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FEBRUARY 6, 1890, TO JANUARY 8, 1902 


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Architecture, cix 653 

Arnold Arboretum, vn 36 

Botanic Garden, xiv, xxv, xxxvn, lxxix ... 71, 103, 189, 551 
Bussey Institution, xxxiii, lx, lxxvii, lxxxviii, cm . . 181, 325, 545, 

579, 635 

Chapel, xxvi, lv, cviii 107, 305, 651 

Chemical Laboratory, I, lvii, lix, xciv 3, 311, 321, 603 

Composition and Rhetoric, xxviii, xlix, lxxi . . . . 117, 275, 401 

Divinity School, xn, xxi, liii 59, 93, 301 

English Literature, xxn, xliii, lxvii, lxxviii . . . 97, 211, 389, 547 

Fine Arts, xxvn, li, xcii Ill, 291, 595 

French, lxviii, xc 393, 585 

Geography and Geology, xlii, lxxxii, xci 207, 559, 587 

German, xxiv, xxxvi, xlvi, xovi 101, 187, 221, 609 

Government, xi, xxiii, xxxv, xli 55, 99, 185, 203 

Gray Herbarium, civ 637 

Greek, xxxi 173 

History, Ancient and Mediaeval, and Roman Law, xxix, lxxxvi 165, 573 

History, Modern, and International Law, iv, ci 23, 627 

Indo-Iranian Languages, vi, xix, lxxxv 29, 85, 571 

Italian, lxvi, lxxxi 385, 557 

Jefferson Physical Laboratory and Physics, m, xv, xxxiv, xlv, liv, 

lviii, lxx, lxxiv, lxxx, lxxxix, c . .22, 73, 183, 217, 303, 319, 

399, 523, 553, 581, 623 
Lawrence Scientific School, ix, xxxviii, lxxii, xcv . 40, 191, 519, 607 

Law School, lxxv 525 

Mathematics, xlvii .269 

Medical and Dental Schools, xxx, xlviii, lxxvi, lxxxvii . 167, 271, 

533, 577 

Mining and Metallurgy, cvi • 643 

Museum of Comparative Zoology, xxxii, L, LXIV, cv 177, 289, 381, 639 


Music, viii, xvi 38, 75 

Observatory, xliv, lxxxiii 215, 561 

Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology, v, lxix, cvii . . 27, 

397, 649 

Philosophy, lxi 329 

Physical Training, Athletic Sports, and Sanitary Condition of all 

Buildings, x, lxiii, lxxiii, xcviii 43, 337, 521, 619 

Political Economy, lii, xcix • 299, 621 

Reports and Resolutions, en 631 

Semitic Languages, xiii, xx, xxxix 63, 89, 193 

Spanish, xvm 83 

Veterinary School, n, xvn, lvi, lxii, xciii . . 21, 77, 307, 333, 599 
Zoology, xl, lxv, lxxxiv, xcvn 195, 383, 569, 617 





In Board of Overseers, 

December 17, 1890. 
Voted, That the Secretary be instructed to cause the reports of the 
several Visiting Committees read under Section 29 of the existing 
By-Laws to be numbered and printed consecutively after they shall 
have been acted on by this Board. 
A true copy of record. 




To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : — 

Gentlemen : By the invitation of Professor J. P. Cooke, Erving 
Professor of Chemistry ami Mineralogy and Director of the Chemical 
Laboratory, the Committee appointed by you to visit the Chemical 
Laboratoiy met in Boylston Hall in Cambridge on the afternoon of 
January twenty third of the present year. 

On that occasion Professor Cooke presented to your Committee the 
report which is herewith submitted. This will be found to be a most 
careful and interesting history of Professor Cooke's department from 
the insignificant beginning, which he describes, to its present active 
and efficient condition which has given the College its prominence in 
the teaching of chemical science. 

. It will be observed from the report of Professor Cooke that the 
new method of teaching of elementary chemistry — in which the 
students perform experiments in the Laboratory — has in two in- 
stances led to accidents which might well have been serious, and 
which in one case was followed by legal proceedings in which it was 
sought to hold the College liable for injuries to a student. But when 
it is remembered that only two cases of dangerous accidents have 
occurred, while thousands of experiments have been successfully and 
safely performed, it seems hardly necessary to limit this course to 
such work as is absolutely safe, which would, as Professor Cooke 
says, emasculate that system of instruction. Inasmuch, however, 
as both the accidents referred to occurred to students who were 
" making up work" out of course, and not therefore under the imme- 
diate supervision of the Instructor, your Committee suggest that a 
rule might well be introduced that would prevent any work in the 
experimental course from being done without such supervision as 
will secure safety. 

Your Committee made a careful examination of Boylston Hall, 
having in view the changes which the removal of the Mineralogical 
Cabinet will make possible, and congratulate the instructors and 
students upon the relief from the overcrowding from which they have 
so long suffered and which has so seriously interfered with the satis- 
factory prosecution of their work. 

In conclusion, your Committee desire to congratulate the Director, 
his Associate, and the College upon the publications of the Labora- 
tory, which, permit it to be said, that ''no single university among 
English-speaking people can show as good a record." 

For the Committee : 


February 6, 1890. 


Since 1876 the results of investigations in this Laboratory have 
usually been published under the general title of kt Contributions from 
the Chemical Laboratory of Harvard College " ; and under this name 
our Laboratory is known wherever the science of chemistry is culti- 
vated. The Chemical Laboratory was recognized as a distinct depart- 
ment of the University by the appointment of a Director by the 
Corporation, July 28, 1879 ; and it has also been so represented in 
the University Catalogue since the issue of 1882-83. This year for 
the first time a separate committee has been appointed b}' the Board 
of Overseers to visit the Chemical Laboratory ; and the Director takes 
the occasion to put on record a brief history of the rise and progress 
of the department under his charge. 

The writer was graduated with the Class of 1848 ; and, after pass- 
ing a year in Europe, returned to the College as Tutor of Mathematics 
in the autumn of 1849. Before that time there had not been, for many 
years, any s} T stematic instruction in chemistry given to the under- 
graduates ; and with the increasing prominence of the stucty at other 
colleges, the lack at Harvard was strongly felt. Thus it came to pass 
that within a few weeks after he had entered on his duties as Tutor 
of Mathematics, the writer was invited (November 28, 1849) to give, 
in addition to his other work, instruction to the Freshman class in 
the elements of chemistry; and on May 25, 1850, was appointed 
Instructor in Chemistry and Mineralogy. His first course of lectures 
was given during the second term of 1849-50 to the Class of 1853 ; 
and the second course, nominally on mineralogy but essentially also 
on chemistry, during the first term of 1850-51 to the Senior class of 
that year. At the close of this term on December £0, 1850, he was 
appointed Erving Professor, and was granted leave of absence for 
the remainder of the year, which he spent in Europe visiting labora- 
tories and collecting apparatus for instruction. 

By the vote of the Corporation appointing the Instructor in Chem- 
istry and Mineralogy, his pay was fixed at one thousand dollars, with 

thi^proviso : " He providing at his own charge the consumable ma- 
terials necessaiy in performing chemical experiments " ; and as the 
College possessed no chemical apparatus worth mentioning, the first 
two courses of lectures were illustrated almost wholly with the material 
which the writer brought from a small private laboratory which had 
been fitted up for him when a boy at his father's house in Boston ; 
and it is from such insignificant beginnings that the present establish- 
ment has grown. 

At the opening of the new College year, 1851-52, the young and 
inexperienced Professor returned from Europe with a very respectable 
outfit for that time, purchased, however, almost wholly at his own 
expense, in virtue of the general agreement among the members of 
what was then called the Boylston Medical School, that each Profes- 
sor should provide at his own expense all the apparatus and materials 
required in his course of instruction ; and at the beginning the most 
onerous — although, unfortunately, the most unsatisfactory — of the 
duties of the new Professor were those connected with the Medical 
School. At that time the instruction in this School was given almost 
wholfy by lectures, which were so crowded into four months of the 
3^ear that the same student constantly attended four lectures in as 
many consecutive hours ; and since no adequate means were provided 
to enforce the study of all the courses nominally required for the 
medical degree, the result was that a subject like chemistry, not 
directly bearing on medical practice, was systematically neglected, 
and no amount of enthusiasm or striving on the part of the teacher 
could secure attention from men whose faculties were already over- 

As the Professor himself had learned the little chemistry he knew 
b} T experimenting in his laboratory when a boy, he at once attempted 
to introduce teaching by experiment into the Medical School, and 
practical courses were soon established both in qualitative analysis 
and in medical chemistry. But as such courses could not be adapted 
to the existing system of the School, they were only tolerated as 
extras ; yet a considerable number of students availed themselves of 
the privilege, and the only satisfactory work done by the writer in the 
School was in connection with these courses. 

In organizing the chemical instruction in the College, quite as great 
difficulties were encountered at first as in the Medical School. Here 
also there was a hard and fast system to which it was necessary to 
conform. The instruction at that time in the undergraduate depart- 
ment was given almost wholly by recitations from more or less ele- 
mentary text-books ; and besides one experimental lecture, the Erving 
Professor was expected to hold two recitations each week, the class 

being divided for the purpose into as many divisions as the numbers 

The chemical text-books of that date were simply epitomes crowded 
with facts wholly unrelated to the previous knowledge of the students. 
Recitations from such books were necessarily dreary enough ; and the 
students who bore the infliction little suspected how their teacher 
groaned under his task. But this was only the beginning of a long 
struggle to establish the teaching of experimental science in spite of 
regulations made wholly in the interest of literary studies. In this 
struggle a great deal of time and energy was spent ; but not wholly 
in vain, since the way was thus prepared for better things, although 
the pioneer cannot but regret that he himself had so long to battle in 
the wilderness. 

In those early years every attempt was made to make the required 
recitations profitable. A text-book (Stockhardt's Elements of Chem- 
istry) written on an experimental basis was found in Germany and 
translated by the late Miss C. Peirce expressly for this use. The 
subject was made as real as possible by frequent demonstrations, and 
some definiteness at least was gained b} T exercises on chemical reac- 
tions and problems. A small book bearing this name was almost 
the earliest publication of the writer, and it served its purpose in 
making the study respected in a literary community ; but it did this 
at the sacrifice of all that is distinctive and peculiarly valuable in 
the stucty of an experimental science. 

As at the Medical School so at the College an immediate attempt 
was made to establish an experimental course of instruction. The 
lecture-room at the north end of University Hall was assigned to the 
department, together with a room on the opposite side of the entry, 
in which, at the time, was stored the so-called Riimford apparatus ; 
and this was put temporarily under the charge of the Erving Profes- 
sor, and served a useful purpose in his lectures. The apparatus and 
chemicals procured as above stated, primarily for use at the Medical 
School, were made to do double duty ; and the frequent transportation 
of this material between the School and College was a marked feature 
of the situation. The Rumford apparatus-room served as a private 
laboratory ; but in order to find a working-room for an experimental 
class the cellar under the lecture-room was floored and fitted up with 
tables. In this rude laboratory chemistry was first taught experi- 
mentally to undergraduate students in this country, — at least so far 
as the writer knows. The only branches taught were qualitative and 
quantitative analysis, chiefly the former. Indeed, these were the 
only branches of which the methods had been worked up into a suit- 
able form for elementary teaching at that time. This practical 

course, however, was not recognized by the College Faculty until 
1858, after it had been in successful operation for seven years; but 
a large number of students availed themselves of the opportunities 
thus offered, although the study was wholly voluntary and received 
no credit whatever in the College course ; and not a few of the gradu- 
ates of that day will remember that old cellar laboratory, where good 
work was done and good men educated. 

Early in the year 1856 a movement to obtain suitable accommo- 
dations for experimental work took definite shape, and plans were 
drawn by Mr. W. R. Ware for building a small brick laborato^ at a 
cost of about ten thousand dollars ; and on July 26 of that year the 
plans were submitted to the Corporation who gave to the writer an 
informal consent to solicit subscriptions in behalf of this modest enter- 
prise. He early sought the aid and counsel of the late John E. 
Thayer, to whose attention the project was warmly recommended by 
President Walker. Mr. Thayer at once entered into the plan with 
his usual public-spirited zeal, and promised to give one tenth of the 
amount required. But at the same time he called attention to the 
fact that the Corporation then held a fund bequeathed b} r the late 
Ward Nicholas Boylston for the erection of an anatomical museum 
and a chemical laboratory, and suggested that it would be better for 
the College to increase b}' subscription the Boylston fund to forty 
thousand dollars and erect at once the handsome stone building which 
Mr. Boylston contemplated and which would be an ornament to the 
College Yard. The wisdom of Mr. Thayer's suggestion was obvious ; 
and in this changed form the subject was again brought before the 
Corporation at their meeting of August 30 following, and after all 
the details had been examined by a committee it was decided in favor 
of Mr. Thayer's suggestion. The subscription was at once opened 
and seventeen thousand dollars were finally collected, though not 
without difficulty even with Mr. Thayer's efficient aid. For a finan- 
cial crisis came on soon after, and the civil war rapidly following, the 
project must have been indefinitely postponed had it been delaj^ecl 
even for six months. Mr. Tha} T er himself contributed three thousand 
dollars, and to his influence the final success was greatly owing. 

The contracts were finally signed on January 27, 1857, and the 
building occupied early in March of the following year. The total 
cost, including the furnishing, was fifty thousand dollars, obtained 
as follows : — 

Boylston Fund $24,000 

Subscriptions 17,000 

General Fund of the College 9,000 



It was a sad circumstance, however, connected with the opening of 
the new building that neither Mr. Thayer nor Mrs. Wigglesworth, the 
two persons who showed the most interest in the undertaking, lived 
to see its completion. 

The greatly increased duties which the growth of the undergraduate 
department involved, besides circumstances which it is not important 
to recall, led the Erving Professor, as soon as the subscription was 
secured, to ask to be relieved from all the duties at the Medical School ; 
and this relief having been freely granted by the Corporation the 
material belonging to the Professor at the Medical School was for the 
last time transferred to Cambridge, and furnished the chief chemical 
outfit of the new laboratory. 

As first built, Boylston Hall was admirably adapted to the purposes 
for which it was intended. It was never anticipated that the whole 
building would become one large chemical laboratory, comprising 
every department of the science ; indeed a far larger and more com 
prehensive laboratory than any that existed even in Germany at that 
time. The laboratory of the Lawrence Scientific School then pro- 
vided for all graduate or advanced students ; and the one general 
laboratory room in the new building was designed solely for the under- 
graduates with the single object of making the elementary teaching of 
chemistry more effective by means of experimental work. The year 
Boylston Hall was opened there were less than four hundred under- 
graduates in attendance ; and a lecture-room with two hundred seats 
and a laboratory with forty-eight working places was thought an 
ample provision not onl}' for the present but for all future needs ; so 
little could the later rapid growth be then foreseen. 

From the time the new laboratory was opened qualitative analysis 
was allowed as an elective stud} T in the Junior } T ear ; but it was not 
until 1868-69 that a second elective (in determinative mineralogy) 
was secured. A revolution in the general methods of the College was 
then impending, and the year 1870-71 marked an important change. 
Up to this time, the whole instruction in chemistry, chemical physics, 
and mineralogy had been given by the Erving Professor with the aid 
of one assistant, wholly unpaid or paid only in part by the College. 
The old recitation and lecture system had continued unchanged ; and 
although quantitative analysis, organic chemistry and even electrical 
measurements had been taught at times to a few enthusiastic students 
who would give extra time to laboratory work ; yet the only experi- 
mental courses recognized by the Faculty were the two above-men- 
tioned and the last only within two years. 

But in 1870-71 a reorganization of the whole department in con- 
nection with the rest of the College took place under the influence of 


President Eliot. The essential courses of a chemical education were 
systematically laid out ; and all placed on an experimental basis. 
The teaching of molecular physics which had so long burdened the 
department was transferred to the department of physics. The stu- 
dents in chemistry of the Lawrence Scientific School were transferred 
to Boylston Hall. A third story was added to this hall which largely 
increased the laboratory accommodations. An additional assistant was 
provided ; and Mr. C. L. Jackson who had served several years as 
assistant was appointed Assistant Professor. In 1874 Mr. H. B. Hill, 
the second assistant referred to above, was appointed Assistant Pro- 
fessor ; and since then the number of courses given in the Laboratory 
has been steadily multiplied, and the number of teachers increased ; 
until the present year when the laboratory corps consists of three 
professors, one instructor and four assistants, teaching fifteen distinct 
courses to more than three hundred laboratory students. 

Such was the conservatism of the old college systsm that it was not 
until 1870-71 that descriptive chemistry was first taught experimen- 
tally in this College under the charge of Professor Jackson ; and the 
barren recitation system finally abandoned. This consummation had 
been as before stated the dream of the writer from the first ; but it 
required twenty years to reach the result. Moreover his own efforts 
in that direction would have been unavailing had it not been for the 
sympathy and support of President Eliot. Further it must not be 
forgotten that while we owe to President Eliot our escape from the 
toils of a system of teaching which in chemistry at least was as para- 
lyzing to the teacher as it was profitless to the student, we owe to him 
also in connection with Professor Storer the working out of the first 
practical system of experimental instruction in descriptive chemistry. 
The methods of teaching qualitative analysis had been worked out a 
generation earlier in the German laboratories ; and a partial method 
of teaching general chemistry experimentally had also been elaborated 
somewhat later in Saxony by Stockhardt in his book called "Die 
Schule der Chemie," which from the first the writer adopted as the 
text-book for the compulsory recitations which he was forced to hold. 
But to Eliot and Storer belong the credit of showing, at the Institute 
of Technology in Boston, for the first time — at least in this country 
— the practicability of teaching general chemistry by observation and 
experiment ; and we have every reason to hope that the influence they 
thus exerted will in time drive out from all our schools and colleges 
the senseless practice of committing to memorj' a mass of facts wholly 
unrelated to the pupil's intelligence. The writer can only regret that 
he was so long the unwilling agent of such educational folly, although 
he must claim for himself the small merit of having done his best to 


mitigate the evils of a system which he was powerless to change. But 
the battle against the prescribed methods of the old scholastic system 
has not yet been wholly won. When will literary scholars learn that 
there can be no universal system of education ? and that what may be 
intellectual food in one department of knowledge is often poison in 
another? Physical science has its peculiar methods and its peculiar 
discipline ; and its value as a means of education lies solely in these 
features. To prescribe for the study of natural science the forms 
adapted for literary studies is to lose the only real value of such 
stud\', or at least to use it for a discipline which can be far better 
gained by other means. Book learning is a good thing, in some 
departments the only thing ; but physical science can never be learned 
to any valuable purpose from books. Cramming for examinations is 
an excellent intellectual discipline, but this is not the discipline of 
physical science. The ideal educational s} T stem of the future will use 
each study for its own peculiar discipline ; and will vary its methods 
as the ends to be gained demand. Life is too short and vital energy 
too precious that we can afford to waste intellectual effort, and in 
the sharp competition of the future a continuance of the present 
waste will be fatal to success. 

Since the experimental method of teaching was adopted the course 
in general chemistry has been under the direction of Professor Jack- 
son, and its great success has been mainty owing to his intelligent 
oversight and well-considered methods. The present } T ear there are 
over one hundred students in the course ; and this one course is full 
work for the teacher in charge. It is the necessaiy preliminary, and 
therefore the feeder of all our more advanced courses ; and its import- 
ance in our system is correspondingly great. 

The new scheme of requisitions for College requires that there 
should be open to Freshmen elective courses corresponding to each of 
the so-called advanced studies of this scheme. Hence four years ago 
there was first introduced into the laboratory cumculum a more ele- 
mentary course in general chemistry than Chemistry 1 , referred to 
above ; and the new course is known as Chemistry B. One of the 
chief objects of this course was to influence the study of chemistiy in 
the secondary schools ; but it also meets a demand for a limited train- 
ing in the methods of experimental science by those undergraduates 
whose chief interest centres in other studies. Before the recent 
changes there had been for several years an optional requisition in 
chemistry, but it was almost invariably met hy the cramming of an 
elementary text-book, and the result was as unsatisfactory as might 
be expected. It has hitherto been impossible to secure that chem- 
istry should be taught in the secondary schools in accordance with the 


true methods and spirit of experimental science. All the school 
methods and traditions were scholastic, and the teachers themselves 
had little conception of the nature of the discipline which gives to the 
study of an experimental science its only leal value. Chemistry was 
learned from a book just as history or grammar was learned, and the 
knowledge tested by the same senseless repetitions as those which we 
regard as a mark of barbarism in a Mohammedan school, but with 
which we suffer our own children to be persecuted. Unfortunately 
the teaching of chemistry is especially open to this abuse, because the 
elementary textbooks on this subject are epitomes, crowded with 
facts in regard to the elementary substances and their compounds, 
which for the average pupil bear no relation whatever to the rest of 
his knowledge, and must be learned — if learned at all — as unintel- 
ligible forms of words. 

For a long time the writer had anxiously sought to find some means 
of remedying this crying evil, and of obtaining from the schools some 
training in the discipline of physical science comparable to that which 
has so long been secured in classical studies, a training which would 
prepare those coming to the University for more serious work in the 
same direction in their College course. 

It was obvious from the first that no effective work could be done 
in the schools unless the scope of the subject was greatly restricted. 
It was impossible that the scheme of the chemical elements should be 
treated at all, for the very brevity that a school course compels would 
render the only treatment of the subject, possible to be given, fruit- 
less. The writer therefore ventured on the bold plan of wholly 
breaking away from all the traditions of the subject, and limiting 
an elementary course on chemistry to the general principles of the 
science which could be fully illustrated by experiments and enforced 
without an undue array of facts. 

This was the motive of a pamphlet entitled " Descriptive List of 
Experiments on the Fundamental Principles of Chemistry for use in 
Chemistry B ; also for the use of teachers preparing students for the 
admission examination in chemistry " ; first printed by the University 
in 1886. 

Imperfect as work of this kind in an wholly untrodden field neces- 
sarily must be, this publication was the product of much thought and 
experience, and has already accomplished all that could reasonably 
have been expected. Last year more than fifty candidates passed the 
laboratory examination on this basis. The new course, moreover, 
has been introduced into several of the principal preparatory schools, 
including those of Andover and Exeter ; and teachers who have 
entered into the spirit of the method have been warm in its praise. 


With college men the result has been equally satisfactory, and our 
experience during the last three years will enable us to improve the 
details of the system when another edition of the pamphlet is required. 

In College the classes in general chemistry are a cause of no little 
anxiety on account of the risk incident to experimental work in the 
hands of heedless and inexperienced men. Students who have been 
trained solely in literary studies rarely possess those habits of preci- 
sion, foresight, and judgment which experimental work imperatively 
demands. Bad grammar or a blundering translation may indicate 
wretched scholarship, but rarely entails more serious consequences 
than a sarcastic reprimand. But a neglect of directions or careless- 
ness in mixing materials may in a chemical experiment maim a man 
for life. A false quantity in prosody, at the present day, will scarcely 
do more than cause a smile ; but in chemistry it ma}' be fatal. It 
goes without saying that in all our courses, when the least degree of 
danger is apprehended, well-considered and exact directions are given 
before each practical exercise ; indeed the caution used would seem 
excessive to any one who did not know with what heedless subjects 
we have to deal. Still, with all our caution, accidents do at times 
happen ; and, if rarely serious, the escapes frequently remind us of 
what might be. Sometimes the men, after being forewarned, incur 
the risk from mere recklessness, with full knowledge of the danger. 
Two year ago a student deliberately lighted a hydrogen flask which 
he knew contained an admixture of air, to see, as he said, if it would 
really blow up ; and last year a man was found, out of hours, rubbing 
together a considerable amount of sulphur and chlorate of potash in 
a mortar, to make fulminating powder for the purpose, doubtless, of 
sprinkling under the feet of students when entering some lecture- 
room. In this case even the man's neighbors protested ; and, when 
he would not desist, summoned the Instructor. Of course we give to 
such delinquents short shrift. But only a few weeks ago an earnest, 
faithful man, working his own way through College, came near losing 
his sight by inadvertently rubbing together in a similar way red phos- 
phorous with chlorate of potash. . A terrific explosion followed, 
scattering the fragments of the mortar in eveiy direction, and blow- 
ing the powder into the man's eyes. By prompt action, and the great 
skill of Dr. Henry W. Williams — gratuitously bestowed — the man's 
sight was saved, and no greater damage resulted than the loss of an 
insignificant amount of property. 

On carefully inquiring into the circumstances of this last case the 
Director could not see how greater care could have been taken than 
was taken, or gather any suggestions from the experience which 
would be useful for avoiding similar accidents in future. The man 


had finished the somewhat critical work for the day, through which 
he had been closely watched by the Instructor, who felt that he 
needed watching, and then, without notifying any one, undertook to 
make up, as the students call it, the experiment of an exercise from 
which he had been absent. The experiment consisted in making 
oxygen and burning phosphorous in the gas. As this work was long 
since passed no preparations had been made for the experiment that 
day, and the man had to bring together on his desk the apparatus 
and materials required from different parts of the room ; and among 
other things he procured a bottle of red phosphorous, the substance 
which he was to burn in the gas when made, and which we always use 
in this experiment in place of ordinary phosphorous because not liable 
to spontaneous combustion. Had he spoken to either of the gentle- 
men in charge they would have dealt out to him the small pinch of 
red phosphorous required, as is always done at the regular exercise. 
But he sought out the bottle of red phosphorous, which when in use 
by the class is carefully guarded, and with whose nature he was fulty 
acquainted, and carried it to his desk. The materials being before 
him he first weighed out, according to directions, eight grammes of 
chlorate of potash ; and, having poured the salt into his mortar, pro- 
ceeded to add one fourth of this weight of black oxide of manganese ; 
but, instead, in a fit of absence of mind, took the material from the 
bottle of red phosphorous ; although one powder is black and the 
other red, one heavy and the other light, and the label RED PHOS- 
PHOROUS, DANGEROUS in large capitals was all the time star- 
ing him in the face. There is no question about the facts. I give 
them as he stated them to me, and from the first he took the whole 
blame on himself. What was really at fault, however, was an over- 
worked brain acting mechanically. 

I dwell on these facts because they will show the Committee how 
much we are at the mercy of circumstances that we cannot control. 
It is easy to say that we should not leave dangerous materials within 
reach of inexperienced hands ; but many of our absolutely essential 
reagents are dangerous in the wrong place, and to leave out of the 
course every experiment in which we can foresee any risk would so 
emasculate the subject as to make the course worthless. Even then 
we should probably encounter unexpected dangers ; and a part of the 
discipline of the study consists in learning how to direct the forces of 
nature with security and efficiency. Nevertheless, the overseeing of 
such a course is very nervous work, and the teacher closes the 
laboratory door at the end of each practical exercise with a feeling 
of relief. 

It is a further important consideration in connection with the sub- 


ject, how far the College can be held pecuniarily responsible for acci- 
dents in its laboratories. This question was brought prominently to 
our notice a few years ago when a student, through neglect of definite 
directions, blew a quanthry of oil of vitriol into his face, endangering 
his sight, and severely burning the skin so as probably to disfigure 
him for life. The student blew from his mouth into a form of car- 
bonic acid generator from which he had been told to suck the air, 
when the too rapidly-formed gas drove out the strong acid contained 
in the drying flask ; and the heedless experimenter added to the 
gravit}* of the situation by refusing to wash at once the acid from his 
face. The father of the student sued the College for damages, but 
the suit has never been pressed. It is perhaps to be regretted that 
the case was not tried, since the evidence as to the facts was ample, 
and the decision must have rested on general principles ; and the 
question is likely to recur at any moment when the facts are less 
definite. In this instance, as in the accident which has recently hap- 
pened, the man was making up work out of course, and not there- 
fore under immediate supervision ; but it could be proved that he 
was present when the directions were given, and that he acted in 
direct contravention to those directions. Can more than this be re- 
quired of an instructor to absolve the College, whose servant he is, 
from all responsibility? Otherwise there would be no safety unless 
each experimenter were under constant oversight, with as many as- 
sistants as students ; and this condition, it is needless to say, would 
render experimental teaching impracticable. Fitness for his work and 
ordinary diligence and caution must be demanded of every teacher 
who undertakes experimental courses ; but more than this cannot be 
expected, and if expected, cannot be had. The patience and en- 
durance of teachers, as of other men, is limited, and these virtues 
are already severely tried in the elementary courses which I have 
described ; and it must be understood that the men who elect such 
courses assume the risk that the work implies. 

In 1851, when the writer first became acquainted with the current 
of chemical thought in Europe, organic chemistry had not yet been 
wholly emancipated from the superstitious awe with which the con- 
stitution of organized materials had hitherto been regarded. Liebig 
had already, through his theory of organic radicals, made evident to 
chemists the close analogies he had discovered between important 
classes of organic products and corresponding mineral compounds ; 
Wohler had effected his famous syntheses of urea ; Dumas had pub- 
lished his well-known memoir on organic types ; Laurent had general- 
ized the limited observations of Dumas ; and Gerhardt, Williamson, 
Wurtz, and Hofmann were even then laying the foundations of mod- 


ern structural chemistry. But no comprehensive view of the subject 
had yet been gained ; and works on ' k Organic Chemistry" were filled 
chiefly with descriptions of the proximate principles of plants and 
animals. There was little of this material which a teacher could use 
with profit. Nevertheless, Liebig's works on agricultural and animal 
chemistry had been published in translation in this country and widely 
read ; and among medical students there was a wholly unintelligent 
demand for instruction in organic in place of inorganic chemistry, 
chiefly because the name organic seemed to connect the subject with 
their profession. 

To satisf} T this demand as far as possible, the writer prepared a 
long course of lectures on this branch of his science ; and the full 
notes of these lectures, bound in two thick volumes, still exist, and 
are a fair presentation of the organic chemistry of that day. They 
are also a monument of useless labor, except for the practice it gave 
the young teacher : since the medical students did not know what 
they wanted, and found little interest in the subject, except in so far 
as it was a repetition of their Materia Medica ; and the state of prog- 
ress which the lectures represented was soon passed. 

In College there was no opportunity for many years of either study- 
ing or teaching the subject ; but its rapid development was followed 
with great interest, several classes were formed for studying the ever- 
changing aspects which the investigations of organic products opened 
to view, and every occasion was taken to direct interested students 
into that field of study. At last an earnest student was found to 
devote himself enthusiastically to this special work ; and Professor 
Hill, after learning in Europe the best methods of studying and teach- 
ing organic chemist^, returned to us to carry forward with great 
success this most important branch of our instruction. The course 
on the u Carbon Compounds" under his direction represents the 
highest phase in the development of theoretical chemistry, and in 
spite of its difficulties attracts all the best students in the deparment. 
Professor Hill has also sole charge of the large course in Qualitative 
Analysis, and is associated with the Director in charge of the courses 
in Quantitative Analysis. 

The more advanced courses and courses in research, from the very 
nature of the case, can only directly benefit a comparatively few 
advanced students ; but, as will be shown further on, they stimu- 
late more than any others the active life of the Laboratory. The 
advancd students require a great deal of thought and oversight, and 
this burden is shared b} T all the professors. 

The incumbent on the Erving foundation has been styled Professor 
of Chemistry and Mineralogy, — at least since 1816, — and the care 


of the Mineralogical Cabinet, as well as the teaching of mineralog} T , 
were designated as among the chief duties of the writer on his appoint- 
ment to this professorship. It was, however, evident from the first 
that, under the then existing scholastic system, lectures on systematic 
mineralogy must be a profitless task ; and the early courses given by 
the writer on this subject were, in fact, limited to the common me- 
tallic ores and other useful minerals and to their applications in 
metallurg3 T and the useful arts. These subjects, however, were, 
properly speaking, branches of chemistry ; and when soon after the 
course on general chemistry was extended to include them, the separ- 
ate course on mineralog3 T was given up, much to the relief of the 
professor. It was afterwards announced in the College Catalogue 
for several years that ' ' Mineralogy is taught to those who desire to 
learn it by Professor Cooke " ; and this statement immediately fol- 
lowed a similar announcement in regard to the Hebrew language. 
There were not many aspirants to either of these singularly associated 
branches of learning ; but mineralogy was quite as popular as the 
Hebrew language, and from the practice in teaching the subject thus 
gained, the writer discovered, somewhat to his own surprise, that 
when made solely a subject for object-lessons the study of determi- 
native mineralogy was an admirable training of the powers of observa- 
tion, and therefore a disciplinary study of the highest value. The 
writer was thus led to develop a system of teaching mineralog} T by 
observation alone ; and when a laboratory course in chemistry was 
finally allowed as one of the elective studies of the Junior year, the 
exercises of the second term were given to mineralogy, while those 
of the first term were devoted to qualitative analysis ; and afterwards 
when a second laboratory course was allowed, this was limited to 
mineralogy and crystallography. The course thus established as 
early as 1868-69 is still given and attracts a large number of stu- 
dents. In addition to this, for the last few years a second course 
has been given, more limited and technical in its character, dealing 
only with the common minerals of the rocks and with metalic ores, 
and including the simpler methods of assaying. 

Experimental chemistry and not the natural history aspect of the 
subject was the writer's early predilection, and he never made a sys- 
tematic study of mineralogy until it was forced upon him by the 
exigences of his position. But the subject soon grew upon him and 
he devoted himself with zeal to developing the collection under his 
charge ; and he looks back with not a little pleasure to his early 
vacation excursions in search of mineral specimens ; in several of 
which he was accompanied by the present President of the University. 
This zeal in collecting was greatly sustained by the circumstance that 


a mineral collection was then regarded as one of the chief ornaments 
of a New England college, and a comparison with her sister institutions 
in this respect was by no means favorable to Harvard. 

But in bringing together a collection which shall adequate^ exhibit 
the extent and beauty of the mineral kingdom the amount that can 
be accomplished by private collecting is very limited, and success is 
a question of money and opportunities. The opportunities are sure 
to come in time ; but these are of no avail without the means of uti- 
lizing them ; and the zeal of the writer would have had little result 
had it not been for the liberality with which he has been aided by the 
friends of the College. On four separate occasions he has obtained 
by subscription the means of increasing the collection amounting in 
the aggregate to over twenty thousand dollars ; and this sum, together 
with a small annual grant by the Corporation, and frequent small gifts 
of his own, have in forty } T ears produced the actual result. There has 
been great pleasure in the occupation and unnumbered disappoint- 
ments. How painful it is to be obliged to forego a grand opportunity 
for the want of the few dollars required for the purchase, only the 
enthusiastic collector can understand. He knows that the opportunity 
to purchase a similar unique specimen will never come again ; for 
such things are usually found in a single pocket of a mine, and rarely 
recur under like extraordinary aspects. So true is this that it would 
be impossible with any amount of money to reproduce exactly any old 
cabinet of minerals. Time is an essential element in bringing together 
a truly representative collection ; and the collector of a public museum 
has this consolation that there is time enough ahead, if not for him 
certainly for those that will come after him. He is fortunate who 
can make sure of his own acquisitions, and transmit them as a legacy 
to be multiplied by his successors. 

You can then understand the anxiety of the Director in that a col- 
lection gathered at the cost of so much time and money should be 
exposed to the danger from fire incident to an active chemical labora- 
tory, and appreciate his gratitude to the kind and liberal friends who at 
this emergengy have united to provide for the Museum a fire-proof and 
suitable home where it can not only have room to grow, but where it 
can be made of the greatest possible use in teaching and extending 
the science of mineralogy. The walls of the building have been 
erected already, and besides the large exhibition room there have been 
provided a preparation room, a room for the Curator, a large minera- 
logical laboratory and lecture room, besides laboratories for the analy- 
sis of minerals and the essay of ores. Since the details connected with 
the subscription, and with the erection of the mineralogical section of 
the " University Museum " have recently been stated by the Director 


in his report to the President of the University for last } T ear, it is un- 
necessar}^ to repeat the statements in this place. 

The mineralogical collections and laboratory now occupy fully one 
foarth of Boylston Hall and their removal to the new building will, 
therefore, open a large amount of space which has long been needed 
for the extension of the chemical laboratories. The best use of this 
space will be a subject of careful consideration. It has been proposed 
to use the present exhibition room on the second story for a large 
lecture room, which with the galleries could readily be made to ac- 
commodate an audience of five hundred persons. The corresponding 
room on the third story will make an ample organic laboratory, and 
is especially adapted to this purpose ; as it has a large skylight which 
could be made to afford good ventilation. From the small lecture 
room on the third stoiy, divided b}^ suitable partitions, we can make a 
spectroscope room, a balance room, and a room for organic analysis, 
all of which are indispensable adjuncts to the larger laboratories. 
The present mineralogical laboratory on the second story can then be 
used for meeting the smaller classes. Moreover on the ground floor 
we shall be able to give more suitable accommodations to Professor 
Jackson ; and by using his present private laboratory as a cloak room, 
render more difficult the depredations of sneak thieves by which 
hitherto we have been periodically greatly annoj'ed. 

Still it must be borne in mind that we cannot by any transforma- 
tions make out of Boylston Hall a first class chemical laboratoiy of 
the modern type. We do expect to make it convenient for all man- 
ner of chemical investigations ; but no such extension of chemical 
study as has taken place was contemplated in the erection of the 
building, and it cannot be expected to compare with the large labora- 
tories recently built in Europe at great cost and supported by gov- 
ernment grants. Through the kindness of Professor Hill the Director 
has the opportunity of laying before the Committee the plans of the 
great laboratory recently built at Zurich by the Swiss government at 
the cost, with the outfit, of three hundred and forty thousand dollars ; 
and it will be seen that our humble establishment, even in its largest 
possible expansion, must present a sorry contrast to this magnificence. 
Results and privileges do not, however, necessarily go hand in hand, 
and we shall continue to do the best we can with what w T e have, and 
are not ashamed of our past record. Nevertheless students are 
greatly attracted by externals, and in our competition for advanced 
students we cannot afford to disregard such accessories ; and the 
time will come when there will be a strong demand from our own 
alumni for a large chemical ]aborator}^ of the most recent type. That 
this demand will be supplied in good season we have no doubt. But 


not only the first cost of such an establishment, but also the cost of 
its maintenance, will be so large — requiring with the endowment at 
least half a million of dollars — that we cannot expect to obtain the 
means required by any system of subscriptions, and must wait until 
some very wealthy friend of the College shall take pleasure in giving 
this direction to a great benefaction. Let it be fulty understood, 
however, that it is not from any dissatisfaction with our present 
appliances, but solely from a loyal desire to see Harvard preeminent 
in evety department, and as the only means of securing the ultimate 
fulfilment of our hopes, that we call attention to this need of the 
future, and would seek to keep it prominently before the public mind. 

Enthusiasm for truth and for learning is the only never-failing 
source of intellectual life in an institution like ours ; and genuine 
enthusiasm for knowledge can only be snstained by scientific investi- 
gation or advanced study. Scientific and literary productiveness are 
the best indication of scholarly life in the teacher ; and it is through 
the life of the teacher that the life of the student is sustained. 
Organization, rules, discipline, and the whole machinery of petty 
politics may be necessary evils of college life, but they have an abso- 
lutely deadening influence unless overpowered by the flame of enthu- 
siasm kept ever burning warm and bright. It is, therefore, with no 
little pride that we are able to point to what our laboratory has done 
for chemical science. 

In the earlier years of its existence the energy of its one teacher 
was in very great measure spent in the class-room, and in developing 
its resources. During this period the publications from the labora- 
tory were more or less scattered ; but still scarcely a year passed 
without some result. Since, however, the reorganization of the 
department in 1870-71, and the division of the responsibilit}^ among 
several teachers, the work of investigation has gone forward con- 
tinuously and in very definite channels, and the Director has the 
pleasure of laying before the Committee three octavo volumes in which 
most of the papers published from the laborato^ since 1871 have 
been collected and bound together. It is not for us to boast, but 
among ourselves we may sa} T with all modesty that there is not a 
single university among English speaking people which can show as 
good a record ; and even in Germany, where the cultivation of 
chemistry is so greatty fostered, it is only at two or three centres 
of intellectual activity that this record has been greatly surpassed. 
Of course the value of such publications is not to be judged alone by 
their volume, for an important discovery may be stated in a few 
words, and a short paper often contains the results of a year's hard 
work. To those familiar only with literary work three volumes in 


eighteen years might seem a meagre result ; but the actual number of 
days' work they represent would have filled a small library had it 
been expended on ordinary book-making. 

It should also be remembered that chemistry has technical bearings 
which are attractive and lucrative, and the singleness with which the^ 
active teachers of the laborafcny have devoted their spare time during 
this long period of years to wholly unremunerative scientific work is 
worthy of more emphatic recognition than it is fitting for the Director 
to bestow. If the accelerated progress in the past is any sure indica- 
tion of the future we have every reason to hope that, with the con- 
tinuance of such zeal, American chemistry will soon hold a prominent 
place among the intellectual activities of the world. 

JOSIAH P. COOKE, Director. 



Colonel Charles R. Codman, President of Board of Overseers : — 

Sir, — After carefully examining the organization and condition 
of the Veterinary College, as well as outside influences bearing on its 
efficiency, your Committee would respectfully report that, while in 
their opinion its administration is as perfect as the restricted condi- 
tion of its finances will permit, they feel its influence to be far below 
the proper standard for a department of Harvard University in which 
so much good to the community might be accomplished if supported 
by the necessary amount of money. 

The want of success in attracting a sufficient number of students is 
very apparent; and, although increased numbers might furnish the 
desired financial relief, your Committee feel that nothing short of 
more ample financial resources will enable the College to furnish 
those facilities in the direction of clinical instruction which seem 
essential to attract to it a greater body of students. 

While financial matters remain in their present meagre and insuffi- 
cient state, your Committee fail to see how any suggestion from them 
can help on the good work for which the College was established. 

Yours very truly, 



Boston, April 5th, 1890. 



To the Board of Overseers : — 

We, the undersigned, members of the Committee appointed to visit 
the Jefferson Physical Laboratory, have to report that daring the 
present year there has been — in our opinion — a marked improve- 
ment in its organization and conduct with regard to the instruction of 
undergraduates and the promotion of original research. 

A statement that much has been done in the latter direction, is the 
strongest tribute that can be paid to the zeal, scientific ability, and 
mechanical skill of the Director and his staff of professional assist- 
ants ; but we feel that these gentlemen cannot do full justice to 
themselves or the Laboratory until such time as a fund is established 
the income of which shall secure to them the services of a skilled 

The Director indicates clearly the pressing need of the Laboratory 
in this regard in his last annual report to the President of the Uni- 
versity ; and the President makes kindly mention of it in his report 
to the Board of Overseers. 

We, in turn, commend this need to most favorable consideration ; 
for we are strongly of the opinion that the acceptance of the magnifi- 
cent Laboratory building as a gift carries with it an implied trust, 
on the part of the University, that Science shall receive from it the 
fruits of original research it is so well fitted to yield. 



The report of the Committee appointed to visit the Jefferson Phys- 
ical Laboratory was read and accepted. 

Voted, That the Board recognizes the importance of the sugges- 
tions made in the report just accepted ; and that it will heartily 
endorse any movement toward establishing a fund for promoting 
physical research at the Jefferson Physical Laboratory. 

29 April, 1890. 



To the Board of Overseers of Harvard University : — 

Your Committee has been much tempted to consider the subject of 
a radical change in the organization of the Historical Department. 
It seems to them quite possible that a plan might be adopted whereby 
any person desiring to deliver a course of lectures on historical subjects, 
upon demonstrating his fitness so to do, might receive a license from the 
College government for this purpose. The capacity of the individual 
lecturer to interest and stimulate students would thus be given full 
pla} r ; many persons, profoundly interested in the subject, might be 
attracted to prove their qualifications as instructors ; and the natural 
result of the competition would probably be the bringing to the front 
and retaining permanently the best men for the task. It would seem 
also that the element of inspiration and a quickening of interest in the 
students could in no way be more surely secured. If such an experi- 
ment is feasible and worth trying there is no department of under- 
graduate instruction in which it could be made with better prospects 
of success than in that of history. Your Committee, however, recog- 
nizes that this is such a radical change of system that it is perhaps 
beyond their proper function to recommend it ; nor indeed would they 
venture actually to recommend, without a much more thorough in- 
vestigation than they have been able to make into the details and 
difficulties involved in the change. They content themselves for the 
present with throwing out the suggestion, in the hope that, if it 
has merit, it may receive consideration Irv the President of the 

In making this suggestion the Committee is in no respect influenced 
by an} 7 feeling that the Department, as at present organized, is un- 
satisfactory. On the contrary, if it be admitted that the present 
system is the best, or the only practicable one, the conduct of the 
Department under it deserves only commendation. Indeed, your 
Committee takes great pleasure in bearing testimony to the zeal, 
earnestness, and interest which they have found on the part equally 
of the instructors and the students ; both sides seem to be doing their 
best and with admirable results. All the conditions of instruction 
are so immensely in advance of what existed at Harvard within the 
experience of most gentlemen now upon the Board of Overseers, that 


your Committee greatly regrets that they have not time and space to 
describe the present state of historical instruction. It would be an 
interesting and a very encouraging and gratifying sketch. But con- 
fining themselves to their strict duties they make the following- 

They conceive that the unity of the Department is susceptible of 
improvement, and needs it. The inter-locking, or correlation of the 
several courses, is fairly good, but only fairly so ; there is a little 
overlapping, a little disproportion, perhaps an occasional slight hiatus. 
The parts are only moderately well arranged as going to make up a 
continuous, inter-related logical whole. Your Committee believes 
that a more satisfactory relation, connection, and proportion of 
courses could be achieved. It has been suggested that this could 
be brought about by establishing one responsible head of the Depart- 
ment ; if the right man could be obtained, this might be the best way ; 
but as he should combine that high prestige which gives authorit}^ 
and overrides jealousy, with a faculty for instruction, administrative 
ability, tact, and remarkable acquirements, it must be admitted that 
the chance of obtaining him is small. If this cannot be done, your 
Committee is of opinion that the instructors in the Department should 
themselves organize into a sort of board or council, to discuss, map 
out. and agree upon the plan of the Department as a whole ; that the 
parts should be distributed in snch a manner as to cany out this plan ; 
and the several courses be defined and allotted with special regard to 
connection, proportion, and to covering the entire ground, but with- 
out duplication. If the instructors could work together in such a 
board or council in a liberal or friendly spirit, as }^our Committee 
hopes and believes that they could, the} T ought to be able to accom- 
plish some very useful remodelling. 

Your Committee is greatly pleased with the efforts that are making 
for the publication from time to time of historical monographs. 
Nothing can be more stimulating to first-rate original work, and to 
preliminary preparation for such work. Besides the professors and 
instructors there are men in the advanced courses who are capable of 
doing and are doing excellent work of substantial value, who are able 
to make and are making investigations which duplicate no previous 
work and which are well worth preservation and dissemination. 
Further, apart from the consideration of the desirability of this 
scheme in the conduct of the Department, no such good means can 
be found of making known to the world what Harvard College is 
doing in the way of historical work. Johns Hopkins University by 
its publications in history has acquired widespread and justly de- 
served reputation. It may be said to be a legitimate form of adver- 


tising and a most efficient and admirable one, since it is by a display 
of actual results. Why should Harvard hide her light under a bushel? 
A trifling appropriation of monej' each year would suffice for this 
purpose, and your Committee believes that a small sum could not be 
better expended. 

Unpleasant as it is to make recommendations involving the ex- 
penditure of money, your Committee is obliged to say that the need 
for an increase of library service is absolutely indispensable if the 
Department is to maintain an} T good degree of efficiency. Much 
reading is now inevitably required in all the courses, and very great 
numbers of students select historical courses. The consequence is 
a scramble for books, of which the supply is lamentably inadequate. 
The simple truth is that it is physically impossible for students to do 
what they are required to do, and what they are ready and ambitious 
to do, unless the College greatly increases the number of copies of 
the more important books for their use. A score of men tumbling 
over each other's heels in an eager race to get a chance to snatch first 
the prescribed volume, is not an edif}dng sight. Men who wish to do 
what they are bidden to do ought at least to have the books furnished 
to them. Your Committee urges emphatically that much greater lib- 
eral^ in providing duplicate copies of books in common use is an 
imperative duty which the College ought to make every effort to 
perform. None but the richest students can make such provision for 
themselves ; if the College cannot or will not do it on a greatly more 
generous scale than it does at present, then its requirements from 
the large body of students of history are in some degree at least 

Your Committee has consulted not only with instructors in the His- 
torical Department, but also with many gentlemen who have lately 
graduated and taken honors in history. By these gentlemen many 
suggestions have been made, some of which are embodied in the 
foregoing paragraphs, and others deserve to be noted as perhaps 
possessing merit and deserving consideration. 

Especially your Committee agrees with the opinion which has 
reached them from various quarters that the theses of the students 
in the advanced historical courses should be allowed to count for 
honors. This seems so obviously proper that your Committee cannot 
doubt that the mere suggestion will alone suffice to accompli h the 

It has also been urged, not without a good show of reason, that 
History I. might be made at least an optional or substitute offering 
at the examination for admission. But desirable as this would be 
on some grounds, it is certain that no preparatory schools could at 


present bring the students to the point to which this course, as now 
conducted, brings them. It is a very valuable course. 

The work in special reports is generally commended by the grad- 
uates who have had experience in it, though they unite in expressing 
a fear that it may be carried too far, at the cost of the advantages 
to be derived from a more broad and general study. It cannot be 
doubted that a careful discretion should be exercised in this respect, 
in order to avoid the temptation to carry topical study to an excess 
to the exclusion of wider instruction ; and special research should 
onry follow after courses of greater breadth. But your Committee 
thinks very highly of this " special research" ; it interests and stim- 
ulates the student ; trains him admirably in the use of material ; 
educates him in the methods of doing real work, and compels that 
thoroughness and accuracy in which young men are apt to be deficient. 
There seems no sufficient reason to believe that this form of instruc- 
tion is now given disproportionate importance, though it probably 
could not be magnified without this objection becoming valid. 

It has been also urged that History IX. and History XII. should 
each be allowed to count for honors in Political Science ; that they do 
not now so count is said to deter many students from taking them. 
This your Committee does not feel competent to determine, but offer 
the suggestion for consideration by the President and Faculty. 

A general course in modern European history is also asked for, and 
would seem to be obviously very desirable, if it can be arranged. 

For the Committee : 

JOHN T. MORSE. Jr., Chairman. 
Presented May 21, 1890. 



To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : — 

Your Committee have been impressed with the unparalleled advan- 
tages offered by the Peabody Museum for study and for research. 
It is indeed a cause for regret that although the collections present 
opportunities for instruction and investigation rarely equalled and 
nowhere surpassed in importance, yet students at the University have 
seldom availed themselves of the advantages offered. 

The growing interest in American Ethnology and Archaeology 
justifies recognition of these branches in the University courses of 
instruction. The great importance of these subjects, although recog- 
nized by learned societies in Europe and already provided for to a 
certain extent by other universities in this country, has been met 
only in part at Harvard by the appointment of a Peabody Professor ; 
but no regular course of instruction has yet been given. 

The Committee respectfully suggest that lectures, combined with 
laboratory work, counting as a half-course, be offered as one of the 
regular branches of instruction, and that special inducements be made 
to attract advanced students to pursue this line of study. These 
branches seem to be of sufficient importance to warrant their recogni- 
tion in conferring the degrees of Ph.D. and S.D. 

The need of the Museum for funds with which to furnish the new 
rooms is pressing, but the Committee are of the opinion that the mat- 
ters to which they have called attention are of greater importance. 
Collections, however complete, are of little value except when made 
a basis of study and investigation. 

The salary of the Peabody Professor is in the opinion of the Com- 
mittee entirely inadequate, and they recommend that an increase be 
granted him from the College funds. 

The Committee also recommend the establishment of fellowships 
by means of which students wishing to pursue Ethnological and 
Archaeological studies could be aided in their work. 

The Committee are authorized to offer to the Trustees of the 
Peabody Museum $10,000 to establish a fellowship in American 
Archaeology, and have also been offered the sum of $500 a year for 


three years for a similar fellowship, both to be given on condition 
that a third fellowship shall be assigned by the Corporation of Har- 
vard College to the students of American Archaeology. 


Presented May 21, 1890. 




The department of In do -Iranian languages lias an importance for 
the University quite out of proportion to the number of students that 
are attracted to such studies. In our country, for some time to come, 
that number is likely to be small in comparison with the number in 
England, where there is a direct practical incentive, or in Germany, 
where the disinterested pursuit of knowledge is more general than as 
yet in America. Yet for certain important purposes the indispensa- 
bleness of Indo-Iranian studies has long since been fully demonstrated. 
One might as well try to be an astronomer without a knowledge of the 
calculus, or a physician without the knowledge of chemistry, as to 
approach the higher problems of philology before obtaining some 
acquaintance with Sanskrit and its kindred languages ; while the value 
of such studies to the teacher of the classics, or to the student of 
the comparative history of religion, philosophy, or jurisprudence is 
becoming year by year more apparent. Twenty years ago the few 
American students who had some inkling of the importance of San- 
skrit were deterred by the difficulty and expense, due to the lack not 
only of teachers but also of text-books constructed with proper refer- 
ence to pedagogical requirements and so published as to be readily 
and cheaply procurable in America. The publication of Professor 
Whitney's Sanskrit Grammar and Professor Lanman's Sanskrit Reader 
has done much to smooth the way for the student ; and Professor 
Lanman is about to prepare a grammar still more directly adapted to 
the needs of beginners than am^ as } T et obtainable. In all kinds of prog- 
ress it is proverbially the first steps that are the hardest, and bearing 
this in mind it may be said that a fair beginning in the study of Sanskrit 
has been made at Harvard. During the present year there have been 
8 students, of whom 4 are graduates. One is an' instructor in the Col- 
lege, who will probably devote himself to teaching the classics ; 
another is a teacher in one of the large schools of Boston ; a third is 
pursuing a course of liberal study. Of the undergraduate students 
the professor reports that they have shown great zeal and industry 
and have done excellent work. 

Small as such numbers are, it may already be observed that Har- 
vard graduates, going to various other colleges and giving instruction 
in Sanskrit, have done something toward putting the philological 
study of Greek, Latin, and English upon a broader and sounder basis, 


and in the natural course of things this will continue to go on to an 
increasing extent. Although he has not collected precise statistics, 
Professor Lanman has observed from the college catalogues not 
infrequently sent to him, that since the appearance of his Reader and 
Professor Whitney's Grammar the number of institutions in which 
courses of instruction in Sanskrit are offered has increased very 
remarkably ; and your Committee cordially agree with the professor 
in the opinion that " surely the work of Harvard teachers is not and 
ought not to be restricted to the young men actually gathered within 
our College walls." 

In his Annual Report for the year 1887-88 the President of the Uni- 
versity expresses a regret that its resources are not sufficient to pro- 
vide, to a greater extent than has been heretofore practicable, for the 
promotion of original research and the advancement of learning, as 
well as for the instruction and guidance of its students. In the con- 
duct of our University the latter purpose must naturally take prece- 
dence, but the former has likewise an importance that can hardly be 
overrated. At present, while the Indo-Iranian department is less 
crowded with students than some others, an opportunity is afforded 
for work which it is highly desirable should be done, and which is 
sure to add much to the reputation of the University. During his 
last year's leave of absence, in the course of which he visited Europe 
and India, Professor Lanman formed a plan for the publication of a 
Harvard Oriental Series, to be edited by himself with the co-operation 
of various scholars at home and abroad. The series is intended to 
include original texts in Sanskrit, Pali, Prakrit, and Avestan, besides 
translations, and even systematic treatises upon pertinent subjects. 
The general plan contemplates printing these works from electrotype 
plates, so that until an edition is superseded by something better it 
need never be out of print and unobtainable, as is often the case with 
the small European editions of from 300 to 800 copies. It is import- 
ant that these books should be cheap, and to this end the work of 
type-setting and electrotyping should be paid for from the annual 
income of a moderate endowment fund in the hands of the College. 
Steps have been taken toward raising such a fund, which it is hoped 
and expected will amount to about $15,000. Already the proofs of 
the first volume extend to the 168th page. It is the Jataka Mala, a 
collection of Buddhist legends, edited by one of the foremost Indian- 
ists in Europe, Professor Kern, of the University of Ley den. Pro- 
fessor Garbe, of Konigsberg, has nearly ready the text of the 
Samkhya-pravacana-bhashya, one of the most important works of 
the Samkhya school of philosophy. Mr. Henry C. Warren, of Bos- 
ton, has prepared a collection of translations from the Pali texts of the 


sacred books of Buddhism, so chosen and arranged as to give a clear 
view of the genesis of Buddhistic doctrine. Contributions to the series 
have been promised by M. Boehtlingk, of the Imperial Academy 
of Russia, and by Professors Cappeller of Jena, Pischel of Halle, 
Windisch of Leipsic, and Kielhorn of Gottingen. This is surely a 
most auspicious beginning for a noble enterprise. If in the course of 
the next twenty years the College shall put forth a set of volumes, 
accurate and scholarly, attractive in appearance, and with every con- 
venience for facilitating the acquisition of Sanskrit and the allied 
tongues, it can hardly fail to have a deep and powerful effect upon 
the progress of Oriental studies, not only in America, but in the world 
at large, for no such plan has as yet been conceived and executed in 
the Occident. 

This is perhaps the most proper place to add that during his visit 
to India Professor Lanman secured for the College nearly 500 mss. 
through the aid of the agent employed to purchase for the great Bom- 
bay governmental collection at Poona. By a most happy coincidence 
Mr. Fitzedward Hall has made over his extremely valuable collection 
of about 500 mss., gathered many years ago in India, to the College ; 
so that we now possess nearly 1000 Indian mss. here at Cambridge, 
and have accordingly by far the most important collection of Oriental 
mss. in America. The opportunities for the publication of really 
meritorious essays and investigations by students resorting to this 
University, through the columns of the Journal of the American Ori- 
ental Society, and in the volumes of the Harvard Oriental Series, 
when once it becomes an assured success, will be most excellent ; 
while the material is already such as can be found nowhere else this 
side the Atlantic. 

The probability that the University is about to enter upou a course 
of publications so likely to be interesting and useful in Europe as well 
as in America suggests to the mind of your Committee an important 
practical question. It is a question which concerns not merely the 
department of Indo-Iranian languages, but every department which is 
engaged, or expects to be engaged, in publishing through the aid of 
an endowment fund monographs or journals or bulletins in illustration 
of the special subjects to which it is devoted. It is a question, in 
short, which concerns the whole University ; but inasmuch as the 
enterprise above described has suggested it quite forcibly to your 
Committee, we take occasion to mention it in this connection. 

In the last Annual Report of the President of the University (for 
the year 1888-89) there was loosely inserted an interesting list of the 
University's serial publications ; and it was observed in the concluding 
paragraph of the Report that "the fact that the University had the 


means of publishing valuable papers by its officers and students, 
and securing for them a suitable distribution, will stimulate the pro- 
duction of such papers." This raises the question whether the Uni- 
versity at present has the means or is employing the measures best 
adapted to securing a suitable distribution for its publications. There 
are some grounds for believing that this question must be answered 
in the negative. There seems to be on the part of the public a wide- 
spread belief that a larger quanta of original scientific work is done 
at the Johns Hopkins University than at Harvard. If this belief is 
not founded upon fact, it is unfair and probably to some extent dele- 
terious to Harvard. It is the opinion of }^our Committee that this 
belief is not borne out by facts, but is to be explained by the circum- 
stance that the Johns Hopkins University employs more systematic 
and effective measures for letting the public know what it is accom- 
plishing. That broadside, laid loosely under the cover of the Annual 
Report, and thus brought to the notice of a very few people, is b} r 
no means an equivalent for the judicious advertising done by the 
University at Baltimore under the supervision of its able publication 
agency. There is nothing meretricious in this advertising ; it is 
simply telling students all over the country how to get possession 
of valuable aids to their work. 

The publications of our Uuiversity, as the President reminds us, 
" will naturally be various in form and quality ; they ma} r or may not 
be serial, and they may or may not be issued through an ordinary 
publishing house ; they may be of such general interest as to com- 
mand a sale, or they may be so technical as to be read b} r a few 
specialists only." Doubtless in the long run the best work of the 
UniversUrv must find expression in books too learned and tech- 
nical to command a sale, or to attract publishers desirous of making 
a profit. The expense of publishing such works will naturally be 
borne by funds established for the purpose. The question then 
arises whether the University would not do well to have some per- 
manent publication agency, or department of publication, with a 
permanent functionary at its head, such as the Johns Hopkins Univer- 
sity has now had for some years. It would naturally, be the business 
of such a department, under the supervision of some special com- 
mittee, perhaps a committee of the University Council, to superintend 
the publication and sale of all serials and other works issued by the 
University at the expense of its various publication funds. Perma- 
nency of name and habitat should by all means characterize this pub- 
lishing department, so that Harvard University should come to be 
known all over the world in this capacity, so that a scholar in Finland 
or Armenia would know how to address to it an order for books as 


readily as he would address such an order to such an ancient and 
honorable firm as for example that of Brockhaus. Upon the title- 
page of all the publications there should be a characteristic imprint 
as unmistakable as, for example, that of Aldus. Into each book 
should be sewed a list of all the publications of the University, with 
an announcement, in clear, heavy type, of the post-office address to 
which orders for books and checks in payment for the same should 
be sent, and this address should contain the characteristic name or 
imprint to be found upon all title-pages. 

These points having been established, a certain amount of adver- 
tising should be done by this publishing department. Through the 
appropriate channels it should give information to the scholarly and 
scientific world of the scholarly and scientific publications of the 
UnivershVy. Such advertising is not of the meretricious sort so com- 
mon in our time, nor need it be so costly as the advertising in which 
publishing houses are wont to engage. It is not an affair of puffing 
ephmeral novels in the columns of a newspaper ; it is an affair of 
bringing the publications of the University to the notice of scientific 
men and scholars who are on the look-out for such things and are 
only too glad to learn how and where they can obtain them. It re- 
quires at most the insertion of simple and modest lists in the most 
appropriate monthlies or quarterlies in America and in Europe, at 
proper and regular intervals ; and this need not be very costly. It 
is the opinion of your Committee that such concentration of the 
publishing work of the University and such judicious and proper 
advertising would redound to the credit of the University and 
strengthen its influence and reputation at home and abroad in a 
thoroughly wholesome way. 

It is well for universities and other learned bodies to publish learned 
books for the use of scholars whose business it is either to carry 
on the work of original research or else to disseminate the results of 
investigation and thus benefit the general public. In either of these 
wajs the work is helpful to mankind. But as many generous spirits, 
who wish to help their fellow-men, think their work is done when 
they have got a new statute enacted, and quite fail to take account of 
the difficulty there may be in enforcing the statute ; so it is liable to 
fare with the publications of learned bodies. Take for example the 
Journal of the American Oriental Society, — a treasury of superb 
scholarship ; how are American scholars to get it, and still more, how 
are European scholars to get it? It is almost a misuse of language 
to say that it is published. It is printed, and then packed away in 
some alcove or cupboard in New Haven. Copies are sent for sale to 
an eminently respectable shop in New York. The sales are naturally 


too small to awaken the shop's interest in the book. Of advertising 
there is virtually none, or so little that European scholars, doubtless 
few in number, athirst for the book, do not know whom to address, 
or how to get it. Thus the society fails to do the work it ought 
legitimately to do, and the world fails to profit by its labors. The 
result is so trivial that years pass by before the bookseller thinks it 
worth while to send in an account of his sales. In the pressure of his 
business, this is an affair to which he applies the maxim, De minimis 
non curat lex. 

Now if this Journal were to be published, like the Johns Hopkins 
University Studies in Political Science and Histor}', with a proper 
indication as to how and where it could be obtained, it would doubt- 
less reach fourfold the number of scholars that it now reaches ; and 
the interests of Oriental scholarship, as well as the reputation of 
the United States for work in that department, would be sensibly 

Through its publication agency the University might at regular 
intervals — perhaps quarterly — publish a bulletin or catalogue of its 
literary productions somewhat like those of Brockhaus and Truboer. 
It would be a highly creditable one. 

It is apt to be the case that any executive office or department, 
when once established, tends to increase the scope of its activity and 
the number of its functions. Professors and other persons connected 
with the University who write books, will naturally seek the publish- 
ers who offer the most favorable terms or can handle the books most 
profitably. It is not improbable that the reputation of the Univer- 
sity's publishing department might become such as to make it an 
advantageous channel for the publication of the writings of some 
individual authors, as well as those published by the University from 
its endowment funds. 

This whole subject of a publication agenc} T is full of suggestions ; 
but it is the wish of your Committee to avoid encumbering the case 
with details, or urging it with undue presumption. But to illustrate 
its practical importance we may, in conclusion, cite from the Presi- 
dent's Annual Report for the year 1886-87. It is there observed 
that ' ' the number of graduates of other colleges who attend this 
[the graduate] department, though increasing of late, is still far from 
satisfactory. Not a single graduate of any other college than Har- 
vard was studying either history or political science at Cambridge in 
1886-87, and only five such graduates are pursuing one or other of 
those subjects at the University during the current year. These facts 
seem to prove that the advantages offered here to advanced students 
of history and political science are practically unknown beyond the 


University precincts. It may be that some improvement in this 
respect will be wrought by the publication for the University of the 
Quarterly Journal of Economics, the first number of which appeared 
in October, 1886, and which has already won for itself an honorable 
place among economic serials." 

This quotation seems ve^ much to the point. As students are apt 
to be drawn to institutions where the best work is done and by the 
most eminent masters in their several departments, it appears in the 
highest degree probable that an organized and systematic method of 
publication would soon show results in an increased number of stu- 
dents and a general strengthening of the University. In the hope 
that enough has been said to indicate clearly the nature of the need 
which is felt, our report is respectfully submitted. 


Presented June 11, 1890. 



The Committee appointed to visit the Arnold Arboretum beg leave 
to make the following report : — 

In the first week in June, on invitation of Professor Sargent, they 
visited the Arboretum. 

