Responsions, and that 
no one should be eligible for a Rhodes Scholarship unless he had 
either passed this examination or had secured exemption from 
Responsions in some other way. The examination was to be run 
by the Oxford Delegacy of Local Examinations, the Secretary of 
which, H. T. Gerrans of Worcester, was ready to examine any- 
body, anywhere at any time. The papers were to be set in 
Oxford, sent to wherever in the world they might be wanted, 
done by candidates under authorized supervision, returned under 
seal to Oxford, read and marked by Oxford examiners. That 
seemed safe enough, especially as the formidable Gerrans would 
be keeping his eye on it all the time. Anyone who passed this 
examination was to be free of Responsions. This met the diffi- 
culty: and some such safeguard was no doubt necessary at that 
stage. But it was a cumbrous nuisance, and seriously affected 
competition for the Scholarships. The history of this incubus is 
as follows (I give it as a matter of record; it can easily be skipped). 

The first relief came in 1909 when a decree was passed in 
Congregation permitting anyone who had 'satisfied the exam- 
iners' in the Rhodes Qualifying Examination in Latin and 
Mathematics to take Greek by itself at some later examination. 
On this the Trustees authorized Committees to elect anyone to 
a Scholarship who had passed that examination in Latin and 
Mathematics, whether or no he had passed in Greek. To the 
'doubtful starter* this made a world of difference. It was one 
thing to 'mug up' a 'useless' language like Greek on the off chance 
of passing in it, with thereafter an off chance of pleasing the 


Selectors; quite another to do that with the Scholarship safely in 
your pocket. 

So things continued until the end of 1918. By that time 
Oxford had had fourteen years' experience of Rhodes Scholars, 
and knew what to expect. It was growing tired, too, of hearing 
from many quarters that it was not getting the ablest men, and 
that the qualifying examination was, at least to some extent, the 
reason. The war was over. Many things would be making a 
fresh start, Rhodes Scholarships among them. Why not take the 
occasion to get rid of this bugbear of an examination? Parkin 
had been anxious to do so for some time: but he was in America. 
At that moment the Oxford Magazine asked me to write an 
article on the Rhodes Scholarships and any contemplated changes. 
I did so, and suggested that the most hopeful change would be 
the disappearance of the Qualifying Examination. I followed this 
up with a letter to all Heads of Colleges, asking whether they 
would approve of Rhodes Scholars being elected on their records 
without previous examination. 

They did approve: and from then onwards the road to a 
Rhodes Scholarship was open to any man of ability and character, 
no matter what the field of his studies. If elected, he would still 
find as many academic hurdles in his path as before, but he would 
take them as an elected Scholar. He had 'got his Blue'. 

The second problem that was troubling Parkin when he came 
to Oxford in the late autumn of 1902 was how to secure that the 
Scholars would be distributed throughout the University as Mr. 
Rhodes wished them to be. This was a matter not for the 
University but for the Colleges. So round the Colleges* Parkin 
went. They responded to the challenge generously, agreeing to 
take so many Scholars a year. Numbers varied. One enthusiastic 
Head offered to take as many as the Trustees cared to send. 
Corpus would not commit itself to more than one in any one 
year. Of course, no College was surrendering any particle of its 
right to choose its members, and fix its own standards. All that 

The main entrance, in South Parks Road 


it was undertaking was to accept, up to a given maximum, such 
Rhodes applicants as seemed to come up to those standards, and 
to give them thereafter a fair chance to justify their admission. 
But that was all that Parkin wanted. He went off on his organ- 
izing travels, with the comfortable feeling that the Colleges could, 
between them, absorb the Rhodes Scholars, and that if diffi- 
culties should arise it would not be he, but the Oxford Secretary, 
who would have to deal with them. 

As I was that Secretary for the first twenty-eight years, and 
have a lively recollection of experiences, sometimes trying, at 
other times amusing, connected with this annual attempt to 
bring Scholar and College happily together, it may contribute to 
the story if I let my memory roam. 

Assigning Scholars to Colleges was out of the question. Twelve 
years as Fellow of a College left no doubt in my mind as to that. 
Colleges would insist on complete freedom of selection. Scholars- 
elect, on the other hand, would certainly claim the right to 
express a preference. Parkin and I had accordingly agreed that 
each Scholar should include in his dossier a list of Colleges in 
order of preference. It was down these lists that I worked, until 
the glad day came when I could write against a man's name 

'accepted by College'. In the early years these lists were 

haphazard affairs, drawn up with little knowledge of the character 
or standing of the different Colleges, and varying considerably in 
length. A few Colleges were obviously more widely known 
than others: 1 but by and large (if the pedants will allow me this 
convenient expression) most men, at any rate most American 
men, who found themselves suddenly Rhodes Scholars had 
pathetically little upon which to base a selection. Things did 
slowly improve: but how slow the improvement was is illus- 
trated by a letter I received a few years ago from an ex-Rhodes 

1 In the first six full years Balliol topped the list, appearing as first choice in 146 lists 
out of a total of 440, followed, at a long interval, by New College, Trinity, Christ 
Church, Oriel and Magdalen. 



Scholar describing his embarrassment, as late as 1919, when faced 
with the need to choose a College. 

You will remember [he wrote] that I was in hospital when the 
Scholarship was awarded me. You wrote me asking for my list of 
Colleges. There was no one I could ask. So I bribed the ambulance- 
driver to take me to New York Library. I was on crutches, I remember, 
and the elevators were not working, but I managed the long flights of 
marble stairs, and finally got about a dozen books on Oxford, which 
I read in, and looked at all the pictures. At the end I thought each 
College was lovelier than any other, and that they would all suit me 
fine ! In this state of delightful confusion I found a telegraph office 
and cabled asking you to place me where you could. 

That was a responsibility which I was careful as a rule to refuse 
to take; but this time, what with the hospital, the crutches, the 
cable and the need for hurry, I did do the choosing. I 'chose' 
Brasenose; and the letter ends, 1 found it was just the College for 
me*. Not less was he just the man for Brasenose. What makes 
this story significant in this context is that it reflects conditions, 
not somewhere in Wyoming shall we say? in 1904 or 1905, 
but in New York City in ipip. 1 

The embarrassment felt by a Scholar when asked to name six 
or eight Colleges in order of preference will have been nothing 
to what he must have felt when he heard later from me, as many 
were bound to do, that he had not been accepted by any of his 
top choices, or even and it needed only a little extra bad luck in 
the run of the game for that to happen by any College he had 
named. 2 

Later, both Rhodes Scholars and those who elected them, came 
better to understand how chancy a business that of getting 
accepted by a College was, and how easily one's 'order of 
preference 5 could get mangled in the process. But that was not 

1 The Scholar in question, Henry Allen Moe, was elected to an Honorary Fellowship 
of Brasenose in 1955. (Ed.) 

a The actual figures for the 'Colonials' and the Americans in two of the earliest full 
years (1905 and 1907), put together, show the following results of 127 Scholars, 56 got 
their first choice, 20 their second, 16 their third, 10 their fourth, one his fifth, 2 their 
sixth, one his seventh, one his eighth; and 20 no College they had named. 


so at first; and to many a Rhodes Scholar in the earlier years his 
failure to get into the College, or even into any of the several 
Colleges of his choice, despite a fine record and flaming testi- 
monials, must have been difficult to understand, or to accept 
without resentment. And the testimonials could flame. Dr. Cyril 
Bailey tells me that in one of the earliest years of Rhodes Scholars, 
A. L. Smith of Balliol, at that time still History Tutor, came into 
the Quad one day having just read some forty dossiers of Rhodes 
applicants. 1 don't know what we are to do', he exclaimed, 
'every one of these men is a cross between the archangel Gabriel 
and C. B. Fry.' The most remarkable of these early dossiers that 
I recall was one that included some fifty testimonials, on each of 
which was noted the special quality (of those named in the Will) 
to which that particular document was testifying. Alas ! the 
Oxford record of this 'Admirable Crichton' was well, let us 
say, disappointing. Not so his life. That has brought increasing 
honour to himself and to the Scholarships. Nor has any Rhodes 
Scholar done the Trust more loyal or, within his own sphere, 
more useful service. I have found it wholesome at times to 
remind myself of his story whenever Oxford Schools results have 
not been what one had hoped. 

Occasionally, as it seemed to me, a Scholar who had failed to 
obtain his choice brought his soreness with him to Oxford. But 
if that was so and it may have existed only in my sympathetic 
imagination he soon lost it in the interest of new experience 
and the healthy atmosphere of a Junior Common Room, and 
before their three years were up (three years were the rule then) 
most Rhodes Scholars had come to identify themselves com- 
pletely with their Colleges, and to feel for them all, or nearly all, 
the affection and loyalty that Oxford Colleges traditionally 

And there is something else to be said. Sometimes in the ill 
fortune of his 'preferred' list a man was better served than he 
imagined. Many, if not most, of the lists sent in during those 
early years were headed by four or five of the largest Colleges, 
embarrassing the latter with more applications than they could 


consider. There could, be only one result. Inevitably many of 
the applicants had to find a home in some smaller College. 'Bad 
luck', thought the victim. But he may have been wrong. As we 
all know, there are men who will get more out of a smaller 
College than they ever would out of a larger; and that is more 
particularly true of men who come, as Rhodes Scholars do, into 
a world as strange to them as they to it. I recall the comment 
made on one Rhodes Scholar by a College tutor (admittedly a 
generous judge of his own pupils) : 'If we [i.e. the dons] all 
disappeared, W. would run the College perfectly without us'. 
And here is an exact quotation from a terminal report: 'M. & 
most admirable man, who has exerted a very good influence in 
the College, all sections of which will regret his departure'. 
Both these men were at smallish Colleges; and I question whether 
either of them would have become, to the same extent, a person 
in his College had that been one of the larger ones. But it is by 
becoming just that that a Rhodes Scholar gets much of what 
Mr. Rhodes sent him to Oxford to get. 
# # # 

But to leave the Scholars worrying over their mangled lists, 
and come to the Secretary. He, too, as responsible for getting 
them all safely planted out each year, had his share of worries; 
to which anyone, from the Head of a College to a newspaper 
man, could at any moment contribute. 

In all the business of getting the Scholars distributed over the 
University the Colleges co-operated splendidly. They did not, 
however, always realize how important it was to keep things 
moving by making prompt decisions. It not infrequently hap- 
pened that dossiers piled up at one or two of the Colleges, and 
stuck there, causing a block in the circulation which threatened a 
breakdown. At that point I would sometimes go in person to 
the Head of the College to extract a decision and recover the 
'rejected addresses'. I recall a number of such visits, 1 but pick 

1 Including one to the then Warden of Merton, of whom legend was already making 
an inaccessible ogre, but whom I found, when I reached him, to be, after all, not so very 
different from the quite human Thomas Bowman whom I had known in the nineties of 
last century. 


out one to mention here. It was to the Dean of Christ Church, 
but might just as well have been to almost any other Head of a 
House. The Dean apologized for the delay, picked up the 
dossiers, glanced at notes made by himself or others on the 
envelopes, put four or five on one side, muttering as he did so 
(if not in every case, certainly in most) 'recommended by an old 
member of the House', and handed me back the remainder. 
Here, I felt, was something delightfully characteristic of Oxford. 
What chance had the most flaming testimonial against 'an old 
member of the House' ? 

It was in connection with Rhodes Scholar applications that I 
received one day a visit from an old friend who had recently 
been elected Head of his College. He blew breezily in, and 
announced with a frank and almost boyish zest, that for the 
future he could only accept such Rhodes Scholars as put his 
College first on their list. I said I understood, and even sympa- 
thized; but went on to point out that, if all Colleges took that 
line and why should they not? it would bring Rhodes' s 
experiment to a quick end. Every year we had from sixty to 
seventy Rhodes Scholars to dispose of among some twenty 
Colleges. How were we to secure that all these individuals, 
elected from as many different places, and with no communica- 
tion with each other, should so order their 'first choice* that the 
Oxford jigsaw puzzle could be comfortably completed? I pro- 
duced my chart of that year's choices first, second, third and so 
on. We studied it together. That 'gave him to think'. He 
withdrew his ultimatum and promised to do the best he could 
for us. He kept his promise loyally; and I like to think that 
neither he nor his College had any reason to regret the considera- 
tion shown us. This incident has its interest as suggesting the 
trouble Colleges could so easily have made for us had they been 
meticulous in inquiry as to where they stood on an applicant's 
list of preferences. Fortunately, they showed a kindly indifference. 

Most of the incidents connected with this business of settling 
the Scholars comfortably into Colleges, even when embarrassing 


or irritating, had their comic side. Not, however, the following. 
One year The Times, commenting on a Report, issued from the 
Trust Office in London, which gave the number of Rhodes 
Scholars actually in residence at the various Colleges, drew 
attention to two Colleges as having the same large number 
'presumably for rather different reasons'. As one of the Colleges 
was among the largest and most sought after, the other, at that 
time, among the smaller and less prominent, this comment 
admitted of an unpleasant interpretation, and was so interpreted 
by the smaller College, and resented. That was not surprising. 
What was surprising was that the Trustees were suspected of 
having been in some way responsible for the comment. I received 
a letter from the Head of the College in which I was asked to 
understand that we must not look in the future for the same 
generous treatment as we had hitherto received. My disclaimer 
of Trust responsibility and expression of Trust regret cleared the 
air a little: but the mischief was done. The College fixed a limit 
to the number of Rhodes Scholars that they would take in any 
one year: and it was not always easy thereafter to get them to go 
even to their own modest limit. This happened many years ago 
so many that hardly any of those concerned can still be here to 
remember it. It is interesting to me to reflect that, were the same 
situation to arise to-day, it would Hot occur to any journalist, 
however stupid, spiteful or indiscreet, to make the comment that 
his predecessor made. There is change, even in Oxford. I add 
these incidents despite their insignificance to illustrate the kind 
of small worry that was apt to beset me in the course of the 
normal 'placing' of Scholars. 

Sometimes it was the Scholars themselves who made my path 
rough. Every candidate for a Rhodes Scholarship had to include 
in the material which he submitted to the Selection Committee 
a 'personal statement' giving some account of himself, his 
interests and his aims. On one occasion two candidates, who 
were at the same University and were close friends, put their 


heads together, and concocted a flowery and pretentious 'state- 
ment', of which, as they were standing in different constituencies, 
they thought each could safely make use. They were both 
elected. In due course their dossiers reached my office. All 
might still have been well, had they not sent in identical lists of 
preferred Colleges, and specially asked to be assigned to the same 
College. Round went the two dossiers each with its tell-tale 
duplicated 'statement'; and back they came to me. It was a great 
relief when at last they reached a College generous enough, or 
with sufficient sense of humour, to accept these simple-minded 

One year a Scholar-elect applied privately to Queen's, and, 
thanks to influential backing, received an encouraging reply. 
He then wrote in the same sense to BallioL Finally, he sent me 
his list of Colleges in order of preference. New College headed 
it. I sent him, of course, to New College; and he was accepted. 
Presently, first Queen's and then Balliol telephoned to inquire 
about the papers of Mr. X who had applied for admission. I 
could only say that, in accordance with his official list, I had 
sent him to New College, where he had been accepted. The 
Provost of Queen's, legitimately annoyed, sent me the man's 
letter. It was a plain request to be admitted to the College. 
Trivial as this sounds to-day, it was disturbing at the time, when 
my one aim was to keep relations sweet between the Trust and 
the Colleges. I wrote the man down as a 'rotter'. He did splen- 
didly, both at Oxford and afterwards. Death cut short a fine 

On another occasion it was not the Scholar who made the 
trouble, but his former Headmaster, a keen old Magdalen man, 
who wrote to the President (Warren) asking him to take this 
desirable young man. But the desirable young man had views 
of his own, and put Balliol first on his list. Balliol took him. 
It was not long before I heard from the President asking when I 
was going to send him the papers. I explained. Warren, of 
course, accepted the explanation, but managed to leave me with 


the feeling that he was annoyed, with the man, with the Head- 
master and, however unreasonably, with me. 

Once it was from the Scholar's family that the trouble came. 
I had arranged for the man's entry at one of die Colleges of his 
choice when I received a letter from his mother telling me that 
he had decided to resign his Scholarship and wished me to cancel 
any arrangements I might have made for him. Not feeling quite 
happy about this motherly concern, I wrote to the Scholar him- 
self. He wrote back that I could expect him in October. He 
came, to the advantage of die Scholarships as well as of himself. 

The Trustees soon realized that they would need someone to 
represent them in Oxford, to deal both with Scholars and with 
Colleges. In February 1903 I heard from Lord Rosebery, 
Chairman of the Board (whom I knew in consequence of having 
at one time acted as tutor to his two small sons), that they were 
looking out for someone in Oxford to act as a channel of com- 
munication with the Colleges and to keep a friendly eye on the 
Scholars pay them their cheques, discuss their difficulties with 
them and, as he with his memories of Victorian Oxford put it, 
'ask them sometimes to breakfast'. Would I care to be considered 
for the job ? I hesitated. That needs perhaps explanation. To-day 
the position of Oxford Secretary to the Rhodes Trustees, com- 
bined as it is with that of Warden of Rhodes House, is one of 
established dignity and importance, scarcely one which a young 
and undistinguished don would hesitate about accepting. In 
1903 it was nothing of the sort. The Rhodes Trustees were an 
outside body, and what kind of position within the University 
their representative would have, or could make for himself, was 
unpredictable. I was a Fellow and tutor, of some twelve years 
standing, at a College to which I was much attached. I hesitated. 
However, after thinking it over, I decided to accept the position, 
should it be offered me. In due course I was invited to lunch at 
Lord Rosebery's *to meet the Rhodes Trustees'. Of the seven 
original Trustees, Lord Milner and Sir Lewis Michell were in 


South Africa, and Mr. Alfred Beit unable to come. The four 
present were: Lord Rosebery, the host he always was, delightful 
and somewhat alarming; Lord Grey, generously encouraging; 
Dr. Jameson (not yet Six Starr), his eyes alight with a faintly 
cynical but not unkindly humour; and Mr. Hawksley, flushed 
and friendly. Almost the only thing I can recall of that interview 
is something Jameson said. There was talk as to what Rhodes 
had really hoped would come out of his Scholarships. *I know', 
said Jameson, smiling with the gentle irony of a friend who 
knew all sides of Rhodes's character. 'Sooner or later, another 
Cecil Rhodes.' 1 

Lord Rosebery had his way, as he no doubt knew all along he 
would; and it was in this 'no damned nonsense of merit about it' 
fashion that I became the first Rhodes Secretary in Oxford. 
Actually, I was appointed to be 'RJbodes Agent at Oxford 
University*, for which singularly unacademic title I feel sure Lord 
Rosebery was responsible, for in conversation with me he 
quoted, in justification, the tide of Lord Cromer, 'British Agent 
in Egypt', which certainly was a sufficiently distinguished analogy. 
However, you needed to have been Foreign Secretary to feel 
comfortable with 'agent' and it was not long before the Trustees 
themselves came to think it inappropriate and, at the end of 
1904, formally cancelled it, and substituted 'Secretary'. 

Someone told me probably Hawksley that the Trustees had 
played with the idea of appointing some distinguished person 
from outside to represent them at Oxford. That would have 
been a gamble. In those early days while relations between the 
Rhodes Trustees and the Colleges or University were still 
indeterminate, and even delicate, local knowledge mattered more 
than distinction. I had been a don, and was about to be Proctor. 
I might be expected to know something of academic machinery 
and the temper of Senior Common Rooms. Of course, I made 
mistakes. Someone from outside might well have made more. 

1 1 have somewhere seen this remark as made by Jameson in another context. He may 
well have made it more than once. He certainly made it at the lunch at which I was 


I had not been long appointed when I received a letter from 
Lord Rosebery telling me that Dr. Parkin had suggested coming 
to live in Oxford. Had I any views as to this suggestion? I had. 
I had just been appointed to represent the Trustees in Oxford Tor 
all purposes connected with the Scholarships'. This was an 
entirely new position. No tradition clung about it to give it 
character. It had to make itself. And, as a wise man once said, 
'The beginning is more than half of the whole'. Now, I was 
very much of a novus homo. Parkin, on the other hand, was 
already a distinguished figure. He was many years my senior, 
and held an important office in the Rhodes Trust had already, 
indeed, before the appointment of an Oxford representative, 
been in Oxford discussing preliminary problems with the 
University and the Colleges. Parkin's position was that of 
Organizing Secretary. The world, so to say, was his province, 
Oxford mine. But this distinction, of which Oxford would be, 
if at all, only indifferently aware, would, I felt, be powerless 
against Parkin's distinguished presence, once he were on the spot 
as a resident. No matter where the jus might lie, de facto he would 
stand, in the mind of Oxford, as the Trustees' representative and 
spokesman. That would make the going very difficult for the 
newly-appointed Secretary (or Agent). I put this to Lord 
Rosebery, who replied that the Trustees agreed with me. Parkin 
settled in a house at Goring, of which many a Rhodes Scholar 
will have delightful memories. I had not at that time made 
Parkin's acquaintance, nor could I foresee how closely and 
delightfully for the next eighteen years I should be associated 
with him, or how continually we should be crossing each into 
the other's province, sharing the problems and the experiences 
of the work upon which, with some difference of function, we 
were both engaged. But, whatever I had foreseen, I should still 
have held that the right policy, at that moment, was to leave the 
first holder of this novel position to make good on his own, and 
not either bolster him up or cramp him by settling a senior Trust 
official on the same ground. 


As no Rhodes Scholars were due before October, I had six 
months in which to think about my new job, its scope and its 
limits. I saw one or two things clearly. First, the Trustees' 
Secretary might live in Oxford, and have dealings with under- 
graduates or Colleges, but he would be, academically speaking, 
an outsider. He had not been appointed by the University, and 
had no recognized status in the University. Secondly, just 
because he was an outsider, he would have to be careful not to 
interfere, or seem to want to do so. And thirdly, in so far as lie 
was representing, not the Trustees only, but also to some extent 
the Scholars, there would be something Janus-like in his position; 
he might have to look two ways at once. 

Here is an illustration of the last point. One year a Rhodes 
Scholar decided to take 'Schools' at the end of his second year, 
as his standing allowed him to do. He failed. Under the Univer- 
sity Statutes, as his name had not appeared in the Class Lists at 
all, he was entitled to go in again the next year, and get whatever 
class the examiners of that year might think he deserved. That is 
what he settled to do. He spent the Long Vacation on the 
Continent, and was just preparing to come up for the Michaelmas 
term when he discovered that he was not expected. His College, 
it now appeared, had a rule that anyone who failed in Final 
Honour Schools went out of residence. That hit him hard. 
There he was his summer behind him, his money spent, no job 
secured for the coming year and his Rhodes Scholarship for- 
feited. He wrote to me. Could not something be done? I 
wondered. After some correspondence with the College, I was 
invited to meet the Head of the College and two (or it may have 
been three) of the tutors. Such interviews are not often enter- 
taining. This one almost was. It seemed to me that the College 
authorities were feeling that their failure to make it plain from 
the start what the consequences of being 'ploughed' in Schools 
would be had put, not the Scholar only, but themselves too, in 
an uncomfortable position. Was there any way out of the tangle ? 
That was where I came in. If I, speaking for the Trustees, would 
ask the College to relax their rule in this case, the College might 


reconsider their decision. But I boggled at that. The Trustees, 
I explained, did not wish, much less ask, Colleges to lower their 
standards for Rhodes Scholars. There might be circumstances 
in this particular case and, speaking for the victim, I thought 
that perhaps there were which made the enforcement of the 
rule more than ordinarily severe. That, however, was something 
as to which a decision lay with the College. The Trustees would 
accept, and act on, any decision to which the College might come. 
There was more talk; but it got us nowhere. As I rose to go, 
1 hope, Mr. Provost', 1 I said, 'I have made my position plain'. 
'Mr. Wylie', he replied, with a twinkle (almost a wink), 'your 
attitude has been eminently correct/ -The next day a note arrived 
informing me that Mr. X was coming back. I wish I could add 
that he got a First the following summer. 

That Colleges, or at any rate individual dons, could be 
sensitive about 'interference', or any appearance of it, was 
brought home to me quite early in my time. It was our custom 
in those days to have a photograph taken each summer term of 
the Rhodes Scholars as a group. One year I arranged the photo- 
graph for 9.0 a.m., thinking to keep clear of academic claims. 
Unfortunately, a Merton Rjiodes Scholar, anxious to be in the 
photograph, not only 'cut* a lecture which his own tutor was 
giving, but also (with indifferent tact, as I thought) pleaded my 
'summons' as his excuse. His tutor was the late Arthur Johnson. 
Those who remember that most human and delightful of men 
will hardly need to be told the sequel. He came post-haste to 
my house (we were near neighbours) and told me just what he 
thought of me and my 'damned impudence'. He enjoyed that; 
and we parted as good friends as ever I would almost say better. 
And that, too, Johnson's friends will hardly need to be told. 
But I saw that I must keep thinking. 

1 It did not happen to be 'Provost', but 'Provost' will do. 



SO far as Oxford is concerned, the Rhodes Scholarships began 
in October 1903, when six South Africans and five Germans 
came into residence. A seventh South African belonging to 1903 
postponed one term, and came up in January 1904. 

Only Germans and South Africans were elected for 1903, for 
the simple reason that there was as yet no machinery anywhere 
for electing Rhodes Scholars. But Germany needed no machin- 
ery. The Scholarships had been left to the 'German Emperor for 
the time being*, and the Kaiser had no difficulty in nominating 
five Scholars in time for them to reach Oxford by October 1903. 
And South Africa, too, could get on, for the moment at any 
rate, without machinery. The Founder had left one Scholarship 
to Natal, and one each to four named Schools in Cape Colony, 
and three annual Scholarships to Rhodesia. The Schools at once 
nominated their Scholars, and in Natal and Rhodesia the Direc- 
tors of Education were authorized to make recommendations to 
the Trustees. That is why it was possible for the year 1903 to 
steal a march on 1904 and, in however incomplete a fashion, to 
inaugurate the Rhodes Scholarships in Oxford. 

But these seven South Africans and five Germans were not, 
strictly, the first Rhodes Scholars. They were only the first to 
reach Oxford. Already before his death Mr. Rhodes had begun 
to experiment with Scholarships to Oxford, by giving one to 
the Diocesan College School at Rondebosch, in which, as his 
neighbour, he had taken a close and affectionate interest. The 
first election to this Scholarship was held in February 1902. The 
School authorities, having difficulty in deciding between two 
candidates, consulted Rhodes as to whether the Scholarship 
might be divided between the two boys. Mr. Rhodes replied: 
'If two boys are very close please understand it is within your 



discretion to apportion the Scholarship with the approval of the 
parents: but only in cases in which the parents can afford to assist, 
for you must not starve your successful candidate at Oxford'. 
How characteristic ! And how touching ! The Founder, on his 
death-bed (he died on March 26th), is still thinking closely 'enough 
about his Scholarship to add that warning. The Scholarship was 
divided between the two boys. As, however, they were then 
only sixteen years old, they did not come into residence until 
October 1904, being deprived thereby of the privilege, which 
should have been theirs, of being the first Rhodes Scholars to 
appear in Oxford. And, when they did come up, their Scholar- 
ship being paid from the School and not through the Trust, it 
took us some time to realize that these two young men, one at 
Oriel 1 and the other at Exeter, 2 although on a separate foundation, 
were not merely Rhodes Scholars, but Rhodes Scholars in a 
unique sense, as having been almost nominated by Rhodes 
himself elected at any rate in his lifetime and with his knowledge 
and approval. Their names will always head any list of Rhodes 
Scholars, as Pre-Will Scholars. 

I had often wondered what these overseas Scholars, who were 
to mean so much to me, would be like; and had looked forward 
to my first meeting with them with interest, and perhaps with a 
little trepidation. It came upon me unexpectedly, and was not 
what I had pictured it as likely to be. It was some days before 
the opening of the Michaelmas term. I came into the Lodge at 
Brasenose (where I was still living), and was met by the porter: 
'Three gentlemen to see you, Sir'. I turned, to find myself facing 
three immaculate young Germans, complete with top hats, frock 
coats and patent-leather boots. They clicked their heels as one 
man, and bowed. The first Rhodes Scholars ! Spotless, too ! 
And there was I, straight from golf on the old links above 
Hinksey, muddy and bedraggled. A disconcerting contrast! 

1 Frank Reid, Q.C., Chancellor of the Church of the Province of South Africa. 

2 W. F. Yeoman (who died in 1944). 


And, indeed, I thought I detected on the faces of the Germans a 
faint air of surprise, as though for them, too, this interview was 
not quite what they had expected and dressed up for. I carried 
them off and gave them tea: and that was the last I saw of the 
top hats. 

The Founder's motive in establishing some Scholarships for 
Germans was political rather than educational. In sympathy with 
this motive the Kaiser would seem deliberately to have chosen 
for his Scholars young men who might be expected to reach 
positions of influence in later life. At any rate, the majority of 
those whom he nominated in those earlier years were from 
families of social or official importance. This was resented in 
some University circles; and there came one year a German 
professor protesting to the Trustees that the Rhodes Scholars 
were being selected from too restricted a field: the 'real student' 
was not getting his chance. Hawksley asked Parkin and myself 
to lunch to meet the professor. We grew sympathetic over 
lunch; and I began to fear that the professor was being led to 
hope that the Trustees might do something about it. But do 
what? It was, after all, no business of the Trustees to report 
German criticisms to the Kaiser, who had complete freedom of 
nomination under the Will. If they were going to protest, they 
would have to do so on the ground of criticism from Oxford. 
But I was not at all sure that there was criticism in Oxford serious 
enough to justify a protest to the 'All-High'. On getting back 
to Oxford I wrote to every College at which there had been 
German Rhodes Scholars. The answers made it plain that the 
Colleges concerned were satisfied with things as they were. I 
sent the letters to London: and at the next meeting of the Trustees 
(so I heard later) Lord Rosebery disposed of the matter by saying 
that as the Emperor was satisfied and Oxford was satisfied, he 
saw no reason why the Trustees should not be. And perhaps that 
was as well. There is no saying how criticism of the Imperial 
nominations would have been received in Berlin. Probably it 
would not have been allowed to reach the Emperor himself. 


When Parkin was preparing his book on the Rhodes Scholar- 
ships, 1 and wrote to Berlin for information as to the principles 
upon which, and the methods by which, the German Rhodes 
Scholars were chosen, he found he could get none. Perhaps it 
was naive to think that he would. 

A day or two after the arrival of these Germans, one of them 
came to me with a long face. He had been presented with a bill 
showing that he already owed the College ^93 made up as 
follows: Entrance fee 5, Caution money 40, Furniture .48. 
No one who goes back to Victorian Oxford will be shocked by 
this demand. An entrance fee was common. Caution money, 
not always as much as ^40, was required of 'Commoners* at 
most, if not all, Colleges: and from the College point of view a 
Rhodes Scholar was a Commoner. As for the furniture charge, 
that is as typically Victorian as a 'deer-stalker' or a 'bone-shaker'. 
Up to this century it was customary, or at any rate quite common, 
for a freshman to have to buy the furniture he found in his rooms 
from his predecessor in them, at a price fixed by the College 
valuer, recouping himself on vacating the rooms by getting the 
then value of the furniture from his successor. The sum of .48 
for furniture will probably have meant that the rooms were 
among the more impressive in the College; but so was the man's 
name. Altogether, in 1903, the bill for .93, however em- 
barrassing, was not, at some Colleges, abnormal. But it certainly 
embarrassed my German, the first quarter of whose Scholarship 
was for ^62 105. (the German Scholarships being for 250, not 
^300). With some help from me, he survived the crisis. I saw, 
however, that something must be done, or there would be trouble 
all down the line. The Trustees agreed to guarantee Colleges 
against loss on Rhodes Scholars' battels up to .50 per man, on 
the understanding that caution money would be waived. The 
furniture situation eased itself, Colleges coming more and more 
themselves to own such furniture as would normally be found 
in a room, charging the occupant a rent for its use. 

This was not the only embarrassing situation in which this 

1 The Rhodes Scholarships, Constable, 1913. 


young German found himself. He was at Magdalen, but also a 
member of the Bullingdon Club. One summer evening the 
Bullingdon, after a successful dinner, voted, by way of a spirited 
finish to the proceedings, to raid the Magdalen Deer Park, secure 
a deer and brighten up the High. The raid failed. It became 
known in Magdalen that our German had taken part in it. Here 
was an almost unforgivable offence against the Oxford code of 
manners one might almost say of morals. For once I found the 
President, Mr. (later Sir Herbert) Warren, frankly angry. A 
man, he complained, who could help outsiders to raid his own 
College had not begun to understand the meaning of College 
loyalty. I feared the worst. Somehow but at what cost I for- 
get the culprit survived. I question, however, whether Warren 
ever forgave him. 

Let me add, however, that no Head of a House was readier 
with sympathy or more generous in appreciation than Warren. 
He took an interest, not merely in the Rhodes Scholarships as 
an idea, but in Rhodes Scholars as individuals, distinguished and 
undistinguished alike. He took a deal of trouble over Rhodes 
Scholar applications (I often wished he would take less) and 
frequently surprised me by the amount he knew about the 
Rhodes Scholars at his College. He was a kindly man, whose 
criticisms, if he had to make them, were without venom. He 
would not have allowed himself the comment which another 
Head once sent me, in his terminal report, on one of his Rhodes 
Scholars *no nicer than before'. 

The German Scholarships, like the American or Colonial, were 
tenable for three years; but, what with military service and 
State examinations, a young German could seldom afford more 
than two years for Oxford. Of the fifty-eight Germans who held 
Scholarships before the 1914-18 war only three stayed for a third 
year. The Trustees accordingly came to an agreement with the 
Kaiser that he should be allowed to nominate more than five 
Scholars a year, provided that there were never more than fifteen 
in residence at one time, and that those who accepted Scholar- 
ships stayed for at least two years. This latter condition was 



suggested by the fact that, of the first ten German Rliodes 
Scholars, three stayed for one year only; and one year (in practice 
probably no more than six months, for the Germans tended to 
go home in vacation) would have been almost useless so far as 
Rhodes's intentions were concerned especially as, certificates of 
proficiency notwithstanding, not all German Rhodes Scholars 
were sufficiently at home in the English language on their arrival 
to start at once getting, and giving, what they were meant to. 

For the Germans, staying normally for two years only, the 
Honour Schools and B.A. degree were ruled out; for, at that 
time, in order to get 'standing' under the Statute on Foreign 
Universities (either Senior or Junior) and thereby the privilege of 
getting a degree in two years, a German had actually to have 
taken a Doctorate at a German University, 1 and few of our 
German Rhodes Scholars were of an age to have done that. 
That being so, most of them read for the Diploma in Economics 
and Political Science, which satisfied academic claims, without 
overtaxing, or perhaps even extending, their capacities. Some of 
them, nevertheless, managed to fail in the examination, and not 
always because of difficulties with the English language. Between 
1905 and 1913, inclusive, thirty German Rhodes Scholars ob- 
tained the diploma, twelve of them 'with distinction'. Three 
took a B.Litt. degree. Others did special work in History, 
English Literature, Philosophy or Archaeology, without taking 
any examination. Only one took a Final Honour School, and 
he stayed for a third year in order to do so. 

After the top-hatted Germans came the half-dozen South 
Africans, singly, and without ceremony. Some of them were 
quite young, a good deal younger than most Rhodes Scholars 
now are. Two were only eighteen, another nineteen. I was to 
learn, however, and quickly, that a 'Colonial' 2 boy might be 
young and, in a sense, inexperienced and yet well able to look 

1 A plain Ph.D. gave him Junior Standing; a Ph.D. with honours Senior. 
2 'Colonial* is, of course, die term used in the Will. 


after himself. It was the above-nineteen-year-older who taught 
me that. He was from Rhodesia; knew little Latin and less 
Greek; but had spent days, and nights too, on the veldt with a 
gun, a book, a loaf of bread and a tin of sardines. When I gave 
him the first instalment of his cheque, amounting to ^75, 
reflecting that his veldt experiences would not have familiarized 
him with such things as cheques and bank accounts, I crossed his 
cheque for the bank at which the Trust account lay call it 
Bank A. Off he went and turned into the first bank he came to, 
which happened not to be Bank A call it Bank B. He presented 
his cheque and said that he wished to open an account. The clerk 
accepted the cheque and gave him a cheque book. In due course 
the cheque got back to Bank A, and there was trouble. I sent for 
my young Rhodesian and explained. *I can fix that', he said, and 
went happily off. He went to Bank B, returned the cheque book 
and had an interview with the clerk, who had no doubt heard 
things in the meantime from the manager. The conversation, as 
reported with evident satisfaction by the boy, ran as follows: 

Clerk. So you Rhodes Scholars are to be nursed, are you? You are 
to bank just where Mr. Wylie chooses? 

Young Rhodesian. Ought you to have accepted the cheque? 

Clerk. Well, not strictly perhaps. 

Young Rhodesian. Then perhaps the pot had better not call the kettle 

I no longer felt any anxiety as to this boy from the veldt being 
able to look after himself. 

1903 was an overture. The real performance began in 1904, 
when seventy-two Rhodes Scholars came into residence, twenty- 
four from the British Commonwealth, forty-three from the 
United States and five from Germany. In the preceding August 
I had married, and we had barely settled in at 9 South Parks Road 
when the overseas crowd began to arrive. Anyone who knows 
anything about the post of Oxford Secretary to the Rhodes 
Trustees knows that, on the social as distinct from the adminis- 


trative side, the Secretary's wife is, in sober reality, his 'better 
half. The late Warden of New College, H. A. L. Fisher, himself 
a Trustee, said to me once, apropos of a successor to myself, 'No 
one can be the right man for the job unless he has the right wife*. 
If therefore I make only this incidental reference to my marriage, 
that does not mean that it was anything less than a major event 
in the early history of the Scholarships. 

Seventy-nine Rhodes Scholars should have come up that 
October: but the South African College School made no election; 
Rhodesia could only produce one Scholar instead of three (and 
even he was not Rhodesia-educated) ; and in five of the American 
States no candidate survived the qualifying examination. On the 
other hand, we got an unexpected extra Canadian, who brought 
the total to seventy-two. Apart from this extra Canadian, the 
number of Scholars from Canada in this first batch of Rhodes 
Scholars was eight one each from the following: Ontario, 
Quebec, Manitoba, North-West Territory, British Columbia, 
Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island. In- 
deed, we got an extra Canadian. This came about as follows. 
Sir William Peterson, the forceful President of McGill Univer- 
sity, who was Chairman of the Rhodes Selection Committee, 
reported that there were two outstanding candidates for the 
Scholarship between whom the Committee could not distin- 
guish. Could McGill not have two Scholarships for that year? 
The Trustees were shocked. Set so dangerous a precedent in the 
very first year! No; let the Committee reconsider, and if 
necessary re-examine. Presently came a further message from 
Sir William: Committee still unable to distinguish. The Trustees 
were in a quandary. Give no Scholarship at all? Or surrender? 
They surrendered. Sir William got his two Scholarships. If that 
was bluff on his part, certainly the two Scholars backed him up 
handsomely. One of them 1 took a First both in Classical Modera- 
tions and in Literae Humaniores won the Ireland and ist Craven 
Scholarships, the Chancellor's Latin Essay and the Passmore 

1 H. J. Rose, F.B.A., now Professor of Greek at St. Andrews University. 


Edwards Scholarship, and was elected to a Fellowship at Exeter 
College. The other, 1 after a First in Literae Humaniores and a 
Second in Jurisprudence, went on to win what is still regarded 
by many as the blue ribbon of an Oxford career, a Fellowship at 
All Souls. On this showing, Oxford would not have found it 
much easier to distinguish between the two men than the Quebec 
Committee had. 

Nor were these two the only Rhodes Scholars of 1904 to win 
Fellowships. An Australian 2 did the same, after a no less distin- 
guished career. In his second year he entered for both the B.CX. 
examination and the Honour School of Jurisprudence (one paper 
in the ktter actually overlapping one in the former), and was in 
the First Class in both. That must be a unique record. Many 
have taken a First in both examinations, but not in the same year. 
He may even be said to have made history: for the Law faculty, 
thinking perhaps that this performance a little derogated from 
the dignity of so 'superior* a degree as the B.C.L., promoted 
legislation altering the conditions that govern the B.CX. exam- 
ination. Under Statute that examination now begins on the 
same day as the Jurisprudence School the Thursday in the 
seventh week of term. and the two run concurrently. No 
candidate to-day, however well equipped and agile, would think 
of challenging this Australian's 'record'. He was awarded, in 
addition, the Vinerian and Eldon Scholarships, and was elected 
first to a Lecturership, and in 1909 to a Fellowship, at University 

Three Fellowships for the Rhodes Scholars of one year, and 
that the first (or rather, to be exact, the first full) year ! We who 
were connected with the Trust began to preen ourselves. But 
presently we began to wonder too. What would Mr. Rhodes 
think of this? Was he sending his Scholars over here to crowd 
the Senior Common Rooms of Oxford? That was a pertinent 
question; and it did a little qualify our satisfaction. We need not 

1 John Archibald. 

*J. C. V. Behan (now Sir John Behan), late Warden of Trinity College, Melbourne, 
and Secretary for the Australian Rhodes Scholarships. 


have worried. It was eleven years before a Rhodes Scholar 1 was 
again elected to an Oxford Fellowship. 

Oxford Fellowships, however, are far from being the only 
openings that may tempt a man to stay over here. How far, 
many a Rhodes Scholar must have asked himself, is he under 
any obligation to go back to the community or country which 
may be said to have sent him here? Occasionally that question 
was put to me. All that I could find to say was that, while no one 
could read the "Will and not feel that the Founder was thinking 
of his Scholars as normally going back to the countries from 
which the Scholarships had drawn them, nothing, as it seemed 
to me, would be less in keeping with the spirit of Mr. Rhodes 
himself, or indeed of the Will, than that the development of 
his idea should be cramped by rules, or his Scholars held to any 
narrow reading of their obligations. 

The Americans stand outside this problem. The number of 
them who did not go back to their own country was negligible. 
But it may reasonably be asked what percentage of the 
742 Dominions Rhodes Scholars who came into residence in 
my time settled in England. No precise answer is possible 
because of movement. Rhodes Scholars are no less restless 
than other people, perhaps more so. Some who went home 
at first came back here later: more who seemed to be 
taking root here returned in the end to the country of their 
origin. A rough estimate would be 9 per cent. As to which I 
would make just two comments. First, that the percentage would 
have been slightly lower had it not been for the 1914-18 war, 
which for Rhodes Scholars who went to it from this country 
prolonged their absence from 'home' by something like five 
years, and meant that by the end of the war some of them had 
formed ties, sentimental or other, which influenced their decision: 
and secondly, that while the percentage may well be higher than 
Rhodes will have foreseen or wished, many of those who did 

1 P. E. Corbctt (Quebec, 1915), elected to a Fellowship at All Souls in 1920. 


stay over here have given service which would have won his 
approval, and which, in some cases, only staying here has made 

But it was not always because they remained in England that 
Rhodes Scholars did not go back to their original communities. 
Many found a career in some other part of the British Empire 
than that from which they sprang. As I look down the list of 
those that were in Oxford between 1903 and 1930 I find 

Canadians who either are or have been in India, Somaliland, 

and West Africa. 
Australians who either are or have been in India, the Sudan, 

Hong Kong, East Africa and New Zealand. 
South Africans (including Rhodesians) who either are or have 

been in India, East Africa, West Africa, Australia, Canada, 

Nyasaland, New Zealand and the Sudan. 
New Zealanders who either are or have been in India, East 

Africa, Somaliland, Canada and Australia. 
Bermudans who either are or have been in East Africa, Rhodesia, 

West Africa and Ceylon. 
Jamaicans who either are or have been in India, East Africa, 

Canada and West Africa. 
Newfoundlanders who either are or have been in South Africa 

and Canada. 