As shown by the maps of Professor Sargent, this Arboretum is laid 
out on a more extensive and thorough scale than anything of the kind 
in the world. The agreement under which the Arboretum was laid 
out and arranged is probably known to most of you, but to such as 
may not know, it may be well to state that the City of Boston builds 
the roads, keeps them in order, and polices them and the grounds. 
The College takes charge of planting the trees and taking care of the 

Trees and shrubs are planted according to a carefully designed 
plan. A section is devoted to every kind of hardy tree. In each 
section a tree is planted which is supposed to represent a handsome 
specimen tree of the kind. Near by are planted a number of the 
same kind of trees together, to grow up as they naturally would in a 
grove. The same plan is carried out with regard to all the hardy 
shrubs in accordance with the terms of Mr. Arnold's will. 

Each tree that has been planted has a certain number assigned to it, 
and on a comprehensive plan of the whole Arboretum, showing where 
each tree is planted, this number is marked. In a book of records 
kept at the office of the Arboretum this number is entered, and against 
it is the history of the tree ; where it came from, when it was planted, 
and everything that is known about it. A corresponding tag is also 
placed upon each tree when it is planted. Should this tag, however, 
be lost, as such tree is topographically placed on the plan, it can 
always be referred to and its full history known. The thoroughness 
of this work, and the amount of labor that has been expended upon 
it, merit the greatest praise, and your Committee feel that too much 
credit cannot be given to Mr. Sargent and his able assistants, Mr. 
Faxon and Mr. Jack. When finished, the Arboretum will be a credit 
to the University, the City of Boston, and the State of Massachusetts. 

An interesting addition to the Arboretum is the planting of native 
shrubs all over the ground, completely covering it. The theory of 
Professor Sargent in doing this is that these shrubs will hold leaves 


and keep the ground from drying up, and in doing so will also fur- 
nish material for enriching the ground. In addition to this, the care 
of such ground is much less expensive than a lawn, which has to be 
carefully kept, and requires a great deal of labor to keep it in good 

The work in the Arboretum so far is about half completed, and the 
laying out and building by the City of the rest of the roads, it is 
hoped, will be speedily done in order that the College may complete 
their part of the contract by planting trees, as agreed upon. 

In connection with the Arboretum there is an interesting nursery 
of shrubs and trees. Everything new is planted here to be experi- 
mented upon, under the care of an able gardener, Mr. Jackson Daw- 
son, a man who has the most decided talent in this direction. 

In one of his own houses at Brookline, Professor Sargent has a 
most valuable collection of woods, representing almost- every kind of 
tree that is known in the world. He also has, where it is possible, 
the flower, leaf, and seed-vessel of every such tree. It is a most 
interesting and valuable collection. 

When the Arboretum is laid out, the plan embraces a museum 
there in which all these woods shall be stored. 

Presented June 24, 1890. 



To the Overseers of Harvard College : — 

Your Committee has the honor to report — 

That the}- find it to be the feeling of Professor Paine that a new 
pianoforte is needed for the recitation and examination room in Dane 
Hall ; if a new one be not obtained, it will be well to have the old one 
thoroughly put in order. 

That it is desirable to have bought duplicate copies of the most 
needed text-books, histories, orchestral scores, &c, to be kept in the 
recitation room, instead of having them borrowed from the Library 
as at present. As it is now such books are taken out of possible cir- 
culation from the Library, and that is left without some of its most 
important musical volumes at a time when they are most needed. 
And that it is to be hoped that a more suitable room may be given 
to the Department of Music for recitations and examinations. This 
room should be large enough to seat more of an audience than 
Sever 11, and yet be of a suitable size for recitations. 

In this room small concerts (perhaps of an historical character) 
could be given under the direction of the Professor of Music at small 
expense. Such concerts would be a help to the Department of Music, 
and would undoubtedly add to the interest felt by the students. 

The cost of the small library would be from $200 to $500. 


Presented June 24, 1890. 



There has been a large increase in the number of students at the 
School during the past year — the attendance having been 65, against 
35 the previous year. 

This gain may be due to a larger and more complete curriculum 
than the School has been hitherto able to offer ; to the growing belief 
that it is to continue to be a separate part of the University ; and to 
still another cause, which cannot be overlooked, namely, the stimu- 
lating personal influence of the Dean of the School, whose zeal for 
its interests has aroused a like enthusiasm among the students. 

In view of the present satisfactory progress of the School, your 
Committee have no recommendations to make, except to reiterate the 
need of a Mechanical laboratory where instruction can be given in 
handling tools. A limited number of students are now carried 
through a course of Manual Training by the Cambridge Manual 
Training School, but many more applied for permission to take the 
course than could be accommodated. 

A Professorship of Architecture would be a valuable addition to 
the School and its courses of instruction. A considerable number of 
persons annually present themselves wishing to take a special course 
in Architecture and Designing, which the School is unable to supply. 
Respectfully submitted. 

For the Committee : 

Presented September 24, 1890. 



The condition of Athletic Sports as they exist at Cambridge to-day 
can best be learned from a brief statement of what the Athletic Com- 
mittee has accomplished ; and in order better to appreciate the diffi- 
culties with which it had to contend at the start, it is necessary to 
understand the attitude of the great body of undergraduates towards 
what seemed to them to be unnecessaiy "Faculty interference." 
They had felt very keenly the difference between the restrictions 
which were put upon them and the entire absence of any similar re- 
strictions at Yale, where the Faculty had said to the undergraduates 
practically this : "We do not propose to assume any control of your 
athletic sports, or the way in which you conduct them, so long as 
they do not interfere with the college curriculum. The responsibility 
is with you." At Yale the undergraduates and graduates combined 
and years ago brought about a degree of organization which we are 
but just approaching. At Cambridge, on the other hand, the under- 
graduates found very few restrictions or regulations for their behavior 
outside of the class-room except in the matter of their athletic sports, 
in which one of the most important rules was at one time that 
they should not play with professionals for fear of contamination. 
The result was that they felt very little responsibility and regarded 
the Faculty as the natural enemy of athletics. The whole tone, 
especially of base-ball and foot-ball, had degenerated. 

The Athletic Committee, as at present constituted, has been in ex- 
istence for three years, and the work of organization has been pro- 
gressing so rapidly, and the changes have been following each other 
so quickly, that this Committee has hoped each year to be able to 
report a permanent and satisfactory settlement of all vexed questions. 

The first and most important part of the Athletic Committee's work 
seems now to have been practically accomplished. Order has been 
created by the graduate treasurer out of the chaos which existed a 
few years ago, and it is hoped that further economies will be brought 

A set of rules has been framed and put in force, so well regulating 
the eligibility of members of the different teams, and so effective in 


doing away with the professionalism which obtained in all the col- 
leges a few years ago, that the athletic authorities of both Yale and 
Princeton have openly commended them and to a great extent have 
adopted similar regulations. 

Last and most important of all, a spirit of fair play and a more 
united interest has been revived at Harvard, largely owing to the 
tactful handling of the Athletic Committee. It is a pleasure to be 
able to say that Harvard has been among the first, if not the first, to 
come to a realizing sense of the dangers that threatened all inter- 
collegiate sport and manfully to set about to correct the abuses in 
spite of a great deal of odium and unjust criticism. This is progress ; 
these are triumphs which in the opinion of your Committee are of far 
greater importance than the ability to win every time at any cost, 
which is only too apt to be the aim at our inter-collegiate contests, 
only too aptly imitated in our preparatory schools. Unless all our 
games and contests can be governed by the unwritten rules of fair 
play and sportsmanlike behavior, the sooner we give them all up 
the better. There has undoubtedly been a great change for the 
better and very few appreciate, who have not been in the position to 
know something of the details, how much of the improvement is due 
to the indefatigable and disinterested work of the Athletic Committee. 
They have had many difficult and important decisions to make, and 
there has been great difference of opinion on many of the questions, 
but in most cases the opposition has been through lack of information, 
and it is with the hope of partly obviating this that the suggestion 
has been made to appoint one member of the Committee from beyond 
New England. 

Your Committee is unanimously of opinion that it is advisable to 
make such appointment. 

Taking well into consideration the good work which has been done 
by the Committee and the fact that without much doubt it was the 
best form of a Committee that could have been made at the time, it 
has now become a serious question whether as at present constituted 
it is the best permanent form of government for the College athletics. 

We quote at length from a report made to the Committee by a 
member of the Athletic Committee, Mr. William Hooper : 

' ' I will take as a starting point in my report the date of the forma- 
tion of the Athletic Committee as at present constituted, namely, 
October, 1888. I wish also to divide the subject into two parts, and 
speak on (1) those who indulge in sport as a pleasure and recreation, 
and (2) those who enter sport for the purpose of playing on one of 


the teams. It has been the constant aim of the Committee to offer 
such inducements as will persuade the students to exercise, and in 
this it has been fairly successful, but not as much so as it would have 
been had there been more room, both indoors and out. 

There have been more than two hundred men playing foot-ball in 
the autumn for the last two years, and in the spring about twenty 
nines, more or less carefully organized, have played base-ball. This 
number is in addition to those playing on the University and Fresh- 
man teams. The number of those playing lawn-tennis is hard to 
estimate, but I have been assured that one hundred and fifty courts 
would be used if they could be provided. 

Besides these there is, of course, a great number of men who play 
various games at odd times, which number cannot well be estimated ; 
but it is certainly very gratifying that so many students take some 
sort of physical exercise in the open air. 

Our greatest need at present is more room. This should be hap- 
pily remedied in the case of outdoor sports when the recent great gift 
of Mr. Higginson is put into shape for use, but if the students are 
confined to the Soldier's Field alone it will prove to be inadequate, 
and steps should be taken to have an area of the Longfellow Field 
equal to that of the present playgrounds ready for use when Jarvis, 
Holmes, and Norton Fields are used for other than athletic 

The gymnasium is overcrowded and the need of more room is self- 
evident. There are now in the building more than thirteen hundred 
lockers, while twelve years ago there were less than five hundred. 
The bathing facilities are far from adequate, and the addition of a 
swimming bath would supply a great need. 

The second division of our subject is more serious and more im- 
portant, as it is from this branch that Harvard's reputation in athlet- 
ics is made or marred. At the outset it is very important that we 
should bear in mind that to-day athletics at Cambridge are governed 
by a very high standard, and that the advance in this respect during 
the past four years has been most satisfactory. In a report upon 
athletics submitted by a Committee of the Faculty on June 12, 1888, 
we read, page 11, ' But it was also apparent that during recent years 
a strong and in every respect objectionable tendency had developed 
to break down the line between athletics practised for sport, social 
recreation, and health, and athletics practised in a competitive spirit, 
in emulation of professional athletes and players.' In my opinion 
the Committee could have gone further than this and said that nothing 
like true sport was possible under the existing conditions. But it is 
necessary to remember that the ' existing conditions ' were not com- 


mon to all the sports, and in every consideration of Harvard athletics 
we should be careful to separate base-ball and foot-ball from the other 
sports. It is from these that all the odium has come. In the absence 
of rules regulating the matter there can be no doubt that certain 
players gave more time to sport than the} T were justified in doing. 
The Faculty then interfered and made rules which the students con- 
sidered to be hostile to their athletics, and matters went from bad to 
worse with both sides more or less at fault. There were men playing 
both foot-ball and base-ball who should not have been permitted to 
play, but there was no rule among the students of the several colleges 
to prevent it. This should have been prohibited by a rule of the 
College authorities ; but here it was also missing and the evil took 
firm root. The desire to win had become so keen that everything 
was subordinated to this one idea and there was no thought of the 
future. In this respect there has been a great advance ; the whole 
tone of athletics has been raised ; the teams are properly composed 
of bona fide students and the play has become clean and fair. I 
have no hesitation in saying that if any of the methods that were in 
vogue six or seven years ago should now be attempted they would be 
frowned upon by a large majority of the men interested in athletics. 
I feel that the old tone has been in a great measure restored and 
that, if the students are only careful in their choice of advisers, the 
S3*stem will be safe for many } T ears. 

It may seem hazardous, when everything is apparently going well, 
to criticize the present arrangement ; but there is still room for 
improvement. With the shifting population at Cambridge it is very 
essential that there should be some permanent and steadying power ; 
and therefore some sort of oversight is necessar} 7 . I do not believe 
that to-day the undergraduates can alone and unaided successfully 
manage their athletics, and therefore some sort of a Committee is 
necessary. But it should be as small as possible. The present 
Committee is composed of nine members. Eealizing the difficulty 
of dealing with expert questions, it has instituted advisory boards of 
three graduates in each of the four great sports. We have also 
a graduate treasurer and the Director of the Gymnasium and his 
assistant, a total of twenty-four men who may be said to have the 
oversight of Harvard athletics, though it is true at the present time 
that some of these men fill more than one position. It is no wonder 
that the newcomer is bewildered and mystified by the complexity 
which he finds, and I think a great step would be taken in advance 
could the whole system be simplified. Among the various organiza- 
tions themselves there is need of consolidation, and I believe athletics 
would be much better managed were they all united under one head, 


and ruled by a governing board to be as small in numbers as 

What follows upon "The Sanitary Condition of Buildings" and 
"Physical Training" was written by Dr. Farnum, and has been 
accepted by the Committee and is submitted as their report on these 
subjects, together with recommendations. 

The Hemenway Gymnasium. — In the basement of this building 
there are about nine hundred lockers, which are ventilated immediately 
into the surrounding atmosphere. It is a custom with many of the 
students to wear their exercising clothes for long periods of time, in 
some cases through the entire term, without having them washed. 
These clothes hung in the lockers diffuse through the air of the whole 
Gymnasium the animal excretions with which they are soaked. It is 
to be presumed that some of the persons who make use of this build- 
ing do so with the intention of improving their health. That exercise 
in an atmosphere polluted with the waste products cast off by human 
beings is injurious to health can admit of no doubt. The continuance 
of such a condition of affairs merits prompt and severe condemnation. 
All the lockers should be removed from the Gymnasium, or, if that 
is impracticable, they should at least be ventilated by some one of 
the methods now in use, to insure as far as may be that those in the 
pursuit of health may not be injured by the very means which they 
suppose to be conducive to that end. Moreover, frequent washing 
of the exercising clothes should be enforced. Ampler facilities for 
bathing are also much needed in the Gymnasium. 

Your Committee recommend the adoption of the method of drying 
clothing now in successful operation at the Boston Athletic Club and 
believe that this can be done at no great expense to the College by 
making certain changes in the basement which will make available the 
space now used for bowling alleys and the base-ball cage. There would 
also be room for a bath. 

Memorial Hall. — The water-closets for the servants are in the 
basement, just under the dining hall and near the kitchen. They are 
dark, badly ventilated, and permeated with the odor of the African. 
The air from them must pass up into the dining hall and out into the 
culinary departments. Such an arrangement presents no features 
to recommend it from a sanitary point of view, and if known to 
those taking their meals in this building would be the reverse of 

These closets should be removed. 


Hollis and Stoughton Halls. — Neither of these buildings have 
water-closets. The inmates presumably use the water-closets in some 
other building. In a case of illness exposure in the air, especially at 
night, might prove injurious ; and the alternative, the use of a cham- 
ber utensil and the consequent retention of faecal matter for some 
time in the rooms, is very objectionable. Parts of the cellar floors 
of these two buildings are bare earth. All cellar floors should be 
covered with some impermeable covering to prevent the influx of 
ground air. 

These buildings should be provided with proper water-closets and the 
cellar floors paved or cemented. 

Double Windoivs. — Their use should not be encouraged, for the 
ventilation of the dormitories is defective enough without them. 
Some of the rooms so provided have been visited by a member of the 
Committee in the morning before the occupants were up, and their 
stench was almost unbearable by anyone coming from the outer air. 

Water-closets seem to have been put in the cellars almost invariably, 
the worst situation in the building from a sanitary point of view, for 
when it is heated by the various fires in the rooms, which are used 
the greater part of the college year, it becomes like a heated shaft 
causing an upward draught, which of course carries through the 
building all gases and volatile matters entering the lower parts. 

Handsomer halls than Hoi worthy have of late years been built, but 
so far as ventilation is concerned no advance has been made — rather 
the opposite. 

The care taken of the buildings seems on the whole to be satis- 
factory ; the only time when an undue amount of rubbish was found 
in the cellars was at the end of the term. It might be well to have 
the buildings inspected by some one familiar with sanitary subjects 
at irregular intervals. If the inspection was made at regular inter- 
vals, the janitor would soon find out when to expect it and everything 
would probably be found in good condition. 

Physical Training. — If by this expression the development of 
the muscular system is intended, this Committee has nothing to sug- 
gest that is not more appropriately considered under the head of 
Athletic Sports. The object of training for an athletic contest is to 
fit the athlete to make the greatest skilled muscular effort of which 
he is capable in a certain way for a certain time. It may be con- 
ducive to health, but that is not its primary object. 

Physical training, in a broad sense of the term, requires a knowl- 
edge of all means that improve and maintain health and of every 


influence injurious to it. There is a negative as well as a positive 
side, the preservation of health frequently depending more upon what 
is left undone than upon what is done. Such an understanding of 
the subject, which in the opinion of your Committee is the true one, 
makes it of too great extent to be dealt with in a report such as this. 
Some aspects of it may, however, be briefly considered. Muscular 
exercise at the present time absorbs a good deal of attention. It is 
an important part of physical training, but not the most important. 
Admitting once for all that a moderate amount of exercise in the 
open air is beneficial to health, the following remarks will relate to 
exercise taken within doors, as in a gymnasium. To obtain informa- 
tion on this point your Committee propounded the following questions, 
which were most courteously answered by Dr. Sargent, Director of 
the Gymnasium. 

Question 1. What proportion of those who have undergone a physical exam- 
ination present themselves for a subsequent examination? 
Answer 1. Fifty per cent. 

Question 2. What is the usual interval between the two examinations? 
Answer 2. Five months. 

Question 3. What proportion follow out the " special order of appropriate 
exercises" made out for them after the first examination? 
Answer 3. Not known. 

Question 4. What proportion of those presenting themselves for a second 
examination show improvement? 
Answer 4. All. 

5. What are the means for determining the effects of gymnastic 
exercise on health? 

Answer 5. Mainly the increased muscular development. 

If muscular development and health are synonymous terms then 
exercise, in the Gymnasium at any rate, appears to be a measure of 
the greatest value. Before this conclusion is accepted, however, it 
would be well for us to know the value of muscular development as 
an indication of health, and how that value is to be expressed. 
Measurements of the external parts of the body, and testing by 
various apparatus the contractile power of individual muscles and 
groups of muscles, have, owing to the numerical form used to express 
the results obtained, great attractions. But it must not be forgotten 
that health depends more on soundness of the internal organs than 
on the external muscular development. At present your Committee 
is not prepared to accept increased muscular development as a con- 
clusive evidence of improved health, but so far as muscular develop- 
ment is concerned the system now employed at the Gymnasium has 


our approval. We are also of the opinion that the methods of 
physical examination, in use there, are of no value as an indication of 
the health of the person examined. However this may be, there can 
be no doubt that the building in which exercise is taken should not 
present any condition injurious to the health of those using it. We 
are of the opinion that such a condition does exist in the Gymnasium, 
and would refer to the remarks made upon that building. Even 
leaving this out of consideration, it is doubtful if any apartment used 
by a large number of persons at the same time can be satisfactorily 
ventilated by natural means: "in temperate climates in certain 
buildings where sudden assemblages of people take place, mechanical 
ventilation must be used." (Dr. E. A. Parkes.) 

Before a course of exercise is laid out for anyone, a thorough physi- 
cal examination must be made by a person practically familiar with 
the signs and symptoms of both healthy and diseased conditions of 
the organism. And something more than this is needed. An expert 
may detect the evidence of existing disease, but in many cases physi- 
cal training is of the greatest importance before disease has reached 
the stage when it can be detected. Here the knowledge of the family 
physician is invaluable and no amount of acuteness in physical 
examination will ever be able to take its place. 

Take one illustration, that of Phthisis. This disease is estimated 
to be the cause of about one seventh of the total deaths of mankind. 
Out of 756,893 deaths in the United States in 1880, Phthisis was 
given as the cause of 91,270 (10th census of the United States). 
From the same authority it also appears that in every thousand deaths 
in the male sex from this disease 131 occurred between the ages of 
20 and 25 years. 

In proportion as men engage in indoor pursuits so does their death- 
rate from Phth,isis increase. When a phthisical family-history is 
known to exist, it is imperative that the exercise should be taken in 
the open air at all seasons. The value of this statement is evident 
in the case of a student whose time is mainly passed within doors in 
a sedentary pursuit and frequently in an atmosphere vitiated by the 
respiration of many persons. 

The persons whose physical training is under consideration have 
passed through most of the dangers specially incident to childhood, 
though few have reached the full development of manhood. They 
are at a period of life when the general mortality is at its lowest 
point, but when there is great danger of the acquisition of habits 
injurious to themselves and sources of degeneration and disease to 
their descendants. Chastity and temperance in the use of alcoholic 
liquors are of the utmost importance for the formation and maintain- 


ance of a sound bodily organization. While there is no good reason 
for thinking that students as a class are more addicted to evil courses 
than an equal number of men of the same ages in other pursuits, it is 
well to bear in mind that if, as has been advanced in some quarters, 
the race is degenerating, a large amount of that degeneration may 
with fairness be laid to alcoholism and syphilis. It is necessarily 
difficult to form an estimate of the amount of these two influences, 
but it is undoubtedly vast. "I estimated that in 1873, out of a 
population of 942,292 persons, 50,450 were suffering from syphilis in 
New York City. I believe this number to be under rather than over 
the true amount. This represents only the civil population. Syphilis 
is essentially a chronic disease, is liable to attack every tissue in the 
body, and its later manifestations often appear so long after the early 
symptoms as to cause its connection with many diseases to be over- 
looked. Thus, grave and deep-seated affections of the eye, serious 
lesions of the nervous system, and many maladies of the viscera 
depend upon this disease as their origin, — and yet are overlooked, 
either because the earlier syphilitic symptoms have escaped notice, or 
because the patient has been ignorant of their connection with syphi- 
lis. And yet these same diseases may be sufficient to incapacitate 
men from work, to blast their lives, and make them dependent upon 
the charity of friends or strangers without offering them the miser- 
able gratification of release by death." (Dr. F. R. Sturgis.) "It 
is strange and sad to remember that this malady, rivalled in its total 
capacity for wrecking happiness and health and life by no other, is 
equally formidable by reason of our limited power over it. Make 
what deductions you can for the mild or latent forms of the disease, 
recognize all our power of repression, and the fact remains that we 
have yet to find the means of arresting it, and, I may add, we have 
yet to find effective means for its prevention. One method, and one 
alone, is possible, is sure, and that one is open to all. It is the 
prevention and the safety that can be secured by unbroken chastity." 
(Dr. W. R. Growers.) By many persons Gonorrhoea is regarded as 
an affection of trivial nature and worth little consideration. But 
some physicians who have had a large experience with its treatment 
do not think so, for its many and frequent and serious complications, 
and the grave organic lesions of which it may be the starting point, 
can entail on its victims an amount of misery but slightly inferior to 
that occasioned by Syphilis itself. 

And now one glance at the companion picture: "The effects of 
intemperance are best exhibited by the mortality figures of innkeepers, 
including publicans and generally all dealers in the liquor trade, and 
of brewers. The mortality directly ascribed to alcoholism is, how- 



ever, a very imperfect measure of the intemperance prevailing, for 
there can be no doubt that the desire to spare the feelings of surviv- 
ing relatives practically limits the statement of this cause of disease 
to those cases where no disguise is possible. A better measure is the 
mortality from diseases of those organs which are known to be seri- 
ously affected by alcoholic excess, and which can be stated in certifi- 
cates of deaths to have been diseased without fear of offence." 
(Supplement to the 45th Annual Report of the Registrar General, 
London, 1885.) On this basis it appears that among persons having 
free access to liquor, the mortality — as compared with persons not 
so situated — is increased enormously in the following affections : 
Alcoholism, Liver Disease, Gout, Disease of the Nervous System, 
Suicide, Accident. 

Youth thinks that age exaggerates dangers, especially in cases 
where the penalty does not follow immediately the infringement of 
the law. Some of us may yet remember what our ideas were about 
such matters. Every influence that elevates the moral tone will con- 
duce to better health. The true physical training of the race is a 
mighty problem, not insoluble, we trust, by the efforts of those whose 
hearts are in the work. 

We recommend the appointment of an officer whose duties shall be 
as follows : — 

He shall have access to the record of the physical examination of the 
students. He shall keep such an account of the family -history as ivould 
be of value regarding any advice to be given on the preservation and 
improvement of health. A blank form shall be prepared of this account, 
to be filled in by the parent, or other person standing in loco parentis. 
It shall be held as a confidential communication and shall not be open 
to inspection by any person other than the officer. He shall also keep a 
record of absences from college duties due to illness, but not the nature 
of the illness. 

This officer must be a doctor of medicine; but he shall not, while 
holding this position, engage in the practice of his profession, nor shall 
he have any occupation that would in any way interfere with the dis- 
charge of the duties of his position. He shall from time to time give 
some brief lectures on sanitary matters, if such a proceeding shall be 
thought to serve any useful purpose. 

The students shall be entitled to consult him during certain stated 
hours on hygienic subjects, but he shall in no case attend any student in 
any illness, whatever its nature may be. 

He shall have supervision of the sanitary condition of all the build- 
ings, and shall perform such other duties as would properly come within 


the province of a medical officer of health. He shall from time to time 
make to the proper authorities reports on such matters as he shall think 
deserving of their attention. 



Presented January 13, 1892. 



June 23, 1890. 
To the Board of Overseers op Harvard College : — 

Gentlemen, — The Committee on Government submits the following 
report for the year 1889-90 : — 

Your Committee believes that the changes introduced into the dis- 
cipline of Harvard College at the instance of the Board of Overseers 
have done much good. Several members of the Committee have 
visited Cambridge, have examined the method of carrying out the 
new regulations, and have made inquiry into their practical workings* 
It is not to be expected that this method can be perfected in a year, 
but a great improvement in the discipline of the College is already 
reached. The reports of attendance at the several recitations and 
lectures, now usually made by monitors, are prompt and regular, 
whereas under the old system they were often delayed. There is 
good reason to believe that these reports are fairly accurate, and a 
greater degree of accuracy is hoped for and expected next year ; 
while under the old system the reports were sometimes practically 
valueless. A continuous residence in Cambridge on the part of the 
students, so important in every respect, has been generally secured. 

When the proposed regulations were under discussion a fear was 
expressed that the enforcement of stricter discipline would greatly 
annoy many of the best students. In fact, however, regular and 
punctual habits have been taught and encouraged without serious in- 
convenience to anyone. We believe that the moral training of its 
students is entirely within the province of the College. We believe 
that the College would gravely fail in its duty if it did not secure this 
training by every means in its power. However well adapted may 
be the system of the Continental universities to the circumstances in 
which they are placed, we believe that American opinion demands for 
American graduates training both intellectual and moral, rather than 
a mere opportunity to acquire learning. We rejoice, therefore, that 
the authorities of the College have devoted themselves to this training 
with renewed and increased energy. 

In the enforcement of discipline, much always depends upon the 
officer who administers it. The Assistant Secretary, Mr. Montague 
Chamberlain, whose duty it is to deal with most petty offences, seems 


to your Committee well qualified for this task, fair-minded and dis- 
criminating. The appointment of advisers to the freshmen is an ex- 
periment tried this year for the first time. It is a step in the right 
direction, and, as the advisers become more familiar with their duties, 
its advantages will be felt more strongly. These advisers should be 
appointed as early as possible in order that the students may consult 
them, if they so desire, before coming to Cambridge in the autumn. 
We hope that in time a similar supervision may be extended to the 
upper classes. 

Harvard College pays every year in scholarships and to beneficiaries 
over $46,000. This is exclusive of all prizes, of nearly $11,000 paid 
in fellowships, and of a certain additional sum paid to undergraduates 
for services rendered. It is necessary for the applicant to declare 
his pressing poverty as a condition of obtaining any part of this aid. 
A considerable proficiency in study is also required, but popular 
opinion both within and without the College regards a scholarship 
rather as a badge of respectable mendicancy than as the prize of 
brilliant achievement. Formerly the College concealed the names of 
those who held scholarships as if the possession of one were a thing 
to be ashamed of; in late years these names have been published, a 
change in every way to be commended. Something more should be 
done, however, and your Committee recommends that a few of these 
scholarships be thrown open to competitiou irrespective of the poverty 
of the candidate. If this is done, even though poverty be still a 
necessary qualification for most scholarships, yet the honor which 
will attach to some will be reflected on them all. 

Again, there are always young men who can get through College 
without pecuniary aid, though it is very inconvenient for them to do 
so. Such men apply or fail to apply for scholarships according to 
the temper of their minds rather than according to the length of their 
purses. We do not mean to sa} 7 that anj T of the present holders of 
scholarships are undeserving, — we believe that scholarships are now 
fairly sought and fairly awarded, — but it is clear that open scholar- 
ships will give an opportunity both to poor students and to poor 
parents who would be the better for help but who now feel that they 
can struggle along without it. 

Finally, open scholarships will act as an incentive to some students 
who do not need the money. In America, especially, there is danger 
in intimating to the sons of rich men that they ought not to contend 
for the prizes of life with the sons of the poor. To reinforce natural 
idleness by an appeal to generosity and to the conscience is highly 
undesirable. To say that young men ought to study for the love of 
learning, and for that alone, is to divorce the love of duty and the 


desire for honorable reward, — two things inseparably joined in human 

It is true that very few scholarships can, under the terms of the 
gift, be opened to general competition. There are a few, however, 
which are unrestricted, — quite enough for the purpose of an experi- 

In an appendix to this report is given a list of scholarships which 
may thus be thrown open to competition. Their combined annual 
value does not exceed six per cent of the total amount paid to bene- 
ficiaries and will not appreciably diminish the amount now received 
by poor and deserving young men, for experience shows that at least 
half of the open scholarships will be won by holders of scholarships 
under the present system. We are firmly of opinion that the payment 
of three or four per cent of the beneficiary fund to students not impe- 
cunious will increase the self-respect of all who receive aid and will 
stimulate study throughout the College. 

The Committee had intended to make special investigation into the 
character and needs of the special students in the College, hoping 
that some means might be found of bringing these very undesirable 
exceptions within the ordinary rules of the College. But the pro- 
posals to modify the whole plan of academic instruction now before 
the Board of Overseers are so far-reaching that we have thought best 
to postpone the inquiry. If the class system is to be remodelled, we 
earnestly hope that the number of these men, often mere camp- 
followers of the College, may be considerably reduced. 

We recommend the passage of the following vote : 

Voted, That in the opinion of the Board of Overseers some scholar- 
ships in the College should be opened to general competition without 
regard to the pecuniary circumstances of the applicants. 

For the Committee, 

Presented June 24, 1890. 



Three Bassett scholarships of $90 each, entirely free, except that 
one of the holders must be a senior, one a junior, and one a sophomore. 

One Gorham Thomas scholarship of $200, entirely free. 

One Toppan scholarship of $300, entirely free. 

One Savage scholarship of $300, entirely free. 

One Derby scholarship of $250, free, except that it may be claimed 
by Arthur Derby Draper, born 1874. 

One scholarship on the Morey foundation of $300, free, except that 
descendants of Rev. George Morey are entitled to preference. 

One Slade scholarship of $250. In this case the income is to be 
" used for the benefit of young men who have proved themselves 
worthy of aid by diligence and meritorious conduct during at least 
one year's residence at Harvard." In the opinion of the Committee 
this scholarship may be opened to competition, unless claimed by a 
son of the benefactor. 

The Farrar scholarship of $200. In this case the income and in- 
terest is to be applied lt toward the maintenance and support of one 
meritorious student." In the opinion of the Committee this scholar- 
ship may be opened to general competition. 

Two Pennoyer scholarships of $100 and $90 respectively. Here 
the scholars are to be educated, brought up and maintained in the 
College called Cambridge. These scholarships also are probably 

The Merrick scholarship, the scholarship of the Class of 1814, and 
the scholarship of the Class of 1841 are free, except that descendants 
of members of the Classes of 1870, 1814, and 1841 have the preference 
as applicants. It is probable that this condition will prevent the open- 
ing of these scholarships to competition. 


To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : — 

Gentleman, — The Committee to* visit the Divinity School beg 
leave to offer the following report : — 

The first thing to be said about the Divinity School is that it is 
manifestly taking its place as the most desirable seminary in the 
country for advanced courses in the various departments of sacred 
literature and clerical education. Of thirty-five students in the last 
3'ear's Catalogue no less than ten were graduates of other theological 
schools, and thus already preachers, some of them ordained ministers. 
In the forthcoming Catalogue of the present academic year will appear 
the names of eighteen graduates of other schools, three of them in the 
regular classes and fifteen enrolled as graduate students. 

We find every reason to be satisfied with the non-sectarian attitude 
of the School ; but we are solicitous that it should not be regarded as 
in any sense an attitude of indifference or of compromise. The sev- 
eral professors do not mask their own beliefs ; but in expressing 
them they feel bound to give a fair and full exposition of both sides 
of every important question, while from either side they rigidly elim- 
inate personal influence, party preferences, and the odium theologicum, 
so that the student is left as far as possible to his own unbiased 
judgment. The only deficiency in this method — and that one which 
can be and ought to be supplied — is that the students fail to obtain 
instruction concerning existing sects, their position with reference to 
dogmas and forms, the drift of thought within their respective ranks, 
in fine, the religious geography of the community. This, indeed, is 
not scientific knowledge ; but it holds no secondary place among the 
young minister's needs, especially as in our time sects lack stability 
of opinion and practice, and their formal creeds and constitutions do 
not sufficiently define their present position. 

In the Old Testament, its language, literature, and histoiy, and in 
allied branches of Semitic study, Professors Toy and Lyon are un- 
surpassed, if not unequalled, not onhy in their full equipment for their 
work, but equally in teaching power. They are giving new attraction 
to a department which has been losing its hold on the interest of the 
clerical profession, but which can be neglected or slighted by none 
who would be conversant with the birth and early history of Christi- 
anity or with the interpretation of the Christian Scriptures. The 


Hebrew language is so taught here as to render it hardly needful, 
were it desirable, to make it a required stud}'. Few students will 
willingly dispense with it, and we doubt whether any will fail to avail 
themselves of the historical courses of kindred value which the same 
professors offer. 

In the New Testament, Professor Thayer has like preeminence as 
a critical scholar. In the minute, thorough criticism of the New 
Testament his exercises are precisely adapted to the taste and need 
of such biblical scholars as the Christian Church ought to crave and 
to demand. This painstaking analysis of a portion of the sacred 
text is the best possible training for one who desires to become a 
skilled expositor of the Christian Scriptures. Your Committee would 
inquire whether, in addition to this course which they would not have 
less thorough, there might not be a course in which, with less atten- 
tion to verbal and grammatical niceties, a larger portion of the New 
Testament should be read in the original Greek. With this exception, 
if it be one, the entire range of Professor Thayer's courses covers all 
the ground that property belongs to his department, and implies on 
his part so much labor of the highest type, that it is only with extreme 
hesitation that we suggest any added burden. 

Professor Everett's courses on the Comparative History of Religion 
and on Systematic Theology, and his entire work and influence in the 
administration of the School, would claim for him like preeminence 
with that accorded to the professors already named, were it not that 
his department invites and includes a much larger number than theirs 
of men of kindred spirit, aim t learning, and ability. 

It is our misfortune that Professor Peabody cannot be duplicated ; 
but so onerous is his College charge that he can give himself only in 
part to the Divinity School. That part, however, is of great signifi- 
cance and worth. With the valuable aid of Rev. Edward Hale, he 
criticizes the sermons of the students, not only in their composition, 
but in their delivery as they are read before him in Appleton Chapel. 
He also gives such instruction as none can better give as to Pastoral 
Care and the Conduct of Christian Worship. His elective on the 
Practical Ethics of Social Reform, open to the entire University, is 
taken by many Divinity students, but of necessity it must be of 
general rather than special adaptation ; and it might be desirable that 
there should be a course of lectures on the relation of the clerical 
profession to social reforms, — a matter in which } 7 oung ministers in 
their frequent practical blunders show peculiar need of warning, in- 
struction, and guidance. 

In Church Hisfouy, during Professor Emerton's absence, the stu- 
dents have enjoyed the services of Professor Allen of the Episcopal 


Divinity School, who has in our School, as in his own, fully vindicated 
his title to a foremost place in his department. 

In Elocution, Mr. Kirby's services have been skilled, assiduous, 
and efficient. For the present academic year Professor Churchill of 
Andover has been secured as a teacher, and his ability and reputation 
as an elocutionist and his long and eminently successful experience in 
training candidates for the pulpit give ample assurance that his in- 
struction will be of signal and enduring value to the members of the 

In the absence of any scientific course of Ethics in the programme 
for the Divinity School, your Committee would suggest the expediency 
of making Professor Palmer's course on S3 T stematic Ethics one of the 
regular electives. If this be not done, it is recommended that the 
students be urgently advised to attend that course as an extra ; for 
next to the New Testament your Committee regard Ethics as the most 
important department of study for the Christian ministry. 

As regards the Library, your Committee cannot overestimate the 
worth of Rev. Mr. Morison's services as Librarian, and under his 
direction the work of cataloguing is in rapid progress, so that in this 
one particular the School will have the full benefit of a working 
library. But there is in the building little room for growth, and there 
is great need of a reading-room, especially as an entire class may often 
be using the same set of reference-books. The recitation-rooms in the 
building are inadequate to the requirements of the School and there 
are courses of instruction given elsewhere, which would more fitly 
belong within its premises were there room for them. 

All which is respectfully submitted. 

A. P. PEABODY, Chairman. 
Presented December 17, 1890. 



The Chairman of the Committee on the Semitic Languages begs 
leave in his own name to report the action of the Committee. 

On the 3d of December, 1889, the Committee held their first meet- 
ing, and invited Professors Toy and Lyon to confer with them as to 
the condition and needs of the department. The Professors regarded 
a collection of objects illustrative of the ground covered by their in- 
struction as specially desirable. It was accordingly determined to 
take measures for the establishment of a Semitic Museum. It was 
estimated that not less than $10,000 would be required for the hopeful 
initiation of such an enterprise. Mr. Jacob II . Schiff, a member of 
the Committee, offered at once to subscribe half that sum, and by 
letter shortly afterward doubled his subscription, thus placing the 
entire sum desired at the command of the department. His only 
condition was that the University should provide for the exhibition 
and protection of the objects to be purchased. For this purpose the 
Trustees of the Peabody Museum, at the instance of Professor Putnam, 
offered the temporary use of one of the galleries in the recent addition 
to the Museum. 

At a subsequent meeting of the Committee it was agreed that it 
was desirable that one of the professors should visit Europe during 
the summer vacation to make in part the requisite purchases, and to 
establish such connections as might render further purchases practi- 
cable by correspondence. Mr. Stephen Salisbury, of the Committee, 
furnished the funds necessary for this purpose, and Dr. Lyon under- 
took the service. 

At the third meeting of the Committee, on the 3d of the present 
month, Dr. Lyon presented a report of his doings, of which the fol- 
lowing synopsis is here given : — 

The first purchase for the Semitic Museum — March, 1890 — was a 
collection of S} 7 riac manuscripts and Cufic coins which the Rev. Dr. 
J. H. Shedd had brought from Oroomia. One of the manuscripts 
was a lectionary of the Gospels from the } T ear 1207. Another manu- 
script belonging to this collection, the so-called Gezza, from the year 
1666, was purchased and presented to the Semitic Museum by Mrs. 
Emily A. Burleigh of Cambridge. The missionaries at Oroomia are 
favorably situated for securing manuscripts of the ancient Syriac 


literature and it is hoped that we shall receive by this channel many 
originals or copies. 

The second purchase — March, 1890 — was a collection of Babylo- 
nian antiquities which had been sent over from London, embracing 
written tablets and fragments, seals and gems. In April, the Semitic 
Museum received from Mr. Schiff the gift of J. Reuchlin's treatise on 
the Rudiments of Hebrew, 1506, and a Hebrew Bible in three volumes 
with interlinear Latin translation. In May, Mr. E. S. Dixwell of 
Cambridge presented the entire set of the Journal of the American 
Oriental Society. 

In London Professor Lyon had the benefit of Mr. Schiff's presence 
and counsel, and during the whole summer he had frequent occasion 
to seek that counsel by correspondence. Most of the summer was 
spent in London, ten days each being given to Paris and Berlin in 

The first work in all these places was to learn what monuments 
were in the museums and which had been or might be reproduced in 
plaster. The museum authorities were uniformly kind and obliging, 
and special thanks are due to Messrs. Pinches and Budge of the 
British Museum, M. L6on Heuzey of the Louvre, and Professor A. 
Erman of the Berlin Museum. 

The most striking Semitic monuments in London are the Ass} r rian 
bas-reliefs recovered from the ruins by Sir Henry Layard, George 
Smith, and Hormuzd Rassam. Many of these were molded } r ears 
ago and casts of such are to be had. Many of the best, however, 
have never been molded, and there is now a regulation of the British 
Museum restricting very much the process of making new molds. In 
this state of affairs not all could be had which was desired, but a 
good selection was made, principally of the bas-reliefs of Assurna- 
zirpal, 884-860 b.c, and most of these have arrived. Casts of such 
clay tablets as have been molded were likewise ordered, as well as 
the impressions of one hundred of the best Babylonian-Assj^rian 
seals. Photographs maj 7 be taken of all objects and an estimate was 
given by a photographer for taking about fifty of the best bas-reliefs. 
Inasmuch as the chief cost is for the negatives, it is suggested that 
by cooperation of other institutions the proportionate cost may be 
much reduced. 

The second order in London, given in August, included all the 
Arabic, Hebrew, and Phoenician objects in the British Museum of 
which molds exist, and also the closely related inscriptions and reliefs 
from Persia. Several small Hittite inscriptions were included in the 
first order. A copy of a Hittite lion, the size of a large dog, was pre- 
sented to us by F. D. Mocatta, Esq., who placed us under obligation 
by other acts of kindness. From the East India House we get a copy 
of the great Nebuchadnezzar inscription. Four inscribed Babylonian 
building bricks were also purchased from private hands. 

At an auction on July 4th a dozen cuneiform tablets from Babylon 
were purchased. One of these is a legal decision of the time of the 
Jewish exile. A second is the record of the sale of real estate, and 
is a perfectly preserved case tablet covered with a duplicate account 
and seal impressions. 


Rev. Dr. Adler, Chief Rabbi in London, showed much kind interest 
in the Semitic Museum and gave to Professor Lyon useful suggestions 
and cards of introduction. 

Among the pleasures of the summer were opportunities of inter- 
views with the great explorers and decipherers, Sir Llenry Layard, 
Sir Henry Rawlinson, and Hormuzd Rassam, Esq. These gentle- 
men view our undertaking with warm approval and made valuable 

The establishment of connections with the Orient is very desirable, 
and special attention was directed to this end during the summer. 
Conversations were held with several persons living in the East, but 
no definite arrangements were entered into. 

At Paris the Louvre has of late years been greatly enriched by the 
diggings of M. de Sarzec at Telloh in Chaldea, and of M. Dieulafoy 
at Susa in ancient Persia. The Telloh monuments are among the 
finest yet found and can hardly be later than 2500 b.c. We shall 
have casts of several of these statues, so wonderfully chiseled and 
covered with inscriptions. From the palace of Darius we are to have 
casts of two archers in colored tiles. There will also be casts of many 
other objects, Assyrian, Babylonian, Phoenician, Arabic, Hebrew, 
and Moabite, the celebrated Mesha stone being among the last- 
named, giving an account of the wars of Moab and Israel in the 9th 
century b.c. 

M. Leon Heuzey, Director of the Louvre, was most obliging and 
considerate, granting casts of many objects never molded before. In 
such cases, however, there is a condition that the purchaser of the 
cast shall also bear the expense of making the mold. There are in 
the Louvre other objects of which casts ought to have a place in the 
Semitic Museum, but they were not applied for because they are too 
high for the room which we have for exhibition purposes. From 
Mainz a few casts were ordered of small Babylonian objects the 
originals of which are in the Louvre. To the Bibliotheque Nation ale 
we are indebted for a copj T of the famous Boundary stone from 
Babylon, containing a long inscription and known as the Caillou de 
Michaux. Its date is about 1100 b.c. 

The Berlin Museum has been likewise enriched of late, both b} T ex- 
cavation in the Orient and b} T purchase. By purchase the el Amaru a 
cuneiform tablets were acquired. These were written to Egyptian 
pharaohs about 1500 b.c. and were found in Egypt in 1887. Exca- 
vation has yielded some fine Hittite reliefs and a magnificent monu- 
ment of Esarhaddon, king of Assyria, 681-6GN B.C. Many of the 
new acquisitions may not yet be molded, because some questions are 
still pending relating to the ownership. The Esarhaddon monument 
ought to be ordered so soon as it may be had, although it is too high 
for our present room. 

On one condition it is possible to obtain casts of these objects, 
viz., that they shall not be exhibited nor their contents published in 
anticipation of the publication planned by the Berlin Museum. A 
long Aramaic inscription of the 8th century b.c, and a monument of 
Sargon (722-705 b.c) coming from the island of Cyprus, are among 
the chief objects of interest ordered in Berlin. 


The report records meeting in Berlin gentlemen who have traveled 
extensively in the East, and of having correspondence in regard to 
the possible purchase of Arabic stones and Hebrew books. From 
Leiden were ordered casts of several Phoenician inscriptions. 

On Professor Lyon's return to London in August, Mr. Isidore 
Spielman, Honorary Secretary to the Anglo- Jewish Exhibition in 1887, 
was helpful in various ways and presented to the Semitic Museum 
the catalogue and three other volumes relating to the exhibition. 

Two small collections of Hebrew and Arabic manuscripts were 
purchased, in connection with which the Rev. Dr. Ginsburg and Dr. 
Heinrich Hoerning cheerfully rendered most valuable assistance. 

About eight hundred photohraphs were bought representing Semitic 
scenery, ruins, buildings, and costumes in Palestine, S3 7 ria, Arabia, 
Egypt, and Spain. 

With the consent of the Trustees of the Palestine Exploration 
Fund, Mr. W. F. Petrie, whose diggings at Lachish were so success- 
ful last winter, presented to us casts of squeezes of two of the most 
interesting objects found in the diggings. Mr. Petrie's success at 
Lachish illustrates how fruitful a field for archaeology Palestine may 
yet become. 

F. W. Madden, Esq., of Brighton, the great authority on Jewish 
coins, has sent us some casts of coins. The British Museum has 
perhaps a thousand coins of which we should have electroplated 
copies. To Dr. Poole, the Keeper, and to Drs. Head and Grueber, 
the Assistant Keepers, the report acknowledges indebtedness for 
valuable suggestions. We have from Mr. Robert N. Toppan of 
Cambridge the promise of a Jewish shekel and half-shekel. 

Several other objects have also been received at home by gift or by 
purchase. Rev. Dr. Thomas Laurie of Providence has given us a 
Syriac manuscript of the Psalms and several small Arabic works. 
Mr. I. N. P. Stokes of the College has made a gift of $25. From 
the University of Pennsylvania we have purchased a cast of the Greek 
inscription from the Temple of Herod. From the same source we 
shall receive copies of one hundred Babylonian- Assyrian cylinder seals. 

From Palestine much may be had illustrative of Semitic life and 
history, while the purchase of manuscripts will be a perennial source 
of enrichment of the Museum. It is also hoped that independent 
explorations may be undertaken. 

The cases are now being made for the Semitic room in the Peabody 
Museu ii, and they are promised by Christmas. It seems, therefore, 
probable that early in the new year we shall be able to place what we 
have received on exhibition. 

The amount already expended is nearly half of Mr. Scruff's dona- 
tion. Other valuable objects are attainable, and some are contracted 
for, which cannot be placed on exhibition at present for lack of room, 
the space now available being but sixty-one feet square and the ceil- 
ing being too low for some of the larger casts. 

The growth of the Semitic department is among the striking phe- 
nomena in the recent history of the University. It consisted, a short 


time ago, of half a score of divinity students who reluctantly took a 
few elementary lessons in Hebrew, in accordance with a tradition fast 
dying out that a minister ought to know something of the languages 
in which the Scriptures were written. Now there are sixty-five stu- 
dents in the department, and they weigh much more than they num- 
ber, a large proportion of them being among the foremost men in the 
College and in the graduate classes. The change is due undoubtedly, 
in part, to the interest awakened by explorations on Semitic ground, 
but in chief part, to the unsurpassed learning, ability, and teaching 
power of Professors Toy and Lyon, who know how to connect faith- 
ful instruction in the rudiments of an unfamiliar language with what- 
ever can give that language an important place in philolog} T , archae- 
ology, and history. Four prizes have been offered in this department 
for the current year, and it is believed that, while more advanced 
study may be its own sufficient reward, such prizes will have a stimu- 
lating influence on beginners, especially in the elementary Hebrew 
course. A resident or travelling fellowship, assigned to this depart- 
ment exclusively, would be of peculiar value as affording the means 
of replenishing advanced scholarship, and thus training men who shall 
render good service as teachers or shall perform original work of a 
kind which, even though of inestimable worth, can command no pe- 
cuniary recompense. 

The courses of the last year were two in Hebrew, two in Aramaic, 
two in Assyrian, two in Arabic, one in JEthiopic, and one in General 
Semitic Grammar for those already acquainted with at least three 
Semitic languages. There have also been courses in Babylonian- 
Assyrian History, the History of Israel, the History of the Hebrew 
Religion, and the History of the Spanish Califate, — two of them 
full courses and the other two half-courses. The undergraduates 
have access also to Professor Toy's lectures, constituting an Intro- 
duction to the Old Testament, specialty designed for the Divinity 

Lectures open to a larger public are a part of the plan of the de- 
partment. During the last academic year Professor Toy delivered a 
course on Semitic Contributions to Civilization, and Professor Lyon, 
one on Cuneiform Inscriptions and the Old Testament. 

The Semitic Seminary, or Conference, as it is now called, is a vol- 
untary association of students present and past in the department 
and other Cambridge gentlemen interested in it. The meetings are 
held twice a month, for the presentation of the results of individual 
study and research and for the discussion of subjects belonging to 
advanced Semitic scholarship. 

It will be seen from this summary that the Semitic work holds a 


prominent place in our University programme. There is no depart- 
ment which has more accomplished teachers, more zealous students, 
or a more thoroughly organized system of instruction. But the 
arrangements for its accommodation are adapted to its condition 
twenty years ago, and not to its present requirements. It has virtu- 
ally no room at its command. Some of the exercises are held in the 
Divinity Library, in which the limited number of apartments pre- 
cludes a free choice of hours. The only other room that can be occu- 
pied by the department — and that not exclusively its own — is one 
in Sever Hall, adjacent to the lecture-room and used as an ante-room 
to it, so that none of the apparatus of instruction can be kept there. 
Even more than lecture-rooms of its own, the department needs a 
library with suitable accommodations for study. The books used in 
some of the courses are costly, some of them rare, and if one student 
keeps such a book in his room, his fellow-students may be in urgent 
need of it without being able to get access to it. In a working 
library the students might not only have free use of needed books, 
but opportunities which would often occur for joint study and research 
and for mutual aid. Mr. Schiff has offered funds for the purchase of 
such books as might be desirable at the outset for such a library, if a 
proper room can be assigned for the purpose. 

When it is considered that the funds in hand for the Museum can- 
not be put fully to use, while opportunities for the purchase of valu- 
able objects may be lost by dela} T , may it not be hoped that measures 
will be promptly taken for at least a temporary supply of the desired 
room ? What is needed and is fairly due to a department which can 
lose none of its interest or importance by the lapse of years, is a 
building appropriate to its uses, with a hall for the Museum, a libraiy 
that shall also be a study and reading room for the members of the 
classes, and two or more commodious lecture-rooms. 

All which is respectfully submitted. 


Chairman of the Committee. 
Presented December 17, 1890. 




December 19, 1890. 
To the Board of Overseers : — 

Gentlemen, — No changes of importance are noted in the arrange- 
ment of plants in the houses or in the beds, except so far as these 
have followed a carrying out of the recommendations of the Com- 
mittee last year. 

The number of species under cultivation has been diminished, and 
the plants are now available better than ever before for the large 
classes in Botany. The Committee note that a large part of the 
material used by the elementary class is raised at the greenhouses 
of the Bussey Institution. The arrangement by which this is secured 
appears to be advantageous for the College and for the Bussey 

The beautiful set of glass models is being continued by the artists 
in Germany. 

Extensive repairs have been necessary in the houses occupied by 
Mrs. Gra} r and by the Head Gardener. 

The Museum and laboratories are nearly completed. Owing to 
the excellent judgment of Mr. Agassiz in making contracts, the 
estimates have not been exceeded. 

Professor Goodale called the attention of the Committee to the 
absolute necessity for providing for the Herbarium by securing an 
assistant for Mr. Watson. The income of the Herbarium is not 
sufficient to pay for even its ordinary running expenses, and this 
makes it impossible to carry on the work to advantage. Mr. Watson 
has made a statement to the Committee, by which it appears that the 
sum of $4000 annually should be added to the present income. Your 
Committee recommend that this sum be raised for a short term, say 
of five years, and meanwhile an attempt may be made to secure a 
foundation worthy of the reputation of the organizer of the Her- 
barium, Professor Asa Gray. Of the sum above referred to, there 
has been already subscribed the amount of $35f)0 for five years, and 
$250 for one 3 r ear. 

Professor Allen and Mr. Kidder have made it clear to the Com- 
mittee that if the department of Systematic Botany at Harvard is to 
retain its present position in our country, a strenuous effort must be 


made to relieve Mr. Watson from a part of his routine work, and 
leave him free to carry on the work begun and prosecuted by Pro- 
fessor Gray, namely the Synoptical Flora of North America. The 
Library of the Herbarium can also be provided for from the sum 
spoken of by Mr. Watson, and the efficiency of the establishment 
increased in every way. 

Professor Goodale left in September for a voyage round the world, 
a refreshment very much needed by him. 

For the Committee, 

HENRY LEE, Chairman. 
Presented March 25, 1801. 



May 6, 1891. 
To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : — 

Gentlemen, — As members of the Committee appointed to visit 
the Jefferson Plrysical Laboratory, we are pleased to attest our satis- 
faction with the conduct of the Laboratory during the current aca- 
demic year. The zealous labors of the Director and his associates 
have covered an extended series of original investigations, in addition 
to the routine work of class instruction. 

The fruit already borne by a recent small endowment, strongly con- 
firms our belief that a suitable income would at once place the Jeffer- 
son Physical Laboratory in the front rank as a centre of physical 






Presented May 27, 1891. 


June 1, 1891. 

To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : — 

Gentlemen, — The Committee appointed to visit the department of 

Music has the honor to report this : 

That it is desirable to give the classes a different recitation-room, 

if possible, and one in a quieter place, free from the noises of Harvard 

Square. Your Committee makes this suggestion just now especially, 

because it is understood that the old Law School building is to be 





Presented June 10, 1891. 



21 October 1891. 
To the Board op Overseers of Harvard College : — 

Gentlemen, — The Committee appointed to visit the Veterinary 
School for the year 1891 respectfully reports as follows : — 

The last two reports of the Visiting Committees of the School, 
namely, the report made by Dr. Hodges in 1889 and the report made 
by Col. Russell in 1890, agree in the statement that the prosperity of 
the School is limited and in danger from lack of suitable financial 
support. As is very succinctly and forcibly stated in the report of 
Dr. Hodges in 1889, the University is engaged in an attempt to carry 
on almost entirely with its own earnings a high-grade school requiring 
a residence of three years of nine months each in direct competition 
with schools of low grade requiring only a residence of two years of 
four or five months each. 

That the School needs greater financial support seems to the Com- 
mittee of the present }?ear to be beyond dispute, but another and a 
more immediately vital phase of the question now presents itself. In 
1883 the Harvard Veterinary Hospital was opened on Village Street 
with ten stalls, and the Harvard Veterinary School was established, 
having its accommodations at the Bussey Farm. The Hospital was 
soon found to be too small, and eleven stalls were put in on the second 
story. It was then found that the location of the School at the 
Bussey Farm was inconvenient, and in 1884 the University bought a 
piece of land adjoining the Hospital on Village Street and erected 
thereon a building containing ten additional stalls, class-rooms and a 

From the beginning to the present time the average number of 
students has been about twenty, and thus far this child of the College 
has been given to understand that the maternal purse is not to be 
drawn upon for its support and that it must earn its own living. It 
has been engaged in a remarkably successful endeavor to that end. 

Of the wisdom or the necessity of this course in the past your Com- 
mittee expresses no opinion. We assume that it was well-advised. 
On entering upon our duties this year and upon examination of the 
Hospital and School and upon inquiry, we find, however, a condition 


of affairs which we believe demands your consideration with a view to 
the definition of a policy to be pursued hereafter. 

The Hospital is not on a main thoroughfare. It is immediately 
surrounded by dwelling-houses. The limit of accommodations in the 
Hospital has already been reached. The students are dependent 
upon the Hospital for their clinical instruction. There is no other 
place to which they could go if they would. The success of the 
School is largely dependent upon the amount and variety of clinical 
instruction furnished. This department has reached, we believe, as 
great a degree of success as is likely to be attained with its present 
accommodations. Unless these are improved we should not expect 
that the School would maintain a healthy growth or that it would be 
likely to attain higher standards than have already been reached. 
The present status of the School is, we believe, as good as, if not 
better than, was to be expected, considering the accommodations 
furnished and the conditions under which it has been operated. 

Moreover, inasmuch as when a school ceases to go on and up it is 
in danger of declining relatively to other institutions, we feel that 
some better opening for progress and growth is desirable, if not 
necessary, for the prosperity of the School. 

The Hospital part of the building does not belong to Harvard Col- 
lege, but is leased to the Corporation, and the Corporation is now a 
tenant at will. The owner is willing to make a new lease, as we are 
informed, with a rental equal to six per cent on the cost, or $1280 
per year, the lessee paying taxes. 

One of the first questions which presented itself to y our Committee 
was whether it was expedient that the College should take a new 
lease of the portion now devoted to the Hospital, and if so, for how 
long a period? 

The College has practically built an addition to a building belong- 
ing to others. The value of this addition depends upon the good- 
will, the generosity of the owner of the Hospital. The interests of 
the owner of the Hospital and of the College are, to be sure, at the 
present time to a certain degree mutual, but if the College makes in 
that location any further expenditure for land or buildings, it will 
have more to lose, and there will be a greater chance of loss, because 
the Corporation will be the more helpless whenever a renewal of the 
lease is desired. 

It seems plain that the College should not take a long lease of the 
Hospital premises, nor indulge in any expenditure for additional land 
or buildings adjoining its present quarters, without first obtaining 
from the owner of the Hospital an option to purchase at any time on 
reasonable terms. 


It seems further to your Committee that it is unwise to take action 
looking to growth in the present location. One or two houses can 
now be obtained, it is said, at a cost of about four dollars per square 
foot, but there is no assurance that other estates could thereafter be 
purchased if desired, and it is obvious that every additional invest- 
ment by the College will increase real estate values in that vicinity, 
and place the Corporation more absolutely at the mercy of the owners 
of the surrounding land. 

For the foregoing reasons your Committee believe that the invest- 
ment of the College on Village Street should not be increased, but 
that steps should forthwith be taken toward securing another location 
where the conditions would be favorable to growth. 

We believe there is a wide and important field of usefulness for 
this School and Hospital. There are many hospitals for human beings. 
There are in this state no adequate hospitals for animals. Some of 
the greatest discoveries in medical science have been reached through 
the treatment of the diseases of animals. The Hospital in the seven 
years of its existence has paid $16,800 for the support of the Veteri- 
nary School. Were the accommodations furnished, it would undoubt- 
edly grow to many times its present size. Harvard University ought 
to have a Veterinary School and Hospital whose character and accom- 
modations and work should be on a scale more nearly commensurate 
with the field of operations which they purport to cover. 

Impressed with the foregoing views this Committee requested that 
a committee should be appointed by the Corporation to confer with 
them. At the conference the views of the Visiting Committee were 
laid before the members of the Committee of Three appointed by the 
Corporation, and the members of the Visiting Committee expressed 
their willingness to aid the Corporation in selecting a site, and did in 
fact suggest one or two sites which they deemed to be eligible, and 
also expressed their willingness to aid in securing such donations as 
might be necessary to justify the purchase of an adequate piece of 
land and the erection of suitable buildings thereon. 

These suggestions and proffers of assistance met with no expression 
of approval from the majority of the Committee of the Corporation, 
who spent much time in impressing upon the Visiting Committee the 
various financial disabilities of the University. 

No satisfaction was expressed that the Visiting Committee had 
taken an interest in the School, nor was there any intimation of desire 
that such interest should be continued. 

It may not have been the intention of the Committee of the Corpo- 
ration to discountenance or discourage activity on the part of the 
members of the Visiting Committee, but since that meeting they have 


felt that it was not desired that they should take any action looking 
to a change of location of the School or the enlargement of its ac- 

It is believed that a Visiting Committee, if cordially supported in 
its efforts by the Board of Overseers and by the Corporation, might 
materially assist in placing the School and Hospital upon a more suit- 
able financial foundation. 

Respectfully submitted, 




Presented November 18, 1891, 

The Committee on Reports and Resolutions return herewith the 
report of the Committee to Visit the Veterinary School, of October 
21st, 1891. 

At the suggestion of the Visiting Committee a meeting was 
arranged between that Committee and the Committee on Reports and 
Resolutions. The Visiting Committee intimated a desire, before pro- 
ceeding further, to receive an expression of the views of the Overseers 
on certain points. While desirous of doing whatever might be in 
their power to strengthen the position of the Veterinary School, the 
Visiting Committee was unwilling to take further or more active steps 
towards that end unless its members felt assured that in taking such 
steps they were proceeding in full harmony with the polic}' and in- 
terests of the University. 

So far as your Committee is competent to form an opinion, it would 
appear that an endowment fund of not less than $250,000 will ulti- 
mately be found necessary to place the Veterinary School and Hospital 
on a satisfactory basis. The institution at present has no endowment 

The Visiting Committee appears to have been most faithful in the 
performance of its functions, and its members expressed an earnest 
desire to do individually and collectively whatever could judiciously 
be done to foster and develop the School and Hospital, and to obtain 
money for it. 


It is a noticeable fact that, in Massachusetts, and in the more im- 
mediate vicinity of Boston, where there are so many endowed institu- 
tions for every possible purpose, — charitable, medical, and surgical, 
— connected with the human kind, no institution of a similar char- 
acter should exist intended to care for animals. Such a want is not 
likely to be permanent, inasmuch as some such institution is obviously 
called for on every ground, whether of humanity or economical. 
While the gift from one or several sources of the whole amount 
named would be a great public benefaction, it would be a consider- 
able point gained could a sum of $50,000 now be obtained to secure 
the ownership of a permanent site for the Hospital and so avoid 
the objection referred to in the report of the Visiting Committee 
of placing the institution in the future through present improve- 
ments at the mercy of the holders of real estate which it does not 
control ; and if the Visiting Committee could bring this result 
about it should receive all possible encouragement and aid in so 
doing : but anything less than this which it might fairly be hoped 
could now be obtained in the way of gift or subscription would, in the 
judgment of your Committee, probably cost the University more than 
it would be worth to the Hospital and School. Unless, therefore, the 
members of the Visiting Committee see opportunities to secure from 
sources known to them some considerable sums adequate to the im- 
mediate purchase of a site and which may serve as the basis at least 
of an ultimately sufficient endowment, it would seem to your Com- 
mittee better that matters should be allowed to rest as they are in the 
hope that some individual of large means, interested in benefactions 
of this class, — and possibly stimulated thereto by members of the 
Visiting Committee, — will presently by gift or bequest endow the 
institution in the necessary amount. Judging by the experience of 
the past, it may fairly be hoped that this will come to pass in due 
course of time. 

Under these circumstances, your Committee would recommend that 
the report herewith returned be printed in the regular series, and that 
a copy of the present report be forwarded to the Committee to Visit 
the Veterinary School for its information. 

All of which is respectfully submitted. 

By order of the Committee, 

CHARLES F. ADAMS, Chairman. 



April 13, 1892. 
To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : — 

Gentlemen, — Your Committee on Spanish beg leave to report 
that one member of the Committee, Mr. Joseph R. Coolidge, having 
resigned on account of absence in Europe, Mr. Stephen Salisbury 
was appointed to fill the vacancy. 

Several conferences have been held with Professor B. H. Nash and 
Asst. Professor Marsh of this department, the Committee believing 
that to be a better way of getting information in regard to the 
instruction than merely attending recitations. The zeal and efficiency 
of Professor Nash, who is in charge of the department, seem to be 
somewhat hampered by his inability to do justice single-handed to 
the large number of students taking the courses in Spanish ; there 
were this year 127. Fortunately Asst. Professor Marsh, of the 
department of Comparative Literature, could come this } T ear to Pro- 
fessor Nash's aid, otherwise he would have been unable to carry on 
his department. It would seem desirable that some permanent and 
less fortuitous relief should be provided for. Another difficult}' with 
which the department apparently has to struggle is that of inadequate 
accommodation. This makes it impossible to hold the required 
" snap" examinations through the }'ear in an effective wa} T , and con- 
sequently they are not held at all. This, in turn, probably increases 
the proportion of students who take Spanish as a "soft" (easy) 
elective ; what that proportion is it is, of course, difficult to deter- 
mine, but it probably is considerable. 

A very crying need of the Spanish department is a working libraiy, 
such as other departments — and notably the French — already have. 
The nucleus, at least, of such a library cannot be obtained too soon 
if efficient work is to be expected. If there is to be a library, there 
should also be a place to put it in. And this leads your Committee 
to suggest the grouping together of the libraries for the departments 
of languages — such as the French, German, Spanish, Italian, &c. 
Certainly this would seem not only desirable but essential, if the 
intention of the College be to give anything more than the most ele- 
mentary instruction in modern languages ; to give any attention to 
the philosophy of languages, or to anything in the nature of com- 
parative literature. Such a juxtaposition of these working libraries 


could not fail to be of mutual advantage to all the departments — to 
the French and German as well as to the Spanish and Italian. It is 
very clear that the Spanish and Italian departments should not be 

A certain proportion of those who take Spanish do so simply as 
part of the stud} 7 of general literature, but there are others who take 
it with a distinct view of fitting themselves for their future careers 
as engineers, mining superintendents, merchants, &c, in Spanish- 
American countries. With the development of our relations with 
Mexico, the West Indies, and the South American Republics this 
number is likely to increase. It, therefore, seems to your Committee 
that the Spanish department should be regarded as one of very con- 
siderable possible importance, as furnishing opportunities for more 
than a "soft" course, for more even than a pleasing indulgence in 
modern Spanish literature, and that it should be administered by the 
College authorities with as much fostering liberality as circumstances 
will permit. 





April 13, 1892. 

To the Board of Overseers of Harvard University : — 

The Committee on Indo-Iranian Languages beg leave to offer the 
following report : — 

The worth of this department is to be measured, not by the num- 
ber of its pupils, but by the importance of its work. It would deserve 
liberal support, though it produced but a single Sanscrit scholar a 
year ; for that one scholar is more likely than not to bring to our 
knowledge in the far west much of the treasured wealth of Oriental 
myth, poetry, and tradition, or else to levy on the mother tongue 
precious contributions to classic philology. An elective in Latin, 
History, or Philosophy may be taken without any ulterior pur- 
pose. No student takes Sanscrit without meaning to use it, or per- 
severes in it without the capacity of using it for some valuable end. 

But it should be the object of a university in all its departments, 
not only to educate its pupils, but to diffuse knowledge and to mul- 
tiply the means of knowledge. Publication is one of its appropriate 
functions, and that especially, as to books which, while of great in- 
trinsic value, can have but a limited circulation. In the Indo-Iranian 
department it is to be hoped that a publishing fund may be established. 
Its income could not be misapplied while Professor Lanman remains 
in office, and when, long hence we hope, he shall have a successor, it 
is hardly possible that his place should not be filled by a man of like 
claims to confidence. In furnishing an essential text-book he has 
already drawn on his own resources. A member of your Committee 
has prepared for publication, and printed at his own cost, a volume 
which will be welcome to Sanscrit scholars on both continents, and 
he has another volume in press. He is thus expending in advance, 
with no intention of having it refunded, the estimated income of fif- 
teen thousand dollars, which your Committee would regard as the 
limit of their expectation, if not of their desire. 

The last year's Committee on the Indo-Iranian Languages, in their 
annual report, spoke of the expediency of establishing a system of 
publication in the name and under the charge of the University. 
Your present Commitee would suggest the possibility and expediency 


of some definite arrangement for this purpose. The University has a 
right to the reputation of its officers. Yet no year passes when some 
of them do not issue works, either of special timeliness or of per- 
manent value, which pass into the book-market without drawing the 
attention of the public to their source. The Johns Hopkins Univer- 
sity wins merited fame by its imprimatur on all that proceeds from 
its teachers and its resident graduates. Were the same policy pur- 
sued by Harvard College, its world-wide reputation as a seat of learn- 
ing would be perpetually echoed and enhanced by the contributions 
of its eminent officials. Not to speak of the living, or of any but the 
recent dead, would it not have been greatly to the honor of the Uni- 
versity, had the works of Peirce, Gra} T , and Bowen in their several 
departments borne and retained its imprint? 

We would not recommend the use in this behalf of the general 
funds which, we know, can bear no additional drain. But there are 
already in existence or in certain prospect publication-funds for 
special departments, which, were the College to establish a suitable 
agency, would be rapidly increased and multiplied. The Library 
would be the proper seat of such an agency, and we would suggest 
that the requisite work might be performed by a member of the 
library staff. 

Such books as would naturally have an extensive sale might be put 
into the hands of substantial publishing firms, whose names might 
appear in the title-page along with the University, and it is believed 
that such books would be largely helped in their circulation by the 
double imprint, while the agency could always secure better terms for 
the author than he would be likely to negotiate in his own person. 
As for the class of publications that necessarily have only a limited 
demand from public institutions, advanced scholars, and scientific 
men, the publication by the University would cheapen them for the 
purchasers by saving the commissions of middle-men, would secure 
ample notice of their issue, and would enable those who wanted them 
to know where and how to obtain them. With reference to books of 
this class, for which the demand is small and yet may be continuous for 
a series of years, as in the very department which we represent, the 
library agency would offer still other and greater advantages. Take, 
for instance, the volume just issued and that now in press to which 
we have referred. They are published by Ginn & Co., — a firm 
favorably known in this country and in England, probably not known 
in the university towns of Germany. The demand for these volumes, 
small as it is, may last for many years. The firm may cease to be, 
may change its name, or, retaining it, may alter its line of business, 
and of course its list of corresponding firms. At any rate it can have 


no motive for keeping Sanscrit books before the learned world by 
continuous or repeated advertisement. Still farther, it is no unpre- 
cedented thing for a firm, on its dissolution, to sell for melting-down 
the plates of valuable, but not marketable books. Now if such books 
are published by the University and stored in the Library, it is known 
where they can be had when they are called for, and the plates can 
be preserved for future reprint if needed. At the same time, in such 
a case it would be a wise economy to print very small editions of 
books of this class, and to make the issue of added copies contingent 
on the demand for them ; while, otherwise, needlessly large editions 
must be printed to meet demands barely possible, but not probable, 
and the extra capital thus invested, with a remote and doubtful 
chance of reimbursement, adds essentially to the price of the books. 

The proposed agency would be of service to the Library and to the 
University as a medium of exchange. Such periodicals as passed 
through its hands could be exchanged for those issued by other 
learned bodies ; while gift-copies of our publications in every depart- 
ment would secure return-copies from American and foreign institu- 
tions of learning. 

The Library Bulletin would be the best possible medium for adver- 
tising such books as are not designed for general circulation and use. 
It could give not only titles, but brief abstracts, — in fine, all the in- 
formation which an intending purchaser would need and crave. The 
Bulletin would have an added value as a record of the publications of 
the University, and would thus not merely lie for a while on its 
reader's table, but would be preserved and bound for reference. 
Meanwhile there would be an accumulation of ample materials for a 
descriptive catalogue of University publications. 

All which is respectfully submitted. 





April 13, 1892. 

To the Board of Overseers of Harvard University : — 

The work in this department was pursued during the academic year 
1890-91 with gratifying success by an increased number of students. 
An advanced course in Hebrew was attended by six ; there were six 
in Arabic, two of them in an advanced course ; and four entered on 
the study of the Phoenician. Of these last, one has made such pro- 
ficiency as to commence the preparation of a Phoenician vocabulary, 
which he intends to carry forward toward completion ; although, since 
he began, a similar work has appeared in Germany. In addition to 
these courses Professor Toy has given lectures on the History of the 
Hebrew Religion, on the History of pre-Christian Hebrew Literature, 
and on the Political and Literary History of the Bagdad Califate. 

Professor Lyon has had the direction of the elementary course in 
Hebrew, has had two courses in Assyrian, and has delivered courses 
of lectures on Babylonian -Assyrian History and on the History of 
Israel. This last course deserves special mention, as it in part sup- 
plies, in methods equally scholarly and attractive, the Biblical knowl- 
edge which before the time of Sunday-schools used to be acquired, 
though in simpler form, in Christian families, but which in the average 
student of the present time is entirely wanting. Professor Lyon, in 
fixing the place and office of the Hebrew prophets severally in the 
history of Israel, draws the attention of his class to the significance 
of obscure passages in their writings, and to the transcendent wealth 
of poetical allusion and imagery, which often needs interpretation in 
order to be fully appreciated. 

Though our report officially covers the last year only, we are glad 
to anticipate that of the present year by saying that the attendance 
at the lectures on the History of Israel is nearly three times that of 
last year, that in the Assyrian language there are eight students for 
last year's four, and that the entire number in the Semitic department 
is more than doubled. 

For the last year's work prizes to the amount of two hundred 
dollars were offered and honorably won for special diligence and pro- 
ficiency in this department, and the larger sum of four hundred and 


fifty dollars is at its disposal for the current year, in case it can 
be thus advantageously employed and worthily bestowed. In this 
department prizes are of peculiar service, owing to the expensiveness 
of many of the text-books. The work, too, is so arduous as to leave 
little time for pecuniary self-help. 

At the last Commencement one of the Semitic students received the 
degree of Doctor of Philosophy, and has been appointed to a profes- 
sorship in Bryn Mawr College ; another took the highest honors in the 
department, and is now, while engaged in advanced study, an assistant 
teacher, and a third took honors as a Semitic scholar. In addition to 
their class*- work Professors Toy and Lyon have attended throughout 
the year the regular meetings of the Semitic Conference, taking, of 
course, the leading part in the work by which its members are actively 
contributing to higher attainments and new research in Semitic lan- 
guages, literature, and learning. The professors during the last 
academic year also delivered several public lectures in a series 
specially designed as "An Introduction to the Study of the Bible." 

The Semitic Museum had its formal opening on the 13th of May, 
1891, when addresses were made by the President, by Mr. Schiff to 
whose generosity we are indebted for its establishment, and by Profes- 
sors Toy and Lyon. The balance of Mr. Schiff' s donation will have 
been nearly expended by the latest orders in behalf of the Museum. 
The collection is of inestimable worth for the unique value of many 
genuine objects of remote antiquity which have been procured and 
given, for the admirable selection of casts, for the stimulus which it 
affords to Semitic study, and for the object-lessons which it furnishes 
as to many matters in which description is at best indefinite and 
vague. Room is wanting for the proper placing of some of the larger 
objects and for the most desirable grouping of others ; and it is to be 
regretted that there must be a ten-minutes' walk between the lecture- 
room and the illustrations which the Museum affords. 

In the last year's report the need of a working library was named. 
With characteristic promptness and kindness Mr. Schiff has met that 
need by the gift of one thousand dollars, — a hopeful beginning, yet 
leaving present and future demands of the department unsupplied. 
Nearly all of this sum has been already expended under the direction 
of the professors. The books are duly catalogued as belonging to a 
branch of the University Library, are placed under the care of a stu- 
dent who gives his services as librarian, and are deposited in a room 
in Sever Hall which has been temporarily assigned for the use of the 
department till better arrangements can be made. 

It is hoped, however, that at no great distance of time the Museum, 
Library, and lecture-rooms may be brought together. Among the 


possible new buildings on College ground none can be more desirable 
than one which should furnish such accommodations for the Semitic 
and Classical departments, and for others also that have like need of 
connected rooms for collections, libraries, and class-rooms. 

It is enough to say of the Semitic professors that they have created 
this department almost out of nothing, and have secured for it the 
honored place which belongs to it of right, but which only ability, 
scholarship, and teaching power of the highest order can command 
for it in a fast and materialistic age like ours. 

All which is respectfully submitted. 

A. P. PEABODY, Chairman. 




May 11, 1892. 

To the Board op Overseers of Harvard University : — 

There is no need of repeating what has been said in former reports 
as to the ability, assiduity, and successful work of the permanent 
Professors of the Divinity School. We have equal reason to express 
our high appreciation of the services of Rev. Mr. Hale as Instructor 
in Homiletics, and of Rev. Mr. Morison, the Librarian, whose charge 
is made increasingly onerous by the lack of sufficient space for cleri- 
cal work, the delivery of books, and the accommodation of readers. 

In the absence of Professor Peabody, Rev. Dr. Brooke Herford and 
Rev. Dr. William J. Tucker have given Lectures on Pastoral Care and 
the Conduct of Worship. Dr. Herford's return to England deprives 
the Divinity School and the University of a teacher, preacher, and 
friend, who has made his influence beneficently felt in more ways 
than we can easily specify, and who will be remembered with endur- 
ing gratitude. As for Dr. Tucker, we can only say that, could his 
lectureship be made a permanent institution, it would be of inesti- 
mable worth to the successive classes of students. 

We trust that Professor Churchill's appointment will, if not in 
form, in fact, be permanent ; for it would be impossible to replace 
without serious loss his instruction in elocution and in pulpit oratory. 

Professor Thayer's place during his absence has been filled by 
Mr. Francis A. Christie, who has shown so rare ability as a teacher 
and lecturer, that, did the fnnds of the School permit, nothing could 
be more desirable than the continuance of his services. 

In saying this we have reference to the actual needs of the School ; 
for while the present Professors have their time fully occupied, and 
there is no one of their courses that can be dispensed with, the range 
of studies might be largely increased, to the advantage of all the 
students, and especially of the graduates of other Schools, who form 
a large proportion of the members of our own. Thus in the New 
Testament, in addition to the critical study of the text, there is room 
for several different, though kindred lines of instruction ; as, for 
instance, the history of the Canon and of the literature appertaining 
to it, the mutual relations and the comprehensive scope of the writ- 


ings that constitute the Christian Scriptures, the Pauline element in 
Christian theology, and the Scriptural grounds on which the leading 
sects of Christendom base their several beliefs. In the Oriental 
department the Professors are overworked, yet there is a need which 
they have no time to fill, of a course in the continuous critical study 
in the original language of some book or books of the Old Testament. 
The Ethics of the Hebrew Scriptures would also furnish materials for 
a fruitful course, for which no man is so well qualified as Professor 
Toy, could he be relieved of a part of his elementary work. 

In the scientific study of Ethics the Divinity School at present fur- 
nishes no instruction. So long as this is the case, we would suggest the 
expediency of giving to one or more of the College courses in Ethics 
a place among the electives of the School. There is no department 
of more importance than this in the training of a teacher of morals 
and religion. 

Eeference was made in last year's report to the importance of 
instruction, such as might be given by a clergyman of large experi- 
ence and broad sympathies, in the actual beliefs, institutions, disci- 
pline, and present state of existing denominations in our own countiy, 
so that the student may enter on the duties of his profession with 
some accurate knowledge of the religious world, of which he is too 
prone to exaggerate the importance of his own section, as the China- 
man does that of the Celestial Empire, as paramount above all other 

A student for the ministiy ought also to have a certain amount of 
legal knowledge, which might come better from a lawyer than from a 
minister. He should learn his own legal obligations as a parish min- 
ister, and the rights thereto corresponding. He should be instructed 
as to his legal no less than moral responsibility in the charge and 
disbursement of trust-funds that may be under his custody, and as to 
the importance of having the accounts of such trust-funds carefully 
kept and duly audited. He should be made conversant with the laws 
that regulate marriage ; and especially, if he does not decline, as 
many ministers do, to perform the marriage service in cases in which 
the rule of the New Testament would prohibit marriage, he should 
possess accurate cognizance of the laws of divorce and the practice of 
divorce courts, lest he find himself in complicit} T with bigamy. 

In order to furnish additional instruction the income of the School 
must be increased. It has been suggested that it is for various rea- 
sons expedient that the Divinity students should be charged the same 
tuition fee that is paid by other members of the University resident 
in Cambridge ; that is, that they should pay $150 per annum, instead 
of the present fee of $50. Your Committee are not unanimous in rec- 


ommending this change ; but they deem it fit that the considerations 
in favor of it should be clearly placed before your Board. A very 
large proportion of the Divinity students are beneficiaries. There 
are two scholarships of $500 each, and the remainder of those who 
are assisted from the funds receive an average annual amount of 
$309, — a sum a little more than $30 in excess of the necessary cost 
of tuition, room-rent, board, and fuel. There is, so far as we can 
ascertain, no other Divinity School which gives its students aid to the 
amount of more than $175. At Andover a beneficiary receives from 
$100 to $150, his expenses ranging from $200 to $300. Were our 
beneficiaries charged for tuition the same fee that is paid in the Law 
and the Scientific Schools, they would still be in a better pecuniary 
condition than the students of any other Divinity School of which we 
have returns. 

It is, at least, an open question whether there are sufficient reasons 
for placing Divinity students in a peculiar position as to their pecu- 
niary liabilities. If without resources at their command, they have 
equal opportunity, and ought to have equal ability, of self-help with 
other graduate students, and there is no profession in which so essen- 
tial service would be rendered to the student himself by such modes 
of self-help as might be open to him before entering on his course or 
in his long vacations. Then, too, a minister, if fit for his work, is 
well provided for from the time that he leaves the School, while a 
young lawyer or physician has to wait several years before he can 
earn a living ; and the average salary of well-educated ministers 
probably exceeds the average earnings of equally well-educated law- 
yers and physiciaus. 

Then, too, it may seem desirable that eleemosynary associations 
should, so far as is possible, be detached from the clerical profession. 
The clergy would thus hold a higher position in the regard of the 
community at large. The profession might, also, both lose and gain, 
equally to its profit, recruits to its ranks. There are undoubtedly 
cases in which a devout and right-meaning young man, with slender 
capacity, falls into the Divinity School by a certain vis inertice, 
because he can thus postpone for three years the question of self- 
support ; and his destiny on leaving the School is among those excel- 
lent men who have every good gift for the pulpit except the needed 
power of thought, diction, and utterance, who serve for a while as 
mere stop-gaps, and then lapse into a still more serviceable silence. 
On the other hand, there probably are young men of high religious 
principle and purpose, and in prosperous condition, who, perhaps 
unconsciously, omit the ministry from their range of choice because 
they virtually regard it as a profession for men of slender means and 
dependent condition. 


Now we cannot help giving aid to those who seek and deserve it, 
as there are funds destined by their donors for that purpose, which 
cannot honestly be otherwise used. But we regard it as eminently 
desirable that the Divinity students who are aided by these funds be 
put upon the same footing with the incumbents of the College scholar- 
ships, by having it fully understood, by the public as well as in the 
School, that the sums given are bestowed in recognition of meritorious 
scholarship determined by a high and rigidly impartial standard, and 
that under no circumstances whatever will they be bestowed where 
that standard is not reached. 

As to the tuition fee we deprecate immediate action, or action 
opposed to the deliberate judgment of the major part of the Divinity 
Faculty ; but we commend the subject to the careful thought of those 
most nearly interested, and hope that the question may not be suf- 
fered to subside till it has been fully considered and discussed in all 
its bearings. 

All which is respectfully submitted. 

A. P. PEABODY, Chairman. 



May 2, 1892. 


The Committee on English Literature, after several talks with one 
another and a conference with the professors and instructors in the 
department, offer this report to the Board of Overseers. 

The printed programme of the department shows the work laid out 
for the present academic year. This is so full and clear a description 
of the courses as to render it quite unnecessary for this Committee 
to go into details concerning them. The Overseers have probably 
received this paper or can readily obtain it. The range of instruc- 
tion is generous. It begins with two courses in Anglo-Saxon, goes on 
with Chaucer, the Elizabethans, Shakespeare, the Nineteenth Century, 
Literary Criticism since the Sixteenth Century, and closes with two 
courses on the Nineteenth Century. To the courses of this year 
others are added, or substituted for them, in other years, so that an 
undergraduate in his four years has an ample opportunity for cover- 
ing a great deal of ground. The programme states that it is proposed 
to give (1) a scientific knowledge of the origin and development of 
the Literature, and (2) a general acquaintance with it. So far as the 
Committee have observed, these objects are attained. 

The number of students taking the courses in English Literature is 
large, yet not so large as might be desired. Twenty-five only have 
taken the course in Anglo-Saxon prose under Professor Child, and 
that in Anglo-Saxon poetry under Asst. Professor Kittredge. This 
is reported as a larger number than in former years, but it seems 
a small one considering the host of young men now gathered at Cam- 
bridge. Thirty students, more than one half being graduates, have 
read Chaucer with Asst. Professor Kittredge. Fifteen, chiefly gradu- 
ates, have taken the Elizabethan writers with Asst. Professor Wendell. 
The stream runs fuller towards Shakespeare, who has been studied by 
about one hundred under Professor Child ; and perhaps he thinks his 
class quite large enough, but the Committee wish it were far larger 
for the sake of the College and the community. Thirty have fol- 
lowed the Literature of the Seventeenth Century under Professor 
Briggs. Twenty have taken Literary Criticism since the Sixteenth 


Century under Mr. Fletcher. One hundred read the poets of the 
Nineteenth Century with Professor Hill during the first half-year, and 
ninety are now reading the prose writers of the same century with 
Mr. Gates, who mentions the encouraging fact that some of his pupils 
have written extended theses on such subjects as John Henry Newman, 
the Oxford Movement, and the Development of Prose St3 T le. Asst. 
Professor Wendell has a single pupil in the Courses of Research 
for Special students offered to Graduates, who is engaged in pursuing 
Satirical Literature from its beginning in England to the end of the 
Elizabethan period. 

It would undoubtedly be a great gain to this department could a 
room of cheerful size and aspect be set apart for it. A still greater 
gain would come with more liberal supplies of books, particularly of 
those difficult for a student to obtain, whether in a department library 
or in the General Libraiy. The reading-room recommended in the 
last report of the Librarian, with a subsidiary room well fitted with 
all desirable books in English, is a proposal much to be commended. 




May 11, 1892. 
To the Board of Overseers of Harvard University : — 

The Committee on Government submits herewith its report for the 
year 1891 : — 

Several visits have been made by different members of the Com- 
mittee at various times to University Hall in Cambridge, and the 
workings of the present disciplinar}^ system of the College have been 
studied on the spot. The whole Committee also had a long con- 
ference with the present Dean. 

We believe that the new disciplinary methods of the College are 
working well. Without irritating students, and without throwing 
any undue burden on the teachers in the College, already hard worked, 
the system, as administered, exercises a very salutary and a constant 
check on all the students. It is impossible for any student to be 
absent from College even for a clay without the fact being actually 
known to some officer of the College ; and when we speak of actual 
knowledge, we mean, not merely that the fact is recorded on the 
books, but that it is actually present to some officer's mind. In this 
way the laxity of attendance which, however exaggerated by common 
report, did actually exist in the College some } T ears ago, has con- 
siderably diminished and regular habits are encouraged. When a 
man for some reason, good or bad, does absent himself from one or 
more recitations, without waiting to know if he has been found out 
he now presents either a good excuse or an honest confession of 
error. We regard even the confession as valuable, for the necessity 
of making it deters men from cutting recitations. 

The administration of such a s} 7 stem requires considerable clerical 
force, as the absences from College exercises must be recorded and 
the records must be properly tabulated. To deal with the students 
themselves requires good judgment and a high degree of executive 
ability. In our opinion the new Dean, Mr. Briggs, has both these 
qualities and is well fitted for his position. We wish also to reiterate 
our opinion that in Mr. Montague Chamberlain the College has an ex- 
cellent officer, admirably suited to the very difficult position he holds. 

The necessary labor of these officers is so considerable that they 
should be relieved from the cleiical details of their work as much as 
possible. Early in the year, owing to the appointment of one of their 


subordinates to another position, both these gentlemen were much 
overworked and barely escaped serious illness. It would have been 
impossible properly to fill their places and we regard the danger run 
by the administration of the College as a veiy serious one. 

We have made special inquiry into the accuracy of the reports of 
attendance at the different College exercises, and we are informed 
that while these reports give a reasonably fair notion of the attendance 
of the individual students, yet they are by no means as accurate as 
could be desired. Most of them are made by beneficiaries of the 
Price-Greenleaf Fund, and we are informed that some students thus 
receiving aid seriously object to doing any work for the College, and 
that the reports of attendance suffer through the unwillingness of 
these men to discharge the duties imposed on them. It seems to us 
strange that men receiving help in pursuing their studies should be 
unwilling to make a very moderate return for such help. The Price- 
Greenleaf student is expected to give the College only four hours a 
week — certainly no very great tax on his time. It is possible that 
a clear statement of the facts and of the rights of the case, officially 
made to these young men by the authorities of the College, would 
bring them to realize the impropriety of their conduct. 

After the Christmas recess the Dean and his subordinates were 
much perplexed by the absence of students from Cambridge beyond 
the time allowed them by the rules. In many instances these students 
were absent with the knowledge and approval of their parents, who 
thought that a strict enforcement of the rules in the case of their 
own children would be unduly harsh. To compel a young man to 
choose between disobeying his parents and disobeying the authorities 
of the College is undesirable ; yet in just this position some students 
were placed. Without formally excusing the students, therefore, it 
was decided to send to the parents a letter of information, remon- 
strance and warning, and we have reason to believe that this course 
had an excellent effect. The parents of students should bear in mind 
that no college can maintain proper discipline if such discipline is 
assumed by them to be arbitrary and unjust. 

If, as we believe, the disciplinary system which Harvard College 
has inaugurated is a wise and a successful experiment in the manage- 
ment of young men, it is an experiment worth to the College a con- 
siderable expenditure of money. We recommend to the authorities 
that all possible aid be given to the Dean and to Mr. Chamberlain in 
perfecting and in administering this system. 

For the Committee, 




May 21, 1892. 
To the Board of Overseers of Harvard University : — 

The undersigned Committee beg leave to submit the following 
observations : — 

The number of students in German at this University is at present 
about 860. The classes are almost all so large that the teachers can 
devote but little attention to each individual student. This circum- 
stance renders it especially important that the preparation for the 
instruction the}" are to receive should be as nearly equal as possible 
among the students when they enter their classes. To this end it 
seems most desirable that the examinations for admission should be 
as serious and strict in German as they are, for instance, in Latin. 

The stated requirement in Latin is: "The translation at sight of 
simple prose (with questions on the usual forms and ordinary con- 
struction of the language)." As to German, it is : " The translation 
at sight of simple prose." The difference between these two require- 
ments is not great in appearance. But we are informed that, as a 
matter of fact, the actual difference in the substance and mode of the 
examinations is important ; that it ordinarily takes a student at least 
two years to prepare for the elementary Latin examination, while the 
average time for the preparation in German is under one year and 
often not over six months, and that in the examination itself only 
one hour is assigned to German, while two hours are given to ele- 
mentary Latin or Greek. We are of the opinion that no fair test of 
a student's ability to translate German at sight can be offered by the 
present perfunctory way in which the elementary examination is 

We do not mean to discuss here the relative importance of the 
study of the ancient and of modern languages. But in view of the vast 
importance of a good reading knowledge of German to the earnest 
student of history, philosophy, philology, political economy, the nat- 
ural sciences, etc., we believe that young men entering the University 
ought to be able to master at least the rudiments of German, and 
that the examinations should be so arranged and conducted as to 
give a full test of the students' ability to read that language, instead 
of furnishing, as we are informed they now do, merely an incentive 
to the hasty acquisition of a smattering of it. 


We therefore respectfully recommend that the examination for 
admission in German be ordered to occupy two hours instead of one, 
and that the requirements be appropriately raised. 







June 8, 1892. 

To the Board of Overseers of Harvard University : — 

For the Committee on the Botanic Garden, I beg to report that, 
owing to the family affliction of Professor Goodale, the annual meet- 
ing at the Garden in April last year was not held. 

The Committee held a meeting on the 30th of May this year ; 
found the Garden in good condition ; were conveyed thence to the 
Botanical Museum just completed, and were agreeably surprised at 
the extent, the construction, and the arrangement of the rooms — 
well aired, well lighted, and, we have no doubt, well warmed, and as 
fire-proof as could be made. 

The glass flowers, handsomely cased, nearly fill a large room, and 
will be increased four-fold if the artists live and retain their interest 
and lo} r alty. 

The fossil plants, presented by Professor Alexander Agassiz, will 
be arranged as soon as the cases are ready, and so with the useful 
products of plants. 

The Committee were favorably impressed with the seating arrange- 
ments in the Nash Lecture Hall, but already the space is inadequate 
for the two hundred and twenty students who attend the lectures. 

The loss of Professor Watson is very severe, overwork the cause. 
The Herbarium is in charge of Dr. Robinson, whom Professor 
Goodale recommends as successor to Professor Watson. 

It is needless to add that an endowment of say $100,000 is needed 
for the Botanical Department. 

HENRY LEE, Chairman. 


May, 1892. 
Mr. Chairman and Gentlemen of the Visiting Committee : — 

The botanical establishment at Cambridge consists of the following 
subdivisions : the Botanic Garden and Herbarium, the Botanical 
Laboratories, and the Museum. Each of these has its own policy, 
its own needs. During the past }'ear the Botanic Garden has pursued 
substantially the same course as in former years, and has lived quite 


within its income. The Lowell Fund for the support of the Botanic 
Garden is not yet sufficient alone to support the Garden upon a 
suitable basis. Miss Anna C. Lowell has for years annually increased 
the Lowell Fund by $1000. The income of this fund, therefore, is 
to a certain extent supplemented by the income of what we call the 
Botanic Department Fund. The separation of the funds was at the 
suggestion of Mr. Agassiz, in 1885, in order to secure for the Depart- 
ment the use of the income of certain funds which have been given 
for specific botanical purposes other than those connected with the 
Garden. The members of the Committee will see the results of the 
past severe winter, which we are now trying to repair. A large pro- 
portion of our perennials, especially our herbaceous plants, have 
suffered, but we have restored, as far as it was possible to do so in 
the limited time, the more important of these, while others have been 
replaced by plants which we are now trying to introduce from New 
Zealand. The greenhouses have again been repaired, and promise 
to be useful for some time longer. The heating apparatus given us 
by Mr. Hunnewell and Mr. Ames some years ago answers every 
purpose, and is considered by us a very economical arrangement. 

The Committee will observe that our palms are again breaking 
through the roof. There is doubtless no other way left open to us 
but to cut these down and begin again. I question whether it would 
be advisable to advocate at any time the construction of a large 
palm-house here. The expense of running such a house in the winter 
would, I think, be too great, when the needs of the Department in 
other directions are so pressing and obvious. I have no changes to 
propose with regard to the disposition of the plants or of the money 
of the Garden. 

Second, the Herbarium. It is known to every member of this 
Committee that the fears which were felt last year in regard to the 
imprudent manner in which Mr. Watson was working beyond his 
strength have unhappily been realized. Since Mr. Watson's death 
work at the Herbarium has been carried on by Dr. Robinson, Dr. 
Watson's assistant, and by Mr. Fernald, but no permanent arrange- 
ment has yet been made by the Corporation in regard to the policy 
which the Herbarium is to pursue. We are doubtless bound to keep 
fresh Gray's Manual of Botany and the other books of his botanical 
series, inasmuch as the copyright belongs to the Herbarium. The 
cost of this editorial work is considerable, but will be paid for out of 
the returns of sales of the books themselves. The Committee will 
be very glad to know that in consequence of the subscription made 
two years ago, Mr. Watson was able to initiate certain important 
changes in the management of the Herbarium, and although these 
changes came too late to be of great service to him, they have shown 


in what way the scope of activity there can be increased to advantage. 
Before the expiration of the subscription we need to secure an endow- 
ment for the Herbarium. 

Third, the Museum. The Botanical Museum consists of three 
coordinated parts : first, the Synoptic Collection, illustrated by glass 
models of flowers. The accuracy and beauty of these models are 
known not only to the members of the Committee, but to the increas- 
ing number of visitors who are enchanted by them. The prosecution 
of this work is continuous. The elder Blaschka is busy in his home 
near Dresden ; his son has just completed a visit for study in Jamaica, 
and is now in California. From last accounts, his results were far 
oeyond his expectations. He will be able to carry back materials 
for the construction of nearly all the more important tropical useful 
plants, and those of the sub-tropics and our southern belt. It is a 
pleasure to state that these two artists are even more enthusiastically 
devoted to their task than ever before, and have most loyally declined 
to entertain any proposition looking to a breaking of the contract 
with us. The generous patrons of this enterprise have anticipated 
all their wants. 

The second division of the Museum comprises the fossil plants 
which have been turned over to us by Mr. Agassiz, and are now 
lodged in one of the basement rooms. A selection from these can 
be readily prepared for exhibition at any moment as soon as our 
oases are ready. 

The third division, comprising the useful products of plants, has 
received very large accessions during the past year. Large invoices 
have very recently arrived, so that the question which I have already 
asked the Committee is one which has been forced upon me again, 
and which happily I have been able to answer. A friend of the 
College, who desired his name to be kept from the public, promises 
for the present academic year the sum of $2500 for the Herbarium 
and $2500 for this division of our Botanical Museum. With this 
sum in hand, and without encroaching upon our capital, I shall be 
able to construct cases, and in this way carry out the wishes of all 
our students who are desirous of seeing our rich collections of useful 
products properly displayed. With this sum we shall be able to 
build enough cases for one room, but this is not sufficient to enable 
us to prepare and print the labels for the adequate description of all 
our products, nor will it enable us to think of printing the illustrated 
catalogue which is so much needed. While, therefore, I shall not 
ask the Committee to take into consideration the raising of the sum 
which I have previously spoken of, but shall hold that in suspense, 
I desire to announce that the work is for the present going on satis- 
factorily and symmetrically. To carry out ail our plans would 


require at least the sum I formerly mentioned, namely, $30,000, less 
the sum just promised. An endowment will ultimately be needed of 

Laboratories. The Cryptogamic Laboratory during Dr. Farlow's 
absence is in charge of Professor Thaxter. The instruction and 
investigations here have gone on uninterruptedly. The laboratories 
in Phanerogamic Botany, which have been so generously equipped 
by Mr. Ames and Mr. Hunnewell, are still adequate for our needs, 
although we are obliged now to take our classes in sections owing to 
their size. The numbers in attendance are as follows : — 

Course 20a . . . 

. . . 7 

Course 3 . . . 

... 22 

" 20Z> . . . 

. . . 6 

2 . . . 

... 40 

4 . . . 

. . . 12 

1 . . . 

... 227 

The N. C. Nash Lecture Hall has been provided with comfortable 
seats, which are very much appreciated by all the students. The 
hall has a seating capacity of 180, but we have more than 220 in 
attendance ; therefore supplemental seats are added each lecture. 
The ratio of increase during the last few years has been uniform, 
being not far from twenty per cent, for the last three years. It is 
very difficult for us to know how we can acid fifty more students to 
our elementary class. 

The points which I have presented thus briefly cover substantially 
all the ground that we need go over at the present time. I remain, 

Yours very truly, 




June 8, 1892. 
To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : — 

The Committee on the Administration of the University Chapel 
has conferred with the Preachers to the University, and through one 
or more of its members has attended morning prayers in Appleton 

Your Committee is much impressed with the importance and 
success of the work done in this department of University thought 
and effort. 

The voluntary system in religious matters receives each year a 
fresh demonstration of its advantages over the former method of 
compulsory attendance. The students bring to the services as now 
conducted a cordial support, which is manifested in the number of 
those who attend the daily and weekly exercises, in the spirit of in- 
terest and enquiry which leads many to seek personal interviews with 
the Preachers, and in the tone of the student press which was formerly 
hostile to these influences, but is now an ally. There is no longer 
place for the feeling of contempt or antagonism, which, though 
limited to but few, still had existence under the old system : it has 
given place to earnest participation or friendly neutrality. Your 
Committee gladly credits the evidence of those whose special duty it 
is to observe and judge the moral and religious tone of the students, 
and who are emphatic in stating that in the conduct of the great 
majority of students a marked and steady improvement is discernible. 
Many influences have doubtless contributed to this result, but among 
them the removal of the compulsory feature in religions observance 
and the greater variety and interest afforded by the present system 
are surely entitled to a place. 

The plan of placing the religious interests of the College in the 
hands of a Board of Preachers, appointed annually, was wisely con- 
ceived, and the College has been thus far most fortunate in the men 
to whom has been entrusted this high service. The opportunity to 
address these earnest young men upon themes which the scholastic 
instructor seldom ventures to touch, and which are disregarded in 
many homes, is a great privilege, and it is gratifying, although not 
surprising, that it is so esteemed by those upon whom it has been con-. 


f erred. The Preachers have proved, if proof were necessary, that 
the active and enquiring mind of youth is hospitable to all truth, and 
that the heart is ready to respond to every lofty appeal, if only the 
hand that touches the chord be controlled by absolute sincerity and 
intense conviction. The Preachers not only give, but receive. One 
of them, ripe in years and experience, writes : "I have only to add 
that this Harvard College service has been one of the most enjoyable, 
and to me one of the most profitable in my life." Another says : 
"The pastoral work at Harvard is awfully interesting. I only wish 
I had known how to do it better." This is the spirit which animates 
all. A distinguished visitor from Edinburgh University speaks of the 
Chapel service of Harvard as "the most religions service, public or 
private," that he had ever seen. 

In the opinion of your Committee it must ever be of the highest 
importance that as vacancies occur in the Board of Preachers no 
effort should be relaxed to secure, wherever they ma} T be found, men 
who ean speak with some of the authority of Christ, because sharing 
in some degree his spiritual insight and sincerity, who, whatever their 
creed, are broad enough to see that Christianity is larger than dogma, 
and who have further that ignotum quid which places them in warm 
sympathy with the eager, receptive mind of youth. 

The changes in the Board during the past year have been numerous. 
Prof. F. G. Peabody has been spending his sabbatical year abroad, 
and Prof. D. G. Lyon has filled his place as Chairman of the Board. 
Rev. Phillips Brooks, D.D., who has served as one of the Preachers 
since the inauguration of the new system in 1886, was compelled by 
other and engrossing duties to withdraw from a service to which he 
had given labor and enthusiasm in liberal measure. Rev. William 
Lawrence, D.D., also retired before the beginning of the current 
academic year. Rev. Brooke Herford, D.D., as if to make the loss 
to the College of his services as light as possible, filled out nearly his 
full year's duty before returning to England. Prof. C. C. Everett, 
D.D., and Rev. Leighton Parks are this year members of the Board 
for the first time. Rev. E. E. Hale, D.D., has repeatedly volun- 
teered to conduct services when illness or other cause prevented one 
or other of the Preachers from performing his full duty. 

The stated and formal religious services conducted by the Preachers 
are 1st, Morning Prayers, which include music, Scriptural reading 
and a brief expository address ; 2nd, Vespers on Thursday afternoons 
during the middle portion of the academic year, a service largely 
musical (with full male choir — 25 sopranos and altos, 16 tenors and 
basses) ; and 3rdly, Sunday evening services, including a sermon by 
one of the Preachers or by eminent divines of various communions by 


invitation of the Board. All these services are well attended, and 
are marked by a spirit of earnest devotion. 

The Preacher conducting morning prayers is in attendance every 
forenoon during his term of duty at Wads worth House, and in re- 
sponse to his invitation man} T students come to talk with him about 
their plans, their doubts, hopes, and beliefs. This has proved to be 
a most interesting and valuable part of the work. 

Of kindred aim with the influences which centre in the College 
Chapel are the several religious societies, which show enlarged mem- 
bership and increasing vitality ; the College Conferences, which dis- 
cuss ethical and social questions ; and the courses of lectures upon 
the study of the Bible and upon the Old and New Testament. 

Your Committee is of the opinion that this great power exerted by 
the College for manhood and morality is not fully appreciated by the 
public. It is true that a portion of the students do not come within 
its influence, and for them the College must discharge its responsibil- 
ity through other forces and by other methods ; but the Committee 
believes that the College ministers to the religious and spiritual needs 
of the great mass of its students with rare wisdom and success. 
Your Committee ventures to offer the following suggestions : — 

1st. The Preachers appear to be of one mind as to the need of a 
new Psalter and of a new Hymn and Tune Book. These have long 
been delayed, but are now in process of preparation. Such laborers, 
doing such work, ought not to be hampered by unfit or antiquated 

2nd. The moral value of the services would certainly be increased 
if a larger number of the members of the Faculty would more fre- 
quently attend. It is believed that the attendance of students would 
be materially increased by the example. Whether this attendance 
would cost the individual members of the Faculty more than it would 
benefit the University is a question for each instructor to decide for 
himself, and the University in this as in other matters has every 
reason to trust with confidence to the zeal and devotion of the 

3rd. The need of a new building for the use of the University 
Preachers and of the religious societies is keenly felt by all those en- 
gaged in conducting the services. This building should contain an 
auditorium for 400 or 500 persons, a music-room for rehearsals of the 
College choir, a reading-room and a room for social gatherings. Such 
a building devoted to the religious and moral interests of the students 
would emphasize their importance and give stability and permanence 
to their place in the general scheme of University instruction. It 
would serve the important purpose of bringing together under one 


roof the various religious societies which, unless such a permanent 
home is provided for them, may show a tendency to separation in- 
stead of toward mutual attraction and increasing unity of effort and 
purpose. At some of the larger universities this need has been 
already supplied. To those who have especially at heart the moral 
welfare of the students at Harvard and who are in sympathy with the 
broad and liberal efforts now exerted to promote this welfare, the gift 
of a building dedicated to these uses would seem to appeal with 
peculiar force as a most wise and beneficent act. Your Committee 
earnestly hopes that this paramount wish of the Preachers may at 
some near day be realized. 

For the Committee : 



May, 1892. 

To the Board of Overseers of Harvard University : — 

The Committee on Fine Arts report that they have visited Cam- 
bridge and have sought to establish relations both with the Professors 
of the Fine Arts courses and with many in and out of College who 
have benefitted from their instructions. The courses are as much in 
favor with the undergraduates as ever and your Committee can only 
speak in the most cordial terms of the work of the department. It is 
true that the Fine Arts courses are sometimes elected by the young 
men as being easy and as requiring little labor on their part. It is 
difficult to see anything in their general nature which should make 
them less serious studies than, for example, General History or Political 
Economy. But possibly the fact that they are thus considered easy 
is not to be entirely deplored, as the very men who would be likely to 
elect easy studies are those whom the refining influences of the Fine 
Arts may affect for good. Certainly the instructors continue to hold 
firmly the esteem and affection of their pupils. In no way can the 
College exert more good than through the commanding influence of 
strong men, no matter what they teach ; and in this way at least its 
Professors have made the Fine Arts department one of the most dis- 
tinctly civilizing influences in the University. 

The Committee record with satisfaction Mr. Moore's appointment 
as an Assistant Professor. He had served the College for many 
years and many graduates speak with gratitude of their indebtedness 
to him and his instruction. He has recently published a work on 
Gothic Architecture which is both philosophical and simple, and which 
approaches an old subject from an entirely fresh point of view. It 
is without an equal among recent works in the same field, and being a 
thorough scholarly and successful work it deserved to gain for its 
author recognition and encouragement from the University. 

There has been a great and wide-spread increase within the last few 
years of the popular interest in matters of Fine Arts, and the number 
of educated young men throughout the country who have chosen 
some branch of the Fine Arts as a profession has also greatly 
increased. Meanwhile, at Cambridge, while the number of students 
taking Fine Arts as an elective has — as might be expected — very 


greatly increased, the instruction offered them has not, we believe, 
materially changed since the early years of the department. Fine 
Arts courses were elected by students in the following numbers during 
the years respectively named : — 

1875 116 

1880 108 

1885 200 approximately 

1890 330 

Professor Norton and Assistant Professor Moore, with certain 
assistants, have had charge of the department no matter what the 
number of students. In glancing at the Catalogue, one observes that 
two professors and one instructor have charge of Semitic languages 
and history, substantially the same force as that applied to the Fine 
Arts, although these Semitic studies, we imagine, can hardly attract 
such large masses of students as those attending the Fine Arts 
courses. So crowded have these courses become that those young 
men who are assigned seats at a distance from the Fine Arts lecturer 
freely complain that they cannot hear him. Surely an elective that 
attracts so many students deserves the fullest attention from the 
Universit3 T . It seems to us on the contrary that compared with 
other courses, and in proportion to the number of students concerned 
and the general interest in the subject, the department has an instruc- 
tive force numerically very small. All will grant that the popularity 
of the courses is largely due to the influence of the lecturers, but it is 
also surely due in part to the general awakening of interest in Art 
throughout the country. In view of these very great changes in the 
conditions affecting the courses, and while having no words but those 
of praise for the courses as they stand, it may be well to consider if 
they might not be amplified, and if so, on what lines. There is the 
more reason for this consideration because in the very near future the 
legacy of Mrs. William H. Fogg becomes available, and will result in 
the building of a modest Art Museum with typical collections for 
purposes of instruction. It may reasonably be hoped that so evident 
a sign at Cambridge, that the Fine Arts are recognized as contributing 
to a liberal education, may not be without its influence and may lead 
to still more being clone for this department either by the University 
or some benefactor. 

The present courses cover substantially the following ground. 
Professor Norton lectures three times a week ; one year on "Ancient 
Art" and the alternate year on " Roman and Mediaeval Art, with 
special study of the development of Gothic Architecture and of the 
Revival of Art in Italy in the Thirteenth Century." Moreover, he 
" assists and directs advanced students in the study of special topics 


in the history of the Fine Arts " ; but this year, for instance, out of 
five students who sought to pursue such a course of research only one 
was found qualified and was set at work. Assistant Professor Moore 
gives lectures on the " Principles of Delineation, Color, and Chiaros- 
curo " and " of Design in Painting, Sculpture, and Architecture " and 
he has classes in kt practice in drawing and water colors." The de- 
tailed syllabus of Mr. Moore's courses indicates that his lectures cover 
in a general way the history of architecture and painting in their great 
periods. These titles certainly include much ground and are evidently 
intended to form a general review of art history. 

The practice in Drawing and Water Colors is such as to increase 
the observing powers of the student rather than to make him an ac- 
complished draughtsman. It is given on somewhat Pre-Raphaelite 
lines, which many artistic people deplore. It may, however, at the 
very least be argued that these methods are as good as others, if there 
is no ultimate end in view beyond the training of the critical and 
observing faculties. 

The courses, as we have said, gain immensely from the personal 
character and influence and charm of the instructors. The lectures 
are apparently quite discursive and treat as much of the people of the 
Middle Ages and of the Renaissance as of their Art. They are 
directed not to the forming of artists or to any technical end, but to 
nourish a liberal culture and to lead to an appreciation of Art. We 
imagine that it would be hard to say whether they would be more 
valuable for the prospective lawyer, architect, or man of business. 

There are possibly some ways in which these existing courses might 
be amplified with advantage to the general student and without mak- 
ing them too special or technical. A graduate from the Fine Arts 
courses at Harvard, and who is to live in a country which now spends 
such vast sums on modern Art and Architecture, should have a pretty 
clear idea of the history and tendencies of Art in its various branches 
at the present day and in recent centuries. Except in the case of two 
or three of Mr. Moore's lectures the syllabus of the instruction now 
given does not reach this ground, and from conversation with young 
graduates we judge that this information is arrived at only in discur- 
sive talks away from the main lines of the lectures. Even then mod- 
ern art apparently receives but scant courtesy and the students are 
apt to think it somewhat beneath their serious attention. At Colum- 
bia College, as we are informed, a different view prevails. A course of 
lectures has been established, given by various sculptors, architects, 
painters, and musicians, in which they speak of their various arts to the 
students. These are not " smoke talks " nor extra lectures, but form 
a regular course open to election by the student. We do not know 


what success that course has had, but it ought to be successful. It 
ought also to be possible to arrange a similar course at Cambridge. 

Nothing is more inspiring to young men than to be put in close 
relations with active vigorous minds that are full of the problems of 
the moment. They thus get in touch with the world of to-day and 
away for a time from their ordinary recluse life. Looking through 
the long list of " Public Lectures, Evening Readings, Concerts, etc.,' , 
given last year, doubtless with some such end in view and recorded 
pp. 109-113 of the Catalogue, the only lectures at all relating to Art 
were some three or four of an illustrated series upon English History, 
given by -r- the Professor of Chemistry. It would then be a new 
and splendid departure, if the Fine Arts Department at Cambridge 
could in this way be put in closer touch with the hopes and the work 
of the art world of to-day through the help of some of our many 
ardent and successful art workers. 

Twenty or twenty-five years ago it was comparatively unusual for 
an educated man to become an artist of any kind. Most of us re- 
member that it was held to indicate an effeminate or unpractical or 
unmethodical or in some way undesirable sort of mind for a man to 
adopt art as a profession. That is changed now and throughout the 
country young men of the best education are adopting art in one form 
or another as a means of support. Harvard does not keep pace with 
the country in this matter. Between 1870 and 1880 thirteen young 
men at graduation expressed an intention of following some form of 
art as a profession. Between 1880 and 1890 twenty-three made the 
same statement. It does not seem to us that this increase 'bears a 
proper ratio to the total increased number of graduates or the great 
advance of public interest in the subject. Every American city of 
size now has its Art School and Paris swarms with American art 
students. The college graduates are not numerous enough among 
them, and we think it is because while in college their thoughts are 
turned in other directions or perhaps never really turned towards art 
as a work for to-day. With more contact with the growing, ambitious, 
striving, and hopeful artists of to-day the college student would soon 
take his full share in these branches of modern usefulness. 

When with this end in view we consider amplifying to any extent 
the existing courses, it is evident that they would of necessity become 
somewhat more special and technical. If funds for the purpose were 
available to found a chair of Architecture, the ends in view would 
perhaps be well met. Such a Professor might surely lecture on 
Architecture without trenching on Professor Norton's wider field, and 
he might also teach it not as a profession but as it might well be 
understood by any banker or teacher or lawyer. Certainly those 


fifteenth century ''humanists," who first of moderns studied the 
classics and outlined a liberal education as it has since largely been 
understood, counted amoung their own accomplishments not only a 
critical knowledge of ancient architecture, but an interest in the art 
work of their own day. They were all either builders themselves or 
intimate with designers and craftsmen of all kinds. College grad- 
uates of our day, who are so soon in turn to become patrons of artists 
of every kind, may well likewise have an intimate knowledge of art as 
it is possible to practice it to-day, without in any way becoming spe- 
cialists or professional. A Professor of Architecture might probably 
help them to such knowledge. 

Professor Chaplin, the late Dean of the Scientific School, in several 
of his reports urged the foundation of a Professorship of Architecture. 
He intended it to be in connection with the Scientific School, and 
argued that as all the technical instruction for an architect is already 
given in that School, it needed but the appointment of the right man 
as Professor of Architecture to make the Scientific School an excel- 
lent School of Architecture. 

It seems to us that such work is more needed in connection with the 
Undergraduate Department. We should be glad to see a beginning- 
there develop into a real School of Architecture, and cannot doubt 
for a moment that it would do so. But more is needed to form such 
a school than the addition of one man. A School of Architecture 
means a large working library of books, photographs, and casts di- 
rectly at hand in the school, and it means instruction in drawing, 
water color, and ornament of a kind the College now does not furnish. 
More than all, it needs a nucleus of clever students to form that com- 
panionship and rivalry and esprit cle corps which so greatly aid the 
art student. It would require some time and a large sum to offer 
these advantages in as attractive a form as they are now offered in 
Boston to the one hundred or more architectural students at the 
Institute of Technology. If, however, a beginning is made at Cam- 
bridge by founding a professorship, and if courses are given that 
fairly place' art before the students as a modern profession worthy 
their active attention, and if the new museum proves the incentive 
that we have the right to expect, we maj- well look to the possibility 
of Harvard before many years offering a professional art education 
to architects and other artists. If this were placed at the high 
level held by the other Harvard professional schools, it need not 
compete with the neighboring school at the Institute of Technology. 
A young man is there supposed in four years to learn not only 
his profession, but also gain a liberal education. Of course he 
cannot fully accomplish these ends. It is a course of the very 


greatest usefulness, and not to be spoken of but with the gravest 
respect. But we can conceive of one that should receive only college 
graduates or their equals in general culture, and keep them for 
three or four years, like the other professional schools, at work 
only on professional studies. Adding to such work all the influences 
and charms of Harvard life, we may be sure that such a high-grade 
school would be not only popular, but of the highest use. Harvard 
would no longer stand coldly critical of the present and contented 
with a review of the remote past, but would thus, as is right, join her- 
self to the many active workers that art claims among us. 

The Committee make this report in the hope that discussion may 
lead to some practical suggestion or movement, and in the feeling 
that no time would be so opportune for beginning such a develop- 
ment as when the addition of a museum to the University's posses- 
sions turns the mind towards the Department of Fine Arts. 


[ The two other members of the Committee are absent from the country for a 

prolonged period.] 



To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : — 

Few persons not intimately connected with the system of instruc- 
tion now pursued in the College, or, indeed, with the existing De- 
partment of Rhetoric and English Composition, have any conception 
of either the amount or the nature of the work now done by the 
instructors in that department. In quantity this work is calculated 
to excite dismay ; while the performance of it involves not only 
unremitted industry, but mental drudgery of the most exhausting 

The above language is undoubtedly strong ; but, while it con- 
tains an acknowledgment due to the instructors in the department 
under review, a recital of the facts will justify it. Instruction 
in English Composition at Harvard is now divided into prescribed 
and elective courses, the prescribed courses consisting of what are 
known as "English A," "English 5," and "English <7." As 
the Committee has confined its investigations, so far as the present 
report is concerned, to certain features in the prescribed work, no 
further reference to the elective courses is necessary. 

"English A," — the course prescribed for the Freshman class — is 
designed to give (1) elementary instruction in the theory and practice 
of English Composition, and (2) an introduction to the study of Eng- 
lish Literature. The theory is taught throughout the year by lect- 
ures ; the practice is obtained in short weekly themes, written in the 
class-room and criticized by the instructors. One of the instruc- 
tors in this course writes to the Committee as follows in regard to it 
and those taking part in it : — 

" English A is prescribed for all Freshmen ; it has, therefore, been 
thought unfair to exclude from the course Freshmen who have not 
passed the entrance examination in English. The number of these 
men is not very large. Besides, there are a good many special students 
in the College and the Scientific School who wish to take English A 
in order to work into a class, or as a useful part of their special 
course. There are about a hundred such men, and very few of them 
have tried the entrance examination. About one half of these special 
students are as well fitted for the course as the great majority of the 
Freshmen are — not very well at the best. The conditioned Freshmen 
and the incompetent special students, constituting from one-seventh to 


one-fifth of the entire number of men taking English A, have always 
made the task of the theme reader more severe than it is naturally, so 
to speak. They drag down the grade of instruction in the class, and, 
at best, they simply scrape through the course, and go on to burden 
the other prescribed courses in English — B and C. In 1890-91, 
the lecture-room provided for the Freshmen was so crowded that a 
division of the class had to be made. It was thought that perhaps 
some relief from the burden of the unprepared might be obtained by 
sending them off to be lectured to separately. Accordingly I lectured 
to about a hundred men, including Freshmen who had been condi- 
tioned at entrance and all special students in all departments of the 
University who had not passed the entrance examination. The 
themes of these men were not separated from the themes of the rest 
of the class, and all took the same examination. The best of the 
special students did very well — quite as well as the best Freshmen — 
half of the division stood very low." 

The theme writing in English A is of the most elementary descrip- 
tion ; but the compositions in this course, over 6000 in number during 
each half year, are carefully criticised by the proper instructor, and 
returned by him to the student. They are then rewritten, and often 
recast. Owing to the number of these exercises and the constant 
accumulation of fresh papers the rewritten themes are not read 
by the instructors, except to determine the final grade of a student 
whose mark is doubtful. The work of criticising and correcting the 
English A themes is not inaptly described by certain of the instructors 
engaged in it as of a " stupifying " character, to which it is difficult 
to give more than four hours of intelligent attention per day ; and, 
judging by a single set of 450 papers, your Committee is disposed to 
consider the adjective " stupefying " as a mild term to apply to 
such work, while four hours per day would seem to be an excessive 
time to devote to it.* 

In order to give some idea of what the necessary college work of 
composition reading now is, the Committee will merely say further 
that, outside of English A, in the prescribed course for Sophomores 
known as English B, it amounted during the current year to 20,000 

* Mr. Lathrop writes on this subject : " This year I have read about eighty such 
exercises every week. At the beginning of the year I have found in my experi- 
ence (of only two years) that the amount of correction necessary is so great, and 
the corrections have to be explained so much in writing, that I can read only 
eight an hour." To the same effect Mr. Hurlbut says : 'At the beginning of the 
college year I read and corrected eight themes an hour, four hours a day. I 
could not, however, read for four hours in succession. At present I can read 
fifteen themes in one hour, twenty-five in two hours ; a third hour at the same 
work is wasted. In one day I read carefully and corrected sixty Freshman 
themes ; the next day, however, I could do no work well. On an average I 
devote a little over two hours a day to Freshman themes." 


pages of 150 words each ; while in the higher course known as Eng- 
lish 12, intended for students who have passed in English A and B 
and wish further to pursue the study of composition, it amounted to 
some 25,000 pages averaging 130 words each. The number of 
separate exercises annually handed in to all the instructors of the 
English Department is estimated at thirty-eight thousand (38,000). 

A cursory examination of a fractional part of this immense mass of 
written matter led your Committee to entertain grave doubts whether 
the difficulty in the situation as it now exists, as apparent in the over- 
tasked condition of the instructors in the Department of English 
Composition, was not largely due to defective and inadequate training 
in the preparatory schools. In other words, as the department is now 
organized, under the existing standards of admission, the College 
seemed to be compelled, during the Freshman year, to do a vast 
amount of elementary educational work which should be done in the 
preparatory schools. 

It is unnecessary in this connection to remind the Board that the 
academic department of the College has changed greatly within the 
last twenty-five years. During that period, the age of admission has 
been gradually raised, until now the average student entering the 
Freshman class is nineteen years old, instead of seventeen years 
old, as formerly ; and it would certainly seem not unreasonable to 
insist that young men nineteen years of age who present them- 
selves for a college education should be able not only to speak, 
but to write their mother tongue with ease and correctness. It is 
obviously absurd that the College — the institution of higher edu- 
cation — should be called upon to turn aside from its proper func- 
tions, and devote its means and the time of its instructors to the 
task of imparting elementary instruction which should be given 
even in ordinary grammar schools, much more in those higher aca- 
demic institutions intended to prepare select youth for a university 

Nevertheless, the statement in the College Catalogue of the course 
of instruction prescribed during the Freshman year, and a slight ex- 
amination of the papers handed in during that year satisfied the 
Committee that the students were in this respect imperfectly pre- 
pared, and that a large amount of work not properly belonging to it 
was consequently imposed on the College. The Committee, there- 
fore, concluded to begin its work not with the methods of instruction 
pursued by the College, but with the methods apparently pursued in 
the preparatory schools which fit students for college. In order to 
ascertain what those methods really were, and what results were 
attained through them, the Committee requested the instructors in 


charge of the English Department to call upon all the students attend- 
ing the English A course, including special students, to write papers 
in the lecture room, setting forth the methods of instruction in Eng- 
lish composition pursued in the school in which the writer of each 
paper had been prepared for college. It must, of course, be borne in 
mind that where a paper of this sort is called for in a class the 
instruction of which takes place by divisions, those in the later divi- 
sions of the class will have knowledge of what is expected of them, 
and the papers handed in will to a certain extent have been prepared 
outside of the recitation-room. When, therefore, these papers, 450 in 
number, were sent to the Visiting Committee, Professor Hill, in for- 
warding them, notified the members of the Committee that, in the 
opinion of the instructors, the papers in question were calculated to 
give a more favorable view of the quality of the work done than was 
warranted by the facts. Three-fifths of those attending the course 
had already written about their preparation in English, their exercises 
had been criticised, and each of them had thus been shown how to 
make his production better in form and more interesting in substance. 
Accordingly, such of the papers as the instructors examined before 
sending them to the Committee, were found to be in their judgment 
decidedly above the general average of work done by those whose 
names were signed to them. The further examination of the Com- 
mittee fully confirmed the opinion thus expressed by the instructors, 
and proper allowance on this account should accordingly be made in 
connection with such of these papers as are included, in fac-simile or 
otherwise, in the present report. 

As already stated, the Committee received in response to its call 
some 450 papers, the writers of which came from no less than 
160 different preparatory schools ; a certain additional number had 
been specially fitted for college by tutors or otherwise. As the 
present report is intended to operate directly on the preparatory 
schools, with a view to elevating the standard, and, if possible, 
changing radically the methods of instruction in English Composition 
pursued in them, and as this result can best be obtained by showing 
what is now actually done in each and all, thus bringing the systems 
in use, so far as they vary, into direct comparison, the Committee 
has decided to pass the schools referred to in review, so far as it may 
seem desirable so to do, by printing as part of this report certain 
of the papers handed in, and further by reproducing in facsimile a 
number of the papers in order thus to show beyond question what the 
elementary training in the preparatory schools now really is, and how 
low a standard, so far as English composition is concerned, is set for 
admission to Harvard College. Of the total number of schools the 


methods of which were set forth in these papers nearly 120, or three 
out of four, were represented by a fraction over one student 
each. In order to save space, therefore, no reference has, as a rule, 
been made by the Committee to schools represented by less than 
three students, unless something in the papers submitted seemed to 
indicate that the system of instruction in English pursued in schools 
represented by a less number was specially deserving of notice. Of 
necessity the selection had to be somewhat arbitrary ; but it is 
believed that all the leading preparatory schools fitting boys for 
Harvard are included among those selected, which, again, fairly 
represent the whole number. 

School I. 

In this school, according to the papers submitted by the students 
admitted from it, the course of instruction is the usual one. The 
term is four years. During the first of these four years, three hours 
a week are devoted to reading prescribed English books, with one 
hour in two weeks spent in composition. During the second year, the 
time spent on English is reduced to two hours a week. During the 
third year, this time is further reduced to one hour a week, with about 
one hour in each two weeks passed in writing a composition, including 
the correction of sentences in bad English and the study of punctua- 
tion. Finally, one-eighth part of the whole school time, in round 
numbers, is devoted to the study of English. 

It is proper to state that in this, as in all other cases, the poorest 
papers only of those handed in have been used for purposes of illus- 
tration. This was necessary to accomplish the object of the Com- 
mittee ; for, just as the strength of a chain is measured by the strength 
of the weakest link in it, so, as will be seen in the course of this 
report, the progress of a class admitted to college is regulated by the 
qualification of the least prepared element in the class. In other 
words, the course of instruction of the whole is mapped out in view 
of the presence in it of an element not properly there, — the element 
described by Mr. Lathrop in the extract from his letter quoted in the 
earlier part of this report, — an element which has not received the 
preparatory training enabling it to go forward with advantage in 
a college course, and for which special provision has to be made 
much in the nature of a grammar-school department. 

Seven papers written by students prepared in this, the first 
institution referred to, were handed in to the Committee, facsimiles 
of two of which will be found in the Appendix to this report. (Nos. 
1 and 2.) 


School II. 

The following paper from one of the students admitted from this 
institution gives a fair idea of the course pursued in it : — 

" Although I received uo instruction for the entrance examination, 
at the school where I prepared for college, I nevertheless did consid- 
erable outside work, read the required books, and was fortunate 
enough to pass the English examination. The greater part of my 
time, however, was devoted to Latin and Greek and, as my reading and 
preparation for English was done wholly out of school hours, the 
time devoted to my other studies was ten times as much. 

Occasional newspaper work and the editing of the school paper 
gave me some facility in writing and certainly increased my meagre 
vocabulary. I have a fair knowledge of dramatic literature. Judg- 
ing from my work on the school paper and from essays submitted for 
prizes, that I was in tolerable shape to take English examination, the 
headmaster of the academy deemed it best for me to devote my time 
wholly to the classics." 

It will be noticed that the preparation of the student in this case 
was largely clue to occasional newspaper work and the editing of a 
school paper. This is an experience not peculiar to the writer, but 
one to which the Committee desire to call attention, as emphasis will 
be laid upon it in another portion of this report. 

Two students only presented themselves for admission from 
institution II., both of whom succeeded in passing the entrance 
examination in English composition. 

School III. 

In the case of this school, according to the papers submitted, the 
time given to instruction in English Composition, so far as theme 
writing is concerned, " varied from half an hour to an hour a week. 
The scholars wrote on an average one essay a week. Very often in 
addition to the regular work the teacher would give the scholars regular 
examinations, generally using the old examination papers of Harvard 
College. The time devoted to the study of English never fully 
equaled that devoted to any other study." Two candidates only pre- 
sented themselves for admission to Harvard in 1891. One of these 
failed to pass in English Composition ; the other succeeded in passing. 
A single page from the composition submitted to the Committee by 
the candidate who passed his examination is herewith submitted in 
facsimile in the Appendix to this report. (No. 3.) 


School IV. 

Two candidates only for admission presented themselves from this 
institution. The following paper submitted to the Committee by one 
of these students, who passed the examination, has seemed from its 
clearness and general excellence to merit publication in full : — 

"My preparation for the English course in Harvard University 
naturally divides itself into two parts, viz. : first, the work done in a 
seminary, second, the work clone in . 

"The work done in the preparatory school was very limited. 
Indeed it was almost entirely neglected. I never wrote an essay 
until the time of my graduation, and even that was done without any 
aid from the faculty. We had no regular instructor in English. So 
that I can truly say that I never had any direct training in English 
composition. We studied rhetoric ; but only as a theory. We were 
told what beauties of language lay buried in metaphors ; but we never 
unearthed any to prove to ourselves what gems were there. The 
students, feeling greatly the lack of the English department, organ- 
ized a literary society, and we met once a week for practice in extem- 
poraneous speaking and in essay writing. Of course, we were our 
own critics. I never wrote more than six essays during a three years' 
membership in this society. However, I did much extemporaneous 

" Whatever direct preparation I may have for the present work it 

really began when I entered . Three written exercises per term 

were required. The remainder of the work consisted in studying the 
principles of rhetoric. We spent much time in punctuating sentences 
and in correcting specimens of bad English. Then, too, we had a 
reading exercise. We read Christmas Carol and Cricket on the 
Hearth, paying especial attention to tone and inflection. We were 
allowed to choose our own subjects for themes. 

" Last summer I read Webster's Bunker Hill Oration, Old Mortal- 
ity, and another book. (I have forgotten the name.) I think the 
proportion of my English work to other studies is as one is to four." 

In this case, it will be noticed, actual practice was limited to " three 
written exercises per term." 

School V. 

Eighteen papers were submitted by students prepared at this insti- 
tution, one of those which send up the largest number of students 
for entrance to Harvard. A facsimile (No. 4 in the Appendix to this 
report) is presented of the first of the papers submitted from these 
students. The writer passed the examination. 