If the Founder 'turns in his grave* at that list it will be with 
pleasure, not in protest. No doubt he was of his generation in 
that, when he conceived of his scheme of imperial Scholarships, 
he was thinking primarily of ties to bind Colonies to mother- 
country and mother-country to Colonies. But the pattern of 
things has changed since 1899, and Mr. Rhodes's thought would 
have changed with it. It is difficult to believe that this criss-cross 
movement about the web of Empire would not have become 
as much part of his idea as movement between centre and 

For some years a good many people worried themselves (and 
others) over the number of Rhodes Scholars who were not going 


back to the places from which they had come; but before my 
term of office had come to an end I was hearing less of that. 
People were coming, it seemed to me, to take a larger view of 
the Scholarships, and to think of them less as a perquisite of a given 
community, by which it expected to benefit, and more as an 
opportunity given a selected man to equip himself for service 
which, it might be found, he could better render elsewhere than 
in the community which had selected him. 

From this digression I turn to say something of die Americans, 
forty-three of them, who came over in 1904. The bulk of them 
came as a party in the Ivernia, giving heart to each other. I was 
told a story at the time, for the accuracy of which I cannot vouch, 
that in the course of the voyage one of the party made a speech, 
in which he dwelt on their responsibility as Americans, and 
suggested that they should be careful to preserve, against the 
influences of this alien society, their distinctive American charac- 
ter. Whether this story be true or not in fact, there is truth of 
idea in it, for it suggests something which probably did lie, 
however dimly, at the back of the minds of at least a few of the 
Americans of the early years a kind of Americanism-on-the- 
defensive, understandable but unhelpful. On the other hand, it 
was difficult for them to know just how much of reserve or its 
opposite was expected of them. It was easy to do the wrong 
thing; as one of them discovered on his first evening in College. 
Going into Hall, and seeing a group of men (seniors probably, 
but how was he to know that?) standing in front of the fire, he 
went up to them, and with the instinctive and, one might have 
hoped, disarming friendliness of a middle-Westerner, introduced 
himself 'My name's Blodgett'. 1 Whether English reserve or 
third-year dignity was the more offended is anybody's guess : but 
it was plain to Blodgett that he had blundered. Fortunately, he 
was of a large and generous nature, and it would have taken more 
than that to upset him. It is difficult for us to-day to realize how 

1 1 heard this story at the time. Blodgett is not a pseudonym. He is dead. 


unknown a world it was into which those early Americans were 
venturing fifty years ago. Since then some two thousand Ameri- 
can students, Rhodes Scholars and others, have passed through 
Oxford and gone home, taking with them their Oxford experi- 
ences and Oxford stories, and leaving behind them each his own 
small contribution towards an Oxford understanding of Ameri- 
cans and American ways. More than that, two wars have thrown 
Englishmen and Americans together in their hundreds, not to say 
their thousands. Each side knows now a deal about the other. 
It was not so in 1904. The pioneers of that and the other pre-war 
years were coining into an unfamiliar and unhomelike world, in 
which it would be all too easy to feel lost and lonely. In a recent 
letter a Rhodes Scholar of that time tells me that, in looking 
through old letters of his mother, he has come across some from 
himself from Oxford. 1 had forgotten', he says, 'how lonely 
and homesick I was.' No one would have guessed it. Which 
has a certain pathetic significance, as suggesting that others, per- 
haps many, may have been feeling equally lonely and homesick' 
without any of us guessing it. It is to be hoped that they, too, 
have 'forgotten'. 

I discovered one day that the mere age of Oxford could 
bewilder and oppress. It was not long after the start of the 
Scholarships that a Rhodes Scholar from one of the newer parts 
of the world came to see me. He must resign his Scholarship, 
he said, and go back where he belonged. Everything in Oxford 
was too old. He had not been in the place more than a week. 
He was persuaded to give antiquity a longer trial; and did actually 
last out his three years. I wish I could think he enjoyed them. 

A feeling of loneliness and homesickness was no doubt one 
reason why the Americans lost no time in starting a club. It was 
an ambitious affair: rented rooms in the Corn; had comfortable 
armchairs; served tea daily. A good deal may be said in favour 
of the Americans having some sort of club in Oxford. But that 
sort of club at that time was, I thought and still think, a mistake. 
It was too tempting a refuge. If one was feeling shy, if one's first 
efforts at friendliness had broken against some Englishman's own 


shyness or reserve, if one's rooms were cheerless, or one's tutor 
unsympathetic why, there was always that armchair awaiting 
one in the Corn, with one's College pennant on the wall above, 
and very likely another homesick American in a chair near by. 

However, after a few years of comfort, but also of increasing 
financial embarrassment, the rooms in the Corn were given up. 
The club became 'modester and modester'. For some years before 
it died (as it did about 1927) it met- no oftener than once a fort- 
night, in rooms hired for the evening. Even this gave occasion 
for misunderstanding. Even so sincere a well-wisher as the 
sometime Provost of Oriel, L. R. Phelps, could get wrong about 
it. He crossed the street one day on purpose to say to me (or was 
it to his beard?) : 'I like your Americans, but I wish they wouldn't 
spend so much time in that club of yours club of theirs, I mean'. 
I explained that the club met no oftener than four times a term, 
and that the room was by no means always crowded. He bade 
me a hurried good-bye, leaving me with the feeling that he would 
never get it out of his head that Mr. Rhodes's intentions were 
being thwarted by this insidious American meeting-place. 

But this talk of homesickness is in danger of distorting the 
picture. If a sense of loneliness was a real part of the total experi- 
ence of some, perhaps even of many, of the early Rhodes 
Scholars, whether American or Colonial, it was rarely, if ever, 
more than a minor part. Sooner or later the friendly intimacy of 
College life warmed it away. It may be that, in those first years, 
it took a Rhodes Scholar longer to grow to Oxford and feel at 
home there than it has taken his post-war successors. But, 
however that may be, I know enough of that generation of 
Scholars to be confident that, taken as a whole, no body of men 
could have happier memories of Oxford, or a warmer feeling for 
it, than they have. 

Of course, most Rhodes Scholars were older, by two years or 
more, than the English undergraduate normally is, and this made 
readjustment all the harder. It cannot have been easy for a man 
who had been a senior at a University in the Dominions or 
United States, and enjoyed probably a good deal of freedom and 


importance, to find himself once more a freshman and treated 
as such. It made demands on his sense of humour. Normally 
that stood the strain. But not always. A Rhodes Scholar came 
to see me one day, noisily indignant. He had been 'gated' or fined 
(I forget -which) for some breach of College regulations. I tried 
to get him to laugh at the whole tiling, at the rule and at himself. 
Not he ! He left, still flushed and indignant. As he reached the 
door he flung a parting shot: 'That's the sort of thing that lost 
us the American Colonies: and the same thing may happen again 9 . 
But that story must be balanced by another, equally true. A 
Rhodes Scholar an American this time whom we will call 
R.B. arrived at a College at which it was the custom for the 
Dean to post at the Lodge a list of the freshmen who were to report 
at the Old Clarendon Building in the Broad at a given hour on a 
given day, to be presented by him to the Vice-Chancellor for mat- 
riculation. R.B.'s name was called in due course, and called again. 
No one answered. R.B., having seen no notice, was absent from 
parade. Arrived back at College, the Dean sent for R.B. and 
'told him off'. C I couldn't get a word in edgeways*, said R.B* 
when he told me the story (and he enjoyed the telling of it). The 
Dean, an ex-Colonel of the Guards, finished up by saying, in 
effect if not in these words, 'Now I shall have to make a special 
appointment with the Vice-Chancellor for the sole purpose of 
matriculating you. Will it be enough this time if I put up a 
notice, or must I send for you?* 'I think, Sir*, said the freshman, 
'you had better send and send a perambulator. 9 It is said that 
thereafter things were all right between Dean and freshman. So 
splendid a solvent is a sense of humour, whether you happen to 
be the freshman or the Dean. 



IN November 1904 Lord Rosebery was the chief guest at a 
dinner given by the Oxford Colonial Club, at which the 
Rector of Exeter (Dr. Jackson) was in the Chair, and the Vice- 
Chancellor (Dr. Merry) a guest. "With Lord Rosebery's dictum 
'Rhodes has done his share; it is for others now* still in my 
ears, it was with amused surprise that I heard him say, in the 
course of his speech that evening, that, speaking for himself, he 
was convinced that 'if it was found that Oxford was pinched, 
hampered or embarrassed by this sudden influx of new blood, 
this new wine put into old bottles, the Rhodes Trustees would 
endeavour to adjust that transition'. 1 The Vice-Chancellor, who 
followed Lord Rosebery, did his best, in his own genial way, to 
pin Lord Rosebery down to this unexpected offer of assistance 
by thanking him for having saved him, the Vice-Chancellor, 
from having himself to suggest 'in the subtlest possible manner* 
that if the Trustees should be contemplating giving help to the 
University, there would be no opposition on the part of the 
University. 2 Hawksley told me subsequently that at the next 
meeting of the Board there had been some protest (mainly, it 
appears, on the part of Lord Grey) against Lord Rosebery having 
come so near committing the Trustees to a 'grant in aid' : to which 
Lord Rosebery had retorted that they had not read his speech, 
or had misread it. The Times was sent for, and read out. 'That', 
said Lord Rosebery, *only shows how easy it is, once you are on 
your legs, to say more than you had meant to.* That from 
England's most practised orator! It would seem then that, at 
that date, Rhodes Trust policy was better represented by Lord 

1 The Times, November 15, 1904. 

* Oxford Magazine, November 15, 1904. 



Rosebery's dictum than by the casual generosity of his after- 
dinner speech. 

Lord Rosebery's reference to the possibility that 'this influx of 
new blood' might put a strain upon the resources of the Univer- 
sity, raises a point on which I may perhaps be allowed to digress. 
Were there fields of study in which these overseas students, even 
in the earlier years of the invasion, were already making new 
demands upon the University? One certainly there was that of 
Law. Before the advent of Rhodes Scholars, Oxford Law stu- 
dents had not been in the habit of reading for the advanced 
degree of B.C.L. in Oxford. They had, normally, left Oxford 
after taking their B.A., and read for the B.C.L. examination in 
London, returning to Oxford only to be examined. But now 
here were these Rhodes Scholars, tied to Oxford by the condi- 
tions of their Scholarships, but claiming, as graduates from 
elsewhere, the right under Oxford Statutes to 'occupy themselves 
for two years at the least 1 in hearing lectures or otherwise in the 
study of Law under the supervision of die Board' : and yet, so 
far, there were c no lectures or systematic teaching of several 
topics prescribed for the B.C.L. examination*. Nor were all 
Oxford Law Tutors prepared to undertake the extra teaching 
involved. It did look as though in this field Rhodes Scholars 
were helping to create a new demand. Certainly the Board of 
Faculty of Law thought so. A Memorandum, drawn up by the 
Chairman of the Board, and submitted to the Rhodes Trustees 
in 1908 from which I have just quoted begins as follows: 'The 
Board of Faculty of Law has been forced to the conclusion that 
under present conditions the teaching of subjects prescribed for 
the B.C.L. examination is inadequate. The admission of so many 
Rhodes Scholars to that examination is in the opinion of the 
Board responsible for the present difficulties/ That is putting it 
pretty straight ! Attention is drawn to the fact that of twenty 

1 The text of the Memorandum from which I am quoting says *eight terms at least'; 
but, as the academic year was at that time divided into four terms, eight terms meant 
two years. 


students who were that year engaged in the two years' course 
preparatory to the B.C.L. examination, fifteen were Rhodes 
Scholars, while of the other five, four were Indians and one an 
American, though not a Rhodes Scholar. It might also have 
been mentioned that in the preceding year (190?) of eight 
candidates who had succeeded in getting 'classed* in the B.C.L. 
examination six had been Rhodes Scholars. The Rhodes 
Trustees, when this Memorandum was first submitted to them, 
regretted that they were not at the moment in a position to offer 
the help asked of them. Some months later, however, on receipt 
of an appeal from the Vice-Chancellor, they undertook to 
contribute 200 a year towards a Lecturership in English Law. 
It would, I think, be agreed by many, if not most, of the older 
generation of Oxford Law teachers that the Rhodes Scholars, so 
many of whom read for either the Honour School of Juris- 
prudence or the B.C.L., or both, did do much, in the years 
between, say, 1904 and 1929, to quicken the Oxford Law School. 
The late Dr. Stallybrass of Brasenose, himself a leading Oxford 
teacher of Law, once said to me that in his opinion the Rhodes 
Scholars had raised the standard of the study of Law in Oxford. 
Professor de Zulueta writes to me: 1 agree with what Stallybrass 
said'. On the other hand, Sir John Miles, whose experience of 
teaching Law in Oxford covers fifty years, will only subscribe to 
Stallybrass's dictum if that is limited to *the second and third 
classes in the Law School', 

So much for Law. But Law was not the only field in which, 
it began to be seen, the arrival of Rhodes Scholars might mean 
a new, or at any rate an enlarged, demand. In 1 895 the University 
had established two new degrees for 'advanced work' a B.Litt. 
and a B.Sc. Hitherto these degrees had languished in semi- 
obscurity. Now it seemed there might be a run upon them. 
Overseas students especially, at first, Americans who had taken 
a degree before coming to Oxford, were tempted to think that 
they ought to be allowed to read for these so-called 'Research' 


degrees. It was unfortunate, of course, that they were Bachelor 
degrees, and so of limited market-value outside Oxford: but they 
were better than nothing. It turned out, however, that there were 
difficulties. Candidates for these degrees were expected 

(1) to have had a thorough grounding in the general field 
within which their special subject would fall, and 

(2) to be competent to carry on their work by themselves, 
with only general direction or advice not 'instruction' 
from a 'supervisor'. 

Unfortunately, at that time, only a few Rhodes Scholars could 
satisfy those conditions. The result was disappointment and 
friction. Tutors complained that men who needed just what the 
Honour Schools would give them wished to side-step these and 
embark on advanced work for which they had had no adequate 
preparation: and Rhodes Scholars complained that Oxford 
offered no preliminary training for graduate work such as they 
might have got 'at home'. I heard a deal about this, from both 
sides, in those earlier years. A man turned up at my house one 
day who had been accepted as a candidate for a B.Litt. degree. 
He told me, with a mixture of amusement and perplexity, that 
his supervisor, with whom he had just had his first interview, 
had assured him that he knew 'next to nothing' about his subject, 
but would be delighted to see him from time to time and 'have 
a chat about it'. I explained that this was just Oxford dpcovaoc, 
and that he would probably find that his supervisor knew quite 
enough about the subject to give him all the help he ought to 
need. This incident, with allowance for exaggeration in its telling, 
does illustrate, not unfairly, the way in which Oxford at that 
time tended to interpret the relation of candidate and supervisor. 
It was all so new. There had been no time as yet for uniform 
standards to have established themselves, either as to what should 
be expected of candidates for these BXitt. and B.Sc. degrees, or 
as to how much help ought to be given them. 

It emerges, however, from this digression and that must be 
its excuse that both in the Faculty of Law and in the Faculties of 


Arts and Science there was a new and growing demand for the 
encouragement of advanced study, with which Rhodes Scholars 
had much to do. In the Faculty of Law this 'embarrassment', to 
use Lord Rosebery's word, was admitted, and even advertised. 
In the other Faculties it amounted to no more than a threat. But 
it was a writing on the wall. Oxford was approaching a time 
when she would be obliged to recognize, more than she had so 
far done, the demand for opportunities of post-graduate study, 
to encourage it, and to organize it. No doubt all this lay, in any 
event, in Oxford's future, but it might have lain dormant there 
for some time longer had not these graduates from overseas 
Universities arrived just then to quicken its awakening. 

By 1907 we were settling down to routine. A Rhodes Scholar 
was ceasing to be a curiosity: he was dropping into his place as 
an ordinary undergraduate of his College. But not a 'scholar' 
of his College. A Rhodes Scholar is not elected by his College, 
nor is he paid by it. He is not 'on the Foundation': and does not 
(except, in my time, at one College) wear the 'scholar's gown', 
unless awarded that in recognition of some academic distinction 
won by him. He is, for the College, a 'commoner'. Trivial and 
academic as that distinction may be, it did twice in the earlier 
years become, for the moment, almost important. In 1909 a boy 
was elected to a Rhodes Scholarship who had already won an 
open scholarship at Merton. The College felt, not perhaps 
unnaturally, that a boy already in receipt of a Scholarship worth 
^300 a year was not the sort of person for whom a College 
scholarship was intended, and wrote to tell me so, thinking, or 
perhaps rather hoping, that the Rhodes Trustees might do some- 
thing about it. I could only reply that, as there was no means 
test for a Rhodes Scholarship any more than there was for a 
College open scholarship, the Trustees had no power, even had 
they the wish, to make the winning of another Scholarship a 
ground for reducing the value of their own. By an odd coinci- 
dence a similar point cropped up within the next few months. 


Dean of Christ Church 

(Ontario and Christ Church, 1922) 

Trustee since 1940 


General Secretary, 1921-1922 

Trustee, 1925-1944 


A Rhodes Scholar who was already at Balliol entered his name 
for a College Mathematical scholarship. The College felt as 
Merton had, and in their turn wrote to tell me so. I replied, after 
communicating with Lord Milner, that the Trustees regarded 
this as something in which decision must be left to the Scholar 
himself. For the moment it looked as though, just as Merton had 
been unable to deprive, so Balliol were going to find it, if not 
impossible, at least difficult not to elect, should this candidate 
turn out to be inconveniently good. From this quandary the 
Scholar himself extricated them by letting them know that he 
did not need, and, if elected, would not claim the money. He 
was elected; and was promoted to the scholar's gown. This 
particular difficulty could not arise often, for the age by which 
College open scholarships had to be won practically ruled over- 
seas Rhodes Scholars out. The three who did in my time win 
open scholarships before being elected to a Rhodes Scholarship 1 
had all, as it happened, been at schools in England, and won their 
scholarships while still at school 

Now that there is a means test for open scholarships, College 
scruples will not be strained as those of Merton and Balliol were. 
Those scruples were neither fanciful nor ungenerous. Colleges 
administer 'charitable* endowments, and are justified in being 
concerned that these should be used as they were meant to be. 
But the Rhodes Trustees are not administering a 'charity' in 
quite the same sense: and they have preached consistently that, of 
two candidates, the poorer has no greater claim on the Scholar- 
ship than the better-to-do. The sole consideration was to be the 
relative ability of the two to make the best use of the opportunity 
which the Scholarship offers: and from that point of view some 
means over and above the Scholarship is all to the good. At no 
time in my experience could a Rhodes Scholar, who had nothing 
to draw on beyond his Scholarship, do more than 'scrape 
through', with greater or less strain according to his College and 

1 R. L. (now Sir Richard) Nosworthy, K.C.M.G. (Jamaica, 1905); 
E. J. (now Sir John) Waddington, K.C.M.G., K.C.V.O., G.B.E. (Bermuda, 1909); 
C. M. Coke (originally Isaacs), Tanganyika Administrative Service. Died September, 
1948 Qamaica, 1920). 


his tastes. Certainly to me, sadly familiar with the financial 
embarrassments of so many of the Scholars, it was nothing but 
relief to hear that one of them was getting something extra. I 
knew enough not to be frightened by the bogy of 'extravagance*. 

It was in June of 1907 that Lord Rosebery came, as Senior 
Rhodes Trustee, to unveil the tablet which had been put up in 
the Examination Schools to commemorate the foundation of the 
Rhodes Scholarships. He was officially welcomed in the South 
Room of the Schools by the Vice-Chancellor, Warren of 
Magdalen, who enjoyed such functions or was supposed to and 
did them well. Lord Rosebery began his address by expressing 
his regret that the tablet had been placed in 'the palace which 
you have erected for the purposes of examination' and not in 
the old Schools 'where (no doubt) Mr. Rhodes was examined 
in his time'. That was an engaging bit of sentiment; but, if tablets 
are put up to be looked at, scarcely in place in this context. 
Seldom as it may be that an undergraduate, hurrying to his 
ordeal up the great staircase of the Schools, has time or thought 
for the tablet at its foot, at least he has to pass it, both going and 
coming. In the old Schools it would not have had even that 
chance of catching someone's eye. 1 Lord Rosebery told us of 
Mr. Rhodes saying to him of his Will, 'It is the pleasantest 
companion I have'; and of how he would say, of the slander and 
abuse with which he was pelted, *All this doesn't worry me in the 
least, I have my Will here' as if, said Lord Rosebery, it had 
been in his breast pocket. He ended by saying that the Founder's 
noblest monument in Oxford would be 'the career, the merits 
and the reputation of the Scholars whom he has summoned 
within these walls'. A move was then made to the tablet, which 
Lord Rosebery unveiled, to the applause of such members of the 
University, senior or junior, as could squeeze themselves into 
the passage in which the tablet had been placed, or find a footing 

1 It might be different to-day, but Lord Rosebery was speaking some forty years ago, 
before the old Schools came once more to life. 


on the steps above. It was an untidy finish to a function that had 
begun with order and dignity. 

A more startling event in that year than Rosebery unveiling a 
tablet was the election of a negro to an American Rhodes 
Scholarship. It was the Pennsylvania Selection Committee who 
took this unexpected step. When the news reached Oxford, the 
Rhodes Scholars who were from southern States were dumb- 
founded. As opinion was in the southern States in 1907, the 
election of a negro to membership of what Rhodes Scholars 
were being urged to regard as a 'Society*, almost a 'Brotherhood*, 
was bound to come as a shock, an offence even, to any Southerner. 
They met in protest. There was, I believe, some loose talk about 
resigning Scholarships. They appointed one of themselves to go 
to London to interview the Trustees, who might, it was hoped, 
be willing to cancel the appointment. A vain hope. He was 
sympathetically received, but was reminded that there was plenty 
of 'colour* in the British Empire; and no British subject was 
going to be debarred from a Rhodes Scholarship on that ground. 
There was nothing in the Will to justify any such action. On 
the contrary, the Founder had said that no one was to be 'qualified 
or disqualified on account of his race or religious opinions', and 
it was at least arguable that 'race' covered 'colour*. The Penn- 
sylvania Committee were within their rights in nominating as 
they had, and the Trustees had no intention of interfering. 1 That 
was definite. No one resigned his Scholarship; probably no one 
had seriously thought of doing so. But the concern of these 
Southerners was no pose. They were genuinely troubled. And 
perhaps we shall better understand their attitude if we remind 
ourselves that, only a few years before, the President of the 
United States himself, Theodore Roosevelt, had brought a storm 
about his head, and endangered his popularity, by asking a negro 
to a meal at the White House, though the negro in question was 

1 The question of the eligibility of negroes to a Rhodes Scholarship had been raised 
in more than one State as early as 1904. The Trustees had 'strongly and unanimously' 
affirmed that they would not interfere with the discretion of Committees. 


no other than the late Mr. Booker Washington. Certainly, in 
1907 it was a bold experiment, something of a challenge even, 
to elect a negro to an American Rhodes Scholarship. A good 
many people at the time questioned its wisdom; and some, later, 
its success. What is incontestable is that, in the forty-two years 
that have passed since the negro in question Vent down', he has 
done notable work among his own people, both as teacher and 
as writer. 

In November 1907 W. T. Stead of the Revieiv of Reviews came 
one evening to Oxford to talk to the Rhodes Scholars about the 
Founder and his ideas. On that subject no one had a better right 
to speak: for, strange as many have found it, it is unquestionable 
that Mr. Rhodes opened his mind more freely to Stead than to 
anyone else. He spoke of Rhodes with an emotion which he had 
difficulty in controlling, bringing to one's mind something which 
he had said in his book. 1 He there tells us that in April 1900, the 
Boer War being at its height, Mr. Rhodes said to him, 'Now I 
want you to understand that if in future you should unfortunately 
feel yourself compelled to attack me personally as vehemently 
as you have attacked my policy in this war, it will make no 
difference to our friendship. I am too grateful to you for all I 
have learned from you to allow anything that you may write or 
say to make any change in our relations/ 'And yet', Stead goes 
on, 'men wonder that I loved him, and love him still.' Yes, he 
made that plain at our meeting. Rhodes Scholars who were 
present, and many were, are not likely to have forgotten the 
evening. They may not remember the words, but they will the 
man. With his grey beard and inspired gaze he had something 
of the Hebrew prophet about him. And perhaps when he 
removed him from the list of his executors the Founder felt that 
the prophet had done his work, and should make way for the 

# # # 

1 The Last Will and Testament of Cecil Jahtt Rhodes, p. 112. 


In 1908 there came into residence a Rhodes Scholar from 
Rhodesia of whom, as the first Rhodes Scholar to appear in the 
Dictionary of National Biography, it may be not inappropriate to 
say something here. He was bom in 1885. At the age of eleven 
he was taken from School in Grahamstown, Cape Colony, to 
Rhodesia, where his father was a surveyor. There he started to 
idle. His father gave him the choice of either going back to 
school in Grahamstown or staying in Rhodesia and working. He 
chose the latter, *in about a second'. An old wagon with a tent 
on the top served at once as office (below) and sleeping quarters 
(above). There Kingsley Fairbridge settled down, not yet twelve, 
to help his father. He came to know the veldt well, its dangers 
and its charm. He was never without his rifle. When he was 
twelve an idea came to him he calls it a vision. He would bring 
farmers from England to fill Rhodesia's empty spaces. 'Homes, 
more homes/ The idea took possession of him. Meanwhile, 
besides helping his father, he turned his hand to other things & 
stool in a bank, market-gardening, journalism but to nothing 
for long. He read, 'at times voraciously*; he wrote verses. 1 Still, 
and all the time, a son of the veldt. At the age of eighteen he 
came to England on a visit. That visit, and what he saw in the 
course of it, changed the form of his idea. That was still the 
peopling of Rhodesia's open spaces: but he would not, now, 
bring out grown men or grown women, but children, unsoiled 
by life, that they might grow up in the clean air, and be trained 
for the clean life, of Rhodesia. Back in Rhodesia he brooded over 
this idea. Somehow he must get back to England. But how? A 
Rhodes Scholarship ? He was promised one if he passed Respon- 
sions. Getting together what money he could, he came to 
England in 1907, passed Responsions at the fourth attempt, and 
in October 1908 matriculated at Exeter College as a Rhodes 
Scholar. He was twenty-three. At Oxford he made friends, 
played games, won his 'Blue* for boxing, read for a Diploma in 
Forestry (which he succeeded in getting) and founded at a 
meeting of the Colonial Club, in October 1909, the 'Child 

1 Veldt Verses were published by David Nutt in 1909. 


Emigration Society'. Helped by a grant from the Rhodes 
Trustees, he spent a year, after 'going down', in speaking and 
writing on behalf of his Society. Rhodesia had been given up 
as unsuitable for an experiment such as he was contemplating, 
and it was to Western Australia that, in 1912, he went out to 
start, at Pinjarra, the first Fairbridge Farm School. There, worn 
out at thirty-nine, he died. His name survives in the Farm Schools 
called after him, and in the Fairbridge Memorial College in 
Rhodesia. His life story can be told in skeleton form: a large 
unselfish project conceived in early life and brooded over in 
silence over the years; the means for carrying it out secured by 
degrees and in the face of difficulties; the project realized, at least 
in part; an early death, leaving 'so much to do*. What is this but 
Rhodes's own life story, writ small? 


THE years went quietly by. The summer term of 1914 drew 
to its close. There may have been those, even in Oxford, 
who saw what was coming; but, so far as I can recall, 'Comrnem.' 
was as gay, Lord's and Henley as crowded, as ever. Rhodes 
Scholars had scattered for the vacation, many of them to the 
Continent for those were the days of cheap 'pensions* and 
unrestricted travel. Seventy-three new Scholars were due to 
arrive in October forty-seven from the United States, twenty- 
six from the Dominions. Then suddenly it was war. 

I was deluged with letters and telegrams asking for information 
or advice. It was not easy to give either. The University itself 
was hesitating; might even decide to shut down. After all, this 
was the first time that either Colleges or University had had to 
face total war. The Boer War had scarcely scratched the surface 
of Oxford's life, and had left no lessons. It is not surprising that 
there was uncertainty and hesitation. Meanwhile, there were my 
letters and telegrams, demanding answers. The Americans were 
the problem. The war would claim most of the Dominions 
Scholars: but America was not in the war, nor very likely to be, 
so far as one could then see. Should the American Rhodes 
Scholars, more particularly the forty-seven new ones, be dis- 
couraged from coming? Or actually forbidden to do so? Or, if 
the University was proposing to carry on *as usual*, should they 
even be encouraged to come? 

I was in continuous communication with Lord Milner. On 
August 6th, in reply to a letter from me, he wrote suggesting 
that I should leave the decision to the Scholars themselves 'and 
not give them a lead'. On the I3th he wrote: 'Personally, taking 
as I do a rather grave view of the probable duration and severity 
of the war, I think ... in the interest of the Scholars themselves 


104 WAR 

it would be better to defer. Still, I don't think it is our business 
to give them a lead in that respect.' Again, on September 5th, 
with special reference to the Americans: *On the whole I think 
that, if Oxford decides to go on a course of the wisdom of 
which I am doubtful it would not do for us to work against 
the decision of the University authorities by gratuitously advising 
our Scholars not to come.' He did, however, suggest that, if 
they asked for advice, it would be well to point out how little 
Oxford, under war conditions, would be like the Oxford they 
might be expecting to find. He ended by saying: 1 did at one 
time lean to taking a more decided line against their coming, 
but as I am really left to run the Trust almost alone at present, 
I do not like to take the responsibility of so strong a course, 
especially as Parkin, whom I consulted, leans against advising the 
Scholars not to come. He thinks, and there may be some force 
in it, that it would create a bad impression on the other side/ 
This correspondence is interesting as showing how worried and 
divided in mind anyone could be (even a Milner!) who had 
decisions to make in the first few weeks of the first total war. 

So the Americans were allowed to come up; and did so, setting 
themselves to get what they could out of Oxford as it was. A 
number of them tried also, so far as that was consistent with 
President Woodrow Wilson's request for personal neutrality, to 
make some contribution themselves to the war effort to which 
they found themselves now so close. This took various forms, 
and was for varying periods. Belgian Relief took nineteen; the 
American ambulance in France eighteen; Y.M.CJL work with 
troops six; the Red Cross two. One of the two who were in 
Red Cross work went to Serbia. This was W. C. Davison, 
1913 New York Scholar. At one moment it seemed that Serbia 
was going to get several more; but a letter from Davison gave so 
appalling an account of conditions there ('they are dying of 
typhus at the rate of considerably over a thousand a day') that 
I consulted Sir William Osier. 1 should advise strong dissuasion', 
was his reply. I passed this on to the Colleges concerned, and the 
volunteers for Serbia were 'dissuaded' if that is an adequate word 


for the pressure brought to bear on them from challenging the 

These activities were all useful, and gave those who took part 
in them an experience which to some extent made up to them 
for what they were missing in wartime Oxford: but by the time 
it was all over I had come to feel that Milner had been right when 
he questioned the wisdom of having the Americans over while 
the country was at war. In saying that, I have only die Scholars 
in mind. Colleges, and perhaps the University, may have been 
glad to have them here, to help to keep the machinery running. 
But, for the Scholars themselves, it was a restless and unsatisfying 
time. They could hardly help feeling themselves out of place 
among a people so desperately at war. Sometimes a passer-by 
would let them see that he thought them so. The very ambulances 
as they went down the High could look reproach. Some did 
succeed in escaping from die war by concentrating on their 
work; but others, probably most, found conditions too distract- 
ing. For nearly all it must have been a struggle, subconscious, 
perhaps, but persistent, against a sense of frustration and dis- 
illusionment. It was all, as Milner had feared it would be, so 
unlike what they had expected. To many, the American entry 
into the war came as a relief. Two of them showed their relief 
by at once joining the R.C.A., from which they transferred later 
to their own Field Artillery. Actually, there was already one 
former American Rhodes Scholar, W. A. Fleet (Virginia, 1904), 
in the British army, with which he was still serving when he 
was killed in action in May 1918. Perhaps that will justify a few 
words about him here. He belonged to the first American con- 
tingent, and came up to Magdalen in October 1904. He was 
nearly twenty-one, but looked younger. He had a frank and 
boyish, I feel inclined to say a guileless, face. But there was 
nothing soft about him. He played kwn tennis for the Univer- 
sity and Rugby football for the College. He was not a great 
Scholar, but he got a Third Class in Classical Honour Moderations. 
It was impossible not to like him. Nor could you take him for 
anything but what he was, a fine Southern gentleman. 


His tutor at Magdalen, the late Christopher Cookson, told me 
the following story about him. Cookson and Fleet had gone to 
Italy together one vacation, and were lunching one day in a 
restaurant when a large and, in other ways too, rather noticeable 
American came in and sat down some little way from them. 
Presently the newcomer began to attract attention to himself by 
his manner and language. Fleet got more and more restive; 
and, when Cookson and he got up to go, he went over to the 
stranger's table and said (I give it as nearly as I can in Cookson's 
words) : 'Sir, I am an American too, and I beg you not to bring 
discredit on our people'. The "astonished American replied: 
'Young man, I am not accustomed to being spoken to in that 
way. But you seem to mean well. Good day.' That was all. 
But those of us who knew Fleet will realize what it must have 
cost his sensitive nature to do anything like that in a public place. 
Cookson certainly realized it, for he said to him so he told me 
*Well, Fleet, I know a lot of fine young Englishmen, but I doubt 
if many of them would have done what you have just done*. 
This incident and the generous impulse that sent him to fight for 
England while America was still standing out show what manner 
of man 'Billy Fleet' was. 

By 1916 Fleet, who was teaching at Culver Military Academy, 
had earned a Sabbatical year. He decided to spend it in fighting 
for the Allies, and more particularly for England. There may 
have been contributory motives there usually are: but his 
friends will not find it difficult to believe that the dominant one 
was a chivalrous desire to come to the help of the country which 
held so large a place in his affections, and which was in trouble. 
Somehow and what 'grandfather clause* was found useful I 
never discovered he secured a commission in the Grenadier 
Guards, and was with them when he was killed, in 1918. 

The war raised one question in which some Rhodes Scholars 
showed a lively interest. Was the rule that marriage forfeited the 
Scholarship to be enforced in wartime? Yes, said the Trustees. 


Possibly, had it been known how long the war was going to last, 
the answer might have been different.. But that was not known; 
and the answer first given held throughout the war. .For all that, 
some of the Scholars decided, or were induced, to take the plunge 
and 'damn the consequences*. The war over, there they were, 
with wives, and in some cases children. What was to be done 
about them? The Trustees, bearing in mind that they had married 
while it was still uncertain for how many more years war might 
postpone their marriages, if indeed it permitted them at all, ruled 
that they should be allowed to take up, or resume, their Scholar- 
ships. But this concession was to be limited to those who were 
already married. The war was over, and a Scholar could now see 
just how long it would be before he could marry. It was for him 
(or at any rate not for the Trustees) to decide whether the 
Scholarship, or such part of it as might still be due to him, was 
worth the wait. 

There were heart-burnings over this. One promising Scholar, 
who had been told during the war (in which he got the MLC.) 
that he could not marry without loss of his Scholarship, came 
back to Oxford to find other Rhodes Scholars enjoying both 
Scholarships and wives. After two terms he threw up his Scholar- 
ship and went 'back under', embittered. So much so that when, 
many years later, I was in his part of the world he did his best 
not to see me. I got round that by going to see him, and before 
I left the hatchet had been pretty well buried. A year or two 
later, when the Trustees made him a grant to enable him to come 
to Oxford for a year of special work, the hatchet was buried 
completely, and for good and all. I doubt if the Trustees ever 
spent money to better purpose. 

Another Rhodes Scholar, coming back from the war un- 
married, decided to call the Trustees* bluff. He married; told the 
Trustees that he had done so; and developed, for their benefit, 
his view of the case. When he found that the Trustees held the 
cards, he accepted defeat with unresenting philosophy. It was 
only with difficulty, and domestic inconvenience, that he lasted 
out his time. But he did; and took a high 'class 5 in Schools. 

108 WAR 

Whereon the Trustees, holding that he had 'played the game', 
made him an unsolicited grant of part of the Scholarship which 
he had forfeited. And this time, too, I think they cast their bread 
upon the waters wisely. 

It was a distracted life these married Rhodes Scholars lived, 
torn, as they were bound to be, between the rival claims of wife, 
Schools and College. They could satisfy any two of these; but 
not, to the full, all three. I remember meeting one of them 
wheeling a perambulator down one of Oxford's dreariest streets, 
his wife being busy with a second baby. He was a first-rate man, 
and did in fact get a First: but, beyond an occasional game of 
football, he could seldom escape from his student-nursemaid 
existence. I felt glad that Mr. Rhodes could not see that 'pram'. 

There were amusing incidents among the grim ones of the 
war. There was the Rhodes Scholar who, having been refused a 
visa for France, got there all the same, via Italy (or was it Spain?). 
It needed all Parkin's tact and influence to rescue him from angry 
governments. There was that other Scholar who, while doing 
useful work in Egypt, allowed himself so much freedom of 
speech that he was told, politely or otherwise, to get back to 
America and stay there. And there were the three 'innocents' 
who chose one vacation to wander along the Irish coast, with 
cameras and some rather awkward names, and were surprised, 
and in the end a little alarmed, by the interest the police seemed 
to be taking in them. They would have been still more con- 
cerned had they known what careful inquiries were being made 
about them in Oxford and elsewhere. 

One incident of that time gave us some concern. A South 
African of Dutch stock, elected to a Scholarship, was accepted 
provisionally by Exeter College. He had not volunteered for the 
war; and the Rector of Exeter, when writing to tell him that the 
College was prepared to consider his application, enlarged upon 
what, as he saw it, a Rhodes Scholar's attitude should be vis-a-vis 
the British Empire and the war. Those of us who remember 
Dr. Farnell's impetuous loyalty, military ardour and forthright- 
ness, can well believe that he did not mince matters. Anyway, 


his letter was too much for the Scholar, who wrote to the 
College to say that, had he understood to what, as it now 
appeared, acceptance of a Rhodes Scholarship was committing 
him, he would never have applied for one. Farnell was, of 
course, entirely within his rights in making such conditions for 
admission to Exeter as he, or the College, might choose to make: 
but he went beyond his book when he suggested as the South 
African understood him to do that acceptance of a Rhodes 
Scholarship committed the Scholar to any particular views, 
political or religious. The Founder had said nothing of that. 
Nor had his Trustees. On the contrary, from the Founder's point 
of view, it is as important to attract to Oxford South Africans 
who are Dutch in sentiment as well as by extraction as those who 
are from the start completely British. With the approval of the 
Trustees, I wrote, later, to this uncompromising Dutch-South 
African, to assure him that there was no political creed to which 
a man was expected to subscribe before accepting a Rhodes 
Scholarship, and to suggest that perhaps he might see his way to 
taking up the Scholarship after all. It was too late. 

The Trustees' decision to promote the Bill which revoked the 
German codicil in 1916 was an understandable reaction to the 
'events which have happened'. It was also, implicitly, a criticism 
of the trend of Germany's foreign policy. It was not, and was 
never meant to be, a reflection on the conduct or spirit of the 
individual Germans who had held Scholarships between 1903 and 
1914, though one or two of them were at one time inclined to 
take it as such. Of them as a group I am glad to have this oppor- 
tunity of saying that, in my opinion, they did their best to live 
up to the spirit and intention of the Will, both getting from 
Oxford and giving to it. I think that, within their limits, the 
German Scholarships did as genuinely justify Mr. Rhodes of his 
faith as the American did, or the British. Convinced as I was of 
this, I found it difficult to listen with proper respect to a lady, 
equally distinguished and decided, when, shortly after the first 

110 WAR 

war, she assured me that nothing would have given the German 
Rhodes Scholars greater pleasure than to bomb Oxford. To my 
protests she replied that I did not know the Germans. This I 
countered by saying that however true that might be and it 
was only partially true I did know, as she did not, the individual 
Germans of whom she was speaking, and that I could not think 
of one of them who, if constrained under orders to bomb Oxford, 
would have done so with anything but loathing. That she evi- 
dently regarded as my amiable innocence. 

Some years later, in a book of which I received an early copy, 
my eye was caught by a reference to Rhodes Scholarships. The 
author had allowed himself the bald statement that in the years 
before the war Rhodes's noble beaefaction had been 'perverted 
to base uses by the Germans'. I sat down and wrote an indignant 
letter to the publishers. They replied that they were as much 
put out as I was, and were communicating with the author. A 
few days later, on the high seas, a 'wireless* was handed to me. 
It began (I write from recollection, but the expression was so 
dramatic and satisfying that it graved itself on my memory), *X 
climbs down', and went on to tell me that a'new page was being 
substituted for the offending one. 



1919 and 1920 were years of change everywhere, and Oxford 
was no exception. Some of the changes had a special interest 
for Rhodes Scholars. In the first place, 'compulsory Greek' 
passed for ever away. No doubt some candidates for a Rhodes 
Scholarship heard of this change with relief, though, owing to 
other changes, Greek was not now so general a nuisance as it 
had at one time been; but the change did not come because of 
Rhodes Scholars or for their benefit. It had been in the air an 
increasingly heated air for years, and each year had brought it 
appreciably nearer. The statute that brought the long debate to 
a close passed Convocation on March 2, 1920. 