Another of the students, who also was successful in passing his 
examination, writes as follows : 


"The class had instruction in this study (English composition) five 
times a week. In connection therewith we were required to hand in 
written exercises at stated intervals. What these intervals were I do 
not know ; but I am sure they were no less than a week in length. 
It is more probable that their length was two weeks, or possibly even 
one month. This referred to what is called the Junior class. During 
the next year one hour a week was given to English exercises. Only 
once or twice, however, during the whole year was this hour given to 
practice in English composition. On those occasions we were re- 
quired to write a short article on some school matter, such an article 
as might be published in the school paper. In our third, or middle 
3 T ear, we employed one hour out of sixteen recitation hours per week 
in correcting bad English. During the Senior year two essays had to 
be written, which was all that we had to do that year." 

The following extract from the paper handed in by one of the 
students from this seminary has seemed to the Committee worthy of 
publication, as containing statements and suggestions which throw 
much light on the results obtained there : — 

"The opportunities for correct thinking, declamation and power 
afforded by the debating society ; and those offered for cultivation of 
a concise, simple, practical st} T le, through the columns of the semi- 
weekly school paper. These incentives, although uot offered by the 
school, are upheld by private munificence and school-boy enthusiasm. 
To my mind they are more efficacious in inspiring and cultivating a 
fluent and correct style in expression than the prescribed course. 
They afford an attractive, open, free field to the boj'S and they are 
not slow in entering it. 

" Besides these should be mentioned the emphasis given by instruc- 
tors to parallel readings with the studies, besides direction given to 
the best books and authors. 

"The one weak feature of the work is, not that all the ground is 
not gone over, but that the actual practice in writing, correcting, and 
criticizing, is not sufficiently frequent and unremitting. The founda- 
tion is laid for the student, but he is not forced to actual, daily 

Another student in the course of his composition writes as follows : 

"Professor , the head of the department, has for several 

years been making every effort to have a chair of English established 
in the academy and he now seems in a fair wa}~ to succeed within the 
next year." The Committee will merely remark that, judging from 
the papers presented by those prepared in this school, it would seem 

to be most desirable that the efforts of Professor in the direction 

indicated should be crowned with early success. 

Two other students write as follows : — 

" My Preparation in English. 

" I graduated from , but I cannot say that I had any prepara- 
tion in English there, though of course I did in the other branches of 


learning. All that I had to do in English at was to write two 

essays of about five hundred words each. These essays were to 
determine about the parts at graduation. 

"Before going to , 1 graduated at the High School. 

There, I had English twice a week, and at each of these exercises I 
wrote a composition. These were given back, criticized and cor- 
rected, at the next exercise. Between the exercises, we had to re- 
write the corrected compositions, and hand them in again. Besides 
these semi-weekly compositions we had to write essays every month, 

and they were criticized and corrected like the others. In the 

High School, I think that the proportion of my English to all my 
other studies combined was about as one is to ten. 

' ' I took the entrance examination in English to enter Harvard 
College and passed." 

" Preparation in English. 

"Perfection in systems of education seems yet an impossibility. 

Every school has its failings ; so has . And its weakest point — 

to confess the truth — is English composition. No one realizes this 
more than the management itself. Accordingly they have this year 

engaged a graduate of to direct the work in this branch alone. 

This ought to secure the necessary system in the study, which has 
before been lacking. 

"All (I think) of the last class who tried the Harvard examina- 
tion, passed it : but this can hardly be attributed to their preparation 

at . As far as composition itself is concerned, during three 

years at the academy, I had to compose six pieces of English. Dur- 
ing my first year, one composition was required and during the last 
one, two were expected, in order to decide the choice of commence- 
ment speakers. At one time, Prof. started the practice of once 

a week devoting fifteen minutes of the Latin hour to the writing of 
short exercises ; but owing to the scarcity of time this was done only 
once. During the Junior middle year some of the books required for 
admission to Harvard were critically read, and in connection with two 
examinations upon them, descriptions of certain of the characters 
had to be written. This is all of the work required in English com- 
position itself, but I think we received much greater benefit indirectly 
from the careful choice of words which was expected in the transla- 
tion of both of the classics." 

The following composition is printed in full, for it seems to give a 
tolerably clear and comprehensive idea of the course pursued in two 
institutions prominent in preparing students for Harvard : — 

"I began my preparation in English composition about six years 

ago at -School, Boston, at which school I attended for two }^ears 

and a half. I have not a very high opinion of the methods employed 
there in many of the subjects, but I consider that English composi- 
tion was given as much attention there and as thoroughly mastered as 
in any preparatory school in New England. 

" A subject was given out every month on which we wrote a four 
or five page composition. These were corrected and handed back to 


us, then after we had looked them over, the instructor, a man who 
thoroughly understood the subject, went through them with each pupil 
individually, explaining the reasons for the corrections. The sub- 
jects were such as a boy of from fourteen to sixteen }?ears of age 
could be expected to understand and write upon and covered as wide 
a range as possible. Two which I remember were, ' A Description 
of my Summer Vacation ' and 'The Exhibition' in Music Hall. 

" In addition to this we read every two months (as I remember it) 
some such book as one of Scott's novels and wrote a short abstract 
of it from memory. 

"After leaving I went to , where the nature of things 

seemed to be reversed. There a great deal of attention is paid to the 
classical studies and mathematics, for which the school is no doubt 
equal to any in the country, and almost none to English composition. 

Things may have changed now. (The step taken by the 

Alumni offering a prize for work in English having started a very 
good course in that subject during my last year.) But in my three 
years in that school, I only wrote three compositions at the most, and 
at present I can only recollect two. I do not remember that these 
were handed back or corrected. We all felt that the subject of Eng- 
lish composition was neglected, and were thankful when the 

Alumni brought the matter to the Faculties' notice. 

"In justice to 1 must say that we had in our second year a 

very thorough course in Shakespeare's Julius Caesar, and in the 
middle j T ear in preparation for the Harvard prize examination a 
sson once a week in Hill's Rhetoric. 

"I do not know the result of my English composition examination 
for admission to Harvard, for as I did not pass enough subjects to 
enter, that would not have been counted if I had passed it." 

Among the eighteen papers submitted by students prepared at this 
institution, two, in addition to the one (No. 4) already referred to, 
have been selected by the Committee to be facsimiled for purposes of 
illustration. They will be found in the Appendix to this report. 
(Nos. 5 and 6.) 

School VI. 

The following paper, though like the last, written by a special 
student who did not pass the entrance examination, is printed in full 
as setting forth an original condition of affairs altogether too common 
in the preparatory schools, together with an example of improvement 
which might profitably be imitated elsewhere : — 

" My School work in English Composition. 

" I was a student for four years in the High School. During 

those four years I was a witness to many changes in the mode of in- 
struction in composition. 

" I remember distinctly my first 3-ear's work in English. I look 
upon it now as a distinct failure. ' Composition day ' came once a 
week, and it was considered the most distasteful day of the whole 


week. On that day each of us had to hand in a composition on some 
simple subject of history or literature which we were expected to have 
written during the week previous. But most of us did the work the 
night previous to the day on which we had to hand it in. In what 
light the faculty held the composition work we never knew. But we 
knew that no one ever was ' dropped ' in it, no matter how poor his 
work. And so it came to be considered as a course that had crept 
into the school work no one knew how, but it had to be done and we 
felt that the course counted little in the general averages. 

" The next year matters improved a little. We had a new princi- 
pal, also a new teacher in composition who demanded better work. 
The class was divided into several sections, and each section was ex- 
pected to hand in compositions every two weeks. We wrote on many 
different lines, on matters pertaining to history, literature, nature, and 
ourselves. We were marked according to ability displayed. The 
course had a regular business standard in the school and the work 
had to be done. 

" The next year brought a still greater change. Another new 
teacher of composition awaited us at the opening of the school in the 
fall. At the first meeting of the class we were informed that ' the 
work in composition must not be slighted. I have been engaged to 
teach the work, and I intend to teach it as it should be. If j^ou don't 
do good work you'll have to take the work over again.' We looked 
at each other in dismay. She evidently meant business, and we soon 
found out such was the case. Our work was criticized in a manner 
wonderful to behold. Our papers were interlined and crossed with 
red ink to such an extent that sometimes we couldn't read the original. 
About every three weeks a composition from each of us was due. 
The line of work pursued was about the same as that of the previous 
year. We were marked according to our work, and our marks were 
always displayed in bold figures on the outside sheet where any one 
could read them, be they good or bad. I believe I passed with credit 
and was advanced to Senior work. 

" In my Senior year we wrote several compositions, and then as I 
offered myself as a candidate for prize essay work, I was excused 
from the regular work. Mr. each year offers prizes for histor- 
ical work in essay writing. I went into the work earnestly and was 
fortunate enough to get second prize. 

" The work in the last two years had vastly improved in the school. 
It had been put on a sounder basis of work. But the proportion of 
work done in that subject, compared to the other branches, was very 
small. However, the school has an excellent teacher of composition 
now, and the work grows better each year,. It is a required study, 
and a student is expected to do good work or not pass." 

School VII. 

Two students presented themselves for admission from this 
school. The following is an extract from the composition of one 
of them, who passed the entrance examination with honor : — 


"Last year I was at the School, ( , Massachusetts,) 

where, I believe, more attention is supposed to be paid to the English 
branches than is the case at other schools. But I do not believe that 
more attention is paid to them. There we wrote about eight themes, 
principally on the required books. The amount of time taken by 
them was perhaps an hour a month, very small compared to the 
amount of time taken by German composition, which was about an 
hour and a half a week. The criticism was quite thorough." 

School VIII. 

No less than twenty-six compositions were presented to the Com- 
mittee from students who had prepared at this school. One of them 
writes as follows : — 

" The time allowed for the study of English was three hours a week 
in school and a reasonable amount outside. Out of the three hours 
more than one hour a week was spent in writing compositions. . . . 
The study of English was considered just as important as other 
studies, although it was allowed less time than either Latin or Greek. 
We had Latin and Greek five hours a week each." 

The system now pursued at this school is sufficiently set forth in 
the following compositions from among the best of those sub- 
mitted : — 

" My English Composition Preparation. 

"At the School, at which I prepared, there was no specified 

time for English composition. We had three hours of English a 
week out of a total amount of twenty hours per week, but as nearly 
as I can remember we wrote only from twenty to thirty compositions 
during the year. 

"We were given books to read, and sometimes we were asked to 
tell the story of the whole book on one or two pages of foplscap 
paper. Other times the instructor would come into the class-room 
and give a certain character from a book to write about, sometimes 
giving a choice of two or three subjects. 

"We had other subjects to write upon, some of which were given 
out beforehand for preparation, while others were told when the in- 
structor came into the room, and had to be written upon during the 

" We seldom knew what was coming. I remember once when we 
were given five minutes to think up an animal stoiy, five minutes to 
write it, and then five minutes to review and correct it. 

"We were often given subjects from every-day life, and sometimes 
were allowed to choose our subjects. 

" The papers, at least my paper, always came back well decorated 
with red ink, and about the same system of marking the errors by 
letters was used as I find is used here. The criticisms were profuse, 
and were afterwards gone over and explained in the class, examples 
being taken from the class. 


" With this preparation, I succeeded in passing the entrance exam- 
ination in English, which was about what I had been prepared to 

" My Preparation in English Composition. 

"English composition has not occupied very much of my time in 
my preparation. Compositions have been written occasionally, but 
the whole number for a year would amount to only four or five. 

"Composition writing is left, in the School, almost entirely 

until the last year, and I believe they write one once a month. As I 
entered College from my second year, I cannot tell for a certainty 
about this. 

" Last year the compositions were divided into two classes ; namely, 
those upon which we had not prepared ourselves, and those which we 
had spent our out-of -school time upon. 

"We had English during two hours of the week, and generally 
this whole time was spent in the reading of different authors. So out 
of twenty hours a week, English had for itself only two. And, as I 
have said, composition played a minor part. 

" If I had finished my course, I should have had almost all the 
composition instruction that the school affords. 

" I took all my examinations in the fall and passed in English." 

Another student, who passed with honor, after describing the 
course pursued in the school, writes as follows: " Personal training 
had a great deal to do with my preparation. I wrote acceptably for 
the comic papers and the daily press, a training perhaps not neces- 
sary, but yet a great benefit." 

Two of the papers handed in by students prepared in the 

School will be found printed among the facsimiles in the Appendix 
to this report. (Nos. 7 and 8.) 

School IX. 

The system pursued in this school is the conventional system, the 
aim of which is to qualify the student to pass the examination in Eng- 
lish composition required by Harvard College. It is sufficiently set 
forth in the following composition, selected from those submitted to 
the Committee : — 

" Preparation for English A. 

"I was prepared at school at . We spent most of our 

time on Hill's Rhetoric, with a composition about once in two weeks. 
The subjects for these compositions were taken chiefly from the 
books required for the entrance examination. Some of these books, 
as 'Lord Clive' and 'The Ancient Mariner,' we read in the class; 
the rest outside. 

" The themes were corrected in the same manner as those in Eng- 
lish A, and were sometimes read and commented upon in the class 
before being handed back. 


" During the last half-year we wrote themes every Saturday morn- 
ing. Mr. , the teacher, was accustomed to select ten subjects 

from one of the required books, and we wrote for an hour on one of 
these subjects. 

" The time given to English was three hours a week, one third of 
which was composition. I passed the English examination as a 
whole ; I do not know about the sentences and the theme in parti- 

Of the nine papers handed in to the Committee by students prepared 
in this school, all of whom passed successfully the English examina- 
tion, one will be found among the facsimiles in the Appendix to this 
report. (No. 9.) 

School X. 

Papers from three students, all of them special, from this school, 
were among those handed in to the Committee. The following gives 
a sufficient idea of the preparatory work there clone in English, and, 
so far as a judgment may be based on the material before the Com- 
mittee, it can be accepted generally as a not unfair account of the 
work at other schools of a similar character : — 

"Preparatory English. 

"I was a member of the class of '89, High School of . 

I entered Harvard College as a special student, therefore I passed no 

" The name of the school from which I graduated might and ought 
to imply that considerable time is spent there in the stucly of English, 
but this is not so, for the instruction that I got there in English was 
very meagre. 

"We had little work in composition, until we reached the second 
class, when one hour weekly was devoted to reading themes* upon 
subjects of our own choosing, prepared out of school. We had 
perhaps one other hour during the week, in which we read Goldsmith, 
etc. I wrote, that year, not more than five themes. 

" In the first class, we also had one hour weekly for writing. This 
was the way that it was conducted. I would write a composition out 
of school and read it Monday morning. Then, the other pupils 
would have to write and read theirs before my turn came again, and 
as the class was large, it is obvious that I did little work in composi- 
tion. We had two other hours a week devoted to reading Shake- 

" English had to bow to Latin and French. We had daily recita- 
tions in these studies, the former for four years, the latter for two. 
The opinion that scholars held of English was : ' Oh, I can pass in that 
all right without any study.' 

"We would do our work, bring it into the class and read it, and 
the teacher would mark us according to the improvement made upon 


School XI. 

Twenty-four papers were submitted to the Committee from stu- 
dents prepared for Harvard at this school. The system pursued 
is fairly represented in the following from among the best of these 
papers : — 

"My Preparation for Harvard College in English Composition, at 
the School. 

"In the School, where I was prepared for Harvard College, 

the work in English rhetoric and composition surely does not hold a 
very important place in the list of studies which are required. 

" In regard to the number of written exercises which we had, I will 
state that it would be safer to reckon them in months than in weeks, 
as they averaged probably not over one a month. 

"Our first hour Monday morning was devoted, or supposed 
to be, to English in some form. But very often it was taken 
for something else which in the mind of our instructor demanded 
more immediate attention. However, we quite often had exercises 
in punctuation, spelling, &c, but these were usually oral rather 
than written. 

"During our last year in the school we were required to read the 
books mentioned in the Harvard Catalogue, and, after sufficient time 
had elapsed, to write a composition on some part of the work ; the 
subject was generally selected by the instructor. 

" This composition was read and corrected and finally handed back 
to us to see our mistakes, which we sometimes talked over with the 
instructor and often did not. 

"In answer to the question regarding the amount of time spent in 
English composition, I will say that three hours a month is an ample 
allowance, and that the proportion of this work to our other studies 
was very small indeed, in fact, hardly capable of being reckoned. 

" However, I succeeded in passing my English examination, as did 
almost every one in my class." 

" My Preparation for the English Examination. 

"At the School, preparation for the English examination 

began in the first year and continued, very thinly spread out, 
through the course. Each year we read two or three books required 
to be read, and twice a } 7 ear we wrote compositions on these books. 
Thus, for the first three years, not more than five hours a year was 
given to actual English composition, though of course the reading 
occupied some little time. 

" In my last and fourth year in the school considerable more atten- 
tion was paid to English by both teachers and scholars. The books 
we had read in previous years were reviewed, and new compositions 
written on each of them. These compositions were corrected by the 
teacher, and each scholar had his personal attention called to all bad 
mistakes. During the year we wrote possibly ten compositions, but 
surely not more. 


u One hour a week was supposed to be devoted to English, but it 
averaged nearer one hour a month ; for the English hour was often 
given over to Latin. A few exercises from Strong's English were 
read and corrected in the class ; this, however, was so seldom done as 
to be of very little aid to a pupil. In fact it seemed that the teachers 
thought every one ought to pass in English, and that ability to write 
well ought to come intuitively to all of us. 

"The proportion of time given to English was very, very small 
compared with the time given to other studies. This is especially 
true if the whole course is considered, for until the last year English 
was almost ignored. As regards passing the examination, every 
member of my class was successful." 

Another student writes as follows: "The work of the third class 
was almost entirely devoted to reading books, required themes once a 
month, and no composition work. . . . Throughout the year we had 
no book with the exception of one on the desk. Our themes were 
required once a month and the English hour was Monday morning, 
very often taken up by some other study. I passed my examination 
and feel that I was well prepared for anything that Harvard was 
likely to give." 

"My Preparation in English Composition. 

" I received my preparation for college at the School. During 

the first year, I studied composition from a text book, reciting 
on the subject twice a week. I was required to hand in a written 
exercise every month, the subject of which was usually taken from 
some book which I had read. The English work of the second and 
third years was much the same as that of the first. 

"When I entered upon the work of the fourth year, I began to 
think of the preliminary examinations which were to be held the 
following June. The teachers seemed to have the same subject in 
mind, and the only hour which had been set apart for the study of 
English was now devoted to Algebra and Geometry. 

" At the beginning of the last year I thought that English would be 
taken up more systematically than before ; but, to my surprise, Latin, 
Greek, and Geometry occupied nearly all of the time. Once in two or 
three weeks I wrote themes, which were corrected with regard to 
grammar and punctuation, but not with regard to style. I was 
successful in passing the examination in spite of my careless training." 

" My Preparation in English Composition. 

"A Harvard sophomore, formerly a member of the School, 

said to me not long ago, ' Do you know that fellows who come 
from our school seldom get an ; A ' in the Freshman English 
course, while most fall below ' B ' ? I tell you the way they pre- 
pare English there is wretched.' I am patriotic, yet forcible as this 
statement is, I had to agree with him and say that it was ' wretched.' 
I think I can make the relative amount of time devoted to English 
clearest bv a table : — 


"Latin, - one hour each day for five years. 

"Greek, " " " " " three years. 

"Mathematics, - " " " " " three and a half years (aggregate). 

"French and German, " " " " " two years. 

"History, - - " " " " " one year (aggregate). 

" While the English was given piecemeal in such a way as to make 
a course of two years in point of time, in point of relative efficacy to 
the other courses one quarter of a year. 

"Yet of these two years even, only three quarters of a year were 
given to real English composition ; allowing one half a year for the 
study of rhetoric, and the rest of the time for writing. When I give 
these statistics, it looks as though it was all arranged in compact 
form ; but by k half a year ' I mean, if you picked up the pieces and 
put them together you could make half a year's work. 

" I think I wrote about twenty-four compositions during the whole 
course (I completed the five years in four, thus doing away with 
something of what was useless). The character of the subjects 
varied in different years. Thus, in the first year, one of the subjects 
was ' The Moral Influence of Soap ' ; while later we wrote essays 
upon the different books we had read in preparation for college. This 
looks formidable ; but any one can write something about what he has 
read ; it all lay in the criticism. For, generally speaking, a composi- 
tion was written and handed in to the teacher ; then it was handed 
back with a few corrections for punctuation and paragraphing ; but 
never for style or thought or arrangement or precision. Sometimes the 
meaning of the corrections was explained, sometimes not. Yet I 
feel that I owe it to some of my teachers to say that they labored 
conscientiously to make us give thought to our writings. 

" We were asked about the preparatory schools. I think the gram- 
mar schools of do more for those who are preparing for college 

than the School, simply because their methods are more like those 
here at Harvard. 

" I think writing a little outside of school has influenced my Eng- 
lish ; at any rate I passed the examination for admission." 

"My Preparation in English Composition. 

"I passed the entrance examination in English in June, 1891. I 
was required to write about one theme a month, on an average, dur- 
ing my whole preparatory course. The themes of the first two years 
were on any subjects which the teachers might assign. During the 
last three years the subjects were taken from the books which I was 
required to read for m} T college preparation. One short hour a week, 
about forty minutes, was devoted to this subject in school, and 
about one hour or one hour and a half was necessary for study out of 
school. I used a text-book on rhetoric and English composition only 
during the first year. The relative amount of time devoted to English 
composition was about one twenty-fifth." 

Six specimens of the English compositions presented by those 
admitted from this school are included among the facsimiles in the 
Appendix to this report. (Nos. 10 to 15.) 


School XII. 

The system pursued in this school is set forth in the following 
paper, handed in by one of the four students from it, all of whom 
passed their examinations successfully. The Committee found the 

papers from the students prepared in School exceptionally good ; 

and more time, it will be noticed, is, according to the students from 
it, there given to English than to any other study : the work in 
English is almost daily : — 

" My Preparation in English. 

"The greater part of my instruction in English composition I re- 
ceived at School, where I spent seven years. There we were 

required to write monthly themes known as ' compositions,' upon 
subjects announced about three weeks before the compositions be- 
came due. These subjects were very varied ; sometimes they were 
taken from other school work, especially from our history, and at 
other times we were given ' questions of the day,' such as the ' Labor 
Problem,' 'The Anarchists,' etc., to write on. 

" Although, throughout the school, these were required but monthly, 
the amount required in any one theme varies, of course, with the 
class, and never exceeded three pages of a letter-sheet. We were, 
however, encouraged to write as much as possible, and those of us 
who became interested particularly in any subject often wrote from 
eight to twelve pages. These were criticized by the instructors, who 
not only marked errors in spelling, construction, and punctuation, but 
even made numerous suggestions of improvement — sometimes involv- 
ing a complete change in its arrangement of a whole paragraph. The 
papers were handed back to be corrected by us under the supervision 
and further oral criticism of the instructor. 

" Besides these monthly themes, it was the policy of the school to fur- 
nish as much practice as possible in writing English, and so the teachers 
in other departments availed themselves, seemingly, of eve^ opportun- 
ity for written exercises, which often were not previously announced. 

"Of course we studied grammar thoroughout the school and we 
were also drilled the last year on Prof. Hill's ' Rhetoric' 

"The training there in English seems to me especially thorough 
and to be deemed of greater importance, and hence more time to be 
given to it, than any other study. It embraced besides the above- 
mentioned instruction in composition, careful study of standard works 
of English literature, and drill in reading aloud from them, so as best 
to bring out the force and beauty of the style under consideration. 
This work was almost daily, and was supplemented by monthly 
abstracts of the most familiar works of noted authors." 

School XIII. 
Two papers prepared by candidates from this school, both of whom 
passed successfully the English examination, are printed amoug the 
facsimiles in the Appendix to this report. (Nos. 16 and 17.) 


School XIV. 

Three candidates from this school, all of whom had succeeded in 
passing the examination in English Composition, submitted papers. 
One of these will be found in facsimile (No. 18) in the Appendix to 
this report. It sufficiently sets forth the system there pursued and 
the results attained. 

School XV. 

One paper only was submitted from a student fitted at this 
academy. The Committee print it in full, inasmuch as it sets forth 
the system of instruction in English there pursued, — a more rational 
system, perhaps, than that pursued in any other of the preparatory 
schools brought under review : — 

" My Preparation in English. 

"The Academy, or as it is popularly known, the 

Academy, situated in the historical town of , has not for its main 

object the preparation of candidates for Harvard or any other college, 
but aims to give its pupils a ' liberal ' education, such as the sons and 
daughters of a farming community are in need of. 

"As a consequence of this, English composition and rhetoric have 
a very important place in the school curriculum. 

" The studies in this school are elective, except that English is pre- 

" The first year after a pupil has entered this school, special atten- 
tion is given to English composition. The text-books used are 
Hart's Rhetoric and Miss Chittenden's English Composition. Writ- 
ing themes is thought of great importance, as the school goes upon 
the principle that ' practice makes perfect.' English recites every 
day, with written exercises three times a week and sometimes even 
four. The subjects at first are the rewriting of bad sentences into 
good English, care being given to punctuation ; then the reproduction 
of poetry into prose or the development of some short poem into a 
lengthy prose narrative, special care being given to proper expres- 
sion ; finally, periphrasis with the study of words and essays on any 
subject. This completes the work of the first year. The second year 
of his stay at school the pupil keeps a journal, writing about a page 
every day upon any subject connected with his school life. No text- 
book is used. The third and fourth years of his school life he has to 
take part in the ' rhetoricals,' which he very often dislikes very much 
to do. These rhetoricals consist of speaking or declaiming pieces 
committed to memory, or the reading of original compositions. The 
rhetoricals are alternated with debates in which the whole school may 
take part upon questions, as the McKinley Bill, etc. The rhetoricals 
come once a week on Wednesday afternoon. 

"By the way, the recitations in English last one hour and the 
rhetoricals occupy from two to three, — that is, a whole afternoon. 

" As all the studies, which a pupil in this school takes, come every 
day, it is hard to decide which of the studies is of most importance 


or what relative time is devoted to English. I do not fear to commit 
myself, if I say that although English does not occupy any more time 
than Greek or Latin or the mathematics, because these are naturally 
so difficult that a great deal of time has to be devoted to them, yet it 
stands pre-eminent. 

" I passed in the English entrance examination, whether with credit 
or not I do not kuow. If my theme fails to show the effect of the 
careful training in English in this school, it is not its fault ; because I 
was not a re'gular student, nor a regular attendant, but attended it 
irregularly for only about two and two-thirds years." 

School XVI. 

The system pursued in this school is sufficiently set forth in the 
following paper, submitted by one of the five students prepared in it 
who presented papers : — 

" My English Preparation. 

" The school I come from is a preparatory school. This fact must 
be remembered, if one wishes to understand our preparation. The 
aim of the school was to prepare its students for the examinations in 
different colleges. In order to accomplish this the more thoroughly, 
the exercises in English had to be adapted to the requirements of the 
different colleges. Columbia, Yale, Cornell, and other leading col- 
leges require no special preparation in English ; so the matter sifted 
down, resolved itself into a preparation for Harvard College. 

" In the first place, during the Junior and Senior years in the acad- 
emy, the preparation in English was made an item of greater import- 
ance than any other branch. Not that more time was spent upon it, 
but that proficiency in English was regarded as higher than in any 
other branch. Three hours per week were devoted to English, and of 
these three, one was given over to writing ; another was devoted to 
the consideration and correction of the themes ; while the third was 
devoted to literature and rhetoric. 

"In the choice of subjects, although great freedom was given to 
the students, all the themes were confined to the works prescribed 
for Harvard College. If I remember correctly, the following were 
among the subjects last year : ' Silas Marner Reclaimed,' ' The Char- 
acter of Lord Clive,' ' The Ancient Mariner,' ' The religious element 
in the Ancient Mariner,' ' A comparison between the Portia in Julius 
Caesar and the Portia in the Merchant of Venice,' ' The Alhambra 
and its surroundings,' 'The Character of Burley,' etc. From this 
list it can easily be seen that our preparation in composition aided to 
no slight degree in our English examination. 

" The hour devoted to the correction of themes was indeed an in- 
teresting one. Our instructor attempted to allow the men to do a 
large share in the correction. He never demanded that a change be 
made, but tried by reasoning to show that some other expression 
would be preferable to the one used. 

I distinctly recollect one occasion where I was positive a certain 
expression was correct, and that the whole recitation was devoted to 


that one expression, until finally the matter was settled. It was in 
this way that our individual tastes and peculiarities were brought into 
prominence and that each student followed a style of his own in 

" During my last year at school, I had nineteen recitations a week 
and, therefore, about one sixth of my time was devoted to English ; 
but as I said before, in spite of the relatively small amount of time 
devoted to the English branches, proficiency in English was a marked 
factor in determining a student's standing. 

" Besides our composition work, we devoted some time to literature 
and rhetoric. Of the first I shall not speak, as it does not properly 
belong to my preparation for college. Our rhetoric consisted of a 
number of ' hints ' on the different rhetorical principles, a study of 
the figures of speech, and as a practical test, the correction of mis- 
takes in rhetoric and syntax. The sentences for correction were 
about as difficult as those in the Harvard examination. This was 
substantially my preparation in English for Harvard College, and 
when I took the examination last June I passed in my English. 

" I have not attempted to give any great care to expression in the 
above, but merely to give an accurate account of my English prepara- 

School XVII. 

The system of instruction pursued in this school is set forth in a 
paper submitted by one of the nine students from it, included, 
either as special students or as members of the Freshman class, in 
English A. A facsimile of this paper will be found in the Appendix 
to this report. (No. 19.) 

School XVIII. 

The system of English instruction pursued in this school, according 
to certain of the students prepared in it, is set forth in the following 
paper : — 

"I fear that the method of instruction in English composition 
adopted, or fostered, in high schools, is not one calculated to ex- 
cite a great deal of admiration. As to giving a description of the 
course, it would be an impossibility ; but I will say that the amount of 
written work required varies apparently with the disposition of the 
instructor. That is to say, there is no fixed standard as to the quan- 
tity of work to be done on the part of the student in this branch of 

education. Perhaps a year's course in the High School will be 

the means of producing one written composition in four or five weeks. 

"The character of these productions depends entirely upon the 
writer's natural ability. There is no discussion, no re- writing ; the 
criticism consists merely of reading the sheet over and marking a few 
of the most glaring errors. When this has been done, the student's 
production is returned to him (sometimes) marked anywhere from 4 
to 10, the grade depending almost entirely upon bare mechanical 


correctness. The science of word-choice and arrangement seems to 
be an unknown quantity. The character of the subject is usually left 
to the student ^ ^ spelling are 

OT acticaUy thfngs of the past in the High School and the natural 

result £ that tley are things of the future to most of the students. 
This neglect of the fundamental principles of a general English 
educatiom characteristic of high schools in genera , began to make 
Hself known with the introduction of advanced workin composition, 
and is in itself a disgrace to the name of education. 

School XIX. 

The system pursued at is set forth in the following paper. 

Six compositions, among those examined by the Committee, were 
by students prepared at this school : — 

" My School work in English Composition. 

« I began my work in English composition in my first four years i it 

. T two years I wai kept at this work, writmg a compos tion 

about, every Two weeks. Then my English course was dropped for 
about a vea 7 !-. The following year, when I was in the fourth form, I 
beg an aJaTn reading plays, and writing compositionsaboute^hree 
weeks • this was kept up till my sixth form year. When in tne sixtn, 
7 began regular English work: three recitations a week and three 
composition a montl The subjects at tat^o^^H 
«neh as ' Mv Christmas Holidays,' ' Football, A Ghost Story, etc. 
In mv six h form year, however, and also in my fifth, harder subjects 
wereeiven such as the characters of different great men, and descrip- 
tions of d"Cnt places, also comparisons between different English 
writers AU these compositions were handed back fully corrected 
Id with the work well criticized. Our time for these compositions 
S loout t hour and a half in school, and two more hour s t o be 
devoted to it outside. The relative amounts o time de ^todtothi 
«tnrlv comnared to the other studies, was small. But at— -in an 

onet'stZes even in Greek and Mathematics, the English of every 

bov I carefully watched and corrected. This is so even on the play- 

ground. Last spring at Harvard I passed my entrance examination 

in English." 

School XX. 
A single student from this school presented a paper. A facsimile o 

it will be found in the Appendix. (No. 20.) 

School XXI. 

The system pursued in this school is set forth in the followin 
paper from among the seventeen presented by those who had ther 
received preparatory education : — 


"My Preparation in English. 

"I was prepared at School, and received my instruction in 

English from Mr. of . We wrote one composition each 

week through the year, of about two pages in length. Some wrote 
more and some less. We read all the required books twice, the 
second time in review at the end of the }-ear. 

"The subjects were of wide range. Sometimes Mr. allowed 

us the choice of two or three subjects. Two of those we wrote on 
were ' Silas Marner's return to Faith ' and the ' Character of Burley.' 
The time occupied in writing the composition was two hours, and later 
we had to correct or re-write it. The reading outside took about two 
or three hours a week. 

"The criticisms were extensive and very cleverly done. A lady 
corrected the compositions. She was not sparing of red ink. Some- 
times I would get back half a page of it, not only improving, but 

" I think I devoted not quite as much time to English as I did to 
Latin and rather more than I did to Geometry, and I was neither 
efficient nor deficient in either one of these studies. I passed English, 
but received no honor." 

Two specimens of the results of this system will be found among 
the facsimiles in the Appendix to this report. (Nos. 21 and 22.) 

School XXII, 

But a single student from this institution submitted a paper, and 
the student in question was a special. The following extract is taken 
from the paper as fairly indicating about the average amount of 
training in English Composition given in high schools, so far as any 
inference on this head may be drawn from the papers submitted to 
the Committee, which refer to more than fifty such schools scattered 
over a wide area of country, though, of course, mainly in New 
England: " My work in English composition varied in its amount, 
the probable average being one written essay or composition every 
two weeks during the last four school years. . . . We usually devoted 
about one hour and thirty minutes per week to the written work. . . . 
The amount of time devoted to recitations, mathematics, literature, 
political economy, etc., was about three hours per week to each 

School XXIII. 

But a single student, and that a special student, of those who 
submitted papers, had received his elementary education at this 
institution. The following extract from his paper is quoted for its 
suggestiveness. The paper as a whole was remarkably well ex- 
pressed : — 


" Probably my four years in business have had a noticeable effect 
on my writing. I have had a great many business letters to write, 
always under pressure, and have gotten to sacrifice punctuation, style, 
and clearness for brevity and lack of time, and have grown careless 
about the arrangement of my sentences. When I try and overcome 
these faults, I am apt to go to the extreme : become vague and 

School XXIV. 

A single student only among those who submitted compositions had 
received his elementary education at this school also. His composi- 
tion is suggestive, and a facsimile of it will be found included in the 
Appendix to this report. (No. 23.) 

School XXV. 

The system at present pursued at this academy and its results in 
certain cases can be studied in the compositions of two of those 
admitted from it to the Freshman class, among the facsimiles included 
in the Appendix to the present report. (Nos. 24 and 25.) 

School XXVI. 

A paper presented b}^ one of the three members of the Freshman 
class who had received their preparatory education at this institution 
is printed in full because of its suggestiveness : — 

" My Preparation for the Harvard English Examination. 

" I was prepared for Harvard College by the High School. I 

pursued the so-called Ancient Classical course which covers four 
years. In the first year Latin, Algebra, and ancient History take up 
the student's time, while in the second year Greek is added and 
Geometry substituted for Algebra. In the third year, I had some 
English History and Physics in addition to the regular Latin and 
Greek. It was only in my last year that I received any instruction in 
English, and to this important subject only two terms of the whole 
twelve terms are devoted. The nature of our work did not tend to fit 
us for the English required by the College. In the beginning of the 
year we read a little of Chaucer, and then hurried through the smaller 
pieces and poems of the English requirements. The rest of the time 
was given to Shakespeare and Milton. I believe we read five of 
Shakespeare's plays and the first two books of Milton's Paradise 

" It seems to me that much more was said that would be done, than 
was actually done. We were to write a theme every two weeks, but 
during the whole time I handed in only two exercises and only one of 
these was corrected. The corrected one was on the Merchant of 
Venice and the other upon the Character of Lord Clive. 


"As a graduation exercise I was requested to write a theme on ' Do 
we hate England,' but this I never finished, as I took siek and was 
forced to leave school for a month. 

" These two compositions and a fragment of another were the only 
training I had in the whole four years. 

"The following is the proportion of time devoted to my several 
subjects. Latin, twelve terms ; Greek, nine terms ; Mathematics, six 
terms ; History, four terms ; Physics, two terms ; and English, two 
terms. German and French I studied under a private tutor and de- 
voted about a year to each of them. In spite of my meagre prepara- 
tion in English, I passed and am very glad of that." 

School XXVII. 

The following extract from a paper by one of two graduates from 
this school is also printed because of its suggestiveness : — 

" I am sorry to have to say not only for myself, but also for the 
school where 1 fitted, that the English work of those preparing for 
college was done at odd moments. There was a very fine course in 
English in the third and fourth years at the school, when Shakespeare, 
Milton, Johnson, and others were studied, but I was unable to take 
that course because my other studies demanded so much time. 

" The last step in my preparation for English A was perhaps the 
hardest, namely, to pass the English examination of Harvard. Not- 
withstanding that my preparation was less than that in other subjects, 
I passed my examination in English." 

School* XXVIII. 

The following is an extract from one of nine papers handed in 
by those who had received their preliminary education at this institu- 
tion : — 

"English came five times per week first year, three times second 
year, three third year, and two times fourth year. 

" I considered English in the High School my easiest study and the 
reason given by the instructor was that the requirements and examina- 
tions set by Harvard College in English were not as severe as those 
set for other studies." 

The following is from another composition : — 

"Owing to the amount of time required for Greek and Latin we had 
English only twice a week in our Junior year. It was not until this 
year was reached, that we considered English as important as some of 
our other studies. English never held the position occupied by either 
Latin or Greek, as is shown by the fact that while we had these 
studies as often as six times a week, we had English only twice. But 
this was partly owing to the great amount of preparation required in 
the languages for admission to Harvard. . . . The relative amount 
of time devoted to English composition was about one tenth, but out- 


side reading bearing upon the subject of the theme was required. 
The thought, however, must be our own, and this rule was strictly 

Among the facsimiles in the Appendix to this report will be found 
one paper in full (No. 26), prepared by a student fitted partly in this 
school and partly in School XIV., who passed his examination in 

School XXIX. 

A paper presented by one of the four graduates of this institution, 
included in English A, will be found among the facsimiles in the 
Appendix to this report. (No. 27.) 

School XXX. 

Four members of the Freshman class admitted from this school 
handed in papers. The paper handed in by one of the four will be 
found among the facsimiles in the Appendix to this report. (No. 28.) 
It is the least creditable of the four ; but the writer would seem to 
have passed successfully the examination in English Composition. 

School XXXI. 

The following paper, presented by the single graduate of High 

School included in the present Freshman class, is submitted because 
of the system described in it as pursued by the private tutor who 
finished the writer's preparation : — 

" My Preparation in English. 

"The first school which had any bearing upon my preparation in 

English was the Grammar School at , Mass. In this school the 

principal work was the writing of compositions, about one in two 
weeks and sometimes not so often as that. Exercises in the grammar 
were also an important feature of the work. In this school the 
amount of work was nearly the same as that in arithmetic, history, 
and other grammar school studies. 

"In the- High School a greater amount of work was required 

of us ; here compositions were written much oftener, usually three or 
four a month, while exercises to punctuate properly and to correct 
faulty constructions usually amounted to three or four a week. The 
amount of work in English was about equal with that in each of the 
other studies. 

" The year before I came to College, I studied under a tutor who 
did me more good than all my previous training in English combined. 
At every recitation he would give me a subject and tell me to write on 
it for ten minutes, beside this I had to bring in a composition every 
recitation. I did more work in English under him than in any of the 
other studies." 


School XXXII. 

More members by far of the Freshman class received their pre- 
paratory training in this institution than in any other of the 160 insti- 
tutions represented, the papers received by the Committee from them 
being no less than forty-seven in number. For this reason special 

attention will be paid to the system pursued at . It is described 

in the following papers : — 

" My School work in English Composition. 

' ' I prepared at Academy where the English course is the least 

important thing in the school work. 

" During the Middle and Senior years we had two compositions to 
write, one of these was the Life of Lord Clive. 

" Some times, perhaps once or twice a term, we had a written exer- 
cise in class, on the book we had been reading. Then we exchanged 
papers with our neighbors, and tried to find how many mistakes each 
made, without the least attempt to correct them. 

" The criticise we got from our instructor was hardly worthy of the 
name, for whenever any one asked him to explain something that had 
been marked as wrong, he was told to ' look it up.' 

u Two hours a week were devoted to English, but about two in two 
or three months to the composition. 

" English was the course that had the least stress laid upon it. 
Mathematics, Greek, Latin, G-erman, and French were held five hours 
every week, so the proportion is about ten hours of other work to one 
of English. 

" I read the number of books prescribed for the Harvard examina- 
tion, but I fear they did not aid my writing on account of having no 
opportunity for practicing. 

"The result was that, after long hours of 'grinding' the night 
before, I 'flunked' or rather failed my examination in English." 

" My Preparation in English. 

"When I entered the Academy two } T ears ago, some of the 

books required had been already read and these I had to makeup out- 
side. In my first year the writing of themes was very scarce. Per- 
haps once a month we wrote compositions on the books we were read- 
ing in class, but the attention paid to rhetoric was very slight, almost 
nothing compared to the work in other departments. In the Senior 
year practice in theme writing was increased and about every two 
weeks we wrote on subjects taken from the books we were reading in 
class and those we were supposed to have read outside. These 
essays were corrected and sometimes were read before the class. 
The subjects we wrote on were varied. The different characters, in- 
cidents, or scenes, or some time a summary of the whole work. In 
this particular we were allowed great latitude. I never found it 
necessary to devote any time to English composition outside of the 
class-room, nor, do I think, did the majority of the students. The 
relative time was very little, English being the ' snappiest ' course in 


the Academy and one which we never prepared for or took much in- 
terest in. In the examination I did not experience much trouble with 
the theme or the sentences and was not much surprised at passing." 

" My Preparation in English. 

"As I was admitted on a certificate from , I have not taken 

the examination in English, although I was prepared to do so after 
graduating from . 

" At Academy, very little work in English composition is done 

for a student during the last two years ; only one written exercisea 
month is required, and this is usually an outline or sketch of some 
book or play that the class may have read. 

"The time devoted to English composition at both and 

cannot exeeed one hour a week, or including the time spent in reading 
plays and books required for the college examinations, two hours a 
week at . 

" The other subjects occupy from thirteen to sixteen hours a week 
at both of these schools ; so it may be seen that English has but a fifth 
or sixth part of the student's time in class room work. 

" At University, there is no work at all in English during the 

Freshman year, and during the Sophomore year very little work is 
done, and the study of Greek, Latin, and Mathematics take most of 
the time. No preparation in English is required for the entrance ex- 
aminations. During the Sophomore year some practice is gained in 
English by writing monthly themes, but these are very often written 
carelessly and no permanent good in many cases can result. 

" It seems to me that more attention should be given to English 
composition in these two foremost preparatory schools of New Eng- 
land, and that stress should be laid on the quality of the work done, 
as well as on the relative amout of time given to the study of Eng- 
lish, especially at , more at and much more at ." 

" Preparation in Composition at . 

" I think I can best explain the work in written exercises by 
answering directly the questions proposed by the Board of Overseers 
in English. 

"First. What was the number and nature of written exercises? 
I do not believe that during my entire course the number of exercises, 
of whatever description, amounted to more than twelve or fifteen. In 
the preparatory year the written work consisted principally of para- 
phrasing, as laid down in Chittenden's Elements of English Composi- 
tion. During the Junior and Middle years, there were a few written 
exercises required, generally the same in character as those of the 
preparatory 3'ear. During the Senior year we wrote synopses and 
summaries. For example, after reading Macaulay's Essay on Lord 
Clive, we were asked to write a brief summary of the most important 
incidents. When we had read Bacon's Essays, we were given several 
titles from the essays, and were expected to write in our own language 
the substance of the essay we selected. In the same manner, after 
reading Hawthorne's House of the Seven Gables, we were permitted to 
choose from several subjects, such as Clifford and Phoebe, The Old 


Puncheon House, Hepzibah, etc., and were then expected to write the 
story as it occurred in The House of the Seven Gables. One young 
man, who ventured to make the criticism that he thought Hawthorne's 
depiction of Hepzibah, as an old maid, was faulty from the fact that 
Hepzibah did not have a cat, was ridiculed by the instructor for men- 
tioning something foreign to the character of the composition. 

u There is really no original composition required at , and from 

such a preparation we enter English A at Harvard, where a great deal 
of original work is required. 

" Second. What is the relative amount of time devoted to English 
composition? There are only two recitations in English literature per 
week, while the number of recitations in other branches will average 
five per week. I should say that the proportion of the number of 
written exercises to the recitations in English was about one to 

" Third. Did you pass entrance examination in English? I did." 

" After graduating from the high school, I took a two years course 
at , and there I received an excellent fit for Harvard in every- 
thing but English. Our course in English there took but two hours a 
week, while Greek and Latin each occupied four hours, with a great 
deal of outside work. We never looked at our English books outside 
of the recitation room, unless we had some poetry given us to learn ; 
and as for essays, they were almost unheard of. I say ' almost,' 
for about once in two months we were called upon to write an 
account of the plot of some book we had Deen reading. Our work 
in class amounted to little more than reading aloud either some of 
Scott's poems or of Emerson's essays, and a fellow with an ordinary 
reading-knowledge of the English language, or in other words less 
cumbersome, a fellow who knew how to read distinctly, could easily 
get a ' B ' and a good recommendation for Harvard. We had a little 
work in rhetoric during our Senior year, but with a teacher who made 
the remark in class concerning a word of doubtful etymology, ' It 
isn't hardly necessarily a conjunction,' our instruction was of little 
avail. Doubtless, our instructor was teaching us as well as he knew 
how. . . . 

"I was fortunate enough to pass my examination in English for 
Harvard. But I attribute this as much to my experience as associate 
editor on the literary monthly, during the latter half of my Senior 
year, as to my instruction in English received while there." 

Five compositions presented by the students who had received their 
preparatory education at this institution will be found among the fac- 
similes in the Appendix to this report. (Nos. 29-33.) 

School XXXIII. 
A paper prepared by one of the two students who received their 
preparatory education at this institution will be found amoung the fac- 
similes in the Appendix to this report. (No. 34.) The student in 
question, it should be added, is a special student. 


School XXXIV. 

This is one of the institutions considered most successful in prepar- 
ing for Harvard. The system pursued in it, so far as English educa- 
tion is concerned, is set forth in the following papers : — 

" My Preparation for English Composition. 

"We were obliged, at the School, to write a composition 

regularly once a month. But we also had subjects given out to us 
in class, on which to write short themes. Our general preparation 
in English was as follows : — 

"We would read the books, one after another, prescribed for 
College English, in class. Each student was called upon to criticise 
certain portions of the passages read. Sometimes, after having read 
a chapter, the class was told to write out during the remaining por- 
tion of the hour a summary, or more generally a criticism, on that 
chapter. Then again the students might be told to write a summary 
or criticism upon the next chapter, which was to be read at home, and 
brought in at the next English. These were not to be carefully 
written, but were to be read in class, and the class was to criticise 
these productions. 

" Once a month, however, subjects were given out to us to write 
upon one week or more in advance of the time the composition should 
be due. The subjects were greatly varied, but they all had some 
bearing on the school work in English. Several subjects were given 
at a time for us to choose from. We might have to write an essay on 
the author whose books we were reading or a criticism on one of his 
works. There were many other subjects of a different character, 
which time does not allow me to enumerate. 

"These compositions generally covered seven or eight pages. 
The}' were carefully criticised in red ink by the teacher, who used the 
Harvard abbreviations, were to be corrected and handed back to him. 
Our teacher taught nothing but English, and had our class in English 
three hours during the week. Latin and Greek occupied five hours a 
week, French, German, and Mathematics generally three. 

" I passed the English examination at Harvard College." 

" English Composition for College. 

"My preparation for college was at the School where there 

was a good deal of stress put upon English. We wrote com- 
positions regularly, once a month, and when the compositions were 
corrected, they were rewritten and improved as much as possible. 
English, throughout the school course, came three times a week ; of 
this about one hour a week was devoted to English composition, both 
to the writing of themes and to correcting and criticising them. In 
the other two hours there were usually rules and examples of rhetoric 

"The subjects were varied : such as descriptions of places, inci- 
dents in your life, and subjects which required arguments. The aim 
seemed always to be to have the student use his own thoughts and 
expressions, and not give him subjects which he could copy from 


books. Of course, Dear the Harvard examinations, themes were 
written on the books and the principal characters, like the themes we 
would be called upon to write. 

kt The criticisms were very numerous and as thorough as could be, 
the same mode of marking being adopted as is used at Harvard. 

"The proportion of English to the other studies was: Latin and 
Greek from four to five times a week and the other studies from two 
to three times. English composition, strictly speaking, came once a 
week. But in the other two hours of English during the week, 
matters were given and discussed in direct relation to English com- 

" I passed in the entrance examination in English." 

As a rule, so far as method is concerned, the papers presented by 
students who had received their preliminary education at this school 
are better than the average. A facsimile of one, as little to be com- 
mended as any, will be found in the Appendix to this report. 
(No. 35.) 

School XXXV. 

Five papers were presented from students who received their ele- 
mentary education at this school, four of whom had passed the en- 
trance examination. A facsimile of one of these papers will be found 
in the Appendix to this report. (No. 36.) The writer of this paper 

says that at School, "every paper we wrote from Latin or 

Greek," &c, was " brought as much as possible under the sway of 
good English." The examination paper in advanced Latin of the 
same student, prepared by him as a candidate for admission to 
College, is also printed, and will be found in the Appendix to this 
report (page 159). It is not suggestive of " good English." 

School XXXVI. 

The system pursued in this school is sufficiently described in the 
following two, selected from thirteen papers : — 

" My preparation in English composition at School consisted 

in writing about seven compositions during the year. These composi- 
tions were simply outlines of the story in each one of the books ap- 
pointed as subjects for the Harvard examination in English. I was 
also required at one recitation a week to correct four or five faulty 
sentences. The time devoted to my school work in English composi- 
tion averaged, I should say, about one hour and a half a week, per- 
haps less, and bore about the same ratio to the time spent in the study 
of Greek, Latin, and Mathematics as 1 does to 8. In addition to 
this required school work, I did considerable voluntary work, as I was 
elected into a literary society and was also made an editor of the 
school paper. In these positions I aimed at being a universal genius, 


writing, or trying to write, poetry, essays, and stories. Although I 
fell somewhat short of my ideal, I think that T was helped by this 
voluntary work more than by my prescribed work. I did not have 
very much difficulty in passing the admission examinations." 

"The time and care given to English in preparing for Harvard 
College is not more than is actually required to enable the average 
student to feel moderately certain of passing the English examination. 

The time given to this study at School is about one hour a week 

during the school year. In this time a large amount of the books 
can be read, but each person is required to finish all the books and 
write a composition on each one outside of the class room. About 
one of these compositions is written every month. The student was 
permitted to treat the subject in his own individual way. In a com- 
position on such a book as ' Lord Clive,' as a rule, the life of the man 
was described, as told by the author, while such a book as Hamlet 
was described not with regard to the plot, but the style of the work 
and the characters of the chief persons figuring there were told of. 
In other words each one wrote on such parts of each book as he 
thought were likely to be given as one of the subjects for the exam- 

"Great care was taken in correcting these essays, and advise was 
given as to' the best manner of overcoming the defects. 

" Toward the close of the year, when the examinations were close 
at hand, a few hours were given to preparation for the other part of 
the English examination. Old Harvard papers were corrected and 
sentences from books were also used, but to this there was not as 
much time or care given as to composition writing. 

"I think that all the fellows thus prepared at School passed 

their examination last spring." 

The writer of another paper says that in his final year at school : " I 
had very little prescribed work in English Composition, but I was 
forced to do a good deal of it outside of my studies as I was one of 

the editors of the School monthly paper." The paper handed in 

by him bears in its general character evident marks of this fact. 

Two facsimiles of compositions of graduates of this school will be 
found in the Appendix to this report. (Nos. 37 and 38.) 

School XXXVII. 

Of the papers handed in nine were prepared by students who 
received their preparatory education at this school. Facsimiles of 
three of these will be found in the Appendix to this report. (Nos. 
39-41.) It is unnecessary to repeat that they are not facsimiles of 
the best papers. They are merely intended to give an idea of that 
weak, because untrained, element in every class which has been re- 
ferred to in the earlier portion of this report. 


School XXXVII I. 
But three papers were presented by students who had been prepared 
for college at this school. The following, one of the three, is printed 
for reasons which will appear later in the course of this report. It 
clearly sets forth in the italicized words what, in the apprehension of 
the Committee, is the correct system of instruction in English Com- 
position : — 

" I come from a small private school where no set amount of regu- 
lar work in any study has been done ; therefore it is hard to answer 
accurately the questions about n^ preparation. 

"During the last five years I have read each year a large number 
of the prescribed books for the examinations of that year, and have 
written several compositions on subjects taken from those books. 
Some months I have written several compositions, others none at all. 
During the whole year, however, I think a good deal of work would 
be done. 

' ' The preparation of English was carried out in every other subject : 
my translations from other languages were carefully criticised for their 
English; my geometry propositions I have rewritten many times on ac- 
count of poor English. 

" I cannot give any statistics about the proportion of the work done 
on all subjects for this reason ; but I think a great deal of attention 
has always been paid to my English. Having only one teacher, he 
has been able to follow up carefully any weak points in my English. 

" I passed my examination in English." 

School XXXIX. 
Four of the students included in the Freshman class were prepared 
at this institution. A facsimile of the paper handed in by one of 
the four will be found in the Appendix to this report. (No. 42.) 


Among the facsimiles will be found one (No. 43) , by a student 
who had been prepared b} 7 private tutors. It is printed as an object- 
lesson merely, showing how slight an acquaintance with the elements 
of English Composition will enable a student to pass successfully the 
entrance examination to Harvard College. 


Another student fitted by a private tutor writes as follows : — 
"During this last year, while studying with a tutor, I handed 
themes in occasionally. English was allowed to go by the board, 
because of several other studies being more important, and because of 
so much time being taken up with them. 


I passed in the admission examination in English.' 



Another student, also fitted by a private tutor, who, not without 
justifiable self -congratulation, writes "I passed," presented a paper 
which will also be found among the facsimiles in the Appendix to this 
report. (No. 44.) 

In order, if possible, to avoid reaching a wrong conclusion as to 
the courses of study in English and English Composition and the 
amount of time given thereto, both absolutely and relatively to other 
studies, the Committee endeavored to verify the statements made 
in many of the foregoing papers by reference to the printed pro- 
grammes of studies in the schools or academies referred to. To a 
certain extent this was done ; though, at the outset, serious doubt sug- 
gested itself as to how far the programmes were in practice regarded, 
and the possible extent to which, under pressure of time, etc., one 
study might be sacrificed to another. Neither did such a process of 
verification seem likely to affect the results. These spoke for them- 
selves in the form and substance of the papers examined ; and, in the 
judgment of the Committee, it mattered little whether all the state- 
ments made in those papers were or were not correct, or in accord 
with the programmes of the institutions the systems of which were 
described. It is possible, also, and even probable, that in many of 
the papers presented, and in several of those printed or reproduced, 
injustice, intentionally or otherwise, may have been done to schools 
or individual teachers. All names, therefore, have been omitted, as 
the printing them seemed calculated to draw discussion away from 
facts to personal controversy. 

Finally, it was possible that the papers handed in, especially those 
facsimiles of which are submitted with this report, might not fairly 
present the attainments of those whose names were attached to them. 
To assure themselves on this point, the Committee caused the original 
entrance examination-books of the writers of the letters in facsimile 
to be hunted up, and carefully examined them. These papers showed 
clearly that the instructors in the English department had good 
grounds for cautioning the Committee that the body of papers pre- 
pared for it, and on which this report is based, were for reasons they 
gave "decidedly above the general average of work done by those 
whose names were signed to them." The Committee do not consider 
it necessary to increase the bulk of this report by reprinting in con- 
nection with it any considerable number of these examination papers, 
much less by reproducing them in facsimile ; but, in order to fortify 
the conclusions reached, they have selected a few of them at bap-hazard 


as specimens of the whole, and included them in the Appendix (pp, 
159-104). Those thus selected are written translations of passages 
from the Greek and Latin classics. They show both the educational 
system pursued in the schools, and the degree of mastery of their 
mother-tongue possessed by those responsible for the papers ; and, 
did space admit of their reproduction in facsimile, it would further 
be apparent that they are no more creditable in form than they are 
in expression. This body of evidence, corroborative of the state- 
ments made and the conclusions reached in this report, is still in 
the hands of the Committee and open to examination. 

The inferences drawn from the 450 papers specially prepared 
for the examination of the Committee by the 1891 students in 
English A have been further confirmed by the report of the results 
of the examination of candidates for admission to the Freshman 
class in June, 1892. English Composition papers were then pre- 
pared by 414 applicants. Of these no less than 47 per cent., or 
nearly one half of the whole, either passed unsatisfactorily or were 
conditioned. In other words, it may be said that one half of the total 
number of candWates for admission to the Harvard Freshman class 
who presented themselves in June of the current }^ear were unpre- 
pared in the department of elementary English for admission to the 
College. They could not write their mother- tongue with ease or 
correctness. On the other hand, out of the 414 applicants, but 
nine, or 2 per cent., were marked as passing the examination " with 
credit," as against 20 per cent, who failed wholly. 

Basing a judgment on the body of evidence thus presented, the 
conclusion which in the opinion of the Committee must be reached is 
that the system of instruction in written English now pursued in the 
preparatory schools is, almost without exception, limited to the 
requirements for admission to college. In that system, as developed 
in the material examined by the Committee, can be found only here 
and there the trace of an idea that the end of preparatory instruc- 
tion in English Composition is to enable those taught to write the 
English language easily and well, so that the writer may be able to 
use it as a tool familiar to his hand, as speech to his tongue, in 
the further process of education and in the subsequent pursuits of 
life. The Committee cannot speak of other departments, but in the 
matter of English Composition the scholar in the preparatory school 
receives, indeed, nothing which can with any propriety be called an 
education : he is trained to pass a given examination ; that and 
nothing more. The present system, therefore, is radically defective. 
The difficulty also, so far as your Committee is advised, is by no 
means confined to the advanced schools which fit for college. It 


permeates in another form the whole American grammar-school sys- 
tem. Some years since, for instance, in the course of the examina- 
tion of certain schools in the country towns of one of the counties 
in the immediate vicinity of Boston, the examiner, an official of the 
State Board of Education, made the usual inquiry of the scholars : — 
"What is the object of the study of English grammar?" The 
answer of the scholars was immediate, that it was " the art of read- 
ing and writing the English language correctly." The examiner 
thereupon told the members of the class in question that he wished 
them, having then studied grammer for several years, to show what 
the results of their instruction had been by at once sitting down and 
writing to him an ordinary letter asking for employment, — such a 
letter as they might, and, indeed, certainly would, be called upon to 
write at some time in subsequent life. The teacher of the school 
promptly interfered, stating that the test was one of a most unheard- 
of character, and that, in justice to himself, he objected to having 
his scholars subjected to it, — " They had not been taught in that 
way ! "* In other words, the children in this school had been taught 
to parse, as it is called, and to repeat after the mSnner of parrots 
certain rules as to gender, and subjects and predicates, and to dis- 
tinguish orally parts of speech. They had never had any practice to 
enable them to make use of their knowledge ; and so the} T could not 
compose a letter of the most ordinary character, or, indeed, express a 
thought in writing. 

The course now pursued in the classical academies fitting for 
Harvard would seem to be defective in a way only slightl} T 
different from the foregoing. The theoiy is, and long has been, 
that the proper way to learn to write English is to translate orally 
Greek and Latin. One great object of the study of the classics 
undoubtedly is to perfect the student in the use of his native tongue. 
Meanwhile, in not more than two instances do the preparatory schools, 
the methods of which have been described in the papers submitted to 
the Committee, seem to have adopted the ordinary and apparently 
obvious practice of causing the students to do two things at once : — 
that is, to translate their Greek or Latin and learn to write English 
simultaneously. It goes without saying that the classic, as compared 
with modern languages, are in their modes of expression much the 
more concise. An obvious way of acquiring the familiar use of 
good concise written English would, therefore, seem to be to compel 
students, as a daily exercise, to make written translations of por- 
tions of tho§e Greek or Latin authors in the study of which they are 

* Report of Examination of Scholars in Norfolk County, in Forty- third Annual 
Report (1880) of the Massachusetts Board of Education (pp. 132, 146, 158). 


engaged ; but, so far as the systems in vogue in the schools which 
prepare for Harvard College are concerned, the papers printed in the 
Appendix (pp. 159-164), while a sample only of the similar papers 
in the hands of the Committee, show conclusively that in America, 
under the educational systems prevailing in the preparatory schools, 
no attention whatever is paid to the rendering of Greek or Latin into 
concise written English. Now, as forty years ago, the reflex influ- 
ence on the student's English of translating Latin or Greek into the 
mother tongue seems, when subjected to a practical test, to amount 
to nothing. 

Accordingly, if the great mass of papers examined by the Commit- 
tee can be accepted as evidence, the rule seems to be almost universal 
that the difficult work of writing the mother-tongue is to be taught to 
a sufficient degree by having an exercise of an hour each month, or 
possibly an hour in each fortnight, devoted to it.* So far as writing 

* " The work done in the preparatory school was very limited. Indeed it was 
almost entirely neglected. I never wrote an essay until the time of my gradua- 
tion, and even that was done without any aid from the faculty. We had no 
regular instructor in English. So that I can truly say I never had any direct 
training in English composition." — p. 123. 

" During the Senior year two essays had to be written, which was all that 
we had to do that year." — p. 124. 

"All I had to do in English at— — was to write two essays of about five 
hundred words each." — p. 125. 

" ' Composition day' came once a week." — p. 126. 

"The amount of time taken by [themes] was perhaps an hour a month." — 
p. 128. 

" The whole number [of compositions] for a year would amount to only four 
or five." — p. 129. 

" A composition about once in two weeks." — p. 129. 

" It would be safer to reckon [the written exercises] in months than in 
weeks." — p. 131. 

"Twice a year we wrote compositions, . . . not more than five hours a year 
was given to actual English composition." — p. 131. 

"One hour a week was supposed to be devoted to English, but it averaged 
nearer one a month, . . . until the last year English was almost ignored." — 
p. 132. 

" When I entered upon the work of the fourth year . . . the only hour which 
had been set apart for the study of English was now devoted to Algebra and 
Geometry." — p. 132. 

"We had compositions every three weeks." — Facsimile No. 19. 

" One written composition was required from each student every four weeks." 
— Facsimile No. 20. 

•' One written composition in four or five weeks." — p. 137. 

" We wrote compositions once a week, the time for the composition was one 
hour." — Facsimile No. 22. 

" One written essay or composition every two weeks."- — p. 139. 


English is concerned, therefore, the grammar-school theory would still 
seem to be the one enunciated by Dogberry some centuries ago, that 
"to write and read comes by nature" ; while, in the collegiate pre- 
paratory schools another, not very dissimilar theory obtains, under 
which the scholar who passes hours each day in the oral translation of 
Greek or Latin authors, is supposed, when a pen is put in his hand and 
a sheet of paper before him, through some mysterious mental sleight- 
of-hand, to apply without practice his familiarity with the classics to 
the work of English Composition, — an educational process which is 
in fact calculated to produce the desired result in much the same way 
and just about as rationally as that adopted b}^ the gentleman who, 
proposing to discuss Chinese metaphysics, read up in the encyclopae- 
dia under the two heads of China and Metaphysics, and combined his 

Satisfactory results, except perhaps so far as getting boys through 
an examination and into college is concerned, cannot be expected 
from such a method. Its crudeness is apparent; it is in no sense 
education.* Indeed, there is not an instructor in any one of the 
academies, the systems of which have been described in the papers 
submitted to the Committee, who would not receive with derision 
the mere suggestion that the process through which instruction in 
English Composition is imparted should be used in the acquirement 
by a boy of a reasonable degree of facility in any outdoor game or 
form of amusement. To write English correctly and with ease is 
something not quickly or easily to be acquired. It is a good deal 
more difficult to acquire than, for instance, a fair degree of pro- 
ficiency in the games of base-ball or lawn-tennis, or than riding on 

" It seems to me that much more was said that would be done, than was 
actually done. We were to write a theme every two weeks, but during the 
whole [four years] I handed in only two exercises." — p. 140. 

" The English work of those preparing for college was done at odd moments." 
— p. 141. 

" I considered English my easiest study, and the reason given by the instructor 
was that the requirements and examinations set by Harvard College in English 
were not as severe as those set for other studies." — p. 141. 

" About one in two weeks, and sometimes not so often as that." — p. 142. 

"During the Middle and Senior years we had two compositions to write. . . . 
Sometimes, perhaps once or twice a term, we had a written exercise in class." — 
p. .143. 

" Perhaps once a month we wrote compositions." — p. 143. 

"About once in two months we were called upon to write an account of the 
plot of some book we had been reading." — p. 145. 

* "This neglect of the fundamental principles ... is in itself a disgrace to 
the name of education." — p. 138. 


a bicycle or sailing' a boat, or than skating or swimming. Yet nearly 
every boy from the academy can do some one at least of these things 
with ease, and a degree of skill calculated to excite admiration. How 
is this facility acquired? It certainly is not acquired by studying 
rules in treatises, or by listening to lectures on curves, equilibrium, 
buoyancy of bodies or science of pitching and batting. The study of 
underlying principles is here discarded in favor of practice ; and the 
practice is not at the rate of an hour in a month, or even an hour 
in two weeks, — the mere suggestion of such a thing would excite 
derisive surprise, — but it is daily and incessant. It is only through 
similar daily and incessant practice that the degree of facility in 
writing the mother-tongue is acquired which alone enables student 
or adult to use it as a tool in his work, — the way in which it ought 
to be used in the course of a college career. It is there not an end ; 
it is an instrument. 

What is English Composition ? It is the art of writing the mother- 
tongue. Not infrequently it is said that certain persons have a natu- 
ral facility in composition, while others are unable to acquire it. 
Undoubtedly, the power of composing, like everything else, is ac- 
quired by some much more easily than by others. But it is, in the 
judgment of the Committee, little less than absurd to suggest that 
any human being who can be taught to talk cannot likewise be taught 
to compose. Writing is merely the habit of talking with the pen 
instead of with the tongue. People are apt to forget that facility in 
talking is acquired only by incessant practice, — practice daily and 
hourly pursued from infancy throughout life. If children were taught 
to talk as the scholars in our schools are taught to write, what 
facility of oral utterance would they ever attain? Sitting in dumb 
silence, with the exception of one hour a month, or, in the schools 
disposed to be more thorough, one hour in two weeks, — as is now the 
case with written utterance, — the}' would ultimately speak English 
with about as much fluency and about as correctly as the average 
American college graduate now speaks French or German. On the 
other hand, if, as part of the necessary school discipline, the scholar 
were compelled to use his pen instead of his tongue for one or two 
hours a day, what skill in composition would he not attain? What 
he wrote would, it is true, probably not repay reading, just as what 
he says is, as a rule, not worth listening to ; but that, as a result of 
practice, any youth could be trained to express himself in writing 
with as perfect an ease and facility as he does in speaking, cannot 
well be gainsaid. » 

This would seem to be obvious ; and yet, judging by the papers 
printed or quoted from in this report, such a method would seem in 


hardly a single case to enter into the recognized curriculum or system 
of any one of the scores of schools and academies which now under- 
take to prepare youths for entrance to Harvard College. 

What is the result? That result can be studied in the papers and 
facsimiles submitted as part of this report. There are eight printed 
papers and forty-two facsimiles, — the facsimiles being nearly ten per 
cent, of the whole number of papers handed in. In the judgment 
of your Committee the writer of no one of those forty-two facsimiles 
had received adequate, or even respectable preparatory training in a 
branch of instruction undeniably elementary, and one accordingly 
in which a fair degree of excellence should be a necessary requisite 
for admission to a college course : for no young man who has not 
acquired a certain facility in writing his mother-tongue is in condition 
to derive advantage, such as he should derive, from such a course : 
that is, he cannot use a tool necessary to doing the work he has in 

hand to do. 

The College, consequently, instead of being what its name implies, 
-—a seminary of higher education, — becomes, in thus far, a mere 
academy, the instructors in which are subjected to the drudgery of 
teaching the elements. On the other hand, the remedy is within 
easy reach. At present a large corps of teachers have to be engaged 
and paid from the College treasury to do that which should have 
been done before the student presented himself for admission. 
While teaching these so-called students to write their mother- 
tongue, these instructors pass years correcting papers a mere 
glance at which shows that the present preparatory training is 
grossly inadequate. 

° As a result of its inquiries, therefore, and on the evidence set forth 
in this report, the recommendation of the Committee is distinct and 
emphatic, — it is that the College should forthwith, as regards English 
Composition, be put in its proper place as an institution of advancd 
education. The work of theme writing ought to be pronounced a part 
of the elementary training, and as such relegated to the preparatory 
schools. The student who presents himself for admission to the 
College, and who cannot write the English language with facility and 
correctness, should be sent back to the preparatory school to remain 
there until he can so write it. The College could then, as it should, 
relieve itself of one of the heaviest burdens now imposed upon it, 
while those admitted to College would be in position to enter imme- 
diately on the studies to which they propose to devote themselves ; and 
if, during the College course, they take English Composition as an 
elective they should pursue it in its higher branches, and not, as now, 
in its most elementary form. 


Presumably it may be urged by those in charge of the preparatory 
schools that the requisites for admission to the College have been now 
so raised that the schools cannot, with due regard to other and more 
necessary work to be done, devote more than an hour a month, or, 
at most, two hours a month, to a branch of instruction so crude, 
so unimportant, and so easily self-imparted as English Composition. 
The answer to this objection, if it is made, is obvious and conclusive : 
written English, like spoken English, must be taught as an incident, 
and not as an end, — collaterally. Exercises, especially in translat- 
ing the classics or books in foreign tongues, should be in writing, as 
well as oral, and the student would thus acquire by daily practice a 
facility which he never can by any possibility acquire under the 
time-wasting systems now in general use. The Committee have 
called attention by the use of italics to the statement of one student 
that in the " small private school " in which he was fitted for College 
— ' ' the preparation of English was carried out in every other sub- 
ject ; my translations from other languages were carefully criticised 
for their English ; my geometry propositions I have rewritten many 
times on account of poor English." The Committee see no reason 
why this most rational system thus said to be applied in one school 
should not be applied in all ; nor does it seem any act of hardship so 
to alter the present tests for admission as to compel the adoption of 
such a system. 

The Committee recommend that a sufficient number of copies of 
this report be printed for the use not only of the Board of Overseers, 
but of the Facultjr of the College, and the instructors in the prepara- 
tory schools. They would further recommend that steps be taken in 
relation to the standard of English Composition required for admis- 
sion to our colleges which shall compel the preparatory schools to 
change their present systems, and raise the standard to the required 
point. While the Committee are confident that this result could 
easily be brought about, the only injury which, apparently, could 
ensue would be to keep out of college, possibly for one term, a 
certain percentage of young men whose presence there now acts as 
a mere drag or hindrance upon those more adequately prepared. 

All of which is respectfully submitted. 


E. L. GODKIN, f Committee. 



Specimen examples of written translations in advanced Greek and 
Latin, from the examination papers of candidates for admission to 
the Freshman class, June, 1891. The passages translated are from 
Cicero's speech for Cornelius Balbus, and from the Iliad of Homer. 


No. 1. 

"Therefore, for these reasons he was given over from the state by 
Cnaius Pompe} 7 . The accuser does not deny this, but blames it. 
Thus the} 7 wish the fortunes of a perfectly innocent man, and the deed 
of a most excellent general to be condemned. Therefore the life of 
Cornelius, the deed of Pompey is brought (called) to trial. You grant 
that this man was born of a very honorable family in that state in 
which he was born, and from his } T outh up laying aside everything 
else, he spent his time in our wars, and with our commanders, and 
was absent from no task, no siege, and no battle. All these things 
are not only full of praise but also the peculiar traits of Cornelius, nor 
is there any blame in these things. Whence therefore is the charge ? 
Because Pompey gave him over from the state. A charge against 
this man ? Surely least of all, unless honor is to be considered a dis- 
grace. Against whom therefore? In actual fact against no one, but 
in the argument of the accuser against him alone who did the giving. 
If he led on by influence had gained over b} 7 reward a less worthy man, 
nay even if a good man, but not so deserving : if, finally he said that 
something had been done not contrary to what was allowed, but con- 
trary to what was fitting, nevertheless all blame of this kind, ought 
to be rejected by you, O judges. Now indeed, what is being said? 
What does the accuser say? That Pompey has done what was not 
allowed him ? This is more weighty than if he said that that had been 
done by him which was not fitting. For there are some things which 
are not fitting, even if they are allowed. But whatever is not allowed, 
certainty is not fitting." 

No. 2. 

"Therefore, for those reasons, he has been given the citizenship by 
Cnaeus Pompey. The complainant does not deny that, but demands 
it back again ; thus they wish the fortunes of a most innocent man 
and the deed of a most eminent commander to be condemned. There- 


fore the head of Cornelius and the deed of Pompeius are called to 
judgment. For you acknowledge that my client was born of most 
honorable rank in the city in which he was born ; and that from his 
boyhood he has left all his own business and, with our commanders, 
has been engaged in our wars, and that he has been ignorant of no 
toil, no siege, and no battle. These things are all not only full of 
praise to Cornelius, but also due to him, and there is no accusation 
in them. Where, then, is the accusation? That Pompey gave him 
the citizenship? Pompey's accusation? Least of all, unless ignominy 
is to be considered an honor. Whose then ? In truth no one's : it is 
at the instigation of the complainant, and of the man who gave it. 
But if he influenced less by favor, should bestow a reward upon a 
worthy man, nay even if upon a good man, but not so deserving a 
one ; if, finally it should be said that something had been done not 
contrary to what is allowed, but contrary to what is right, neverthe- 
less, Judges, all such taking back ought to be rejected by you. But 
now what is said ? What says the complainant ? That Pompey has 
done that which he was not allowed to do. And this is more serious 
than if he said that that had been done b} r Pompey which ought not 
to have been done. For it is something which ought not to be done 
even if it is allowed. But whatever is not allowed certainly ought not 
to be done." 

No. 3. 

"Thus he was given the freedom of the city a Cn. Pompey for these 
reasons. This, the accuser does not deny, but takes up ; thus they 
wish to condemn the fortunes of a most innocent man, and the deed 
of a most preeminent general. Therefore, into court is called Cor- 
nelius, (the head of C.) the deed of Pompey. For you concede that 
this man, in this state in which he was born, was born in a most 
honorable position, and that from an early age, having put aside all 
his own affairs, had been concerned in our wars, with our generals, 
that there had been a shunning of no work, no obstacle, no battle. 
These things are not only full of praise for Cornelius, but they are 
his own, nor is there any crime in these things. Where forsooth is 
the crime ? That Pompey gave him the freedom of the city. Is this 
his crime? Too little, unless honor must be thought ignominy. For- 
sooth whose is it ? By the true affair of no-one : by the action of the 
accusor, of that one who gave the freedom of the city. Who indeed, 
if heaped with favors, would have the less conferred the reward on a 
suitable man, so that even if it was not a good man, but thus it was 
not merited : if next it was said that something was done not against 
him and was allowed, but against him and allowed, nevertheless all 


blame of this kind must be refuted by you, judges. Now indeed what 
is said? What says the accusor? What is of more importance than 
that if he said it was done by him, that which ought not to have been. 
For there is something which he ought not, even if he is allowed. 
That which is not allowed, certainly ought not to be." 

No. 4. 

"For these reasons, therefore, he was enriched by the state of Cneus 
Pompeius. This the accusor does not deny but claims ; so they wish 
to condemn the fortunes of a most innocent man, the deed of a ver} r 
famous general. Therefore the head of Cornelius the deed of Pompey 
ma} 7 be called into court. You will allow this one to have been born 
in a most respectable station in this state in which he was born and 
from his very youth, leaving all his affairs was trained in our wars, 
with our generals was experienced in no labor, no uprising, no 

All these (wars) were full of praise and flatteries of Cornelius nor 
was there any crime in these affairs. Where therefore is the crime? 
Because Pompey enriched him with the state. The crime of this one? 
Least of all unless honor must be thought base. Of whom therefore? 
The truth of nothing by the act of the accusor who enriched this one. 
Who if having been lead on by gratitude should help the less worthy 
man with a reward even if a good man but not so wortfry. 

If in short anything should be ordered done not on the contrary as 
he allows but as he ought (to do) nevertheless every claim of this 
kind Oh Judges should be repudiated. Now in truth what is said? 
What does the plaintiff say Will it not have been permitted him to 
do what Pompey has done Which is more grave than this he said 
was done by him which did not behoove him (to do) 

For there is something which he ought not to do even if permitted. 
Whatever in truth does not permit certainly he ought not to do." 

No. 5. 

"For these reasons therefore he was presented with citizenship by 
Cn. Pompey. The accuser does not deny that, but seizes upon ; thus 
they wish the fortunes of a most innocent man, the deed of a most 
illustrious commander to be condemned. Therefore the life (head) 
of Cornelius, the deed of Pompey is called into trial. For you grant 
that this man was born of very honest family in that state in which 
he was born, and that, as he grew older, his own affairs having been 


left he was engaged in our wars, with our commanders, and that he 
was skilled in no labor, no blockading, no battle. All these things 
are both full of praise and appropriate to (lit. of) Cornelius, and 
there is no charge in these matters. Where, therefore is the charge? 
That Pompey presented him with citizenship. Is it the charge of 
this ? Very small, unless shame must be thought honor. Of what 
therefore? The thing being true of no one : (it being) the action of 
the accuser, of him only who presented it. Who, influenced by favor, 
he had made the man less favorable by reward, nay even if he had 
made him a good man, but not so worthy : if at length, anj^thing 
could not be said, and was not said against the deed, but ought to 
have been said, still every arrest of this sort ought to be looked upon 
with scorn by you O Judges. But what is said now? What saj's the 
accuser? Does he say that Pompey did what was not allowed him to 
do? Which is more serious than if he said that that was done by him 
which he ought not to have done. For there is something that is not 
proper even if it is allowed. But whatever is not allowed is certainly 
not proper." 


No. 6.. 

"But up, if you are courageous and help the sons of the Greeks 
cooped up from being destroyed by the din of the Trojeans. You 
will be grieved afterwards nor to any extent does the priest find evil 
in the sacrifice. 

But much before do } T ou consider how you shall ward off an evil 
day from the Greeks. 

O my lord, so your father Peleus commanded you on that day when 
he sent you from Phthia to Agamemnon. 

" O my child, Athene & Hera will give the reward if they wish, but 
do you curb your great mind in your breast. For kindliness is better. 
Withdraw from mischief making strife in order that both }'oung and 
old of the Greeks shall honor you the more. So commanded the old 
man and you heard him. But yet now also stop, and forbid grief- 
causing strife. 

Agamemnon will give worthy gifts to you ceasing from your wrath. 
If you do, now hear me and I will relate it to you, such gifts Aga- 
memnon promised in the tent, seven tripods untouched by fire, and 
ten talents of gold and twenty copper cauldrons and twelve strong 
horses prize winners, who win prizes with their feet. He would not 
be poor to whom these things become nor lacking gold cause of strife, 
such prizes the horses of Agamemnon win." 


No. 7. 

"Moreover Achilles lamented the father and then again Patroklos, 
and the lamenting of them went (arose) throughout the house. More- 
over when godlike Achilles had satisfied himself with weeping, to him 
from nis hair came sweat and from his limbs and immediately he rose 
from his seat and took the old man by the hand gray beard and gray 

head and and addressing him he spoke winged words : 

*'0 wretched one indeed you have many bad things in your heart. 
How did you endure alone to go to the ships of the Achaean s in the 
eyes of a man who killed for you many and noble sons ? There is a 
heart of iron to you. But come sit down on your chair and let us 
allow sorrows to lie firmly in our hearts allthough grieving, for not 
any deed is of chill weeping for thus the gods allot to wretched mor- 
tals to live sorrowing, but they themselves are without care." 

No. 8. 

"But rise, if you have been here and heard the tired sons of the 
Greeks speak, under the din made by the Trojans. Anger against 
yourself will be put aside nor is it possible to find and remembrance 
(knowledge) of the evil performed, or anger ; but consider much first 
in order that you may not ward off the evil day from the Trojans. 

Alas, surely your father Peleus gave commands to you on that day 
when he sent you from Phios to Agamemnon. (Saying) 'My child 
let Athenae and Hera give offence if they wish, but }^ou keep a cheer- 
ful heart in your breast ; for kindliness is better. But withdraw from 
evil planning wrath in order that the sons and old men of the Greeks 
may honor you more.' 

Thus the old man (your father) ordered, but you did not obey. 
But yet even now stop, and desist from anger, leaving grief to your 
mind. But Agamemnon is going to give worthy gifts to you if you 
cease from your anger. But if you do, hear me and I will tell you, 
what sort of gifts Agamemnon has kept for you in his tents ; seven 
beautiful tripods, and ten talants of silver, and twenty beautifully 
wrought garments, and twelve strong prize bearing horses, who carry 
costly trappings on their heads nor would a man be poor, who had 
such things nor would he lack much prized silver, so many beautiful 
trappings do the horses of Agamemnon wear on their heads." 


In the following facsimiles the papers of the students are reduced to one half 
of their original size. This reduction, as is usual in such cases, materially 
improves their general appearance. In examining them this fact, together with 
the statements on page 120 of the present report, should be borne in mind. 

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June 15, 1892. 

To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : — 

The Committee on Ancient History, Mediaeval History, and 
Roman Law respectfully submit the following report : — 

It is unneccesary to go into a detailed description of the objects 
and methods of the several courses of study that invite the attention 
of this Committee. A few points, however, may be noted down. 

The introductory course, numbered One, attracts a class even 
larger than before ; but this multitude, now counting more than three 
hundred students (of whom two-thirds are Freshmen) proves quite 
manageable in the hands and under the direction of Professor Chan- 
ning, who continues to have charge of it. At the mid-year the course 
regularly passes, still under the same instructor, over to Modern 
History, with which this Committee is not formally concerned. And 
in the second half-year of 1891-92 a course (numbered Four) has 
come in, so placed as to form, by way of sequel to the first period 
of course One, a suitable foundation for more extended study in 
Mediaeval Historj'. This also attracts a large class, which under 
the teaching of Professor Emerton has on its list at the outset one 
hundred and twenty members, more than one-half of whom are 

Few other changes, except as to time or order, appear to have 
been ver} T lately (that is, down to the end of the College year 
1891-92) made within the range assigned to the cognizance of this 
Committee. Ample and appreciative attention has been given in the 
department to Mediaeval HistoiT. Definite regard has been paid also 
to the period of transition to the Middle Ages ; but, bej'ond this, little 
that answers to the word " Ancient" has offered itself for two years 
past in the series of courses actually conducted by instructors in the 
department of History. An important course in Roman Hiskny was 
indeed twice entered In the list of studies, but only to be expressly 
omitted. It seems singular that necessity or convenience should 
have left so little definite room for ancient times in a formal schedule 
of historical study. The fact, that in a rudimentary way the history 
of Greece and Rome forms an alternative part of the outfit required 
for admission to the College, might naturalby enough have suggested 


some stable provision, if possible, for riper study in the College 
itself. The student, to be sure, has been regularly referred for addi- 
tional instruction in certain directions to the classical departments. 
Highly valuable as such collateral service may from time to time 
prove to be, the connexion with these departments is somewhat 
casual and uncertain. 

Looking forward, however, it appears that the scheme of study for 
1892-93 proposes to restore the omitted course in Roman History. 
Two new half-courses are added, at least one of which may well bear 
more or less on Ancient History. There will, therefore, on the whole, 
be adecided gain in this part of the field with which this Committee 
has had to do. 

Two or three variations of former historical courses lying within 
the scope of the duty of this Committee appear in the schedule for 
1892-93, and a few entirely new titles, including those already 
mentioned, are introduced. Mr. Schofield, whose way of teaching 
Roman Law has been found by the Committee an interesting one, 
now retires. His successor, Mr. Williams, has paid much attention 
both at home and in Germany to the stud} T of Jurisprudence. 

At the beginning of the next college year an important alteration 
in the organization of the department of History will take effect. 
The existing departments of History, Political Economy, and Roman 
Law have been fused or welded into one, under the name of History 
and Political Science, embracing the three categories of History, 
Government and Law, and Economics. This arrangement may 
necessitate a corresponding change in the designation of the present 
Committees on History. 

For the Committee, 

HENRY W. TORREY, Chairman. 



November 16, 1892. 
To The Board of Overseers of Harvard College : — 

The Committee appointed to visit the Medical and Dental Schools 
respectfully reports that : — 

Members of the Committee have visited both schools ; have 
attended lectures, recitations, and clinics, and have inspected the 
laboratories and museums ; professors and instructors have been 
conferred with, and the acquaintance of many of the students has 
been made. 


Several preceding reports of Committees to visit the Medical 
School have given information concerning the voluntary fourth-year 
graded course, and have invariably referred to the great importance 
of establishing a compulsory fourth year in place of the voluntary 
fourth year. The report for the year 1888-89 refers to this in the 
following words: "Your Committee reiterate their previously ex- 
pressed conviction, that more time is needed for the study of medicine 
as it should be taught to-day than the present course of three years 
affords : — that a compulsory four years' course is required to bring 
the Harvard Medical School to the proper level of medical education 
as understood and recognized at the present time, and, especially, 
that the stud}' of medicine must begin at an earlier age. This can 
only be effected by some change made in the undergraduate depart- 
ment of the college." 

It is our privilege to be able to report to you that this important 
change was voted by the Medical Faculty in May, 1891, and went 
into actual operation this September, so that, from the year 1896 the 
degree of Doctor of Medicine conferred by the Harvard Medical 
School will represent four years of study of nine months each, 
preceded by an entrance examination, with graded courses and stated 
examinations of each years work. Other schools — as the medical 
department of the University of Pennsj^lvania and of Columbia 
College — when first contemplating a similar step, made it contingent 
upon raising a certain sum of money or the expiration of a certain 


limit of time. The University of Pennsylvania has finally decided to 
have a four years course, beginning 1893-94, and Columbia College, 
the medical department of which is better known as the College of 
Physicians and Surgeons, has not yet decided to have a four years 
course. Seven years at either of these institutions will give an 
A.B. or S.B. degree and the medical degree. 

The Harvard Medical School has boldly taken this step, and the 
Faculty has shown that it has the courage of its convictions. The 
School has done # what it thought was necessary and right, without 
waiting for a suitable guarantee fund and without waiting for that 
change to be effected in the undergraduate department of the college 
which your previous Committee considered to be essential. The 
School relies upon the intelligent appreciation of the public for the 
support of the best in medical training when it is offered. In this, 
the Faculty has not, thus far, been disappointed, though it was felt 
that the first few years would be critical ones. The entering class 
this 3 T ear is a large one, the largest but one in the history of the 

The necessity for a four years course in medicine will probably be 
more and more generally recognized. If men can have both the A.B. 
and M.D. degrees they would prefer to take them, but rather than 
spend eight years in their acquisition many will probably take onty 
part of the academic course, two or three years, sacrificing the A.B. 
degree to an earlier acquirement of the other. This is indicated by 
the change in the proportion of those entering the Medical School 
with the A.B. degree. This proportion, the Committee is told by 
the Dean of the Medical School, is not as large as it was seven years 
ago, but the number of those who have taken part of an academic 
course before coming up to the Medical School is quite large. There 
were twenty-four such among those matriculating this autumn. This 
will be shown more full} 7 in the annual report of the Dean of the 
Medical School to the President. 

The Medical School has been, is, and probably will continue to be, 
self-supporting, and, instead of a burden, it is a very great credit and 
source of distinction to Harvard University. The School desires and 
requires money, and a good deal of it, to attain its proper develop- 
ment — we have yet to hear of a department of the University which 
does not. It needs large sums for the endowment of professorships, 
and smaller sums for the establishment of scholarships. There are 
indications that the receipt of such sums ma} 7 from time to time be 
realized. $15,000 were given within a year for fellowships by a 
living benefactor, $10,000 were bequeathed very lately as an unre- 


stricted fund, testifying to the l(yyal interest of a laborious physician 
who gave his life to the zealous pursuit of his profession, and some 
of the fruits of it to the School which taught him. 

Next to endowed chairs and scholarships, the School needs for the 
fullest and freest success of its clinical teaching a hospital, the 
appointments to which should be under its own control. For the 
establishment and maintenance of such a hospital a very large amount 
of money would be required. In the not distant future it is not 
impossible that some solution of this problem may present itself. 
However that may be, the immediate needs of the School are, as has 
been said, endowed chairs and scholarships. A school without the 
control of a hospital is restricted in the selection of its clinical 
professors. In other departments, the Harvard Medical School is 
already in a position to draw distinguished teachers from other 
schools, and has this year strengthened its Faculty- by a Professor of 
Pathology taken from the Johns Hopkins, and an Associate Professor 
of Physiology taken from the University of Michigan. 

Since the last report made to this Board, summer courses of study 
have been established by the School in many branches of practical 
and scientific medicine. The clinical courses were given at the 
hospitals and dispensaries of the city by the physicians and surgeons 
on dut}\ Practical instruction was also given in several of the 
laboratories at the School by the instructors in charge. These 
courses were open to both graduates and students in medicine. 
Forty-one such courses were offered during the past summer. Occa- 
sional courses are also offered to graduates during the winter months. 

The amount of clinical instruction has been largely increased in 
the last two or three years, and previous criticisms in regard to this 
particular are much less applicable. The clinical instruction at the 
Harvard Medical School now compares very favorably in all depart- 
ments of clinical medicine, whether as to quantity or qualit}', with 
that to be found at any other centre of medical education in this 
country. The laborator}^ instruction was previously acknowledged to 
be, and continues to be, excellent. The Faculty has constant^ 
added to the number of teachers giving instruction under the auspices 
of the School, and in this way some of the benefits of the extra-mural 
system are secured. No less than forty-three teachers contribute to 
the instruction given at the School at the present time. This large 
corps of teachers, notwithstanding that many of them receive very 
meagre salaries, and the maintenance of laboratories make the sup- 
port of a good medical school so expensive in comparison with other 
departments of a university — with a law school for instance. 


Your Committee regrets that there is no Professor of Therapeutics. 
So important a department should not be left permanently without a 
head. At the same time, it is doubtless better to wait the advent of 
the right man rather than to appoint someone merely that there may 
be such a professor. 

The new Sears building, the gift of a graduate of the School, 
which provides admirable laboratories for research and instruction 
in pathology and bacteriology, has now been occupied for two 
y ears. Much may be expected from the facilities which it affords 
for the pursuit of those branches of medical science to which it is 

In general the teachers of the School are serious, earnest, devoted, 
and highly competent. If your Committee were to make any criticism 
it would be to suggest that the manner of presenting a subject is only 
second in importance to the matter. Medical men do not, as a rule, 
study the art of speaking; but training w ' in those arts which are 
indispensable in a democracy for gaining a just influence over the 
public mind and conscience," to which reference was made in a recent 
report of the President of the University, is not to be neglected as 
contributing much to the usefulness of the successful teacher. 


The Dental School has still further raised the standard of its course 
by requiring an attendance of three full years. Time spent with a 
practising dentist outside of the School is no longer accepted as part 
of the school course. The entering class is not quite as large as last 
year, perhaps on account of this change, but it is not thought that 
this will continue to be the case, as the value of the degree will meet 
with increasing recognition. There are fifty-four students in attend- 
ance this year. 

The situation of the school building is not a very favorable one, 
and the building itself does not now, and will not in the future, afford 
the space and the convenience desired by the instructors for the best 
results of their self-sacrificing work. With the cooperation of the 
Alumni Association, modelled after those of the Law and Medical 
Schools, the Faculty have under consideration a plan for raising 
between one and two hundred thousand dollars for a new building to 
be erected somewhere on the Back Bay. About twelve thousand 
dollars have already been contributed by one donor. Good work is 
now being done by the School, but still better work would be done 
with increased facilities. 


The words with which Dr. Shepard closed his address at the twen- 
tieth aniversary of the Dental School are no less true now than then : 
"This school has a double claim upon the public; first, as a trust- 
worthy place of education for a profession which is now recognized as 
indispensable ; and, secondly, as a charity which, like hospitals, 
infirmaries, and dispensaries, ministers to the suffering poor." 

G. V. L. MEYER. 



To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : — 

As it has been determined by the Board to consolidate the separate 
Visiting Committees on Greek and on Latin into a general committee 
on The Classical Department, this seems to be a suitable occasion for 
the outgoing Committee on Greek to present a brief final report, con- 
trasting in a general way certain particulars in which the present 
methods of instruction in Greek at Harvard differ from the ancient 
practice, and giving a succinct account of what the actual system is. 
It will not be necessary to dwell upon any evils or short-comings of 
the old system from the student's standpoint, as they were exhaus- 
tively illustrated some ten 3 T ears ago in Mr. Adams' <£. B. K. address. 
Only those, however, who were directly concerned with the instruc- 
tion, given or attempted, could know of the discouraging influence of 
former conditions upon the teacher. How was it possible for any 
high standard of scholarship, anything better than bare mediocrity, to 
be expected of the student, when a whole class was held in check by 
the dead weight of all its dull and lazy members ? When the instruc- 
tor's mind was distracted by a conscientious effort to assign a just 
mark for each individual performance of the student, how must the 
freedom and the stimulating power of his teaching, of necessity, have 
been impaired ! As the teacher's function was mainly restricted to 
hearing lessons, it is not strange that the lessons were speedily for- 
gotten by the student. What a sheer waste of time was the whole 
business for both ! In the judgment of my classmate, Professor 
Goodwin, in which I fully concur, in our time fully three quarters of 
the recitation hour was wasted, for the better scholars, in hearing those 
who knew nothing of a subject attempt to talk about it. 

The first step, accordingly, in the great reform that has been 
wrought in the college system, so far as the methods of instruction in 
Greek are concerned, was taken, when the custom of giving a mark 
for each recitation was abolished, and written examinations were 
substituted to ascertain the student's progress. The results of these 
examinations were made the basis of college rank, and the passing of 
them satisfactorily became the decisive test whether any particular 
.study was to count towards the student's obtaining a degree. B} r 
this method the neglect of study was no longer punished directly, 
but simply became a hindrance to attaining a degree, and successful 
shirking of the daily work ceased to be attractive. 


But the complete application of this principle could not be made so 
long as most of the college studies continued to be required ones, and 
thus the way was directly paved for the introduction of the elective 
svstem, the final cause of all the improvement in the method of teach- 
ing Greek. At once all parties felt themselves emancipated. The 
ill-prepared, incompetent, or lazy student could attempt some course 
which he believed to be easier. The conscientious student might 
devote himself to whatever subject he believed to be more for his 
future advantage than Greek. While the teacher, at last, could give 
his whole time and strength to lending the best assistance in his power 
to those who were really striving to learn, and to helping them to 
understand the immediate subject of his instruction. The old fashion 
of parading unreal knowledge in the recitation room came to an end. 
In its place the student asks questions as well as answers them, and 
ioins in the discussion of the topic in hand. The greatest advantage, 
however, made possible by the elective system, has been the mult.phca- 
tion of courses, especially in the higher branches of learning, and the 
consequent reduction in size of the classes receiving instruction to- 
eether By this the personal influence of the teacher is brought to 
bear directly upon the pupil, and intercourse between them is greatly 
facilitated. No subject of instruction in the college has been more 
benefited by this change than Greek and in consequence the standard 
of scholarship in that language has been greatly elevated. To ac- 
complish this, of course, has required a large increase in the teaching 
force, rendered possible by the steady growth of the resources of the 
college When Greek and Latin were both required five 
teachers sufficed for both. Now there are three professors of Greek, 
three professors of Latin, a professor of Classical Philology, an 
assistant professor of Greek and Latin, an instructor in Greek and 
Latin a tutor and two instructors in Latin, and an instructor in 
Gree k -thirteen in all. Whereas formerly one regular course in 
Greek and one in Latin was provided for each of the four classes, now 
twenty-two full courses, and nineteen half courses, of various grades, 
are offered to all who are competent to take them. 

There are four essential particulars in which the modern system of 
instruction in Greek at Harvard will be found to differ from the old 

™ 2%*,' fa the introduction of the practice of reading an author at 
si<*ht, in order to insure a real command of the language. 

Secondly, As a result of this, in the establishment of courses of 
reading which include the entire works, or large portions, of an 
author, -mainly from the point of view of literature. 

Thirdly, In a better coordination of the different courses of instruc- 
tion, so that the various authors may be read with a wider scope 

Fourthly, in the attention now given to subjects, winch, although 


they are a direct means of interpretation of the authors read, never- 
theless are pursued as topics distinct in themselves, such as ancient 
philosophy, antiquities, and the like. 

A little more of detail under each of these heads will perhaps be 
advisable to make the advantages of the present method more plainly 

I. About eighteen years ago the practice was introduced of requir- 
ing members of the Freshman class to read at sight a passage of 
Homer not previously studied. This was read aloud, in the original, 
without translation, and, if it was not thoroughly understood, was 
read a second, or a third time, if necessary, before any assistance was 
rendered by the instructor. This course was pursued, until event- 
ually from fifty to a hundred and fifty verses were read at each lesson. 
The same method was carried into the Sophomore and Junior classes, 
and large amounts of Xenophon and Herodotus were read. It was 
continued in all the upper courses, until such a habit of reading had 
become familiar to the student, and it was only discontinued when 
found to be no longer necessary. The student had learned to read 
an author, depending first upon his own resources, before turning to 
lexicons and other subsidiary means of information. Practically it is 
found that a much larger amount of Greek is read now than under 
the old system. 

II. Up to some ten years ago the undergraduate courses in Greek, 
following the traditional college method, were all, with one exception, 
composite courses, made up of portions of several different authors. 
To this method there is this objection that no sooner has the student 
begun to grasp an author's manner, and to acquire some insight into 
his literary style, than he is shifted into another, and compelled to 
begin the process de novo. Its advantages consist in familiarizing 
the student in some degree with many masters of style. At the pre- 
sent time as the result of the increased power of reading now acquired 
by the student, in addition to such composite courses others are given 
covering the entire works of authors, such as Aristophanes or Aes- 
chylus, and it is intended to extend these so as to include all the plays 
of Sophocles and Euripides. This would represent the highest attain- 
ment aimed at in the amount of reading by the new methods. But 
there are also courses in which large portions of an author's works, 
like Homer, or sets of authors, such as the Greek Lyric Poets, are 

III. There is now a regular progression in the courses in Greek, 
both in reading and in composition, during the first three years. To 
take the courses in reading, by those who have offered at admission 
only elementary Greek, small amounts of Herodotus are read and the 
Iliad is begun. By those who have passed at admission in advanced 
Greek, and by Sophomores sufficiently prepared, the study of Homer 


is continued, a beginning is made of the study of Athenian oratory 
and the drama, and the student is introduced to the works of Plato, 
and to a knowledge of the character of Socrates. This represents 
the regular course in Greek formerly required in the Freshman Year. 
To candidates for Second-Year honors in Classics instruction is given, 
partly by recitation and partly by lectures illustrated by the stereop- 
ticon in representative works of the three great dramatic poets, and 
in some interesting portion of Greek history, as narrated by Thucy- 
dides The first half of the third year is devoted to the study in 
detail of Greek oratory and of the career of Demosthenes, with illus- 
trative reading. The second half is given to a more exclusively 
literary study of the Greek drama. During this year special reports 
are called for from the student upon topics suggested by the work of 
the course, literary, historical, biographical, and so forth. 

For candidates for Final Honors in Classics special courses are 
provided, which it is unnecessary to specify. 

In all the courses of reading at present it is possible for the in- 
structor to take a much wider outlook than was in his power formerly. 
He is no longer confined to a simple catechising on the mere elements 
of a subject, but can deal systematically, chiefly by means of lectures, 
with its' larger aspects, whether of literary criticism, history, philo- 
sophy, antiquities, or the like. 

IV Fifteen years ago twenty lectures on Classical Literature were 
given to the Freshman Class. There was also a course in Compara- 
tive Philoloo-y ; one in which Greek Philosophy was especially studied ; 
and one on Homeric Philology. This was all the instruction given at 
Harvard at that time in Classical Philology. Now an introductory 
course of forty lectures in Classical Philology is given to Freshmen 
and Sophomores. There are five courses in Greek for undergradu- 
ates and graduates. For graduates there is besides the Seminary of 
Classical Philology, and six additional courses in Greek Among 
the various subjects treated in these different courses, although not 
necessarily all in the same year, are the following : -ancient philo- 
sophy, political and literary history, religion, life and manners art 
and archeology, comparative philology, scientific grammar and dia- 
lects, epigraphy, pateontography and others. 

Finally the Classical Seminary has been established for the special 
technical training of classical teachers, particular in methods of 
research. It is resorted to by graduates of many other colleges, and 
even by those who have already been teachers in them. 
For the Committee, 





To the Board of Overseers of Harvard University : — 

The Committee on the Museum of Comparative Zoology naturally 
does not include within its duties any report upon the extension of 
that building to provide for the departments of botanj* and mineral- 
ogy, the whole structure being denominated the University Museum. 
The department of geology, which forms an integral part of the 
Museum of Comparative Zoology, not only is itself cramped into too 
small a space, but encroaches upon room needed for the zoological 
department, beside endangering the collections by the dust and dirt 
incident to a large crowd of students. 

A calculation of the probable rate of growth of the university, when 
provisions were made for the departments of zoology and geology, 
made the present building large enough for the needs of more than 
half a generation. It is already so crowded, that students in the 
higher branches of zoology must be turned away for want of room, 
and the classes in geology are too large to be properly accommo- 

It appears to the Committee to be necessary, in the near future, at 
least, and now, if possible, to extend the University Museum, at an 
expense of about $100,000, so that the department of geology can be 
thereby provided with sufficient space, including larger lecture rooms 
than those now in use, and in order that the Museum of Comparative 
Zoology proper may be reserved for the zoological department alone, 
including, of course, the rooms open to the public, to which has been 
added, since the last report of the Committee, the collection of South 
American fossil Vertebrates, now mounted and on exhibition. 

Twenty years of generosity on the part of the curator of the Mu- 
seum, and more than twenty years of devotion to science, in which he 
has been ably seconded by his fellow-workers in the Museum, have 
given to the University a collection, in many respects unrivalled in 
any part of the world, and have built up a Museum, the plan of which 
has been imitated in all the leading museums of like character in 

The publications of the Museum, as well as the work done there, 
have added greatly to the reputation of the University, and cover. 


beside the annual reports of the curator, since 1859, twenty-two 
volumes of bulletins of one hundred and sixty numbers, and seventeen 
quarto volumes of memoirs, of the greatest scientific value. _ There 
are, also, in press partly, the Reports of the Dredging operations^ 
the "Blake" in 1877, 1878, 1879 and 1880, and those of the Alba- 
tross Exhibtion of 1891, both in charge of Mr. Agassiz, which each 
include twenty-three monographs by experts. The cost of pubhcation 
of the Reports of the Albatross Expedition alone, with illustration, 
will be about $50,000, for which we are not called upon to provide. 

Since 1887, the private munificence by which the University has 
reaped such vast material benefits and gained so much well-earned 
fame, has been directed, in great part, to other and more pressing 
needs of scientific research; and the generosity upon which the 
University has so long depended must be supplemented from other 
sources, or we must see Chicago, New York, Baltimore and Washing- 
ton soon taking the lead in original investigation and such purely 
scientific work as could be better done in Cambridge, and drawing 
to themselves bright, young, scientific men, who would do cred.t to 
our University by carrying on their investigations here. 

The Committee finds that we have to do with needs of two classes : 
first, on the part of the Museum ; second, on the part of the Oniver- 

SI The first need of the Museum is an aquarium and vivarium, for 
which there is ample room in the basement story, for the use of 
students in the zoological department. This will probably require an 
endowment of $50,000, to include the salary of an assistant. But a 
first expenditure of $5,000, and thereafter $1,500 a year, might prove 

^Second, there should be in the Museum a collection of fossils from 
our Western States and Territories, to obtain a typical systematic 
and stratigraphical representation of them, for which from $3,000 to 
$5,000 a year, for ten years, will be necessary. 

Third, two of the four rooms for the exhibition of fossils now in 
the Museum are partly arranged. To complete the arrangement of 
these two, and to place the other two in the same position, will neces- 
sitate the expenditure of from $15,000 to $20,000. 

Fourth, it is quite important that there should be a marine zoologi- 
cal laboratory, in order that the students may work with a continuity 
of direction and purpose throughout the year. The curator of the 
Museum has, for sixteen years, at his own expense, maintained at 
Newport such a laboratory, for his own private use, to which a small 
number of students is admitted. Neither this nor the marine 
biological laboratory at Wood's Holl, however, is fully adequate to 


our needs. The cost of a suitable laboratory would be $15,000, and 
the annual expenses $2,000. 

Fifth, an assistant is needed in the palseontological department, 
with a salary of $1,500, to take the place of Professor Hyatt, who 
has been obliged to resign his valuable service there, for want of 

Sixth, there should be six assistants appointed : one in osteology, 
one in birds and mammals, two in palaeontology, two in invertebrates 
and alcoholic preparations. These six assistants are to be placed in 
charge of special rooms, when required for persons who wish to 
examine the collections. They would probably serve for salaries of 
$500 a year, each ; or an annual aggregate of $3,000. 

We should, also, call attention to the fact that there are no funds 
available for preparing an exhibit in the geological and geographical 
rooms. Professors Davis and Wolff have brought together a few 
models, as well as photographs and specimens, ultimately intended 
for those rooms. But, for want of funds, no systematic attempt has 
been made at bringing together collections which might be interesting 
to the public. 

From the point of view of the University, it seems a great misfor- 
tune that such magnificent facilities as have been got together in the 
past twenty years, at an enormous outlay of labor and time and 
money, should be allowed to remain, to so great a degree, unutilized 
for want of teachers and assistants. It is also to be regretted, that, 
for the instruction of undergraduates and beginners, an expert should 
be obliged to spend his time in teaching rudiments, for which 
a less highly-trained instructor would answer every purpose. It is 
not the judgment of the Committee that it would be well to devote 
the Museum and its corps of experts to purely scientific research, and 
to exclude students, as is done at the astronomical observatory, for 
instance. But it is, at least, doubtful how long we can keep the best 
talent if it continues to find itself so handicapped, as compared with 
men of similar position in other universities. 

The University should have, in the opinion of the Committee, five 
highly- accomplished men, not necessarily men who have achieved 
distinction, at salaries of $2,000 each, annually, for the higher 
instruction of advanced students in entomology, in both vertebrate 
and invertebrate zoology, in palaeontology, and in marine zoology, 
with the care and direction of a marine laboratory, if we are fortunate 
enough to secure one. 

For routine class-work in biology, it is reasonable to suppose that 
further provisions must be made, in the near future, in order to supply 
a greater demand for such courses of study, which we must expect 


from raising the standard of education in the Medical School, and 
through the natural growth of the University, as well as by reason of 
the exceptional facilities for study. This will involve the necessity of 
more teachers in the rudiments, some of whom we would do well to 
appoint now, in order to relieve, at least, the professor of anatomy, 
from being so driven by his classes as not to have the time for original 
investigations of his own, or for conducting researches through others 
and helping higher work. 

Of course, the same need exists in the department of geology, 
which, it is hoped, may soon be removed to larger quarters ; and the 
Committee reserves itself the privilege, on another occasion, of call- 
ing attention, in greater detail, to the needs of that department in 
connection with the Museum. 

Since 1874, the Museum has received no addition to its endowment, 
other than that from the curator, who has, also, freety given his own 
services without remuneration, except one recently of $5,000 for a 
scholarship. Possibly, we should except, also, $500 a year for one 
of the professors, from one of his friends, and from Mrs. Leconte a 
a collection of insects, with $500 for cases. In the meantime, as 
classes grow or otherwise, the demands upon the Museum increase, 
while its income really grows less. 

Members of your Committee have given much time to the matter 
of raising money for the requirements which they have outlined, but 
thus far with no tangible result. 

The Committee regrets to report the continued illness of Professor 
Hagen, and the loss of his valued services in the professorship of 

Presented January 11, 1893. 



To The Board of Overseers of Harvard College : — 

The Committee appointed to visit the Bussey Institution submit the 
following report : — 

The Bussey Institution offers to the young man an education in the 
sciences of agriculture, horticulture, and arboriculture. 

The officers and instructors are distinguished in their several de- 
partments. The Institution is pleasantly and conveniently situated, 
the building is commodious, and the fine old Bussey Farm, for so 
many years cultivated by the present venerable instructor in farming, 
if properly availed of, offers the best opportunities for teaching the 
art of practical farming. The Arnold Arboretum, which is being 
rapidly developed under the skilful hand of its accomplished Director, 
affords an unequalled opportunity for acquiring a knowledge of trees 
and shrubs, of their comparative usefulness and value, as well as of 
the best methods of planting and propagating them. Indeed, the 
facilities for obtaining the knowledge most useful to a farmer or 
horticulturalist are found at the Institution, but are availed of by so 
small a number of students that it must be very discouraging to the 
instructors, and detract from that espr it-de-corps which is so necessary 
to teachers and pupils for the effecting of the best results. 

The reasons for this are that the education is purely agricultural 
and horticultural, while at Amherst, and at other agricultural schools 
and colleges, a general education is offered, which must always prove 
more attractive to the class of young men who seek an education in 

While it is true that various courses of lectures are open to him at 
the college, yet these are generally of too advanced a character for 
the average agricultural student. Then again, the College is too far 
from the Bussey Institution for him to faithfully attend both of them. 

Another reason for the preference given to other agricultural 
schools, which is very apparent, is that there are no proper dormi- 
tories, no life in common, nothing of that daily intercourse which is 
ever so dear to the hearts of young men. The atmosphere is cold and 
forbidding. Instructors and students come for a brief hour or two, 
and return to their several homes. So lon<* as this is the condition 


of life at the Bussey Institution, it must continue to be what it is 
now. We cannot expect the number of students to increase. The 
Professor and Instructors may continue their valuable contributions 
to the science of agriculture and horticulture, but the Institution as a 
School of Agriculture cannot be expected to advance beyond its 
present position. 

For the Committee, 


Presented November 23, 1892. 



January 11, 1893. 
To The Board of Overseers of Harvard College : — 

We, the undersigned, members of the Committee appointed to 
visit the Jefferson Physical Laboratory and Department of Physics, 
having attended a duly notified meeting at the Laboratory Building 
on January 4th, 1893, have the honor to report as follows : — 

We find a marked improvement in the arrangement and administra- 
tion of the Laboratory since the date of our last report, and are 
pleased to note evidences of valuable original research by the 
Director and his associates. The apparatus connected therewith, 
and with the ordinary class work, bear witness to the mechanical 
ingenuity of the experimenters and the efficiency of the Laboratory 

We recognize the very great importance of the instruction in 
physical science now given by the Laboratory to the teachers of the 
Cambridge grammar schools ; and admire the ingenuity displayed in 
the contrivance of simple apparatus for this special work. 

We find the Laboratory library sadly in need of such standard 
books of reference as should be at the hand of every teacher and 
student of physics. The suggestion that such books are in the 
College Library does not meet our criticism ; and we respectfully 
urge a special appropriation which may ensure to the Laborator}' 
a fair working library. 

We are satisfied that "The Joseph Lovering Fund for Physical 
Research " is bearing good fruit, and that in no waj T can physical 
science at Harvard College be advanced more surety than by a 
substantial increase in this fund, the present income of which is 
barely four hundred dollars per annum. The Director, in his report 
to the President of the Universit}', indicates clearly the best conditions 
for research in the Physical Laboratory ; and these conditions could 
be established immediately if a sufficient income were at his disposal. 

Presented January 25, 1893. 



To The Board of Overseers of Harvard University : — 

The Committee on Government submits the following report for 
the calendar year 1892: — 

At sundry times several members of the Committee have visited 
the Dean's office in Cambridge, and have personally examined the 
workings of the disciplinary system now in use, and the records of 
attendance. In our opinion, the system is working fairly well. The 
students are kept up to their work, and it is possible at once to deter- 
mine, with reasonable accuracy, from what exercises any particular 
student has been absent. To carry out this system, however, requires 
not only good judgment and fine discretion, but also a large amount 
of purely clerical work. At times the force in the office has been 
insufficient. The Dean and the Recorder have been compelled to 
give time to matters of detail which should have been left to clerks, 
and, in consequence, these excellent officers have been considerably 
overworked. We are glad to be informed that at present the condi- 
tion of affairs is improved ; but we desire to reiterate the opinion 
expressed in our last report, that the present system is so valuable 
that its success should not be risked by overworking those called 
upon to administer it. In fact, the present system of doing the 
necessarjr clerical work at the offices in University Hall is a survival 
from the days when there were only a few hundred students in the 
College, and when the conditions of study and discipline were far 
simpler than the} 7 are to-day. The amount of purely clerical work 
now needed to record absences, to prepare for examinations and to 
tabulate their results, to send out notices and circulars, to answer the 
proper inquiries of parents and guardians, etc., is enormous. The 
machinery which does this work, hopelessly antiquated, patched in 
one place and added to in another, so as to meet the absolute neces- 
sities of the case, should be replaced. It is not for us to frame a 
new system ; we have not the necessary knowledge, but we desire to 
urge upon the proper authorities the need of arranging the clerical 
work in the offices of the seve:al Deans and Chairmen of Committees 
of the Faculty, the Recorder, Secretary, Regent, etc., in such a 
manner that it may be done promptly and without conflict, and that 
those officers may be free to devote themselves to the important 
duties which devolve upon them. 


We have had a conference with the Regent concerning the scope 
and execution of his duties. He has been able to exert considerable 
influence upon the officers and members of the College societies, and 
in some cases the advice which he has given privately has been found 
far more effective than stringent rules or public discussion. No doubt 
there must be disciplinary rules, but, in our opinion, they do much 
less good than wise and tactful advice given by an officer of the 
College commissioned for the purpose. The College has a right to 
expect that the efforts of the Regent in this direction shall be 
strongly supported by the influence of all teachers in the College. 

During the past year, the Regent has visited all students who have 
been ill, including many whose illness was slight and who had not 
seen a physician. In many cases he has induced these men to call 
one, and he informs us that the relations into which he has been 
brought with the students have been not only pleasant, but profitable 
in guiding them at other times. 

This sort of work has never before been done systematically and, 
in our opinion, is necessary ; but we find that the Regent, the Dean, 
and the Recorder are all of opinion that the appointment of an expert, 
as suggested by the Committee on Physical Training, might do much 
good both to the health and the morals of the students. 

For the Committee, 


Presented January 11, 1893. 



To the Board of Overseers of Harvard University : 

The undersigned Committee beg leave to submit the following 
observations : 

The Committee on German held a meeting with the Department of 
Instruction in German in March, 1893. The members of the Com- 
mittee and the members of the Department unanimously agreed that 
it was essential to proper progress in German and in many other 
studies in the University that the changes suggested by the Report 
submitted by the Committee in 1892 should be made at the earliest 
practicable moment. 

The Committee does not ignore the fact that those changes are 
radical, but nevertheless urges them as fundamental to a reasonable 
government of the University and as a necessaiy part of the reforms 
in education already begun there. 




Presented September 27, 1893. 




To the Board of Overseers of Harvard University : 

The present report will confine itself to a consideration of the 
condition and needs of the Botanic Garden, Botanical Laboratories, 
and Botanical Museum. 

The Herbarium is to receive attention in a subsequent report, since 
the Curator desires to postpone the presentation of the case until 

The Botanic Garden is at present in a very attractive condition. 
The Director, Professor Goodale, is fortunate in having hearty 
co-operation from the Head Gardener, Mr. Robert Cameron. The 
changes which have been made in the arrangement of plants are all 
designed to increase the facility with which teachers and pupils, both 
in our College and our Public Schools, can utilize the specimens. It 
is a pleasure to note that the Garden is visited by increasing numbers 
of interested visitors, and that the specimens are used by them in a 
most satisfactory manner. 

It was the original intention of Professor Gray to emplo}' the 
treasures of the Garden (as far as possible) not only for the Uni- 
versity but for the community ; and this plan his successor is carrying- 
out as fully as possible. The community appreciates this to a large 
extent, but there is still a serious drawback to complete success. An 
unruly element, coming chiefly from our foreign population, renders 
it necessary to have police protection for the Garden at certain times ; 
but it is hoped that this evil will ultimately be remedied. 

Extensive repairs upon the greenhouses have become imperatively 
necessary, but it is hoped that these have now been placed in a con- 
dition which will render it possible for the Garden to avoid further 
outlay for repairs until the time comes when strong, iron greenhouses 
can be erected. 

The Botanical Laboratories, equipped chiefly through the gifts of 
Mr. H. H. Hunnewell and Mr. F. L. Ames, have been filled with 
earnest students during the past year. The large elective has con- 
tained about two hundred men, while the students in all the other 
electives would bring the total up to nearly three hundred. It is not 
thought likely that any outlay will be required for the Laboratories 
for some years. 


The Botanical Museum comprises : 

First, the Ware Collection of Blaschka Glass Models, which is 
rapidly growing under the benefactions of Mrs. C. E. Ware and Miss 
Mary L. Ware. The beautiful displa} T of incomparable models is 
one of the chief attractions to visitors to our University. 

Second, The Economic Museum, which is steadily increasing in 
importance and value. The Director has already placed on exhibi- 
tion specimens in one or two of the important groups of economic 
products, but more cases are needed for the display. It is the belief 
of the Committee that the construction of these ought to be under- 
taken at once. The cases, together with a much-needed library of 
economic botan}*, would require the immediate expenditure of about 
eight thousand dollars. 

The Committee are gratified at being able to announce that several 
gifts have been made to the Museum during the present year, the 
most important of which was a sum of money by an anonymous bene- 
factor for the purpose of del raying the expenses of a check list of 
the North American plants described in Gray's Manual. This check 
list is believed to be an important addition to the appliances of the 

Miss Anna C. Lowell has continued the generous contribution of 
one thousand dollars to the permanent Lowell Fund for the Botanic 

Among the interesting gifts has been a Giant Tree Fern, from 
Australia, presented by Baron von Mueller, who has defrayed all 
expenses from Melbourne to Boston. This superb specimen is placed 
in the Australian house, and proves an important addition to our 
means of illustration. 

Hon. George W. Hammond, of Maine, has given three hundred 
dollars towards the purchase of a set of colored lantern slides illustra- 
tive of the vegetation of Japan. Gifts have also been received from 
Mr. F. H. Peabody and Mr. Walter Hunnewell for defraying the 
expense of princing descriptive labels and a catalogue of the Museum. 

The only immediate need of the establishment appears to be a sum 
of money sufficiently large to permit the Director to construct the 
additional cases and to proceed with the purchase of a library of 
Economic Botany. For this imperative need, for the present year it 
is believed, as we have said above, that the sum of eight thousand 
dollars would suffice. 

For the Committee, 


Presented September 27, 1893. 



To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College: — 
The number of pupils at the Lawrence Scientific School is to-day 

whl it " T 8Teater thaD What * WaS laSt ? ear ' three ««* 

and th ,, 7 yea [ S ag °' S6Ven timeS What * was five I*™ -go, 
and thn- een times what it was six years ago. Also the number of 

speed students ,s gradually becoming less in proportion to the number 

n a ffivlt ntS ' WMle " 1888 - 89 the S P ecial «***« were five t.mes as many as the regular students, to-day the regular 

students are m the majority. Where in 1887-88 there were 14 srfee M 

am. 6 regular students, the School this year has 131 special and HO 

wr!ttn r tt r a tofcal of m students - ^ since ais r ^« *■ 

written the number is increased to 279 ) 

This sudden revival of the School from a dormant condition to one 
of greater actmty , ^ ^ ^ fa ^ Qf 

I theTTflT, "; Unh ' erSity - U haS SUdde "^ be — a fact 

^r ion of the'lT ° ^^ ^ ^'^ te " ^^ of «>« 

portion of the Umye m ty which receives instruction at Cambridge 

wrth every prospect that next year it may claim a much larger prj I 
tion of the University population. - P ' 

The primary cause for this rapid increase in the number of students 
at the School ,s of course to be found in the energy and devotion o 

teachds. These have acted upon a demand, which evidently exists 

Ken! sss? rr y ' for technicai "*«* * -S 

a!es tt S^n g r J aSSened !tSe,f aS ° fferi »g certai » '^van- 
tages, the School now draws students in these largely increase num 

bers. They are attracted partly by the excellence of the oppo tu," ies 
n the School itself, partly by those it shares with the Co Z p y 

FcllSeXfyS. ^ "' ~* * - -AS 2 
It seems fair to judge of the future by the recent past, and there 

Pom,r? < h n \ qUeSti ° n ^ tbat the S ««ool will grow very apd y 
Popularity has been attained. Your Committee now feel 22 
eerued that what is oifered to its stndents should be be e id more 
thorough than they can elsewhere obtain. 


At present the crying need that confronts the School is room in 
which to instruct these large numbers. The increased fees meet for 
the moment the calls for extra teachers and apparatus, but the quar- 
ters that have answered for a slumbering school are absolutely inade- 
quate for the large and increasing classes. Professor Shaler tells us 
that the School has before it the alternative of raising the standard to 
such a degree as to stop the increase of numbers or of obtaining in 
some way a suitable building. Present needs for a few 3-ears might 
be met by a comparatively small three story building to accommodate 
the Department of Mechanical Engineering, but this should be one 
wing of a future complete structure that could in time have one addi- 
tional section for Civil Engineering, another for Electrical Engineering, 
with a smaller section for Mining Engineering. On the completion of 
this new building the present School building would serve for the 
Mathematical, Astronomical, English, and other courses. 

It is our duty to report to the Overseers the condition and needs of 
the School. We accordingly urgently point out that while the condi- 
tions are in the highest degree favorable, the needs are of the most 
absolute and peremptory kind. The School, in short, is afflicted with 

Committee to visit the Lawrence Scientific School. 

Presented November 15, 1893. 



In the death of its revered Chairman, Rev. A. P. Peabody, D. D., 
the Committee has lost a member whose interest in the work was ever 
active and whose wise counsels are sorely missed. 

During the year two meetings were held, the Professors in the 
department also being present by invitation. 

Assistance in the teaching was given by Mr. Reisner and Mr. Chester, 
who were also carrying on their own advanced studies in Semitic. 
Mr. Chester continues as assistant for the year 1893-94, while 
Mr. Reisner spends the year in study abroad, having been appointed 
to a traveling fellowship. 

All the courses offered by the department were taken last 3'ear 
except the Aramaic and the General Semitic Grammar. There were 
two courses of research given for the first time, one in Assyrian and 
one in Arabic. 

There was a marked increase in the number of students choosing 
Semitic subjects, particularly of the historical courses. The latter do 
not require a knowledge of Semitic languages. Some of these are of 
such large general interest, specially those relating to the Old Testa- 
ment, that the}' are worthy of the attention of every student in the 
College. A growing recognition of their value and the improved 
facilities of the department explain largely the increased numbers in 
the classes. The numbers electing Semitic topics were as follows : — 
I. Language Courses: Hebrew, 18; Assyrian, 7; Arabic, 5; 
Phoenician, 4. 

II. Historical Courses: Hebrew history, 100; Hebrew litera- 
ture, 17; Hebrew religion, 5; Assyrian history, 22; Bagdad Cali- 
fate, 29. 

Total, 20G. 

The fortnightly meetings of the Semitic Conference were well 
attended. At these meetings papers were read and discussed by the 
instructors, the students, and invited guests. 

In May a course of four public illustrated lectures was given b} T 
Professor Lyon on Babylonian-Assyrian history. 

Two of the students presented acceptable theses of the Ph.D. 
degree, Mr. Reisner and Mr. Hazard. The former passed also a 


rigid oral examination, and received the degree; but Mr. Hazard 
was prevented bj^ serious illness from doing the same. 

Valuable additions were made during the year to the equipment of 
the department. Among these may be mentioned a series of oriental 
wall maps and a stereoptieon with several hundred oriental views. 
The Semitic Library, which was much used by the students, received 
many valuable new volumes. The Semitic Museum likewise grew by 
the arrival of several cases of casts from abroad, and by the purchase 
of a fine lot of Phoenician glass and two lots' of modern Bedouin and 
Palestinian objects. 

The Committee has felt more strongly than ever the need of secur- 
ing suitable quarters for the department. Last year the instruction 
was given in the different buildings, while the Museum occupies a 
room in a fourth. The problem of bringing the apparatus and the 
instruction together into a Semitic building has been under serious 
consideration. It appears that a structure adequate for present needs 
could be erected for fifty thousand dollars, and conditional pledges 
to this cause have been made to the extent of twenty-six thousand 
dollars. It is believed that this building would be most effective for 
its immediate object and from the general educational point of view 
if it might be grouped with others of a similar nature devoted to the 
other departments represented in the instruction of the University. 

The vacancy now existing in the Committee should be filled at an 
early day, so that an efficient interest in the work of the department 
shall be kept alive. 

All of which is respectfully submitted. 

JACOB H. SCHIFF, Chairman. 

Presented November 15, 1893. 



To the Board of Overseers : — 
I have the honor to report as follows : 

On different occasions I visited the zoological laboratories and 
lecture, rooms at Harvard, as also the galleries of the Museum adja- 
cent. In the laboratories there were a number of students at work 
the more advanced entirely alone, the others more or less closely 
supervised by the head of the department and his assistants, who 
evidently realize the necessity for training students to do their own 
thinking and their own work, while yet exercising enough supervision 
over them to keep them pointed in the right direction. In the lower 
classes composed chiefly of undergraduates, the supervision of course 
has to be much closer, and there has to be very much more of actual 
pedagogic instruction. The theses and papers produced by the 
higher students often possess real value, and not infrequently take 
rank among the writings that have to be consulted bv specialists in 
different lines of work. 

There should, however, be a very much fuller and later set of 
apparatus used. The University ought to pay the head of each of its 
departments well, and allow him an ample staff of capable, well- 
trained young assistants to take the routine work off his hands ■ and 
the University should not allow itself to fall behind its competitors in 
the kind and quantity of appliances used in the work of the students. 
Har vard should ;„ every ^^ kegp ^^ rf ^ ^^ ^ 

fellow umversities, whether here or in Europe, and should profit by 
every improvement made. J 

In the Zoological Department special attention is devoted to micro- 
scopic work, particularly in connection with anatomical studies and 
studies into the earliest and lowest forms of life, and every effort is 
made to profit by the experience and teachings of the Germans in this 
kind of scientific investigation. This is good as far as it goes ; but 
it must be remembered that it is only a small part of zoology. It will 
no do to neglect the work of the systematist and the outdoor faunal 
naturalist for purely closet work. 

In addition to the present course in zoology, I believe that system- 
atic work should be done in a number of widely-separated groups, 


comprising the higher vertebrates as well as invertebrates. Field 
work also is necessary, and if impracticable during the college year, 
it may be carried on in vacation. Careful attention should be paid 
to the study of the habits and life histories of animals. In the case 
of advanced students, original systematic work should be encouraged 
— such as revisions of genera. Another important element to which 
sufficient heed is not paid is the study of the distribution of life, 
which should be taught in lectures, covering both distribution in time 
(paleontologic distribution) and distribution in space- (geographic 
distribution) . Such questions ought by rights to be considered more 
or less in connection with one another. 

The anatomical microscopist has a high and honorable function to 
fill in the scientific word ; but it is certainly no more, and is probably 
decidedly less, important than that of the systematist and the outdoor 
collector and observer of the stamp of Audubon or Bachman, Baird 
or Agassiz. The microscopist is merely one of many scientific 
workers, and proper biological work must include very much more 
than the study of microscopic anatomy and embryology. It is abso- 
lutely necessary for the student to be grounded in the use of the 
microscope ; but both instructor and student should keep steadily in 
mind the fact that in biology, properly so called, the position of the 
microscope by no means answers in importance to the position of the 
telescope in astronomy. Yet this is a mistake into which many of 
our modern biological investigators are prone to fall. 

The highest type of zoologist is the naturalist, the man who loves 
outdoor work as well as the work of the laboratory, and who studies 
and delights in animals and plants, considered with reference to 
nature as a whole, and with regard to their own habits and inter- 
relationship of structure. In all our colleges, and in Harvard among 
the number, the modern tendency is to pay attention almost solely to 
work with the microscope in morphology and embryology, chiefly 
with regard to the lower organisms. This is a great mistake ; such 
work should be treated merely as a portion, perhaps the preliminary 
portion, of the course ; for this division of the science of biology is 
merely a division after all, and not the whole science. Until thirty 
or forty years ago its importance as a branch of zoological study was 
not recognized ; now we go to the opposite and equally pernicious 
extreme of regarding it as the only important branch of the study. 
In Harvard the student should have practical training in systematic 
zoology, being taught to work out for himself, of course at first under 
competent supervision, the innumerable , problems surrounding the 
question of genetic and specific affinities and differences, as affected 
by food, environment, and ancestral descent; together with the 


evolution, individual variation, and distribution of species, genera and 

It is a pity to adhere too blindly to German methods ; we should 
take what is best in them, as in those of any other country, and 
profit by them, but we should certainty not take all, good and bad 
indiscriminately ; and even the good that we do choose we should 
assimilate to our own ways and habits of thought. 

Thoroughness, appreciation of minute investigation, and attention 
to detail are indispensible ; and we must beware of the tendency 
towards hasty and superficial work, which has been the bane of 
certain sides of American development. On the other hand, we must 
strive to avoid the besetting sin of many industrious and otherwise 
useful investigators, that is, the inability to see the matter as a whole 
because of his very capacity to see the molecules of which it is com- 
posed, and the tendency to lose all capacity to do general work or 
draw general conclusions, and to regard the heaping up of innum- 
erable small observations on innumerable small points as. the one 
final end of scientific study. It is quite as important for the scientific 
man as for the historian to possess the power of discrimination and 
rejection. While he should beware, above all things, of generaliz- 
ing from insufficient data and of starting to build his superstructure 
before having laid a solid foundation, he should also take heed not to 
spend his whole time in lading the foundation, and not to fall into the 
error of thinking that laborious and minute care in shaping a single 
brick is the equivalent of building a wall. Though the collection of 
innumerable facts is absolutely necessary as a preliminary to doing 
any great work, yet this great work can never be done b} T the mere 
collection of such facts ; they only form the data upon which to base 
it. In creating specialists we should not lose sight of the fact that 
we must also create the conditions which may enable the greater 
general writers to profit by the work of these specialists ; and while 
recognizing fully the need of the laboratory worker, we must not 
forget the need also of the man who can collect, observe, and record 
his observations, in the open ; who can work both in the laboratory 
and afield ; who is a naturalist, in the fine old acceptation of the 
w r ord, and not a latter-day "biologist" — a mere histologist and 

Special attention should be paid to the Museum of Comparative 
Zoology in connection with the zoological courses of the University. 
I went over this museum with some care, and consulted Mr. William 
Brewster, the ornithologist, in reference to the question how it can be 
used and developed so as to aid in the most effective manner not onry 
the students of natural history themselves but also the general public, 


upon whose intelligent interest in scientific questions so much of the 
po sibility of successful scientific research depends. The value of 
the collections in the museum to the students of the zoological courses 
hardly needs to be more than pointed out; indeed it more 
fair to call the collections invaluable to them. Of course for these 
students alone there is less need of paying special heed to the arrange- 
ment of the specimens than when the needs of the general public are 
concerned. In most cases the student can work best from a zoologi- 
cal specimen which is not set up in the way that it would be apt to 
strike the eye of an outsider. Ordinarily the scientific investigator 
who wishes to make a special study of some given animal will try to 
get as full a series of specimens as possible, from different localities, 
and collected in different seasons, and will prefer, if the animal is a 
snake or a frog, for instance, to have these specimens in alcohol ; 
while if it is a warbler or a shrew-mouse he will wish to have before 
him hundreds of skins and skulls or skeletons prepared in the ordinary 
style, with a few alcoholic specimens likewise. But even the student, 
and especially the 3'oung student, can be greatly benefited and can be 
taught to generalize with accuracy and discrimination and to look 
out for certain kinds of facts by having before him as object lessons 
specially prepared series of animals of various kinds, arranged with 
reference not only to their systematic position, but also to their 
geographic range, associates, and environment. These special series, 
moreover, offer in some wa} T s the only method of appealing to the 
outsider who is not a zoological specialist, but who is an intelligent 
observer and delighted to take an interest in scientific questions, if 
the} T are presented to him in a clear and attractive form. Under our 
democratic system of life it is difficult to overestimate the desirability, 
for the purpose of securing scientific work of a high character, of 
having a well-informed general public intelligently interested in 
scientific questions and with that general knowledge which would 
enable them to appreciate the highly specialized work of the men who 
stand foremost in the ranks of our scientists. 