The second change that was to bring relief to Rhodes Scholars, 
and to a good many others as well, demands something more of 
explanation. Since the nineties of last century there had been in 
existence statutes under which students from other Universities 
in this country or the 'Colonies* who could satisfy certain 
specified conditions could claim 'standing' at Oxford, either 
unior, which exempted from Respoiisions, or senior, which 
exempted from Moderations as 'well. Either standing enabled a 
man to take 'Schools* and degree in two years instead of three, 
provided he had taken Honours. In 1903 these privileges had 
been extended to students from foreign Universities; and, so far 
as Rhodes Scholarships were concerned, 'foreign' meant primarily 
American. A standing committee was charged with the business 
of determining the conditions under which students from other 
Universities could take advantage of these statutes. This com- 
mittee started with the idea of formulating conditions for each 
University separately. This might have been possible for Colonial 
Universities: for American it was impossible as the committee 
before long discovered. There were too many of them. It 



remained to take each application separately, and try to assess the 
value of the individual student's record. But forty or forty-five 
years ago Oxford knew next to nothing about the methods, 
standards or terminology of American Colleges. The academic 
records submitted by Rhodes Scholars aroused in the mind of the 
normal don a bewildered, if amused, suspicion. In these circum- 
stances there was bound to be something happy-go-lucky about 
the decisions of the committee. No one, I think, even of those 
who were on the committee, of which I was a co-opted member, 
felt quite comfortable about it all Presently the war came: and 
after the war the talk was all of closer relations between the 
Americans and ourselves. A commission representing the Univer- 
sities of the British Isles went to the United States and visited a 
number of the leading Universities. They came back to preach 
a more generous recognition of American degrees. The Oxford 
representative was the late E. M. Walker of Queen's, most exact, 
not to say exacting, of classical scholars, and a jealous guardian 
of Oxford standards. But now it was Walker himself who, back 
from America, proposed that Oxford should accept, as qualifying 
for senior standing, any 'approved' degree from any 'approved 5 
University; and further that, so far as American Universities 
were concerned, Oxford should use as its criterion for 'approval' 
a list which the Association of American Universities was in the 
habit at that time of issuing of institutions recognized by itself. 
That list contained the names of something approaching 150 
Colleges or Universities. These proposals were such an expansion 
of Oxford's 'foreign policy' as to be little short of a revolution. 
Perhaps only a fortunate coincidence of hour and man carried 
them through. But through they did go. At first there was 
hesitation and division of opinion as to which degrees at an 
approved University should themselves be approved. Some of 
the degrees (and not in America only) sounded singularly out of 
keeping with traditional views as to what an Oxford B.A. degree 
stood for. However, a kind of 'In for a penny, in for a pound' 
spirit was abroad in Oxford just then, and it was not long before 


Trustee since 1941 

From the portrait by James Gtinn 

Trustee since 1948 


(Victoria and Oriel, 1929) 
Trustee since 1948 

Trustee since 1949 


almost any degree in Arts or Science at an approved University 
came to be accepted as qualifying for senior standing. 

Nor was this expansion of senior standing the last of the 
post-war changes at Oxford of concern to Rhodes Scholars. A 
new degree was established, that of 'Doctor of Philosophy' 
(D.Phil.). Students from many Universities have taken in- 
creasing advantage of this opening to a doctorate, and among 
them many Rhodes Scholars, from the Commonwealth as well 
as from the U.S.A. It is clear that it meets a need. But that need 
might have remained unsatisfied for a good many more years 
had it not been for the war. It was of American students that, in 
1919, the promoters of the change were chiefly thinking. Before 
the war, it had been to Germany that most Americans had been 
in the habit of going for advanced study. But it would be some 
years before they would again be drawn that way. Now was the 
time to divert the stream. But no American Scholar would come 
to Oxford for post-graduate study unless he could get a degree 
which had a market value equal to that of a German or American 
PhJD. ; and that no B.Litt. or B.Sc. could be said to have. Oxford 
must offer a doctorate. So far so good. But at this point a 
difficulty raised its head. Oxford already had doctorates, not in 
'Philosophy', but in Letters and Science, of a character widely 
different from that of either the German or the American Ph.D. 
These Oxford doctorates required a standing, normally, of ten 
years from matriculation, and the submission of books or papers, 
containing an original contribution to the advancement of 
learning or science, which had stood the test of publication for 
at least a year. Would not this new degree lead to confusion, 
and to the lowering of the value of the existing doctorates, which 
were older, more distinguished and, incidentally, more expen- 
sive? I was present at one or more meetings at which the 
proposal was keenly, not to say hotly, debated. Some holders of 
the older doctorates were outspoken as to its 'injustice*. But there 
were effective voices on the other side among which I recall 


those of Professors Walter Raleigh and Joseph Wright. The 
D.Phil, won through. Its passage marked, not exactly a turning 
point, but certainly the beginning of a new phase in the history 
of the Rhodes Scholarships. 

Rhodes House was occupied by the Oxford Secretary in 
December 1928, but for some months he shared it with workmen. 
The formal opening took place in May 1929, the Trustees being 
represented by Sir Otto Beit, Mr. Amery, Mr. H. A. L. Fisher, 
Mr. Edward Peacock and Mr. Geoffrey Dawson, and the 
University by the Chancellor, Lord Grey of Fallodon. 

Sir Otto Beit, on behalf of the Trustees, offered the University 
the use of Rhodes House, and more particularly of the Library, 
and allowed himself to hope that the building would help to keep 
Oxford 'the most beautiful University town in the country'. 
After the Chancellor had thanked the Trustees for their muni- 
ficence, in a speech of characteristic simplicity and sincerity, the 
proceedings were brought to a close by a speech from an old 
Rhodes Scholar, Jan Hofmeyr, of South Africa, who happened 
to be in England at the moment, trying, in the comparative 
leisure of a trip to England after five strenuous years as Adminis- 
trator of the Transvaal, to make up his mind as to the party in 
South Africa with which to throw in his lot. 

Hofmeyr was so remarkable a man, and his career added so 
much lustre to the Scholarships, that there would be something 
missing if the story I am writing included no more than a passing 
reference to him. Born in 1894, he was only sixteen when South 
African College School elected him to their Rhodes Scholarship 
for 1910. He had already taken first class Honours in both 
Classics and Mathematics at the Cape University, but, as he was 
not much more than a boy, permission was given for him to 
postpone taking up his Scholarship until 1913. By then he had 
obtained his M.A. degree, and had taken a large share in the 
writing of the life of his relative, the great Jan Hendrik Hofmeyr. 
At Balliol he took First Classes both in Classical Moderations and 


in Literae Humaniores (besides devoting much time to the 
Balliol Boys' Club). Back in South Africa, he was first a Pro- 
fessor, and then Principal, of the Johannesburg School of Mines, 
which became, under his Principalship, the University of the 
Witwatersrand. When not quite thirty, he was appointed 
Administrator of the Transvaal. His political career began to- 
wards the end of 1929, when he was elected Member of Parlia- 
ment for Johannesburg North. Four years later he became a 
Minister, and was in office for practically the rest of his life, 
serving more than once as Acting Prime Minister when General 
Smuts was out of the country. He was a great administrator, and, 
although he lacked the magnetic something that enables a Lloyd 
George or a Churchill to thrill crowds, also a great orator. A 
member of Mr. Baldwin's Government, a man of wide experi- 
ence, once told me that a speech which he heard Hofineyr make 
as chairman of a public dinner at Johannesburg, while he was 
Administrator of the Transvaal, was perhaps the finest after- 
dinner speech he had ever heard (and I am not sure that I have 
not introduced that 'perhaps' myself). He seemed destined to 
step into the place that Smuts's death would leave empty. By one 
of life's ironies, it was he who went the first. 

Rhodes House plays to-day so large a part in the life of the 
University that it may be of interest if I give some account of the 
stages by which it came to be, and of the close shaves it ran of 
never coming to be at all in the form and on the scale with 
which we are familiar. From the start, the Trustees had intended 
to provide their Oxford Secretary with an official residence more 
in keeping with his position as their representative than was the 
villa in South Parks Road which was all they were able at first 
to secure. As it turned out, however, it was twenty-four years 
before he moved from 9 South Parks Road to Rhodes House. 
But there were moments in the course of those twenty-four years 
when it seemed possible, even likely, that the right house, or site, 
had been found. 


It was in one of the earliest years that I received a letter from 
the Bursar of Brasenose asking if the Trustees would be interested 
in a lease of Frewin Hall, the historic house (parts of which go 
back to the fifteenth century) which Brasenose owns in the 
middle of the town in which, incidentally, King Edward VII 
lived while an undergraduate at Oxford. The Trustees were 
interested; and Boyd, then General Secretary, came down to 
Oxford and went over the house with my wife and myself. It 
was not our report that prevented Frewin Hall from becoming 
the Oxford home of the Rhodes Trust, but the withdrawal of the 
Brasenose offer. I call that shave number one. 

Shave number two came some years later. Hawksley, the 
Trustee who was chiefly interesting himself in this question of a 
house, was keeping his eye on a large and well-situated house in 
Oxford which he thought would meet the Trustees' needs. He 
was not only a friend of the owner, but his solicitor as well, and 
clearly had reason to think that the Trustees would one day have 
it in their power to acquire the property. Indeed, he took me to 
call, on purpose that I should see the inside of the house. In due 
course the house was offered to the Trustees. But Hawksley was 
dead. Owing to a misunderstanding, the offer was refused. 
When that came to my ears, I telephoned to London. It was too 
late. The University had just bought the house. Knowing what 
was in Hawksley's mind, I can only regard it as an accident that 
Rhodes House is where it is, and not at the corner of Jowett 
Walk and Mansfield Road. 

Again, at the close of the 1914-18 war the Trustees approached 
Wadham, in the hope that the College might be willing to sell 
them a strip of land at the north end of what was then known as 
die Warden's Garden. They wanted at that time no more than 
would be enough for a good house and garden; for no one was 
then thinking of a Library, or of any building on the scale of the 
existing Rhodes House. The College was willing to let the 
Trustees have about an acre and a quarter. That was before the 
Christmas vacation. Six weeks give second thoughts their 
chance; and when, in the course of the next term, the Trustees' 


offer came before the College it was refused. The Governing 
Body had changed its mind. So once again it may perhaps be 
said that accident the accident of vacation interrupting negotia- 
tions prevented a home for the Trustees* Oxford Secretary 
being built on a limited but ideal site, which would have so 
satisfied everybody that no question of further building would 
have arisen. 

How comes it, then, that, after all, a great building does stand 
upon the Wadhain site? Well, here too accident played its part. 
In June 1922 Sir George Parkin died. His friends felt that some 
memorial to him was called for. The Rhodes Trustees were 
sympathetic. Two meetings were held in London. It was agreed 
that a small Library of books on the British Empire would be an 
appropriate memorial. At the second meeting, Sir Edward Grigg, 
speaking for the Trustees, whose General Secretary he at that 
time was, said that, if Parkin's friends would find the books, the 
Trustees would house them. That did not sound, at the time, a 
very large undertaking: but it was, in fact, the start of large 
things ; for this idea of a Library in connection with the Secretary's 
house set the Trustees upon a more ambitious scheme than had 
been in their minds originally, one that would need more land 
and, if the building was to be anywhere near the middle of the 
town, considerably more money. When attempts to find any- 
thing suitable in St. Giles or near by had come to nothing, a fresh 
approach was made to Wadham. This time the College, taking 
into account the official and academic character of the building 
contemplated, agreed to sell to the Trustees two acres at the 
north end of the 'Warden's Garden*. The friendly negotiations 
were somewhat prolonged by a copper beech, which stood 
obstinately just on the two-acre line. However, in the end that 
obstacle was not surmounted, but, literally, ckcumvented: and 
so, at long last, the search for a site was ended. 

The Library in Rhodes House has not, after all, been called 
after Parkin, who is commemorated elsewhere in the building: 1 

1 The vestibule leading from the Rotunda to the Mflner Hall is the 'Parkin Vestibule*, 
and contains a bust of Mm. 


but in so far as Rhodes House is more than just a home for the 
Oxford Secretary and it is, of course, immensely more its 
larger character can be traced back to the accident of Parkin's 
death in 1922, with the consequent desire of his friends for some 
memorial to him, and the offer of the Trustees to do their part in 
making such a memorial possible. 

A site secured, it only remained to build upon it. So long as 
Sir Herbert Baker, Rhodes's own architect and intimate friend, 
was available there could be no question of anyone else being 
invited to design the building: nor any question as to his accepting 
the invitation. This was the opportunity for which he had been 
waiting. It gave him a chance to put into stone, in Oxford, what 
Rhodes and South Africa had meant to him. For the next few 
years we saw him often. He would run down for a week-end, 
or for a night only; would prowl about the site, or, as the building 
grew, about that; in the evenings would pore over blue-prints, 
and even, so far as the living quarters were concerned, invite 
suggestions. 1 He would be up early and round at the building 
before breakfast, get back to snatch some food and be off to the 
station. He was putting himself into his job with the intensity 
which was of his temperament; and what the strain was his face 
too often showed. 

Little by little the building grew. It was beginning to suggest 
a fine house of the Cotswold type. But the blue-prints gave no 
hint as to how you would get into it. By a plain door? or a 
porch? or what? We asked Baker. He said he had not made 
up his mind. Something like an accident helped him to make it 
up. The Trustees were coming to feel that there ought to be 
something distinctive in Rhodes House commemorating Milner 
and his services to the Trust. Could not Baker suggest some- 
thing? Baker's answer was the Rotunda. That, unless I am 
mistaken, explains how Rhodes House came to have an entrance 
to it which the rest of the building, so far as it had gone, had 
hardly led us to expect. 

1 It was indeed an 'invited suggestion* that led to the Warden's wing having seven 
bathrooms instead of the mere five for which Baker was planning ! 


Not that the Rotunda remained as the special Milner memorial 
in Rhodes House. Already by the time of the opening of the 
building, in the spring of 1929, it had been decided that, not the 
Rotunda, but the great central hall, should carry Milner's name. 
But what Baker's first intention had been is revealed in the earlier 
published ground-plans of the building. Both the Architect of 
May 10, 1929, and the Builder of May 17, 1929, contain illustra- 
ted articles on Rhodes House, with full ground-plans, obviously 
obtained from Baker's office: and in both the Rotunda is named 
'Milner Hall', and the central hall 'Rhodes Hall'. The change, 
however, was obviously right. The whole building is Rhodes' s, 
not any one part of it. On the other hand, it is altogether seemly 
that the dominant feature in the building, the great hall in the 
middle of it, should recall the Trustee who had been for so 
many years the central force round which the Trust had grown 
and developed. And that left the Rotunda free for what was no 
doubt all along its proper function, not to commemorate any 
particular person, but to symbolize what was, for Baker, the 
authentic Rhodes spirit devotion to an ideal of service. That is 
why round the base of the dome is inscribed in gilt letters Aris- 
totle's definition of man's highest good, 1 which had struck Rhodes 
when, as an undergraduate, he had first come across it, and to 
which he returned again and again through life, as containing, 
for him too, an ideal and an inspiration: why, also, on the upper 
walls the names are engraved of those Rhodes Scholars who, in 
two wars, gave their lives in the service of their countries: why, 
lastly, in the centre of the floor, set in a slab of granite from near 
Rhodes's grave in the Matoppos, is a brass inlay symbolizing, for 
Baker, 'the heat and energy which He at the base of tranquil 

Perhaps it was in keeping with Baker's fundamental idealism 
to seize the opportunity, when it came, of adding a shrine to the 

1 T6 ccv&pcfrmvov dyo96v v^ift Ivlpysia yfveraa KOT* dpn\v y d Ss irAlious a! dpercSa, KQCT& 
-rf)v dplcrrtiv Kod TEAstoTcrrqv, fri 5' tv {3kp TsMtfj (Aristotle, Nicamackean Ethics, lx.6), the 
essential words of which Rhodes himself takes to mean, *the active working of the soul 
in the pursuit of the highest object in a complete life*. 


otherwise mainly utilitarian Cotswold building which was near- 
ing its completion. 

The appearance of a newcomer on so notable a site and so 
close to the heart of Oxford excited a good deal of interest. 
Already before the building was occupied, people would come 
wandering round, curious as to its purpose, or intrigued by its 
architecture. As to the latter, opinions seemed to be divided, as 
probably they still are: but everybody appeared to like the south 
or Wadham front. So I was the more disappointed when a 
former President of Trinity, who was credited with an informed 
interest in architecture, and whom I found one day studying that 
front, in reply to my "Well, I hope you approve of this front' 
(I had a suspicion that he might not of the other), jerked out 
something about 'Doesn't know the scholarship of his subject', 
and turned abruptly away. I then remembered that the style of 
his own library was very different. 

It must have been about the same time that, coming out of 
Rhodes House one morning, I ran into Phelps of Oriel. 'What- 
ever do your Trustees mean', he said, with seeming indignation 
(he was, of course, quite capable of putting it on), 'spending all 
this money on a white elephant. They ought to have given it 
to the Bodleian.' White elephant indeed ! I feel sure that what 
everyone wonders to-day is not what can be done with Rhodes 
House, but how Oxford ever got along without it. There was, 
indeed, at that time a widespread almost, one was tempted 
sometimes to think, a wilful misunderstanding of the purpose 
of Rhodes House; a suspicion that it was, if not to house Rhodes 
Scholars, at least to provide them with a resort of their own. I 
grew weary of explaining that, apart from the east wing, which 
was to provide living quarters for the Oxford Secretary, the 
building was a contribution to the life, not of the Scholars, but 
of the University. How long it took for this perverse mis- 


interpretation of the function of Rhodes House to die down, I 
have no idea. It was still lively when I left in 1931. 

Rhodes House, besides providing the Oxford Secretary with 
living quarters, brought him also new duties* He became 
responsible for a large building, and acquked thereby a new tide, 
that of Warden. Warden is, of course, one of the traditional 
tides used by Heads of Oxford Colleges so steeped in tradition, 
indeed, that one Oxford Warden wrote to protest against its use 
by the Rhodes Trustees ! It had actually been considered by the 
Trustees as a possible title for their Oxford representative at the 
time of his appointment, but rejected on the ground that, until 
there was a building for him to be Warden of, the use of that term 
would be misleading, and might with reason be resented: for 
every Scholar is a member of some College, and as such has his 
own Warden, Provost, Master or whatever the Head of his 
College may be called, whose authority over him he, equally 
with everybody eke, has to recognize. It was better to avoid a 
tide which might seem to hint as 'Warden of the Rhodes 
Scholars' might at some sort of condominium. But 'Warden 
of Rhodes House' suggests no conflicting daim. It is of the 
building, not of the Scholars, that that tide proclaims him to be 
Warden; and that he incontestably is. 

Rhodes House, with its large hall, put it for the first time in 
the power of the Trustees to entertain the Scholars *at home', or 
at least in a more homelike atmosphere than that of die Randolph 
Hotel or the Town Hall. The Founder had suggested in his Will 
that his Trustees should give an annual dinner to *past and present' 
Scholars, and should e from time to time invite as guests persons 
who have shown sympathy with the views of this my Will'. 
This the Trustees regularly did in my time, except during the 
war. They were formal affairs, those dinners, with speeches and 
a good many guests, both from inside and from outside the 


University. No ladies were present, though, where conditions 
permitted, a select few might slip in with the coffee to hear the 
speeches. Of these (I refer to the speeches) there were too many. 
Not that they were not, often, interesting as how could they 
not sometimes be when men like Smuts, Rosebery, Kipling, 
Milner, Barrie, were among those who gave them? 1 but five or 
six speeches at the end of a long dinner drew the entertainment 
out distressingly thin, and left no time for the talk and 'discussion 
of experiences and prospects' for which Mr. Rhodes expressly 
wished the dinners to be the occasion. As years passed and 
numbers grew, the thing became unwieldy. In the crowded 
years after the 1914-18 war even the Town Hall could barely 
hold us. In 1926 the Trustees decided to make a change. There- 
after there should be two dinners each year, one for the Freshmen 
in the Michaelmas Term, and one in the Summer Term for those 
who were 'going down', and it would be to the latter that past 
Rhodes Scholars and outside guests would be invited. This 
change only anticipated by a few years what the limited size of 
the Milner Hall in Rhodes House would in any case have forced 
upon the Trustees: but, quite apart from any space considerations, 
there were sound arguments for having two dinners, each with a 
character of its own, and each gaining by separation from the 
other. Experience has more than justified the change. 

The most considerable happening in 1929 was the Reunion of 
old Rhodes Scholars in July. Scholars and wives between them 
came to not far short of 300, and there were children besides. 
Most of the bachelors were put up in the Colleges to which they 
had belonged. The problem of families was more serious, but 
was solved. 

For the best part of a week there were entertainments and 
gatherings of one sort or another: among diem a garden-party 

1 1 like to recall that, in my opinion, one of the best speeches I heard at any of those 
dinners was that of an old Rhodes Scholar, Dr. W. L. Sperry (Michigan and Queen's, 

190*}, Dean of Harvard Divinity School 


at Ritodes House, and another at Cliveden, given by Lord and 
Lady Astor, with. Bernard Shaw as an extra attraction; trips to 
places of interest in the neighbourhood; a dinner in the Milner 
Hall, with Mr. Baldwin in the Chair, and the Prince of Wales 
as chief guest; a general business-or-discussion meeting of the 
Rhodes Scholars attending the Reunion; and, to wind it all up, 
a reception, given by His Majesty's Government, in Westminster 
Hall. The invitation to this last had been given by Mr. Baldwin's 
Government before it fell, but the Labour Government which 
succeeded stood by it handsomely. 

The big event of the week was the Dinner (with a well-earned 
capital D). It had been planned that all seven Trustees 1 should 
be at Rhodes House to give the Prince of Wales an official 
welcome on his arrival. He was expected at seven, dinner being 
set for a quarter to eight. Well on time ahead of it even the 
Trustees had gathered in the living-room of the Warden's wing. 
There was desultory chat. The clock ticked on. It was close on 
seven-thirty. A message came the Prince had been detained. 
None of the Trustees were dressed for dinner. Mr. Baldwin and 
Sir Otto Beit were safe; they were dressing in Rhodes House. 
The other five decided that, Prince or no Prince, they must hurry 
away to dress. And that was the end of the formal welcome by 
the seven. One or two senior guests had by this time arrived. 
We were all in the living-room, except Philip Kerr, who was on 
the watch for the Prince. Word comes that the Prince is on the 
point of arriving. Steps are heard behind a screen which hides 
the door. Mr. Baldwin is in front ready to receive the Royal 
guest. The rest of us are stiffly on the alert. Someone comes 
round the screen. Mr. Baldwin is bowing. Not the Prince, after 
all! Only the arrival of another guest Sir Edward Grigg. 
'Ned, you brute', says Mr. Baldwin; and everybody bursts out 
laughing. Suddenly into the confusion of this anticlimax comes, 
unheralded, the Prince himself, followed by an equerry and 
Philip Kerr. Mr. Baldwin recovers what he can of his spoilt bow. 

1 Mr. Baldwin. Sir Otto Beit, Lord Lovat, Mr. Amery, Mr. Geoffrey Dawson, Mr. 
H. A. L. Fisher (Warden of New College) and Mr. Edward Peacock. 


It Is all rather flurried and informal, not at all like the intended 

The Prince is taken off to dress. Discovering that his equerry, 
Brigadier-General G. R Trotter, who had the use of only one 
arm, had been assigned a room some way from his own, the 
Prince asks that he be given one nearer, in order that the two of 
them could share the Prince's valet. It is pleasant to put upon 
record this spontaneous act of princely consideration. 

In due course the Prince reappeared, and the Rhodes Scholars 
filed past him on their way to dinner, in so continuous a stream 
as saved him the strain of trying to think of something to say to 
each of them. The dinner passed off much as all such dinners do. 
Mr. Baldwin, true to form, kept a large tin box of pipe tobacco 
by his side all the evening. The chief speakers were Mr. Baldwin 
and the Prince, but there were also speeches from representative 
Rhodes Scholars. 

Before the dinner ended, an old Rhodes Scholar, who is no 
longer alive, Vincent K. Buder 1 (California, 1911), sprang a 
surprise. It appeared that he had secured two letters written by 
Mr. Rhodes in his own hand to Mr. Hawksley bearing, one on 
some of the qualities to be looked for in Rhodes Scholars, the 
other on uses to which his Trustees might put any yearly balance 
of income after provision for the Scholarships. These letters had 
been at some time or other acquired by Mr. Herbert Hoover, 
and presented by him to the Hoover Library of Stanford Univer- 
sity; but now, with the approval of Mr. Hoover (by this time 
President of the United States), Dr. Wilbur, the President of 
Stanford, had generously consented to give them to the Rhodes 
Scholars of the United States, on whose behalf Mr. Butler now 
offered them to the Rhodes Trustees for the Library of Rhodes 
House. Mr. Baldwin accepted the offer, and expressed the 
gratitude of the Trustees both to Stanford University and to the 
Association of American Rhodes Scholars. 

After dinner the Prince played his part royally: there were no 

1 Mr. Butler, a loyal and active old Rhodes Scholar, and an eqtiaHy loyal son of 
Worcester College, Oxford, lost his life in an aeroplane accident in October 1935. 


two opinions about that. It was near midnight when he left. 
As his car disappeared into the darkness, *A success', said the 
Oxford Secretary to himself, *and thank Heaven it's over'. 

* * * 

And so my term of office, and with it this story, draws to its 
close. The Rhodes Scholarships are manifestly 'of age'. They 
have come to stay. Rhodes Scholars are not merely accepted, 
they are welcomed, as bringing something healthy and distinctive 
to the increasingly variegated life of undergraduate Oxford. As 
we leave Rhodes House, and Dr. and Mrs. Allen take our place, 
I already know that the success of Mr. Rhodes's venture is assured. 





General Secretary, 1925-1939 

From the posthumous portrait by James Gunn 

in the Milner Hall, Rhodes House 

LORD ELTON (General Secretary 

since 1939) & LADY ELTON 

at tlie 1953 Reunion 


From left to right: standing, Lady Wylie, Sir Francis Wylie, Sir Carleton Allen, Lady Allen; 

sitting, Mrs. Williams, Mr. Williams 



SIR FRANCIS WYLIE was at work for a considerable time 
on his reminiscences. They were no light labour for a man 
of his age, especially when they were concurrent with his in- 
defatigable, world-wide correspondence. It was with some relief 
that he completed his self-imposed task, and he died, aged 
eighty-seven, not many months afterwards. 

With that unaffected modesty which was so characteristic of 
him, he often expressed doubts whether his recollections would 
be *of much interest to anybody*. We, who are now able to read 
and enjoy them, have cause to be very thankful that he overcame 
that diffidence before he stole away from us; for he had a know- 
ledge and a memory of his subject which no other living man 
possessed and which is therefore a unique record of the early 
history of the Rhodes Scholarships, with all its problems, expedi- 
ents and vicissitudes, and (not least important) all its humours. 
To these latter Sir Francis, to the end of his days, never ceased to 
be alive, tolerantly but vivaciously; and that was fortunate, for, 
as his successor, -I can well understand that a sense of humour was 
a highly necessary quality in the Secretary, or 'Agent* (astonishing 
suggestion !), during the nonage of the Scholarships. 

Sir Francis has touched on many questions which remain 
permanent facets of the Scholarships, and in these ensuing pages 
it will be my object to supplement his observations from my own 
experience, and then to give a short account of what seem to me 
to be the principal events and developments during my term of 
office, from 1931 to 1952. 

While my memory does not, of course, go back as far as 
Wylie's, it does stretch to one event which is the starting-point of 

K 129 


his story. When Mr. Rhodes'* "Will was made public, I was a 
boy of fifteen in Sydney, New South Wales, and I well remember 
the profound impression which it made. Australia at that time 
was very conscious of itself and its destiny, for it had recently 
become a federation. It shared, for the most part, the 'imperialist' 
temper of the time. We had seen, with excited plaudits, the 
contingents of 'Absent-minded Beggars', in their strange, new 
garb of khaki, marching off to do battle with Kruger; and, if I 
remember aright, there was not very much of that criticism of 
the Boer War which found forcible, if unpopular, expression 
among some of the Liberals in England. South Africa, therefore, 
had been prominently in all Australian minds, and Mr. Rhodes 
was its personification. There were, however, some worthy 
people, my own pious mother among them, who were a little 
doubtful about him; they asked themselves not without Scrip- 
tural authority whether a man could be so big, so powerful, so 
great a lord of this world, and at the same time a good man? 
But when the Will was announced, virtue had triumphed ! It 
was an unexampled bond between the new Australian nation and 
what even the Cynics' Bible of the day, the Sydney Bulletin, 
disrespectfully but tolerantly called 'the Ma Country'. To be 
grappled thus with hooks of steel to such a friend could not be 
anything but good, for to a great many Australians England was, 
always and instinctively, 'Home'. I believe it still is to some, but 
the average Australian of to-day can hardly realize how intensely 
an those days the Australian's castle was his English home. 

Soon afterwards I, as an inky junior, was forcibly reminded of 
the great benefaction when the second Rhodes Scholar from 
New South Wales was elected from among the Olympians in 
the Sixth Form at Newington College. He was the late P. H. 
Rogers, afterwards Sir Percival Halse Rogers, a Judge of the 
Supreme Court of New South Wales, and for a time Chancellor 
of the University of Sydney. I recall that he sent a picturesque 
account of Oxford to the school magazine, but all I remember 
about it is that every undergraduate wore turned-up trousers (a 
quaint whimsy then to Antipodeans) and that the proper name 


for a waste-paper basket was a wagger-pagger-bagger. This 
struck me as a fascinating aspect of the nonpareil University, and 
when I eventually found myself there I had the distinction of 
adding to the remarkable argot of the time ('Ugger', 'Mugger', 
'brekker', 'ecker' and all the barbarous brood) by christening 
the Vice-Chancellor the 'Vicker-Chagger'. The title, I believe, 
had some currency, but seems latterly to have fallen into regret- 
table desuetude and even disrepute. 

Cecil Rhodes's Will is one of the most famous in the world; of 
few other men can it be said with greater truth that 'he, being dead, 
yet speaketh'; but it is a very puzzling document, which would 
seem at first sight to do more credit to the testator's benevolence 
than to his acumen. The distribution is extraordinary. It may be, 
as Wylie has argued elsewhere, that Mr. Rhodes knew exactly 
what he was doing when he appropriated 'two of the American 
Scholarships to each of the present States and Territories of the 
United States of America', thereby (whether he intended it or 
not) founding ninety-six Scholarships for the United States as 
against only sixty for the British constituencies which he named; 
but neither Sir Francis nor anybody else has explained why he 
allotted only two (annual) scholarships to Canada* while Australia 
had six, South Africa (consisting then only of the Cape Colony 
and Natal & very small white population) five, four of which 
were allotted to specified schools, Rhodesia (then a mere handful 
of settlers) three, while three venerable colonies, Newfoundland, 
Bermuda and Jamaica had one each, other colonies with good 
historical claims being passed over. If the Founder intended this 
arrangement to stand in perpetuity, he was possessed of less 
imagination than has usually been ascribed to him. But to me it 
is inconceivable that he ever had any such intention. He cannot 
possibly have supposed it would have been contrary to all his 
aspirations that die British Empire would remain for ever as it 
was in 1900. It is my firm belief that, having indicated the 
tenor, and designed the framework, of his Will, he intended to 


leave complete discretion to his Trustees to make the adjustments 
which would inevitably become necessary in the course of time. 
Of this I have not the smallest proof, except the fact that it was 
a consistent principle throughout his life that when he trusted 
a man (say, Dr. Jameson or Jack Pickering) he did so absolutely. 
It was not easy to win his trust, but when he accorded it, there 
were no reservations. I believe that that was his attitude to the 
men whom he selected to fulfil his 'great idea', and that, as other 
parts of the Will suggest, he never intended to fetter their dis- 
cretion or authority. If I thought otherwise, I should have to 
conclude that Cecil Rhodes was a much more naive person 
than I believe he was. 

The Will, however, was so drawn, or at all events so inter- 
preted, that the original Scholarships became 'entrenched' for all 
time. The steps which were taken by the Trustees for a more 
equitable distribution have been described by Lord Elton. By 
the time I came into office all the more important adjustments 
had been made, except those which were to follow with regard 
to East Africa, Malta, India and Pakistan. 

My wife and I had not been long at Rhodes House before we 
realized not that we needed evidence how much we owed to 
the pioneer labours of our predecessors. They did everything 
possible to acquaint us with the Scholarship system in all its 
ramifications. I had also had some practical initiation before I 
took up my duties in Oxford, as the Trustees had sent me on a 
pilgrimage in the United States and Canada, where I travelled 
unceasingly for some four months. I found this an invaluable 
experience in my subsequent work, and to this day remain 
greatly indebted to all the Rhodes Scholars who made the tour 
so agreeable and at the same time so instructive. 

Unfortunately, my wife was unable to accompany me on this 
journey, because of the incorrigible habit which babies have of 
arriving at inconvenient times. Not only the newly-born, but 
all children of tender age, are an obstacle to travel, but we 
managed to make arrangements for them during our later 
excursions to South Africa, the United States, Canada and 


Bermuda. All these journeys were of the greatest value to us in 
clothing with flesh and. blood the whole geography of the 
Scholarships. I have often thought that the Warden of Rhodes 
Mouse ought to spend almost as much time abroad as at home. 
But his Oxford duties are exacting and continuous, and unfor- 
tunately science, with all its triumphs over time and space, has 
not yet invented a means of being in half a dozen places at the 
same time. 

Let me say here how warmly I endorse Wylie's observations 
about the conjugal partnership at Rhodes House. With true 
British reserve, he did not feel able to say much about the con- 
tribution of the young wife whom he married in 1904, and who 
was confronted immediately and without previous experience 
with onerous and largely unforeseeable duties; but everybody 
knows how great and how invaluable that contribution was. 
For her successor, it was a daunting prospect to live up to Lady 
Wylie's standard and reputation. As for the sequel, I must follow 
Wylie's example of discretion. 



BY 1931 most of the teething troubles which Wylie has 
described were over. There was no longer any difficulty, for 
the average Rhodes Scholar, about academic status, nor was there 
any question of a 'qualifying examination or of Responsions 
and compulsory Greek, From time to time there were trouble- 
some cases of men who, for one technical reason or another, did 
not qualify for Senior Status (which enables an overseas student 
to take the Oxford Final Honour Schools in two years, without 
any preliminary examinations). There were even a few instances 
of Rjiodes Scholars of twenty-two or twenty-three years of age, 
with a full academic course behind them, being obliged, on 
these technical grounds, to waste a term or two in taking the old 
Pass Moderations before they could go on to their serious work. 
I always deplored these casualties and sympathized with the 
victims; but rules are rules and statutes are statutes, and at first I 
found that the University tended to assimilate its laws to those 
of the Medes and Persians. As time went on and Oxford became 
more and more accustomed to overseas recruits and their special 
problems, a more liberal tendency to concessions showed itself in 
the committee room and council chamber, and certainly after the 
second war it was rare for a Rhodes Scholar to suffer impedi- 
ment or hardship through any of the lurking snares which 
abound under Oxford's complicated regulations. It was helpful 
that the Warden of Rhodes House was, and remains, a member 
of the Other Universities* Committee which deals with these 
matters and makes recommendations to the Hebdomadal 

These considerations apply only to those Rhodes Scholars (the 
vast majority) who have already taken degrees before coming to 
Oxford; and I here venture to register my entire concurrence 



with. Wylie's view that this earlier preparation is desirable for all 
but a very few Rhodes Scholars. The question of the 'ideal' age 
for the Rhodes Scholar has always been controversial, and in 
truth there is no 'ideal* age, since maturity varies so much with 
individuals; but my experience of Rhodes Scholars, and my 
own remembered experience when I first came to Oxford from 
Australia, confirm me in the opinion that very few overseas 
men are qualified to come straight from school to the Oxford 
disciplines; and I have known some who, in the attempt to do 
so, have felt hopelessly out of the race and thereby missed much 
of the benefit of the Scholarship. There are, on the other hand, 
some Rjiodes Scholars, with previous University training, who 
are too mature, and too far advanced in their studies, to find the 
Oxford Final Honour Schools appropriate or profitable. Nowa- 
days though it was not so to the same extent in Wylie's time 
these seniors can, and nearly always do, engage in advanced 
research at Oxford. That, however, is another academic question 
not without its problems, and I shall have more to say of it. 

There was no serious difficulty, by the time I came into office, 
in the relationship of the Warden of Rhodes House with the 
Colleges. The Scholarships, the Scholars and the system of 
administration were all so familiar that one was no longer in the 
posture of a humble petitioner. Tact was always necessary, 
for Oxford Colleges are sensitive organisms, always conscious 
of their independence in judgment and policy; but, with very 
few exceptions, I found diem co-operative and understanding, 
and if at times they showed a little impatience, it was only because 
they did not realize, and could not be expected to realize, the 
special problems of the Rhodes administration. 

A slight difficulty which Wyiie does not mention, perhaps 
because he did not suffer from it, but which I found rather 
troublesome, was that of College reports. The Warden of Rhodes 
House sees all his men at regular and sometimes irregular ! 
intervals, but he cannot keep an eye on them all the time and he 


is absolutely dependent on Colleges or individuals for information 
about their work, progress and conduct. This intelligence varied 
enormously; sometimes it was sent, in a pro forma manner, 
by the Head of the House, who occasionally did not appear to 
have a very intimate knowledge of his men; sometimes by a Dean 
or Senior Tutor, whose personal knowledge was usually more 
exact; while sometimes reports were collected by the Head from 
individual Tutors, a few of whom were always late, unresponsive 
or laconic. Many of these reports were extremely perceptive and 
conscientious and of the greatest help to the official who stood 
in loco parentis; others were so perfunctory and uninformative as 
to leave him quite in the dark. I longed to try to establish some 
uniform system and to apply some stimulus to the men of few 
words, but this was just one of the things which one could not 
ask, or even suggest, without the appearance of impertinence 
which would have been sharply resented. With regard to re- 
search students the difficulty was even greater. Colleges provided 
little information about them, and one day I got a shock. A 
certain researcher had been given colourless but on the whole 
commendatory terminal reports by his College. I happened to 
be sitting at dinner next to his supervisor & very distinguished 
scientist who casually remarked that this Rhodes Scholar was 
the most idle and unsatisfactory man he had ever had in his 
laboratory. The Tollow-up' measures which ensued, both with 
the man himself and his College, I need not describe; but I 
resolved there and then in future to obtain reports on researchers 
direct from their supervisors. I had no claim on them and 
certainly no right to demand anything of them, but I can never 
be sufficiently grateful for the way in which they responded. I 
do not think it is too much to say that before long I knew more 
about my research men than some of their Colleges did. ,Ml sorts 
of difficulties, and even discouragements, arise from time to time 
for research students at Oxford, and the knowledge which super- 
visors so freely accorded me often enabled me at least to dear 
the air, if not actually to smooth the path, by discussions with 
the researcher himself, or with his supervisor, or with both. 


Altogether, as an example of the celebrated ethos of Oxford 
Colleges, I constantly noticed great differences in the personal 
knowledge and interest which teaching staffs seemed to have in 
their pupils; but wild horses would not drag from me any 
invidious comparisons in print ! 

Rhodes House itself was still new and untried in 193 1, and the 
scepticism about the 'white elephant', to which Wylie has alluded, 
had not entirely disappeared and took a considerable time to 
vanish. To the end of my time and I dare say my successor 
finds the same there were still people who thought of Rhodes 
House as a kind of residential hostel, or social club-house, for 
Rhodes Scholars. As time went on, the manifold purposes which 
the building served, and which could not very well have found 
any other centre in Oxford, became evident to the discerning and 
were not lightly scoffed at. What was not always realized was 
that the accommodation provided at Rhodes House was entirely 
free hospitality. It has always been the policy of the Trustees to 
make no charge whatever, not even for 'overheads', to their 
guests. In this way the Trustees have retained complete discre- 
tion, at the cost of what might be a considerable revenue, about 
the guests whom they are willing to entertain. There is, needless 
to say, a certain general policy in this matter, but it is reasonably 
elastic and comprehensive, excluding only those activities which 
are plainly partisan or controversial. Now and then it irked me 
a little to receive somewhat imperious demands for accommoda- 
tion, with requests for * terms', from undergraduate societies and 
others, but these were made only through ignorance and were 
easily set right. During both term and vacation the activities and 
interests at Rhodes House became more and more diverse and I 
found it necessary to increase my secretarial staff in order to cope 
with them. Not the least memorable occasions were the Sunday 
night meetings of the Ralegh Club, at which many eminent 
visitors, of acknowledged authority in their different spheres, 
talked informally and privately on manifold aspects of the British 


Commonwealth and joined in the brisk fireside discussion after- 
wards. In the summer term the Club, under the tireless guidance 
of the late Professor Sir Reginald Coupland, arranged a week-end 
'corroboree' which was attended by many distinguished guests. 
The masculine dinner ladies dining separately with my wife in 
the Warden's Lodgings in the Milner Hall was the occasion of 
much oratory, among which I remember specially a brilliant and 
entertaining speech by Sir Winston Churchill, who was then 'in 
the wilderness' but was a most powerful voice crying therein. 
Another outstanding occasion was the visit of Mahatma Gandhi 
a most impressive personality and fluent speaker, though many 
of us found it difficult to divert him from idealistic abstraction to 
what seemed to us to be concrete problems. The Ralegh Club 
always had a preferential standing at Rhodes House, and, indeed, 
when the building was designed the Trustees gave special thought 
to the accommodation of the Club in the stately Beit Room. 

I will not attempt to describe all the other activities at Rhodes 
House, but anyone who saw the list of a typical year's meetings 
and doings would, I think, agree that very little time or space is 
wasted by the 'white elephant'. Whatever its colour, it is a 
working and a willing animal, capable of bearing heavy loads. 

Another of the early awkwardnesses evaporated in the course 
of time. There have always been coloured Rhodes Scholars, 
particularly from Jamaica, who of course have been on the same 
footing as all others at Rhodes House. In 1931 their presence, 
however excellent they might be as individuals, still produced a 
noticeable restraint in the company of Rhodes Scholars from 
certain constituencies. By 1952, and indeed much earlier, this 
had entirely disappeared. To-day I think it may be claimed that 
there is no colour-bar whatever at Oxford, and anything like 
the protest, which Wylie has described, at the election of a 
negro Rhodes Scholar would, I make no doubt, have a very 
unsympathetic reception. One of the most significant changes I 
have seen in Oxford during my long residence in it is that several 


dark-complexioned overseas men have been elected Presidents of 
the Union a thing inconceivable in my undergraduate days. 
Indeed, in those prehistoric times it was regarded as revolutionary 
when a 'Colonial', who happened to be a Riodes Scholar, was 
elected President of the Junior Common Room in my College 
not without some fluttering of the Old School Tie. 

One problem with which Wylie had to contend remained for 
his successor, and, so far as I know, still remains. I refer to the 
allocation of Rhodes Scholars to Colleges. Sir Francis has 
described the general system which I took over. There are 
twenty-one Colleges in Oxford and the Scholar-elect is required 
to nominate eight in order of preference. He may have a special 
connection with a particular College, either because a number of 
his predecessors from the same constituency have gone there 
(these territorial affiliations are not uncommon), or because, as 
often happens, he has been privately recommended to it by an 
old member. If, however, he has no special reason for his choice, 
his list of preferences is largely guess-work* He may have heard 
of, say, half a dozen of the Oxford Colleges; the remainder are 
scarcely even names to him. The result is that the few which, 
for one reason or another, are best known to the outside world, 
nearly always get more first choices than they can possibly take, 
while other Colleges which, whether justly or unjustly, are not 
equally renowned, get very few, if any, applications from 
Rhodes Scholars. This I always found extremely embarrassing. 
Differences between the prestige of Colleges are act nowadays so 
marked as they were in former times, and I could not deny the 
justice of complaints by some Colleges that, while quite ready to 
take their quota of Rhodes Scholars, they never seemed to get 
anything but the leavings' of other Colleges and sometimes got 
no applications at all It was difficult to explain to them that the 
"leavings' were by no means the least desirable material. I have 
known many examples of men who could not find places where 
they most desired and who have ended up, not without negotia- 
tion, at Colleges which they never contemplated; again and again 
it has turned out that they were bappier there than they probably 


would have been in the larger Colleges of thek ambitions. Often 
they failed in thek first choices because thek dossiers, on which 
the Colleges form thek judgments, and especially the 'personal 
statements* which they are requked to present to thek Selection 
Committees, did them grave injustice, and they proved to be far 
better men in the flesh than on paper. Indeed, after twenty years' 
experience, I could never be sure of the real quality of a Rhodes 
Scholar from the contents of his dossier. Many times I found 
that my tentative judgment was quite belied, for better or for 
worse, by the man himself when he appeared. Ah, those 'personal 
statements' ! If any aspiring Rhodes Scholar should read these 
lines, I adjure him, when he comes to render his biography and 
self-analysis to a Selection Committee, to write simply and 
unaffectedly about himself and not with large utterance' or 
facetiousness; for what he writes will eventually be seen by the 
cold, practised eyes of Oxford Dons, and there are no persons in 
the world less responsive to rhetoric, polysyllables and ill-judged 
humour than College tutors. 