These special series, arranged on such a plan, would serve to 
interest and educate both the public and the general student. They 
might be arranged on some such plan as the following, taking at first 
only mammals and birds, as being the most interesting and important. 
Every care should be taken to give the groups of mounted specimens 
artistic value, rendering the beasts and birds as lifelike as possible, 
without losing anything of scientific value ; this is a most important 
point. The different series should be arranged : — 

1. To show the s} T stematic position of certain groups and their 
relationships to one another. Both genera and f amity could be used 


for this purpose; the genera of short-tailed am] long-tailed shrews 
and the whole family of the insectivora or some gro„p°of rodent 2 
as and their allies, for instance, or the thrashes, wrens, 
hnches, and warblers. ' 

2. To show the effect of surrounding conditions on the genera and of mammals and non-migratory birds which range uninter- 
ruptedly oyer large geographical areas. Faunal maps should be used 
.n connection with the specimens. Such genera as the chipmunks 
andspern.oph.les, and among birds the horned larks and snowbirds • 
and such as the ordinary wood rabbit and white-footed mouse' 
these tol s tU '' key ' WMsky - jack and s P™ ce §™»se could be used in 
3. To show by the grouping of the mammals and birds exhibited, 
he ™,ous phases of appearance in any given species, correlating 
with sex, season, age, etc. Such species as the indigo bird, orchard 
ono e bobolink, and the varying hares and ermines 8 could be used 
. lor tnis purpose. 

4 To show the relations of mammals and birds to their breeding 
feeding, and general life economics. These groups would have to be 
prepared with special skill. They should show the denizens of the 
desert, the forest, and the swamps, of mountain and lowland'; they 
should show the different kinds of homes and nests, as the house of 
the muskrat the burrow of the woodchuck, and the widely varying 
ness of wood-peckers, mourning doves, song sparrows, barn-, wallows* 
Baltimore orioles, magpies, and the like, with the eggs and young 
|hn different species should be shown foraging for food -minks 
Jeld-m.ce, hawks, dueks, vireos, yellow-birds, summer yellow-birds 

Ls'orT 6 ' ^ b / ttleS ° f male m °° Se ' ° r the ^ <J»oing 
nng of cock pra.r.e fowl in the breeding season could be exhibited 

Fmally, groups might be made for such species as packrats 
and cow-buntings, with extraordinary or aberrant habits 

o. To show the dichromatic phases which occur in many families of 
mammals and birds ; as among certain owls, egrets and squirrels. 
L T ° f° W \ hat ™y be PWPerly regarded as the primary life 

tlloft e e h e T SUrfaCe ' ^ bringiDg t0gethel ' ^P-l repres'enta- 
tives of the higher groups peculiar to each. 

7. To show, by association of genera, the essential elements of 
he great c.rcumpolar boreal region, with speeial reference to the 

resemblances and differences between the American and Eurasian 

8. To show more in detail, in connection with faunal maps asso of the genera and species characteristic of each of the 'faunal 
divisions of North America. 


Visitors to the World's Fair can gain some idea of at least certain 
of the kinds of groups to which I refer by examining the various sets 
of mounted mammals and birds in the Government exhibit, and also 
those prepared by Mr. L. L. Dyche, in the Kansas State exhibit. 



The Chairman of the Committee on Instruction in Zoology having 
sent in his individual report, the other members of the Committee 
be£ leave to submit the following : — 

After visiting the laboratories and conferring with the instructors, 
we are of the opinion that the present scheme of courses in Zoology 
is both well conceived and well carried out. The plan restricts the 
student's freedom of election to certain combinations of courses. 
This restriction is imposed on account of the inter-relations of these 
courses with one another and with certain of the courses offered by 
the Botanical department. A wholesome restraint is thus put upon 
the student who is disposed to abuse the freedom afforded under the 

elective system. 

The more elementary studies deal with the general morphology of 
animals These courses are succeeded by those adapted to more 
advanced students - courses largely devoted to embryology and 
histology. From their disciplinary value, the adaptability of their 
method's to sedentary laboratory work, the important place they hold 
in the present phase of Science, and the wide field they offer for 
original investigations, it appears to us that these subjects are rightly 
given a place of paramount importance in the advanced instruction 
offered by the University. The success of the methods employed is 
attested by the large number of memoirs of original value produced 
by the students and published in the Bulletin of the Museum of 
Comparative Zoology. . 7 ^Wv 

Still, it seems to us that the programme of courses in Zoology 
mio-ht well be rounded out by adding an elementary course in system- 
atic zoology (classification) and the distribution of animal life upon 
the Earth's surface. The large collections of the Museum in the 
exhibition-rooms adjacent to the laboratories are specially adapted to 
subserve such a course, which would be a valuable collateral to t 
morphological courses now offered and would have the further advan- 
tage, for students wishing to pursue work in systematic rather thai 


morphological Zoology, of serving as a preliminary to individual 
researches carried out under the supervision of the curators in charge 
of the special collections of the Museum. 

The equipment of the laboratories appears to be fairly good though 
not equal to that of two or three recently established American 
Universities. The most pressing need in the way of equipment is a 
good aquarium to supply the requisite material for study. 

Respectfully submitted, 


Presented November 15, 1893. 


The Committee on Government herewith submits its report for 
the calendar year 1893: — 

As in earlier years, the Chairman and other members of the Com- 
mittee have visited the offices in University Hall from time to time, 
and have examined the books in which are recorded the choice of 
students' electives, the attendance at lectures and recitations, the 
marks at examinations, etc. The Committee had one long confer- 
ence in Boston with most of the officers connected with the discipline 
of the College, and individual members of the Committee have often 
talked with the Dean and Regent about matters committed to their 
charge. In our opinion, the discipline of the College is not only 
good, but constantly improving. The students are properly looked 
after without being spied upon too curiously, and we believe that 
their feeling for the College and their instructors is at least as friendly 
as in the days when discipline was unduly lax. We have been 
informed that the time of the members of the University foot-ball 
team during the months of October and November is so fully occu- 
pied with foot-ball that few, if any, of them have considerable time 
left for study. Apparently this difficulty is not seriously felt by the 
members of the other teams. Limited though it is to twenty or thirty 
men during about a quarter of the academic year, it deserves attention 
from the Athletic Committees and others entrusted by the University 
with the management of athletics. 

In other reports we have noticed the insufficient clerical force in 
the Dean's office, and the antiquated methods in use there. In the 
past year there has been an improvement. The records have been 
better kept, and the entries in the books have been made more 
promptly. Nevertheless, in some matters, there has been consider- 
able delay. The present want of system is exceedingly wasteful of 
the time and energy of men like the Dean, who can be employed more 
profitably than in running errands, and we believe that it is wasteful 
of money as well. 

Thirty or forty years ago, as we are informed, the clerical work 
connected with the government of the College was done by the Presi- 
dent and Regent. On extraordinary occasions some one from the 


Library was called in to help them. Such simplicity of administra- 
tion is possible no longer. To begin with, there are at present ^the 
Dean of the College, with an office on the second floor of University 
Hall, the Secretary, who has a desk in the room used for the meetings 
of the Faculty, and Professor Morgan, with another desk m the same 
room. In an office on the same floor, next that of the Dean, and 
open to students and to the public, sit the Recorder and a clerk, 
incessantly interrupted and quite incapable of any systematic clerical 
work In a recess not far off, and almost as much exposed to inter- 
ruption, sits the Assistant Recorder, who has very important clerical 
duties. We understand that the health of this officer was once 
endangered through his working in close proximity to the only wash- 
bowl in University Hall. As the plumbing is now in good order, 
however, his position is no longer hazardous, but only extremely 
uncomfortable. When the Recorder wishes quiet he sometimes takes 
refuge in the adjoining Dean's office. When the public office is over- 
crowded, and even at other times, the Dean's office » no secure 
against interruption, and if he wishes to talk with a student in pn- 
vate he is compelled to retire into the President's office. 

In the third story of University Hall is the office of the Dean of the 
Faculty, and the Dean of the Graduate School, who haye between 
them one clerk for the half of each day. The rest of the day this 
clerk is the Assistant Secretary. 

In another room on the same floor are two stenographers and a 
clerk- the latter making entries in books which are constantly used 
by the Dean, the Recorder, and others on the floor below and which, 
therefore, occupy much of the time of the office boy, besides wasting 
much of the time of all the administrative officers. Often the Dean 
is compelled to leave men with whom he is talking on matters of he 
utmost importance to themselves, and of real importance to the 
College, and to hunt for the necessary record through half a dozen 
rooms on one floor of University Hall, and two or three rooms on the 
floor above, interrupting in this pursuit several busy- officer s and 
clerks. Such methods in any office in Boston would be considered 

Pr The St cMeT'clerk in University Hall, if there is any, is the officer 
called the Recorder. This gentleman is expected to direct the clerks 
scattered about University Hall, taking his orders from ^ *— , 
the Deans, the Regent, the Secretary, etc. During many hours of 
every day he must be ready to talk to the students and their parent , 
and he must listen to and examine all excuses for absence from Col- 
we exercises and for tardiness in written work. He it is who assigns 
Stne rooms to the several professors and classes -a tremendous 


task at the beginning f every College year. When the Recorder is 
engaged with the students, or is otherwise busy, officers and profes- 
sors having clerical work to be done must get the attention of some 
clerk, always interrupting him, and often taking him from other work 
even more important. 

When the amount of work becomes absolutely overwhelming, stu- 
dents are hired, to whose training the Recorder must devote himself ; 
as the last resort, a real clerk is engaged, not to do any definite work, 
but to pick up the odd jobs which the clerk last hired has been forced 
to drop. No one unfamiliar with the routine work of the Dean's 
office has any idea of its extent, particularly at the beginning of the 
year. The elective courses taken by each student must be noted in 
the absence book ; the elective list of each student must be checked 
to secure a legitimate choice of courses and hours ; the freshmen 
admission records must be transferred from the sheets to the Year 
Book ; the enrollment cards of each course must be alphabetically 
arranged and sent to the printer ; the names of all students must be 
entered alphabetically in the absence books ; the registration cards 
and enrollment cards should be compared ; the results of the hundreds 
of petitions filed on the opening days of the term must be recorded in 
the proper books. All these things should be done in a few days. 
Some of them are scarcely accomplished by Christmas, some are 
hardly done at all. Without them the discipline of the College, upon 
which the College spends so much time, money, and energy, is defec- 
tive. One clerk is continually answering questions ; one records the 
changes of elective courses ; one remains for everything else. The 
regular jobs coming in from day to day, the irregular jobs set by 
committees or single officers needing statistics, the annual jobs — 
such as entering examination marks, and preparing tables for the 
reports of the Dean and others —get done when, where, and by whom 
they can. 

We do not think the Overseers will be surprised to learn that in the 
past two or three years the health of nearly every officer connected 
with the government of the College has given way once or oftener. 

What is needed in University Hall is not one additional clerk, or 
five, but a system. In a college, even in a large college, where the 
course of study is fixed, rigid discipline can be maintained with a 
simple system. A college in which all studies are elective, if it 
allows the students to do as they please, may dispense with a system 
almost altogether. Harvard is trying to maintain both the discipline 
of its students and elective studies. To do this is no easy matter, for 
it requires not only sound and delicate judgment, but a large amount * 
of highly-systematized clerical work. To illustrate the almost incredi- 


ble stupidity of the present arrangements : the dumb waiter connect- 
ing the floors of University Hall is much too small to carry the record 
books, which must be constantly moved from one floor to another. 
Intelligent redistribution of offices, some changes in partitions, the 
occupation of two or three rooms now used for instruction, and a 
dumb waiter to carry books quickly from one floor to another, would 
afford great relief. 

More important than these physical changes is the appointment of 
a chief clerk, who shall be chief clerk and nothing more, without try- 
to add to his duties those of an adviser of students or of an errrand 
boy. Under his sole direction should be gathered the whole clerical 
force in a suitable room conveniently situated but quiet, absolutely 
inaccessible to the public, and nearly so to the other officers of the 


We do not believe that such an arrangement will involve the College 
in any considerable additional expense. A clerk working in favor- 
able conditions without interruption, responsible only to one supe- 
rior, can accomplish much more than under the very unfavorable 
conditions now existing in University Hall. Even if additional 
expense be required to carry it out, however, a change is absolutely 


In concluding we ought to say that the Dean and other adminis- 
trative officers not only have made no complaint of the conditions 
which make their work unduly burdensome, difficult, and unhealthy, 
but have tried to apologize for their own hardships. 
We recommend the passage of the following vote : — 
•' Voted that, in the opinion of the Board of Overseers, better pro- 
vision should be made in University Hall, or elsewhere, for the 
accommodation of the officers having charge of the administration of 
the College ; and that the clerical force connected with the administra- 
tion should be reorganized, and its work thoroughly systematized." 

For the Committee, 



The work of the department of Geology is under the charge of four 
members of the Faculty. Professor J. D. Whitney gives lectures in 
Economical Geology and in Mineral Veins and Metalliferous Pro- 
ducts, in alternate years. This year he gives also a half-course in 
Geographical Methods ami Results. Professor Davis has charge of 
the elementary aud advanced work in Meteorology and Physical 
Geography, and takes part also in the direction of the advanced 
Geological field work. Professor Wolff has charge of the instruction in 
1 etrography, both the elementary and advanced work. He also has 
a share ,n the direction of the field work which is noted in the 
Catalogue as Geology 22. The other courses in the department are 
conducted by Professor Staler, and the instructors and assistants "who 
collaborate with him. These courses include numbers 4, 5, 8 d 14 
15 and 24. Professor Shaler also shares with Professors Davis' and 
Wolff and Dr. Harris in the supervision of the advanced field work. 

Ihe project of these courses which are under the direction of Pro- 
fessor Shaler is directed to the end of giving the student first, a general 
knowledge of the subject, which is provided in courses number 4 5 8 
and 9, and second, a provision for special training in a knowledge and 
nee of fossils such as is required in the theory and practice of the 

The elementary course consists of lectures to a large class of about 
two hundred and fifty men. These lectures are intended to afford 
such a knowledge of the subject as may reasonably be desired by 
those who intend to make the science only a small part of an academic 
education. Beside the lectures, students in this course are required 
to attend special exercises conducted by Mr. Griswold and Mr. Dodge 
1 hese are partly recitation and partly occasions for the elaboration of 
diffieut points. From time to time in the progress of the course 
special hours are devoted to the illustration of the subject matter by 
means of the lantern. The materials for this use are abundantly 
provided for by the Gardner collection of photographs and slides. A 
parallel curse known as Geology 5 affords a laboratory training 
covering essentially the field of the general lectures before named " 
Students who complete the above-mentioned courses may then 
enter either the courses in General Critical Geology, or in Structural 
and Dynamical Geology, which continue the same subject matter, but 
» a critical and somewhat investigative rather than in a didactic way 


After the above-mentioned work, which generally requires two years, 
and after the summer school work known as Geolog}' 82, the students 
who wish to obtain a knowledge of the subject such as is fit for those 
who wish to plan careers in the science are admitted to course number 
22, i. e., the advanced field work. 

The summer courses under the charge of the department are three 
in number, and consist of elementary, secondary and advanced field 
work, though in the elementary course there are some laboratoiy 
exercises. Experience has shown that this grader! work in the field 
is extremely advantageous to students, as well to those who pursue 
the subject merely for an academic end as for those who intend to 
follow it in a professional way. 

In the portion of the department under the charge of Professor Shaler 
the instruction seems to be in satisfactory condition. The work, how- 
ever, is seriously hampered by lack of space in the lecture room and 
laboratories. The instruction in five courses is necessarily given in 
one room, wherein the men and the materials for teaching are most 
inconveniently crowded. 

It seems most desirable that the courses above-mentioned should 
be supplemented by others which may prove a much more extended 
instruction in Mining Geology, and the related work in Metallurgy, 
than is now afforded. A considerable number of students now in the 
University expect to be engaged in mining or in the smelting of ores, 
and are pursuing their studies in Geology with reference to such ends. 
With the addition of this comparatively small amount of instruction, 
the department will be able to afford, when the work is supplemented 
by summer experience in mines, a very fair preparation for a career 
in the economic branch of the subject. 

The needs of room which must seriously hinder the development of 
the department can only be adequately provided for by the construc- 
tion of the southern section in the main front of the Museum, which 
is intended to serve the demands of the department. 

Under the direction of Professor Wolff, two courses were given 
last year, as usual, one a lecture and laboratory course for beginners, 
and the other an advanced course in original work. The first course 
had eighteen students and the second course six students. This is 
the largest number of students that have as yet taken up this branch 
of geological work, Petrography. Eight of these students were grad- 
uated in the scientific school and nine were undergraduates. Most of 
these men study this special subject for use in geological surveying, 
teaching or mining. Two scientific papers were published by students, 
and the amount of original work completed and laid aside for the 
present. The equipment is much improved by the addition of an 
electric motor for running the machinery used in preparing these 


sections of rocks and fossils, and a small dynamo for use with an arc 
light for projection to microscopic slides and ordinary photographic 
slides. The collections of rocks and slides was somewhat augmented. 

The needs of this sub-department are especially now with the 
equipment of a chemical laboratory in the basement, so that analyses 
of rocks can be made here and the arrangement of the exhibition room 
for Petrography be made to form a part of the exhibition for general 
geology. The rooms are ready and so is some of the material, 
especially part of the Chicago exhibit. 

As far as regards general instruction in Physical Geography, 
including Meteorology, this department is in a very satisfactory con- 
dition. The rooms at its disposal are not used for any other purpose, 
giving exceptionally good opportunity for the collection and display 
of illustrative material, the fund collected from laboratory fees and 
received by appropriation from the corporation enabling the buying 
of a large variety of maps, views, models, etc. Two assistants are 
allowed Professor Davis : Mr. Ward in Meteorology, Mr. Griswold in 
Physical Geography. They make it possible for him to follow the 
work of the students in the elementary half-courses from week to 
week, and thus to assign grades at the end of each course with con- 
siderable accuracy, instead of determining that by occasional pre- 
announced examinations for which the students too often injudicious^ 
cram under experienced tutors and thus defeat the real intention of 
the instruction. As regards higher instruction in these subjects, an 
advance could be made by instituting a course on the Physical Geog- 
raply of the United States and of Europe, the two to be given in 
alternate 3'ears. There is at present no such course in college, indeed, 
no course in which the geography of the more important parts of the 
world is properly described. Such courses always make part of the 
higher university curricula in German}', where much importance is 
given to it. This will be of great value to students of history and 
economics. The collections of maps, books of travel, geographies, 
etc., is ample for the needs of such a course. 

In the opinion of the visiting committee, a course on the Ph} r sical 
Geography of the United States should be at once established if pos- 
sible, and the course on the Physical Geography of Europe should be 
established the following year. 

This is the most important recommendation the visiting committee 
have to make in their report on the condition and needs for the whole 
Geological Department. For some years past there has been an 
opportunity given to the students for research in Physical Geography 
and in certain branches of Meteorology. This is gradually being 
recognized as a serious and desirable course for students who expect 
to become teachers or investigators in geology or geography. It is 


now taken by a small number of advanced men, and will probably 
grow slowly. The large collections of the department give it strength. 
A number of the theses presented have been published as creditable 

The geographical exhibition room in the Museum allotted to this 
subject by Mr. Agassiz is at present practical!}' empty. About 
$5,000 will be needed to fit it up with proper cases, tables, drawers, 
etc., for the exhibition and storage of materials. Such a room would 
be of great educational value, practically unique in this countn T , and 
could be so arranged that others might pattern after it. The visiting- 
committee, however, cannot hope to do more than call attention to 
this at present, for in the present financial condition of the community 
they feel that begging for subscriptions would be a hopeless task. 
There is also - great need in the department for a development in the way 
of applied or practical geograpln*. For this purpose a young man 
having proper training in geography and geology, with good experi- 
ence in field work, and combining with this a sufficiently artistic skill 
to enable him to draw and model, might be selected. He could give 
useful courses in this kind of work and thus educate men to become 
map makers in a proper sense. Such men are greatly needed by pub- 
lishing houses for whom map drawing is now done by draftsmen who 
manifestly know very little of geography. 

An instructor of this kind would go far towards preparing geograph- 
ical materials for publication, and would thus contribute towards the 
elevation of general school teaching. 

In conclusion, the visiting committee wish to state that as a whole, 
as things generally go, the Geological Department is in excellent 
condition. The points enumerated in the report, it will be noticed, 
are points in which advancement rather than changes are desired. 
But if the Universit}' is to move onward towards an ideal condition 
and maintain the leading position it now possesses in geography, the 
two courses mentioned above, Physical Geography for the United 
States and Europe must be added. The applied side of the study 
must be developed by the employment of an instructor for this sub- 
ject alone, and the exhibition room must be filled with the best 
geographical material in the world, which teachers, students and pub- 
lishers may consult ; the} T will be quick to realize and appreciate the 
fact that it is to Harvard they must turn and go in order to use 
and get this information ; and the University will be benefitted 






To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : 

Gentlemen, — In pursuance of our duties as defined in section 28 
of the rules and by-laws of your honorable body, we have had a con- 
ference with the members of the English Department, and by this and 
other means have endeavored to ascertain what relation the study of 
English literature bears to other studies in the Universit}^ curriculum, 
how it is pursued and what practical means, if any, can be taken to 
make it more effective as an educational force. 

We find a very general agreement that those who present them- 
selves for examination at entrance are less conversant, than was once 
the case, with great literature ; that the habit of reading seems not to 
have been formed, and that it is impossible to count on any familiarity 
with literature which may serve as a basis for specific academic study. 
There is little evidence that the secondary schools at present regard 
an equipment in English as an important element in their work. 

The University cannot, perhaps, formalty correct this evil ; it is 
doubtful if by any requirements for admission it could ver}' greatly 
stimulate the zeal of boj^s who are looking forward to college life. It 
might even be contended that the present system of specifying certain 
books tends still further to limit the familiarity with great literature, 
since by concentrating attention on these, it reenforces the habit of 
mind which asks for the minimum of work in preparation for admis- 
sion to college. But we are convinced that the University should 
lose no opportunity which may offer for throwing its influence into 
that movement in common school education which looks to the enrich- 
ment of reading courses ; which demands that the pupil should at the 
very earliest stage be brought into immediate contact with great 
English literature, and should be held steadily to this view in all the 
years from the primaiy school through grammar and high school, so 
that a generous acquaintance may be had with the classics of English 
literature, both of English and American origin, before he crosses the 
threshold of the University. With an entering class thus equipped, 
the English Department might hope to invite at once to a spirited 
study of the development of literature, to an examination of the great 
laws of literary art, and finally to a survey of English literature in its 
comparative aspects. 


In the absence of any such preparation for what ought to be col- 
legiate work in literature, the students who come to the University 
require, for the most part, to be introduced to the body of literature 
itself, and two methods are in use to this end. There is a prescribed 
course of lectures on English literature which must be taken by all 
Freshmen, except the few who may have passed the admission exam- 
ination in English with high credit. This course varies from year to 
year, but in general is occupied with some marked historic period. 
Its chief purpose appears to be to interest students in the general 
subject, and it is a lamentable sign of the defect of our whole educa- 
tional system that young men of nineteen or twenty, who have been 
at school since they were six, should need this initiation into the 
most splendid achievements of their race and language. 

In addition to this prescribed course, we find a voluntary course 
whicli does not count for a degree, but does in a slight measure repair 
the defect of which we have been speaking. One of the instructors 
in this department has been giving, from time to time, lectures and 
readings, open to all members of the University, covering in a desul- 
tory way contemporary literature, with some glimpses of the con- 
temporary stage. The theory of the instructor appears to be that b}' 
taking up those books and plays which are most likely to be familiar 
to his hearers, he may be able to give intelligent direction to their 
appreciation and criticism, and help them in the formation of a taste 
for reading. It is, in a measure, an unacademic exercise, but it is a 
healthful and stimulating one. It is clear that under existing con- 
ditions one of the most important services to be rendered by the 
English Department is in arousing enthusiasm and inspiring an ardent 
interest in literature ; and it is encouraging to be told that the students 
who come under the direction of the department show themselves very 
open to advice as to the books they should read. 

We shall not attempt in this brief report to touch on the work done 
in the more special study of literature through the college course, pre- 
ferring to confine ourselves to the single point of contact which the 
University makes with the students who enter the Freshman class. 
"We might rest with the statement we have made of a generally recog- 
nized evil, but that we may not be absolutely silent regarding the 
possible correction of this evil, we venture, not so much to make a 
positive recommendation, as to offer a suggestion which is an infer- 
ence from the working of the present system. 

If the main purpose of the prescribed Course Aa is to give Fresh- 
men a general survey of some period of literature, and to excite their 
interest in the study, and if the voluntary course such as Mr. Cope- 
land has been giving, by its freedom and its familiar character attracts 


large numbers of men and starts the mind in this direction, what 
would be the effect if dependence for this result were to be laid wholly 
upon the power of the department to stimulate interest and awaken 
enthusiasm b} r courses of lectures upon which attendance should be 
voluntaiy, leaving the special academic work to be done by elective 
courses ? If such a plan were pursued the University would recognize 
the fact that students come up with indifferent knowledge of litera- 
ture, and would seek to meet the want of bringing its best force to 
bear in liberalizing the minds of the newcomers and inviting them, 
through the attractiveness with which literature may be set forth, to 
enter upon this great department of human endeavor, hitherto scarcely 
known to them. 

It ma} T be objected to this scheme that it would be futile to look for 
any definite or satisfactory results from what might prove to be merely 
popular lectures, such as should have no place in a strictly academic 
curriculum. But it may be questioned whether the present system of 
enforced lectures, even when accompanied by examinations, goes very 
far toward producing that exact knowledge which distinguishes the 
end of academic training from that of popular illumination, and it has 
been fairly well demonstrated by many experiments, such as the even- 
ing readings in great authors, the courses of lectures given by Mr. 
Black, and the readings and lectures by Mr. Copeland, that there is 
a large body of students always eager to take advantage of such 
opportunities to acquire a cursory acquaintance with literature and 
literary history. These means belong to the University by virtue of 
its humanizing function, just as the library offers browsing ground to 
students quite aside from their formal occupation. 

Having offered then this generous aid in supplying the defect of a 
previous training — a defect which we hope is but temporary — the 
University would be justified in offering to those students in every 
Freshman class who were qualified by their previous studies to under- 
take them, courses in the specific, academic stittty of single authors. 
If it be assumed, as we think it may be, that the reading of the stu- 
dent in the higher literature, up to this time, has been rather in 
American than in English authors, might it not be possible to offer 
courses in these authors which would serve not only to render this 
earlier reading available for purposes of scientific study, but to offer 
in the simplest most natural mode, an introduction to the analytical 
enquiry into literary power? The student who in his first year should, 
for example, take a course in Hawthorne, of whom he already knew 
something, and who was native to his thought, would thereby pass 
later more intelligently to the study of Shakspere, who was less 
familiar and more foreign. 


Moreover, the opportunity afforded by such courses would be a 
standing invitation to students in the preparatory schools to qualify 
themselves for such work. The work done in secondary schools 
should have distinct relation to the work that is to be done in the 
University, rather than to the fulfilment of the requirements of en- 
trance examinations, and if the University offered at once courses 
which supposed a fuller preparation in English than now exist, the 
stimulus thereby given to secondary education would be healthful and 

In conclusion, we note with pleasure the fact that more men than 
formerly are working in college with reference to the teaching of 
English, showing both that the demand in this field is increasing, and 
that the English Department is developing a genuine interest. It is 
true that these men have college rather than the secondary school in 
view, but the impulse can scarcely fail to be felt in both quarters, as 
the college and the secondary school come into closer relation with 
each other. 

All of which is respectfully submitted. 


Cambridge, Mass., April 19, 1894. 

Note. — Mr. J. B. Warner, the fourth member of the committee, took part in 
the conference, but is at this date out of the country. 



The most important event in the past year is the completion of the 
new fire-proof brick building, and the transfer to it of about 30,000 
stellar photographs. 

The second expedition to the Peruvian observing station has 
returned, and the third expedition has begun work successfully. 

The expense of the second Peruvian expedition proved much greater 
than was anticipated, and has caused a considerable deficit in the 
Boyden Fund. 

Fortunately the entire income of the Paine Fund is this year, for 
the first time, available for the use of the Observatory. Mr. Picker- 
ing's report states that : — 

" Until recenth 7 the highest meteorological station in the world has 
been that established 03" this Observatory on Mt. Chachani at an 
elevation of 16,650 feet. After making a careful examination of the 
volcano El Misti, Professor Baile}' has succeeded in establishing a 
station upon its top at an elevation of 19,200 feet. A path has been 
constructed by which mules have been led to the summit, and beside 
the meteorological shelter a wooden hut has been built upon the 
summit. A survey of the craters has been made, and a stone hut 
has been erected on the side of the mountain at a height of 15,600 
feet. The temperature, pressure, moisture, and the velocity and 
direction of the wind are now being recorded at the summit-station 
b} r self-registering instruments. The sheets are changed at intervals, 
thus giving a record of atmospheric conditions at a height hitherto 
unattempted. The use of beasts of burden at these heights offers an 
opportunity in the future of carrying instruments and conducting 
experiments at altitudes heretofore regarded as inaccessible for these 
purposes. The mountain, as seen from every direction, is an isolated 
sharp peak. It is, therefore, especially suited for the study of the 
upper atmosphere." 

Mr. Pickering states that certain observations at Cambridge are 
each year rendered more difficult. The introduction of electric lights, 
especially in the vicinity of the Observatory, greatly interferes with 
the observation of faint objects. Additional trouble is anticipated 
from the proposed introduction of electric cars on Concord Avenue, 
which forms the southern boundary of the grounds of the Observa- 


tory. A more serious difficulty is apprehended from the proposed 
widening of Concord Avenue, which, if carried out, would bring the 
cars still nearer the instruments, and would necessitate cutting down 
the row of large spruce trees by which the instruments are now par- 
tially protected from the dust of the road. The Committee, whilst 
regretting this state of affairs, sees no way of preventing the evil, 
which is caused by the growth of the city of Cambridge, which has 
surrounded the grounds of the Observatory formerly in an isolated 

The Observatory of Harvard College now occupies two permanent 
and well-equipped stations, one at Cambridge, Massachusetts, and 
one at Arequipa, Peru. At both stations the same general system of 
photographic investigation is pursued, which enables a uniform plan 
of research to be extended to the entire sky. The examination of 
the photographs thus collected has led to the discovery of a large 
number of interesting objects, including one new star, which appeared 
in the summer of 1893, many variable stars, and many stars having 
peculiar spectra. 

The need of a safe place for storage for this collection of many 
thousands of photographs has been met by the erection of a fire-proof 
building, provided by the generous contributions of friends of the 
Observatory, where the negatives can not only be securely kept but 
also conveniently studied. The importance of this building is in- 
creased b} T the recent construction of tne Bruce Photographic Tele- 
scope, now mounted at Cambridge, but subsequently to be sent to 
Arequipa. The large photographs taken with this instrument require 
a convenient and safe place of storage even more than the smaller 
negatives obtained previously. The new telescope is constructed as 
a photographic doublet, upon the plan first tried here with smaller 
instruments and found superior to that generally used elsewhere. 

Besides the photograph work mentioned above, the visual work of 
the Observatory is continued at Cambridge with the large equatorial 
telescope and the meridian photometer, and at Arequipa with the 
13-inch Boj'den telescope. 

The amount of material published is greater than usual, both as 
regards the volumes of Annals and the contributions to astronomical 

We have but to express our satisfaction at the manner in which the 
Observatory is conducted and at the energy and devotion of the 



May 23, 1894. 





To the Board of Overseers : — 

We, the undersigned, members of the committee appointed to visit 
the Jefferson Physical Laboratory and Department of Physics, having 
attended a duly notified meeting at the Laboratory building on March 
23, 1894. have the honor to report as follows : — 

We find ample evidence of a continuance of the zeal and efficiency 
in administration to which we bore witness in our last annual report. 
Our opinion in this regard is corroborated by the fact that Second- 
Year Honors in Physics have been conferred this year on seven 
students — the largest number so distinguished in any one 3-ear up 
to the present time. 

We note with regret that nothing has yet been done toward pro- 
viding the Laboratory with a suitable reference library ; and we 
suggest that the recommendations of our last annual report in con- 
nection with this subject are worthy of consideration. 

In compliance with the request of other members of the Committee, 
Professor Thomson has prepared the subjoined notes with reference 
to scientific investigation carried on at the Laborator}^ during the 
current year. 

During the past year, the work of scientific investigation carried on 
at the Jefferson Physical Laboratory under the direction of Professor 
Trowbridge has been closely connected with the most advanced work 
in electricity. It has often demanded that new methods should be 
devised, and that special appliances should be invented for carrying 
on the researches. Among the subjects studied may be briefly men- 
tioned the following : — 

1st. A study of the methods of measuring the factor of "impe- 
dance " in electrical circuits, together with new methods for deter- 
mining this quantity. A paper on this topic, describing the work 
carried on, is ready for the printer. 

2d. An investigation by Professor Trowbridge upon the theory of 
"electrical resonance." This is a comparatively new field of work 
in electricity, and the results cannot fail to have greater and greater 
practical value. The results obtained in the photography of electrical 


beats are most interesting and instructive ; and, at the same time, 
are evidence of great skill, not only in devising methods, but in 
obtaining the results of their application, and in photographically 
recording them. This work has included a consideration of the 
damping out of electrical oscillations, and the experimental results 
and photographs are of the greatest scientific value. 

The methods are akin to those which, in the hands of Professor 
Trowbridge, have given most beautiful results when applied to the 
study of the oscillatory character of condenser discharges. By means 
of a rapidty revolving mirror, discharges of Leyden jars in one circuit 
are compared with those induced by such discharges in a neighboring 
or parallel circuit, the capacity in which, as well as the turns of wire, 
may be varied. Bj T such variations, conditions of resonance may be 
brought about and recorded in the photograph of the spark discharge. 
When a condition of complete resonance is absent, the phenomena of 
beating are clearly shown. 

Other curious and, at the same time, most interesting and instruc- 
tive actions and relations are exhibited. The scientific value of such 
work in a new field is verj T great. 

A paper describing this work has been sent to the London Philo- 
sophical Magazine. 

3d. A study has been made of the change of period of electrical 
oscillations on iron wires. This work and its results form the 
subject of a paper by Professor Trowbridge for the American Journal 
of Science. 

4th. Work is being carried on concerning the behavior of dielec- 
trics under rapid oscillations, including the measurement of their 
dielectric constants. This is an extended work, and involves the use 
of new methods obviating errors present in older methods. Practi- 
cally very little is known of the subject with which this research 
deals, and there is room for much new and valuable work in this 

5th. Professor Trowbridge is also at work devising a crucial test 
of Maxwell's theory of displacement currents. The method of the 
test is to measure the work done by such displacement currents in 
cutting lines of magnetic force. Professor Trowbridge has confidence 
that his work in this direction will prove to be a valuable and impor- 
tant addition to the electro-magnetic theory of light due to Maxwell, 
and which has received so much experimental confirmation in the 
hands of Hertz and others within recent years. 

6th. A study is being carried on by the aid of photography con- 
cerning the nature and actions of long electric sparks. This is 
particularly with a view to obtaining some indications of the behavior 


of air under great electric stresses, such as exist with sparks of 
twenty to thirty inches leaping between the terminals of the appara- 
tus. Considerable light should be thrown upon the character of gases 
and the state of their molecules under great electric stress. 

Fortunately, we are now in possession of simple means for obtain- 
ing sparks of many feet if desired, whereas a few years ago great 
expense would have been involved in any such attempt. By utilizing 
the principles of high frequency induction, produced b} T condenser 
discharges over a comparatively few feet of wire, assisted by a spark 
gap and air jet playing thereon, there is no difficulty in meeting the 
conditions demanded in this research. 

7th. The Committee were much interested in experimental work 
being carried on by a graduate student, Mr. St. John, in connection 
with the propagation of electric oscillations along wires, and the 
nodal points therein exhibited. 

In this instance, a modified Hertzian spark oscillator was con- 
nected with two long parallel horizontal wires connected at the far 
end through a vacuum tube. After exploring the wires for the nodal 
points, it was shown that although the parallel wires were completely 
connected at the nodes by short wires, this did not prevent the 
vacuum tube from lighting by the discharge. 

A very ingeniously applied method of mapping the waves on the 
wires, involving the use of a sensitive bolometer for indicating the 
intensity or energj- of the waves at various points of the wires was 
shown, and the diagrams of wave distribution so obtained were quite 

The above is an outline of the experimental work involving new 
methods in fields of research which are of the utmost importance in 
the science of physics and electricity 

16 October, 1894. 


To The Board of Overseers : — 

In order either to confirm or to correct the opinions held by the 
undersigned as to the position which instruction in the German lan- 
guage should occupy in the general scheme of the University, the 
following questions were addressed to teachers of every grade active 
in the various branches of the institution : 

1. Is any of your work, or of the work of any student in the 
University under you, determined, or limited, or in any way affected 
by knowledge or ignorance of the German language on the part of 
such student, and, if so, how? 

2. Is knowledge of German required of any student in the Univer- 
sity for admission to, or for continuance in, any study under you, 
and, if so, how much knowledge, and how much is it used, and for 
what study or studies ? 

3. What proportion of the published work of yourself, or of any 
student, or students, in }-our department, is published in the German 
language, and, if any, in what books or papers? 

4. What remedy or remedies can you suggest for any evil suffered 
by the University or any student or students thereof through ignorance 
of, or imperfect knowledge of German. 

We beg leave to submit the answers received in the original ; but, 
for the sake of convenience, we present also in this report, grouped 
according to the different branches of study, abstracts of opinions 
expressed, especially in response to question 1, to which we respect- 
fully and urgently invite the attention of the Board of Overseers. It 
will be found that while a few of the professors, instructors or lecturers 
consider the knowledge of German as of little consequence to their 
students, an overwhelming majority of them, representing all con- 
ceivable varieties of study, agree, with singular concert of judgment, 
as to the desirability of that knowledge, differing only in the degree of 
their appreciation of it, some declaring the ability to read German 
merely helpful, while others pronounce it to be absolutely indis- 

We shall now let them speak for themselves : 


Professor H. P. Bowditgh, Professor of Physiology. 

1. I always advise students to familiarize themselves with the Ger- 
man language as an essential condition for keeping themselves posted 
with regard to the progress of medical science. 

Original researches in my own department (Physiology) would be 
impossible without at least a reading knowledge of German. 

Dr. W. McM. Woodworth, Instructor in Microscojjical Anatomy. 

1. Yes. Nine-tenths of my reading is German. A knowledge of 
German is absolutely necessary to a student of natural science, par- 
ticularly biolog3 T . Not that nine-tenths of all the work is done by 
Germans, but nine-tenths of the best work. This may be an extreme 
view, but I believe German to be indispensable to the student of 

A knowledge of German is necessary to every student doing ad- 
vanced work in zoology. This applies to reading. Students are often 
delayed or retarded in their work by the lack of knowledge of German 
and cases occur where the officers of the department have aided stu- 
dents by reading and translating German with them, thus consuming 
the time of both officer and student. 

Dr. F. A. Davis, Instructor in Physiology. 

1. In the work of the department of Physiology in which I am 
engaged continual reference to German publications is necessary. 
German is absolutely essential to the student of experimental 
physiology and to the scientist engaged in original research, as most 
of the advances in this branch of science emanate from Germany and 

Dr. G. W. Fitz, Instructor in Physiology and Hygiene. 

1. A student is seriously handicapped if he has not a good working 
knowledge of German, for much of the physiological work to which 
he must refer is in German. 

Professor W. F. Whitney, Professor of Parasites and Parasitic 
Diseases, aiid Curator of the Anatomical Museum. 

1. Most of the best work is published in German and it is very 
necessary that every teacher and student of human or veterinary 
medicine should have a good practical knowledge of that language. 


Professor M. H. Richardson, Asst. Professor of Anatomy. 

1. Yes. Many text-books and periodicals are written only in the 
German language. 

Every medical student should be able to read German with facility. 

Dr. Benjamin Tenney, Assistant in Anatomy. 
1. The work in the anatomical department by the average student 
would not be affected b\ T a knowledge of German either way. Stu- 
dents who desire to do advaneed work must have a reading knowledge 
at least. 

Dr. John C. Munroe, Asst. Demonstrator of Anatomy. 

1. Yes. My own work is decidedly increased by an imperfect 
knowledge of German. It is the language — a thorough knowledge 
of which is most important in my own reading, and it must be 
important to those under me who wish to consult other than English 
text- books. 

Ever}" graduate in medicine should be required to know German 
(and French) well enough to read ordinary medical works, at least, 
without any difficulty. 

Professor Thomas D wight, Parkman Professor of Anatomy. 

1. I do not think it is. I am very dependent on German for my 
reading, but ignorance of the language can affect my students only 
by limiting the range of their reading. 

Knowledge of it is certainly not essential for the average student. 

Professor W. T. Councilman, Shattuck Professor of Pathological 

The work of any medical man is seriously hampered by a lack of 
knowledge of German. This is particularly the case if. he wishes to 
undertake any investigations. 

Professor A. L. Mason, Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine. 

1. A knowledge of German sufficient for reading, at least, is of 
great service to students of medicine. Without this, much important 
recent medical literature is closed to them. 

Professor T. M. Rotch, Professor of Diseases of Children. 

1. Some of the best work on children is published in German, and 
a knowledge of the language on the part of mj" students would enable 
me to refer them to German publications. 


Professor J. O. Green, Clinical Professor of Otology. 

1. A knowledge of the German language is of inestimable value to 
students in my department. The majority of the best works in my 
department are in German, but the few students able to use them 
rarely do so, because their time is so fully occupied while in the 
Medical School. The proportion of our students who can read Ger- 
man is, I think, small. 

Professor J. J. Putnam, Professor of Diseases of the Nervous 

System . 

For my own work as a student of medicine a knowledge of German 
is indispensible, and even for the student it is highly desirable. The 
teaching of medicine has fortunately reached a point where text-book 
instruction is no longer sufficient for such a knowledge as the students 
are glad to get. 

All the better students have occasion to consult monographs fre- 
quently, and it is a great advantage to them to be able to consult 
those written in German and French, and a disadvantage to them not 
to be able to do so. It is especially important in the preparation of 
theses and reports for chemical conferences. 

Dr. P. C. Knapp, Clinical Instructor in Diseases of the Nervous 


1. My own work as a student of medicine, an investigator, an 
instructor, and a practitioner, is dependent in very large part upon 
my ability to read German with comparative ease and rapidity, owing 
of course to the well known fact, that a very considerable part of the 
most valuable work in my especial branch of medicine, diseases of 
the mind and nervous system, is published in German. 

As an example, out of eleven medical journals on that subject, 
which I take, four of them are German, two French, two Italian, one 
English, and two American, and the best of all are the German. 
German monographs are also as fully represented in my library. 

Dr. G. L. Walton, Clinical Instructor in Diseases of the Nervous 

System . 

1. A practical working knowledge of neurology may be acquired 
without ability to read German. But lack of facility in this direction 
offers a certain impediment to the thorough student in my department, 
for many of the best publications, from a scientific point of view, are 
written in German and not all are translated. 


Dr. H. C. Ernst, Asst. Professor in Bacteriology. 
1 . Yes ; for the reason that a large amount of the literature of the 
subject which I teach is in German, and any advanced student is seri- 
ously handicapped by being unable to use that language for reading. 

Dr. Arthur K. Stone, Assistant in Bacteriology. 

1. Until within a few years all the bacteriological literature has 
been in German. In the last years, there has been a large amount of 
good French and English work done, besides translations of many 
German works. But at the present time no one could attempt to do 
any original investigation without a working knowledge of the German 
language ; it is absolutely necessary, and if one could not read German 
he would have to employ some one to do it for him. 

4. That every candidate for the Medical School should pass an 
examination in both German and French. This would be only a 
short step in advance, but would be in the right direction. 

Dr. Henry Jackson, Demonstrator of Bacteriology and Assistant in 
Clinical Medicine. 
1 . I am an assistant in the department of bacteriology. A knowl- 
edge of German is necessary to obtain an accurate knowledge of 
original work done in this branch of science. 

Dr. C. M. Green, Instructor in Obstetrics. 

1. The time when the student will need a knowledge of German is 
after graduation, when he no longer has his instructors to keep him 
informed of advances made in medical science by the Germans. 

All college students who intend to study medicine ought to acquire 
a good reading knowledge of German. Although they may in no wa}' 
suffer from a want of this knowledge while the}^ are in the Medical 
School, owing to the fact that most of the teachers are German taught, 
they will need German in after years, if they are to keep abreast with 
medical progress. 

Dr. Myles Standish, Assistant in Ophthalmology. 
1. A knowledge of German is essential to any medical man who 
wishes to keep up with the literature of any branch of medicine. 

Professor O. F. Wadsworth, Professor of Ophthalmology . 
1. No. A knowledge of the German language is of much value for 
collateral reading in ophthalmology but at present no student in the 
Medical School pursues the subject far enough to make such knowledge 
of any importance. 


Dr. Vincent Y. Bowditch, Assistant in Clinical Medicine. 
1. The knowledge of German is most important to me in the stud}' 
of medicine. 

Dr. C. F. Withington, Instructor in Clinical Medicine. 
1. Of course a very important part of medical literature is pub- 
lished in German and no one who wishes to go into any subject of 
medicine exhaustively can afford tg deprive himself of the researches 
recorded by German workers. 

Dr. Edward W. Taylor, Assistant in Pathology. 

1. The work in which I am at present interested, viz. : The micro- 
scopic anatomy and pathology of the nervous system, demands an 
adequate knowledge of the German language. Recent publications 
in this line are written very largely in German, few of which have 
been or are likely to be translated into English. 

4. A study of German at the University seems to me highly desir- 
able for any student who proposes to carry on scientific work later. 
Even a little knowledge is often of service and should the study. of the 
language be continued abroad any preliminary knowledge will certainly 
be of distinct value. 

Dr. T. A. DeBlois, Clinical Instructor of Laryngology. 

1. So much medical writing and research is now done by the Ger- 
man speaking nations, that there is necessarily a great deal of it not 
translated. A knowledge of German particularly in my specialty 
(Laryngology), is certainly of great benefit to the student. 

Although my knowledge of modern languages is limited to French 
and Spanish, I believe that a knowledge of German would have been 
of infinitely more use to me than either of the above, and I think that 
German should be required for entrance to the Medical School from 
all students who have not graduated at schools which require it in 
their courses of stud}'. 

Professor W. H. Baker, Professor of Gynaecology. 
1. Scientific research by the student in gjmaecology would be 
greatly aided by familiarity' with the German language. 

Dr. F. H. Davenport, Instructor in Gynaecology. 
4. As a physician I consider that a sufficient knowledge of German 
to be able to read medical publications in that language is of advan- 
tage to the medical man, not so much in his student days as later. 
German is more useful than French in this respect. 


Dr. E. M. Buckingham, Instructor in Diseases of Children. 

1. Yes. Much work bearing upon the subject which I am teaching 
is published in Germany ; much of it soon becomes available through 
a good French abstract published monthly, and which has the great 
advantage of being condensed. I am speaking particularly of labora- 
tory work which has a practical bearing on clinical work. 

I am constantly asked b} T fourth-year men what to read and it is rare 
to find one who is willing to take up anything in German. Very likely 
the same men in the leisure of early practice might decide differently. 

I doubt if the want of German is a serious loss to undergraduates 
in medicine ; but in making a thorough study of sluj subject with 
which I am acquainted, such a study as would enable one to write a 
paper, one would often be hampered, and would always feel hampered, 
unless he could read German. It is necessary to an accomplished 
medical student ; it is not necessary to successful medical practitioners ; 
but I think the habit of publishing an occasional inquiry, as far as 
circumstances allow, puts one into a better state of mind for the 
ordinary work of practice. Therefore I think that a good reading 
knowledge of German is desirable for all medical men. 

Professor E. C. Briggs, Asst. Professor of Materia Medica and 


1. A knowledge of German would enable students to read many 
valuable articles published in Germany and not translated. 

Dr. John Homans, Clinical Instructor in Diagyiosis and Treatment 
of Ovarian Tumors. 

1. Yes. A large proportion of articles on surgery are written by 
Germans and the German Medical Journals are very instructive 

Dr. William H. Prescott, Assistant in Pathology. 

1. As a great deal of the progressive work in medicine is now 
being done in Germany a knowledge of German is of great value and 
assistance, although not absolutely necessary. 

Dr. T. W. Fisher, Lecturer in Mental Diseases. 

1. All use of German scientific and medical authorities must at 
present be confined to translations. And this would be the case 
until the whole class had a thorough knowledge of spoken German. 
Still, I regard ability to read German as of the utmost importance to 
all medical students. 


Dr. E. G. Cutler, Instructor in the Theory and Practice of Physic. 

1. My work is the hearing of recitations in a department of medi- 
cine, but the character of the work is quite different from ordinary 
recitations in that the instructor does three-quarters of it, and illus- 
trates b}' reference to the work of others, notably Germans, and uses 
sick people as illustrations (object teaching) you may say. The 
need of a fair knowledge of German is great, but not absolute. I 
would sa} r that such knowledge of German greatly enlarges the scope 
of the students' ability. 

Dr. Francis S. Watson, Assistant in Clinical and Gen ito- Urinary 


1. An important part — perhaps one-eighth — of the best work in 
nvy department of Surgery, as it does in almost all medical literature, 
comes from the Germans. Most of the progress that they contribute 
is sooner or later translated into English and American medical 
journals, or into English or American text-books. In the case of 
the former (medical journals) the translations are usually only sum- 
maries of the originals and are often unsatisfactory. In that of the 
latter long delays in translating occur and some of them are never 
translated. A third class of writing is very rarely translated at all, 
viz. : monographs and essays, and amongst these are some of the 
most valuable works of all. 

Professor J. C. Warren, Professor of Surgery. 

1. German is a most useful language to me in my work. It is to 
medical science to-day what Latin was in the last centuiy. « 

Most of my medical reading is in German books. 

Medical students who are able to read German ought to have a 
decided advantage over those who are not able to read the language. 

Professor M. H. Richardson, Asst. Professor of Anatomy. 

1. Yes. Many text-books and periodicals are written only in the 
German language. 

4. Every medical student should be able to read German with 
facility. I know of no remedy except enough study of the tongue 
to enable him to do this. 

Professor C. J. Blake, Professor of Otology. 

1. Very little, as most of the German text-books (Otology) appear 
in English editions. 


Professor E. II. Bradford, Asst. Professor of Orthopedics. 

1. None, directly. Surgical investigations in Germany are of 
value ; they are, however, quickly translated and abstracted in Eng- 
lish and American medical journals and students are rarely debarred 
from thorough and careful investigations which have stood the test of 
six months' discussion, though they may not have access to the 

A teacher, however, in surgery needs to go to the sources of in- 
formation and needs German as he needs French. 

Professor J. C. White, Professor of Dermatology. 

1. A knowledge of German is absolutely necessary to an instructor 
in dermatolog}', as the works of the greatest teachers and reports of 
the most recent advances in this department are chiefly expressed in 
this language. As a means of communication with a considerable 
proportion of the patients who make up the material of clinical teach- 
ing, it is also essential in these days of free immigration. To the 
student with no knowledge of the language some of the most impor- 
tant sources of collateral information are closed, and those who go 
abroad to continue their medical studies after graduation are most 
seriously handicapped through lack of it. 

Professor John Trowbridge, Rumford Professor and Lecturer on 
the Application of Science to the Useful Arts, and Director of 
the Jefferson Physical Laboratory. 

1 . A reading knowledge of German is essential to graduate students 
in physics. 

2. I do not require a knowledge of German at present, but believe 
that I must require it in the future for the higher courses in physics. 

Professor F. C. Shattuck, Jackson Professor of Clinical Medicine. 

1. It is desirable though not necessary that a medical student 
should be able to read German. 

Professor W. L. Richardson, Professor of Obstetrics and Dean of 
the Medical Faculty. 

1. A medical student is greatly helped by knowing German. 

Professor F. W. Draper, Professor of Legal Medicine. 

1 . No. A knowledge of the German language would be a valuable 
assistance, but it is not essential for the study of legal medicine. 


Professor C. S. Minot, Professor of Histology and Human 

1. Ignorance of German is a most serious disadvantage. The only 
good text-book of histologj' is in German. 

For advanced students of histology or embiyology knowledge of 
German is indispensable. I think about three-fourths of all the 
articles on these subjects are in German. 

4. German should be taught thoroughly in every course involving 
scientific study or research. In science it equals in importance at 
least any other two languages. 

It seems to me that no education of an advanced degree is complete 
unless it includes master}* of German. 

Professor E. H. Hall, Asst. Professor of Physics. 

1. In advanced courses of physics the student is expected to be 
able to read German. This is true of one or two of my courses. 

Professor R. H. Fitz, Hersey Professor of the Theory and Practice 

of Physic. 

1. I am in the habit of recommending German medical writings to 
such students as are able to read them. 

A knowledge of German is not essential on the part of the student 
but would prove advantageous as enabling him to obtain his own 
impressions from writers which must otherwise be interpreted to him 
by the mind of another. 

Dr. H. F. Leonard, Instructor in Anatomy, and Clinical Lecturer. 

4. None. Should any graduate desire to study in Germany, knowl- 
edge of the language would be valuable, or if any one cared to read 
works from that source. 

Dr. Arthur P. Chadbotjrne, Demonstrator of Experimental Thera- 
peutics and Pharmacology. 

1. Probably three-quarters at least of the literature needed for 
original work and investigation in experimental pharmacology and 
therapeutics is published in the German language. The laboratory 
being intended for such work, is necessarily limited chiefly to students 
in post graduate courses as investigators. Any student would have 
to be able to read German or else have it translated to him. 

Dr. Charles A. Porter, Assistant in Anatomy. 

mediJnTtf l kDeW ' W " ile a " "' lde «'^ that I was to study 
med, there were no courses then which seemed to me just what I 
wanted I passed Freshman German on entrance and my st 

wa"^ a H a : T r lled Geman u - pro - •* ^;/ ( 

mv Ge ma^'till 1\ r ""* ^ C0Uree8 l Sho " ld *™ continued 
regrettt g ( ^ " WaS J gave U u ? a " d »ow much 

Dr. H. F. Vickery, Instructor in Clinical Medicine 

4— ) good books are not avai,abi - «■?•«> (**-* **** 

4 For a medical man the knowledge of German is very desirable • 
fo a first-class medical man perhaps indispensable. I can make no 
valuable suggestions as to changing present methods. 

Dr. D. D. Slade, Lecturer on Comparative Osteology. 

ofWc W ° rk i" mj A ^ n ™ ni is ™^J limited by an ignorance 
o the German language through inability to consult works and the 
ht ature generally on the subjects pertaining to zoology, there be n* 

zt^z ed of standard authority ^ L *^z 

Dr. James H. Wrzoht, Assistant in Pathology. 
1. A practical reading knowledge of the German language would 

for thel. ^ '"^ t0 the mediCal St " dent in «* -tody of pftho.ogj 
tor the following reasons which occur to me J ' 

German^ ** leXt " b °° kS °" the ""^ ° f ^^ - written in 
(b) Because the more earnest students would be led to read in th„ 

-r:: ; h : f r:r ,nedicai iiteratu ' e ° f the ^ztxzi^: 

owe most of the advances ,n scientific medicine and pathoWv Rv 


Dr. Algernon Coolidge, Jr., Clinical Instructor in Laryngology. 

1. Not seriously. The number of English text-books for collateral 
reading in English is more than sufficient for a one-year's course in 
my subject. Some of the charts and illustrations which I use, have 
an explanatory text in German, but no student is practically ham- 
pered by this, especially as most of the anatomical names are Latin. 

I believe that a physician needs a knowledge of German much more 
after graduating from the Medical School than while in it. If the stu- 
dent enters the School without such knowledge it seems hardly advis- 
able to spend time on it to the exclusion of other work, but I should 
advise him to take it up in earnest after graduating when he has more 
leisure. Everything possible should be done to encourage men who 
expect to enter the School to devote attention to it. 

Dr. J. W. Farlow, Clinical Instructor in Laryngology. 

1. A knowledge of German is very useful to me in keeping up with 
the literature of laryngology. Most of the original work is done by 
Germans and it is a great help to be able to read the works in the 
original, rather than some short, and perhaps incorrect, abstract. 

I have a good many German patients, especially at the hospital, 
who speak very little English. 

Dr. G. H. Washburn, Clinical Instructor in Gynaecology . 

1. Not directly, but it is a very valuable acquirement for an}'one 
studying medicine to be able to use German. Many of the centres 
for the study of medicine abroad are German speaking, and there is 
much valuable medical literature published in German about which 
it is of value to keep informed. 

1 should consider it a good thing for anyone contemplating the study 
of medicine to take a course in German in the academic course. 

Dr. Edward Reynolds, Assistant in Obstetrics. 

1. Ability to read German periodicals and other literature is of 

Dr. Franklin Dexter, Demonstrator of Anatomy. 

1 . My own work could not be carried on at all without a fair knowl- 
edge of German. The work of students under me is, to say the least, 
limited without this knowledge. 

It seems to me that every man about to enter the medical profession 
should have a knowledge of German. The greater that knowledge, 
the better off he is. 


While a student, the English text-books may answer his purpose, 
but later on he will find that he will meet with great difficulties with- 
out a knowledge of this important language. 

A student can get on very well with English alone but as soon as 
he graduates German becomes essential. 

Professor C. P. Lyman, Professor of Veterinary Medicine, and Dean 
of the School of Veterinary Medicine. 

1 . No ; excepting that its possession is of very great personal 
advantage to the student. 

Dr. H. S. Parsons, Instructor in Mechanical Dentistry. 

1. A knowledge of German would not assist the students in doing 
the special work in which I give instruction, and a knowledge of it 
would not affect his standing in any way ; neither would it assist me 
in any wa}' that I know of. 

Dr. H. A. Kelley, Instructor in Operative Dentistry. 

1. The men under me are not required to have any knowledge of 
German, and the only help the language would be to them is the help 
it is to any broadly educated man. The most valuable literature in 
my profession is written in the English language and most of the 
advance in the profession is made by the English speaking people, so 
that German is not the help to our students that it is to the medical 

Professor Thomas Fillebrown, Professor of Operative Dentistry. 

1. In the Dental School, German is not used nor required, conse- 
quently the work of students under me is not affected by knowledge 
or ignorance of that language. 

Dr. D. M. Clapp, Cliyiical Lecturer in Operative Dentistry. 

1. A knowledge of German would give the dental student the 
power to read man}' articles and books of a professional and scien- 
tific nature published in that language. 

The responsibilities of the dentist and the requirements placed on 
him by the public are increasing so rapidly that it has now become 
imperative that his natural abilities, education, manual and mental 
training be the highest and most thorough possible. A knowledge of 
German would be the same, or nearly the same advantage to the 
dental student that it is to the medical student. 


Professor C. L. Jackson, Professor of Chemistry. 
1. All men working at chemical research must have a good reading 
knowledge of German. Without this, work would be very much 
hampered, if not limited. I think I might say that really thorough 
work would be often impossible without it. German is necessar}* for 
the student to obtain a proper knowledge of most of the work which 
has been previously done in his field. 

Professor E. S. Wood, Professor of Chemistry. 

1. It would be impossible for me to keep up with the times in medical 
chemist^ and to teach this subject satisfactorily without being able to 
read German. The same is true of any teacher in my department. 

Every student intending to take up scientific studies of any kind, 
and particularly if he intends to study medicine, should be encouraged 
to study German so as to be able to read it fluently. 

Dr. Wilder D. Bancroft, Assistant in Chemistry. 

1. Practically all the work done in physical chemistry has been 
published in German, and as very little of it has been translated, a 
knowledge of that language is indispensable. 

2. As the course of lectures which I give is optional, there is 
nothing required. All the references are to publications in German, 
as well as all text-books, so that the ability to read German easily 
would be required, if I we;e giving a regular course. 

Dr. Jay B. Ogden, Assistant in Chemistry. 

1. The work of the student in chemistry, more especially medical 
chemistry, is to a certain degree interfered with by ignorance of 
German, because some of our best medical works are in German, and 
comparatively few, one might say, have been translated. 

For a more thorough knowledge of his work he should be able to 
read technical German. I may instance my own case as a medical 
student and the manner in which I was handicapped by an inferior 
knowledge of the language. 

The current medical literature is largely written in German, and if 
a graduate is determined to " keep up with the times" he must have 
a knowledge of this language. 

Professor H. B. Hill, Professor of Chemistry. 
1. A knowledge of German is expected in the more advanced work 
in Chenlistry. Most of the current work in organic chemistry is first 
published in German periodicals. My pupils have usually had a 
sufficient preparation in German. 


Professor J. P. Cooke, late Eroing Professor of Chemistry and 
Mineralogy, and Director of the Chemical Laboratory. 

1. 1 think not, — at least in the case of good scholars. 

4. I do not think that the reading of literary German is of much 
value to the students of chemistry as an aid in chemical studies. 

The course in scientific German and a command of the vocabulary 
of the usual scientific terms is very important, and I recommend my 
students to limit themselves to the reading of scientific books unless 
they have a literary taste. I do not think it would be wise to require 
more German than is now demanded for the A.B. degree. 

Dr. T. W. Richards, Instructor in Chemistry. 

1. A very large part of the literature of chemistry is printed in 
German, and ignorance of the language is a serious hindrance to the 
advanced student. A number of men under me usually suffer more 
or less from this deficiency, and in consequence take more or less of 
my time for extra instruction. 

Mr. Elliot F. Rogers, Instructor in Chemistry. 

1. My work is in chemistry and it is almost needless to state that 
nearly half of its published work is in German. Therefore a knowl- 
edge of the language is absolutely necessary. 

Professor N. S. Shaler, Professor of Geology and Dean of the 
Lawrence Scientific School. 

1. The work of all the men in the classes in geology above the 
grade of the first year, or elementary courses, depends in some 
measure on an ability to read German ; for the evident reason that 
much of the literature is in that language. 

Mr. Richard E. Dodge, Assistant in Geology. 

1. Inasmuch as the course in which I am an assistant is an 
elementary course in geology, the work of the students therein is 
in nowise affected by their knowledge or lack of knowledge of the 
German language. I would say that I am somewhat personally 
bothered in m}- studies by the lack of an ability to read scientific 
German with ease. I always found the German vocabulary a difficult 
one to master, though I have a veiy good French one. Hence facility 
in reading German is an accomplishment I lack. The knowledge of 
German is very valuable in petrography and palaeontology, and no 
one can be a fine petrographer without a good working knowledge of 


Mr. R. T. Jackson, Instructor in Palaeontology. 

1. As an instructor in palaeontolog} T I would sa}*- that a knowledge 
of German is most desirable for students taking courses in this sub- 
ject. The best text-book on the subject is a German work and is in 
the laboratory for constant reference. While German is most desir- 
able for students taking the first course offered in this subject, 
namely, Geology 14, it is much more important, I may say essen- 
tial, for students taking the course in advanced palaeontology 
(Geol. 24). 

For the course in historical geology (Geol. 15) as at present con- 
ducted, it is not needed as much as in the two other courses, because 
American geological literature includes nearly all the books used or 
referred to in the course. 

Mr. Thomas A. Jaggar, Assistant in Petrography. 

1. Unquestionably yes. A student of petrography must under- 
stand German in order to read with intelligence the most important 
literature of the subject — that published in Germany. The same is 
true of all scientific specialties. 

It is not " required" in the University schedule of courses, but 
should be. For it is rare that the phrase, tc A knowledge of scientific 
French and German is desirable," deters students without such knowl- 
edge from taking the course. 

Professor G. L. Goodale, Fisher Professor of Natural History, 
and Director of the Botanic Garden. 

1. In my advanced course (research in the field of systematic, 
physiological and economic botany) a good working knowledge of 
the German language is expected. Without it, our students would 
be greatly hampered. 

Professor W. G. Farlow, Professor of C'ryptogamic Botany. 

1. It is desirable that all students under me should be able to read 
German. It is necessary for all in the advanced courses. 

Mr. N. T. Kidder, Instructor in Botany. 

1 . If any one wishes to keep abreast with the discoveries in the 
higher branches of botany, a knowledge of German is very 


Mr. Herbert M. Richards, Assistant in Botany. 

1. Ignorance of German would decidedly hinder the work of any 
student in special research in Botany. 

For the needs of this department a reading knowledge of scientific 
German seems to me to be essential. 

Mr. Arthur Seymour, Assistant in the Cryptogamic Herbarium. 

1. Mj' work is the care for the cryptogamic herbarium and to look 
after the literature of American mycology. 

There are no students in the University under me, therefore there is 
nothing for me to report upon in regard to students. 

For my own work German is an every day necessity ; my knowl- 
edge of that is not satisfactory but I make it answer. A large share 
of the most important books and articles relating to cryptogamic 
botany are published in German, as are also a considerable number 
of special papers. 

Professor E. L. Mark, Hersey Professor of Anatomy. 

1. It is next to impossible for students to carry on successfully any 
line of research work which they are likely to undertake, without suffi- 
cient knowledge of the German language to enable them to get at the 
meaning of ordinary scientific prose. It is not often that I have stu- 
dents otherwise sufficiently advanced who do not meet pretty well this 

In the undergraduate courses the students are continually referred 
to books and articles in German for information, which often cannot 
be had elsewhere. In some courses special topics are assigned ; the 
most of these require familiarity with German ; and when the student 
pleads his inability to make use of German, topics, the literature of 
which is principally in English or French, have to be selected. The 
importance and necessity of German is forced upon the student's 
attention from the beginning of his zoological work. 

Mr. G. H. Parker, Instructor in Zoology. 

1 . I have charge of two courses in zoolog}' which are taken mostly 
by juniors, seniors, and graduates. In both these courses the best 
text-books and man}- of the more important papers to which the 
students are referred, are in German. Those students who are 
unable to read German are at a decided disadvantage in doing their 


Mr. Winfield S. Nickerson, Assistant in Zoology. 

1 . It is not necessary that students in elementary courses in zoology 
shall be able to read German, though it is of advantage to them to 
consult text-books in German. 

In more advanced courses than that with which I am associated, a 
reading knowledge of scientific German is very useful and in research 
work in zoology is well nigh essential. 

Dr. C. B. Davenport, Instructor in Zoology. 

1. My work and that of nry students is in zoology. This science 
has developed more in Germany than in any other country ; the best 
periodicals are German, so are the best indexes to the literature. The 
greatest teachers are in Germany ; the method of the science is being 
most rapidly developed there. These facts indicate the way in which 
the knowledge or ignorance of German must affect zoological students. 
Research students, especially, must have access to the literature of 
their work. They are greatly limited if they do not have a full 
acquaintance with German. They ought to go to Germany to com- 
plete their preparation for research by learning German methods of 
teaching and investigation. 

Mr. W. C. Sabine, Instructor in Physics. 

1. During the current year the work in none of my courses is 
affected by the students' knowledge or ignorance of the German 
language. In a new course, however, to be given next year, a fair 
reading knowledge of German will be desirable but not indispensable. 

Mr. Leon S. Griswold, Assistant in Physical Geography and Geology. 

1. In my own w"ork it is often necessary to refer to German works 
and it is a matter of great regret that I did not give more attention to 
the study of German while in College, for it is a difficult matter now 
to make up the deficiency. 

The course of German " lc" would have been of great benefit to 
me had it existed in my time, and I think it should be recommended 
to students who intencl to study science. This course should give 
sufficient preparation for any needs in courses with which I am 

Professor B. O. Peirce, Hollis Professor of Mathematics and Natural 


1. I do not see how an advanced student can pursue any subject 
in mathematics or physics thoroughly unless he can read German. 


The results of a large part of the world's scientific work are printed 
onlj r in German, and for a bibliography of even the English literature 
of an} 7 part of mathematics or physics one must go to German pub- 
lications like the "• Fortschritte der Physik" and the " Fortschritte 
der Mathematik" in which all papers on these subjects in whatever 
language they may have been written originally are named and 

I am compelled to set the students in my courses somewhat below 
the height which I might expect my students to attain if I could be 
assured that they have some facility in reading "scientific German." 
A student of experimental physics ought to get the gist of 30 to 40 
pages of plain writing in German in an hour. 

Professor W. F. Osgood, Asst. Professor of Mathematics. 

1. In work in the advanced courses in mathematics, knowledge of 
German is indispensable. In many subjects the text-books to which 
reference is made, and nearly all the articles in mathematical journals 
pertaining to these subjects, are in German. A "reading knowledge " 
of German, as it is often called, such a knowledge as the student who 
takes up German in his Freshman year acquires at the end of that, or 
perhaps even the Sophomore year, is inadequate, for such a student 
is obliged to translate what he reads instead of understanding it in 
the original, and thus the language demands so much of his attention 
that it is difficult for him to understand the substance of what he 

Mr. J. L. Love, Instructor of Mathematics. 

1. My work is mainly the conduct of the courses in pure mathema- 
tics in the Scientific School, and covers the subjects, algebra, solid 
geometry, plane trigonometry, analytic geometry, differential and 
integral calculus. For my immediate work in these subjects a 
knowledge of German is not necessary on the part of the student; 
since there are abundant books of reference in English. Yet an 
ambitious student who desires to go more thoroughly into the higher 
researches of these subjects will find a knowledge of German to the 
extent of being able to read the language, of immense value, on 
account of the access to memoirs and treatises which are otherwise 
closed to him. 

But the work of a mathematical student in the Scientific School, is 
not in any serious way "determined, limited," or "affected" by 
knowledge or ignorance of the German language within the present 
scope and aim of these courses. 


Professor W. E. Byerly, Professor of Mathematics. 

1. In one of the higher courses of mathematics which I give 
this year the students need to read German with a fair amount 
of ease. 

Professor Arthur Searle, Phillips Professor of Astronomy. 

1. I have no students in charge. In my own work ability to read 
German fluently is indispensable. I have no practical occasion to 
write or speak the language. 

Mr. Willard P. Gerrish, Assistant in the Observatory. 

1. In general, my experience has indicated that a knowledge of 
the German language is often desirable in connection with abstract 
research, in view of the scientific activity in Germany and the pub- 
lications resulting therefrom. 

Professor J. M. Peirce, Perldns Professor of Astronomy and 
Mathematics, and Dean of the Graduate School. 

1. I cannot say that it is. I expect my students to be able to 
make use of German text-books and memoirs, when necessary. Of 
course I should be glad to have the students do so with more ease 
than at present, and still more glad if the references could be to 
English or French authorities. 

Mr. R. DeC. Ward, Assistant in Meteorology. 

1. A knowledge of German on the part of the students would 
enable them to do outside reading in German text-books and 
periodicals, but such reading could not be required, as the litera- 
ture in English is more than sufficient for any elementary course 
in meteorology. 

Mr. A. L. Rotch, Assistant in Meteorology. 

1. Not being an officer of instruction of the University, I can only 
reply to (1) as it relates to my own work in the science of meteor- 
ology. For the study of this, a knowledge of German sufficient to 
enable the student to read easily text-books and periodicals is abso- 
lutely essential. 

Prof. W. M. Davis bears testimony to this in the frequent reference 
to German literature in his class instruction. 


Professor I. N. Hollis, Professor of Engineering . 

1. Students of mechanical and electrical engineering find a reading 
knowledge of German very useful, but not absolutely necessary. 
There is no doubt that a knowledge of German, in so far as it enables 
a student to read the technical literature, is one of the elements of 
success in the profession. 

Mr. G. S. Rice, Instructor in Sanitary Engineering. 

1. I think the students would be much better equipped for their 
engineering work if they could read German. 

Mr. C. A. Adams, Instructor in Electrical Engineering. 

1 . It is very desirable for students in electrical engineering to have 
a good reading knowledge of German and although they all study 
elementary German they are not sufficiently familiar with it to make 
any considerable use of it. The best men, however, do make use of 
it, even though it be hard work at first. Although, as I have said, 
such a knowledge of German is desirable, yet in my opinion the 
greatest advantage derived from its study is the better facility in 
using the English language thereby derived, rather than the actual 
ability to read German intelligently. 

Professor J. B. Ames, Bussey Professor of Law. 

1. In the near future I shall probably give a course upon "legal 
history" in which students will find a knowledge of German useful, 
but not essential. 

Professor J. H. Beale, Jr., Asst. Professor of Law. 

4. Though a knowledge of German is not directly useful to a law 
student in this country, one who would get the best knowledge now 
possible of the origin and the history of our law, and especially of its 
relation to other systems of law, must of course be able to use Ger- 
man books. I regret my own inability to do so. If every under- 
graduate were given facility in the use of German books, he would be 
much better prepared to take up the investigation of any branch of 

Professor F. W. Taussig, Professor of Political Economy. 

1. In the work of all my advanced courses, and especially in the 
course on economic theory, I am hampered by the fact that the stu- 
dents, otherwise well equipped, cannot handle German. 


Professor C. F. Dunbar, Professor of Political Economy and Dean 
of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences. 
1. In public finance and banking the work is so far affected that I 
feel it practically useless to require the reading of anything which 
cannot be parallelled in French or English ; and although I make 
references to German sources, it is with the feeling that they will be 
used by only a part of the class. This often makes it necessary, in 
order to cover a German topic with certaint}^ (as e. g. in Taxation), 
to give it a disproportionate amount of time in my lectures. I must 
add that the state of things appears to me to be improving. 

Professor W. J. Ashley, Professor of Economic History. 

1 . In all the higher University work with which I am concerned, in 
the study of economic and social history, it would be a great advan- 
tage to the men to have a fair acquaintance with German. 

2. In "The History of Economic Theory down to Adam Smith," 
to read German is declared in the department pamphlet to be " de- 
sirable." In a class last year of some eight seniors and graduate 
students, two, if I remember rightly, showed that they could use 
German with ease, and one of these did an excellent piece of work 
for me and the class which would have been impossible otherwise. 

Professor F. H. Storer, Professor of Agricultural Chemistry and 
Dean of the Bussey Institution. 
1. As a teacher of agricultural science, my work in the University 
is largely dependent on that of German investigators. Without the 
German language I could do comparatively little as a teacher. I 
have always urged upon students at the Busse}' Institution that the}' 
should learn enough German to enable them to read readily memoirs 
and year-books relating to their profession, and I have induced many 
of them to do so. 

Mr. George P. Winship, Assistant in History. 
1. In general historical work German is most essential. My own 
experience is that students who become versed in German before 
entering college have a great advantage over those who take it up 
later, — although possibly the condition of the German department 
during my freshman } T ear may in part account for my feeling. 

Mr. Arthur M. Day, Assistant in History. 
1. In my own work as a student of history, political science, and 
economics, I find myself hampered somewhat by inability to read 
German easily. 


Professor Edward Channing, Asst. Professor of History. 
1. Yes. A knowledge of German on the part of all the students 
in Government 11 would be of considerable value. 

Professor P. H. Hanus, Asst. Professor of the History and the Art 

of Teaching. 

1. A man who is unable to read German easily is cut off from 
nearly all but the most elementary literature in the theory and history 
of education. 

2. It is impossible to require knowledge of German in my courses. 
Most of my students are graduates ; many of them teachers of experi- 
ence. In most instances such men are unable to use German as an 
instrument, because the modern language instruction offered by col- 
leges where these men were educated was inadequate, or because its 
importance was not sufficiently insisted upon either in admission 
requirements or college courses, or both. 

Professor Charles Gross, Asst. Professor of History. 

1. At the beginning of the year I ascertain which students can read 
German easily. About 10 per cent, of the class, i.e., about five or 
six out of fifty 1 - or sixty, generally answer in the affirmative. 

4. I believe the establishment of a course dealing exclusively with 
the histoiy of Germany and requiring considerable collateral reading, 
would not merely fill a gap in the instruction now offered by the 
department of history, but w T ould also help to stimulate the study of 
the German language. 

Professor Josiah Royce, Professor of the History of Philosophy. 

1 . All students of philosophy 7 , after their first year of elementary 
work in the subject, stand in very great need of German as a tool to 
use in all their further work. I am constantly 7 hampered in dealing 
with them by their difficulties as to German. Their present frequent 
inability in undergraduate years to use it as a tool lowers their work 
by a full third from what it ought to be. 

Professor Ephraim Emerton, Winn Professor of Ecclesiastical History . 

1 . The whole teaching of history is very seriously limited by the 
almost universal incapacity of our students to use German books. I 
continually urge my students to learn to read German by using it in 
their historical study. 

4. (1) An increased ability in German upon entrance. (2) A 
combined effort on the part of other departments to make students 
use German books. 


Professor F. W. Putnam, Peabody Professsr of American Archae- 
ology and Ethnology, and Curator of the Peabody Museum. 

1. The lack of knowledge of German affects the study in this 
department, but does not in any way limit or determine the study. 

While I certainly consider a knowledge of German as of importance, 
I do not consider that it is in this department of as great service as 
Spanish and French. Therefore I should advise the study of German 
without requiring it. 

Professor G. H. Palmer, Afford Professor of Natural Religion, 
Moral Philosophy , and Civil Polity. 

1. In my seminary Phil. 20c, and in advanced ethics Phil. 4, a 
knowledge of German would greatly profit my students, while I find 
many of my students have sufficient knowledge to use German books, 
I can never presume this knowledge in the case of any student. If I 
could, my own instruction might take a wider range. 

Professor Wm. James, Professor of Psychology. 

1. For my own work German is indispensable. For my students, 
especially in psychology, it is almost equally indispensable, and their 
insufficient ability is one of my chief hardships as a teacher. 

2. Not required yet, for it would reduce the students to three or 
four. It ought to be required however. 

Professor Hugo Munsterberg, Professor of Experimental Psychology. 

1. The psychological laboratory work which represents in the 
catalogue the course Phil. 20a, and which is open only to graduates, 
should have as a presupposition a fair ability to read scientific Ger- 
man literature. Fourteen graduates take it, most of them for three 
courses devoting almost their whole time to it. but only four men, 
who have studied in German}*, read German books easil}-. There 
is no doubt for me that all the others are seriously hampered by 
their insufficient knowledge of that language in which more than 
half of the ps3 T chological literature is written. To be sure all the 
men had a little German, but as the purpose of the course is original 
research, it would be often necessary to go over the literature of a 
subject purely as introduction, that is to look perhaps over some 
dozen magazine articles, etc., and I cannot expect this from men 
who need a whole evening to read ten pages of German ; an insuffi- 
cient knowledge is therefore not much better for my courses than no 
German at all. I myself don't emphasize these points in my courses 
because I am a German, and don't wish to appear to the students as 


exaggerating the value of my own language, especially as I am myself 
a beginner in English ; but there is no doubt for me that a require- 
ment of the ability to read German without friction would be for 
psychological laboratory courses just and right. We can miss 
French much more. For my psychological lectures German would 
be desirable but not necessary. 

Dr. Benjamin Rand, Assistant m Philosophy. 

1. In the years 1891-94 I have examined the work of the students 
in Phil. 1 (now Phil, la and Phil. 16), Phil. 3, 12, 15 (1891-93), 
and Phil. 4 (1894), and have likewise devoted special attention to 
the literature of philosoplrY\ 

For excellence of work in Phil. 1 (a and b) German is not necessary. 
In Phil. 3, 12, 15, and 4, a knowledge of German would always be 
of advantage. It is only the occasional student, however, who ex- 
hibits in his theses that readiness in the use of German for his philo- 
sophical investigations, which is undoubtedly desired alike by your 
committee and by the instructors. Possibly all, or nearly all, the 
advanced students have some knowledge of the German language ; 
but their acquaintance with it, on the whole, does not appear sufficient 
to induce them readily to apply their knowledge by consultation of 
the German authorities. An unmistakable preference is for the most 
part given to English sources of information. Nevertheless, such is 
the extent and richness of the German philosophical literature, that 
every possible encouragement should be given to a more thorough use 
of the German language. Under past methods of instruction the 
applied knowledge of German appears to fall just short of effective- 
ness for work in philosophy by advanced students. It is this extra 
amount of attention necessary for the practical use of the language, 
that needs, it would seem, to be supplied. 

Professor J. H. Thayer, Bussey Professor of New Testament 
Criticism a,nd Interpretation. 

1. Some knowledge of German is so important a requisite in a 
rounded theological training that the ability to read the language — 
after a fashion — has for man}' years been demanded with us of 
candidates for the degree of B.D. 

Professor D. G. Lyon, Hollis Professor of Divinity and Curator 
of the Semitic Museum. 

1. For students who intend to become scholars no subject offered 
in the University, except English, is so important as German. In 


citing German works in my lectures I am always aware of a 
serious loss on the part of those students who are ignorant of the 

While the courses of instruction are so conducted that they may be 
pursued by students who are ignorant of German, the best results 
cannot be obtained by such students for the reason that many of the 
most useful books in my subject are in German. 

4. I doubt not that a better grade of work would be made possible 
in the higher courses of instruction if a good reading knowledge of 
German were a requisite to the pursuit of such courses. For myself, 
I lose no opportunity to urge on students the importance of this 

Professor F. G. Peabody, Plummet Professor of Christian Morals 
and Acting Dean of the Divinity School. 

1. Much of m}' work would be more effective if I could freely use 
German sources. One course (Phil. 14, Philosophy of Religion) is 
drawn almost wholly from German sources. I can demand from the 
class, however, only what is translated. 

Professor C. E. Norton, Professor of the History of Art. 

1. In all advanced study of the histor}' of the fine arts a knowledge 
of German is essential. Even for beginners the best text-books are 
in German or are translations from the German. 

So, too, much of the most important writing on Dante is in German ; 
but the language is not indispensable for the student. 

Professor C. H. Moore, Asst. Professor of Design in the 
Fine Arts. 

1. A working knowledge of German is of much value to students 
in my subject. It is not, however, in all cases indispensable. 

Professor J. K. Paine, Professor of Music. 

1. In my courses I find a knowledge of German very desirable, 
but the majority of my students are not able to read the language. 
It would be a great advantage if the students in music could read the 
German text-books on musical theoiy, and, above all, the literature 
of musical history and criticism, which in German far exceeds that 
of any other modern language. 


Mr. H. L. Warren, then Instructor in, now Asst. Professor of 


Many of the most valuable technical and historical works on archi- 
tecture are written in German and it is of great advantage to be able 
to refer the students to them. At present I am able to do this only to 
a limited extent. In lajing out the new courses it will be my hope 
that the student shall acquire a reading knowledge of German as early 
in the course as possible. I have some thought of reading a German 
text-book on architecture with the students in the architectural depart- 
ment during some part of the four-3'ears course, if such a course is 
permanently established, in order to familiarize the students with the 
technical language of their special Fach. This is done in the archi- 
tectural department of Columbia College, I believe, with considerable 
success. If it were possible to require a reading knowledge of German 
before entering the course, it would be a great help ; but at present 
this would probably not be desirable. 

Professor F. D. Allen, Professor of Classical Philology. 

1. Not only are most of the best manuals in the various depart- 
ments of classical antiquities in German, but so are nearly all the 
periodicals in which yearly, monthly, and weekly progress in our 
science is registered, and a great many of the best explanatory com- 
mentaries on Latin and Greek authors. 

2. Not formally required. But I always assume it, and those who do 
not possess it are seriously hampered. In some courses (as the classical 
seminary) it would be impossible to do the work at all without German. 
As to the amount of knowledge, I should sa} r that ability to read easy 
prose rapidly and without a dictionary, and hard prose with a dic- 
tionary is about what is needed. Of course a knowledge of classical 
terms, used by writers on classical subjects is necessary, but these are 
mostly Greek or Latin terms which explain themselves. As to what 
courses, I should answer : All the courses in classical philology marked 
." Primarily for Graduates." 

Professor M. H. Morgan, Asst. Professor of Greek and Latin,. 

1. Every student of the classics must find himself limited and ham- 
pered if he is not able to use German works of reference and editions 
of the authors with German notes. 

Professor J. B. Greenough, Professor of Latin. 

1. Two or three courses which I ordinarily give almost require a 
reading knowledge of German. A few of the good scholars possess 


that, but the great majority are as helpless as a fish out of 

2. It is not now required, but in view of what I have said under 
the last question I hope to require it hereafter in Latin 10 and in 
Class. Phil. 20. 

Mr. Wm. F. Harris, Assistant in Classics. 

1 . To advanced students in the Greek and Latin courses a good 
reading knowledge of German is indispensable. Few of the men who 
take these courses know at the outset that they should take a number 
of German reading courses. I should think that timely announcement 
of this would be well, in the German and classical pamphlets, and that 
a profitable course or half-course might be arranged to kill two birds 
with one stone. Some semi-popular works in philology, history, or 
criticism might be read and some classic with German notes and intro- 
ductions might be studied, as Kiessling's Horace, Bergk or Christ's 
Histories of Greek Literature; or some such books could be read. 
Of course, the only trouble would be to find a man who could handle 
such a course in a way to do justice to both sides of it. But I imagine 
this would not be so very hard. 

Professor C. L. Smith, Professor of Latin. 

1. In the regular undergraduate courses in Latin, especially the 
more advanced, a reading knowledge of German is of advantage, but 
is not required. In the graduate courses such knowledge is indis- 
pensable, as it is in my own work. 

4. The elemental courses should be taught in smaller sections. 
The examination in elemental German for admission to college 
should include a test in the ivriting of simple German. 

Dr. W. N. Bates, Instructor in Greek. 

1. My own special investigations into classical subjects are carried 
on with the constant use of German books and periodicals. The 
ability to use German books of reference and annotated editions of 
Greek authors would be of great value to most of my students. 

Mr. C. P. Parker, Instructor in Greek and Latin. 

1. Often I have some more advanced course, for juniors, seniors, 
or even graduates, e. g., Juvenal, Pliny, Roman Stoicism. In these 
courses students might no doubt consult German notes, or such a 
book as Zeller's with advantage. But most of their work ought to be 


done with the Latin text itself. Moreover, Zeller is translated. The 
same is true of TenffePs valuable history of Roman Literature, which 
they need to consult at times. 

Professor W. W. Goodwtn, Eliot Professor of Greek Literature. 

1 . Every student in the higher courses in the classics here is much 
hampered and often seriously embarrassed if he cannot refer to German 
authorities. There is hardly a subject which I teach in which the 
best books of reference are not in German ; and I constantly tell 
students that, if they cannot read German easily, they must be con- 
tent with inferior books. 

2. They must read Meier & Schomann's "Attischer Process," a 
book of about 1000 pages, or a great part of it. There is no other 
book from which they can get the required knowledge. 

Professor A. R. Marsh, Asst. Professor of Comparative Literature. 

1. A reading knowledge of German is absolutely indispensable for 
students taking all higher courses offered by me. These are Comp. 
Lit. 1, 2, 21, 22. More than half the books used in these courses 
are in the German language, and I cannot admit to them students 
unable to use these books. Practically none of the books used are in 
English, for as yet English speaking scholars have written next to 
nothing of value upon the subjects treated. 

2. All attention given to writing and speaking German, except for 
the sake of obtaining accurate grammatical acquaintance with the 
language, is a waste of time for the student so far as my work is 

4. I do not think, however, that students sufficiently appreciate the 
importance of this tool, and I should like to see fuller statements of 
it, in connection with our announcements. 

Professor C. H. Toy, Professor of Hebrew and other Oriental 
Languages, and Biblical Literature. 

1. In many cases seriously restricted by ignorance of German, the 
best reference books being in certain subjects, in that language. 
Almost without exception I refer students for themes and theses 
and for general study to German works, without which a full inves- 
tigation of the subject cannot be made. Comparatively few students 
can do thorough research work on account of ignorance of German 
and French. 

In research courses knowledge of German is required in the Divinity 
School ; it is required for the degree of D.B. 


Professor LeB. R. Briggs, Professor of English and Dean of 
Harvard College. 

1. Not now; for now I have no regular classes. I talk to the 
Freshmen every other week in connection with their work in rhetoric. 
In one of my old elective courses German was useful but not abso- 
lutely necessary. 

Professor F. J. Child, Professor of English. 

1. With my class in old English (English 4) I use Matzner's 
" Alt-englische Sprachproben " far the best book for the subject, 
and an abilit} 7 to read ordinary German is indispensable for those 
who elect English 4. German is also desirable for those who take 
English 1 (Chaucer), since much that is valuable has been written 
on Chaucerian matters in German. 

Professor Adams Sherman Hill, Boylston Professor of Rhetoric and 


1 . No more than by knowledge or ignorance of any other language 
that has a literature. 

Dr. A. C. Garrett, Instructor in English. 

1. A large part of my own work, most of the more scientific work, 
requires intimate acquaintance with German. My facility in it is 
none too great (though adequate) because too little time has been 
given to acquiring the language. 

Of the five courses in which I teach, only one requires knowledge 
of German on the students' part, viz. : German Philology 13 (Old 
Norse). I have met no serious obstacle in students' knowledge. 
Occasionally one would not know the meaning of a German word 
which defined a Norse word. In English 3 (Anglo-Saxon) German is 
very desirable for comparative purposes, and in both that course and 
English 1 (Chaucer) very desirable in referring to philological works 
for elucidation, parallel reading, etc., but for neither course is a 
knowledge of German required. 

Professor G. L. Kittredge, Asst. Professor of English. 

1 . This is so inclusive a question that I hardly see how it is possible 
for any instructor (except some of those engaged in teaching in the 
most elementary courses) to answer it in the negative. Advanced 
work in any department must, of course, constantly throw German 
books and articles in the students' way, and ignorance of the language 
is then, of course, a disadvantage. Even when a student can " get 


along" in a course without knowledge of German, his work may be 
and in most cases will be kt affected " (for the better) by such knowl- 
edge. For my own purposes I desire, and, in fact, am obliged in 
some courses to require such a knowledge of German as will enable 
the students to use German books with facility, not merely occa- 
sionally but constantly. 

Mr. L. E. Gates, Instructor in English. 

1. A reading knowledge of German is required of students who 
take English 20<x. 

Mr. B. S. Hurlbut, Instructor in English. 

1. My work, English H and L, is affected in only one way by 
German. Occassionally I find a fellow who has read or talked Ger- 
man so much that he brings the German style into English composi- 
tion, and his English suffers accordingly. The remed}', however, is 
simple. I set him to work to read and write English. Cases of this 
sort are not very common. 

Mr. W. T. Brewster, Assistant in English. 

1. My work being wholly in English composition, the effect of 
German on the themes which I correct can be only indirect. I some- 
times think that students occasional!}' catch tricks of German style, 
but the amount of the German influence can hardly be measured 
and is, to my thinking, less palpable and harmful than that of the 

Professor Ferdinand B6cher, Professor of Modern Languages. 

1. The study of French is only indirectly affected by knowledge or 
ignorance of German. It is, however, very desirable that every stu- 
dent, whatever linguistic or literary studies he may pursue, should 
have a knowledge of the German language sufficient to use it. I find 
that in general, of late years, students in the higher courses of French 
have such a knowledge. 

Professor R. L. Sanderson, Asst. Professor of French. 

1. No; except inasmuch that the knowledge of one language 
beside one's mother tongue may be said to help in the acquisition of 
a second foreign language. 

4. That no student be allowed to take a course in which German 
books are read, — history, philosophy, etc., — unless he has done 
the equivalent of two years' German in Harvard. The equivalent 


might be reading done by the student alone, a thing not so difficult 
to accomplish for anyone who has mastered the rudiments, and is in 

Professor F. C. de Sumichrast, Asst. Professor of French. 

1. A reading knowledge of German is desirable for work in courses 
on literature. As a matter of fact most students taking such courses 
have at least a fair reading knowledge of the language. 

Professor B. H. Nash, Professor of Italian and Spanish. 

1. In the advanced courses (Spanish and Italian) a fair reading 
knowledge of the German language is of great value. Much of the 
best critical and expository work on the Spanish and Italian classics 
is published in German, and of this very little is translated into Eng- 
lish. Valuable works on the history of Italian and Spanish literature, 
especially monographs on particular periods or particular branches, 
such as " The Drama," " The Origins of the Literature," etc., are in 
the same case. If the student can be referred to these works his 
resources are greatly enlarged and the instructor is saved the time 
that he would be obliged to devote to making the contents of these 
books available to the student. The best bi-lingual modern dictionary 
of Spanish is Spanish-German, German-Spanish. 

Professor E. S. Sheldon, Asst. Professor of Romance Philology. 

1. The question only arises in connection with the courses in 
Romance Philolog}' in my case. There it is necessary to use German 
books somewhat, and I think the tradition is fast becoming estab- 
lished that students taking these courses must be able to use books in 

4. Much practice in reading at sight in the elementary courses in 
German. This is, I suppose, already one of the means employed in 
these courses. 

In this remarkable array of professional opinion the statement 
frequently recurs that a "reading knowledge" of the German lan- 
guage on the part of the students would greatly facilitate the work of 
the teachers by enabling them freely to refer their pupils to German 
authorities, and would also greatly aid the students by enabling them 
to enlarge their reading with ease, — yet that such knowledge is in 
many cases not absolutely necessary to the students so long as the}* 
are still under the guidance of their teachers, for the reason that the 
teacher may be assumed to be capable of supplying what the students. 

for want of that knowledge, may not be able to find out for them- 
selves, — but that the knowledge of the language becomes actually 
indispensable to the students, or at least to those of them who have 
the ambition of keeping abreast of the progress of the time in the 
various departments of science in which they are engaged, as soon as 
they leave that guidance behind them and have to fall back upon their 
own resources. This is undoubtedly true. It is at the same time a 
most cogent reason why the University should see to it that its stu- 
dents, before it sends them forth into the world, should be well 
equipped with so needful a tool of study. The quantity of positive 
knowledge which even the best institution of learning can impart to 
its pupils, is necessarily very limited. So much more important is it, 
that it should cultivate and develop in them to the highest possible 
degree the ability to learn more. 

It will be observed that the opinions elicited from the officers of 
instruction without the department of German bear almost exclusively 
upon the usefulness of a knowledge of German as a means to facilitate 
further study. It is hardly necessary to add that such knowledge 
will also be apt greatly to benefit the student by introducing him to 
German modes of reasoning and methods of inquiry, which enjoy a 
well-deserved reputation for comprehensive grasp and conscientious 
thoroughness, and by opening to him a literature other than scientific 
which abounds in the richest treasures. In both respects it is likely 
to aid in the development of tendencies most beneficial to the charac- 
ter of the mental activities of our people. 

What is actually aimed at and accomplished in the German depart- 
ment of Harvard University is set forth in the following statements 
made by the professors and instructors employed in it in answer to 
the following questions : — 

1. Please state generally or particularly the object which you try 
to accomplish with the students in your courses in the University. 

2. Please state the actual results. 

3. In your opinion (and with reference to the German language) 
what changes, if any, should be made in methods of instruction or 
examination, or in requirements for admission to the University, or 
for degrees in any department of the University, and what are the 
facts and reasons which lead you to that opinion ? 

Professor George A. Baktlett, Regent, and Associate Professor of 


Question 1 . Please state generally or particularly the object which 
you try to accomplish with the students in your courses in the 


Answer. I have now (owing to the duties of "Regent"), but one 
course, an elementary course composed of Freshmen who passed the 
elementary examination for admission. My purpose is a twofold 

(1) I desire to teach the students in such fashion that at the begin- 
ning of their Sophomore year they may be able to read ordinary 
German with some degree of ease. 

(2) It is expected that the better men in the course, may, in their 
Sophomore 3 r ear be able to pursue, with profit, course 2, 3, or 4, and 
with this end in view they are given a great deal of practice in writing 
German and in committing to memory extracts from German authors 
(in prose and poetry). 

Question 2. Please state the actual results. 

Answer. About one-third of the men in Course C learn to read 
German well and to write easy translations into German correctly. 

Question 3. In your opinion (and with reference to the German 
language), what changes, if any, should be made in methods of 
instruction or examination, or in requirements for admission to the 
University, or for degrees in any department of the University, and 
what are the facts and reasons which lead you to that opinion? 

Answer. I have no suggestions to make regarding the methods 
of instruction or examination in German in the University, believ- 
ing they are as good as we can make them under existing 

Regarding the entrance examination I have two points to touch. 

(1) I believe that the requisition for Elementary German should be 
strengthened b} T the addition of a test in grammar and in the transla- 
tion of easy English sentences into German, and that the time given 
to the examination should be extended to two hours. 

My reasons for this are that the present test is an insufficient one 
and leads to slovenly and "cramming" preparation. 

(2) It seems to me that the whole scheme of our admission ex- 
aminations would be improved if the Advanced German were accepted 
as a substitute for Elementary Greek. 

My reasons are two-fold. (1) A great many students desiring to 
devote themselves largely to the study of Natural Science, History. 
Sociology, Political Economy, and kindred subjects need an advanced 
knowledge of German at the very beginning of their college career. 
(2) It would be of advantage to the student and to the language itself 
(as a means of mental training) if Greek were begun in college when 
the student is already master of Latin, French, and German, and his 
mind is mature enough to appreciate and take advantage of the Greek 


Dr. Max Poll, Instructor in German. 

Letter in reply to the said three questions to the department of 

In German A I try to teach the student so much German as to 
enable him to read esLsy prose or poetry at sight, to acquire a correct 
pronunciation, to be well versed in grammar, and to know the most 
important rules of the syntax as well as to translate easy English 
sentences into German. In order to accomplish this, much time, one- 
third about, is devoted to grammar and composition. In reading, my 
principle is (1) not to translate a word that has not been read; 
(2) in the first months to translate every word of the lesson prepared 
at home, later in the year only the difficult passages, and to read at 
sight as much as possible. In order to improve the pronunciation 
poems are learned by heart and recited in the classroom. As to the 
actual results I venture to say that the average student finds no diffi- 
culty in understanding a book written in easy German and knows the 
principal elements of grammar well. In regard to composition I am 
sorry to say the result is unsatisfactory, probably on account of the 
insufficient time that we can devote to it. 

In German B I pursue the same principles as in German A. As 
this course, however, is meant to prepare students for third year 
German in one year, the number of books read during the year is 
considerably larger and of more difficult style. Not only a great deal 
of English is translated into German, but during the last part of the 
year the student has to write short themes in German. As the major- 
ity of the students of this course enter either 2, 3, 4, or 6, in which 
lectures are given in German, in which the} r have to take notes, I try 
to make the sound of the German language more familiar to the 
students' ear Iry dictating to them short stories. The object of this 
course is (1) to prepare in one 3 T ear beginners in German for 2, 3, 4, 
or 6, or to enable students to use German text-books in other studies. 
I think that the intelligent student finds his preparation in German B 
adequate to his wants. German 2 is meant to give the student a 
detailed knowledge of Lessing, whose principal works are read, while 
the minor works of Lessing, or such as are not suitable for being read, 
are dwelt upon in lectures. The course, however, does not restrict 
itself to the writings of this one poet, but it tries to make the student 
acquainted with some of the standard works of other authors and with 
the history of literature of the classical period. I am pretty sure that 
the average student, after having taken this course, is well able to 
read any work in German literature, and I trust that his interest in 
German has been sufficiently awakened so that he will continue his 
studies in this particular line. 


Mr. Alfred B. Nichols, Instructor in German. 

Question 1 . Please state generally or particularly the object which you 
try to accomplish with the students in your courses in the University. 

Answer. (1) In German A my methods and results coincide so 
nearly with those concerning which Dr. Poll has made a somewhat 
full statement, that I beg to refer the Committee to that statement. 

(2) In German lb the year is devoted to training in reading more 
difficult (historical) prose. Attention is paid to the text in the noting 
of synonyms, of derivation, etc , as far as such things have a practical 
value towards forming a vocabulary. Much is read at sight, and the 
students are constantly drilled in giving in their own words the thought 
of the author, both orally and by written work in the classroom. 

(3) In German E the object is the study of the grammar and 
simple prose composition. 

(4) In German 6 the same methods are followed on the whole as 
in lb, the course being a more advanced one in the same line. The 
subject matter is historical during the first half-year, while in the 
second literary and esthetic criticism is taken up. The course deals 
with as difficult German as the student is ever likely to come across. 
No translating is done, and the student is expected to master the 
authors' ideas and be able to reproduce them in his own words. 

Question 2. Please state the actual results. 

Answer. (1) In German A I will again refer the Committee to 
Dr. Poll's account. 

(2) In German lb the student is able to read more difficult German 
with some ease by the end of the year. 

(3) In German E (which is resorted to largely by men deficient in 
their grammar) the result is the ability to write simple prose that is 
grammatical though not very idiomatic. 

(4) In German 6 the men reach a point where the}" feel themselves 
sufficiently masters of the language to depend on themselves in their 
further prosecution of it. They obtain incidentally more knowledge 
of German history and some insight into German habits of thought. 

Question 3. In your opinion (and with reference to the German 
language) what changes, if any, should be made in methods of instruc- 
tion or examination, or in requirements for admission to the Univer- 
sity, or for degrees in an}" department of the University, and what 
are the facts and reasons which lead you to that opinion ? 

Answer. I do not know that I can add anything of value to what 
has been already discussed with the Committee. The department is 
much at one, I conceive, on the evils resulting from insufficient 
preparation, from the size of the sections, and other points, recapitu- 
lation of which seems superfluous. 


Dr. Heinrich Conrad Bierwirth, Instructor in German. 

Letter in reply to the said three questions to the department of 

As most of my work is elementary and introductory to the higher 
courses, I try above all things to encourage the student and to show 
him that by dint of a little hard and faithful work from the start he 
can soon attain some tangible results, i.e., get so far as to read easy 
German without constant thumbing of the dictionary and without a 
surfeit of grammar. But, since I am also firmly persuaded that 
everj'body who desires to make German really useful as a tool must 
sooner or later master certain grammatical forms and syntactical con- 
structions, — I never neglect to point out to the student where his 
failure to understand the context is obviously due to his lack of gram- 
mar, and thus to convince him that he would be none the worse off 
for knowing something more about forms and inflections. This argu- 
mentum ad hominem if put home kindly and without reproach or 
censure, so as not to humiliate the student too much, I find persuasive 
and effective. It often reconciles him to the much tabooed subject 
of grammar when he comes to see the good and the necessity of it, 
and it really prepares him in a more thorough way for difficulties 
which he is sure to meet in advanced work and which, if encountered 
without such preliminary training in the science of language, are apt 
to discourage or even upset him later. In this general method and 
practice I have been confirmed by my experiences in German (7, our 
intermediate course. Mow easy it is to prepare boys for the minimum 
admission requirement in German, where no grammatical knowledge 
is insisted on, is evident from the fact that there are always students 
in Course C who have prepared for the entrance examination, not in 
a year, but in three or four months. This year I even have a student 
who managed to do it in three weeks. On the other hand, it is very 
hard to make students whose grammatical training has been neglected 
for the sake of preparing them quickly (and, of course, only super- 
ficially), gather up the loose threads and do in the second year what 
ought to have been done once for all in the first. It is disheartening 
to botli teacher and pupil. In my opinion, therefore, it would be no 
more than common justice to the student if we insisted in our admis- 
sion examinations on a modicum of grammatical knowledge which 
would oblige the candidate to prove that he is not merely guessing at 
the sense of a given passage, but that he also knows what he is about 
and is prepared to go through the second year's work without laying 
the foundation over again. 


Dr. Benjamin Lincoln Robinson, Instructor in German. 

Question 1. Please state generally or particularly the object which 
you try to accomplish with the students in your courses in the 

Answer. The object of German h\ the course under my charge, 
is to assist scientific students to a ready and practical reading knowl- 
edge of average technical German. Experience shows that among 
the students who take the course the chief requisite for the end in 
view is a more copious and accurate vocabulary. Accordingly, special 
attention is given to drill in and discussion of technical terms in Ger- 
man with their exact English equivalents. Breadth and accuracy of 
vocabulary are the first aims of the course. An effort is also made 
to interest the students in the subject matter. When this is done 
their German progresses much more rapidly and with much less con- 
scious effort. To this end questions and brief and informal discus- 
sions are encouraged in the class. 

The accuracy of the student's reading knowledge is constantly 
tested by translations, both written and oral, of sight selections as 
well as set passages. Beside these, diagrams are frequently required 
of scientific apparatus described in the German text as well as accurate 
chemical formulae, etc. 

Question 2. Please state the actual results. 

Answer. At the end of the year about half to two-thirds of the 
class can read accurately, at sight, the German of average scientific 
text-books in the subjects of which they have the requisite scientific 
knowledge to understand the subject matter. The remainder of the 
class, with few exceptions, can do the same with a slight use of the 

Question 3. Answer. No suggestions. 

Professor Hugo K. Schilling, Asst. Professor of German. 

Question 1. Please state generally or particularly the object which 
you try to accomplish with the students in your courses in the 

Answer. German A. — Object : To give the students a thorough 
knowledge of the outlines of German grammar (accidence and the 
main points of syntax) ; to accustom them to correct pronunciation 
(on their own part as well as on the part of the teacher, that is, both 
in pronouncing German words and in identifying words pronounced 
\>y the teacher) ; and to enable them to read simple German prose at 
sight and to translate easy English prose into German. 


German 3. — Object: To give the students a general knowledge of 
German classics of the 18th century and a thorough acquaintance 
with the life and works of Schiller ; to enable them to understand 
connected lectures in German ; to train them to read German classics 
intelligently and appreciatively without translating them ; to arouse 
in the student an interest in German literature generally ; and to 
stimulate independent thought and criticism by means of themes on 
literary subjects usually connected with the reading. 

German G. — Object: Practice in writing German themes, with 
special reference to advanced syntax and to the cultivation of a good 
style in addition to grammatical correctness. 

Germanic Philology 18. — Object: The elucidation of the texts 
most commonly read in the study of the various Germanic dialects, 
by means of the discussion of the public and private life of the 

Germanic Philology 20?>. — Object : Critical study of middle high 
German texts and original investigations by the students. 

Question 2. Please state the actual results. 

Answer. In regard to the actual results of the work in these 
courses, it is safe to say that the objects above stated are, on the 
whole, successfully accomplished. 

In German A no student is allowed to pass who cannot read simple 
prose at sight with considerable facility, or who is not familiar with 
the main facts of German grammar ; there are always some students 
in each class who will make practically perfect translations from the 
German, and into German, in the mid-year and final examinations. 
There are also, of course, some who take the course only because it 
is required and who do not exert themselves sufficiently to become 
very proficient. 

In German 3 the students acquire considerable facility in the read- 
ing of German classics and in the writing of themes ; they learn to 
understand German lectures and to take notes in German ; they do a 
great deal of outside reading, of which they have to give an account 
in occasional tests, as well as in the general examinations ; in the 
class room they answer questions concerning the reading in German 
and explain difficult passages, as a rule, without translating them. 

In German G the work is, on the whole, very satisfactory, the men 
who take this course being, almost without exception, very much in 
earnest. The themes are creditable pieces of work, and though even 
the best students will occasionally make grammatical mistakes, the 
average theme shows on the other hand a gratifying command of 
words and phrases, considerable skill in constructing German periods 
and a frequently surprising familiarity with idiomatic expressions. 


Germanic Philology 18 and 20b are new courses and have not yet 
been given. 

Question 3. In your opinion (and with reference to the German 
language) what changes, if any, should be made in methods of in- 
struction or examination, or in requirements for admission to the 
University, or for degrees in any department of the University, and 
what are the facts and reasons which lead you to that opinion ? 

Answer, (a) In German A the number of instructors should be 
larger; the sections should not contain more than, at most, 30 stu- 
dents each ; in elementary work, classes of from 40 to 50, as at 
present, are entirely too large. 

(b) The present admission examination, requiring, as it does, only 
the translation of simple German prose, is inadequate ; the paper 
should include at least a few easy English sentences for translation 
into German. 

Professor Hans Carl Gunther von Jagemann, Asst. J y rofessor of 


Letter in reply to the said three questions to the department of 

In reply to the questions asked by the Committee on German con- 
cerning the aims and results of my teaching, I beg to state, in the 
first place, that my work, as at present arranged, is not so homogeneous 
that I could give the same answers with reference to the several dif- 
ferent courses I am now conducting. 

(1) The most elemental^ of my courses, designated officially as la, 
is a course which immediately follows the beginners' course A. The 
object which I try to accomplish in this course is to lay a sound lin- 
guistic foundation for the higher literary courses to which students 
pass from my course, so that when they enter those courses they may 
be able to read German classics as literature and not as a series of 
sentences illustrating grammatical principles or idioms. I also try, 
by exercises in writing from dictation, to accustom the student to the 
sound of the language when spoken, so that he may the sooner be 
able to follow lectures in German in those higher courses. In addi- 
tion to this, weeklj 7 exercises in German composition accustom the 
student to express himself in German with some degree of readiness 
and accurac} T on e very-day topics and enable him to begin, in the 
higher courses, the writing of German compositions on easy subjects 
connected with his reading in German literature. As regards the 
results in this course, they can best be estimated by the grade of 
work that can be and is accomplished in the courses of the next 


grade with the students that puss out of my course into these higher 
courses (officially designated us 2, 3, 4, 6). For my own part, I 
can onl}- say that I think the results are commensurate with the 
labor expended ; they are all that can be expected of the average 
Harvard student after a two-years' study of a difficult subject like 

(2) My other courses are all of a very advanced grade; their 
object is the study of the older stages in the history of the German 
Language and literature. They are not intended as courses giving a 
student a reading knowledge of modern German, or a practical com- 
mand of the language, or an introduction to German literature. They 
presuppose a sound knowledge of modern German, and the}- stand in 
the same relation to the courses in modern German and modern Ger- 
man literature as the courses in Anglo-Saxon, Early English, and 
History of the English Language, to the courses in Modern English 
Literature and English Composition. They are intended for men 
who want to fit themselves to become teachers of German and spe- 
cialists in German Philology. It would be difficult for me to sum- 
marize the results accomplished in the various courses otherwise than 
by stating that in m} T opinion the objects of the courses as stated in 
the department pamphlet are accomplished. 

(3) In regard to the requirements for admission, I wish to call 
attention to the fact that the German department, in connection with 
the French department, several years ago proposed to the Faculty to 
raise these requirements by the addition of a requirement in grammar 
or composition. This proposition was defeated. Since then, the Con- 
ference on Modern Languages, under the direction of the Committee 
of Ten, of which President Eliot was chairman, have proposed these 
same requirements (see their report, p. 102). As it is generally 
hoped that the recommendations made in this report will sooner or 
later go into effect in all the secondary schools in the country, it 
would seem natural that Harvard should be one of the first institu- 
tions to aid this movement, by compliance with the above recom- 
mendations, in making them the basis of her admission requirements. 
These recommendations, both as to Elementary and Advanced Ger- 
man, are in accordance with my ideas. 

Professor Kuno Francke, Asst. Professor of German Literature. 

Letter in reply to the said three questions to the department of 

I beg to submit the following statements in answer to your circular 
of March 2, 1894: — 


1. The first question calls for a statement of the aims which guide 
me in my work as a teacher of German literature at this University. 
Let me say at the outset that my own University training under men 
like Giesebrecht and Paulsen, as well as my subsequent position as 
kC Mitarbeiter " on the u Monumenta Germaniae Historica," have 
forced upon me the conviction that the most fruitful way of studying 
a given literature is to look at it as an expression of national life 
rather than as a linguistic phenomenon or a manifestation of indi- 
vidual genius. The whole aim of my activity at this University I, 
therefore, find in giving to the students under m} T instruction as clear 
a conception as I can of German literature as a reflex of German life. 
In order to do this successfully it is necessary to consider literature 
in its connection with other forms of national life, in its relation to 
the social and political conditions of the masses, to the great religious 
and philosophical movements, to the leading tendencies in the fine 
arts, to the ideals of culture dominating the successive stages of 
national development. It would be clearly a vain attempt to intro- 
duce the student at once into the midst of this complicated organism 
of interdependent intellectual forces. The only rational method is 
a gradual approach toward it. My work, therefore, begins with a 
course (German 4) of a biographical character, of which Goethe is 
the central figure, while the other great literar}' men of the classical 
period of the 18th century are considered as leading up to him or 
revolving about him. The next stage consists in a course (German 
5) in which the whole development of German literature from the 
earliest times to the end of the 18th century is brought out, mainly in 
its relation to the corresponding social and political development. 
The old Germanic epics, for instance, are here treated as a reflex of 
tribal life at the time of the migrations, the middle high German epics 
and lyrics as a reflex of the culture of mediaeval chivalry, the litera- 
ture of the 15th and 16th centuries as a reflex of the growth of the 
middle classes, the literature of the 17th century as a reflex of princely 
despotism, the literature of the 18th century as a reflex of the move- 
ment for individual liberty. There follows a course (German 9) 
dealing with German literature and art from the 13th to the 16th 
century. Here I try to show how the whole literary and artistic life 
of the German people for three centuries tends toward the crowning 
achievement which is finally reached in the Reformation ; the delivery 
of the individual conscience and intellect ; how the inner life asserts 
itself against traditional conventions, and the direct truthfulness of 
the Volkslied and the Miracle Plays in the satire of the Schwank 
literature, in the realism of painting and sculpture from the Van 
Eycks to Peter Vischer and Diirer, in the ascetic self -observation of 


the Mystics, in the joyful self-exaltation of the Humanists, — until 
Luther by combining all these single tendencies into one mighty 
stream revolutionizes the whole system of mediaeval hierarchy. At 
pe end of this line there stands a course (German 11) in which I con- 
sider the main public tendencies of German life from the middle of 
the 18th to the middle of the 19th century, as reflected in literature. 
The transition from the individualism and cosmopolitanism of the age 
of Herder, Kant, Schiller, and the early Romanticists, to the collec- 
tivism and nationalism of Fichte, Hegel, and the later Romanticists ; 
the effects of the Napoleonic wars and of the Restoration upon litera- 
ture, and the intellectual movements leading to the revolution of 
1848, form the main topics of this course. Somewhat aside from 
this whole series of studies there stands a course (Germ. Phil. 19) in 
whieh I endeavor to trace the history of the Faust legend through its 
multiform ramifications down to Goethe's Faust, except that here also 
I emphasize the effect which the various stages of civilization and the 
different ideals of culture, through which this legend has passed, have 
had upon its character. 

2. As to the second question of the Committee's circular, asking 
for a statement of the actual results of my teaching, this is a question 
which it is impossible for me to answer satisfactorily. As far as the 
number of students goes, my courses are natural^ handicapped by 
the fact that, with the exception of Course 4, in which at least a part 
of the work is devoted to German theme writing and the translation 
of difficult passages, the ready use of the German language both in 
reading and for the purpose of taking notes, is presupposed in all 
nry courses. Keeping this in mind, it seems to me that the attend- 
ance in these courses may be called satisfactory. Last year the num- 
bers were as follows : — 

Ger. 4. Ger. 5. Ger. 9. Ger. 11. Ger. Phil. 19. 
68 49 18 14 3 

This year they are : — 

72 45 12 11 5 

The second, *.e., this year's list, includes 10 graduate students. 

It seems to me that in gauging the efficiency of the language 
instruction given in the department, these figures of the distinctly 
literary courses ought to be carefully considered. They certainly 
ought to have as much weight, if not more, as the testimony of other 
departments about the readiness of their students in using the German 

Of palpable results of the instruction in German literature in this 
University, I may mention that during the last four years the Sohier 


prize, a prize to be awarded to the best essay dealing with some phase 
of modern European literature, was twice won by a student in the 
German department; and that this year's volume of the "Studies 
and Notes in Philology and Literature," an official publication of 
Harvard University, contains a doctor thesis on "Expressions of 
German national feeling before Walther von der Vogelweide," by 
one of our graduate students, Professor Carruth of Kansas Uni- 

3. With regard to the third question of the circular, I fully agree 
with all that has been said at our various conferences with the Visit- 
ing Committee in favor of raising the German requirements for ad- 
mission to the University. I would also suggest that the Committee 
recommend the gradual abolition of instruction in elementary German 
at this University. This is a function which properly belongs to the 
secondary schools, and the mere existence of such courses in the 
College must tend to lower the position of the department as a whole 
in the eyes of the college community. In view of the fact that at 
present very little attention is given to German in the schools, a com- 
plete and sudden abolition of these courses in College is, of course, 
out of the question. But I see no reason why they could not even 
now be deprived of their compulsory character. There exists at 
present an elective course in elementary German (Course B) which 
requires more work than the compulsory course (Course .4) ; and 
although it is taken by a very much smaller number of students than 
the latter, I have a strong impression that it is on the whole taken by 
very much better men. 

Finally, I would call the attention of the Committee to the fact that 
the reo-ulations for Honor examinations in Germanic languages have 
recently been changed so as to include a reading knowledge of Latin 
and at least an elementary knowledge of Greek. It seems only rea- 
sonable to expect that the Honor examinations in Greek and Latin 
will accordingly be changed so as to include at least a reading knowl- 
edge of German. 

(Second letter.) Allow me to add one more argument in favor of 
the abolition of prescribed elementary German (Course A) in Harvard 
College, a suggestion of which I made in answer to your circular of 

March 2. 

According to the President's Report for 1892-93, the total number 
of Freshmen in the German department during that year was 2 
Of these, 143 took the prescribed course in elementary German 
(Course A) ; 141 took elective German courses (B, C, la, lb, h'- 
E, F, 2, 3, 4, 6). 


The total number of Sophomores in the German department during 
the same year was 228. Of these, 85 attended courses recruited from 
Course A (la, lb, lc) ; 143 attended courses not recruited from 
Course A (B, O, E, F, G, 2, 3, 4, 6, 5, 9). 

It is clear from this that the vast majority of the students 1 pursuing 
second year's studies in German consisted of men who had not taken 
Course A. 

In the year 1893-94 there were 86 Sophomores in Courses la, lb 
Lc,- the courses recruited from Course A, — a fact showing that 
more than a third, namely 57, of the 143 Freshmen of 1892-93 who 
began German as a prescribed study dropped it in the Sophomore 

The natural inference from these figures seems to be (1) that the 
German department does not need Course A as a source of supply 
for the elective courses offered by the department ; (2) that for a 
considerable proportion of students the work spent on prescribed 
elementary German is a mere waste of time. 

While these reports are calculated to create a favorable impression 
as far as they go, it is to be gathered from many of the opinions ex- 
pressed that, although a certain advance is to be noticed, a greater 
and more general proficiency in German among the students is very 
desirable. As to the question how the deficiencies that may exist 
might be remedied, the answers received in response to our interoga- 
tories differ. They may be divided into the following classes : — 

1. Those recommending that students be admonished by way of 
suggestion and advice, in the official reports and pamphlets as well 
as in personal conversation, to devote more attention to the study of 
the German language. 

2. Those recommending that the requirements as to German in the 
examinations for admission to the University be increased. 

3. Those recommending higher requirements as to German for 
admission to scientific schools, and for honors and degrees ; and 

4. Those recommending special courses for scientific German to be 
connected with the different scientific departments. 

These different recommendations do not necessarily exclude one 
another, as, indeed, they appear grouped together in one or two of 
the answers we have received to our interrogatories. The admonition 

■ ' I.e., a total of 284 (HI Freshmen, 143 Sophomores); against a total of 
85 Sophomores pursuing second year's studies in German, who had taken 
bourse A. 


by su-estion or advice, as well as the establishment of higher re- 
quirements in German for certain honors or degrees, might prove 
IS incentives under any circumstances. But a careful con- 
Jd ation of the whole subject has led us to the conclusion that the 
recommendation of an. increase of the initial requirements deserves 
he most serious attention. The more Harvard rises to the station 
andTlignity of a University in the higher,-that « the true sense - 
be less the institution should have to do with that kind of wo* wh ch 
naturally belongs to the office of the preparatory school. 1 he student 
eft ing Harvard should be required sufficiently to possess what may 
be called the mechanical equipment necessary for the p»-o 
stadt This, applied to the German language, would mean tha the 
Sa^ard stud nt should be beyond the struggle with its struetura 
diffi uWes, that he should be able to read it understanding, withou 
tbfpamfu drudgery of conscious translation word for word and that 
!„ usC H his labor should be reduced to a mere occasional enlarge- 

ttSS it may be very difficult, if not impossible, to reach 
tbiTobjective point all at once. But it may ultimately ^ rea bed by 
^raduS approaches. We venture respectfuiiy to suggest as he « 
step a public announcement that the requirements as to German m 
^'examination for admission, will henceforth be increased by ^ 
grees, and that elementary instruction m German at the University 

W wt e ;": g tst that the time for the examination in German 

belxte'd d to two* hours and that it include, in addition to the trans- 
be extendea g . m k . nfU bnt o( ordinan 

affficX JheTnsUt n of a few sentences of simple English prose 
tfo German or a simple composition in German, and some ordmary 
into dermal , * The examination should certainly be 

^^1^0^ L attainment of a satisfactory resu.t 

^WeTuef; also that the recommendation made by several of the 

JeTof ^ruction concerning the ^^J^S 

• u ^i.ntlfio airman" in connection with the respective &^ 

i: rlervS^e seriously considered «, as.nrces of m = 

tion German works are to be read, it is most important that they s ho 

Tread understanding,. The meaning ; of write, w*™. tu • £» 

authorities should not be merely guessed at. This is one or 

in which "a little knowledge" is more dangerous than none at .*. 

The particular study of scientific terminologies appears spec ^ 

necessary with regard to German writers because, as is wel kno 

not a few of them -whether writing on science, or philosophy 


even history, — take great liberties with their language in construct- 
ing composite words and in various other ways, thus creating, to 
some extent, technical terms, or forms of expression which, when 
applied to certain things, are to convey a special meaning — more or 
less peculiar to themselves. The courses suggested would, therefore, 
serve a useful purpose. 

We would also respectfully recommend that in courses in which 
recitations form part of the system of instruction, the classes be 
divided into sections conveniently small, to contain not above 30 
students, and that the number of instructors be correspondingly 

All of which is respectfully submitted . 




Committee on German. 
4th October, 1894. 


To the Board of Overseers of Harvard University : 

The Visiting Committee on Mathematics, appointed by the Board 
of Overseers of Harvard University, beg to report that they have 
carefully endeavored to ascertain the character and influence of the 
instruction given. 

They have put themselves in communication with the Professors in 
the Department, and have taken what seems to them the best steps 
for informing themselves of the progress of the students. While the 
methods followed at present are evidently efficient, they are neverthe- 
less not such as to lend themselves to easy investigation, since they 
consist chiefly in lectures and commentaries by the instructors, fol- 
lowed by semiannual written examinations of the pupils. 

Your Committee has not evaded labor or trouble, and the Professors 
have manifested readiness and a cordial desire to afford the Committee 
every facility for fulfilling their duties. After much consideration, 
the most practical course which suggested itself to the Committee was 
to ask the teachers for a sufficient number of the books written and 
handed in at the examinations, to permit correct inferences as to the 
attainments and progress of the students. This has accordingly been 
done, and a majority of the members of your Committee have inde- 
pendently and carefully studied a large number of the examination- 
books, furnished by the Professors for the purpose, and comprising, 
as they have assured us, a fair selection from those of the best, the 
average, and the least satisfactory sort. 

In this way your Committee believe that they have acquired a 
correct general idea of the results of the instruction given ; and they 
beg to report that this appears to them to be of high character and 
most creditable to the students in the Department as a whole. In 
several cases the examination-books give evidence of eminent mathe- 
matical ability, warranting high expectation for the future and quite 
comparable with the best results of mathematical teaching in any 
institution with which the members of the Committee are acquainted. 

The need of a department-library, which should contain the most 
important works in various branches of mathematics, for reference 
and consultation, has earnestly been urged by different professors. 
The germ of such a library already exists, but it is only a germ, and 


the need of its increase is great. No better opportunity could be 
desired for any one desirous of promoting the success of mathematical 
teaching in the University by some pecuniary gift within the power of 
persons of moderate means, than is here afforded. Even a hundred 
dollars, annually expended in the purchase of standard mathematical 
works for the use of the department, would probably be of essential 
service in facilitating the work of the teachers. 

For the Committee, 


November, 1894. 



To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : 

The Committee appointed to visit the Medical and Dental Schools 

submit the following report : 

Members of the Committee have visited both of the Schools • have 
attended the exercises ; inspected the laboratories, lecture rooms and 
museums; have talked with the instructors and students, — and in 
general have endeavored to make themselves familiar with the work 
done in those departments of the University which they were appointed 
to visit. 


The Medical School, we are glad to report, continues to enjoy an 
increasing and deserved prosperity. The compulsory four years' 
course went into operation in the autumn of 1892, and there has been 
no reason to regret its adoption. The step was taken without any 
guarantee fund-at one time proposed - and the result has shown 
that none was needed. The entering classes last year and this year 
are the largest in the history of the School. The School at present 
has 454 students. The only embarrassment apparently caused by 
lengthening the course of study is the indaequacy of the accommoda- 
tions m the present building, generally known as the new building 
This building has only been occupied eleven years and more space is 
now required. Steps must before long be taken to enlarge the labora- 
tory facilities of the anatomical, histological, and bacteriological de- 
partments. Hitherto the classes from the Dental and Veterinary 
Schools have attended the exercises of some of these departments 
with the first class of the Medical School. This is no longer possible 
and separate instruction must be given. A new building for labora- 
tory purposes will be required and might be erected on the vacant 
land adjoining the present building. It has also been proposed to 
put another story on the present Sears laboratory building For 
these purposes the. School desires to raise a sum of $100 000 


During the summer a new cold room was built at the School for 
the use of the Anatomical Department, at a cost of more than $3000. 
It has now been in use for some months, and accomplishes most 
satisfactorily the purposes in view. Accommodation is also provided 
for the Pathological Department's material. The air of the interior 
of this room is both cold and dry and electric light furnishes an 
admirable illumination. 

The number of teachers directly or indirectly connected with the 
School is very large and is increasing. Perhaps for this reason they 
have not the same acquaintance with each other as formerly, lo 
bring together all those interested in the work of the School, the 
Faculty have arranged for an evening reception at the beginning of 
the School year in the School building. There are now eighty-eight 
teachers giving instruction in the School. The Faculty have recently 
voted to allow other men who wish to give instruction, but who are 
not connected with the School, to announce their courses in the School 
building. The courses in the Summer School are well attended, and 
are exciting increased attention, as is evidenced by the numerous 
letters of inquiry, many from distant points in the West. 

More scholarships are greatly desired. At present there are three 
fellowships and thirteen scholarships. The competition for these by 
good and deserving men is very keen. 

While convinced that the various departments of the School are on 
a healthy basis and conducted with a view to stimulating activity, 
your Committee permit themselves to say an especial word of com- 
mendation for the work done in the Anatomical Department 

There is still no separate department and no Professor of Thera- 
peutics ; the remarks made iu the last report of your Committee on 
this subject are as applicable now as then. In the division of s udies 
materia medica aud therapeutics are assigned at the end of the list to 
the second year students; they do not appear at all among the 
studies assigned to the other three years. Some instruction in thera- 
peutics is given by the instructor in materia medica and hyg.ene 
His course consists of two exercises each week, the chief part but 
by no means all of which has to do with drugs. His directions from 
the Medical Faculty were to teach the physiological action of remedial 
agents with suck incidental reference to their practical application as 
should be deemed necessary, the main facts as to the latter being left 
to the teachers in the various clinical departments. 

Your Committee have corresponded with all the clinical teachers in 
regard to the kind and amount of instruction in therapeutics given by 
them individually. The tradition exists that they each and all give 


such instruction. Your Committee believe that more effort is made 
to give such instruction than was the case two years ago. As a 
matter of fact, however, your Committee and the students themselves 
must still feel that this instruction is entirely inadequate both in kind 
and in amount. It is the one really weak spot in the teaching at the 
Medical School of the University, and for young men who are to earn 
their living by healing the sick or trying to heal them safely, quickly, 
and agreeably, there is no branch of medical study more important. 

Your Committee will not enter into the question as to whether this 
department should be presided over by a practising physician, or by 
a physiological chemist, but they do not hesitate to reiterate their 
opinion that such a department should be provided for in the School 
and that practically the whole of this essential subject should not be 
left to the good intentions of the clinical teachers. 

A Chair of Therapeutics need in no way interfere with instruction 
in therapeutics by the clinical teachers to whatever extent their time 
may permit and their zeal may urge them. 


The principal change affecting the Dental School has been the 
remodelling, at the expense of the School, of the building occupied 
by it in North Grove St. This is the old Medical School building 
and is loaned to the Dental School by the Medical School. About 
$5000 have been spent on the changes. As a result the Dental 
School now has accommodations which are light, clean, and con- 
venient, whether for operative or laboratory work, and which should 
answer the purposes of the School more satisfactorily for some years 
to come. The situation is not in all ways ideal, but the proximity to 
the Massachusetts Hospital and to a poor population offers counter- 
balancing advantages. 

The School now has a three years' course, with eighty students and 
twenty-eight teachers, without counting those teachers belonging to 
the Medical School who also give instruction to the students in the 
Dental School. 

The last year was a favorable one for the School, which certainly 
deserves the support and encouragement of the community. 

The Committee append a statement from Dr. T. H. Chandler, the 
devoted Dean of the School, received in response to a request for his 
views in regard to its present condition and future needs. Dr. 
Chandler's unselfish interest in the Dental School gives him a just 
claim to your attention : — 


" The alterations in the old building cost a trifle over $5000 ; other 
expenses have been necessitated by these changes, amounting to a 
few hundred dollars, which do not seem to come properly under the 
head of building expenses. 

"Notwithstanding all this cost, which seems to me almost money 
thrown away, we are crowded in the mechanical department, and 
need more room as imperatively as ever. 

" I wish the corporation would come to our aid as they did in Dr. 
Keep's time, when he bought the old building on Allen Street. We 
paid up that debt with interest and could pay up another with proper 
facilities for increasing our numbers. There is no public spirit in 
Boston to help Dental Schools. Other cities build large and spacious 
buildings for such schools by private subscriptions, while here we 
have almost utterly failed so far, and there seems little prospect of 
ultimate success. There is a dense ignorance of what we are doing 
and of what we have done. I dare say this ignorance extends even 
to the gentlemen of your corporation, and that there are but a few 
among them who appreciate our work. 

"This is our overwhelming and absorbing need. 

" The old building is not properly situated, and can never, by any 
amount of money spent upon it, be made fit for our uses. All such 
money is practically wasted. 

' ' Moreover the day is fast coming when we shall not be able to 
get a suitable situation even at a big price, therefore there is the 
more need of haste. 