Another drawback of the system of distribution is that great 
diversity exists in the methods by which Colleges deal with thek 
applications. Sometimes the choice rests in the hands of one or 
two officers of the College, or of a small committee; sometimes 
it is the practice that every Fellow sees the dossiers and expresses 
his opinion, the votes being collected by the Head or other officer 
of the College. It can be imagined that this last method is cum- 
brous and dilatory. There is always the don who holds up the 
papers or forgets about them, and on most Governing Bodies 
there are some recent Fellows who have had little experience of 
Rhodes Scholar applicants and are not very well qualified to 
express an opinion about them. It seemed and still seems to me 
elementary that every College should have a small representative 
body which surely could be trusted to make the selection, with 
due attention to die teaching resources of the College and the 
opinions of the tutors who were most likely to be concerned 
with the applicants. But who was I, or anybody else, to prescribe 
for Colleges thek methods and customs? They would have told 


me, very rightly and with, some emphasis, to mind my own 

At an informal conference, however, I put to College represen- 
tatives quite frankly the great inconvenience from which my 
predecessor had suffered, and which I was beginning to experi- 
ence, when a minority of Colleges *sat on their dossiers for an 
unreasonable time, thereby holding up the whole process of 
distribution, to the disadvantage not only of other Colleges but 
of the applicants themselves. It was amusing to see cordial 
approval on the faces of representatives from business-like 
Colleges, and some faint blushes on other faces. The righteous 
prevailed and there was ready agreement to a new time-table, to 
which the Colleges pledged diemselves, for a series of circulations 
of dossiers. This was an immense improvement. For the re- 
mainder of my time the Colleges, with very few exceptions, 
adhered most considerately to the time-table and greatly eased 
a task which, in the most favourable circumstances, takes the best 
part of a team to complete and generally needs some diplomacy 
in a few cases which seem problematical but seldom turn out to 
be so in fact. As to at least half of it, the process of distribution 
was easy and straightforward; as to the remainder, while I found 
it extremely interesting and sometimes entertaining, I confess I 
heaved a sigh of relief when all was done and settled. Academic 
homes have to be found for between sixty and seventy Rhodes 
Scholars every year, and in recent times these knockers at the 
door have stood in ever-intensifying competition with many 
other overseas applicants of first-rate quality. A Rhodes Scholar 
cannot nowadays gain entrance to a CoEege merely because he is 
a Rhodes Scholar. He has to approve himself as an individual 
aspirant against strong rivals; and while nearly all Colleges feel 
some historical obligation to the Rhodes Scholarships, there are 
to-day, from all parts of the world, heavy demands upon their 
limited space and resources. This is one of the reasons why the 
Trustees have constantly impressed on Selection Committees that 
it is better not to elect at all than to said to Oxford men who 


compare unfavourably with others less fortunately endowed. 
The precept has been generally taken to heart. 

* * * 

Such other problems as remained were those which are in- 
evitable among any cross-section of youth. Nobody will be 
surprised if I say that not every one of the young men who came 
under my tutelage reached the highest standard of Mr. Rliodes's 
'rectitude', whether 'unctuous' or otherwise. I am happy to say, 
however, that cases of grave indiscipline or indolence were 
microscopically small. On die rare occasions when they occurred, 
my own view and I think it was generally that of the Trustees 
was somewhat stern, for I felt that since Rhodes Scholars were 
elected partly on grounds of character, it was right to expect of 
them not, indeed, impeccability, but a high standard of conduct 
and ethic. Colleges, I found, were generally disposed to mediate 
in favour of extenuation; that was doubtless all to the good, and 
as between prosecution and defence, I hope and believe that 
substantial justice was done. On only a few occasions my duty 
demanded that I should speak to RJiodes Scholars with frank 
reproach and even perhaps with some heat. I record with 
satisfaction that, with only two exceptions that I can remember, 
they did not resent plain speaking or make it a ground for 
personal hostility; several, on the contrary, have later expressed 
gratitude for it. There are some out of this erring handful who 
have proved abundandy by their later careers that they have 
quite overcome earlier defects and that drastic or unsympathetic 
measures at a time of difficulty might have been a poison rather 
than a medicine. 

I suffered far more anxiety on account of the physical than of 
the moral health of Rhodes Scholars. Soon after we had taken 
office a freshman Rhodes Scholar from a very distant land nearly 
died of a sudden virulent infection, and would almost certainly 
have done so but for the swift and skilful ministrations of a young 
doctor. (He recovered so thoroughly that he went on undeterred 
to an outstanding academic performance at Oxford.) Later there 


were several alarming cases of fulminant tuberculosis. Towards 
the end of our time there were two grave cases (with splendid 
recovery) of poliomyelitis and a heart-rending one of fatal 
leukaemia. Then there was the enemy, so familiar to all who 
have to deal with young men and women, of nervous and 
psychological disorder; nothing in my experience is more 
anxious or perplexing, and there is no University community 
in the world where it is not a problem; for youth, pace the poets, 
is not a care-free time of life. Let me not give the impression that 
serious ill health was common among Rhodes Scholars; on the 
contrary, it affected only a very small minority; but when it 
occurred it was made the more perturbing by the fact that the 
patient was a long way from his home and it was essential to keep 
parents and kindred informed and to warn them of any danger. 
Every Rhodes Scholar at candidature is now required to produce 
a medical certificate, and since he is ex hypothesi not 'merely 
a bookworm', if not actually an athlete, good physique is to be 
presumed for the vast majority. There are, however, lurking 
dangers; experience showed the two chief of them to be latent 
tuberculosis on the physical side and family history on the 
psychological side. Much thought was given to improving the 
form and content of the medical certificate, but it is very difficult 
to devise a kind which is not either too elaborate and fussy or too 
sketchy and uninformative. Towards the end of my time the 
University and the Colleges had taken the initiative with regard 
to that insidious threat to youth, tuberculosis; systematic radio- 
graphy has done much to circumvent this ambushed assassin, but 
it had not come to tie rescue in some of the early, distressing 
cases which troubled my slumbers. As for the elusive factors 
which contribute to nervous or mental instability, it does not 
seem possible to devise a prophylactic without inquisitorial 
methods which would be both impracticable and unseemly. 

Apart from actual illness, a certain lowness of spirits is not 
uncommon, and perhaps not very damaging, among Rhodes 


Scholars in their first contact with Oxford. They arrive when 
the English winter is approaching and their first Michaelmas 
Term may be a penance of shivering endurance. I am convinced 
though as a mere layman I have no right to be dogmatic that 
some of those who come from sunny countries, especially South 
Africans, suffer at first from sheer physical deprivation of the 
ultra-violet rays to which they are accustomed. The antidote, no 
doubt, is vigorous exercise, but not all Rhodes Scholars can row 
or play Rugby. There are sometimes other and unexpected 
physical discomforts. I remember one Rhodes Scholar who had 
been accustomed, like Kingsley Fairbridge himself, to long 
excursions on the veldt, with no company but himself and a gun. 
In Oxford he suffered from a positive claustrophobia. England 
was a kind of prison to him. So it remained until one vacation 
when I induced him to ramble at large on Dartmoor and Exmoor. 
He then realized that even a small island has its wide-open spaces, 
and thereafter he seemed to be a changed man. He was enthusi- 
astic about Oxford before he left it and is now a valued and 
responsible officer in the Colonial Service. 

Even English diet may be a trial both to the flesh and to the 
spirit. It was certainly so in the lean, strictly-rationed period 
after the second war. I do not think that health suffered per- 
ceptibly from short commons, but many Rhodes Scholars with 
lusty youthful appetites would have gone perpetually hungry but 
for the parcels which they received from home. Even in times 
of comparative plenty, American young men tend to complain 
of the inadequacy of milk supply. I could never persuade them 
that the Demon Milk is the great national vice of the United 
States, tending to turn strong men into human cheeses; they 
replied, not without point, that, on the showing of international 
contests, milk seemed to be food not only for babes but for some 
singularly good athletes ! It is said that on one occasion some 
American Rhodes Scholars, well schooled in principles of nutri- 
tion, complained to an eminent Head of a House (now deceased) 
that the College regimen did not contain the proper proportion 
of calories and carbohydrates. The Head was a philosopher, not 


a dietician, and he made the shocking reply: 'God preserve us all 
from a balanced diet !' It is, of course, an established under- 
graduate convention that no College food is fit for human 
consumption; but, all allowances made for this ancient supersti- 
tion, newcomers from lands of plenty do genuinely find some- 
times that British institutional cooking does not elate them. They 
cannot even be persuaded that the sodden brussels sprouts which 
inspire their implacable scorn really do contain more vitamins 
than the doughnuts for which they crave. Most of them, how- 
ever, soon become corrupted by afternoon tea, with its 'filling' 
qualities, though perhaps only as an escape from British coffee. 

These physical impacts, though not unimportant, are trivial 
beside the larger question of the general effect of Oxford on the 
minds, characters and temperaments of Rhodes Scholars. The 
Trustees and their officers have always recognized that adaptation 
to Oxford is in itself a test, and sometimes a severe test, of the 
real stuff of a Rhodes Scholar. Those who have not received 
their education and their formative influences in other countries 
can scarcely realize how bewilderingly different Oxford is from 
anything which the average Rhodes Scholar has ever known. 
The process of adjustment is usually slow and sometimes painful, 
and I never thought it a disadvantage that it was gradual. Some 
men come to Oxford with romantic ideas, expecting to find an 
earthly paradise, physical and intellectual. I was always a little 
sceptical about them, lest their first fine rapture should yield as 
it sometimes did to a certain measure of disillusionment. On 
the other hand, it never troubled me greatly when a man was 
somewhat lost*, homesick and even unhappy at first. If he was 
going to absorb any of the essential Oxford, it was better, for 
die most part, that he should find it by trial and error, and in his 
own way. Sometimes he never did. There were a few Rhodes 
Scholars in my time who remained impervious and never settled 
down. Some I think most of these were men who did not 
get on well at Oxford because, being of difficult temperament, 
they did not get on well anywhere; a few were men of so paro- 
chial an outlook that their minds were inddbiscent to any new 


impressions; and some were good and promising men who, 
without fault on either side, were unable to find at Oxford the 
kind of work which they wanted and were qualified to do for 
Oxford, with all its wide range of studies, does not profess to 
supply everything, 'from a needle to an anchor', from the 
department store of learning. These different types, together 
with a few who, from time to time, were compelled to cut short 
their stay at Oxford for personal and family reasons, were only 
a tiny fraction of the whole body; and some of them, if they had 
had more patience, would have changed their point of view in 
time. The fact that they did not possess that patience and were 
not prepared to cultivate it (as the majority did), showed them 
to be so much the less fitted to be Rhodes Scholars. 

I do not agree with the popular view of Oxford as tempera- 
mentally conservative. On the contrary, it is, like so many 
venerable English institutions, remarkable for its capacity for 
self-adaptation to changing circumstances, and in my forty years 
of residence in it I have seen profound transformations in its 
whole way of life. Its lost causes' are for the most part 
picturesque hobbies, and new causes are born in it every 
minute many of them not very viable, but interesting infants 
all the same. Yet, to the Man from Snowy River or Main 
Street or Dorpsburg the eager young man who has been a 
considerable person in his own sphere and is now a mere 
'freshman', very much on probation in Oxford some of its 
sedate, old-fashioned ways are puzzling and irksome. The 
criticisms which spring to any keen young mind are by no means 
all unjustified. If he has any sense of proportion, however and 
above all, if he has any sense of humour (which few Rhodes 
Scholars lack) the neophyte will soon perceive that these minor 
anomalies (as they seem to him) are as dust in the balance against 
the 'imponderables' which he can absorb if his spirit is willing. 
The vast majority of Rhodes Scholars do this, and the effect is 
oimulative. By the end of their time, if they were given power 


to rationalize Oxford to extirpate prowling Proctors and mid- 
night curfew and fanged bottles on College walls and white ties 
and subfuscs and decanal discipline they would probably be more 
royalist than the king! The 'imponderables' are different for 
different men no two, I imagine, would define them in the 
same way, if they could define them at all. But there are several 
benefits, quite apart from academic equipment, which Oxford 
can impart to all intelligent and questing young men, of what- 
ever type or nationality. One is tolerance. I do not think there 
are irtany places in the world where opinion is so unfettered as 
in Oxford; and with this freedom goes, for the right-minded, 
the like freedom for others. In days of the mass-regimentation of 
opinion, this lesson is, or should be, a master-precept for the 
young. Another influence of Oxford which none but the very 
dull or unimpressionable can escape is its multifarious intellectual 
vitality. I do not think that this has ever been at a higher pitch 
than at present. It is a wonderful thing to have seen this ancient 
body twice spring to 'life more abundant* when wars had left it 
for dead, or at least half-dead; never was there more eloquent 
testimony that the indestructibility of matter is nothing to the 
indestructibility of mind. There is scarcely a taste or interest or 
pursuit which cannot find at Oxford soil to grow in; and the 
problem for many undergraduates is to choose wisely among the 
diversity of opportunities. They are seasoned, as they should be, 
with a due modicum of frivolity, to the end that wisdom be not 
always a sombre bird which only gkres and hoots, but sometimes 
a flutterer of lighter note and gayer plumage. 

In its academic fere, Oxford has one spedalitl de la maison 
which I think is extremely nutritious diet for most Rhodes 
Scholars. I do not know of any place whore the use of the 
English language is more sedulously disciplined than at Oxford. 
Looseness, verbosity or vulgarity of expression are of all things 
anathema, and it is, or ought to be, an axiom of tutorial instruc- 
tion that bad style is bad tiiinking. Now, it is no disrespect for 
I write as a 'Colonial' to say that in most other parts of the 
English-speaking world this aspect of education is not specially 


emphasized. Many Rjiodes Scholars at first find their tutors 
rather niggling and fussy critics, but they soon learn that what 
is in question is not mere minutiae of form but coherence of 
thought; and, if they take nothing else from Oxford, they will 
be in her debt if they have learned to weigh their words before 
committing them to speech or paper. 

The tutorial system is, of course, Oxford's />rte. Most Rhodes 
Scholars take to it kindly and believe in it. But it is not without 
its imperfections. All tutors are not equally good at tuition. 
Among the large number of College instructors it is obvious that 
there must be some who, whatever their ability, do not possess 
the gift of imparting thek knowledge; and the best teachers are 
not necessarily to be found (as is so often supposed) in the most 
famous Colleges. There is also the subtle and incalculable factor 
of personal compatibility between teacher and taught. Not a few 
Rhodes Scholars found themselves in tutorial difficulties of 
various kinds. It was an article of the unwritten code, which was 
seldom broken, that a Rhodes Scholar should not complain to 
me of his tutor; and, conversely, it was part of my code that 
such complaints, on the rare occasions when they occurred, were 
received 'with reserve', as diplomatists say. But from time to 
time it became obvious to me that a Rhodes Scholar was not 
getting on well with his tutor and that the fault was by no means 
all on one side. This was a delicate situation. It was perilous to 
interfere, or even give the appearance of doing so, in College 
tutorial arrangements. However, in several instances when the 
situation was acute, I took my courage in my hands and found 
that the Colleges concerned were sympathetic and ready to make 
tactful rearrangements which generally solved the problem. 
What is true of tutors also applies to the supervisors of research 
students. They differ greatly in competence and assiduity, and 
their appointment by Boards of Faculties sometimes seems to be 
rather haphazard. In this matter one was helpless and could only 
hope that the difficulty would solve itself by mutual consent to a 
change of supervisor. I have no doubt that the tutorial system is 
of immense benefit to most Rhodes Scholars, and I have heard 


many testimonies from them to its lasting value. Similarly, 
frequent personal contact with a supervisor who is a master of 
his subject may open up new worlds to a receptive research 
student. But I have sometimes felt that Oxford is a little too 
complacent about the invariable efficacy of its teaching methods, 
and \ have known a certain number of Rhodes Scholars who 
have had to manage, and have managed well, with little help 
from their instructors. As for lectures, I have known few men 
who have regarded them as the most beneficial part of their 
Oxford education. 

* * * 

Before the second war the situation changed for a time after 
it_the Rhodes Scholar was nearly always older than the English 
undergraduate. He was more mature in experience and worldly 
wisdom, though often I found him very ready to acknowledge 
that scholastically he was immature by comparison with the 
ablest type of youngster from a good English school Greater 
maturity in years and worldly wisdom tends to set the Rhodes 
Scholar a little apart from his English fellow-students and to drive 
him into the company of his own coevals and compatriots. 
Wylie has recorded that this tendency caused him some concern 
in early days, and I also regarded it with a little anxiety, but it 
diminished appreciably as time went on. Whether or not a 
Rhodes Scholar's comparatively advanced years affected his 
status depended to some extent on the attitude of his College. 
When I first went to Rhodes House there were one or two 
Colleges where discipline was of the old school and where all 
undergraduates, including Rhodes Scholars, were treated like 
schoolboys. A grown man from overseas who is severely 
berated for some trivial offence, such as walking on the sacred 
College turf (and I have known this happen), cannot help 
resenting die humiliation. There were several cases (though I 
could do nothing about them, except appeal to the sinner's sense 
of humour) in which I felt that unfortunate methods had been 
used and that a good man had been quite unnecessarily 


embittered, sometimes with lasting effect. Rhodes Scholars, I 
think, desire no special privileges on account of their maturity; 
they must conform to ordinary University and College rules, 
which, though they may seem, strange at first, are soon found to 
be neither unreasonable nor oppressive; but Colleges of latter 
years have become accustomed to the presence in their midst of 
many senior men besides Rhodes Scholars and have long since 
realized (though most, of course, have always realized) that they 
are not to be treated like children. 

Whether or not the Rhodes Scholar made real friends with 
his younger English fellow-student was so personal a matter that 
it defied any generalization. Men from distant lands are naturally 
anxious, while they have opportunity, to see Continental 
countries, and Rhodes Scholars were sometimes reproached 
by tutors with travelling too much, and too often, to the preju- 
dice of the vacation study which is an indispensable part of the 
Oxford system. There was some truth in this, and I sometimes 
wished that Rhodes Scholars would see more of the surprising 
variety of the British Isles, but one could not but sympathize with 
the desire to see other civilizations and to learn other languages, 
especially in days when travel was cheap and currency restrictions 
unknown. A large number of Rhodes Scholars enjoyed hospi- 
tality in English homes through the good offices of the Dominions 
Fellowship Trust, which grew out of Lady Frances Ryder's 
organization in the first war and was latterly under the chief 
direction and wise administration of Miss Macdonald of Sleat, 
C.B.E. In this way many lasting friendships were formed for 
which a cloud of witnesses are most grateful to this admirable 
organization. In pre-war times some Rhodes Scholars perhaps 
were a little discomposed by the unaccustomed formality which 
they found in the well-provided English country house; but the 
second war introduced great changes in economics, in social 
customs and in understanding of different national types, and I 
think that both hosts and guests found advantage in the less 
formal conditions which became general. The average Rhodes 
Scholar may have found it an amusing, and even an educational, 


experience to be waited on by a butler (for Jeeves, if he still 
exists, can be as capable a mentor as a good Oxford College 
servant); but he would generally prefer to be himself an amateur 
butler-cum-housemaid-cum-scullery-maid in the family, as all of 
us have to be nowadays in our own or other people's houses. 
Besides these visits so skilfully and solicitously arranged, there 
were many by private invitation from fellow-undergraduates to 
their homes, and in the post-war years these seemed to increase, 
despite the difficulty of hospitality. I knew also of many Rhodes 
Scholars who made permanent friendships, sometimes leading to 
life partnership, among families with which they stayed in 
England or abroad. All this, needless to say (not even excluding 
the matrimony), was in accord with Mr. Rhodes's principles of 
international understanding. 

When a Rhodes Scholar first comes to Oxford, he often has 
somewhat vague ideas about his course of study. The real 
meaning and actual working of the various Final Honour Schools 
at Oxford are not easily understood from books and official 
publications by a man thousands of miles away. Often he will 
not find his best course of study until he has come up and has been 
advised and diagnosed by his tutors. The result may be a 
regrettable loss of time. A Rhodes Scholar has only six, or at the 
most nine, academic terms before him, and it is a serious matter 
when any considerable part of them is occupied in preliminary 
skirmishing, or (as sometimes happens) by change from one 
subject to another. The responsibility for a Rhodes Scholar's 
instruction rests with his College, but the Warden of Rhodes 
House retains a general unofficial supervision, and no small or 
easy part of his duties is consultation with the College, and with 
the Scholar himself, about his appropriate choice of study. This 
applies even more forcibly to research students. Sometimes they 
come with projects which are either unacceptable or impractic- 
able, or perhaps both. Sometimes, again, they may want 
accommodation in a department or laboratory which is already 


overcrowded; this always had to be considered during the great 
influx which occurred after the second war. I made it my object, 
though not always with success, to ensure that every Rliodes 
Scholar who proposed research, especially in the natural sciences, 
obtained advice long before he came up, from his College and from 
the experts in his subject, about its practicability. Even with this 
preliminary negotiation, it is not always easy to get started on a 
research project without a good deal of experimental investiga- 
tion indeed, that is almost always necessary before the real 
substance of the study becomes crystallized. These preliminaries 
are sometimes unduly protracted, for in a thesis, as in all other 
forms of composition, c 9 est It premier mot qui coute; and it always 
distressed me when, as sometimes happened, a Rhodes Scholar 
left his research unfinished for lack of time, which is often the 
equivalent of lack of system. There was generally a pious 
resolution to come back and finish the work later, and this was 
often done, but equally often supervening circumstances made it 
impossible* This relativity of time in research is a constant 
problem, and it is difficult to say in any individual case whether 
delay and incompletion are due to the man himself (as I think is 
generally the fact), or to his subject, or to his supervision. I never 
found any solution, though I often ventured to warn the perfec- 
tionist against the dangers of contemplating rather than tackling 
his task and thus becoming unpregnant of his cause. 

Research in general became an increasingly important aspect 
of the Rliodes Scholarships. Wylie has described the establish- 
ment of the D.Phil, degree in 1919, and the controversy which 
accompanied it. More and more Rhodes Scholars, especially 
from the United States, desired to qualify as Advanced Students 
for the D.Phil.; some, less ambitious, aimed no higher than the 
BXitt or B.Sc, or, in recent years, the B.Phil., but it was the 
D.Phil, which was most sought after. There was a double reason 
for this. First, many Rhodes Scholars, already possessing aca- 
demic degrees in their own countries, were averse from taking a 
Final Honour School which led only to another B.A., and which 
they supposed (often quite wrongly) was merely repetition of 


work which they had already done. A more utilitarian motive 
was, and is, that for most university appointments in North 
America a doctorate is virtually indispensable, and Rhodes 
Scholars who intended an academic career naturally wished to 
leave Oxford with this qualification (irreverently known as the 
Bunion card* or 'meal ticket') instead of returning to the prospect 
of another preliminary year or two spent in obtaining it, at an 
advanced age, at home. This may not seem the purest ideal of 
learning, but one could not deny that it was eminently reasonable. 
It was to me and I dare say it always will be a thorny 
question whether the best Oxford education for a Rhodes 
Scholar was a post-graduate degree or a Final Honour School. 
There are some Rhodes Scholars who are so clearly advanced 
and qualified in their special subjects that it would be foolish to 
condemn them to undergraduate work, and throughout my time 
the proportion of such students increased. Much extremely able 
and profitable work has been done by Rhodes Scholars for 
research degrees and some of it has fructified in published scholar- 
ship of a high order. There wore others, with less solid ground- 
ing, whose ambitions outran their capacity, and who, as it seemed 
to me, would gain most by the discipline of the tutorial system; 
but it was often difficult to persuade them of this, and one had to 
let them learn it by personal and sometimes chastening experience 
of the high Oxford standards and by then, unfortunately, 
precious time had been lost and perhaps discouragement had 
supervened. It will hardly be denied that, on 'the whole, Oxford's 
special strength lies more in its tutorial system than in its super- 
vision of research, far-ranging and erudite (if variable) though 
the latter may be. The man who is living in College and working 
under a good tutor is much more likely than the specialist to get 
the characteristic flavour of Oxford and to swim with the main 
current of its life. Probably the most highly-developed research 
technique of Oxford is to be found in the natural sciences, where 
it is, indeed, an integral part of training; but even here there is 
a danger that a Rhodes Scholar may become so much tied to his 
laboratory that he is alienated from the more miscellaneous, but 


decidedly educative, activities of undergraduate life. (I do not 
say that this necessarily happens many times, to my knowledge, 
it has not happened; I merely say that it is a danger to be reckoned 
with.) In this competition of alternatives the choice was often 
perplexing; I could not, of course, advise when there were at 
issue technical questions beyond my competence; nevertheless, I 
will presumptuously say, even if I incur reproach, that I some- 
times backed my own judgment against that of the College, the 
tutor or even the faculty, and not seldom I proved right. But 
with the experts, of course, lay the decision, and they were often 
divided among themselves. Some were inflexible adherents of 
the Final Honour Schools in nearly all cases; others seemed to 
me to tend to push Rhodes Scholars into advanced work on 
insufficient evidence. The faculties, again, varied greatly in the 
qualifications which they required for admission to research. 
This, I think, was increasingly realized, and towards the end of 
my time there was a growing tendency to follow the example of 
the Final Honour School of English Language and Literature and 
to require applicants to pass qualifying tests before admission to 
advanced work. Some filter of this kind has been made necessary 
by the constantly swelling number of aspirants to post-graduate 
degrees. One other aspect of this matter must be mentioned in 
candour namely, that the standard for these degrees varies with 
different subjects. It is notoriously more difficult to obtain a 
D.Phil in some faculties than in others. The same may apply to 
First Classes in different Final Honour Schools, though not, I 
think, to anything like the same degree. 

Whatever the problems surrounding this question of research, 
post-graduate work attracts an increasing proportion of Rhodes 
Scholars. The number grew apace after the second war. I find 
that during the years 1947 to 1953 the percentage of Rhodes 
Scholars reading for research degrees was between 30 and 41. In 
1948-49 it was 40 per cent, in the following year 41 and in the 
last statistical year which I have taken (1952-53) it is again 40 (65 
research students out of 163 in residence). A striking fact is that 
out of these advanced students an average of 48 per cent., or nearly 


a half, are engaged in one or other of the natural sciences. This is a 
vast change from Sir Francis Wylie's day, and is another evidence 
of the prodigious scientific development of Oxford within a 

I turn to the subjects of study in the Final Honour Schools. 
In general, it may be said that there is not one of them which 
Rhodes Scholars have not taken at one time or another, and this 
does not exclude esoteric subjects like Arabic and Chinese in the 
School of Oriental Studies. Wylie has narrated how in early 
days the preponderance was in Law. I fully endorse what he has 
said about the influence of Rhodes Scholars in stimulating the 
expansion of legal studies in Oxford. The Faculty of Law is 
now very different from what it was even in 1919, when I first 
attempted to teach Law, and when there were still comparatively 
few Law Fellows in the Colleges. Possibly the growth of the 
subject and the increase of teachers wore a natural evolution 
which would have happened in any case, but the needs of Rhodes 
Scholars hastened the process, though by 193 1 there was certainly 
no further suggestion of the Rhodes Trustees specially endowing 
legal learning. There was always one feature of Jurisprudence 
and the B.C.L. which particularly affected Rhodes Scholars and 
which I think Wylie has not mentioned, though it was well 
known to him. These disciplines at Oxford lay considerable 
stress on Roman Law and require a knowledge of Latin texts. 
Latin, regrettably, is a sad deficiency in the education of many 
Rhodes Scholars, and Roman Law is a formidable undertaking 
for them, nor is it always easy to persuade them that it is a 
salutary mental exercise. Most of them outfaced the giant, if they 
did not actually slay him with their exiguous pebbles; and I have 
known some who, not knowing more Latin than mensa and amo 
when they came to Oxford, performed notable feats of valour 
(or was it low cunning?) against Gaius and Justinian. When I 
think of some of the earliest Rhodes Scholars who, in this penury 
of classical training, had somehow to acquire Greek for Respon- 


sions and Latin for Jurisprudence, I marvel at their audacity no 
less than at their agility. Perhaps they said to themselves that if 
Shakespeare could write his plays with small Latin and less Greek, 
a Rhodes Scholar could defeat die Oxford examiners with even 
less; and that is the spirit which Cecil Rhodes, the disciple of 
Aristotle and the student of the Emperors, would doubtless have 
approved. I remember a distinguished jurist, when a member of 
his seminar who had been assigned a task demurred that he could 
not do it because he knew no German, remarking quietly: 'You 
will kindly know some by our first meeting next term*. That is 
Oxford; that is any good University. 

As will appear, a large proportion of Rhodes Scholars have 
followed the profession of the law, many with conspicuous 
success; but the suzerainty of law among their subjects of study 
at Oxford has declined in favour of the modern school of Philo- 
sophy, Politics and Economics, or 'Modern Greats'. In the recent 
six-year period which I have mentioned (1947 to 1953 ) there have 
always been more men reading P.P.E. than Jurisprudence and 
B.C.L. (taken together), and the gap seems to be widening. No 
other School claims anything like so many, though the natural 
sciences and English come within hailing distance. I observed 
among Rhodes Scholars, even before the war, a very marked 
growth of interest in social studies, economics and international 
relations. This applies particularly to American Rhodes Scholars. 
In my first years most of them seemed to regard national politics 
and foreign relations with a certain detachment, content on the 
whole with the law of nature 

That every boy and every gal 
That's born into the world alive 

is either a little Republican or else a little Democrat. The Roose- 
velt Revolution produced an unmistakable change. Thereafter 
every intelligent young American, as represented by the Rhodes 
Scholars, was re-tiiinking the traditional ideas, and there was an 
intellectual ferment about many national and international ques- 
tions which had formerly been taken for granted. All this, 


needless to say, was much intensified by the second war and by 
the changed international role of the United States. Naturally, 
then, many inquiring minds turned to social studies at Oxford, 
either in research or in the School of P.P.E. "In nothing was the 
New Look more manifest than in Economics, in which a succes- 
sion of Rhodes Schokrs have done first-rate work. There have 
been a few pioneers in the new School of Physiology, Psychology 
and Philosophy, and they will probably grow in number. For 
those few who hanker after the controverted science of Sociology 
Oxford does not cater. 

It was under the 1929 Act that the new generation of German 
Rhodes Scholars came to Oxford, at the rate of two annually, 
instead of the five per year provided for in Mr. Rhodes's Will. 
Eighteen were elected between 1930 and 1939. Under a totali- 
tarian regime it is difficult to keep any organization uninfluenced 
by all-pervading power, and there were disquieting hints from 
time to time of insidious attempts upon the independence of the 
Selection Committee. It was obvious, for example, to anybody 
who had to deal with him, that the then German Ambassador, 
Ribbentrop, looked with little favour on a group of young men 
who were not avowed missionaries of Nazism. In those circum- 
stances it was greatly to the credit of the Selection Committee 
in Berlin that, so far as was possible in the Germany of that 
period, it maintained its independence of judgment and elected 
on merit alone. This was due not only to the courageous spirit 
of the old Rhodes Scholars who constituted the Committee but, 
I doubt not, to the influence of its wise and venerable chairman, 
Dr. Schmidt-Ott. I attended one of its sessions in 1932 and was 
much impressed by the judicious and painstaking spirit of its 

If the dictatorship ever hoped to Na2dy the Rhodes Scholar- 
ships, it certainly did not succeed. I do not think that any German 
Rhodes Scholar of the second dispensation was a convinced or 
militant Nazi. In the early days of die regime some were disposed 


to defend what seemed to them, and indeed to some non- 
Gernians, its possible merits and promise; but that was natural 
enough before the cloven hoof had fully shown itself. Others 
who had returned to Germany had no option but to fight for 
their country; four of them lost their lives in doing so and two 
fell into our hands as prisoners of war, one of them being a 
distinguished tank general who was never thought of by his 
adversaries as a *war criminal' but as a gallant and efficient 
professional soldier. As for the remainder, practically all were 
not merely unsympathetic to Hitlerism but definitely opposed to 
it. They were in a difficult position at Oxford; they had evidence 
that they were being jealously watched and probably spied upon 
by the authorities in Germany; it required considerable courage 
to maintain their attitude, and great discretion was necessary in 
their demeanour and opinions. I was never quite certain of what 
was going on behind the scenes, because I too had to exercise 
discretion and never cared nor had I the right to probe into 
matters which might have been embarrassing to them. I learned 
of the difficulties only when the men voluntarily sought my 
confidence. On several occasions I found that vague suggestions 
of Nazi sympathies or activities which were made against several 
men were quite groundless and irresponsible. 

At all events, when war actually came, there was no doubt 
about those sympathies. Most of the Scholars who were in 
England or abroad refused to return to Germany to fight for a 
cause in which they did not believe. They suffered uncomplain- 
ingly the hardships of internment and the shafts of suspicion 
which they knew were inevitable, and eventually they were able 
to work, in not very attractive capacities, for the Allied cause. 
A number have adopted British nationality at the earliest oppor- 
tunity. Several were in the United States at the outbreak of war 
and remained in that country; one of these acquired American 
nationality and fought with the United States forces, suffering a 
severe wound. Of the older scholars in Germany, two at least 
gave their lives for their anti-Nazi beliefs. Count Albrecht 
Bernstorff suffered horrible death for the convictions which he 


had never disguised. It is now known that Adam von Trott zu 
Solz, while holding an official position in Germany, was for years 
working in secret and at the utmost peril for the downfall of 
Hitler and all his works; he was deeply involved in the abortive 
'Bomb Plot' and paid the penalty for it by the Gestapo form of 
death. His young wife and family were also condemned to 
butchery and escaped only by a miracle. There is reason to think 
that other German Rhodes Scholars may have laboured covertly 
against the despotism, but it is impossible to verify all the facts. 
One of the early Rhodes Scholars who remained in his minis- 
terial post under the Nazi Government was tried and convicted 
after the war by a Military Tribunal and sentenced to a term of 
imprisonment. No other was ever officially identified with 
Hitler's rule. 

Among the visions of Cecil Rhodes, perhaps the boldest was 
that of a great tripartite bloc which might secure permanently the 
peace of the world. Was it daring to the point of mere fantasy? 
It might not have proved so if reason and not passion had pre- 
vailed; but the tragedy was that the jackboot twice trampled on 
the dream, which now Hes in jagged fragments for posterity to 
sweep up. To that extent the Founder's ambitious aim has been 
frustrated; but so far as his individual German beneficiaries are 
concerned, I wholly agree with Wylie that Rhodes's hopes have 
not proved sterile. 

I make one last reference to topics broached by my predecessor. 
He has explained that the annual dinners are a specific part of 
Mr. Rhodes's benefaction and that they suffered somewhat in 
early days from lack of a settled milieu. This they found as soon 
as Rjiodes House was a 'going concern*. Before long ladies who 
(as has been related) had been accustomed to sit timidly in the 
gallery in a kind of purdah, became guests, thus tempering with 
grace and sedateness what had been a masculine monopoly of 
conviviality. Though they gained notably in this respect, the 
dinners continued for some time to suffer from the affliction of 


all public dinners superabundant oratory from a long list of 
distinguished guests. This came to a climax when an eminent 
public personage devoted ten minutes to explaining that he had 
been asked to speak for ten minutes and then went on to tell the 
story of his life until nearly midnight. Thereafter the Trustees 
decided that the occasion should be more domestic and less 
rhetorical. The custom for a good many years past has been to 
have only one speech from the presiding Trustee of welcome to 
the Freshmen in the Michaelmas Term and of farewell and 
God-speed to those departing in the summer. For the rest, the 
dinner is a gathering of friends and brethren who are getting to 
know each other, and the guests include any old Rhodes Scholars 
who may be visiting England or who are resident in Oxford, 
together with representative Oxford people who are likely to 
show the Rhodes Scholars interest and friendship. This seems to 
be in accord with the Founder's intention in providing these 

I have one evil memory of them. In the lean period after the 
second war it was exceedingly difficult to obtain either food or 
catering for any large number. I am still haunted in my dreams 
by some of the meals which at that time I had to offer the Trustees' 
guests. A brighter day came, to my immense relief, when it was 
possible to replace the dinner of herbs, if not with the stalled ox, 
at least with acceptable fare. And one comfort I always had. 
Soon after I came to Rhodes House the Trustees decided to lay 
down a cellar of their own wines in the ample accommodation 
which the building provided. Even in the dark days, therefore, 
whatever the solids, the liquids were good. They still are and I 
hope they always will be. Many of those pre-war wines still 
remain, and when I think of their cost then and now, I respectfully 
salute the foresight of the Trustees in making such a good invest- 
ment. Never again shall we see the day when a hogshead of 
two-year-old vintage claret will cost, f.o.b. France, an average of 
335. 6d. per dozen I 


(Indiana and Brasenose, 1903) 
American Secretary, 1918-1952 
From the portrait by Edward Halliday 
in Rhodes House 


(Victoria and Hertford, 1904) 
Australian Secretary, 1922-1952 

A. H. GIE, 

(Sooth African College School 

and University, 1916) 

South African Secretary since 1946 

(Alberta and Hertford, 1919) 
Canadian Secretary since 1936 



FROM these general and rambling observations about the 
Rhodes Scholarships I turn to a brief chronology of events 
and developments between 1931 and 1952. Here I must confess 
my shortcomings. I have never kept a diary, nor have I my 
predecessor's unerring memory for people, things and places. 
I acknowledge gratefully the assistance and censorship of my 
wife, who has a far better memory for dates and details than I 
have. With these reservations I will try to record those happen- 
ings which stand out most clearly in my mind. 

* * * 

The Secretary of the Trust in 1931 was Philip Ken:, who was 
soon to succeed to the title of Marquess of Lothian. We were to 
remain his colleagues for eight years, and it was a most stimu- 
lating experience. I have known few men who possessed, 
besides great charm of character and sympathy, a quicker grasp 
of essentials. His interests and responsibilities, outside the Rhodes 
Trust, multiplied as time went on, and for a short and uneasy 
period he held office in the 'Emergency* National Government as 
Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and then as Under 
Secretary of State for India; but he was always accessible and he 
had the gift of concentrating into a few hours work which would 
have taken most people as many days. No concern was nearer 
to his heart than the Rhodes Scholarships, for he believed deeply 
in their international significance. The great landed estate which 
he inherited (not without embarrassment) included the beautiful 
house of Blickling in Norfolk, and there, either on Rhodes 
business or on holiday, we spent many delectable days which 
are among OUT most treasured memories. In any difficulty, 
official or personal, he was the most wise, sympathetic and candid 

M 161 


counsellor. The war brought him the greatest opportunity of his 
life and as Ambassador, at a most critical time in Anglo-American 
relations, he found full scope for his talents and his sagacity. In 
that great office, when he seemed to be in full vigour (we had 
seen him on the day when he set out on his last journey to 
America), he died suddenly and left my wife and myself, among 
countless others, with a sense of lasting bereavement. He was a 
man who combined a deep-seated idealism with a realistic and 
humorous understanding of human nature as it is. There are not 
many such. 

He was succeeded by the present Secretary, Lord Elton, with 
whom we collaborated, in war and peace, until our departure. 
To spare his blushes, I will only say that I hope the association 
was as pleasant and harmonious to him as it was to us. 

By the year 193 1 peace was piping a little less confidently than 
in the twenties. The League of Nations had shown its gaping 
fissures, the international outlook was unsettled and the economic 
blizzard, whistling round the world, had hit us with full force. 
It was problematical how it would affect the Universities in 
general and Rhodes Scholars in particular. There was a period 
of stringency and a campaign of national economy. The storm 
blew over and the worst apprehensions were falsified; I do not 
think that Rhodes Scholars of that period were greatly affected, 
beyond suffering the not very formidable degree of deprivation 
which was common to all. But there was another storm brewing, 
though many people in England and elsewhere refused to see it. 
From 1934 onwards the Hitler menace became unmistakable 
until it mounted to the climax of Munich in 1938. Calm was 
maintained, but the imminence of the threat took one very 
realistic form the whole population of Oxford was issued with 
gas respirators and many citizens began to be trained in Air Raid 
Precautions, first aid and other 'emergency' measures. (Strange 
to reflect that the chief emphasis, at that time, was laid on poison 
gas, which, in the event, no belligerent used.) Mr. Chamberlain, 


however, brought back 'peace with honour', and the menace 
seemed to pass but not to the reassurance of anybody who had 
formed a true estimate of the policy and purposes of Adolf Hitler. 
In the Long Vacation of 1939 I exhorted all Rhodes Scholars 
who were going abroad to make for home at the first serious 
threat of trouble. (My family and myself got out of France only 
at the eleventh hour.) I think most of the Rhodes Scholars 
regarded nie merely as a croaking raven. At all events, when 
war came they were scattered all over Europe, some of them as 
far as Russia and Finland. I will not recount the complications 
of getting them all back, in some instances only through the 
exertions of consuls and the good offices of neutral countries, but 
it was an intricate process until they were all accounted for. 
When the flock was assembled, it numbered eighty a group 
with a highly unsettled prospect before it. 

Wylie has described the uncertainties which existed at the 
outbreak of the first world war. They were even more acute in 
I939> but there was a little more time to cope with them than in 
1914. I dislike the term 'phoney war', for it is a cheap mis- 
representation, but at all events the full impact of fiightfulness 
was not felt in England in the early stages. The University of 
Oxford had at least a breathing-space to work out a policy, and 
it adopted one which proved far more beneficial than that of the 
preceding war. Throughout that earlier crisis the University 
practically suspended animation and was taken over almost 
entirely for war purposes. In 1939 it was decided that Oxford 
should, as far and as long as possible, continue to carry out its 
academic mission, combining it with many practical war activi- 
ties. About half the Colleges were assigned to 'emergency' 
purposes, chiefly administrative and medical. In the other half 
of the buildings the undergraduates 'doubled up'. Except those 
specially exempt or reserved for one reason or another, all were 
conscripted and most were taking special courses, leading to 
'war degrees', before going, in their turn, into one or other 
branch of national service. It was expected that during this 
interim they would take their studies somewhat lightly, but it 


proved otherwise, and teaching and learning were taken seriously 
by nearly all, though tutorial resources were much depleted by 
the departure of many dons for active service or other kindred 


The policy proved to be highly successful. It is a remarkable 
achievement, on which Oxford may always congratulate itself, 
that throughout the war there were always between 1,500 and 
2,000 undergraduates educating themselves while on the brink of 
life-and-death hazard. The vast amount of other and warlike 
work, especially in the sciences, which was done within the 
University does not belong to this story, but it is well known to 
have been of capital importance. 

The physical threat, however, always hung overhead. Oxford 
could have been attacked with devastating effect, for in the early 
days it was almost defenceless and at no time would it have been 
able to withstand a concentrated assault. It was an industrial 
centre of some importance, and it was on the high road to the 
great war manufactories of the Midlands. Night after night the 
siren wailed and the upper air throbbed and hummed, not least 
on that brilliant moonlit night when Coventry was laid in ruins, 
Many bombs fell in the surrounding country, though with little 
damage. Nevertheless, the University and City of Oxford were 
spared, for reasons which will always be matter of speculation. 
The vulnerability of every building had to be considered care- 
fully, and one of the first questions for the Trustees was, what 
was to happen to Rltodes House? There was some suggestion 
at first that it might be converted into a hospital, but it proved 
to be structurally unsuitable for that purpose. At one stage it was 
proposed to move all the books from the Library, but this measure 
was postponed fortunately, as it turned out, for the Library 
proved to be of great utility to certain official departments 
temporarily in Oxford, and it was in constant use throughout the 
war. In the event, the building was not taken over by authority, 
and it assumed a curiously manifold character which presently 
I will try to describe. 


Even more important was the question, what was to happen 
to the Rhodes Scholarships and Scholars? The Trustees refrained 
from any decision which might have proved precipitate, and 
their caution was justified by the sequel, for the matter was soon 
decided by the force of events. As I have mentioned, there were 
eighty RJiodes Scholars in residence when war broke out; by 
the end of the academic year in 1940 there were only seventeen. 
The great majority of the British Scholars had returned to their 
own countries or taken service in England. The Americans were 
in a difficult position. Their country was at that period neutral 
and the law governing them was strict, though for a time it was 
uncertain how rigorously it would be applied. The United States 
Government, however, soon made it clear that American 
nationals would remain in belligerent countries only at the peril 
of themselves and of their citizenship. So began the Book of 
Exodus, for Rhodes Scholars as for all their compatriots. On 
June 14, 1940, thirteen of those who remained had to leave 
Oxford, in no little haste, since the ship which was to carry 
them was, as the United States Government had announced, 
the last available to convey American nationals homewards. It 
sailed from Ireland and I shall not readily forget nor will ^ the 
Rhodes Scholars concerned the arrangements for that sailing- 
party, which was nearly left on the shores of Eire to contem- 
plate the Atlantic for the remainder of the war. I am sure that 
the Mayflower expedition was a masterpiece of staff work by 
comparison with the official administrative arrangements for the 
voyage of those Pilgrim Sons. However, they made their way 
back without mishap, though in extreme discomfort. We 
saw them off with heavy hearts, and they too were oppressed by 
their helplessness in the then situation; but I am happy to say 
that we saw not a few of them both during and after the war, 
and were even able to welcome some of them back to resume 
their studies when peace returned. A number of the men who 
returned to the United States in June 1940 were on the brink 
of taking their Final Examinations. The arrangements which 


were made for them are described by Dr. Aydelotte. I 
doubt whether there is any similar incident in the history of 
Oxford examinations. The experiment worked quite smoothly 
and enabled this group of Rhodes Scholars to obtain Oxford 
degrees which otherwise war would have snatched from them. 

Thereafter a few elections were made, for special reasons, in 
several of the smaller constituencies, but the Scholars dwindled 
until by 1942 there was only one in residence, and for all practical 
purposes the Scholarships were in suspense throughout the rest of 
the war. I cannot attempt here to give anything like an adequate 
account of the war service of Rhodes Scholars, beyond noting 1 
some statistics of those who took part in one or both of the two 
world wars. I have compiled what I fear is a very incomplete 
record of some of the distinctions which they won, and for 
die rest I need only say that many of them reached high 
commands and discharged important responsibilities either in the 
field or on the multifarious administrative side of the war effort. 
Some undertook those astonishing feats of the secret services 
which beggar all fiction and which must remain, for the most 
part, sealed books. Of those who were unlucky enough to fall 
prisoners of war most survived, despite drastic experiences, with 
remarkably little permanent damage. 

There was another party to which we had to bid a sorrowful 
farewell. In June 1940 very generous invitations were received 
from the Universities of Yale and Swarthmore in the United 
States, and from Toronto in Canada, to receive and shelter a 
group of Oxford children and mothers. The arrangements were 
made by a committee at Rhodes House, and they had to be 
settled in haste and under certain difficulties which inevitably 
arose from back-and-forth communications at long range. 
Details would be tedious, but on July 8, 1940, a party of 125 
Oxford children and twenty-five mothers set forth across the 
Atlantic, to be distributed to their different destinations and 

i See p. 220. 


temporary homes. This fine act of succour and benevolence 
would fall outside my theme were it not that former Rhodes 
Scholars had a large share in its inception and management, 
though there are many others to whom an equal debt is owed. 
Many of the children remained overseas and had their schooling 
throughout the whole war, establishing permanent ties with 
North America; a few have married and settled there. For their 
unstinted hospitality the foster-parents expected no return and 
deprecated any attempt to make it, but the Oxford parents, by 
forming a trust fund, despite every possible Treasury obstacle, 
were able after the war to make some small thank-offering by 
bringing American and Canadian students on visits to Oxford. 
Besides this Youth Movement outwards there was another, 
and a memorable one, inwards. The dark day came, in Septem- 
ber 1940, when the invasion of England was thought to be 
imminent and there was a shift of population from those districts 
which lay in the invader's probable path. A large number were 
transferred from Kent to Oxford and billeting provision for 
them had to be improvised by the local authority in the utmost 
haste. It may be imagined that it was not easily contrived in the 
already overcrowded conditions of Oxford. Some 'transit* depots 
were necessary until permanent arrangements could be made, 
and Rhodes House offered to serve as one of these. Over a 
hundred women and children, ranging in age from seventy- 
eight years to three weeks, found shelter there for ten days. 
They had been expected during the day, but they did not arrive 
until late on a black, streaming September night in 1940, after 
travelling from early morning with little food or warmth. I 
shall never forget die uncomplaining patience of young and old. 
Uprooted from their homes and hurriedly dispatched into the 
uniknown, they cannot have been a happy band of pilgrims when 
at last Oxford greeted them with a relentless downpour, but they 
endured all with stoicism not unmingled with humour. They 
were all humble folk who asked nothing of life but to pursue 
unmolested their 'noiseless tenor*, but one recognized in them 


the spirit which, as much as feats of arms, made victory certain 
in the end. 

There were no beds for them at Rhodes House, but a band of 
women workers, organized by my wife, had somehow assembled 
a collection of palliasses. Mattresses, however, are more difficult 
to make without straw than bricks, and in all Oxford there seemed 
to be no straw. It was procured, I forget how, at the last moment, 
and the Milner Hall, spread from end to end with these makeshift 
couches, became a dormitory for these 112 'displaced persons'. 
The Beit and Jameson Rooms were converted into refectory, 
living-room and Red Cross centre, and before long it almost 
seemed that *a good time was had by all' at all events, a com- 
munal life went on with no serious contretemps and few jars or 
jangles. For ten days children of all ages were running freely 
about the building, and when the party had gone not a ha'porth 
of damage had been done, not even to the sensitive oak panelling 
in which Rhodes House abounds. When the time canie for 
departure to permanent billets throughout Oxford, there was a 
touching little ceremony. The mothers, none of them well off, 
collected a little sum of money to be given to an Oxford charity 
by way of thanks for shelter and care. The offering was made 
with a simple grace which struck me as one of the best examples 
of natural courtesy I have ever encountered. 

The transients went their several ways, but one family of a 
mother and three daughters, two of them twins, found their 
billet unavailable, the landlady having died. They came in 
distress to Rhodes House and quarters were provided for them 
on the top floor of the Warden's house until they could find 
another billet, which they expected to do in a few days. They 
came for the week-end and stayed for five years ! The towardly 
twins grew in beauty side by side, and when we last saw them 
one was a well-poised wife and mother and the other an accom- 
plished aad prosperous 'beautician*. This was a benefaction 
which I think Mr. Rhodes never contemplated. 

These were not the only feminine guests of Mr. Rhodes. In 
September 1939 one of the Girls' High Schools in London was 


evacuated to Oxford and absorbed into the High School there. 
Again arose the question of billeting. For the rest of the war 
four or five of these maidens in uniform lived with us at Rhodes 
House. They have remained our friends and we have followed 
their development from the raw material which they were dien 
to the finished in some cases highly finished products which 
they are now. My wife was mother-in-duef to them all, and 
they were not, nor have they remained, ungrateful daughters. 
As for me, in twenty-one years I learned, I hope, something of 
the psychology of young men; but during the war I also learned 
enough of adolescent feminine psychology to qualify me to set 
up a clinic. I regard it as a most valuable part of my education. 
I could even, if put to it, write a novel about woman-in-the- 
making; but I will not be put to it at my time of life. My general 
conclusion, which I offer to all psychologists in case they have 
not thought of it for themselves, is that the female is by far the 

stronger sex. 

* * * 

These are all trivial matters hardly worth recording, it may 
be thought, in the vast chronicle of war but I mention them to 
show the manner in which the building which the Trustees had 
dedicated to the service of Oxford was ministering, in its humble 
way, to war's manifold needs and duties. There was a more 
martial aspect of diem. The Civil Defence service of Oxford 
grew rapidly and the large basement of Rhodes House offered a 
most appropriate place for one of its many branches. It was 
equipped and fortified by the local authority to this day some 
of its 'temporary' baffle-walls remain and became a post where 
the solid concrete overhead was much appreciated, though 
fortunately it was never put to the test of high explosive. Down in 
that catacomb many sleepless nights were spent and innumerable 
patrols, men and women, set forth on their rounds. Notwith- 
standing the spiteful precision of the siren in summoning one 
from bed as soon as one had got into it, those weary nights 
somehow do not seem unhappy in retrospect. There was a 


comradesliip among the wardens, and an unaffected democratic 
mixture of elements, which sprang from the spontaneous com- 
munity of effort, and which are very pleasant to remember. 
Whatever may be going on in the welkin, you can conceive a 
great liking and respect for many different types of your fellow- 
creatures over a cup of tea and a cigarette at the dead of night. 
It was, by the way, tea and tobacco which won the war on the 
home front. 

Rhodes House itself was vulnerable to incendiary attack and 
needed its own measures of protection. Of the few Rhodes 
Scholars who remained, nearly all were medical students or 
reserved scientists. It was arranged that a group of them should 
be lodged in the western wing of the building in the Hawksley 
Room, which was converted into a dormitory. Thus a perman- 
ent fire-guard of the young and active was provided. A static 
water-tank, with mobile pump, was constructed in the southern 
quadrangle, and the resident male fire-spotters were reinforced 
by a squad of young women from a neighbouring War Office 
department.. They showed themselves in no way inferior to the 
men in scaling ladders and in Alpine exploits on the roof 

The Milner Hall and the other public rooms were in constant 
demand far more than could have been expected at the begin- 
ning for all kinds of purposes connected with the war effort, 
not least Red Cross training. The enthusiastic volunteers 
bandaged, splinted, shocked and resuscitated each other until the 
Milner Hall presented a scene of havoc which few casualty wards 
could match. It was not long before even more realistic victims 
of war appeared. They were principally die survivors of Dun- 
kirk, some of whom were in hospital at Oxford. From June to 
September 1940 parties of them came daily to Rhodes House 
weekly from October onwards to enjoy a change from hospital 
atmosphere and to bask, read, play games or just relax on the 
lawns and in the public rooms. At that time the New Theatre 
was presenting twice-nightly variety performances, and the 


artists, responding readily to the good offices of the General 
Manager of the theatre, Mr. Stanley Dorrill, M.B.E., were most 
generous (as their profession always Is) in coming repeatedly to 
entertain the soldiers in the Beit Room. Many of those afternoons 
in the summer of 1940 were sunlit and tranquil, except for the 
aircraft constantly circling overhead, and we like to think that 
the men of Dunkirk found in an Oxford garden some soothing 
contrast to the dreadful ordeal which they had survived only by 
a miracle. 

There were many Canadian troops in England, and we know 
now what neither they nor we could be told then that they 
were, except for the Home Guard, virtually our only defence 
against invasion. Their temporary inactive role, however, was 
irksome and disappointing to them and many efforts were made 
to mitigate its tedium. Oxford was for them, as for all overseas 
visitors, one of the 'objects of interest*, and for the greater part 
of 1940 and 1941 a party of about a hundred Canadian service- 
men came by road every Sunday to Rhodes House, where they 
were fed and then shown something of Oxford by a contingent 
of volunteer guides. Commissariat was not always easy. It was 
amply provided by the Canadian Army, but occasionally the 
rations went astray en route. At least twice it was necessary to 
improvise from store a meal for a hundred hungry men, I have 
never understood how this was done, but done it was. Under- 
done would perhaps be a better word for the vast joints of raw 
meat which,, on another occasion, arrived at about 12.30 p.m. 
for the men's Sunday dinner at i.o p.m. These little 'technical 
hitches' added to gaiety and were, needless to say, amply com- 
pensated later. From our own authorities of the Ministry of 
Food we never succeeded in extracting any special ration allow- 
ance for the constant entertainment which was our pleasure as well 
as our duty during the war. 

These experiments developed on a larger scale. In July 1942 
an informal committee of which Professor A. L. Goodhart (now 


Master of University College), Captain (now Professor) H. G. 
Hanbury and my wife were the moving spirits, felt that the time 
was ripe for a more extensive organization of hospitality, and 
arrangements were made with the Canadian military authorities 
for regular leave-courses. Parties of about fifty Canadians came to 
Oxford each week, staying in Colleges and joining in sightseeing, 
excursions, 'Brains Trust' discussions and social engagements, one 
of which was a dance at Rhodes House each Tuesday. By this 
time there were many American troops in, or passing through, 
England and dances at Rhodes House were provided for them 
also. The Trustees also financed an Information Bureau in the 
city for the benefit of all troops, and especially Americans, until 
a centre of the American Red Cross was established at the 
Clarendon Hotel There was also in the country an increasing 
number of representatives of our European allies, especially Poles, 
and in the autumn of 1942 there began at Rhodes House a regular 
series of dances for Polish officers and other ranks. Many of these, 
we found, had escaped from prison camps and made the most 
extraordinary journeys round the world before reaching England. 
Their stories of sufferings, perils and escapes were beyond any 
imaginings of fiction. 

A! these efforts were entirely voluntary and unofficial, but by 
August 1943 it was dt that an organization more representative 
of die University was overdue. The then Master of BaUiol, the 
late Lord Lindsay of Birker, took the lead; a committee was 
formed, Balliol College generously offered itself as residence and 
headquarters for the courses, and the services of Mr. Giles Aling- 
ton (now Fellow and Dean of University College) were obtained 
as general director of the scheme. From this date until the end 
of the war the 'Balliol courses' were a flourishing concern. Each 
week a party of some eighty honorary Oxonians came into 
residence for hospitality blended of the cultural and the social. 
They were selected, on their own applications, from various 
Allied forces in England American, British Commonwealth and 
a few Continental; they were of both sexes and colours and they 
ranged in rank from generals to private soldiers. There was 


scarcely any flavour of military discipline; aU met on an equal 
footing as guests and friends; and these eyes have seen -what I 
think must be a unique spectacle a British general lacing up the 
shoes of a Canadian private, without die smallest embarrassment 
on either side. A series of lectures and discussions on current 
topics was provided by members of the University, and spon- 
taneous interchanges of 'viewpoints* went on perpetually between 
individuals and groups. These "were completely frank and un- 
inhibited, but good-humoured, and I am sure that they conduced 
to more international understanding than many more august 
conclaves. On the whole, this experiment was a great success 
and has been remembered ever since with appreciation by those 
who shared in it. Rhodes House was its ally in any services it 
could render, and one of the standing social engagements was 
die Tuesday dance, for 200 or more, in the Milner Hall. The 
popular tunes of the time which I heard so often are engraved on 
the tablets of my heart. They are dead long since, for dance tunes 
have but a short time to live; but now and then one rises fr om- 
its grave and back I go to 1943 and to those strange slouches 
and gyrations which in this age go by the name of dancing. The 
portrait of Cecil Rhodes looked on them with apparently un- 
ruffled composure. Rhodes House was one of the few places in 
Oxford which at that time could boast a dance floor; and it had 
another modem convenience which was extremely popular 
namely, its seven bathrooms. There was always a queue, of all 
ranks, for these, and Rhodes House did its best, in the hallowed 
phrase, to 'keep the party clean*. 



AND so the war went on, with these and many other activities 
which it would be tedious to mention, until peace came at 
last. But peace hath her problems, as well as her victories, no 
less renowned than war. 

It had always been the intention of the Trustees to make up as 
soon as possible for the Scholarships which had been suspended 
by the war, and when VJ Day carne and all hostilities were over 
it was decided to double the number of Scholarships in most 
constituencies. But there were many new factors to be con- 
sidered. It takes some little time to start the machinery for 
competition and selection. The most elaborate machinery is in 
America, with its forty-eight States and fifty-six Selection Com- 
mittees, and in that country it proved impossible within the time 
available to make arrangements for elections for Michaelmas 
Term, 1946* There were still a number of potential candidates on 
service who could not expect to be released in time to compete 
in their own countries. There were the men who had been 
elected for 1939 and had not been able to take up their Scholar- 
ships, besides those who had had to interrupt the Scholarships 
which they already held at Oxford. All these had to be given the 
opportunity of beginning or resuming residence. The age limits 
for candidates had been, for a long time past, nineteen to twenty- 
five years, but many 'who might have competed but for the war 
were now past twenty-five. Of these not a few were married. 
It was also a question which could not be answered in 1945 how 
many additional overseas men Oxford could absorb. It was 
certain that a great influx would follow demobilization and, since 
Oxford consists almost entirely of residential Colleges, its Lebens- 
raum is limited. In the result it achieved the impossible by nearly 
doubling its pre-war numbers. 



Quick decisions were necessary and arrangements had to be 
made without delay, chiefly by cables hither and thither. Within 
a short time they had been completed in the chief British areas 
and set in train in America. Already in 1945 thirty-two men had 
made their way to Oxford to take up postponed or interrupted 
Scholarships, most of them coming from forces stationed in 
Europe and some from prison camps. For the first year of peace 
there were fifty in residence and for 1946-47 the total jumped to 
150. Double numbers came from the British areas, and of the 
twenty Canadians five were elected in England from Canadian 
forces overseas still awaiting repatriation. It soon became appar- 
ent that in succeeding years the Colleges would not be able to 
find room for twice the pre-war quantity of Rhodes Scholars, 
and after 1946 the Trustees had perforce to return to the ordinary 
quota. The annual number of elections from the United States 
is thirty-two, and instead of a sudden increase to sixty-four in the 
first year, it was thought desirable to spread the increment over 
two years, so that in 1947 and 1948 forty-eight American Rhodes 
Scholars came up. Of the ninety-two British Scholars who had 
been elected for the years 1939, 1940 and 1941, sixty-four took up 
their Scholarships after the war, as did also sixteen of the United 
States Scholars elected for 1939. A few others of earlier years 
resumed interrupted Scholarships. 

The result of all this was that by 1947 the number of Rhodes 
Scholars at Oxford rose to 211 (as against an average pre-war 
number of 180) and in 1948, the peak year, to 220. This was not 
as large an increase as had been foreshadowed in 1945, but it 
proved to be as much as Oxford, pressed with innumerable 
demands from at home and abroad, could take with comfort or 
advantage. After 1948 began a gentle decline of numbers year 
by year to normal proportions. 

The overwhelming majority of candidates came straight from 
war service, but there were a few who, for one reason or another, 
had not been in the armed forces or associated services. For this 


handful the ordinary conditions of election held good, but for 
the service-men a number of concessions were necessary. The 
age limit was extended for them in proportion to the years of 
service, and there proved to be no anomaly in this, for the whole 
undergraduate population was more elderly than pre-war genera- 
tions. The crucial question was, bachelors or husbands? Wylie 
has told how, after the first war, the Trustees did not feel able to 
relax their condition of celibacy. Different conditions, however, 
prevailed after the second war, and it was felt that to exclude 
young married men might have turned away a number of 
promising candidates; and so it proved. 

The honourable estate of matrimony was therefore permitted 
to ex-service candidates, but two problems remained. A Rhodes 
Scholar could not support a wife and family on his Scholarship 
stipend; and the Trustees could not possibly undertake to find 
married quarters in the Oxford lodgings which were already full 
to bursting. Every married Rhodes Scholar was therefore re- 
quired to give undertakings, first, that he had adequate means in 
addition to his Scholarship emoluments, and, second, that before 
coming to Oxford he had negotiated for a dwelling-place. The 
first condition was largely fulfilled by war gratuities and 'G.I. 
grants 5 ; the second condition was not always honoured in the 
observance, as my wife found to her cost, though often to her 
amusement. The quest for lodgings was endless and complicated, 
and my wife became the chief amateur house and land agent in 
the district. Somehow the growing number of family men found 
roofs to their heads, though sometimes not much more than 
roofs. In 1945 nearly half the small group of Rhodes Scholars 
were married, in 1946 a third; with the full influx of 194? came 
seventy-one wives, and in 1948 the maximum was reached with 
eighty-four. I could never quite keep count of the offspring, 
though I calculated once that they were arriving at the rate of 
i -5 per month. Certainly there were over fifty children 'in 
residence'. The married regime lasted until 1950, when the 
normal conditions of election were reimposed, but when we 


From left to right: Professor Wilder G. Penfield, O.M. (New Jersey and 
Merton, 1914); lieutenant-General Sir Edmund Herring, K.C.M.G., K.B.E., 
D.S.O. (Victoria and New College, 1912); Senator]. W. Fulbrigk (Ark- 
ansas and Pembroke, 1925); Sir Maurice Bowra, Vice-Cnancellor ; Mr. 
Justice A. van de Sandt Centlivres (South African College School and New 
College, 1907), Chief Justice of Sooth Africa; Professor E C. J. M. Barbeau 
(Quebec and Oriel, 1907) 

Bowing to the Vice-Chancellor 


departed in 1951 there were still a dozen married couples repre- 
senting a remarkable phase in the Rhodes Scholarships. 

Remarkable it was, and memorable. In ordinary conditions I 
should respectfully concur in what has always been the view of 
the Trustees that a Rhodes Scholar could not derive the full 
benefit from Oxford if he had to add domestic to academic 
burdens. But the conditions of Oxford after the second war 
were not ordinary. There were a great many married under- 
graduates besides Rhodes Scholars. Somehow, they had to con- 
trive to live not merely a double but a manifold life, with its 
elements of work, play, College and University corporate inter- 
ests, on top of domestic ties and cares. For some husbands the 
task proved excessive and their Oxford experience ended in 
frustration or breakdown, but these casualties were far fewer 
than might have been expected and there were none of a serious 
kind among Rhodes Scholars. Some, indeed, had a stiff battle 
to fight and a few, between the claims of families and laboratories, 
were too much thrown in on themselves and their work to 
acquire much of the essential Oxford. Even these few, however, 
were mostly of introverted disposition, and I am not sure that 
their experience would have been very different if they had been 
unmarried. Several were handicapped by one of matrimony *s 
chief hostages to fortune, the illness of wife or children. But on 
the whole it could not be said that the majority of married 
Rhodes Scholars suffered any disadvantage at Oxford, and among 
them there were some highly creditable all-round performances 
in work, sport and undergraduate leadership. One of the most 
versatile was that of a New Zealand Rhodes Scholar who ended 
his time at Oxford with a First Class, a doctorate, a considerable 
reputation as an aerobat and five daughters under seven years 
of age ! Another Rhodes Scholar from the same country achieved 
a First in Greats, a Rugby Blue, a Fellowship and three oflspring. 

In many instances the partneasship, far from being an impedi- 
ment, was a support and a stimulus. The wives had their own 



problems, coming as they did to wholly unaccustomed condi- 
tions in a country slowly emerging from wartime restrictions. 
Domestic affairs, generally in cramped and improvised surround- 
ings, needed resource, resolution and, above all, good humour, 
which few of them failed to maintain. Their testing time was the 
1946-47 winter, of evil memory, when every malignancy of 
climate was accompanied by an acute shortage of fuel. Life for 
women and young children in Oxford's gelid lodgings was a 
perpetual struggle to keep the blood circulating, and it was no 
light affliction for those who came from genial climates or from 
the air-conditioned houses of North America. One did not hear 
many lamentations, but one did hear much laughter over inter- 
change of ingenious devices for keeping the non-existent home 
fires burning. In default of them, it was a daily spectacle to see 
young husbands bringing armfuls of infantile laundry to be dried 
at Rhodes House. There is, after all, a certain wry humour in 
the invincible conviction of British architects, builders and 
plumbers that pipe-cracking frosts, which happen with well- 
known regularity, never happen in England at all. There were 
hardships for everybody, in this and many other minor ways, but 
it is written that it is well to bear the yoke in one's youth-, and the 
general spirit was to laugh off the inconveniences as just another 
of Oxford's oddities. 

The wives formed a Rhodes sorority of their own and their 
headquarters were at Rhodes House. There they congregated 
every week (with their offspring lying, crawling or toddling at 
large) over tea and talk, my wife presiding. I was, of course, not 
admitted to these sessions, nor would I have dared to irrupt into 
them, but I know that they formed a rallying-point where many 
lasting friendships were made, many matters of common interest 
(doubtless including husbands) were discussed and clarified, many 
problems of child guidance were debated and, I think, many 
agreeable memories garnered. One of the brightest of these was 
the great academic occasion in November 1947, when General 
Marshall, auctoritate totius Universitatis and in the presence of many 
of the 'highest in the land', received an honorary degree and 


spoke eloquently to a crowded Sheldonian Theatre. After the 
ceremony the General, together with the Prime Minister (Mr. 
Attlee), Mr. (now Sir) Anthony Eden and many others, was 
entertained at Rhodes House and met, with great friendliness and 
charm, the American Rhodes Scholars and their wives. 

The Rhodes Scholarships of that exceptional period lost 
nothing and gained much by the admixture of a feminine element 
which only a short time before would have seemed almost in- 
conceivable; and it is my hope and belief that most of those 
gallant young women remain unofficial members of the University 
of Oxford and will not be without influence in their own 
countries in understanding and sustaining the 'great idea*. Many 
of them have confessed a secret ambition that their sons will grow 
to the stature of Rhodes Scholars, and I shall be surprised if the 
future does not see some of those wishes fulfilled. 

Except that they were somewhat older and, in the main, had 
passed through the fiery furnace of war the effects of which on 
character and outlook are infinitely variable the post-war 
generation of Rhodes Scholars did not seem to differ materially 
from their predecessors. Their greater maturity did not prevent 
most of them from being undergraduates as Oxford understands 
that term. Their careers having been interrupted, and their 
ambitions postponed, by six years of war, they were earnest of 
purpose and under some sense of urgency in their work; but this 
was true of the whole University, and it did not prevent them 
from plucking flowers in lightness of heart as well as delving the 
soil in sweat of the brow. Academic performance showed no 
falling-off; in 1947-48, when 21 1 were in residence, thirteen First 
Classes were won in Final Honour Schools the highest number 
at that time in the history of the Rhodes Scholarships. In the 
other years the average of six or seven was the same as in pre- 
war times. There was a high proportion of Second Classes. 
These Schools classes are to-day somewhat misleading because of 
the large percentage, to which I have referred, of Rhodes Scholars 


working for post-graduate degrees, in which no classes are 

Athletic successes were maintained at rather more than the 
pre-war standard. Between 1930 and 1938 the average annual 
number of Blues and half-Blues won by Rhodes Scholars was 
thirty-four, the peak year being 1931-32 with forty-six. From 
1946 to 1951 the average was thirty-seven, and the highest point 
was reached in 1949-50, when forty-two Blues and half-Blues 
and seven double Blues were awarded to Rhodes Scholars. 
Conjugal life does not seem to have impaired prowess in the 
field, for many of these distinctions were won by married men. 
Rugby football and cricket were repeatedly captained by 
Rhodes Scholars, not to mention the games in which transatlantic 
athletes excel, such as ice hockey, lacrosse and basketball. Five 
Rhodes Scholars (four South Africans and one Australian) were 
awarded international caps for Rugby football. 

In short, there was no lack of vitality in any direction among 
these postnati. Wylie has recorded the opinion of one shrewd 
and experienced observer that after the first war the Rhodes 
Scholars played no little part in the renaissance of Oxford. I 
believe that die same can be said of their role in the second avatar, 
different though the circumstances were. In work, in games and 
in their status in College life, married or single, they acquitted 
themselves well and vigorously. Only one other crisis threatened 
them before my term of office ended. When war broke out in 
Korea in 1949 and the United States introduced conscription, it 
was doubtful for a while whether Rhodes Scholars would be 
allowed to go abroad for academic studies. Fortunately, but not 
without some strenuous negotiation on the part of the American 
Secretary, the necessary exemptions were obtained and none 
were prevented from coming to Oxford, though many had to 
return from it to national service. 

So aids this imperfect chronicle of twenty-one years spent in 
the service of the great idea. Now they are 'recollected in 


tranquillity*, like the emotion of poetry though, happily, they 
were not all emotion, nor, indeed, were they all poetry I Apart 
from routine duties of administration, a great part of our lives 
was spent in personal relations with individuals, and there is no 
more stimulating kind of existence. Innumerable guests stayed 
with us, old Rhodes Scholars, convalescing Rhodes Scholars, 
sons and daughters of Rhodes Scholars and parents, cousins and 
aunts of Rhodes Scholars ! There were other guests of many 
different ranks and degrees, from Very Important Persons to 
schoolboys and schoolgirls on pilgrimage from far countries. It 
was for such miscellaneous purposes of hospitality that the 
Trustees built the spacious residential part of Rjiodes House. 
That was in the spirit of the Founder, whose hospitality was 
ceaseless and was no respecter of persons. Lady MiJner, in her 
charming reminiscences, My Picture Gallery, rektes that once 
when she was staying at Groote Schuur she looked out of the 
window and saw, with some dismay, a large crowd of sightseers 
straggling untidily over the grounds. Mr. Rhodes, reading her 
thoughts, said: *Some people Hke to have cows in their park. I 
like to have people in mine.' There were no cows at Rhodes 
House, but there were plenty of people, and we hope that the 
bipeds received at least as much amity as the English usually 
accord to quadrupeds. 

We were, however, to see in Rhodes House a microcosm of 
the Social Revolution. One seems to be transported into a 
different era of history when one remembers that on beginning 
our duties at Rhodes House in 1931, we took over a complete 
staff of eight domestic servants. By the end of the war we had 
one faithful retainer left, and the chores were done by the mistress 
of the household, with such occasional assistance as she could get 
from an infrequent 'daily* and (later) from foreign students who 
lived with the family. In the thirties die constant luncheon- and 
dinner-parties of Rliodes Scholars were of a semi-formal pattern, 
which our predecessors impressed on us was to be regarded as 
part of the civilizing influence of Oxford. By 1946 our guests 
necessarily reduced in number were all offering to help with 


the washing-up (sometimes there was almost one upwasher per 
dish) and it was a rare sojourner, high or humble, who did not 
offer to *do* the bedroom arid make the bed. A transformation 
indeed but we often wondered whether hospitality and fellow- 
ship did not gain rather than lose by the change. Though it 
meant harder work and more contrivance, it at least relaxed a 
standard which in our earlier days had sometimes been a little 

Were our years of service to be lived again, my wife and I 
would not wish to spend them in any other calling, for, despite 
all the shortcomings which we see only too clearly in retrospect, 
none could have brought us richer satisfactions. 





MY account of the administration, of the Rhodes Scholar- 
ships in the United States must be at least in part auto- 
biographical, since I was the first Secretary for the United 
States and held that post for thirty-five years, from 1918 to the 
beginning of 1953. When I retired at the end of December 1952 
I had been connected 'with die Riodes Trust longer than any 
other officer or any Trustee. This association "was a wonderful 
experience, and one which I should Hke to recount in much fuller 
detail than would be suitable in this volume. 
* * * 

The system of selection under which I obtained my Rjiodes 
Scholarship in 1905, the second year of die operation of the 

scheme in the United States, had been set up in 1903 and 1904 by 
Dr. (later Sir George) P'arkin, the Organizing Secretary to the 
Rjiodes Trustees. Parkin had made a careful study of the problem 
of administering the Scholarships in America and had discussed 
it during the year 1903 with representatives of leading educational 
groups in America, such as the Association of American Univer- 
sities, the Association of American Colleges, the Association of 
State Universities, and other national educational organizations, 
The decision reached by the Trustees, on his recommendation, 
was that he should select for each state a committee of College 
Presidents who should make the choices. To satisfy the require- 
ments of the University of Oxford there was also set up a 
qualifying examination, required of all candidates, in Latin, Greek 
and Mathematics, which was the equivalent of Responsions. 

1 1 have given a more extended account of this subfect in my book, The American 
Rhodes Scholarships* Princeton, 1946, which was published in England in the same year 
by the Oxford University Press under the title of The VM&n ofCeett Rhodes* 



Since each state was, under Mr. Rhodes's Will, allowed two 
Scholarships, each to be good for three years, it was arranged that 
elections should take place in all states in the Union in two years 
out of three, each state electing one Rhodes Scholar in each of 
the two election years, and no Rjiodes Scholars being elected in 
the third year. Under this system there were elections in 1904 
and 1905, none in 1906; in 1907 and 1908, none in 1909; in 1910 
and 1911, none in 1912, 

It is easy to criticize this plan in the light of the fifty years of 
experience in administering the Rhodes Scholarships which have 
accumulated since it was set up. As a pioneering effort, however, 
it deserves great credit, and Parkin's judgment must be the more 
commended since he showed himself ready to accept modifica- 
tions as the need for them became apparent. Nevertheless, the 
original scheme contained defects, now only too obvious, and 
a large part of the history of the administration of the Rhodes 
Scholarships in America has been the gradual amendment of the 
method of selection so as to obtain a more effective and a more 
uniform, representation of the United States at Oxford than was 
possible under the earlier arrangements. I should like to empha- 
size, however, that the problem has not been one merely of 
mechanics and procedures. Although great changes have been 
made in the method of selection of American Rhodes Scholars, 
there was also the perhaps even more important work of deve- 
loping throughout the United States an interest in the Riodes 
Scholarships and an appreciation of the opportunities that they 


* * * 

To begin with a minor but still important point, the qualifying 
examination presented in the early days a considerable obstacle. 
The examination, as I know by experience, was not difficult, but 
it was not possible for an individual who did not have an elemen- 
tary knowledge of Greek, and actually, during the years 1904-13, 
of the 1,654 candidates who took the examination, only 649 
passed in all subjects. An arrangement was made in 1909 by 
which candidates conditioned in Greek could take that examina- 


tion later, and 222 men so conditioned were eventually able to 
pass. Even so, in many states only one or two men would pass 
the examination, and very often the one man who passed would 
be elected to a Rhodes Scholarship. 

The arrangement for simultaneous elections in all states two 
years out of three had obvious difficulties. A man might come 
of age for a Rhodes Scholarship in a year in which there was no 
election and might by the following year have committed himself 
to other plans which prevented Ms becoming a candidate. Again, 
a well-qualified man might for any one of various reasons be too 
old for the age limit before he had a chance to compete. The 
system also presented great difficulties for the University of 
Oxford, which had the problem of admitting forty-eight Rhodes 
Scholars from the United States every two years out of three, 
and none the third year. Any admissions official of any College or 
University will appreciate this problem. 

A partial improvement was effected through a new plan set up 
by the Rhodes Trustees in 1915. Under this scheme the states of 
the Union were divided into three groups, two of which elected 
Rhodes Scholars every year. This greatly eased the situation of 
the Oxford Colleges, which could now reckon on a regular 
complement of thirty-two Scholars each year. It did not, how- 
ever, solve the problems of the individual candidates in the 
various states. 

Certainly the results of the Rhodes Scholarship competitions 
in the United States in the early years were something less than 
satisfactory. Not only were die methods of selection inadequate 
to secure the appointment of the best candidates who presented 
themselves, but there was a dearth of candidates and, after the 
first few years, there was even evidence that interest in the 
Rhodes Scholarships was beginning to decline. The best Rhodes 
Scholars in this period were as good as any we have ever had, 
but, because of the lack of competition, the average level was 
not as high as might have been desired. Besides this, many 
appointments actually wait begging because there were no 
candidates at all. The number of American Rhodes Scholars 


chosen for the years 1904-17 is shown in the following table. 
The number authorized was "forty-eight for each year down 
through 1914, and thirty-two for 1916 and 1917. The year 1916 
is the only one when there were sufficient candidates to fill all 
the appointments. 

1904 43 

1905 38 

1907 45 

1908 45 

1910 44 

1911 46 

1913 43 

1914 47 

1916 32 

1917 28 

Another impediment, of a different kind, to the development 
of the plan was that, since the Selection Committees were com- 
posed exclusively of College Presidents in the various states, the 
ex-Rhodes Scholars who knew something about Oxford had no 
chance to make their knowledge useful. My own experience can 
serve as an illustration of this point. I went to Oxford in 1905 
and returned to the United States in December 1907, after I had 
completed the examinations for the BXitt. degree, in order to 
take up a position at Indiana University -which had been offered 
me during the summer. I actually resigned my Scholarship in 
June 1907, although I did not plan to leave Oxford until Decem- 
ber, as I wished to marry, and the regulations did not permit 
married Rhodes Scholars to remain in residence. During one of 
my vacations I had become engaged to Marie Osgood, who was 
then living with relatives (the George Grey Barnard family) in 
France. I was eager that she should see something of Oxford, 
meet the Rhodes Scholars and the officers of the Rhodes Trust 
and learn something at first hand of the meaning of this wonderful 
experience. I had intended that we should live on borrowed 


money after our marriage in June 1907 until our return to 
America in December, and thought that the reward would 
amply justify what was, for a young man at the opening of his 
career, an adventurous system of financing. Our situation was 
greatly eased, however, by the kindness of my wife's cousin, 
Mrs. Fiske Warren, who was at that time living in Oxford and, 
although this was before women were officially admitted to the 
University, pursuing a four-year course in what was the equiva- 
lent of Greats. Mrs. Warren cordially invited us to live with her 
in her large house in Banbury Road. This hospitable invitation 
added the final touch to our plans and gave us six never-to-be- 
forgotten months in Oxford. 

This beginning of our married life in Oxford meant, of course, 
that when we returned to Oxford in 1912-13 it was like going 
home to us both. It meant also that my wife's acquaintance with 
Rhodes Scholars was as extensive as mine, and it laid the founda- 
tion for her part in the administration of the American Oxonian 
(mostly, I am afraid, keeping accounts and wrapping and mailing 
copies) and, far more important, for collaboration with me when 
I became American Secretary in 1918. From the beginning and 
throughout my tenure of the post the American Secretaryship 
was a two-man job. 

I returned to the United States at the end of 1907 full of 
enthusiasm for the opportunity which a Rhodes Scholarship 
offered and eager to do something to contribute to the successful 
working of the scheme. I was disappointed to find that I had no 
opportunity. Rhodes Scholars had, for the most part, no connec- 
tion with the selection of new men and got their news about the 
working of the Rhodes Scholarships in this country mainly from 
the newspapers, and after 1914 from the American Oxonian. There 
were a few exceptions. Leigh Alexander of my year was chosen 
as a member of the Ohio Committee of Selection, and other 
Rhodes Scholars may have had similar opportunities, but only 
a very few. I became acquainted with a few of the new Rhodes 
Scholars. For example, Elmer Davis, who was appointed in 
1910, came to call on me in Bloomington. I had, however, no 


regular connection with the Scholarships and no opportunity to 
make my enthusiasm for them count. 

When I went back to Oxford for the year 1912-13 (on leave of 
absence from Indiana University, to finish a book) I was much 
interested in meeting the Rhodes Scholars in residence at that 
time. A number of states, however, were not represented and I 
began to hear disturbing reports about the states in which there 
were no candidates. The qualifying examination (which was 
abolished in 1918) doubtless had something to do with this, but 
I soon became convinced that the real cause was lack of know- 
ledge on the part of American students of the opportunity 


* * # 

Just before the 1904 Rhodes Scholars returned to the United 
States in 1907 an alumni association of American RJiodes Scholars 
was organized in Oxford with R. R Scholz (Wisconsin and 
Worcester, 1904) as President and E. W. Murray (Kansas and 
St. John's, 1904) as Secretary and Editor of the Alumni Magazine, 
a quarterly periodical which was planned to keep American 
RJiodes Scholars in touch with each other and in touch with 
Oxford. The Alumni Magazine was published from December 
1907 to April 1912. In this latter year the publication was 
abandoned because of lack of funds. 

Although the old Alumni Magazine was abandoned in 1912, 
the Association has continued to exist down to the present day. 
It has established itself as the organization of the American RJiodes 
Scholars, and it gives every indication of having a continued life 
of increasing usefulness. The Association has from the start 
aspired to accumulate a fund which could be used for Rhodes 
Scholarship purposes. I am happy to say that this fund, including 
the endowment for the Eastman Professorship, now amounts to 
something over $400,000, and there is no doubt in my mind that 
it will amount in the course of time to an even more considerable 
figure. The possible uses of such a fund are many. It is my own 
ambition that we shall eventually be able to pay out of this fund 
all the expense of the administration of the Rhodes Scholarships 


in. the United States. Members of Committees, as noted below, 
already pay their own travelling and hotel expenses. In addition, 
however, money is needed for the salary of the American 
Secretary, the expense of printing a memorandum of regulations 
and, most important of all, for contributions to the academic 
work of the University of Oxford. 

When the Rhodes Scholarships were established there was a 
feeling in Oxford, which Sir Francis Wylie has recorded, that 
while the Founder had added materially to the number of under- 
graduates and consequently to the expense of instruction, he made 
no commensurate gift to the University of Oxford itself. Some 
funds have been given to Oxford by the Rhodes Trustees for 
specific purposes. It is my aspiration that we shall be able to 
build up the fund of the Association of American Rhodes 
Scholars to such a size that it will be possible to render significant 
support to the intellectual work of the University of Oxford. 
This is, it might be pointed out, the kind of task which the alumni 
of every American University take for granted. 

This fund, part of which is known as the American Trust Fund 
for Oxford University, has already been able to make a small 
beginning by receiving restricted gifts for Oxford Colleges and 
transmitting them to the intended recipients. The amount of 
these restricted gifts has been significant, but I hope that eventually 
the Fund will be able to transmit much larger amounts. In the 
life of Oxford fifty years is a short time, and what we have done 
so far should be regarded only as a beginning. 

In 1914 I established, with the help of Rhodes Scholar friends, 
the American Oxonian. The aim of the new magazine was not 
merely to keep Rhodes Scholars in touch with one another, but 
also to advertise the Scholarships and to stir up competition for 
them. Different numbers were financed by different groups of 
Rhodes Scholars around the country. For example, the number 
for January 1915 was made possible by a subscription which I 
collected in New York, and I still remember my astonishment 


and delight to find that there were some Rhodes Scholars who 
could and did give as much as $25.00, a very handsome sum in 
those days. 

The Oxonian was widely distributed. We sent copies to all 
the Rhodes Scholars whether they had paid their subscriptions 
or not, on the theory that this was the best way to get them 
interested* We sent the magazine as well to as many College and 
University libraries as we could afford, and we published a con- 
tinuous series of articles, like Thayer's review of comments on 
the Scholarships in American periodicals, in order to give those 
interested some idea of the impact of the Scholarships on Ameri- 
can public opinion. This effort was, of course, aided by Parkin's 
book, and by a book on the Rjiodes Scholarships by R. F. Scholz 
and Stanley Hornbeck. 

We all of us felt in this country that the American Oxonian did 
something to increase interest in the Rhodes Scholarships. The 
Rjiodes Trustees appreciated its value to the extent that they 
offered us a modest subsidy which, for a few years, was accepted. 
As the magazine grew more successful I felt myself that it was a 
mistake for us to publish it with a subsidy from the Rjiodes 
Trustees and accordingly I gratefully refused to accept any 
further remittances. Since 1928, which was the last year in 
which the subsidy was paid, the American Oxonian has been 
entirely self-supporting and has been run on the admirable 
principle of not printing more pages in any given year than our 
funds would justify. 

The American Oxonian has been the means by which American 
Rhodes Scholars, widely scattered as they are, could keep in 
touch with each other. Reunions of small groups were held from 
time to time as occasion served, but because of the distances 
involved, national reunions have been rare and never fully 
attended. The most important ones were in Swarthmore in 

193 3 which was held at the time of the College Commencement 
and thus we were fortunate in having prominent Rjiodes Scholars 
for the Commencement speakers, and in Princeton in 1947. 
Instead of frequent reunions the whole group can be reached 


through this modest magazine. The annual list of addresses and 
occupations is kept up to date, as is the necrology which is now 
becoming of increasing importance. Older men must face the 
fact that the time is soon coming when older Rhodes Scholars 
will die as fast as new ones are appointed. 

In the early years my wife, who knew the Rjiodes Scholars as 
well as I did, assisted in the editing and mailing of the magazine. 
Soon after I became American Secretary, however, it became 
evident that, if I was to continue my career in education, the 
magazine was just one task too many, and the tasks of Editor and 
Business Manager have been passed on to a series of men who 
have taken advantage of this opportunity to perform an out- 
standing service for the Rhodes Scholarships. As Editors the 
following men have served: 

C. F. Tucker Brooke (West Virginia and St. John's, 1904). 
Alan Valentine (Pennsylvania and Balliol, 1922). 
Crane Brinton (Massachusetts and New College, 1919). 
Harvie Branscomb (Alabama and Wadham, 1914). 

With William Blackburn (South Carolina and Hertford, 

Gordon Chalmers (Rhode Island and Wadham, 1926). 

With Denham Sutcliffe (Maine and Hertford, 1937) 

and Holbrook MacNeille (New Jersey and Balliol, 1928). 
Paul Havens (New Jersey and University, 1925). 
E. Wilson Lyon (Mississippi and St. John's, 1925). 

And as Business Managers: 

William Thayer (New Hampshire and Magdalen, 1905). 
E. D. Keith (Connecticut and Oriel, 1910). 
Henry Allen Moe (U.S.A.-at-Large and Brasenose, 1919). 
George E. Barnes (Montana and Christ Church, 1904). 
John W. Bodine (Connecticut and Balliol, 1933). 

It would be hard to over-estimate the value of the contribution 
made by these men to die working of the Scholarships. 


In such ways as this Rhodes Scholars did what they could to 
popularize the Scholarships, but it soon became evident that all 
that we were able to do was not enough. The problem which 
&ced us was to bring the Scholarships to the attention of possible 
candidates and of American College professors who were their 
advisers. After my return to the United States I had considerable 
correspondence with Parkin, and with Rhodes Scholars whom I 
knew, about the lack of competition. The result of our correspon- 
dence was that Parkin invited me to accompany him in 191? on 
one or two of the trips which he made around the United States. 
These trips were extremely iUuminating to me. In the discussions 
which ensued I realized how little members of our Committees 
often understood of the nature of the Scholarships and how little 
effective work was being done to bring this opportunity to the 
attention of possible candidates. 

One amusing situation which we discovered was that in certain 
states the Committees had adopted the idea of passing the 
Scholarship around, first to one University and then to another, 
Parkin naturally objected to this. In one case the Committee 
chairman replied that his University had had it the year before 
and that it would be very embarrassing to him. if the University 
which had the next turn should not receive the Scholarship. 
Dr. Parkin saw the point and gave his consent on the under- 
standing that once the round had been completed the Scholarship 
should be awarded solely on merit. 

The other side of this picture, however, was that the reception 
given to returning Rhodes Scholars was excellent. They had no 
difficulty in finding jobs and soon began to make a distinct 
success in their various occupations. 

# * * 

The Rhodes Trustees began during these years to consider 
what should be done to improve the American competition. It 
was decided to create an American Secretaryship, and on Dr. 
Parkin's recommendation I was, in 1918, invited to assume the 
duties of this post. Needless to say, I was delighted to accept. 


I was then a professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology 
and a few years later became President of Swarthmore College, 
but I kept up my Rhodes Scholarship work in addition to these 
other activities, as I did after I became Director of the Institute 
for Advanced Study in 1939. I had the task of administering the 
qualifying examination in 1918, the last time it was given, and 
had the responsibility of administering the American selections. 

This last problem looked a difficult one. On the one hand 
there were the very strict terms of the Will and on the other 
hand there was this apathy concerning the Scholarships in the 
United States and the great inequality between the American 
states. The first move I made as American Secretary was to ask 
the Trustees to allow me to compose the Committees of Selection 
entirely of Rhodes Scholars except for the chairmen who, it was 
provided, should always be distinguished citizens outside the 
Rhodes Scholar group. I have many times been thankful that I 
had the foresight to make this last provision, which prevented 
the Scholarship body from becoming a closed corporation. On 
the other hand, the Ritodes Scholars who made up the bulk of 
the Committees knew Oxford and they had an intense enthusiasm 
for the Rhodes Scholarships. They had also an instinctive under- 
standing of the type of man who would be successful as a Rhodes 

Mr. Wylie, later Sir Francis Wylie, came over in 1919 to assist 
me in organizing the first Committees of Rhodes Scholars. His 
knowledge of old Rhodes Scholars through the years of associa- 
tion with them at Oxford was of the greatest value for this task. 
We did a certain amount of travelling and made up what seemed 
to us a satisfactory list of Committees for the first election under 
my administration. 

When the original scheme was set up in 1904 the College 
Presidents who composed the earliest Committees had given an 
undertaking to Parkin that since the money for the Scholarships 
came from an English source the expense of the selection should 
be borne in the United States. I asked the Rhodes Scholar 
members of Committees whether they were prepared to adhere 


to this understanding and was delighted to find that they would. 
The result was that, from 1918 down to the present, members of 
Committees of Selections, both Rhodes Scholars and chairmen, 
have paid their own expenses when serving in the state in which 
they resided. This has even applied to the Secretaries of the 
Committees, who have, of course, to receive applications, answer 
inquiries and perform other tasks, and who have, in consequence, 
a considerable stenographic and postal expense. The result of all 
this is that Rhodes Scholars have thus contributed some thousands 
of dollars per year to the administration of the Rhodes Trust. 
This was important even in 1918, and much more so later as 
prices rose and the burden on the limited funds of the Rhodes 
Trust became heavier by the needed increase of the Scholars' 
stipend from the original 300 to the ^600 which was allotted 
as from 1954. 

The second move which I made as American Secretary was to 
ask the permission of the Trustees to reprint the Memorandum of 
Regulations which had been sent to the United States each year 
in fairly small quantities. I reprinted 15,000 copies at once (as I 
did ever afterwards) and a year later the United States Com- 
missioner of Education very kindly reprinted 12,500 more. The 
result of the distribution of these copies through the Colleges and 
Universities was, of course, to make the Scholarships much 
better known than they had been originally. 

The reconstituted Rhodes Scholar Committees worked an 
immediate improvement in the competition and in the quality 
of the Scholars selected. Down to 1918 (as I have noted) there 
had been only one year in which all the appointments were 
filled, the vacancies being due to the fact that in various states 
few or no candidates offered themselves. Since 1918 we have 
never kcked candidates and have usually sent the full number 
authorized. Not merely the number but also the quality of the 
Rhodes Scholars who went to Oxford showed an immediate 


Nevertheless, there was a great difference between the states in 
the calibre of the men selected. This difference was felt in Oxford 
and, of course, was felt by those of us in the United States who 
were responsible for the selections. To meet this problem we 
tried another device: Committees were instructed to refuse to 
appoint when, in their opinion, there was no candidate appearing 
before them who would be a credit to his country at Oxford. 
This policy, however, was carried out only in one or two states, 
and even in the few cases where it was followed it still did not 
solve our problem. There is a great difference between a man 
who will make a first-class Rhodes Scholar and a man who has 
enough ability to be a possibly acceptable Rhodes Scholar if no 
stronger candidate appears. 

The problem was one which weighed heavily on the minds 
of all the Rhodes Scholars who had any connection with the 
selections, which in practice meant all the Rhodes Scholars in 
the United States. As a result of years of discussion we evolved 
what is known as the District Plan. Under this plan, as it was 
finally adopted, the country is divided into eight Districts of 
six states each. Four Scholars are elected each year from each 
District. There is a competition every year in every state and 
each state Committee is permitted to nominate two candidates 
to appear before the District Committee. From the twelve men 
so nominated the District Committee is authorized to select four 
without regard to state lines. This means, of course, that states 
no longer receive equal numbers of Rhodes Scholars. In a given 
year a given state may have two and another state none. While 
states do not receive equal numbers of Rhodes Scholars, each 
state receives as many as in the opinion of the Committee its 
candidates deserve, and it is difficult to find objectors who will 
argue that a Rhodes Scholarship should be given to a man who 
does not deserve it. 

Nevertheless, the District plan had from the beginning and, 


indeed, so far as I know, still has some opposition from a certain 
number of ex-Rhodes Scholars. These were men who took the 
position that they would rather see all the states represented even 
though the average quality of the Rhodes Scholars was not so 
high. This was, of course, a perfectly tenable position, but I am 
happy to say that eventually the prevailing opinion was that the 
important thing was to appoint men who came as nearly as 
possible up to the standard of quality prescribed by Mr. Rhodes 
in his Will rather than to appoint men from all the states. This 
position was strengthened by the difference in population be- 
tween the states. It became quite clear that if equal numbers 
were appointed from all the states, candidates from states with 
smaller populations would have a very great advantage over those 
who competed in states where the population was large. The 
difference in population was so great (at the extreme nearly 100 
to i) that this argument became a very real one. It is still, I think, 
true that a candidate from one of the smaller states has statistically 
a better chance of an appointment than does a man who comes 
from one of the larger states. 

The District plan was not put into operation without years of 
discussion. Indeed, I would like to take this opportunity of saying 
that the administration of the Rhodes Scholarships in the United 
States has been, throughout my official connection with it, 
distinctly democratic. It has been an effort and responsibility of 
the whole body of Rhodes Scholars, and all have had a part. 
When Rhodes Scholars meet together they are certain to discuss 
problems connected with the choice of new men and the welfare 
of those who have already been sent, and from these discussions 
there .gradually emerge new ideas of inestimable value for the 
future planning of the work. This democratic aspect of the 
administration of die Scholarships has, I am convinced, been of 
immense value in the development of the Scholarships in America 
during this whole period. 

I discussed the District plan with other Rhodes Scholars in 
meetings from the Atlantic to the Pacific. Besides this, I inter- 


viewed a large number of leaders of education in the United 
States, College Presidents and officials of educational associations 
and foundations. The result of these many consultations was, on 
the whole, an overwhelming endorsement of the plan. It re- 
mained only to convince the Trustees. 

At first the Trustees were opposed, on the grounds that the 
plan was contrary to the Will, which had guaranteed two Scholars 
from each state. My answer was, as I have indicated above, that 
it gave each state its quota provided the competition deserved it. 
I remember that when I went to Oxford in 1924 for a summer 
visit I said to Lord Milner, who was then the senior Trustee, that 
I had brought over two plans, one of which I was sure was legal 
and the other, I was afraid, was not. His reply was: 'Doubtless the 
illegal plan is the better'. I said that I was afraid it was, and he 
replied, to my surprise and delight, that he thought they would 
have to have the illegal plan. The result of Lord Milner's attitude, 
which I soon found was shared by other Trustees, was that Philip 
Kerr (later Lord Lothian), who was then Secretary of the Trust, 
was sent to the United States to make independent inquiries 
among Rhodes Scholars, College Presidents and educational 
authorities throughout the country as to their opinion of the 
plan. I am happy to say that he received a very strong endorse- 
ment, and so reported to the Rhodes Trustees. Nevertheless, the 
legal advisers to the Trust pronounced the plan illegal under 
the Will. The result was that under Lord Lothian's influence, the 
Rhodes Trustees arranged the passage through Parliament of the 
Rhodes Trust Act of 1929, which authorized the District plan, 
and in other ways liberalized the administration of the Scholar- 
ships. It is a question whether an act of this sort would have been 
possible in the United States, but the powers of Parliament extend 
even to the modification of a man's will. 

Personally, I felt no compunction about obtaining the scheme 
which would alter the terms of the Rhodes Will. I had carefully 


studied not only that Will but also all the papers ever issued by 
the Founder in connection with it, and I felt very strongly that 
if I could only have put the case to him face to face he would 
have been in favour of the District plan. Though the administra- 
tion of the Rhodes Scholarships in this country is now conducted 
on a plan quite different from that which he outlined, I am 
convinced that, if he could have been consulted, he would have 
agreed with what we are doing. 

In accordance with the Rhodes Trust Act of 1929 the Trustees 
authorized the adoption of the District plan for the American 
elections of 1930. The difference it produced in the records of 
the Rhodes Scholars at Oxford was startling and dramatic. The 
best Rhodes Scholars elected under the District plan were no 
better than the best had always been, but under this plan the 
quality of the whole group was much more uniform. This was 
felt in Oxford and in the course of a few years made the admission 
of Rhodes Scholars to Oxford Colleges much easier than it had 
been in the past. It is true that the District plan has lessened the 
number of Rhodes Scholars from certain of the smaller states, 
but it has made the Rhodes Scholars from those states when 
selected a much stronger group and much more suited for 
admission to Oxford Colleges. 

Distribution of Rhodes Scholars by states under the District 
plan is shown in the following tabulation of elections from 1930 
to 1953. Under the old plan, by which elections were held in a 
given state two years out of three, the average for a given state 
in these seventeen years would have been eleven or twelve 
Rhodes Scholars. Approximately half the states have this number 
or more; approximately half the states have fewer. According to 
population, however, the smaller states have the better of the 
bargain, and a given individual would even since 1930 have 
statistically a better chance of an appointment if he came from 
Nevada, with a population at the foot of the list, than from 
California, with a population which stands near the top. 




27 California 

22 Oregon 

20 Connecticut 

19 New York 

1 8 Missouri 

17 Georgia 

16 Ohio 

15 New Jersey 

14 Michigan 

13 Iowa 

12 Kansas 
North Carolina 

ii Alabama 
Maryland, D.C. 
New Hampshire 

10 Nebraska 

9 Arkansas 
North Dakota 

8 Idaho 

Rhode Island 

6 New Mexico 
South Dakota 

5 Vermont 
West Virginia 

4 Delaware 
South Carolina 

3 Nevada 



*"~ I J HE two world wars obviously demanded some modifica- 
* tions of our administration of the Rhodes Scholarships in 
the United States. The first war meant that in 1917 and 1918 
no American Rhodes Scholars could go to Oxford. Scholars 
were elected, however, as for those years and allowed to take up 
their Scholarships when this again became possible. Thus the 
1917 Scholars went into residence in 1919; the 1918 and 1919 
Scholars in 1920. The second war caused a more serious break 
(seven years with no elections) from 1939 through 1945. Scholars 
had been elected for 1939 but only one, Charles Collingwood 
(Maryland and New College, 1939), was able to take up his 
Scholarship in 1939 and this because he happened to be already 
in England, serving as a war correspondent with the British 
Forces. He remained at Oxford only one year and then resumed 
his work as war correspondent, this time with the American 
Forces. Of the thirty-two men elected for 1939, seventeen were 
never able to take up their Scholarships. A small number of this 
group sailed for England in the fall of 1946, but were destined to 
be further dekyed in New York by a shipping strike; a delay 
also experienced by the 1947 group the following year. 

No further elections were held in the United States until 1946 
when Scholars were elected for 1947, and when forty-eight, 
instead of the usual thirty-two, were chosen. A similar number 
were elected for 1948, but in 1949 the number returned to the 
normal thirty-two. For men who had served in the armed 
forces the Trustees allowed a certain relaxation in the rules con- 
cerning age and marriage. Any man was allowed to compete 
who would have been eligible to compete during the years when 
the Scholarships were suspended. 

* * * 



Swarthmore College, of which I was then President, saw a 
good deal of the Rhodes Scholars during the war years. In 
September 1938, when the Scholars-elect had assembled in New 
York ready to sail, the conference at Munich halted, for the 
moment, any departure from the U.S. A. I knew by experience 
the disastrous effect any long stay in New York would have on 
the finances of the newly-appointed Scholars and accordingly 
invited the entire group to pay a visit to Swarthmore. Our 
students generously doubled up in the men's dormitory, provided 
our guests with athletic equipment, and I believe that the whole 
group, hosts and guests alike, thoroughly enjoyed the experience. 

"We were not to see the last of this group at Swarthmore. Two 
years later, in the spring of 1940, the United States Government 
issued strict instructions that all U.S. citizens in Europe should 
return to the U.S. A. The final date when a sailing was available 
came just before the date fixed for Honours examinations at 
Oxford. A group of six Americans (three Rhodes Scholars and 
three non-Rhodes Scholars) were scheduled to take these 
examinations. The question was what should they do. Indivi- 
duals, of course, could and did ignore the instructions of the 
Department of State. But I felt it would be unfortunate to have 
a group of Rhodes Scholars and the University of Oxford 
involved in such a defiance of our Government. 

A. D. Lindsay, Master of Balliol and at that time Vice- 
Chancellor of the University of Oxford, solved the problem. 
He said to the Hebdomadal Council that he was sure these 
examinations could be given at Swarthmore. He sent me a 
cablegram to which I sent a joyful acceptance. Papers and 
instructions were prepared, the Rhodes Scholars sailed from 
England and eventually appeared at Swarthmore where they 
were again received in the dormitory to await papers which 
arrived, duly opened and passed by die censor, from Oxford. 
The examinations were held in correct Oxford form, with 
gowns and white ties required, and ex-Rhodes Scholars to 
invigilate, the answers were duly posted to Oxford (first being 
microfilmed to guard against any possible wartime casualty) and 


the examinees in due time all received their Honours degrees. 
The microfilms of the papers written are, I believe, preserved by 
Sir Douglas Veale, the Registrar, as a memento of the first time 
that Oxford Honours examinations have ever been held outside 
of Oxford certainly the first time in the U.S. A. 

In 1939 the Carnegie Corporations made a grant of $25,000 
to the Association of American Rhodes Scholars for the purpose 
of helping displaced Rhodes Scholars of the classes of 1937, 
1938 and 1939 to continue their studies in the United States. 
From this fund we made thirty-five grants totalling $13,715 to 
such Rhodes Scholars, and in 1940 we returned the unused 
balance of $11,285 to the Carnegie Corporation. 

The administration of the Rhodes Scholarships in the United 
States owes a great debt to half a dozen Rhodes Scholars who 
have given part of their time to assisting the American Secretary. 
I myself owe a great deal to the varied knowledge, both geo- 
graphical and personal, of these men. I hope and believe that the 
experience has been good for them. Two have succeeded me in 
succession as Presidents of Swarthmore College, and the last- 
named has now succeeded me as American Secretary. The list is 
as follows: 

Alan Valentine (Pennsylvania and Balliol, 1922). 

Troyer Anderson (New Hampshire and New College, 1923). 

John W. Nason (Minnesota and Oriel, 1928). 

Gilmore Stott (Ohio and Balliol, 1938). 

James McN. Hester (California and Pembroke, 1947). 

Courtney Smith (Iowa and Merton, 1938). 

I am very proud of the record of the American Rhodes 
Scholars. Their averages in examinations in Oxford are better 
than those of the average Oxford Honours man. They are not 
quite up to the best Scholarship holders, but this can be partly 
accounted for by the fact that many of the ablest Rhodes Scholars 


go in for research degrees for which no averages are possible. 
Their record in sports and in the activities of Oxford life is all 
that could be desired. I think I can say without exaggeration that 
American Rhodes Scholars are considered as assets to their 

I give below a tabulation of the occupations followed by 
American Rhodes Scholars after their return to the United 
States. Such a table will include some overlapping, for many 
men will have engaged in more than one occupation, but it does, 
I believe, show the important trends. 

Jubilee Year, June 1953 


Teaching . . . -366 

Educational Administration . . 65 

Legal Profession .... 246 

Legal Education . . . .21 

Business . . . . .192 

Government Service . . .113 

Journalism, Radio, etc. . . .70 

Medicine . . . . 45 

Military Service . . . -39 

Ministry and Religious Work . . 32 

Foundations . . . .14 
Scientific Research . ... 7 

Scholars in Residence and Miscellaneous . 162 

(This includes occupations of 162 deceased Rhodes Scholars.) 

As might perhaps have been expected, the occupation that has 
attracted the largest number of American Riodes Scholars, 
nearly one-third, has been education. Not only have many 
Riodes Scholars become Professors in American Colleges and 
Universities, but also a surprisingly large number have become 


Presidents of Colleges or Universities or heads of foundations. 
The influence of this group on American educational practice, 
and particularly on the rapidly increasing maturity and breadth 
of methods of instruction in American institutions of higher 
learning, has been immense. Much of this influence is intangible 
and cannot be exactly charted. However, there is one concrete 
development of such great importance that it must be briefly, if 
inadequately, mentioned in. this place. This is the extension of 
the principles of honours work to American undergraduate 
instruction. Certainly the experience of Rhodes Scholars at 
Oxford has played a not inconsiderable part in the development 
in the United States of a concept of education, not as a technique 
of teaching, but as a means of bringing a student to a personal 
and individual grasp of his subject. In a rather elaborate study 
which I made several years ago I found that honours work in one 
form or another had been adopted in some 200 institutions in 
the United States, and I refer the reader to the book which I 
wrote at that time 1 for a more extended discussion of this very 
interesting development. 

Next to the group in education comes the group who are 
teaching or practising Law. The interest of this subject for 
American Rhodes Scholars is obvious. American law is founded 
on the English constitution, and American Rhodes Scholars 
reading Law at Oxford are going over the fundamentals of what 
legal training would be, or ought to be, in the United States. 

The greatest shift in recent years has been the considerable 
number of Rhodes Scholars who have gone into Government 
service. The number is now over a hundred and is constantly 
increasing. Men of the Rhodes Scholar type are needed in public 
work and they eagerly respond to the need. Needless to say, this 
is a development which would have given the Founder the 
greatest satisfaction. Something of the same kind could be said 
about work in journalism and radio. The improvement in quality 
of our journalistic work and the increasing importance of radio, 

1 Frank Aydelotte, Breaking the Academic Lockstep: The Development of Honors Work 
in American Colleges and Universities, Harper & Brothers, New York and London, 1944. 


including television, are evident to all, and it is not surprising 
that the number of Rhodes Scholars in these occupations has 
increased so rapidly. 

In general I think it could be said of the American Rhodes 
Scholars that they have excelled in whatever they have under- 
taken. This excellence has not always led to newspaper notoriety, 
but as I travel around the United States I am constantly pleased to 
find Rhodes Scholars in positions of importance doing well the 
work which has been allotted them to do. 

One indication of the success of the operation of the Rhodes 
Scholarships in America is the remarkable way in which they 
have inspired other foundations. I should like to mention five 
particularly striking instances of this. 

Shortly after I became American Secretary in 1918 I began 
active work on a plan for reciprocating the Rhodes Scholarships 
to bring English students to study in the United States. I showed 
this plan to Rhodes Scholars, to educational men up and down 
the country and to everyone that I thought could add anything 
to it. The result was a plan that seemed to those of us concerned 
excellent for the purpose, but all my efforts to obtain funds to 
put it into operation proved vain. Suddenly that problem was 
solved by a visit in 1924 to Edward Harkness, the donor of the 
Commonwealth Fund, by the Prince of Wales (now Duke of 
Windsor). Apparently the Prince emphasized to Mr. Harkness 
how desirable it would be to have such a scheme of reciprocation 
and Mr. Harkness, with his usual promptness, replied that we 
should have it at once. 

The first I knew of this was through a telephone call from Max 
Farrand, then administrator of the Commonwealth Fund, who 
asked if he could talk with me. He came down to Swarthmore, 
told me the problem and asked whether I had any suggestions 
as to what form such a system of Fellowships should take. I 
replied that I had a plan ready-made. I showed this to him and 
told him about the authorities whom I had consulted. He saw 


instantly that this was what he wanted and took the plan, only 
warning me that my connection with it would have to be kept 
confidential. That, of course, was satisfactory to me, so long as 
the plan was going to be put into operation. It was adopted by 
the Commonwealth Trustees with only minor changes, and I am 
able to speak about it only because Max Farrand broke the seal 
of silence by an article in the Educational Record 1 for July 1925 in 
which he gave the facts which I have here outlined. The whole 
story was told again by Oscar N. Soibert in an article in World's 
Work for July 1926? 

The Commonwealth Fund Fellowships have been admirably 
administered and Commonwealth Fellows have been a great 
success in all the different Colleges and Universities which they 
have attended. Naturally, it was a great satisfaction to me that 
this scheme should be in one sense a result of the Rhodes Scholar- 
ships. Richard H. Simpson, himself a Rhodes Scholar (Indiana 
and Brasenose, 1913), was the first Secretary of the Common- 
wealth Committee of Award, and wrote after his retirement in 
1950 some interesting and charming Reminiscences which I wish 
could be more widely read. 

In 1924 I received a visit in Swarthmore from C. A. Wilson 
(Massachusetts and Worcester, 1908) who was then on the legal 
staff of the American Smelting and Refining Company. Wilson 
came to me as a representative of Senator Guggenheim to say 
that the Senator wanted to found a system of scholarships or 
Fellowships, that he had the Rhodes Scholarships very much in 

1 *The Commonwealth Fund Fellowships*, Max Farrand, Educational Record, July 1925. 
*On the following pages is given a summary of the provisions for granting these Fellow- 
ships,, and I shodd like here publicly to give credit to President Aydelotte of Swarthmore 
for his assistance in developing the details of this plan. President Aydelotte had already 
been working, as many of you know, upon this very subject for a number of years. He 
turned over his plan for our use, and it was simply adapted to meet the requirements of 
our directors.' 

3 'Continuing the Rhodes Scholar Idea', Oscar N. Soibert, The World's Work, July 
1926. *The credit for the plan adopted should be largely given to Dr. Frank Aydelotte, 
President of Swarthmore College and American Secretary of the Rhodes Trust. From 
his long experience with the Rhodes Scholarships, Dr. Aydelotte had worked out a 
carefully devised plan for a reciprocal project to bring British students to the United 
States. This plan had been discussed in detail with representatives of British Universities 
and, with certain minor modifications made in accordance with the wishes of the direc- 
tors, formed the basis of the final plan adopted by the Common wealth Fund.' 


mind and that he would like to have me suggest a plan. I 
thought the matter over carefully, consulted various educational 
advisers and came to the conclusion that the greatest gap in our 
system of scholarships and fellowships in the United States lay in 
the lack of opportunity for older students who had taken the 
ordinary undergraduate and graduate degrees and who wanted 
to go on with advanced research. At the time the Guggenheim 
Foundation was organized there was practically no system of 
support for these mature scholars and artists. I employed Henry 
Allen Moe, who was just then leaving Oxford, as my assistant in 
consulting educational authorities and in making the plans. I 
afterwards suggested him as Secretary to the Foundation, a 
position which he accepted and has held ever since. I myself 
became chairman of the Educational Advisory Board. Senator 
Guggenheim, during his lifetime, added substantially to the 
endowment and remembered the Foundation in his will. The 
Guggenheim Fellowships have been a great success intellectually, 
and the outstanding work done by Guggenheim Fellows has had 
the result of the establishment of similar schemes by other 
foundations; none, however, so extensive. 

I felt very strongly in the 19205, as did many other Rhodes 
Scholars, that it was a pity that Oxford saw only young American 
men who went as students and that no arrangements existed to 
give the University an opportunity of sharing the more advanced 
results of American scholarship. It was indicated to me by Mr. 
Abraham Flexner that George Eastman might possibly be inter- 
ested in arranging for something of the kind. Accordingly, Dr. 
Flexner and I paid a visit to Mr. Eastman and broached the 
matter to him. The ultimate result was that Mr. Eastman gave 
the Association of American Rhodes Scholars $200,000, which 
was the sum we had suggested. 

When I returned to Swarthmore after this happy result I gave 
a good deal of further thought to the financial terms of the 
Professorship. Mr. Eastman was anxious that the Professor 
should be provided with a suitable house in Oxford and that the 
terms of the Professorship should be liberal. When I translated 


these ideas into figures I felt that the income from $200,000 would 
not be enough and I accordingly wrote a letter to Mr. Eastman 
saying that if we wanted to make the Professorship all that we 
had been discussing we ought to have $100,000 in addition. In 
a few days* time I received from George Eastman a handwritten 
letter enclosing his cheque for $100,000, and it was upon 
the basis of this $300,000 that the Eastman Professorship was 

The fund was given to the Association of American Rhodes 
Scholars, and the Professor is chosen by a committee consisting 
of two men appointed by the Association and two by the Hebdo- 
madal Council, with the Vice-Chancellor as chairman. The list 
of Eastman Professors is an extremely distinguished one and all 
reports indicate that the Professorship has added materially to the 
intellectual resources of the University of Oxford. The list of 
Eastman Professors so far appointed is as follows: 

1930-3 1 John Livingston Lowes 

1931-32 "Wesley Clair Mitchell 

1933-34 Felix Frankfurter 

1934-35 Arthur Holly Compton 

I935~36 Herbert Spencer Jennings 

1936-37 Simon Flexner 

193 7~3 8 Tenney Frank 

1939-40 J ose pk Chamberlain 

1944 Charles Howard Mcllwain 

1945-46 Benjamin Dean Meritt 

1948 Linus Pauling 

1950-51 Wallace Notestein 

1951-52 Donald Stauffer 

1952-53 George Washington Corner 

1953-54 Willard Van Orman Quine 

1954-55 John Huston Finley, Jr. 

J 955-5^ Roger Sherman Loomis 

In 1952 I was informed by the British Ambassador that the 
British Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs had formed a 


committee to discuss possible scholarships from the United 
States to England as recognition of the work of General Marshall. 
I was invited by the British Government to go to England and to 
sit with this committee. The committee wished to take advan- 
tage of the experience of the Rhodes Scholarships in organizing 
their system of selection and administration. 

The task of making this plan was to me a most interesting one 
and one for which I had, of course, a great deal of preparation. 
The result was the arrangements for the administration of the 
Marshall Scholarship Scheme presented to Parliament in May 
1953 and recorded in Cmd. 8846. General Marshall was exceed- 
ingly pleased that the British Government should take this 
action in his honour, and the announcement of the Scholarships 
was received with enthusiasm both in England and in the United 
States. The Scholarships are, on the whole, similar to the RJhodes 
Scholarships, but I took pains to suggest that certain limitations 
we have experienced with the Rhodes Scholarships should be 
eradicated. The awards are open to both sexes, without restriction 
as to marriage, and more liberal arrangements have been made 
for age, stipend and travelling expenses. The first Scholars chosen 
went to England in 1954. 

One more system of Scholarships modelled on the Rhodes 
Scholarships, but for study in the state of North Carolina, has 
been established by the John Motley Morehead Foundation for 
students attending the University of North Carolina. These 
Scholarships are open to graduates of secondary schools and, 
although they are awarded on a yearly basis, the trustees have 
the policy of setting aside in connection with each appointment 
a sum of money intended to enable a man to finish his course. 
The awards are given only to students of exceptional distinction 
and promise, and no account is taken of what may happen to be 
the financial resources of the candidate. The debt of this plan 
to the Rhodes Scholarships is handsomely acknowledged in 
a general account of the scheme by Mr. Chester S. Davis in 
the Winston-Salem Journal and Sentinel for May 9, 1954. 


Another very important system of scholarships which, accord- 
ing to its founder,}. William Fulbright (Arkansas and Pembroke, 
1925) , owes its inspiration to Rhodes, is a plan for the Fulbright 
awards which were authorized by a Bill introduced by Senator 
Fulbright in the United States Senate. The objectives of this 
programme are to promote better understanding of the United 
States abroad and to increase mutual understanding between 
the people of the United States and of other countries. Students 
receiving awards are expected to exemplify the best of our own 
country and their obligation is to further the basic objectives of 
the programme. The Fulbright awards were in the first instance 
based upon funds due to the United States in the various countries 
concerned. When those funds were exhausted the exchanges 
have been continued by money appropriated by the Congress 
of the United States. 

Concerning the awards Senator Fulbright has written: 

My experience as a Rhodes Scholar was the dominant influence in 
the creation of the Fulbright awards. Coming as I did from an interior 
section of our country, quite remote and isolated from foreign associa- 
tions, the Rhodes Scholarship probably made a more vivid impact 
upon me than it did upon some of my colleagues from metropolitan 
areas. That experience, together with the devastation of the second 
world war and the existence of large uncollectable foreign credits, 
resulted in the Bill creating the scholarships. Since 1948, there have 
been -some 20,000 awards. The recipients of these awards may be 
considered as grandchildren of Cecil Rhodes, scattered throughout the 

These are the most important Scholarship systems which can 
be said in one way or another to be a result of the Rhodes 
Scholarships. There are, however, a number of excellent scholar- 
ship schemes involving smaller numbers of men, all of which 
ware inspired to a considerable degree by the Rhodes Scholar- 
ships. Among these are the Davison Fellowships, the Choate 
Fellowship to the Harvard Law School, the Procter Fellow- 
ships at Princeton, the Riggs Fellowships at the University of 
Michigan and the Henry Fellowships at Harvard and Yale. As 


American business firms come to appropriate more and more 
funds for education we may expect more scholarships founded 
on the example of Cecil Rhodes. In such ways as this has the 
example of Cecil Rhodes been followed throughout the world. 

I would like to add one or two personal comments. One of 
the great rewards of a position with the Rhodes Trust has been 
the character of the individuals with whom one came into contact 
and with whom one had the pleasure of working. It would be 
difficult to overestimate the debt of the whole Rhodes Scholar- 
ship scheme to Dr. Parkin. His patience and energy in organizing 
the Scholarships were a lesson to everyone who worked with 
him, and the cordial way in which he received the changes which 
were made in the United States was heart-warming to me and 
to everyone concerned in that movement. 

Sir Francis Wylie and his wife performed miracles in making 
the Rhodes Scholars feel at home in Oxford and in smoothing 
over all the litde causes of friction between men from different 
countries and the dons in the Oxford Colleges. Some friction 
was inevitable and I only wish I had space to tell some of the 
amusing stories of the way in which the two Wylies met and 
conquered all the difficulties which interfered with the smooth 
working of the Scholarships. 

Dr. C. K. Allen (later Sir Carleton Allen), together with 
Dorothy Allen, carried on beautifully in the Wylie tradition. The 
Aliens have probably known personally more Rhodes Scholars 
and their wives than any other official of the Trust, counting 
the men who were in residence during their tenure of office plus 
the older men who show such a persistent tendency to return to 
Oxford for visits. Mr. and Mrs. E. T. Williams, who have 
succeeded the Aliens at Rhodes House, have by their trip around 
the world already made for themselves a place in the hearts of 
Riodes Scholars everywhere. 

I became American Secretary too late to see much of Gilmour 
in the London office, but I greatly admired Geoffrey Dawson and 


keenly regretted it when he left the Rhodes Trust to become 
Editor of the London Times. He was succeeded by Sir Edward 
Grigg, now Lord Altrincham, who filled the post of Secretary 
only for a short period before he was called away by public 
duties. His successor was Philip Kerr, later Marquess of Lothian, 
who made a great contribution to the Scholarships in the fourteen 
years during which he served as Secretary before he went to 
Washington as Ambassador. Lothian had a natural affinity 
for Americans, and he was popular wherever he went and 
was never able to accept all the invitations which poured^ in 
upon him from all sides, not merely for social and speaking 
engagements, but also for golf. His conduct of the office of 
British Ambassador to the United States may be considered a 
real contribution of the Rhodes Trust to British-American rela- 
tions. His death was an equally great loss to Britain and the 
United States. When the Rhodes Trustees appointed Lord Elton 
as Lothian's successor, all the Rhodes Scholars in all countries 
who have known the Eltons felt that the Trustees had again 
fallen on their feet. 

The Trustees have been equally fortunate in filling gaps in 
their own ranks. I cannot mention all, but I want particularly 
to say how glad I am that a considerable number of the Trustees, 
such as Sir Edward Peacock, Lord Hailey, the Dean of Christ 
Church, Sir George Abell and Professor Wheare have made 
occasional visits to the United States, and have by this means 
acquired an understanding of the special problems of the admini- 
stration of the Scholarships in the United States. It is particularly 
fortunate that Lord Hailey, the Dean and the present Warden 
of Rhodes House have been able to sit as visitors with some of 
the American Committees of Selection. 

As I glance over the preceding pages, I feel that I have merely 
touched on many subjects on which I should have preferred to 
dwell at much greater length. These concern die complicated 
human problems connected with the experiences of American 
Rhodes Scholars. It is difficult to summarize in a few words the 
complex experiences of thirty-five years in an enterprise that was 


rapidly developing and changing, the more so since these changes 
were not merely mechanical but were also, and perhaps for the 
most part, changes in quality and spirit. Yet perhaps the bare 
outlines which have been described here will give some indica- 
tion, if only a faint one, of the zest and enthusiasm and the sense 
of accomplishment which have characterized this first period of 
the Rjiodes Scholarships in the United States. Certainly I 
consider that my own association with this work has been one of 
the great privileges of my life. 




IN attempting to compile records and statistics concerning 
Rhodes Scholars, one has to draw a somewhat arbitrary datum 
line. Except with regard to Athletics, I limit myself here to 
Rhodes Scholars elected up to and including the year 1949, adding 
by way of postscript later items of special interest at the time of 
going to press. Names and particulars are to be found in the 
Register of Rhodes Scholars, published by the Trustees in 1950. It 
is needless to say that since that date a great many changes have 
taken place, and these have been noted, as far as possible, in the 
records which here follow. 

When the Register was published, 2,633 Rhodes Scholars 
had been elected, of whom 3 19 were deceased. Since then 267 
have come into residence, making a total of 2,900 at this time 
of writing, which is February 1954* The total number who, at 
that date, have died is 395, 1 leaving a residue of 2,505 living 
Rhodes Scholars. Of these 72 have retired from active work. 

During the period under review 62 Scholars-elect were pre- * 
vented, for one reason or another, from taking up their Scholar- 
ships at Oxford. Eight of these were killed in action and six died 
before coming into residence; many of the remainder, elected 
for 1939, 1940 and 1941, were committed to duties or vocations 
which made it impossible for them to come to Oxford when the 
war ended. The rest, elected in much earlier years, had been 
prevented by health or other personal reasons. In the following 
records no account is taken of the careers of these 62 men, except 
that the eight who lost their lives in the field are, of course, 
reckoned among the war casualties and are commemorated with 
the other victims of war on the War Memorial at Rhodes 

The numbers with which I am concerned are, therefore, 2,571, 
arrived at by deducting from the total number elected up to 1953 

1 Postscript, April 1955. Add 26 since deceased, leaving a residue of 2,479. 



the 267 elected for 1950, 1951, 1952 and I953 1 (since it is too early 
to attempt any estimate of their vocations and careers), together 
with the 62 who were elected but never came into residence. 

The facts recorded about these 2,571 men are as accurate as 
I have been able to make them up to and including February 1^4. 
It is obvious that by the time these lines appear in print the 
figures will no longer be exact, for changes are constantly taking 
place not least, unhappily, in the obituary list, since many of 
the early Rhodes Scholars are now in their sixties and seventies. 
However, any records compiled at any time must suffer from 
this disadvantage, and it is necessary to fix a terminus ad quern even 
though it be a shifting one. 

Nor, indeed, can I claim a high degree of accuracy for any of 
these annals. The official records of the Rhodes Trust are largely 
dependent, for personal particulars, on information supplied by 
the Rhodes Scholars themselves, who are dispersed to the four 
quarters of the globe. The majority are faithful in autobiography, 
but not all are easy to reach, since addresses and occupations 
frequently change, and some are not as meticulous as others in 
returning the information forms which are sent out annually, or 
in sending news (as many do) by personal letters. From such a 
large number in so many different countries it would be too much 
to hope that particulars could always be up to date, though every 
effort is made to keep them so. Finally, where figures are con- 
cerned I cannot feel as much confidence as I should wish in my 
own mathematics. All I can hope to do is to give a general picture 
of some aspects of the lives and doings of Rhodes Scholars during 
the first half-century of the benefaction, in the hope that it may 
not be uninteresting, but also with the consciousness that it is far 
from precise in all details. 


In the two world wars, in Rhodes Scholars lost their lives on 
active service, 70 in the first and 41 in the second war. Their 

1 No account is taken of those elected for 1954. One of these was accidentally killed 
before^ coming into residence. 


names are inscribed on the walls of the Rotunda in Rhodes 

The numbers, including German Rhodes Scholars, of those 
who served in either or both of the two wars are as follows: 

In both wars .... 116 
In the first war only . . . 490 

In the second war only . . 809 

It is impossible here to give any adequate account of the 
different kinds and degrees of service rendered by Rhodes 
Scholars, either in the field or in the ramified operational and 
auxiliary services which modern warfare demands. The highest 
command in the field, in either war, was held by Lieut.~Gen. Sir 
D.S.C. (U.S.A.), Greek M.C. (ist cl), Knight of St. John 
(Victoria and New College, 1912), who commanded the First 
Australian Corps in the Papuan and New Guinea campaigns, and 
who is now Chief Justice and Lieutenant-Governor of Victoria. 
While no other Rhodes Scholar could quite approach this 
remarkable achievement in war and peace, there were many who 
held high commands in different Allied forces and won enviable 
distinctions and reputations. A notable part was played by 
American Rhodes Scholars not only tinder arms but in opera- 
tional and administrative war departments at one time there 
were about 150 so employed in Washington, of all ages and in 
a great variety of military and civil capacities. 

The value of these contributions cannot be measured in terms 
of medals and commendations, but these are at least an index to 
meritorious service. A very large number of distinctions were 
won by Riodes Scholars more, there is reason to think, than 
are on record, for not all have been notified. The following 
table, therefore, does not pretend to be complete; it shows only 
a select few of the different kinds of awards and it does not 
include any of the foreign orders, many of high rank, which 
were accorded to Rhodes Scholars by various Allied countries in 


Europe and Asia. It is to be regarded as symbolic rather than 


British Awards 

Distinguished Service Order . 9 
Distinguished Service Cross . 2 
Distinguished Flying Cross, with 

Bar . 
Distinguished Flying Cross 

Military Cross, with two Bars 
Military Cross, with Bar . 
Military Cross 

Member of the Victorian Order . 
Commander of the Order of the 

British Empire . 
Order of the British Empire 
Member of the Order of the British 


13 British Rhodes Scholars, 
4 American 




9 British, I American 
21 British, 10 American 

1 8 British, 3 American. 

United States Awards 

Medal for Merit . 
Legion of Merit . 
Distinguished Service Cross 
Air Medal 
Silver Star 
Bronze Star 

Commendation Ribbon (Army or 
Navy) .... 

42 American, 3 British 

6 American, I British 
52 American, 4 British 


It may be appropriate at this point to mention, after these 
martial achievements, the more conspicuous distinctions which 
have been conferred oa Rhodes Scholars for services and out- 
standing work in peace-time. 



Order of Merit 

Dr. WILDER G. PENHELD, C.M.G., Hon. Fellow of Merton 
College (New Jersey and Merton, 1915) (naturalized Canadian 
subject), Director of the Montreal Neurological Institute. 

Privy Councillors 
The late Rt. Hon. JAN H. HOFMEYR, Hon. Fellow of Balliol 

College (South African College School and Balliol, 1910). 
The Rt. Hon. Lord THOMSON (South African College School and 

Corpus Christi, 1911), Lord Justice Clerk of Scotland. 

Nobel Prize (shared) 

Professor Sir HOWARD FLOREY, Hon. Fellow of Lincoln and 
Magdalen Colleges, Oxford, and of Gonville and Caius 
College, Cambridge, Professor of Pathology, University 
of Oxford (South Australia and Magdalen, 1922). 

Peers 1 

The late Lord ROBINSON (formerly Sir Roy Lister Robinson), 
O.B.E., (South Australia and Magdalen, 1905), Chairman 
and later Director-General of the Forestry Commission in 
England; (First Class in Geology, Burdett Coutts Scholar 
and a triple Blue). 

The Rt. Hon. Lord THOMSON (Scottish Legal Peer) (South 
African College School and Corpus Christi, 1911), formerly 
M.P. for East Edinburgh and Lord Advocate; Lord Justice 
Clerk of Scotland. 


The honour of Knighthood has been conferred on 15 British 
Rhodes Scholars and one (naturalized British) American, and 

1 It should be borne in mind that titles (peerages, knighthoods, etc.) do not exist in 
the" United States or Canada, and are very rare in South Africa, so that less than half the 
Rhodes Scholars are eligible for them. 


the honorary ride on one American Rhodes Scholar. Their 
names and styles are as follows, in alphabetical order: 

Dr. FRANK AYDELOTTE, Hon. D.C.L. (Oxon), Hon. Fellow of 
Brasenose College (Indiana and Brasenose, 1905), President 
of Swarthmore College, 1921-40, Director of the Institute 
for Advanced Study, Princeton, I939~53; Secretary to the 
Rhodes Scholarships in the United States, 1918-52; Hon. 

K.B.E. (1953). 

Sk JOHN BEHAN (Victoria and Hertford, 1904), formerly Fellow of 
University College, Oxford; Warden of Trinity College, 
Melbourne, 1918-46; General Secretary of the Rhodes 
Scholarships in Australia, 1922-52; Kt. (1949). 

The late Sir EDMUND BRITTEN JONES (South Australia and Magdalen, 
1912), Physician (F.R.C.P.) ; Lt.-CoL, A.A.A/LC. ; Kt. (1953)* 

The late Brigadier Sir HUGH CAIRNS, F.R.C.S. (South Australia 
and Balliol, 1917), NufSeld Professor of Surgery, Oxford, 
1937-52; K.B.E. (Mil.) (1946)- 

Sir CECIL CUMINGS (Rhodesia and New College, 1924), formerly 
Chief Justice of the Sudan; K.BJE. (1952). 

Sir HOWARD FLOREY, F.R.S., Medal for Merit (U.S.A.), Hon. 
Fellow of Lincoln and Magdalen Colleges, Oxford, and of 
Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge (South Australia and 
Magdalen, 1921), Professor of Pathology, Oxford; Kt. (1944)* 

Sir ROBERT HALL (Queensland and Magdalen, 1923), C.B., for- 
merly Fellow of Trinity College, Oxford; Economic 
Adviser to H.M. Government; K.C.M.G. (1954). 

Sir KEITH HANCOCK (Australia-at-Large and Balliol, 1920), for- 
merly Fellow of All Souls College and Chichele Professor 
of Economic History, Oxford; Director, Institute of Com- 
monwealth Studies, University of London; Kt. (1953). 

Lt.~Gen. Sk EDMUND HERRING, D.S.O., M.C., Q.C., D.S.C. 
(U.S.A.), Greek M.C. (ist cl), Hon. D.CX. (Oxon), Hon. 
Fellow of New College (Victoria and New College, 1912), 
Chief Justice and Lieutenant-Governor of Victoria; K.BJB. 
(1944), KX.M.G. (1947), Knight of St. John (1953)- 


Sir HERBERT HOWARD (Rhodesia and Exeter, 1908), formerly 
Inspector-General of Forests to the Government of India; 
Secretary to the Commonwealth Agricultural Bureau; Kt. 


Sir RICHARD NOSWORTHY (Jamaica and Christ Church, 1905), 
formerly British Minister to Bolivia and Commercial 
Minister to the British Embassy, Rio de Janeiro and Rome; 
K.C.M.G. (1945). 

Brigadier Sir ARTHUR PORRITT, F.R.C.S., O.B.E., C.B.E., Legion 
of Merit (U.S.A.) (New Zealand and Magdalen, 1923), Sur- 
geon, Sergeant Surgeon to H.M. the Queen; K.C.M.G. 

Sir DAVID RJVETT, F.R.S., Hon. D.Sc. (Oxon), Hon. Fellow of 
Lincoln College (Victoria and Lincoln, 1907), formerly Chief 
Executive Officer and Chairman, Commonwealth Council 
for Scientific and Industrial Research (retired 1949); 
K.C.M.G. (1935)- 

Sir ELLIS ROBINS, D.S.O. (Pennsylvania and Christ Church, 1904) 
(naturalized British subject), Resident Director in Africa of 
die British South Africa Co.; Kt. (1946), K.B.E. (1954). 

Sir ALLAN SMITH, M.C. (Bermuda and St. Johns, 1912), formerly 
Chief Justice of Sierra Leone; Kt. (1954). 

Sir ROBERT TREDGOLD, C.M.G. (Rhodesia and Hertford, 1919), 
Chief Justice of Southern Rhodesia; Kt. (1950). 

Sir JOHN WADDINGTON, G.B.E., C.M.G., O.BJS. (Bermuda and 
Merton, 1909), formerly Governor of Barbados (1938-41) 
and Northern RJhodesia (1941-47); K.C.M.G. (1939), 
K.C.V.O. (I947). 1 

1 Add (April 1955): 


Sir ROBERT TREDGOLD, Kt., C.M.G. (Rhodesia and Hertford, 1919), Chief Justice and 
Acting Governor of Southern Rhodesia. 


Sir J. TROUNSEIL GILBERT (Bermuda and Brasenose, 1907), Chief Justice of Bermuda. 

Sir ERIC THOMAS, C.M.G., O.B.E., M.C. (Rhodesia and Brasenose, 1910), Judge of the 
High Court of Southern Rhodesia. 

Sir ALAN WATT (New South Wales and Oriel, 1921), Australian Commissioner, Singa- 
pore, with personal rank of Ambassador. 

Sir ROLAND WILSON, C.B.E. (Tasmania and Oriel, 1925), Secretary to the Common- 
wealth Treasury, Australia. 



The C.B. has been conferred on 2 Rhodes Scholars, the C.V.O. 
on one, the C.M.G. on 14 and the C.B.E. on n. Many others 
have been awarded the M.B.E. and O.B.E. 


The following are some details of prizes and special distinctions 
won at Oxford. 


One Rhodes Scholar is the Head of a House at Oxford, viz. 
the Very Rev. JOHN LOWE (Ontario and Christ Church, 1922), 
Dean of Christ Church, who was Vice-Chancellor from 1948 to 


Four Rhodes Scholars at present hold Professorships at Oxford, 
viz. A. EWERT (Manitoba and St. Johns, 1912), Romance Lan- 
guages; Sir HOWARD FLOREY (South Australia and Magdalen, 
1921), Pathology; K. C WHEARE (Victoria and Oriel, 1929), 
Gladstone Professor of Government and Public Administration; 
and the Rev. C. A. SIMPSON (Prince Edward Island and Christ 
Church, 1916), Regius Professor of Hebrew and Canon of Christ 

Two other Professorships have been held, by the late Sir HUGH 
CAIRNS (South Australia and Balliol, 1917), Nuffield Professor of 
Surgery, and Sir KEITH HANCOCK (Australia-at-Large and Balliol, 
1920), Chichele Professor of Economic History, 1944-49. 
W. W. ROSTOW {Connecticut and Balliol, 1936) was Harmsworth 
Professor of American History for 1946-47 and L. H. GIPSON 
(Idaho and Lincoln, 1904) for 1951-52. S. H. BEER (Michigan and 
Balliol, 1932) was Fulbright Professor at Oxford, 1953-54. 

Honorary Fellows 

Their Colleges have elected to Honorary Fellowships the 
following 14 Rhodes Scholars: 

Dr* FRANK AYDELOTTE (Indiana and Brasenose, 1905) (see above). 


K. H. BAILEY (Victoria and Corpus Christi, 1918), Solicitor- 
General, Commonwealth of Australia. 
Dr. F. C. J. MARIUS BARBEAU (Quebec and Oriel, 1907), Ethnologist 

and Folk-Lorist to the Canadian Government. 
BRAND BLANSHARD (Michigan and Merton, 1913), Professor of 

Philosophy, Yale University. 
The Hon. A. VAN DE S. CENTLIVRES (South African College School 

and New College, 1907), Chief Justice of the Union of South 

Sir HOWARD FLOREY (South Australia and Magdalen, 1921) (see 

above), also Hon. Fellow of Caius College, Cambridge. 
The Hon. J. W. FULBRIGHT (Arkansas and Pembroke, 1925), 

United States Senator and author of the Bill which estab- 
lished the Fulbright Scholarships. 
Sir EDMUND HERRING (Victoria and New College, 1912) (see 

The late Rt. Hon. JAN H. HOFMEYR (South African College School 

andBalliol, 1910). 
The late Dr. EDWIN P. HUBBLE (Illinois and Queens, 1910), 

Astronomer, of Mount Wilson and Palomar. 
Dr. WILDER G. PENHELD, O.M. (New Jersey and Merton, 1914) 

(see above). 
His Excellency J. E. READ (Nova Scotia and University, 1910), 

Judge of the International Court. 

Sir DAVID RJVETT (Victoria and Lincoln, 1907) (see above). 
H. J. ROSE, F.B.A. (Quebec andBalliol, 1904), Emeritus Professor 

of Greek, St. Andrews University, Scotland; Hon. Fellow 

of Exeter College. 1 

Honorary Degrees 

Of those mentioned in the preceding list, 9 have been re- 
cipients of Honorary Degrees from the University of Oxford, 
viz. Dr. AYDELOTTE (D.C.L.), Dr. BARBEAU (D.Litt.), Chief 

*Add (April 1955): 

H. A. MOB (U.S.A.-at-Large and Brasenose, 1919), Secretary and Secretary-General, 
John Simon Guggenheim Foundation. 

J. M. HAKLAN (New Jersey and Balliol, 1920), Associate Justice of the Supreme Court 
of the United States. 


Justice CENTLIVUES (D.C.L.), Mr. Justice J. E. READ (D.C.L.), 
(D.C.L.)* the late Dr. EDWIN P. HUBBLE (D.Sc.); together with 
R A. ROBERTSON (British Columbia and Balliol, 1923), High 
Commissioner for Canada in the United Kingdom (D.C.L.). 


Twenty-three Rhodes Scholars have at one time and another 
been elected Fellows (other than Professorial Fellows) of different 
Colleges at Oxford, 9 from Australia, 5 from South Africa, 4 from 
the United States, 3 from Canada and 2 from New Zealand. 
Four of these have been elected to Fellowships, other than Pro- 
fessorial Fellowships, of All Sods viz. J. G. ARCHIBALD (Quebec 
and New College, 1904), R C. CORBETT (Quebec and Balliol, 1915), 
Sir KHTH HANCOCK (Australia-at-Large and Balliol, 1920) and 
the late R. T. E. LATHAM (Victoria and Magdalen, 1931) -(killed on 
active service, 1943). A number of other Rhodes Scholars have 
held University Readerships, Lecturerships and Demonstrator- 
ships. Tutorial Fellowships are at present held by 4 Rhodes 
Scholars viz. G. L. CAWEWBLL (New Zealand and Christ Church, 
1946) (University), J. S. DE WET (Cape Province and Ballicl, 
1935) (Balliol), E. W. GRAY (South Australia and Christ Church, 
1932) (Student of Christ Church) and A. M. HONORE (Diocesan 
College, Rondebosch, and New College, 1940) (Queen's). 1 

Senior Demyships of Magdalen College have been won by 7 
Rhodes Scholars (4 Americans, 2 Australians and I South 
African), the Senior Hulme Scholarship ofBrasenose College by 4 
(2 Australians," 2 South Africans), the Harmsworth Scholarship of 
Merton College by 2 (i Canadian, I Australian), Studentships of 
Nuffield College by 7 (3 Americans, i Canadian, I Australian, I 
South African and i Indian). 

1 Add (1955): 

G. V. SMTTHBRS (Natal and Hertford, 1930, Reader in English Language, University of 
Oxford), Professorial Fellow, Merton College. 
A. E. GOTIJEB (Manitoba and Christ Church, 1951), Fellow of Wadham College. 


The prizes and awards won by Rhodes Scholars in different 
Colleges for good work in studies or in leadership are too numer- 
ous to mention in detail, and the following list is confined to 
competitive prizes offered by the University in accordance with 
a large variety of special benefactions. For convenience, these 
distinctions are listed in the alphabetical order of their names, 
without any attempt to distinguish between them in point of 
prestige, intensity of competition or monetary value. All Oxford 
men, however, will know that some are of greater honorific 
quality than others. The figures indicate in each case the number 
of Rhodes Scholars who have won the distinction by competi- 
Matthew Arnold Memorial Prize (English Essay). 3 (2 U.S. A., 

I Australia). 

Arteaga Essay Prize (Spanish), i (Canada). 
Beit Senior Research Fellowship (Colonial History). 5 (2 Canada, 

I Australia, i New Zealand, I U.S.A.). 
Beit Memorial Fellowship for Medical Research. 4 (2 Australia, 

i Newfoundland, i U.S. A.). 

Beit Prize (Colonial History). 4 (a Canada, I U.S.A., i Australia). 
Boden Sanskrit Scholarship, i (Canada). 

Brassey Studentship (History), i (Canada) in 1905. This Student- 
ship has since been discontinued. 
Burdett-Coutts Scholarship (Geology).* 4 (i Canada, i Australia, 

i New Zealand, i U.S.A.). 

Cecil Peace Prize (Essay). 2 (i Australia, i U.S.A.). 
Chancellors English Essay Prize. 2 (U.SJL). 
Chancellor's Latin Prize, i (Canada). 
Davis Scholarship (Chinese), i (U.S.A.). 
Eldon Law Scholarship. 3 (Australia). 
Gibbs Scholarship (Modem History), i (Australia). 
Gladstone Essay Prize (Political History and Theory). 3 (2 Canada, 

j U.S.A.). 
Francis Gotch Prize (Physiology). 5 (3 Australia, 2 Canada). 


Canon Hall Greek Testament Prize (Junior), i (U.S.A.). 

Heath Harrison Scholarship (Modern Languages]. 3 (2 New Zealand, 

1 Australia). 

Robert Herbert Memorial Prize (Colonial History) (associated with 
the Beit Prize, q.v. above). 5 (4 Canada, i U.S.A.). 

George Herbert Hunt Travelling Scholarship (Medicine}. I (Canada). 

Ireland and Craven Scholarship (Classics), i (Canada), 

Mathematical (Senior) Scholarship. I (South Africa). 

George Webb Medley Scholarships (Economics) (Senior and Junior). 
6 (3 U.SJL, i Canada, I Australia, i South Africa). 

Newdigate Prize for English Verse. 4 (2 Canada, I Australia, i 
U.S.A.). i Prox. ace. (Canada). 

Charles Oldham Scholarship (Shakespeare). 2 (i Australia, i New 

Charles Oldham Prize (Classical Literature), i (U.S.A.). 

Henry Francis Pelham Studentship (at British School in Rome), i 

Radcliffe Prize (Furtherance of Medical Science). 4 (3 Canada, i 
South Africa). 

Radcliffe Travelling Fellowship (Medicine), i (New Zealand). 

Rolkston Memorial Prize (Medicine and Anthropology). 2 (Aus- 

* Scott Scholarship (Physics). 3 (i Australia, i New Zealand, i 

Stanhope Historical Essay, i (U.S.A.). 

Vinerian Law Scholarship. 15 (5 Australia, 5 U.S.A., 3 Canada, 

2 South Africa). 

Philip Walker Studentship (Pathology), i (Australia). 
Christopher Welch Scholarship (Biology). 2 (i Australia, i U.S.A.). 
Theodore Williams Scholarships (Anatomy, Physiology and Patho- 
logy). 8 (3 South Africa, 2 Canada, 2 Australia, i Jamaica). 


General Note. In giving an account of the occupations which 
Rhodes Scholars have followed in what Mr. Rhodes called 'after- 


life', one is again obliged to be somewhat arbitrary. Many 
Rhodes Scholars have changed their vocations from time to 
time for example, not a few have begun in academic work and 
have later gone into other professions. Many others might be 
classified under one of several heads thus, most of those who 
have become known as authors, either of learned works or of 
general (including 'creative') literature in prose or verse, have 
not been engaged in writing as a whole-time occupation. The 
majority of those who have been concerned in politics in different 
countries have had a separate profession, especially law. Again, 
there is a considerable group whom it is difficult to classify under 
any of the ordinary vocations, and these I have to place under the 
colourless heading of 'Miscellaneous*, with only an inadequate 
indication of the variety of their pursuits. 

In what follows I have adopted the plan of reckoning each 
Rhodes Scholar in the vocation with which he has been specially 
identified, but if he has had several distinct careers (as has often 
happened) I have not hesitated to reckon him in several different 
capacities. This necessarily means that the figures given here for 
different branches of 'after-life' will not tally with the number of 
Rhodes Scholars elected. The method, I must admit, is rough- 
and-ready, but it may serve to give a general picture of the 
occupations to which Rhodes Scholars have devoted themselves, 
and that is my aim rather than a precise statistical computation 
which is, indeed, impracticable. 

The various headings which I have chosen again arbitrarily 
for classification are given in alphabetical order, with explanatory 
notes where they seem to be necessary. 


Under this heading are placed those Rhodes Scholars whose 
principal occupation is, or has been, teaching in Universities, 
Colleges and comparable institutions. Many, and especially 
medical men and lawyers, are qualified in, and sometimes 
practise, other professions, but are to be regarded as primarily 
instructors in their subjects. 


I do not attempt to distinguish between different academic 
ranks, such as Associate, Assistant and full Professor. Still less do 
I attempt the difficult and invidious task of discriminating between 
the standing and reputations of academic Rhodes Scholars in 
their different fields of specialization. It is enough to say that 
high reputations for learning have been established by a con- 
siderable group of Rhodes Scholars including, indeed, some 
reputations which are world-wide; but to venture on any kind 
of hierarchy or qualitative analysis would require greater hardi- 
hood and much greater knowledge than I should presume to 
claim. The names of those who stand highest in the world of 
learning are, in any case, sufficiently well known to their fellow- 

The total number of Rhodes Scholars who have adopted the 
academic vocation is 618, of whom 58 are deceased. It may be 
of interest to tabulate the different subjects which they have 

Administration (Business), 3 ; Agriculture (including Agronomy and 
Animal Husbandry), 4; Anthropology ; 8; Astronomy, i; Botany and 
Plant Physiology, 6; Chemistry, 16; Classics, 51; Ecology, i; Econo- 
mics, 40; Education, 6; Engineering (including Mechanics and Mining 
and Electrical Engineering}, 10; English (including Literature and 
American Literature), 118; Forestry, i; Genetics, i; Geography, 2; 
Geology, i; Government, 12; History (Modern, including Economic 
History), 79; Law (including International Law], 43; Mathematics, 
22; Medicine (all branches), 42; Mineralogy, i; Modern Languages 
(including Romance Languages], 30; Music, i; Oriental Studies 
(Chinese], i; Philosophy, 28; Physics, 20; Political Science, 28; 
Psychology, 6; Sanskrit, i; Slavonic Studies, i; Social Studies, 5; 
Theology (including New Testament History, New Testament Greek, 
Hebrew, Church History and Missions], 18; Zoology, 4. In addition, 
7 have been engaged in University administration, as Registrars, 
Assistants to Presidents, etc. 

'Arts' or 'humane* teachers predominate by more than 300 per 
cent over natural scientists, the largest single group being in 


English Language and Literature and associated literary studies 
(116). Modern History comes second (81) and the Classics (51) 
in the next place. 

Heads of Universities 

One of the most interesting features of the academic record of 
Rhodes Scholars is the number, especially in the United States, 
who have become Heads of Universities and other institutions of 
higher education. At the present time 24 Rhodes Scholars are 
Heads (President, Chancellor, Vice-Chancellor, etc.) of Univer- 
sities in different countries, as follows: 

United States (17). (Listed in order of seniority of Rhodes Scholars) 
Jacksonville Junior College Q. A. BROWN, New Hampshire and 

New College, 1904). 
Union Theological Seminary, Richmond, Va. (B. R. LACY, 

North Carolina and Worcester, 1907). 
University of Alabama (O. C. CARMICHAEL, Alabama and 

Wadham, 1913) (see p. 254 below). 
Vanderbilt University (HARVIE BRANSCOMB, Alabama and 

Wadham, 1914). 
Atlantic Christian College (H. S. HJIXEY, Kentucky and Jesus, 

State University of Iowa (V. M. HANCHER, Iowa and Worcester, 

Trinity College, Hartford, Conn. (A. C. JACOBS, Michigan and 

Oriel, 1921, formerly Chancellor of the University of Denver 

and sometime Fellow of Oriel College, Oxford). 
OberHn College (W. E. STEVENSON, New Jersey and Balliol, 

Columbia Theological Seminary, Decatur, Ga. (J. McD. 

RICHARDS, North Carolina and Christ Church, 1923). 
Wilson College, Pa. (P. S. HAVENS, New Jersey and University, 

Pomona College, CaL (E. WILSON LYON, Mississippi and St. 

Johns, 1925). 


Kenyon College, Ohio (G. K. CHALMERS, Rhode Island and 
Wadham, 1926). 

Tennessee Polytechnic Institute (W. E. DERRYBERRY, Tennessee 
and St. Johns, 1928). 

Purdue University, Ind. (F. L. HOVDE, North Dakota and 
Brasenose, 1929)- 

University of Maryland (WILSON H. ELKINS, Texas and Oriel, 
1933, formerly President of Texas Western College). 

Swarthmore College (COURTNEY C. SMITH, Iowa and Merton, 

In addition, 15 other Rhodes Scholars, of whom 2 are de- 
ceased, have in the past been Heads for a time of the following 
Universities and Colleges in U.S.A. : Reed College, Oregon (R. F. 
SCHOLZ, Wisconsin and Worcester, 1904, deed. 1924); University 
of Florida (J. J. TIGERT, Tennessee and Pembroke, 1904, retired 
1947); Swarthmore College (F. AYDELOTTE (1921-40), Indiana 
and Brasenose, 1905, andj. W. NASON (1940-53), Minnesota and 
Oriel, 1928); Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton (F. AYDE- 
IOTTE, 1939-47, retired); Union College, Schenectady (F. P. 
DAY, New Brunswick and Christ Church, 1905, deed. 1950); 
Averett College, Va. (1917-21), and Columbia Military Academy, 
Tenn. (1921-25) (C. E. CROSLAND, Alabama and Wadham, 1910); 
Illinois College, Jacksonville (H. G. HUDSON, Illinois and Queen's, 
1911); Bard College (C. H. GRAY, Washington and Lincoln, 1914); 
St. John's College (F. STRINGBELLOW BARR, Virginia and Balliol, 
1917); Haverford College (F. M. MORLEY, Maryland and New 
College, 1919); University of Nevada (J. O. MOSELEY, Oklahoma 
and Merton, 1917); University of Oklahoma (J. A. BRANDT, 
Oklahoma and Lincoln, 1921); University of Rochester (A. 
VALENTINE, Pennsylvania and Balliol, 1922); University of Arkan- 
sas (J. W. FULBRIGHT, Arkansas and Pembroke, 1925); University 
of Denver (C. F. GATES, New Jersey and Balliol, 1926); Bethany 
College, Kan. (E. K. LINDQUIST, Kansas and Jesus, 193 )- C. H. 
HARING (Massachusetts and New College, 1907) was Master of 
Dunster House, Harvard, from 1934 to 1948; MASON HAMMOND 


(Massachusetts and Balliol, 1925) is Master of Kirkland House, 
Harvard, and T. C. MENDENHALL (Wisconsin and Balliol, 1933) 
of Berkeley College, Yale. 

England (i) 

University of Birmingham (R. S. AITKEN, New Zealand and 
Balliol, 1924, formerly Regius Professor of Medicine, Uni- 
versity of Aberdeen, and Vice-Chancellor of the University 
of Otago, N.Z., 1948-52). 

Canada (i) 

University of Bishop's College, Lennoxville, P.Q. (A. R. 
JEWTTT, Nova Scotia and Corpus Christi, 1927). 

Australia (2) 
University of Melbourne (G. W. PATON, Victoria and Magdalen, 

Canberra University College (H. BURTON, Queensland and 

Queens, 1922). 

Hong Kong (i) 

University of Hong Kong (CoL L. T. RIDE, C.B.E., Victoria 
and New College, 1922). 

Sudan (i) 

University College of Khartoum (L. C. WILCHER, South 
Australia and Balliol, 1930). 

Other Institutions 

Some 18 Rhodes Scholars have beenHeads of other institutions 
of higher or technical education, such as seminaries, technical and 
agricultural colleges and medical research institutes. Of these 13 
at present hold such appointments, 5 in Australia, 4 in U.S.A., 
2 in South Africa, i in England and i in Brazil. 


Of these there have been 9, 2 of whom are deceased. 



Six, of whom 3 are Principals of Agricultural Institutes or 
Colleges (E. A. SOUTHEE, New South Wales and St. Johns, 1913; 
R. N. McCuLLOCH, New South Wales and New College, 1926 
(succeeding A. R. CALLAGHAN, C.M.G., New South Wales and 
St. Johns, 1925) ; and W. J. GARNETT, Ontario and New College, 


There have been 3, other than those holding teaching posts. 
Of these, R E. WILLIAMS (South Australia andBalliol, 1915), who 
did distinguished work as Government Anthropologist in 
Australia and Papua, was killed in an aircraft accident in 1943- 
Of the surviving two, T. K. PENNIMAN (Vermont and Trinity, 
1917), well known for his writings, is Curator of the Pitt Rivers 
Museum, University of Oxford. 






Commerce, in one or other of its many branches, has attracted 
239 Rhodes Scholars, of whom 34 are deceased and 8 have 
retired. A number of these men have risen to positions of high 
executive responsibility. C. E. NEWTON (New Hampshire and 
Brasenose, 1920) has been President of the Chesapeake and Ohio 
Railway Co.; C. E. SALTZMAN (Maryland, West Point and Mag- 
dalen, 1925) was formerly Secretary and Vice-President of the 
New York Stock Exchange; while others in the United States 
too numerous to name are presidents, vice-presidents and 
directors of various flourishing banks and commercial corpora- 
tions. In Canada, HENRY BORDEN, Q.C. (Nova Scotia and Exeter, 


1924), son of a former Prime Minister of Canada and a double 
Blue at Oxford, is President of the Brazilian Traction, Light and 
Power Co. and a Director of the Canadian Bank of Commerce; 
while A. E. GRAUER (British Columbia and University, 1927), an 
Olympic lacrosse player, is President of the British Columbia 
Power Corporation, Ltd., and the British Columbia Electric 
Railway Co., Ltd., besides being chairman of various other 
companies. 1 

Since profit is the purpose of business, and since Cecil Rhodes 
believed in money as a means to influence, it is worth mentioning 
that, although many Rhodes Scholars have attained considerable 
worldly prosperity, none, so far as is known, has achieved wealth 
on the grand or Rhodes scale. If any ever does so, will his 
thoughts perhaps turn in the same direction as those of Cecil 


(other than those teaching this science, being chiefly in industry) 
These number 46, of whom 4 are deceased. 


These number 62, of whom 14 are deceased and 2 have retired. 
Six have been missionaries in various foreign fields; several others 
have engaged in school teaching. The highest ecclesiastical rank 
was reached by the late Rt. Rev. L. R. SHERMAN (New Brunswick 
and Christ Church, 1909), who, after being Bishop of Calgary for 
sixteen years, was Archbishop of Rupert's Land from 1943 to 
the time of his death in 1953 . The Rt. Rev. BEVERLEY D. TUCKER 
(Virginia and Christ Church, 1905) was Bishop of Ohio from 1938 
until his retirement in 1953, As has been mentioned, the Very 
Rev. JOHN LOWE (Ontario and Christ Church, 1922) is Dean of 
Christ Church, Oxford, and the Rev. C. A. SIMPSON (Prince 
Edward Island and Christ Church, 1916) is Canon of Christ Church 
and Regius Professor of Hebrew, Oxford. (It will be seen that 

1 Add (1955): J. E. COYNE (Manitoba and Queen's, 1931), Governor of the Bank of 
Canada; and J. R. BEATTTE (Manitoba and Queen's, 1930), Deputy-Governor of the same. 


Rhodes Scholars have well maintained the theological tradition 
of Christ Church.) From 1922 to 1953, when he retired, the late 
Rev. W. L. SPERRY (Michigan and Queens, 1904) was Dean of 
the Divinity School, Harvard. Heads of Theological Seminaries 
are included above under 'Heads of Universities'. 


Rhodes Scholars to the number of 37 (5 deceased, 3 retired) 
have held official appointments in the Colonial Service in different 
parts of the world, but chiefly in Africa. This group contains the 
only Rhodes Scholar who has reached the rank of a Colonial 
Governor, Sir JOHN WADDINGTON (Bermuda and Merton, 1909, 
see p. 225 above). Sir ALLAN SMITH (Bermuda and St. John's, 
1912, seep. 225 above) was formerly Chief Justice of Sierra Leone, 
Sir CECIL CUMINGS (Rhodesia and New College, 1924, see p. 224 
above) was formerly Chief Justice of the Sudan, Sir J. TROUNSELL 
GILBERT {Bermuda andBrasenose, 1907) is Chief Justice of Bermuda 
and E. D. HONE (Rhodesia and New College, 1939), formerly 
Colonial Secretary, British Honduras, is Chief Secretary, Aden. 


This form of service, so appropriate for Rhodes Scholars, has 
attracted 69 of them (4 deceased), and of recent years has claimed 
more and more, especially in the Departments of External Afiairs 
of Canada and Australia. Some 17 have represented their 
countries in diplomatic capacities; their names and appointments 
are given in order of seniority as Rhodes Scholars. 

Sir RICHARD NOSWORTHY (Jamaica and Christ Church, 1905, 
see p. 225 above), formerly British Minister to Bolivia and 
Commercial Minister to the British Embassy, Rio de 
Janeiro and Rome. 

S. K. HORNBECK (Colorado and Christ Church, 1904), formerly 
Chief, Division of Far Eastern Affairs, U.S. Department of 
State, later Adviser on Political Relations; U.S. Ambassador 
to the Netherlands, 1944-47. 


G. B. STOCKTON (Florida and Christ Church, 1914), Envoy 
Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary to Australia, 

B. M. HULLEY (Florida and Christ Church, 1917), Chief, Division 

of N. European Affairs, U.S. Department of State, attached 

American Embassy, London, 1948-54. 
T. W. L. MACDERMOT (Quebec and Netv College, 1918), 

Canadian Ambassador to Greece and to Israel. 
Sir ALAN WATT (New South Wales and Oriel, 1921), formerly 

Australian Ambassador to U.S.S.R., Australian Commis- 
sioner, Singapore (with personal rank of Ambassador). 
D. MOFFAT JOHNSON (Quebec andBalliol, 1923), formerly High 

Commissioner for Canada to Pakistan, Permanent Canadian 

Delegate to the United Nations. 
A. D. P. HEENEY (Manitoba and St. Johns, 1923), Canadian 

Ambassador to the United States of America. 
N. A. ROBERTSON (British Columbia and Balliol, 1923), High 

Commissioner for Canada to the U.K., 1941-46, and since 

LHF EGELAND (Natal and Trinity, 1924, formerly Fellow of 

Brasenose College, Oxford), High Commissioner for the 

Union of South Africa to the U.K., 1948-50, 
W. WALTON BUTTERWORTH (Louisiana and Worcester, 1924), 

formerly Assistant Secretary of State for Far Eastern Affairs, 

United States Ambassador to Sweden, 1950-53, Minister 

and Deputy Chief, U.S. Mission, London. 
J. D. L. HOOD (Tasmania and Magdalen, 1926), Australian 

Minister to Indonesia, 1950-52, Australian Ambassador to 

the German Federal Republic and Head of the Australian 

Military Mission to Germany. 
ESCOTT M. REID (Ontario and Christ Church, 192 7) , High 

Commissioner for Canada to the Republic of India. 
DEAN RUSK (North Carolina and St. Johns, 1931), Deputy 

Under-Secretary of State, U.S. Department of State, 



L, R. MclNTYRE (Tasmania and Exeter, 193 3), Senior External 

Affairs Representative (with rank of Minister), Office of the 

High Commissioner for Australia, London. 

LINCOLN GORDON (New York and Balliol, i933)> United States 

Minister for Economic Affairs, American Embassy, London. 

G. C. McGHEE (Oklahoma and Queens, 193 4), United States 

Ambassador to Turkey, 1951-53. 

Eleven of the German Riodes Scholars (4 deceased) entered 
the Diplomatic or Consular Services. Notable among them were 
Count ALBRECHT BERNSTORFF (Trinity, 1909), formerly First 
Secretary to the German Embassy in London, and ADAM VON 
TROTT zu SOLZ (Balliol, 1931), both of whom, as opponents of 
the Nazi regime, suffered death at the hands of the Gestapo; 
while Baron MARSCHAIX VON BIEBERSTEIN (Christ Church, 1913)* 
formerly Secretary of Legation, fell into Russian hands in 1945 
and is believed (if alive) to be still held a prisoner. 


Rhodes Scholars in this vocation, which in most cases is 
associated with business or banking concerns, number 20, of 
whom one is deceased. 


In different branches of engineering general, mining, elec- 
trical, highways, consulting and surveying 79 Rliodes Scholars 
have been engaged. Seven are deceased and one has retired. 


Thirty-six Rhodes Scholars have 'gone on the land', in many 
instances after, or concurrently with, other occupations. Four 
are deceased. 


The 19 Rhodes Scholar foresters (5 deceased, I retired) have 
all been in Forestry Services in different countries and are here 
reckoned separately from the Colonial Service. The late Lord 
ROBINSON (Smith Australia and Magdalen, 1905, see p. 223 above) 


was Director-General of the Forestry Commission in England 
and Sir HERBERT HOWARD (Rhodesia and Exeter, 1908, see p. 225 
above) was formerly Inspector-General of Forests to the Govern- 
ment of India. 


These number 15 (3 deceased, i retired), who are chiefly 
mining, oil and consulting practitioners. The late C. T. MADIGAN 
(South Australia and Magdalen, 1911) did important work in 
reconnaissance of the geology of Central Australia. 


This is a very wide category and includes those who have 
worked, under the Governments of different countries, as special- 
ists in many different departments of the modern State such as 
agriculture, education, customs revenue, native affairs, econo- 
mics, trigonometrical survey, pensions, national film boards, 
the United States High Court Commission, commerce, labour 
relations, legal services. Nothing has been more notable in recent 
years than die increasing number of Rhodes Schokrs who have 
entered national and international organizations, and, taken in 
conjunction with those who have devoted themselves to foreign 
affaks (see under 'DIPLOMATIC AND CONSULAR') and politics (see 
p. 248 below), they make a very substantial contribution to that 
'public service* which Mr. Rhodes specified as the highest aim 
for his Scholars though there are, of course, many other voca- 
tions which can and do contribute to the same end. 

167 Rhodes Scholars may be grouped under this heading, of 
whom 15 are deceased and 5 have retired. Twelve are at present 
attached to various international organizations the LL.O., the 
Inter-Allied Reparation Commission, the United Nations (a 
pleasing variety here 2 U.S.A., I Canada, I New Zealand, 
i South Africa), U.N.E.S.C.O., the International Bank, E.C.A., 
the Mutual Security Agency, the International Children's 
Emergency Fund. 

It is, perhaps, a little invidious to discriminate between the 



distinction and responsibilities of these public servants in so many 
different fields, but there are some whose names are outstanding. 
C. D. MAHAFHE (Oklahoma and St. John's, 1905) has been for 
long past a member, twice Chairman, and now Chairman of the 
Administrative and Finance Divisions of that very important 
body, the Interstate Commerce Commission. H. SOMERVILLE 
SMITH, C.M.G., D.S.O., O.B.E., M.C. (Ontario and New College, 
1912), was formerly Comptroller-General of the Export Credits 
Guarantee Department, London (retired 1952). W. F. CRAW- 
FORD, CJVLG., O.B.E. (New South Wales and New College, 1915). 
is Head of the Development Division, British Middle East Office, 
Cairo. K. H. BAILEY, C.B.E. (Victoria and Corpus Christi, 1918), 
is Solicitor-General to the Commonwealth of Australia. H. T. P. 
BINET (New Brunswick and Exeter, 1921) is Director of the Inter- 
national Labour Office, Geneva. GRAHAM SPRY (Manitoba and 
University, 1922) is Agent-General for the Government of 
Saskatchewan in the U.K. W. P. MADDOX (Maryland and Hert- 
ford, 1922) is Director of the Foreign Service Institute, U.S. 
Department of State. Sir ROBERT HALL (Queensland and Mag- 
dalen, 1923, see p. 224 above) is Economic Adviser to H.M. 
Government Sir ROLAND WILSON (Tasmania and Oriel, 1925) 
is Secretary to the Commonwealth Treasury, Australia. E. E. 
BAILEY, C.B., C.B.E. (New Zealand and Magdalen, 1929) , is 
Principal Finance Officer to the Ministry of Food, London. 
L. G. HOPKINS, O.B.E. (Queensland and Balliol, 1932), is Chief 
Statistical Officer to the Commonwealth of Australia. In the 
international sphere, B. E. LANE TIMMONS (Georgia and Balliol, 
1938) is Deputy Director, E.C.A. Mission to France. 1 

1 Add (April 1955): 

R. W. BUHGESS (Rhode Island and Lincoln, 1908), Under-Secretary of the United States 

E. RUSSELL HOPKINS (Saskatchewan and Queen's, 1932), Secretary and Director-General, 
Board of Transport Commission of Canada. 

J. H. INGHAM (Rhodesia and Brasenose, 1932), Secretary for African Affairs, Nyasaland. 

L. A. LARSON (South Dakota and Pembroke, 1932), United States Under-Secretary of 

J. R. BALDWIN (Ontario and Christ Church, 1934), Deputy Minister of Transport, Air, 

D. A. GOLDEN (Manitoba and Queen's, 1941), Deputy Minister, Department of Defence 
Production, Canada. 



Three (i deceased, 2 retired). 


Many Rhodes Scholars have, of course, engaged in occasional 
journalism, but the 65 (6 deceased) who are pkced under this 
heading are those who have made it their regular profession. A 
number of them have made reputations as editors, contributors 
and commentators. ELMER DAVIS (Indiana and Queen's, 1910) is 
mentioned under the heading 'WRITING, ETC/, p. 251 below. 
R. P. BRANDT (Missouri and Lincoln, 1918) is well known as the 
political commentator of the St. Louis Post-Despatch and as head 
of its bureau at Washington. CLARENCE K. STREIT (Montana and 
University, 1918), famous as author of Union Noiv, continues to 
preach his gospel as President of Federal Union, Inc., and Editor 
of Freedom and Union. E. K. LINDLEY (Idaho and Pembroke, 1920) 
has a large public both as a journalist and a radio commentator. 
G. V. FERGUSON (Alberta and Christ Church, 1921) is Editor of the 
Montreal Daily Star. ]. W. SAGMASTER (Ohio and Lincoln, 1925) 
both writes and broadcasts from Cincinnati with authority. 
Perhaps the best-known editorship is held by E. D. CANHAM 
(Maine and Oriel, 1926), of the Christian Science Monitor. T. J. 
HAMILTON (Georgia and Christ Church, 1928) has been foreign 
correspondent of the New York Times in various countries and 
is now Chief of its United Nations Bureau. G. S. Cox (New 
Zealand and Oriel, 1932) has been a widely-known war corre- 
spondent and is Assistant Editor of the London News Chronicle. 
]. FISCHER (Oklahoma and Lincoln, 1933) is, at the early age of 
forty-three, Editor-in-Chief of Harper's Magazine. P. BEUKES 
(Orange Free State and Lincoln, 1934) is Editor of Die Suiderstem 
and director of a group of associated newspapers in Cape Town. 
H. W. DONOVAN (Minnesota and Hertford, 1934) is Managing 
Editor of Fortune magazine. 


20. LAW 

Next to academic teaching, this profession has claimed the 
largest number of Rhodes Scholars 488 in all, of whom 68 are 
deceased and 7 have retired. 

The success of Rhodes Scholars as lawyers is sufficiently shown 
by the number no less than 47 (7 deceased, 3 retired) who 
hold or have held judgeships in various countries. Of these 15 
have been Chief Justices, Judge-Presidents or other judicial 
officers of similar rank. They are as follows: 

International Court. J. E. READ (Nova Scotia and University, 1910), 
Hon. Bencher of Gray's Inn. 

South Africa. A. VAN DE S. CENTLIVRES (South African College 
School and New College, 1907, see p. 227 above), Chief Justice 
of the Union of South Africa; G.J. MARITZ (Stellenbosch and 
Trinity, 1909), Judge-President of the Transvaal; F. N. 
BROOME (Natal and Oriel, 1909), Judge-President of Natal. 

Southern Rhodesia. The late VERNON LEWIS, C.M.G. (South 
African College School and New College, 1906), Chief Justice, 
1950 (deceased in the same year); Sir ROBERT TREDGOLD, 
K.C.M.G. (Rhodesia and Hertford, 1919), Chief Justice since 


Bermuda. Sir J. TROUNSEIX GILBERT, C.B.E. (Bermuda and Erase- 
nose, 1907), Chief Justice since I95 2 - 

The Sudan. Sir CECIL CUMINGS (Rhodesia and New College, 1924), 
Chief Justice, 1946 (retired). 

Sierra Leone. Sir ALLAN SMITH (Bermuda and St. Johns, 1912), 
Chief Justice, 1951-54. 

Australia. Sir EDMUND HERRING (Victoria and New College, 1912, 
see p. 221 above), Chief Justice of Victork; N. W. MAC- 
ROSS AN (Queensland and Magdalen, 1907), Chief Justice of 

Canada. T. A. CAMPBELL (Prince Edward Island and Corpus Christi, 
1917), Chief Justice of Prince Edward Island; J. T. THORSON 
(Manitoba and New College, 1910), President, Exchequer 
Court of Canada. 


Scotland. The Rt. Hon. Lord THOMSON (South African College 
School and Corpus Christi, 1911, see p. 223 above), Lord 
Justice Clerk. 

United States. 1 G. T. WASHINGTON (Connecticut and Oriel, 1929), 
Judge of the United States Court of Appeals;}. C. SHERBURNE 
(Vermont and Wadham, 1904), Chief Justice of Vermont, 

The other Rhodes Scholar judges, of whom 6 are deceased, 
have been distributed as follows: United States, 10; South Africa, 
7; Canada, 4; Australia, 4; Southern Rhodesia, 2; Newfoundland, 
2; Germany, 2; Egypt (Mixed Court), i; Malaya, i. 

The lawyers are evenly divided in the English-speaking world, 
246 coming from British constituencies and 242 from the United 
States. Of the former, 55, or nearly a quarter, have held the rank 
of Kong's or Queen's Counsel, and this represents an even higher 
proportion among British barristers, since many of the 246 
British lawyers practise as solicitors only (though in some 
constituencies as both barristers and solicitors). There is, of 
course, no corresponding hall-mark in the United States to indi- 
cate a lawyer's standing in his profession, but if there were, there 
would undoubtedly be as many 'silks' among legal Rhodes 
Scholars in America as elsewhere, for many are members of firms 
of large practice and high repute. 

A few other legal distinctions and appointments of Rhodes 
Scholars are worthy of mention. K. H. BAILEY (Victoria and 
Corpus Christi, 1918), as already noted, is Solicitor-General to the 
Commonwealth of Australia, and V. L. ROBINSON (Rhodesia and 
Keble, 1918) Attorney-General, Federation of Rhodesia and 
Nyasaland. The late T. A. L. DAVY (Western Australia and Exeter, 
1909) was Attorney-General of Western Australia, and the late 
R. J. RUDAIX (South Australia and Christ Church, 1908) Attorney- 
General of South Australia. P. J. C. SMITH (Bermuda and St. 
Edmund Hall 1942) was Solicitor-General of Bermuda 1952-54. 
F. E. HOLMAN (Utah and Exeter, 1908) was President of the 

1 Add (1955) : J. M. HAJULAN (New Jersey and Balliol, 1920), Associate Justice of the 
Supreme Court of the United States. 


American Bar Association for 1948-49 and A. N. CARTER, Q.C. 
(New Brunswick and University, 1913, father of two Rhodes 
Scholars), was President of the Canadian Bar Association for the 
same year. 


Six Rhodes Scholars, of whom 2 are deceased. 


This category of course includes Surgery, together with Public 
Health, and appointments in Ministries of Health and in such 
organizations as the Rockefeller Foundation. For the most part, 
those who are principally concerned in the teaching of different 
branches of medical science are reckoned under the heading 
'ACADEMIC', but a few of these who are also noteworthy in the 
practice of medicine or surgery are placed under the present 
classification. The line between teaching and practice in this 
science is not easy to draw, since most medical men of standing 
and experience are, at some time or other, teachers and examiners 
of students, either in theory or in clinical work. 

171 Rhodes Scholars have been medical practitioners. Out of 
this number 23 are deceased and 4 have retired. It is impossible 
here to attempt any evaluation of their professional work and 
reputations. Three names at least stand out beyond question 
those of two world-famous nemo-surgeons, Dr. WILDER PEN- 
HELD, O.M. (New Jersey and Merton, 1914, see p. 223 above), 
Director of the Montreal Neurological Institute, and the late 
Sir HUGH CAIRNS (South Australia and Balliol, 191% see p. 224 
above), who at the time of his premature death was NufEeld 
Professor of Surgery at Oxford (where in 1920 he had won a 
Rowing Blue); and Sir HOWARD FLORET (South Australia and 
Magdalen, 1921, see p. 224 above) for his famous work in 
connection with penicillin. (I have reckoned him under the 
heading 'ACADEMIC', but his name suggests itself in any account 
of medical Rhodes Scholars.) Other eminent names in the 
medical-academic world are those of W. C. DAVISON (New York 


and Merton, 1913), E- F. HOLMAN (California and St. Johns, 1914), 
J. F. FULTON (Minnesota and Magdalen, 1921) and J. C. ECCLES 
(Victoria and Magdalen, 1925). From 1933 until his retirement in 
194/7 E. McP. ARMSTRONG (Maryland and Oriel, 1905) was 
Medical Director of the Mutual Life Insurance Co. of New 
York. E. H. CLUVER (Stellenbosch and Hertford, 1914) is Director 
of die South African Institute for Medical Research, as well as 
being Professor of Preventive Medicine in the University of the 
Witwatersrand. It has already been mentioned that the honour 
of knighthood has been conferred on two Rjiodes Scholars for 
eminence in the practising medical profession the late Sir 
EDMUND BRITTEN JONES (South Australia and Magdalen, 1912) and 
Sir ARTHUR PORRTTT (New Zealand and Magdalen, 1923), a notable 
runner in his day, formerly President of the O.U.A.C. and twice 
Captain of the New Zealand Olympic Team. The study of the 
human organism is not inconsistent with its vigorous personal 
development, and, while I have not made an exact check, I think 

1 am right in saying that the medical Rhodes Scholars have 
produced more distinguished athletes than any other group. 


This has been the vocation, in managerial capacities, of 7 
Rhodes Scholars, of whom 4 are deceased. 

24. MUSIC 
Four Rhodes Scholars have adopted music as their profession. 


The group of those who have adopted the profession of arms 
is composed principally of the United States Rhodes Scholars 
elected from Annapolis (Navy) and West Point (Army). Ten 
have come from the former and 21 from the latter. Four Rjiodes 
Scholars have held regular commissions in England (2 Army, 

2 Air Force), the highest rank being that of Air Vice-Marshal 
J. R. CASSIDY, C.B.E. (Queensland and Exeter, 1913); i in India, 


2 in Canada, I in South Africa and i in Germany. The last- 
mentioned is F. R. T. VON SENGER UND ETTERLIN (St. Johns, 
1912), who was, in the last war, Commander of the German 
Forces in Sicily and Corsica and Commander of the I4th 
Armoured Corps at the Battles of Cassino and Bologna. 
The total number under this head is 40 (7 deceased, 4 retired). 


The great majority of Rhodes Scholars in this category are not 
professional or whole-time politicians. Most pursue other voca- 
tions, though some have political duties which require the greater 
part of their time and attention. 

It is often suggested that when Mr. Rhodes referred to 'public 
service*, he was thinking primarily of politics, and the criticism is 
sometimes heard that too few Rhodes Scholars have fulfilled his 
hope. There are, however, many different kinds of public 
service, and it is difficult to believe that Mr. Rhodes interpreted 
the term in any narrow sense. He must have known, as every- 
body knows, that the very entry into politics depends on the will 
of the electors, that there is no security of tenure even when entry 
has been achieved and that success and influence are subject to 
many uncertain factors which vary greatly from country to 

Actually, the number of Rhodes Scholars who have engaged 
in politics is larger than is generally supposed. According to my 
reckoning, it is 61 (10 deceased), of whom at least a third have 
gone beyond the back bench and have been entrusted with minis- 
terial or similar responsibilities not always, of course, in very 
wide spheres, but in the places where the opportunities lay, which 
is surely what the Founder would have wished. Including 
national and local (State, provincial, etc.) legislatures, the distri- 
bution has been as follows: U.S.A., 18; Canada, 16; South 
Africa, 7; Australia, 6; Bermuda, 4; Southern Rhodesia, 3 ; Great 
Britain, 2; Malta, 2; Newfoundland, 2; Jamaica, i; Germany, i. 

The most distinguished career, too early cut off, has been that 


of the late Rt. Hon. JAN H. HOFMEYR (South African College School 
and Balliol, 1910), that 'miracle of a young man' (as they said of 
Christopher Wren), whose name was known throughout the 
Commonwealth and who, if he had lived, might have been the 
second Smuts of South African and, indeed, of world politics. 
Only one Rhodes Scholar has reached the United States Senate 
J. W. FULBMGHT (Arkansas and Pembroke, 1925)* who, as every- 
body knows, has made a unique mark there. Three American 
Rhodes Scholars have been elected Members of the House of 
Representatives C. R. CLASON (Maine and Christ Church, 1914), 
R. HALE (Maine and Trinity, 1910) and C. B. ALBERT (Oklahoma 
and St. Peter's Hall, 1931), the last two being still members at this 
time of writing. Two Rhodes Scholars have been members of 
the British House of Commons Lord THOMSON (South African 
College School and Corpus Christi, 1911), Lord Advocate 1945-47, 
and J. F. F. PLATTS-MIIXS (New Zealand andBalliol, 1928), M.P. 
for Finsbury Borough, 1945-5 1- 

Two Canadian Rhodes Scholars have been Premiers of their 
Provinces]. B. McNAiR, Q.C. (New Brunswick and University, 
1911), Prime Minister of New Brunswick, 1940-52, and T. A. 
CAMPBELL (Prince Edward Island and Corpus Christi, 1917)? Premier 
of Prince Edward Island, 1936-43, until his appointment as Chief 
Justice. The late NORMAN ROGERS (Nova Scotia and University, 
1918), after being Minister of Labour for four years in the 
Canadian Government, was Minister of Defence from 1939 until 
his untimely death in an aircraft accident in June 1940. He was 
generally considered to have had a most promising political 

future. 3 

Besides these, I select, in order of their seniority, some names 
of those who have been active in politics in maay different 

H. A. WINTER (Newfoundland and University, 1907), formerly 
Speaker, Acting Prime Minister, Attorney-General and 

* Add (1955): N. W. MANI^T, Q.C. (Jamaica nJJ"**, M\ Prei f ^ ^J"?^] 
D. MINTOFF (Malta and Hertford, 1939), Premier of Malta; H. D, HICKS (Nova Scotia and 
Reefer, 1937), Premier of Nova Scotia, formerly Minister of Education. 


Commissioner for Home Affairs in Newfoundland, now a 
Judge of the Supreme Court of Newfoundland. 

The lateR. J. RUB ALL (South Australia and Christ Church, 1908), 
Attorney-General and Minister of Education, South Aus- 

The late T. A. L. DAVY, K.C. (Western Australia and Exeter, 
1909), Attorney-General in Cabinet, Western Australia. 

W. S. KENT HUGHES, M.V.O., O.B.E., M.C. (Victoria and 
Christ Church, 1915), Minister of State for the Interior and 
Minister of Works and Housing in the Federal Government, 

D. R. MICHENER, Q.C. (Alberta and Hertford, 1919), M.P., 
House of Commons, Canada. 

V. H. TREATT (New South Wales and New College, 1920), 

formerly Minister of Justice; Leader of the Opposition, New 

South Wales. 
N. N. NETHERSOLE (Jamaica and Lincoln, 1923)^ Minister of 

Finance, Jamaica. 
J. SINCLAIR (British Columbia and St. Johns, 1928), Minister of 

Fisheries, Ottawa. 
J. M. GREENHELD (Rhodesia and University, 1929), Minister of 

Justice, Southern Rhodesia. 1 

E. B. JOLLEFFE, Q.C. (Ontario and Christ Church, 1931) > Leader 
of the Opposition, Ontario. 

E. S. BUSUTTIL (Malta and Christ Church, 1942), Speaker of the 
Malta Parliament. 


Under this heading come 16 Rhodes Scholars (i deceased, 
2 retired). Among them may be mentioned specially K. Sis AM, 
F.B.A. (New Zealand and Merton, 1910), well known as an Early 
English scholar, who was Secretary to the Delegates of the Oxford 
University Press from 1942 until his retirement in 1948- 

1 (1955) : Now Minister of Home Affairs and Education, Federal Government of 
Rhodesia and Nyasaland. 



Mr. Rhodes said in the codicil to his last Will that 'education 
makes the strongest ties'. In addition to those who have been 
engaged in higher education, 128 have been school teachers (15 
deceased, 6 retired), and it is an interesting circumstance that out 
of this number 44 (3 deceased) have been Headmasters or Prin- 
cipals of their schools. They have been distributed as follows: 
Australia, 14; South Africa, 8; United States, 8; Canada, 6; 
Bermuda, 2; Jamaica, 2; Southern Rhodesia, i ; Kenya, I ; Egypt, 
i; Germany, i. 

29. SCIENCE (other than Chemistry) 

This class comprises 66 Rhodes Scholars (5 deceased, i retired), 
of whom the majority are physicists, not holding academic posts, 
but pursuing research in various scientific units, such as the 
Council of Scientific and Industrial Research in Australia or the 
National Research Council in Canada, besides other national 
research organizations for peace or war. Others are engaged in 

The most honoured name in this group is that of the late 
EDWIN P. HUBBLE (Illinois and Queens, 1910, see p. 227 above), 
the astronomer of Mount Wilson and Palomar, whose reputation 
was world-wide as an explorer of the uttermost heavens. As an 
expert in soil conservation W. C, LOWDERMILK (Arizona and 
Wadham, 1911) is of international repute. Sir DAVID RIVETT, 
F.R.S. (Victoria and Lincoln, 1907), besides winning many scien- 
tific distinctions, for many years directed the policy of the 
Commonwealth Council for Scientific and Industrial Research. 


This is, I confess, a kind of omnium gatherum but will serve to 
classify the 39 Rhodes Scholars who have been actively engaged 
in these forms of literary and creative work. Not many, so far 
as I know, have made literature their sole vocation; among these 
few is CHRISTOPHER MORLEY (Maryland and New College, 1910), 


the well-known novelist, satirist and dramatist, who is the eldest 
of three RJaodes Scholar brothers. Seven have devoted them- 
selves primarily to radio and 3 to films. Of the 7 who have been 
principally concerned with radio comment and organization, 
perhaps the best known are ELMER DAVIS (Indiana and Queens, 
1910), also a prolific journalist and writer of fiction and other 
works, and formerly Director, Office of War Information, in 
which his distinguished service earned the Medal for Merit; 
HOWARD K. SMITH (Louisiana and Merton, I93?) who is European 
Director of the Columbia Broadcasting System, and whose book, 
Last Train from Berlin, published in 1942, enjoyed a wide success; 
and CHARLES COLLINGWOOD (Maryland and New College, 1939) , 
well-known News Analyst of the Columbia Broadcasting 
System. W. E. GLADSTONE MURRAY (Quebec and New College, 
1913) was from 1936 to 1942 the First General Manager of the 
Canadian Broadcasting Corporation and for a time was Director- 
General of Broadcasting for Canada. 

Of the small group who have engaged in writing or producing 
for films, probably the best known, until his untimely death in 
1940, was JOHN MONK SAUNDERS (Washington and Magdalen, 

Many other Rhodes Scholars, though employed in other 
vocations (chiefly academic), have made names for themselves as 
creative writers. Among poets of established reputations one 
may mention, without disrespect to others not so well known, 
JOHN CROWE RANSOM (Tennessee and Christ Church, 1910), 
Professor of English, Kenyon College, Ohio; the late R. P. 
TKISTRAM COFHN (Maine and Trinity, 1916), Professor of English, 
Bowdoin College, Make; ROBERT PENN WARREN (Kentucky and 
New College, 1928); and PAUL ENGLE (Iowa and Merton, 193 3), 
Professor of English, State University of Iowa. ROBERT PENN 
WARREN has also been an active and versatile writer of fiction, 
and the film of his well-known novel, All the King's Men, had 
notable success. Other fiction-writers to mention only a few 
include W. S. CAMPBELL (Oklahoma and Merton, 1908), Professor 
of English, University of Oklahoma, who, under the pen-name 


of 'Stanley Vestal', has written many novels of the West and 
South-West, and especially of American Indians; JAMES SAXON 
CHILDERS (Alabama and Worcester, 1921), Associate Editor, The 
Atlanta Journal, formerly Professor of Literature, Birmingham 
(Ala.) Southern College; J. H. MACLENNAN (Canada-at-Large and 
Oriel, 1928); JOHN J.ESPKY (California and Merton, 1935), Associate 
Professor of English, University of California at Los Angeles; 
and D. M. DAVIN (New Zealand and Balliol, 1936), Assistant 
Secretary, Clarendon Press, Oxford. The Rhodes Scholars who 
have been regular broadcasters on different subjects are too 
numerous to list in full, but among them are B. S. KHRSTEAD 
(New Brunswick and Exeter, 1928), Down Professor of Economics, 
McGill University, who is Political Commentator for the 
International Service of the C.B.C. BERGEN EVANS (Ohio and 
University, 1928) also a versatile author has had much success 
on television programmes. 

So much for what is usually called 'creative' writing; but no 
account is taken here of the lucubrations of Rhodes Scholars on 
learned or technical subjects. Their name is legion, and it is 
regrettable and the present writer takes his share of the blame- 
that no exact bibliography has been maintained of all these 
writings. The labour involved in this task was always somewhat 
daunting, nor would the result be entirely satisfectory, for there 
is reason to think that many publications have never been notified, 
A bibliography compiled in 1932 showed 453 volumes written 
by American Rhodes Scholars alone. The Register of Rhodes 
Scholars, published in 1950, shows, up to the year 1945, * vast 
number of volumes published by Rhodes Scholars and ranging 
in subjects from the monumental British Empire before the American 
Revolution* now in its eighth volume, of Professor L. H. GIPSON 
(Idaho and Lincoln, 1904) the most massive work produced by 
any Rhodes Scholar to detective thrillers and other light 
entertainments. As for papers, essays and contributions to learned 
journals varying, needless to say, in scope and importance 
they are as the sands of the sea, and it has always seemed 


impracticable, without disproportionate clerical labour, to keep 
count of them. 


For 58 Rhodes Scholars, of whom 5 are deceased, I can find 
nothing except this vague and unsatisfactory classification, since 
they have been occupied in work which lies outside the ordinary- 
professional vocations. Under what heading, for example, can 
one place the most original of all Rhodes Scholars, the late 
KINGSLEY FAIRBRIDGE (Rhodesia and Exeter, 1908), the founder of 
the Fairbridge Farm Schools? It is gratifying to note that two 
Rhodes Scholars were formerly occupied, for considerable 
periods, in carrying on this work, viz. Fairbridge's own friend, 
Professor H. T. LOGAN (British Columbia and St. Johns, 1908), 
Emeritus Professor of Classics, University of British Columbia, 
and W. J. GARNETT (Ontario and New College, 1933) , now Prin- 
cipal of the Norfolk Farm Institute, England; while F. K. S. 
WOODS (Orange Free State and Brasenose, 1929) has been since 
1938 Principal of the Fairbridge Farm School at Molong, N.S.W. 
It would be wearisome to describe all these varied occupations, 
but some names call for special mention. WHITNEY H. SHEPARD- 
SON (New York and Balliol, 1910) was until recently head of a 
section of the Carnegie Corporation and is now President of the 
National Committee for a Free Europe. E. S. GRIFFITH (New 
York and Merton, 1917), besides being a writer of authority on 
questions of government, is Director of the Legislative Reference 
Service, Library of Congress. H. A. MOE (United States-at-Large 
and Brasenose, 1919), formerly a Fellow of Brasenose College, is 
Secretary-General and a Trustee of the Guggenheim Memorial 
Foundation. The late W. H. DRANE LESTER (Mississippi and St. 
John's, 1922) is the only Rhodes Scholar to have been an officer 
of the famous RB J. For some ten years O. C. CARMICHAEL 
(Alabama and Wadham, 1913), formerly Chancellor of Vanderbilt 
University and now of the University of Alabama, was President 
of the great Carnegie Foundation. At the head of the Rocke- 


feller Foundation is DEAN RUSK (North Carolina and St. Johns, 
1931), President at the early age of forty-three, and formerly 
Deputy Under-Secretary of State, U.S. Department of State; 
colleagues with him in this great organization are two other 
Rhodes Scholars, E. F. D'ARMS (Wisconsin and Oriel, 1925), 
Associate Director of the Division of Humanities, and 
CHADBOURNE GUPATRIC (New York and Balliol, 1938), 
Assistant Director in the same Division. Lt.-CoL J. G. J. 
KRIGE (Stellenbosch and Wadham, 1930) is Inspector of Flying, 
Civil Aviation Council, Department of Transport, Union of 
South Africa, while, by way of contrast, A. HL JARVIS (Ontario 
and University, 1938) is head of Oxford House in the East End of 
London, 1 and D. VON BOTHMER (Germany and Wadham, 1938), 
who fought with the United States Forces and won the Bronze 
Star Medal and the Purple Heart, is Assistant Curator of Greek 
and Roman Art in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 
where another Rhodes Scholar of an earlier period, A. H. MAYOR 
(New Jersey and Christ Church, 1923), is Curator of Prints. There 
are several psychologists, workers in various religious and 
charitable organizations and in the field of labour relations, some 
in Chambers of Commerce and similar institutions, several 
archivists, a few land agents, a Christian Science practitioner, a 
Town Clerk. I find only one representative of the plastic arts 
O. F. DAVISSON (Connecticut and New College, 1920), who is a 


There are 107 Rltodes Scholars who cannot be classified. 
Fifty-four of these were killed in action and 21 died before they 
had been able to establish themselves in any vocation. Most of 
the remainder are scholars of recent years who are still training 
for professions but are not yet definitely settled. Some are 
doing national service. Concerning a few no information is 

1 (1955): Now Director of the Canadian National Gallery. 




(Note. As explained, p. 231 above, the total in this summary 
does not correspond with the total number of elections of Rhodes 

Academic Teaching . . .618 

Accountants and Actuaries . . -9 

Agriculture and Animal Husbandry . 6 

Anthropologists . 3 

Archaeologist i 
Architect ..... i 

Business and Banking . . , 239 

Chemists . . . . .46 

Clergy and Missionaries . . .62 

Colonial Service . . . 37 

Diplomatic and Consular . . .69 

Economists and Statisticians . . 20 

Engineers . . . . -79 

Farming and Ranching . . 36 

Forestry . . . . .19 

Geologists and Geophysicists . 15 

Government and International Service . 167 

Indian Civil Service . . -3 

Journalism . . . . -65 

Law . . . . .488 
Librarians ..... 6 

Medicine . . . . .171 
Mining ..... 7 
Music ..... 4 

Navy, Army and Air Force . . 40 

Politics . . . . .62 

Publishing . . . . .16 

Schools and Educational Services . . 128 

Science (other than Chemistry) . . 66 


Writing, Lecturing, Radio, Films . . 39 
Miscellaneous . . 5# 

Unclassified . . . .107 

(Records up to July 1953) 

'Success in and fondness for' (the actual preposition was, per 
incuriam, 'of ) 'manly sports* was one of the qualifications which 
Mr. Rhodes required of his Scholars. The importance attached 
to it has varied from time to time. In the early days of the 
Scholarships there was a tendency to over-emphasize athletic 
prowess, at the expense, in some instances, of academic profici- 
ency though the later careers of most of the early Rhodes 
Scholars show, clearly that the general intellectual standard was 
not impaired. The Trustees have always taken die view, which 
they believe was the Founder's, that the importance of athletics 
lies in a combined vitality of mind and body rather than in 
spectacular performance. Games of all kinds are an integral part 
of Oxford undergraduate life and, besides their physical value in 
the Thames Valley climate, they generally provide an easy 
introduction to friendships, common interests and the corporate 
spirit of Colleges. A very large number of Rhodes Scholars row 
or pky games for their Colleges without any hope of ever 
achieving a Blue, but with great advantage to themselves and 
others. The fair and moderate spirit in which Oxford games are 
played is also not without its educational value. 

These men, being not 'merely bookworms', fulfil what seems 
to have been the intention of die testator; but there have been 
many others who have won distinction in the great variety of 
sports which Oxford cultivates. Their successes have given some 
hasty observers the impression that Riodes Scholars are usually 
'more brawn than brain'. The criticism is not borne out by the 
facts. In my experience it has been rare to find a Rhodes Scholar 
who has supposed that his chief business at Oxford was to score 


athletic successes, to the neglect of his serious work. On the 
contrary, both as Warden of Rhodes House and previously as a 
College tutor, I often had occasion to admire the manner in which 
they combined the two interests, and in that respect they seemed 
to be an example to many English undergraduates who were much 
less successful in balancing their activities. The careers of Rhodes 
Scholars show that there is no necessary antinomy between the 
physical and the intellectual, for it is remarkable how many who 
have won high success in games at Oxford have had distinguished 
careers in later life. 

If one reckons Blues and Half-Blues together, which seems to 
be the most convenient course for present purposes, 1 646 alto- 
gether have been won by Rhodes Scholars up to July 1953. This 
figure refers to performances, not performers, since many Rhodes 
Scholars have won more than a single Blue or Half-Blue. These 
I may mention specially. 

Three Rhodes Scholars have achieved the remarkable feat of 
Quadruple Blues. They are the late R. O. LAGDEN (South Africa 
and Oriel, 1908, killed in action, 1915) (Cricket, Rugby Football, 
Hockey and Rackets) ; R. H. JACK (Pennsylvania and Pembroke, 
1923) (Athletic Sports, Relay Races, Lacrosse and Ice Hockey); 
and Dr. F. MUNROE BOURNE (Quebec and University, 1932) (Relay 
Races, Swimming, Water Polo and Ski). 

Twelve have won Triple Blues. I give their names in order of 
seniority: the late Lord ROBINSON (South Australia and Magdalen, 
1905) (Cricket, Athletic Sports, Lacrosse) ; the late W. J. PEAKSE 
(Quebec and New College, 1911, killed in action, 1917) (Cross- 
Country, Lawn Tennis, Lacrosse); W. S. KENT HUGHES (Victoria 
and Christ Church, 1915) (Athletic Sports, Relay Races, Lacrosse, 
besides representing Australia in the Olympic Games in 1920); 
T. LAWTON (Queensland and New College, 1921) (Rugby Football, 
Athletic Sports, Swimming); President W. E. STEVENSON (New 

1 Full Blues are definitely awarded for some sports, Half-Blues for others. There are 
a certain number, however, in which the award of Full or Half-Blue depends on particular 
circumstances e.g. whether the competitor has been first or second string, or has satisfied 
other conditions which vary with different games. In the following tabulation these 
sports are indicated as *Full or Half*. 


Jersey andEalliol, 1922) (Athletic Sports, Relay Races, Lacrosse); 
President F. L. HOVDE (North Dakota andBrasenose, 1929) (Rugby 
Football, Athletic Sports, Relay Races) ; Dr. H. G. O. OWEN 
SMITH (Diocesan College, Rondebosch, and Magdalen, 1930) (Cricket, 
Rugby Football, Boxing Captain of England, Rugby, 1937); 
the late Dr. J. E. LOVELOCK (New Zealand and Exeter, 1931) 
(Athletic Sports, Relay Races, Cross-Country Olympic Games 
and World Record for the Mile, 1933); L. R. MC!NTYRE (Tas- 
mania and Exeter, 1933) (Athletic Sports, Relay Races, Cross- 
Country (Captain, 1935) );H. MERZ (Germany and Trinity, 1937) 
(Athletic Sports, Hockey, Ski); B. H. TRAVERS (New South 
Wales and New College, 1940) (Rugby Football (Captain, 1947), 
Cricket, Athletic Sports (Rugby International) ) ; and A. A. 
JORDAN (Idaho, West Point and Brasenose, 1947) (Athletic Sports, 
Lacrosse, Basketball). J. L. MERRILL (California and Christ Church, 
1924), besides winning a Blue for Boxing and a Half-Blue for 
Swimming, was in Trial VIII's in 1924 and 1926. 

Double Blues (or Blue and Half-Blue) have been won by 90 
Rhodes Scholars. Two others rowed against Cambridge during 
the emergency period when Blues were not awarded. The late 
Col. I. R. SCHIMMELPFENNIG (Nebraska, West Point and Lincoln, 
1930, killed in action, 1945), besides competing against Cam- 
bridge in Lacrosse, won the Heavyweight Boxing Championship 
of the Universities of Great Britain in 1932. (He was unfortu- 
nately prevented by illness from representing Oxford against 

The comparison between pre-war and post-war athletic suc- 
cesses is mentioned above (p. 180). 

In addition to the comparatively small number (7) who have 
rowed against Cambridge, 13 have been in Trial VIII's. 

Six Rhodes Scholars have competed against Cambridge in 
Chess, which, if not an outdoor sport, is certainly one of mental 

The distribution of Blues and Half-Blues has been as follows: 


ATHLETIC SPORTS (Full or Half) . . 93 


Six of these have been Presidents of the O.U.A.C., viz. the 
late L. C. HULL (Michigan and Brasenose, 1907) ; the late BEVIL 
RUDD (SL Andrew's College, Grahamstown, and Trinity, 1913); 
Sir ARTHUR POJOOTT (New Zealand and Magdalen, 1923) ; the late 
}. E. LOVELOCK (New Zealand and Exeter, 1931); K A. S. GENTRY 
(Virginia and Christ Church, 1933); and P. K D. WALLIS (St. 
Andrew s College, Grahamstown, and Trinity, I946). 1 There have 
been 8 Olympic performers, viz. BEVIL RUPD, W. S. KENT 
HUGHES (Victoria and Christ Church, 1915), President W. E. 
STEVENSON (New Jersey and Balliol, 1922), D. MOFFAT JOHNSON 
(Quebec and Balliol, 1923), Sir ARTHUR PORRITT, W. G. 
KAXATJGHER (New Zealand and Balliol, 1927), J. E. LOVELOCK and 
E. L. PHILIP (India and Christ Church, 1948); while R. E. M. 
BLAKEWAY (Eastern Province and Wadham, 1935) represented 
Great Britain against Finland in 1937 and established a record for 
the Javelin. Others who have established records in different 
events are G. M. SPROULE (Victoria and Balliol, 1911) (3 miles, 
1913), J. E. LOVELOCK (World Record for Mile, Olympic 
Games, 1933) and A. J. BURGER (Orange Free State and Hertford, 
I 949) (Pole Vault, 1952). 

BADMINTON (Half) , . . 5 

A, C. FINDLAY (Nova Scotia and Brasenose, 1936) was Captain 
in 1938, 

BASKETBALL (Half) . . . .24 

This game, played almost entirely by Rhodes Scholars from 
U.S.A. and Canada, has increased in popularity of recent years 
and was classified for a Half-Blue after the second war. Four 
Riodes Scholars have been Captains of the Oxford team. 

BOXING (Full) . . . .23 

In this sport the name of E. P. F. EAGAN (Colorado and New 
College, 1922), who boxed as heavyweight for U.S.A. in the 
Olympic Games in 1924, is pre-eminent. Few amateur boxers 

1 Add (1955): G. H. JEFFRIES (New Zealand and Magdalen, 1952). 


have had a higher reputation. The performance of the late Col. 
SCHIMMELPFENNIG has already been mentioned. 

CRICKET (Full) . . . .20 

Five of these have been Captains of the Oxford team, viz. 
B. W. HONE (South Australia and New College, 1930) (also Lawn 
Tennis Blue); R. E. LUYT (Diocesan College, Rondebosch, and 
Trinity, 1936) (also Rugby Blue); C. B. VAN RYNEVELD (Dio- 
cesan College, Rondebosch, and University, 1947) (also International 
Cricket for South Africa and Rugby Blue and International); 
M. B. HOFMEYR (Cape Province and Worcester, 1948) (also Rugby 
Blue and International) ; and A. L. DOWDING (South Australia and 
Balliol, 1950). J. A. DUNNING (New Zealand and New College, 
1925), though he did not obtain a Blue at Oxford, represented 
New Zealand in Test Matches in 1933 and 1937, and J. P. DUMINY 
(South African College School and University, 1919) played for 
South Africa on several occasions. 

L. R. MclNTYRE (Tasmania and Exeter, 1933) was Captain of 
the Oxford team in 1935, besides being First Reserve for the 
English team in 1939. 

FENCING (Half) .... 5 
R. H. SNOW (Illinois and Merton, 1922) was Captain in 1925. 

GOLF (Full or Half) .... 7 
R. H. BAUGH (Alabama and Wadham, 1927) was Captain in 

GYMNASTICS (Half) .... I 

HOCKEY (Full) .... 5 

The late W. M. JONES (New Zealand and Balliol, 1914) played 
for Wales in 1924 and G. MACDONALD (Orange Free State and 
Balliol, 1919) played for Scotland in 1923. 


ICE HOCKEY (Half) . . - -87 

Eleven have been Captains of the Oxford team, and the 
following have been International players: C. S. CAMPBELL, Q.C. 
(Alberta and Lincoln, 1926), who was Captain of the English 
team in 1929 and is now President of the National Hockey 
League of Canada; L. C. BONNYCASTLE (Manitoba and Wadham, 
1929); O. A. GRATIAS (Saskatchewan and Brasenose, 1930); C. H. 
LITTLE (Ontario and Brasenose, 1930); E. RUSSELL HOPKINS 
(Saskatchewan and Queens, 1932); J. E. NADEAU (New Brunswick 
and Brasenose, 1932). 

JU-JITSU (JUDO) (Half) . . .5 

LACROSSE (Half) . . .134 

Nine have been Captains of the Oxford team, and one, A. E. 
GRAUER (British Columbia and University, 1927), played for Canada 
in the Olympic Games in 1928. 

LAWN TENNIS (Full or Half) . . .4* 

The Oxford team has been captained by the following 10 
Rhodes Scholars: the late Dr. W. R. REYNELL (South Australia 
andBalliol, 1906); A. B. GRAVEM (California and Oriel 1918); Sir 
ALAN WATT (New South Wales and Oriel, 1921); J. P. CARLETON 
(New Hampshire and Magdalen, 1922); D. J. R. SUMNER (South 
Australia and Magdalen, 1923); C. L. BURWELL (Tennessee and 
Merton 9 1932); L. E. KING (New South Wales and New College, 
1936); F. R. MOTT-TRILLE (Jamaica and St. John's, 1948); J. R. 
FROLIK (California and Merton, 1948); P. M. M. DE WET (Natal 
and Trinity, 1949)- 

In addition, one Rhodes Scholar, B. L. S. FRANKLIN (Orange 
Free State and Brasenose, 1938), played for Oxford against Cam- 
bridge during the emergency period when only unofficial 'War 
Blues' were awarded. 

ROYAL TENNIS (Full or Half) . i 

Only one Rhodes Scholar, J. R. FROLIK (see above), has 
represented Oxford against Cambridge in this ancient game. 


POLO (Half) .... 2 

RACKETS (Full or Half) i 

RELAY RACES (Half) . . . .42 

G. N. LAIDLAW (New Brunswick and University, 1934) competed 
in the International Relays in Paris in 1935. 

RIFLE (Half) .... 7 

ROWING (Full) .... 7 
The following compose this small and select group: Dr. and 
Col. C. W. B. LITTLEJOHN (Victoria and New College, 1909); 
Professor (Bacteriology) and Lt.-Col. H. K. WARD, M.C. with 
two Bars (New South Wales and New College, 1911); the late 
N. H. MACNEIL, M.C. (Victoria and Balliol, 1914); the late 
Professor Sir HUGH CAIRNS (South Australia and Balliol, 1917); 
J. A. INGLES (Tasmania and Magdalen, 1927) ; Dr. W. W. WOOD- 
WARD (New South Wales and Brasenose, 1946), also an Olympic 
representative of Australia; K. H. KENISTON (Michigan and Balliol, 

It will be observed that, with one exception, all these Blues 
have come from Australia, and that rowing seems to have some 
special affinity with distinction in Medicine. 

A 'War Blue' was obtained by H. D. HICKS (Nova Scotia and 
Exeter, 193 ?) 

RUGBY HVES (Half) .... I 

The sole Rhodes Scholar exponent of this game to represent 
Oxford is G. L. BROWN (South Dakota and Brasenose, 1938). 

RUGBY FOOTBALL (Full) . . -65 

More Rhodes Scholars have achieved special distinction in this 
game, which certainly fulfils the Pounder's description of 'manly', 
than in any other. There has been a long succession of Inter- 
national Caps, of whom the first was the late R. H. WILLIAMSON 
(St. Andrew's College, Grahamstown, and Trinity, 1906). He has 
been followed by die late G. V. PORTUS (New South Wales and 


New; College, 1907), who, however, did not obtain his Blue at 

Oxford; C. M. GILRAY, M.C. (New Zealand and University, 1907) ; 

S. N. CRONJE (St. Andrew's College, Grahamstown, and Trinity, 

1907) ; the late R. H. M. HANDS (Diocesan College, Rondelosch, 

and University, 1907, died of wounds, 1918); the late R. O. 

LAGDEN (South Africa and Oriel, 1908, see p. 258 above); the late 

L. G. BROWN, RR.C.S. (Queensland and Balliol, 1909); the late 

S. S. L. STEYN (Diocesan College, Rondebosch, and University, 1909, 

killed in action, 1917); Mr. Justice V. H. NESER (Transvaal and 

Brasenose, 1918); T. LAWTON (Queensland and New College, 1921); 

A. C. WALLACE (New South Wales and New College, 1922); the 

late G. G. AITKEN (New Zealand and St. John's, 1922) ; Dr. H. G. 

OWEN SMITH (Diocesan College, Rondebosch, and Magdalen, 1930); 

Professor M. M. COOPER (New Zealand and University, 1934); the 

late H. D. FREAKES (Natal and Magdalen, 1936, killed on active 

service, 1942) ; M. J. DAVIES (Diocesan College, Rondebosch, and 

Trinity, 1938), though not a Blue; B. H. TRAVERS (New South 

Wales and New College, 1940); S. C. NEWMAN (Transvaal and 

Exeter, 1940); J. O. NEWTON THOMPSON (Cape Province and 

Trinity, 1940) ; G. L. CAWKWELL (New Zealand and Christ Church, 

1946) ; C. B. VAN RYNEVELD (Diocesan College, Rondebosch, and 

University, 1947) ; M. B. HOFMEYR (Cape Province and Worcester, 

1948); H. D. SMALL (Transvaal and St. Johns, 1949). 

Two Rhodes Scholars have been Captains of England as well 
as of Oxford, both medical men the late L. G. BROWN, F.R.C.S., 
and Dr. H. G. OWEN SMITH. Besides these, the following have 
captained Oxford: W. W. HOSKIN (St. Andrew's College, 
Grahamstown, and Trinity, 1904); T. W. GUBB (St. Andrew 9 s 
College, Grahamstown, and University, 1927); the late S. J. HOF- 
MEYR (Cape Province and University, 1928) ; N. K. LAMPORT (New 
South Wales and Balliol, 1930); M. M. COOPER (see above); 
H. D. FREAKES (see above). 

Rugby Football is a different game from American Football, 
but three United States Rhodes Scholars have won Blues at 
Oxford, viz. D. G. HERRING (New Jersey and Merton, 1907); 
A. C. VAI^NTESOB (Pennsylvania and Balliol, 1922), who also re- 


presented the United States in the Olympic Games in 1924; and 
F. L. HOVDE (North Dakota and Brasenose, 1929). The two latter 
have been Presidents of Universities in the United States. 1 

SKI (Half) ..... 9 
Two Quebec Scholars have captained the Oxford team 
P. H. C. LANGLAIS (Quebec and Wadham, 1946) and GUY Corf 
(Quebec and St. Johns, 1947). 

SQUASH RACKETS (Full) . . .3 

R. F. PENNINGTON (Natal and Trinity, 1946) was Captain 

SWIMMING (Half) . . . .34 

Dr. F. MUNROE BOURNE (Quebec and University, 1932) re- 
presented Canada in its Olympic Swimming Team in 1928, 
1932 and 1936, and was its Captain in 1936. 

WATER POLO (Half) . . . .II 

Association Football , . .5 

Athletic Sports . . . -93 

Badminton ..... 5 
Basketball . . . . .24 

Boxing . . . . .23 

Cricket . . . . .20 

Cross-Country Running . . .8 

Fencing . . . . .5 

Golf ..... 7 

Gymnastics i 

Hockey . . . . .5 

Ice Hockey . . . .87 

Ju-Jitsu (Judo) .... 5 
Lacrosse ..... 134 
Lawn Tennis . . . .41 

1 Add (1955): V. W. JONES (California and Brasenose, 1953). 


Royal Tennis i 

Polo . . . 2 

Rackets ..... I 

Relay Races . . . .42 

Rifle ..... 7 

Rowing ..... 7 

Rugby Fives . i 

Rugby Football . . . -65 

Ski . . . . . .9 

Squash Rackets . 3 

Swimming . . . . -34 

Water Polo . . . .11 


Postscript, add 30, 1953-54 30 


Postscript, April, 1955. 

The following additional Blues and Half-Blues were obtained 
during the academic year 1953-54: 

Rowing: Two (President and Secretary of the Boat Club). 

Cricket: One. 

Rugby Football: Three. 

Athletics: One. 

Hockey: One. 

Lawn Tennis: One. 

Golf: One. 

Boxing: One. 

Lacrosse: Two. 

Ice Hockey: Seven. 

Ski: One. 

Badminton: One. 

Basketball: Seven. 

Sailing: One. 

L. P. MACLACHLAN (Rhodesia and Exeter, 1951) represented 
Scotland at Rugby Football in* four matches. * 





The Rt. Hon. L. S. Amery, C.H. 
Sir Edward Peacock, G.C.V.O. 

The Very Reverend John Lowe, D.D., Dean of Christ Church. 
The Rt. Hon. Lord Hailey, P.C., G.C.S.I., G.C.M.G., G.C.I.E. 
The Rt. Hon. Malcolm MacDonald, P.C. 
C. H. G. Millis, Esq., D.S.O., M.C., O.B.E. 
Professor K. C. Wheare, C.M.G., F.B.A. 
Sir George Abell, K.C.I.E. 

The Rt. Hon. Lord Elton. 

E. T. Williams, C.B., C.B.E., D.S.O. 

Australia: Professor G. W. Paton, Vice-Chancellor of Melbourne 


Bermuda: R. L. Barnard. 
Canada: D. R. Michener, Q.C., M.P. 
India: C. Eyre Walker. 

Jamaica: Assistant Secretary of the Education Authority. 
Malta: Dr. Jos. A. Manche, Vice-Chancellor of the Royal 

University of Malta. 
New Zealand: I. F. McKenzie, Registrar of the University of 

New Zealand. 



Pakistan: The Hon. Mr. Justice J. Ortcheson, C.B.E. 
Rhodesia: L. R. Morgan. 
South Africa: A. H. Gie. 

The United States: Courtney Smith, President of Swarthmore 

_._. mitmint tmmti m