" I write all this from a full heart, and hope it will not be thought 

March, 1895. 



To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College • 

In the last report of the Committee on Composition and Rhetoric, 

submrtted now three years ago, attention was called to the singular 

and most unhappy divergence found to exist between theory and 

practice in one most important branch of educatiou preparatory for 
College So far as writing the mother tongue is concerned, -a 

lung all admit not to be wholly disregarded iu what is known as 
the higher education, -the theory, elaborately expounded aud gen- 
erally accepted as au established article iu orthodox educational 
faith, long has been that the proper way to learn to write Euglish 
is to translate orally Greek and Latin. Iu this way, it is argued 
and, if not aloue in this way, yet indisputably better in this than in any 
other way, can command of a vocabulary, flexibility, and knowledo-e 
of construction, in short a terse elegance of pure English expression 
be acquired. And, accordingly, it is found on examination that the 
programmes of the better class of preparatory schools set forth that 
m these institutions, in all cases of translating Greek or Latin into 
English, a "free, original and idiomatic rendering" is insisted upon 

Discouraged at what seemed the lamentably low average of the 
knghsh exercises submitted to them as the work of the younger col 
lege classes, the members of the Committee, iu preparing their report 
of three years ago, turned to the examination books in which Greek 
and Latin were rendered into the native speech. They hoped to find 
m them extracts from the classic masterpieces reproduced in that 

free, original and idiomatic rendering" upon which the programmes 

Xir inl^ T ^ PrMe " We " - ^ *~»* * «» Oratory 

distinct!^ ^ thdr T™ 68 WaS ^ iMpiritin §'- Indeed * ™ s° 
distinctly the reverse of inspiriting that the Committee, in place of 

merely stating their conclusions, which would natural,; have bee. 

challenged on the ground of exaggeration, took the mmsua, course o 

Emitting as part of their report a large body of evidence in the 

form of original examination papers, as well as compositions, all 


printed literatim, punctuation et verbatim, and a large part of them 
reproduced in fac- simile. 

Those papers spoke for themselves ; discreditable to the young- 
men, averaging nineteen years of age, who prepared them, they re- 
vealed a condition of affairs, combined with methods of instruction 
in the preparatory schools, the reverse of satisfactory. Nor was the 
state of affairs thus revealed denied. On the contrary, commenting 
upon that 1893 report, Prof. W. W. Goodwin, 1 speaking with indis- 
putable authority, remarked: "Many good people who read the 
Committee's report will believe that our mother tongue is singled out 
for neglect and contempt by the preparatory schools ; and some will 
think that the neglect of English is justified by the high standard of 
scholarship in Latin, Greek, and Mathematics which (as they sup- 
pose) the college exacts of its candidates for admission. Nothing 
can be farther from the truth than both of these ideas. ... A 
similar test applied to any other department would disclose a state of 
things in the lower ranks of scholarship which would be proportionally 
disreputable. ... It cannot be doubted that a similar depth of 
ignorance of Geometry, Algebra, Physics, or History might easily 
be disclosed." 

The Committee on Composition and Rhetoric has, of course, 
nothing to do with the Departments of Geometry, Algebra, Physics, 
or History ; but, assuming that the condition of affairs in those de- 
partments, so far as our preparatory education is concerned, is as 
described by Professor Goodwin, and further that neither the College 
nor the preparatory schools themselves, but the entity conveniently 
known as "the system" is responsible therefor, the question naturally 
presents itself whether anything, and, if anything, what can be done 
to remedy such a condition of affairs. 

That the condition of affairs, so far as the written rendering of 
Greek and Latin into English is concerned, should admit from any 
quarter of aggressive, or even earnest defence, would seem in face of 
the evidence, most improbable. It has, indeed, been suggested, in a 
somewhat deprecatory spirit, that things may not be quite so bad as 
the examination papers would seem to indicate ; inasmuch as, when 
the scholars who wrote those papers sat down to express themselves 
for ordinary purposes of life, it would be found that they naturally 
threw off the evil influences of their training, and, it might even per- 
haps be hoped, would express themselves nearly as well as they 
would have done had they not been subjected to that training. In 

1 Prof. W. W. Goodwin in Harvard Graduates' Magazine, January, 1892 
(vol. I) p. 190. 


other words the examination papers so far fl « «, a i • 

issue, seems to obseT It ^^^ rt ??£» h ** 
mental principle, that every senten e cZ 1S ts oTa sfh " /^^ 
dicate, and that clearness in the ^ZjLjT^"^^ 
essence of good writing. Beyond S^X -cfu ion ^ 
not to your Committee seem necessarv «t ™ * ™ nclusi0n jt d °es 
again addnce in this, as in thTEr ~ £" ? ^ 
evince showing that the conclusion has not been Sed J^f 
visedly. The following are some of th P V T lmad - 

Advanced Latin **■»« « a dTll? II S7£ ^ b" 

entrance examination. 

No. 1 

we watched over with /^^^ "*"*' 
chief command, but by Wee bvYbT my 6Ven without a 

but she now is so harassed it I T Uame ° f the R ° man P 80 ^; 

hardly can reca^^^^T^ P ° Wer ^ "^ ^ ^ 
heard this, who does no TnL 7 ?^ T S ^^ Nay who has «* 
great fortune to bfttl who, ff • b 7 ^ T^ ^"^ t0 W a 
chines were turned over to th, customs of the Dyrra- 

of the Byzantinerlst LaM tn PerV T D , 0f ^ °" man ' * at th * <% 
after the'fasion of ^ my how IZT T ^ ^ **» h ~* 
«.e poverty-stricken S^J^^T^J^ <* * 
wretched sent his cohorts into winteLnartZ -n 7 7" £r ° m the 
whom he thought would be moTf a 1 ? 7 •' PlaCed ° Ter them m ™ 
of his cupidity ° St d ' llgent Satelltes of his ^mes, ministers 

-2xs; Ss lo x:n- he prov r wh ° makes «-*•* ^ 

himself to be mofetan hT 00, ^^ 0MzenS ' Wh ° e ™ «**» 

tended to be less than he was able ZT Z '" nCTer P re - 

U»t he has accomplished ma short f T^ * some wa ^ «*>asts 

bought the most able of all **' "* PiS ° aI ° ne shmM "c 

[7%e «6 |; e WQ!( 5 mar k e( z C—.~\ 


No. 2. 

The lines rush together with equal leaders and with equal strength, 
the last lines press close together till neither arms nor forces allow the 
crown to be moved. Here Pallas stands and exhorts there and Lusus 
there opposed nor much has age diminished from his splendid form but 
any return to country fortune denies him. Nor does the ruler of great 
Olympus allow these feet to rush together among themselves, soon their 
fate threatens at the hands of a greater enemy. 

In the meanwhile his noble sister advises Turnus to succumb to Lauso 
who cuts the middle rank with swift chariot. Thus speaks he when he 
sees the allies. ' Time is to disist from fight, alone I am brought against 
Pallas Pallas alone has a debt with me, I wish his father might be here to 
view the fight,' then the allies desist at the just command. But the youth 
wondered at Rutulus in his fall and now at the haughty order he stands 
stunned by Turnus and casts his eyes over that great body and he runs 
afar from all sight of slaughter, and with such words goes against the 
tyrannic order. ' Either with rich spoils already snatched I will be 
honored or with the habiliments of death. My father is content with 
either lot. Bring on your threats. 1 Having spoken he plunged into the 
water. His blood with the cold Arcadis enters his heart. Turnus leaped 
from this chariot the 

[The above was marked C] 

No. 3. 

And this Macedonia, neighboring nations now having been overcome 
and the barbarian (race) having been repulsed, peaceful and quiet through 
its own efforts, this Macedonia we were wont to see held with a garrison 
and very small band by lieutenants even with the imperium by the very 
name of the Roman people. Now it is so harassed by the Consular com- 
mand and army, that it is scarcely able during a long continued peace to 
reestablish itself ; while in the mean time, who of you has not heard this, 
who knows it not, that the Achaens yearly pay to Lucius Piso an enormous 
tax, that all the tribute and harbor duties of the Dyrrachians is turned into 
the treasury of this one man, that the city of the Bysantines to you and to 
this government most faithful, has been harassed into an unfriendly mood ? 
Wherefore this (villian) after he was unable to squeeze anything more 
from the paupers ; or by any force wrest anything from the unhappy 
creatures sent his cohorts into winter quarters ; over them he placed those 
whom he thought would be most thorough participates in his crimes and 
ministers to his desires. 

[The above was marked C] 


No. 4. 

To you, indeed, conscript fathers, I have given thanks individually and 
will give (hanks. In the beginning I gave thanks to all collectively 
(universis) as much as 1 was able; in no way can I appropriately return 

And although I have in mind the especial favors of many, which favors 
can in no way be passed over in silence, yet it is not proper at this time 
and in my state of anxiety to recount the kindnesses of single individuals 
towards me ; for it is difficult not to pass by any one who has done me 
harm. 1 ought to cherish you all, conscript fathers, in the number of the 

But just as we are wont not always to reverence and beseech among the 
immortal gods the same divinity, but some one others another so among 
the men who truly have placed me under a debt of gratitude, all my life 
will be spent in heralding and reviving the benefits of those men to me. 
[The above ivas marked A.~] 

No. 5. 

What more glorious legacy could I leave to my descendants than this, 
that the senate decided that that citizen who had not defended me, was 
unwilling for the republic to be safe ? And so your authority, so power- 
ful, and the great reputation of the consul were of such avail that if any 
one did not come he thought he was committing some wrong and disgrace- 
ful act. And that same consul when that incredible multitude, almost all 
Italy, had come to Rome, called you together to meet in a body at the 

At that time you were able to realize how much strength natural worth 
and true nobility had ; for Quintus Metellus, an enemy and brother of an 
enemy, perceiving your feeling in the matter layed aside all private hates. 

But for you, conscript fathers, I have done and I shall do great kindnesses. 
I have done for you all from the first as much as I could. And although 
there are especial favors shown me by many which can on no account be 
unrecognized, yet at this time of fear I must not attempt to mention the 
favors of individuals towards me, for it is difficult not to pass over some 
one, wrong to pass over any one. I ought to cherish you all. conscript 
fathers, among the number of my gods. But as among the gods them- 
selves we are not accustomed always to worship and pray to the same 
ones, but worship some at one time, some at another, so for me among 
the men deserving divine gratitude from me, there shall be my whole life 
in which to acknowledge and cherish their favors towards me. 
[The above was marked C + .] 


No. 6. 

Behold however the bull smoking under the hard ploughshare fell and 
threw out from his mouth blood mixed with froth and stifled his last 
groans. The sodden yeoman departs unyoking the bullock sorrowing at 
his brother's death, and leaves his implements fixed in the midst of his 
work. ISTor the shades of the lowering groves, nor the soft fields can 
move his mind nor the which flying over the rocks seeks the 

field by the streamlet * (but his sides are shaken with sobs) and stupor 
presses upon his fixed eyes, and his neck by the bending weight looks 
toward the earth. 

To meet him, attended by the battle line of the Volsci, ran Camilla the 
queen and alighted from her horse under the very gates, the queen whom 
imitating the whole cohort jumped to the ground, leaving their horses. 
Then thus she speaks "O Turnus, if there is any confidence in a man 
brave and deserving of himself, I dare and promise, alone to rush against 
the followers of Aeneas and to go against the Tyrrenian horseman. Per- 
mit me to try the first dangers of the battle with my band. You, a foot- 
soldier stand at the walls and guard the fortifications. 11 To these things 
Turnus responded fixing his eyes upon the frenzied queen. " O maiden 
glory of Italy What thanks shall I prepare to speak or what thanks to 
return? But now that spirit of yours by far surpasses all things, that 
desire of yours to share my labor. 

* but the depths of his sides are loosended. 
[The above was marked B + .] 

No. 7. 

What more glorious thing am I able to leave to my posterity than this, 
that the senate has decreed that whatever citizen does not defend me does 
not wish the republic to be safe. And so your authority was of so great 
weight and the great dignity of the consul has availed much that he would 
think that he himself was committing mispropriety and crime if no one 
should. And likewise the consul, when that incredible number had come 
to Rome nearly Italy herself, summoned you in great crowds into the capitol. 
At which time you were able to understand how much might the goodness 
of nature and true nobility has ; for Quintus Metellus, both and enemy 
himself and the brother of an enemy, at your wish, laid aside all his clearly 
seen private hatred. 

To you indeed, Oh Conscript Fathers, individually I both have given and 
shall give thanks. Collectively, I gave you as much as I was able in the 
beginning. I am in no way able to give them sufficiently elaborately. 
And although there are the particular good deeds of many toward me, 
which can in no way be kept silent, yet my time and my fear do not allow 
me to try to relate the benefits of individuals toward me, for it is not difli- 


cult to pass by some-one it is not right to pass by any one. T ouffht to 
cultivate you collectively Oh Conscript Fathers, among the number of the 
gods But as in the case of the immortals gods themselves, we are accus- 
tomed to venerate and to pray to not always the same ones, but sometimes 
to one sometimes to another, so among deserving men every age will be 
divine for me for proclaiming and cultivating their good deeds on my 
account. J 

[The above was marked C — .] 

No. 8. 

And this Macedonia, which was (itself) peaceful and at rest by itself 
when at last the neighboring tribes were subdued and their fierceness 
checked & held with a guard, and, even without (a commander's authority 
and we were defending with a small force, by means of the lieutenants 
merely m the name of the Roman people; which now under the consuls' 
rule and army is so harassed it can hardly recover (itself) under a Ion* 
continued peace ; since meanwhile who of has not heard this, who is ignor- 
ant, that the Greeks pay yearly a large sum of money to Lucius Pisorthat 
the whole tribute and customs of the Dyrrachinians is to the de- 

mands of this one man. that the city of the Byzantians, most faithful to 
you and this empire has been wrought into a hostile state of feeling? So 
he after he was became unable to extract anything from these & needy 
people, or extort by any force anything from these wretches, he sent his 
cohorts into winter quarters. He placed ever them those whom he thought 
would be most zealous abettors of crimes, ministers to their own avaricious- 


Keep therefore longer in the province him who obtains treuces (or 
agreements) by the allies with (our) enemies, and by the citizens with 
allies, who even thinks he is better than his colleague in this that he (the 
colleague) has deceaved you with his sadness and countenance, while he 
himself had never pretended to be less than he was. Piso however in a 
certain other way one boasted that in a /short time he had brought it about 
that Gabenius alone of them all should not be thought (to be) the most 
good-for-nothing (?) 

[The above was marked C] 

No. 9. 

The battle lines rush together, both equal in respect to leaders and 
strength. The ends of the lines thicken nor does the thron* allow the 
weapons and arms to be moved. Here Pallas presses on and cheers on, 
here Lausus against him nor do their years differ much, illustrous in form, 
but to whom Fortune denied a return to their native land. The ruler of 
great Olympus did not suffer them nevertheless to rush together by them- 
selves ; soon their fates await them under a greater foe. In the meanwhile 


the kind Sister advised Turnus to follow Lausus, who was cutting the 
midst of the battle line with his flying chariot. As he saw his companions, 
" It is time to cease from fighting, I alone am going against Pallas, Pallas 
belongs to me alone ; I wish the father himself were present as a witness."" 
This he said and the companions withdrew from the plain at his command. 
But at the giving way of the 

[The above was marked C — ] 

No. 10. 

Also this Macedonia as the tribes are subdued and the barbarism sup- 
pressed are guarded in a state of peace and quiet through its own efforts, 
with a slight guard and a small band even without the power of the 
legates in the name of the Roman people, but now it is so harassed by the 
consular power and the army that it is scarcely able reestablish itself in a 
lengthy peace. 

Who of us has not heard of this ? who is ignorant that the Achaeans are 
paying a great sum of money to L. Piso yearly, that the tax and entire 

port dues of Dyrrachini are turned into the of this one man, that 

the city of the Byzantines most faithful to you and this power is harassed 
in a hostile maimer. On account of which he, after he was not able to 
squeeze out anything from the needy people sent the cohortes into camp. 
Over them he placed those whom he thought most diligent assistants in his 
crimes and ministers of his deeds of avarice. 

Retain him therefore longer in the province who makes treaties for the 
allies with their enemies and for the citizens with their allies although he 
thinks that on this account he is of greater value than his colleague because 
he decieved you by the sadness of his countenance he pretends that he Mas 

But Piso congratulated himself that he accomplished it in a short time 

that Gabienus alone should not be thought of all. 

[The above was marked C — .] 

No. 11. 

The lines meet, one as strong as the other, and with well-matched 
leaders. The ends of the lines grow thick with men and the jam prevents 
the rise of hands and weapons. Here Pallas starts forth and encourages 
these, on the opposite side Lausus does likewise ; there is no great differ- 
ence in their ages and their beauty is great, but Fortune may not let them 
return to their country. Yet the ruler of great Olympus does not allow 
them to meet and presently their fates leave them to the power of the 
stronger enemy. 

Meanwhile Turnus's fostering sister warns him to yield to Lausus as 
Turnus cuts through the midst of the line in his swift chariot. "When he 
saw his allies, he said, " It is time to cease from battle ; I alone am borne 
against Pallas, to me alone Pallas belongs ; (lit. is due) I would desire 


Unit oven his father be present as a witness. ,: When he said this, his 
companions eeased fighting. With the following words he opposes the 
command of the tyrant. « « For my part, I will be praised either for the 
best spoils taken or for a glorius death : the father is favorable to each lot. 
Strike.' 11 Having spoken he went into the middle of the field. The cold 
blood froze in the veins of the Arcadians. Tnrnus leaped from the chariot. 
[The above was marked C] 

No. 12. 

What more splendid thing have I been able to leave to my descendants 
than this fact : that the senate has considered that he who, as a citizen, 
had not defended me, was against the safety of the republic? And so, 
such has been the power of your authority and so effective has been the 
least display of the consul's majesty, that he who did not come, considered 
that he acted basely and infamously. So too, the consul, when that 
enormous multitude, and almost Italy herself, had come to Rome called 
together a large number of you at the Capitol ; and upon that occasion 
you could see what power there is in integrity of character and in true 
nobility ; for Quintus Metellus, both an enemy and an enemy's brother, 
laid aside all private dislikes when he understood your wish. 

Indeed, conscript fathers, I have thanked you separately and I shall do 
so again. In the beginning I thanked you all as much as I could ; but I 
can in no way do it gracefully enough. And although I have especial 
gifts which are deserving of much, yet this occasion and my own fear do 
not permit me to recount the benefits which I have received at the hands of 
individuals ; for it is difficult not to pass over some one and wrong to leave 
out any one. Senators, I ought to cherish you all among the number of 
the gods. But, as in the case of the immortal gods, we are not used to 
always venerate and worship the same ones, — but are accustomed to pray 
to different ones, so too as regards men, I shall devote my whole life, 
received from those who deserve divinity from me, to setting forth and 
extolling their deeds which have deserved well at my hands. 
[The above was marked C + .] 

No. 13. 

Then lo, the bull, foaming around his fierce mouth falls and belches 
forth gore mixed with froth and utters his last groans. The sad plough- 
man departs, leading away the bullock, which is mourning for the death 
of his brother, and leaves behind the plough, where he had just ceased 
working. Neither the shadows of the lofty groves nor the soft meadows 
can soothe his mind nor the rivulet which flowing over the rocks, clearer 
than amber, runs toward the plain ; but his lowest limbs become stiff, 
faintness overpowers his lifeless eyes and his neck when its support was 
gone, glided to the ground. 


Camilla accompanied by a large crows of Volscians, went to meet him ; 
at the gates the queen dismounted and her companions imitating this action 
left their horses and leaped to the ground. Then the queen speaks : O 
Turnus, if you have confidence in one, who deserves it and is brave, I dare 
and promise to attack the columns of the followers of Aeneas and alone 
shall go to meet the Tyrrhenian Knights. Let me attempt the opening 
skirmish of the battle without army, but do you place your men around 
the walls and protect the city. Turnus with fixed eyes looked at the vir- 
gin, bristling in her armor, and replied to these words : O Virgin, glory 
of Italy, what thanks shall I utter, how can I prepare to repay your kind- 
ness ? Yet now, since my mind is above all these things, let me share 
this combat with you. 

[The above was marked B.~\ 

No. 14. 

Behold ! a bull foaming under his hard jaws, fell and belched forth from 
his mouth blood mixed with foam, and uttered his dying groans. The 
sad ploughman went with his brothers death, the grieving bullock, and 
he leaves the plough stuck in the ground in the midst of his work. Not 
the shades of the lofty groves, nor the soft (prata) can alter his mind, nor 
any river purer than (electro) which flying amongst the rocks seeks the 
fields ; but the deep sides are broken, and a stupor comes over his motion- 
less eyes, the neck falls to earth with a ponderous weight. 

To meet him Camilla the queen rushed forward accompanied by a crowd 
of Volsci, and leaped before the gates themselves from her horse. The 
whole cohort imitated her, left their horses and jumped to the ground ; 
then she spoke as follows ; "Turnus, whatever faith in himself there may 
be in a brave deserving man, I dare and I promise to meet the charge of 
the companions of Aeneas, and to go alone against the Tyrrhenian knights, 
and first to try the dangers of war without the band. Do you turn your 
footsteps toward the walls, and protect the battlements. At these words 
Turnus, fixing his eyes on the dread maiden said "Oh virgin pride of 
Italy, what thanks can I prepare to give you? But now your soul is 
above all else, to share my labor with me. 

[The above was marked A.~\ 

No. 15. 

And this Macedonia, the neigboring^ races having been already subdued 
and barbarism restrained, we used to protect by a slight guard and a 
scanty band, even without chief military command (imperium) through 
lieutenants and by the name of the Roman people itself ; this now is so 
harassed by consular command, and by an army, that it could hardly 
refresh itself by a long peace ; since, meanwhile, which of you has not 
heard this, who does not know, that the Achaeans pay a great sum of 


money yearly to L. Piso, that the whole tribute and port dues of the 
Dyrrachians is turned into his single private purse, that the eity of the 
Byzantines, to you and to this empire very faithful, is harassed in a hostile 
manner? Thither he, after he eould squeeze out nothing from the needy, 
wrench out nothing by any force from the wretched, sent his cohorts unto 
winter quarters ; he appointed those, whom he thought the industrious 
tools of his vices, as the instruments of his avarice. 

Keep him, therefore, longer in the province, he who made arrangements 
with the enemy about the allies, and with the allies about citizens, who 
even thought himself worth more than his colleague in this, that his col- 
league deceived you by the sadness of his countenance, he himself never 
pretended to be more worthless than he was. But Piso boasted in a certain 
other way that in a short time he had brought it about that Gabienus should 
not be thought the one the most worthless of all. 

[The above was marked B.~\ 

No. 16. 

And we were guarding this Macedonia, the neighboring tribes having 
been overcome and the barbarians driven back, itself pacified by its own 
act, and quiet, with a slender guard and a scanty band, even without 
(direct) command, through deputies by the very name of the Roman peo- 
ple ; this has now been so harassed by the consular command and the 
army, that it could scarcely recover in eternal peace ; then who has not 
heard, who does not know, that the Achaeans pay an immense sum of 
money to L. Piso every year, that the tax and the whole of the imposts of 
Dyrrachium have accrued for his benefit alone, that the city of Byzantium, 
very faithful to you and to this empire, has been harassed in a hostile 
manner ? from which (city) he, after he was able to extract nothing from 
its poor (citizens) to squeeze out nothing by force from its wretched (in- 
habitants) sent his cohorts into winter quarters ; he placed those over these 
(people) whom he thought would be the most diligent connivers of his 
crimes, (and) servants of his desires. 

Retain him therefore in this province, that he may make compacts con- 
cerning (our) allies with the enemy. 

[The above was marked C] 

It will be observed that all of the above papers were pronounced 
satisfactory so far as the admission of the candidate to College was 
concerned. The showing would be much worse had a due proportion 
of the papers of those who failed to pass the examination been in- 
cluded. As it is, the papers differ in no essential respect from those 
given in the previous (1893) report of this Committee, or from those 
subsequently printed in the Harvard Graduates' Magazine for Jan- 
uary, 1893. The same inferences must be drawn from them. As 


stated by Professor Goodwin these inferences point to " a state of 
things in the lower ranks of scholarship" which is "-disreputable," 
and a "depth of ignorance and carelessness," so far as elementary 
English is concerned, which is "one of the many results of the de- 
plorable condition of our lower education, for which neither the Col- 
lege nor the preparatory schools are directly responsible, though the 
consequences and disgrace fell largely upon both." Professor Good- 
win further adds : ' ' There is no conceivable justification for using 
the revenues of Harvard College, or the time and strength of her 
instructors, in the vain attempt to enlighten the Egyptian darkness 
in which no small portion of our undergraduates are sitting. The 
College must do something to redeem herself from disgrace, and to 
put the disgrace where it belongs ; but she must no longer spend 
time, strength and money on the hopeless task which she has recently 

These it will be noticed are the conclusions of a Professor, and a 
very eminent Professor, of the College. Expressed with a directness 
of language which your Committee would hardly have ventured to 
use, they set forth with clearness an inside view of the situation. 
The paper from which these extracts have been taken appeared over 
two years ago, immediately after the report of this Committee was 
published. If in consequence of that report, or of Professor Good- 
win's paper upon it, any steps in the direction of a reform of the 
" system" have been taken, they have not reached the ears of your 
Committee, nor are the results thereof conspicuously apparent in the 
examination papers since submitted. 

While such a very unsatisfactory condition of affairs is seen to 
exist in the primary education, it seems scarcely profitable for the 
Committee to pursue its investigations further and into the more 
advanced departments. When, again to quote from Professor Good- 
win, "the underpinning on which we propose to build our higher 
education is weak and unsteady," — when on the highest authority 
this is admitted to be the case, it appears to the members of your 
Committee that the best possible service they can render is to call 
repeated attention to the facts until adequate measures of reform are 
initiated and their results become apparent. 

Those measures of reform are not for this Committee to indicate. 
The members of the Committee are not specialists in educational 
matters, nor do they profess to be familiar with results produced in 
other countries and through different methods. If also, as Professor 
Goodwin asserts, the difficulty in the present case is one for which 
neither the College nor the preparatory schools are responsible, but 


is inherent in "the system," it is apparent that the work of reform 
will prove a considerable one. None the less it is also apparent that 
the College is now wasting its time, strength and resources in an im- 
possible attempt " to enlighten Egyptian darkness," and this state of 
affairs at least should not be allowed to continue. That it may not 
continue it must be shown that it continues to exist ; even though 
evidence of the fact, to be conclusive, may involve, as in the present 
case, a wearisome reiteration. 

This report is general in character. The Committee has not given 
and, indeed, does not know the names of any of the students whose 
papers have been published, or those of the schools at which they 
were prepared. In their next report, however, the Committee may 
not improbably pursue another course. With a view to presenting 
the evil in a different light and keeping attention fixed upon it from 
varied points of view, it may then be thought best to publish the 
papers of all the candidates presenting themselves for admission to 
College from some one or two particular schools or academies, — the 
Boston Latin School, for instance, and Mr. Noble's ; or Messrs. 
Browne & Nichols, and the Roxbury Latin, — thus at once bringing 
into contrast the methods pursued and results achieved in those 
schools, and showing the degree, if any, of improvement brought 
about in collegiate preparatory institutions of the higher class. 

Having this possible action in view, and in order that their purpose 
may be generally understood, the Committee would recommend that 
a sufficient number of copies of this report be printed for the use not 
only of the governing boards of the College, but also for that of the 
instructors in the leading preparatory schools. 

All of which is respectfully submitted. 


April, 1895. 



To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : 

In its report presented January, 1893, the Committee to visit the 
Museum of Comparative Zoology stated certain definite and urgent 
needs of the Museum, which, it regrets to say, are essentially the 
same now as then. It has not been possible to provide any of the 
large sums needed for the development of the Museum or for the 
requirements of teaching. 

The needs with which we have to deal, and which were given in 
detail in our last report, are first, on the part of the Museum, more 
space for collections for work and for teaching ; more assistants for 
the care of the specimens ; a systematic collection of fossils from 
our Western States and Territories ; an aquarium and vivarium ; a 
marine zoological laboratory ; and secondly, on the part of the 
University, more teachers. 

The scientific work done at the Museum, like its publications, has 
added to the fame of the University, but the drudgery of elementary 
teaching presses so hard as to prevent much original research that 
might otherwise be done and to hinder direction of the higher work 
of advanced students. 

The two years since our last report, like the previous years of the 
Museum's existence, have been of great activity, in spite of the diffi- 
culties in the way, with a vast amount of original work, including 
costly and valuable publications, for which we are, as always, deeply 
in debt to the generosity of the Curator, upon which we have de- 
pended too much. 

The long illness of Dr. Hagen, which lasted more than three years, 
ended in his death, November, 1893. He had devoted twenty-three 
years of his active life to the service of the Museum, had published 
many papers, and had built up an invaluable collection for his de- 
partment. His presence and his extensive information will be sadly 
missed in the laboratory where he labored so long. 




To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : 

Your Committee on Fine Arts herewith make their report. It 
seems to us that for many reasons this Department to-day deserves 
your particular attention. Interest in the Fine Arts has greatly in- 
creased among us for the last few years. Where but few of our 
young men used to follow artistic pursuits, now they are adopted by 
large numbers. For instance, on last Thanksgiving Day fifty-six 
American students of architecture sat down to dinner together in 
Paris. This year about twenty-five Americans applied in Paris for 
entrance to the architectural course of the Ecole des Beaux Arts ; 
and nobody knows how many American painters there are now in 
that city. To the general advance that these examples indicate, a 
great university should not only contribute recruits prepared to hold 
their own with less favored men, but it should also lead in those 
matters which help to make the nation at large appreciate both good 
results and right intention, and which make them also critical of bad 
artistic work. Such a duty to-day and here is important. Does 
Harvard furnish her share of these recruits and is she doing her part 
in the placing of a high standard before the country ? 

Mr. Norton's lectures have been continued this year, as usual, but 
the numbers in attendance have been greatly increased and the lec- 
tures in consequence have been held in the Sanders Theatre. The 
course interests a large number of students. Many of them diligently 
take notes, and from the notes that we have read, it is plain that an 
important subject is treated in a most interesting way. The lecturer 
discusses not only the history but the philosophy of art, and his side 
remarks which are received with attention by all the class, cover sub- 
jects of current interest and criticism of contemporary work. 

We regret that these most conspicuous lectures on art at Harvard 
are not animated with greater hope for the future of art in this 
country, but they are stimulating and important factors in the Col- 
lege work. 

It seems to us that the class is far too large. Not only is it diffi- 
cult for those seated at a distance to hear, but the course passes with 


the students as a "soft snap," and if we could judge from the 
appearance of the lecture room, perhaps one-third of the young men 
elect it as such. That proportion, it seemed to us in the class room, 
were engaged in reading books or newspapers or were in repose. It 
may be argued that if a soft course is necessary somewhere perhaps 
it is well to select that on Fine Arts, because whatever influence it 
does exert on the idle will be civilizing and beneficial. From no 
other point of view, however, should there be anything soft about a 
course on Fine Arts over one treating say of history or political 
economy. Our observation is that the idle gain next to nothing from 
the more solid information imparted by the lecturer, but catch at his 
marked and individual views on current topics. These they seize 
upon and repeat without attaching to them the solid reasons which 
have seemed so important to the lecturer. This half information can 
do them no serious good, and, more than this, the possibility that a 
large part of the class may be idle and inattentive in the class room 
engenders the pernicious idea that the study of Fine Arts is hardly 
serious and that it is suited to idle dilletanti, a view with which we 
cannot sympathize. It would seem to us that the popularity of this 
study, as testified by the great size of the classes, would warrant the 
Government in increasing the teaching staff of this Department, with 
a view to dividing the students into more manageable sections. It 
is self-evident that the instructor himself cannot do justice to four 
or five hundred examination books. 

It seems to your Committee that the students should have placed 
before them in connection with these lectures photographs or other 
available material, that the visual image shall thus be presented to 
the student rather than an intellectual description of the object under 
discussion. This, we are sure, would be the opinion of all artists. 

Mr. Moore's courses continue to constantly growing classes. He 
gains in influence and power as years pass. His lectures review the 
history of art at close range. They are accompanied by exercises in 
drawing, which render the young man observant and give him a good 
knowledge of shades and shadows and form in what seems to us a 
very proper manner for a University course. We have sometimes 
wished that to this rigid course of observation could be added a 
course in rapid sketching or in delineation pure and simple. It is 
true that University education, perhaps, should not extend to such 
practical application of art. While the University teaches the theory 
of music, it does not teach the use of any musical instrument. While 
it teaches literature, it does not teach handwriting. So while it teaches 
art, it need not be expected to teach drawing. We may grant this 


and say it should be taught in the schools. But it is not so taught and 
the scientific man, the doctor, the professor and the artist is sent away 
from College regretting his inability to draw, when it is nearly as 
necessary to him as writing. When our graduates enter the Institute 
of Technology as architectural students, they are from this lack 
unable, except by a special adjustment of their course, to keep up 
with men who have been there but a single year. We make no sug- 
gestion of a new University course in this respect, but it seems to us 
that among the courses in the architectural department one might 
readily be formed in sketching and the simple drawing of objects, 
which if open to undergraduates of the College would fill a need ; or 
again an evening atelier, like those in Paris, for drawing under the 
guidance of an artist from the cast or later from the life, might be 
welcomed at Cambridge as it is in all large communities. 

A visit to the Architectural Department gives to us an impression 
of life and activity. This course has now been in existence two 
years. It has an admirable corps of instructors and is prepared for 
the best work. The teachers were told early in the year to drop any 
students who by idleness or otherwise would embarrass the school. 
They, however, chose to admonish the backward, and the results 
seem to justify their course. About thirty pupils are now at work 
and the results of these first two years are most encouraging. It is 
to be noted, however, that among the regular students is not a single 
Harvard graduate, and yet they are the men who ought to fill the 
school. We want to have the eyes of undergraduates turned towards 
these courses and towards art as a profession while they are in 

Mr. Chaplin, the late Dean of the Scientific School, was the first 
to urge the establishment of this course, arguing that the appoint- 
ment of an architectural professor would be the only addition to 
existing University facilities needed. He urged that it should be 
treated less as a culture study than as ending in something by 
which a man might earn his bread. Then Mr. Shaler, on becoming- 
Dean, urged its establishment, and at one time desired it to be a 
school to graduate building superintendents. The President of the 
University has always, however, wished to have architecture taught at 
Cambridge as a Fine Art, and in a way to suitably lead to a Bachelor 
of Arts degree, and that its treatment should be allied with that in 
the Classics, Comparative Literature, Philology, and Aesthetics. To 
the great satisfaction of your Committee this is the kind of school 
that the new teachers are developing. They write that they hope to 
make it characteristic of their department "that architecture shall be 


treated as essentially a fine art " ; that they " wish to avoid in every 
way the conception that architecture is a science with a little art 
superadded." They have laid out their course with an " aim to give 
the students such a knowledge of the history of architecture and of 
the growth and meaning of architectural forms, as may enable them 
ultimately to use precedent not blindly but intelligently and with some 
freedom." And varying from the traditional methods of the £cole 
des Beaux Arts, they intend "that the problems given out shall 
depend upon present American conditions and not be merely conven- 
tional school problems without any basis in the soil, as it were." 
They hope, too, that ultimately the majority of students in the course 
may be drawn from the ranks of college graduates, especially from 

It is gratifying to learn of the number of pupils that have already 
joined the school. Mere numbers, however, seem of slight import- 
ance compared with making a proper start. They may be a drag and 
a hindrance. We suggest that it is absurd to impose on the present 
corps of instructors the teaching of rudimentary drawing. We urge 
strenuously that ability to draw objects easily be an absolute require- 
ment for entrance to the course. We also urge that in the next Col- 
lege Catalogue an invitation be inserted for those students in the 
College, who have thought of becoming architects, to seek advice as 
to their courses from the instructors in architecture. This would be 
in addition to similar invitations printed this year on page 216 of the 

To some it seemed an error to ally a school of art with one of 

science. On the establishment of the architectural courses the Amer- 

lean Architect said in an appreciative editorial : — 

How far Harvard University is justified in establishing an architectural 
department can only be proved by lapse of time, and it is open to doubt 
whether this department has been established because there was felt to be 
a need or because the authorities, in pursuing their policy of rounding out 
their field of operations and justifying the rather modern name of their 
institution, felt that it would be a good thing to incorporate such a depart- 
ment with their other branches of instruction. If the new department was 
to be made at Harvard at all, we are disposed to regret that the depart- 
ment was made an adjunct of the Lawrence Scientific School and was not 
frankly added to the courses in the College proper, where in some ways it 
more legitimately belongs, or, rather, where there would be a better 
chance for its growth in the one needed direction, that of architecture as 
an art pure and simple. There are enough architectural departments now 
doing: excellent work as attachments to scientific schools — we believe that 


every one of the older sehools is attached to the scientific side and not to 
the side of arts and letters, so that graduates can only receive the degree 
S.B., and not A.B., which seems more befitting a practitioner of the arts. 
The needs of the hour is the cultivation of the senses, not of the head and 
fingers only. Sooner or later there will be established somewhere and by 
somebody a thoroughly equipped and self-contained academy of fine arts, 
and, if it is conceived on proper lines and broad-mindedly conducted, it 
will inevitably be a success and as inevitably work an injury to the pros- 
perity of those architectural departments which are adjuncts of scientific 
schools, by withdrawing from them those pupils who feel the inborn capa- 
city to fit themselves for the higher reaches of the profession, but find the 
curriculum of the scientific schools somewhat cramping and restraining. 

But the Scientific School and the College are more allied and inter- 
changeable than may appear, and the Scientific School is arranged 
for a four years' course of prescribed study which the College is not. 
Besides, the School is growing rapidly and had funds to spare which 
the College had not. Hence the administrational advantages of a 
connection with the School. At the same time, we think that any 
future permanent professorship or permanent building should apper- 
tain to the University in general, and not to the Scientific School. 

Your Committee has in a former report urged that addresses at 
Cambridge by • practising artists would be of interest. An experi- 
mental course was given a year ago by prominent men, critics, pro- 
fessors, and artists. It seems to us that those by the artists were 
much the best suited to our purposes. The other lectures while ad- 
mirable, were often from the same point of view as that occupied 
by the regular instructors at the University. But those by active 
painters and practicing architects like Mr. Blashfield and Mr. Hop- 
kinson Smith, and Mr. Hastings, were admirably adapted to keep 
the scholar in touch with the world and to foster that artistic milieu 
without which good artistic work is difficult. The main trouble is 
with the audience. The University now furnishes but a small com- 
pany seriously interested in subjects of this kind. As the archi- 
tectural school and professional art instruction increase the audience 
will grow. While there can be no question that lectures of retro- 
spective and critical character are of the first importance, we consider 
that the instruction that the College gives in artistic matters might 
well be supplemented, as occasion offers, by a continuance of these 
University lectures by artists not connected with the College. A 
similar influence would be exerted by occasional exhibitions, for in- 
stance, of the Gray collection of engavings, exhibitions for which the 
new museum will furnish opportunities. 


The New Fogg Museum should benefit the Fine Arts Department. 
We feel in duty bound to inform you that there have been vigorous 
complaints by the teachers of the Department regarding the arrange- 
ment of the building, and often, as it seems to us, they have been 
well founded. We suggest that in the future no College building 
should be erected without giving greater regard than has been done 
in this case to the wants and needs of teachers in the Department 
concerned. As it stands, the building affords but moderate room for 
the exhibition of statues and casts, the lights are confusing, and 
some of the well lighted places are occupied by doors. If a fine 
work of art, a picture, or a statue were presented to the College, 
there are very few places where it could be creditably placed. The 
teachers of the Department have naturally looked forward to this 
building as one that would greatly extend the influence of their work, 
and since it fails in many ways to meet their needs, we feel that their 
complaints are natural and justified. The opening of the new museum 
and its collections will do something towards establishing a background 
for the Architectural School and the Fine Arts Department in general, 
but the museum does not supply all the facilities which would tend to 
create an artistic atmosphere at Cambridge. These can be met only 
by an atelier building in close neighborhood to the new museum, to 
accommodate the working rooms and libraries of the artistic depart- 
ments. At present Mr. Moore's classes are in Sever Hall ; those of 
Mr. Norton in Sanders Theatre. The Architectural Department is 
a quarter of a mile away on Jarvis Field, and none of these are at all 
near to the Library. Mr. Moore's valuable collection of photographs, 
etc. are now of no service to classes at the Architectural School, and 
the casts in Jarvis Field are of little serious use to Mr. Moore. A 
studio building adjoining the museum would economize books and 
collections, and would go a great way towards the creation of a school 
of art such as, with little doubt, is soon to grow up at Harvard. Let 
us hope that before long we may see the foundation for such a 

May 22, 1895. 

LI I. 


To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : 

In the department of Political Economy the Professors feel the 
pressure of increased numbers of students, the lack of satisfactory 
space for lecture rooms, and the lack of time for independent work 
and research. 

The difficulty is most serious in Economics 1. The lecture room 
available is ill-fitted for speaking or hearing, and the great number 
of students make it impossible, with the present corps of instructors, 
to divide them into sections small enough for adequate teaching and 
discussion. The difficulty has been met, as far as practicable, by 
strenuous and continuous work on the part of the Professors and 
instructors. This department, like others, feels the want of more 
books for reference, and of more library space for books and reading. 

ARTHUR T. LYMAN, Chairman. 

Boston, May 22. 1895. 




To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : 

The Committee to visit the Divinity School held a long and inter- 
esting conference with the Professors and feel that they can make a 
very satisfactory report on its condition. 

Of late years there has been a changed and improved condition of 
the department, and a varied gathering of students with advanced 
standard, representing many denominations. 

Fewer students during the past year have received pecuniary aid 
— one half only. 

A spirit of cooperation and good feeling has prevailed with a new 
quality of piety and of personal loyalty. The practical preaching is 
more, perhaps, than in any other school. 

The courses of some of the Professors are attended by many 
undergraduates of the College, and the need of a larger room is 

Some discussion was had about raising the tuition-fee, but the 
Dean feels that at present, at least, it would be unwise, in view of 
the fact that most theological schools charge a very low fee or none 
at all, and in consideration of the difficulties under which many of 
the advanced students come to the School. Some of the Professors 
think that a change may safely be made, but the Committee is not 
inclined to recommend a change at this time. 

ARTHUR T. LYMAN, Chairman. 
Boston, May 22, 1895. 





To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : 

We the undersigned, members of the Committee appointed to visit 
the Jefferson Physical Laboratory and Department of Physics, having 
attended a duly notified meeting at the Laboratory building on April 
3, 1895, have the honor to report as follows : — 

During the year Professor Trowbridge, assisted by Mr. Duane, 
has contrived methods and apparatus by which direct measurements 
have been made of the velocity of electric waves. The published 
results of these investigations will be a most important contribution 
to electrical science. 

Dr. Hall has continued his investigations of the conduction of heat 
by metals ; and has recently perfected an apparatus which promises 
to yield definitive results in answer to several questions which here- 
tofore have been ignored in physical research. 

Professor Peirce has contrived methods and apparatus for an in- 
vestigation of the conduction of heat by masses of marble, slate, 
etc., etc., with special provision for the study of the attending in- 
ternal temperature curves of these substances. The results of his 
investigations will be of particular value in the discussion of problems 
relating to the cooling of the earth. 

It is gratifying to note that the courses in physics generally adopted 
by high and preparatory schools throughout the country, accord sub- 
stantially in both methods and apparatus with the ' ' Harvard Sys- 
tem " as contrived by Dr. Hall and Mr. Sabine of the Jefferson 
Physical Laboratory. 

During the year Mr. Sabine has devoted much time to the con- 
trivance of apparatus for work on light and heat in the u Physics 2 " 
course. This apparatus is far superior to that which is usually found 
in the class laboratory, and much of it is adapted for use in original 
investigations of a high order. 

In almost every room of the building are to be found instruments 
which by their ingenious design and fineness of construction bear, 
witness to the very great value of the laboratory machine shop and 
the ability of its mechanician, Mr. Thomson. 


The scrupulous neatness and order which prevail throughout the 
building bear witness to the efficient administration of the Director 
and his associates. 

In former reports the need of a suitable working library within the 
building has been mentioned. This need still exists. 

A consideration of the smallness of the laboratory staff in propor- 
tion to the amount of lecture room and class work performed, 
naturally excites surprise that so much is done in the way of original 
investigation. The explanation lies in the fact that the Director and 
his associates zealously devote their nights as well as days to the 
advancement of science. It is hoped that in the near future the 
income of the laboratory will permit the assignment of an assistant 
to each one of the staff. Certainly in no other way can there be 
ensured an equal increase in the usefulness and reputation of the 
Jefferson Physical Laboratory. 





9 April, 1895. 



To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : 

On behalf of the Committee on the Administration of the College 
Chapel, I have the honor to submit the following report prepared by 
a member of the Committee at the request of the chairman : — 

The Committee on the Administration of the University Chapel 
feel that what was said in the full report of 1892 has been amply 
confirmed by the experience of the past three years. The system is 
excellent, the results, though not all that could be desired in the 
way of general attendance on the services, must be considered 
decidedly satisfactory, and the services of the University Preachers 
have been of the highest character and marked by a self-sacrificing 
spirit and by a breadth and devotion of the highest Christian 

The Committee has conferred with the present and some of the 
past members of the Board of Preachers and has asked for sugges- 
tions from them. 

" Of one thing," says one of the Preachers, " I cannot speak too 
decidedly or gratefully, namely, the reverent, attentive and devout 
attitude of the students who attend Chapel. Nothing could be more 
admirable nor more stimulating." 

More adequate provision for conferring with the students at Wads- 
worth House is desired. Frequently important conversations are 
interrupted by a caller who must be admitted or asked to wait in 
the hall or in the street. The Phillips Brooks Memorial House would 
relieve this and other pressing needs, and it is hoped that it may soon 
be possible to go on with the subscription which was interrupted by 
the financial disturbances of 1893, and that a building for the uses 
of the University Preachers and of the various religious societies may, 
before long, be erected, even if the sum of money originally con- 
templated cannot now be secured. 

The Committee desires to call attention to the good effect pro- 
duced by the attendance at Morning Prayers of members of the 


The new hymn and tune book for the Chapel Services is nearly 
ready and promises to be of much interest and value, but a portion 
of the cost thereof remains unpaid, and must be met by voluntary 

For the Committee, 

June 12, 1895. 



October, 1893. 
To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : — - 

The Committee appointed to visit the Veterinary School for the 
year 1893, respectfully reports as follows : — 

The Veterinary department of the University was organized in 
September, 1882, in the belief that a higher education was needed 
in this country by students in this branch of medicine, and for 
the the purpose of affording a free clinic for the animals of the 

This attempt, at that time, was made possible by the co-operation 
of the Faculty of the Medical School, by a gift of $2,000 from the 
Trustees of the Society for promoting Agriculture, by one of $500 from 
Mr. Henry L. Higginson, and by a guarantee for five years of the rent 
on a building to be erected for the purposes of the School. This 
support, excepting the sum of $350 given at various times in small 
amounts, is all that the enterprise has ever received. 

At the end of the first year of its existence it was found necessary 
to enlarge the School and Hospital accomodations, and money was 
lent for this purpose by the University, upon which an annual inter- 
est of six per cent, has regularly been paid. 

In the short period of ten years the School has gained such influ- 
ence that, now, connection with a university is considered by the 
profession to be almost indispensable for a veterinary school ; and 
the higher education, first given by our School, has been made 
necessary for future would-be veterinarians by a unanimous vote of 
the national representative body of the profession, at its last regular 
meeting. The effort to establish higher requirements of education 
among American veterinarians has therefore met with success. 
Such success has not, however, attended the hope that a free clinic 
for the animals of the poor might be provided. Although at first a 
free dispensary was established and maintained for a time, and even 
now occasionally animals belonging to poor owners are treated free 


of charge, there is no adequate free clinic, such as Boston should 
have. We have seen enough of the work to know that there is 
a large field for much needed deeds of kindness to suffering 

In undertaking to conduct a self-sustaining school of the higher 
grade in direct competition with those graduating students in shorter 
time, a large expenditure for instruction was necessarily incurred, 
while the income from students' fees was comparatively small. To 
meet expenses the Department has been obliged to use its small Hos- 
pital to its full extent for paying patients . 

The progress of medicine from year to year shows more and more 
clearly the close relations which exist between the diseases of men 
and those of animals. A great part of the present knowledge of 
human medicine has been attained by comparative study of the dis- 
eases of animals. 

A hospital clinic such as is contemplated, will form a valuable 
supplement to the work in the hospital for human beings. In this 
way the indirect and often unappreciated results will be no less 
important than those which are direct and obvious . 

The Hospital has for some time been over-crowded with paying 
patients, and never has had accommodations suitable for the recep- 
tion of cases of infectious diseases . 

The present Hospital contains three small wards with a total 
capacity of thirty-two stalls and boxes, and a small dog-room. 
Operations have to be performed in a room lined on two sides with 

The Hospital building should furnish at least four times as much 
room for patients, and should contain a good-sized and suitably- 
located operating-room, so that the surgeons may avail them- 
selves of the great benefits of the modern antiseptic methods in 

The accomodations for the School are equally inadequate. There 
is only one lecture-room, one laboratory, a museum-room, a reading- 
room, and a dissecting-room ; all of them much too small for present 
needs. Two or three lecture-rooms, and as many laboratories are 
pressing needs. 

The success of the School already achieved is remarkable con- 
sidering its limited and inconvenient accomodations and the meagre 
aid which it has received. For this success the staff of instructors 
deserve great credit. By their ability, their perseverance, their 
enthusiasm and their courage they have overcome obstacles which 
must have been most disheartening. The School has demonstrated 


its value and we submit that it has proved that it is worthy of a 
financial support suitable to its great possibilities, and adequate to 
attainment of the high standards for which the other departments 
of the University are justly distinguished. 

Respectfully submitted, 

Presented Dec. 4, 1895. 



Oct. 23, 1895. 

To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : — 

The undersigned, a Committee appointed by the Overseers to 
visit the Chemical Laboratory of Harvard University, respectfully 
submit the following report : — 

I. No just conception of the physical universe can be formed 
without some knowledge of the varieties of matter which are called 
elements, and of the forces and laws under which those elements 
combine, change their combinations with change of circumstances, 
and build themselves into the definite objects which surround us ; 
therefore no scheme of a reasonably liberal education can be satis- 
factory that fails to impart instruction in Chemistry. A French 
saying to the effect that Chemistry is as eyes to the blind, does not 
too strongly express the perpetual satisfaction and advantage 
afforded by even a rudimental knowledge of Chemistry. 

But, beyond such rudimental instruction in one of the principal 
departments of human intelligence, a wise community must further 
train many of its youth in either of two divergent ways. One of 
these branches of instruction imparts thorough knowledge of that 
lucid crystallized arrangement of all our conquests in this vast field 
which is sometimes called Theoretical Chemistry, and in the methods 
by which further conquests in it may be effected ; the other branch, 
commonly called Technical Chemistry, shows how these conquests 
are utilized by applying chemical knowledge to the direct service of 
mankind, as in the manufacture of various substances needful to 
human comfort ; this includes instruction as to existing methods and 
apparatus, and the means by which these and their products may be 

It is obvious that, though these two paths begin as one, and con- 
tinue for a time nearly parallel, the training of a man whose aim in 
life is to instruct others, or of one who aspires to extend the present 
limits of human comprehension, should not, except in the earlier 


stages, be identical with that of another who intends to seek his 
livelihood by supplying in part some one or more of the many com- 
modities needful to his fellow-men, or by serving them as physician, 
as sanitary engineer, or in any kindred manner. 

If the question were now an open one, it might be urged with 
much force and with propriety that Harvard University should con- 
fine its teaching of Chemistry to sound instruction in the principles of 
Theoretical Chemistry; that is, to the science only, leaving the field 
of art or Applied Chemistry to collateral institutions, such as the 
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. But we are obliged to 
remember that the University courses have long been adapted in part 
to the training of students in Technical Chemistry, and that Harvard 
stands before the public at this time pledged to continue such 

We approve, therefore, of the courses of Harvard University as 
laid down in its " Announcement of the Department of Chemistry," 
which show a well-considered intention to impart training in both 
these separate paths, of Scientific or Theoretical Chemistry, and of 
Chemistry as applied to the Arts. 

The practical question to what extent and in what manner Tech- 
nical Chemistry should be taught there, is discussed later in this 

II. Having expressed our conviction that no education can be 
regarded as liberal in which Chemistry is omitted, we now declare 
our equally-fixed conviction that special study of Chemistry can be 
best built upon the foundation of such general education and mental 
training as are afforded by the curriculum of a good university or 
college. Justus von Liebig said that his best students, those who 
became most distinguished, were always men who had had a univer- 
sity education ; and precisely similar views have been expressed by 
Dr. August Wilhelm Hofmann, and by other eminent chemists and 

The chemical student of this country requires at least a reading 
knowledge of German, French and Latin, and is pitiably deficient if 
unable to express himself with unmistakable precision and terseness, 
and even with a certain elegance, in his own language. We suggest 
as an exercise for chemical students in their second year the transla- 
tion into English of such short treatise or text-book chapter in Ger- 
man or French, as the Professor of Chemistry shall indicate, and for 
post-graduate students, the preparation of a thesis in either German 
or French ; study of Chemistry in original German and French text- 
books is desirable in post-graduate work. 


Without implying negligence hitherto in this respect, we urge that 
clearness and correctness of expression in both speech and writing 
be constantly insisted upon. 

III. The scope and range of chemical science have been remark- 
ably extended of late years by the development of that new branch 
designated Physical Chemistry, treating of the relations between 
what have been regarded as simply physical agencies and those which 
have been considered as chemical only. These relations have been, 
and properly may be, treated from either a mechanical or a thermo- 
dynamical point of view, the latter being hitherto most approved ; 
both require training not only in such preliminary branches of Physics 
as light, heat, and electricity, but also in the higher Mathematics. 

Training in Physical Chemistry having thus become an essential 
part of the education of a well-equipped chemist, advanced study of 
Chemistry should surely be preceded by study of thermo-dynamics 
and of the calculus, as well as by that of General Chemistry and 

We are gratified to observe that these views find practical expres- 
sion in the Harvard Course No. 6, and that this course is intended 
particularly for graduates, who must therefore have previously mas- 
tered those branches which we consider to be fundamental for profit- 
able study of Physical Chemistry. 

By General Chemistry we understand Descriptive Chemistry as it 
should be taught, not by a course of lectures, or at least not by these 
alone, nor by such imperfect training in Qualitative Chemistry as 
some American colleges offer, but by a full and thorough course of 
Experimental and Preparative Chemistry, this last being too often 
neglected altogether or taught very superficially, although there are 
now many excellent German works on the subject especially in the 
department of Organic Chemistry. 

An important advantage of the making of various chemical prep- 
arations and of experimenting is the opportunity thus given for 
acquiring the manual dexterity so indispensable in all good chemical 
work. Qualitative analysis should first follow this preparative 
course ; quantitative analysis then naturally succeeds ; lastly Theo- 
retical Chemistry, which must have received some attention during 
all the earlier practice, demands most careful study after the student 
has mastered these preliminaries. Again we remark that the chem- 
ical courses of Harvard show in most part correct apprehension of 
what we conceive to be sound methods of teaching. 

IV. The importance of Applied or Technical Chemistry has been 
well expressed thus by a recent writer; viz., " Chemistry enters so 


largely into all the arts of modern life that few understand how much 
they are indebted to it, still less how much greater benefit they can 
derive from closer study of the relation between chemistry and their 
own branches of business." 

Technical Chemistry — the actual every-day, bread- winning use of 
chemistry — cannot in the nature of things be exhaustively taught in 
any school, for no school can be expected to set up expensive plants 
of several sorts upon a manufacturing scale, nor can manufacturers 
be expected to open to students of any school the secrets of their 
crafts upon which their business prosperity depends. 

Some expansion of the preparative or synthetic instruction above 
alluded to may, however, be profitably undertaken, and moderate 
apparatus simulating on a small scale such as is used in chemical 
manufacturing, may perhaps be advantageously set up to illustrate 
some few approved and practical manufacturing processes. The 
contriving of apparatus suitable for any given process is especially 
worthy of attention, for peculiarly in this field there is always room 
for the profitable exercise of ingenuity. 

So far as it may be found practicable, we commend the visiting, 
by instructors or professors and classes, of those chemical establish- 
ments within easy access which will permit such visits ; the professor 
or instructor to explain upon the ground the processes inspected, and 
each student to prepare afterward a written account of apparatus 
and process for the criticism of the teacher. 

The analysis of materials used in any given manufacture, whether 
one of those visited or not, of divers substances at different stages 
of that manufacture, and of its finished products and its by-products, 
will be found advantageous in itself, and as affording opportunity 
for instructive remarks by the teacher. 

An important feature of the study of Technical Chemistry, demand- 
ing careful even though brief attention from both teachers and 
students, is the estimation of profit and loss. 

This estimation involves study of (1) Capital account, viz. : cost 
of land, buildings, and apparatus for a given process upon a given 
scale ; also amount of money required to carry the necessary stock 
of materials and products and to pay wages, etc., until remuneration 
comes from sales. (2) Cost of product, made up of cost of material 
of all sorts, including fuel, freight charges, wages and salaries; 
repairs, insurance and depreciation ; rent for fixed capital and 
interest for floating capital. (3) Cost-comparison of alternative 
methods for attaining the same or similar results, as in the old soda- 
ash process and the new ammonia-soda process ; also cost-comparison 


of the same process in different localities. (4) Comparison of pro- 
duction-cost with actual and probable market-price of product. 

No doubt this is a range of subjects which cannot be exhaustively 
studied in any laboratory, and for which we cannot expect to find 
teachers very well equipped, yet, in every attempt to make technical 
chemistry available for bread-winning, such questions as these must 
be scrutinized and correctly answered before the industry in view can 
prudently be undertaken. The habit of considering this aspect of 
chemistry, even to the moderate extent practicable in a laboratory of 
instruction, will surely aid the student in solving the economic prob- 
lems which are certain to confront him in actual life. 

It is true that Applied Chemistry was not taught at Liebig's 
famous school at Giessen. The principles upon which the applica- 
tion of chemical science are based were taught there with assiduous 
care and thoroughness, so that its graduates when entered upon prac- 
tical life were frequently able, after brief study of the actual details 
in a manufacturing establishment, to apply those scientific principles 
with advantage and success. Yet while freely according precedence 
to this thorough mastery of principles, we are nevertheless persuaded 
that in most cases the future career of the student who aims to qual- 
ify himself, in a school, for practical business application of chemical 
science, will be facilitated by some such training as we have just 

V. The inadequacy of Boylston Hall for the accommodation of 
Harvard's chemical students is conspicuously shown by the present 
hasty fitting up of a basement-room, almost a cellar, to receive a 
considerable number of them. As a temporary expedient to gain 
room of some sort, promptly, at slight cost, this step may be defended ; 
it cannot be regarded as a permanent satisfaction of the constant de- 
mand for larger space which arises from the constant increase in the 
number of students, an increase which is sure to continue and expand 
unless checked by the failure of the University to provide for it. 

We learn from Professor Jackson that the chemical students in 
Courses B, 1 and 5, numbered 493 on October 10, 1895, being 130 
more than in 1894. The desk-room now available for them, includ- 
ing the new basement laboratory, will accommodate 551 students, so 
that 58 more could yet be taken. 

But if the applications for next year should show the same increase 
as did those for 1895, and no further provision be made to receive 
them, 72 students would have to be rejected in 1896. 

Should the advanced students and the research department be 
removed to a separate building, as below suggested, the space thus 


gained would accommodate the students now placed in the basement, 
and 150 more. Adding these to the 58 surplus above-named, 208 
students beyond the number now entered in Courses B, 1 and 5, could 
thus be accommodated ; enough, perhaps, to meet the growth of 
1896 and 1897. 

Even if Boylston Hall afforded sufficient space, it cannot be 
regarded as a suitable laboratory for Harvard University. It was 
not originally designed for this use, and after all the improvements 
that have been made, some of them excellent, it is hopelessly inferior 
to the modern laboratories of some other institutions. 

Instead of attempting further modifications of that establishment, 
we are of opinion that the University should now look to the erection 
of an entirely new laboratory, and this in a new locality, because 
Boylston Hall is too solid and handsome an edifice to be lightly de- 
stroyed to make room for another. If the University could apply 
that edifice to another purpose, and could therefore pay for it to the 
Chemical Department out of a fund applicable to building for that 
other purpose, the sum so transferred would form an encouraging 
nucleus for the building-fund for the new laboratory. We ask the 
serious attention of the Overseers to this suggestion, since, without 
such foundation for a laboratory building fund, Harvard may be 
obliged to lag behind its sister institutions during an indefinite 
future, and to lose rank in one of its principal departments, unless 
indeed one of her Alumni or some other intelligent and generous 
citizen should bestow upon the University the great boon of a really 
suitable laboratory. 

Should it be found impossible to procure in any way the need- 
ful funds for a proper building, we suggest that a new building 
of moderate size might be erected apart from Boylston Hall for 
the use of advanced students and for original research. Then, 
Boylston Hall, relieved of a considerable part of its present 
occupants, could be made temporarily adequate for the remaining 
classes without obliging students to occupy the above-mentioned 

But we strongly deprecate the adoption of this alternative, not 
only, or chiefly on account of its involving some difficulty in admin- 
istration, but because of its radical insufficiency, and its confession 
of weakness that seems to us unworthy of the great University. 

Another alternative is the building of additions to Boylston Hall, 
thus keeping all branches of chemical instruction, and all the future 
students, in the old spot, but the much ampler accommodations that 
are so urgently needed, cannot be properly provided by mere expan- 


lion of what now exists, for the development of tlie science indicates 
the advantage of a quite different laboratory construction. Not only 
can better arrangements be made for the teaching of students, but 
original scientific research, which more than anything else makes a 
university illustrious throughout the world, which does so much to 
maintain alertness of mind in both teachers and students by culti- 
vating what Tyndall calls scientific use of the imagination, and 
which always commands the respect of both scientific and practical 
men, can be much promoted by the offering of suitable accommoda- 
tion for its prosecution. We repeat that one new building should be 
erected to provide room for all purposes, and we prefer to assume 
that in some way the funds requisite for that suitable building will 
be forthcoming. 

In order that a clear idea may be reached of the amount of money 
required for this new modern laboratory that Harvard so obviously 
needs, a suitable design should be elaborated with as little delay as 
the case admits. Contractor's estimates could then be invited with- 
out fear of costly extra charges, and efforts to raise money would 
more hopefully be made when the needful sum could be confidently 

Time as well as money will be saved by very careful study of the 
interior arrangements after examination of the best laboratories to be 
found at other institutions, hasty action might defeat what is doubt- 
less the intention of all who are interested in the subject, viz. : — 
that the new Harvard laboratory shall be at least equal in quality to 
any other in this country, and be large enough to accommodate Har- 
vard's chemical students for many years to come. 

The exterior may properly be of brick, wdth cheap stone trimmings, 
plain in form and quite devoid of costly ornamentation, yet possess- 
ing the dignity of well-designed mass and contour, which the new 
Public Library Building of Boston so happily exemplifies. 

Perhaps no better method could be adopted in designing the new- 
Harvard Chemical Laboratory than that which was so successfully 
employed to obtain a suitable building for physical research in the 
Jefferson Physical Laboratory at Cambridge. In that case each pro- 
fessor and one donor sent in a plan embodying his views of w r hat a 
physical laboratory should be, which plans and views were criticized 
by a meeting of the committee. A second set of improved plans 
resulted, then, after further scrutiny, a third, and a fourth. The 
fifth plan, expressing the corrected and modified views of all, was 
adopted, and a practically perfect building was erected at a reason- 
able cost. 


We are, however, not prepared to promise to bestow the time and 
study which that method implies for each of us. We consider it 
more expedient that the faculty of Harvard's Chemical Department 
should first prepare at least a sketch plan of what they consider the 
most suitable building for the purpose, and submit the same to this 
Committee, or to its successors. 

S. M. WELD, 

Presented Dec. 4, 1895. 



To the Board of Overseers : — 

The undersigned members of the committee appointed to visit 
the Jefferson Physical Laboratory and Department of Physics, 
having attended a duly notified meeting at the laboratory building 
on May 15, 1896, have the honor to report as follows: — 

During the current year, the Director and his associates, in 
addition to their routine work connected with the instruction of 
four hundred undergraduate students, have made many important 
investigations with resulting creditable additions to the science of 

The subjoined list of titles of papers published bears witness to a 
zealous activity by the Laboratory Staff : Carbon and Oxygen in 
the Sun ; by John Trowbridge. Triangulation by means of the 
Cathode Photograph} 7 ; by John Trowbridge. On the Velocity of 
Electric Waves ; by John Trowbridge and William Duane. On a 
Certain Class of Equipotential Surfaces; by B. O. Peirce. Tem- 
perature Variations of the Thermal Conductivities of Marble and 
Slate; by B. O. Peirce and R. W. Willson. On the Thermal 
Conductivity of Mild Steel; by Edwin H. Hall. 

It is satisfactory to note that the Director, in his investigations 
of the Roentgen Rays, has contrived processes and apparatus which 
have been adopted by the most successful workers in this new and 
fascinating field of physical research. 

Mr. W. C. Sabine has contrived a most promising method and 
apparatus for the determination of the accoustic properties of 
enclosed space. The apparatus yields a beautiful photographic 
record of normal sound waves and of the reverberatory waves 
resulting therefrom under certain conditions. 

The establishment of a suitable working library within the 
laboratory building is most desirable ; and an additional mechanical 
assistant would render possible an increase in such original work as 
must be relied upon to promote the welfare and distinction of the 
Jefferson Physical Laboratory. In connection with this subject, it 
is fair to assume that any provisions which tend to increase the 
public interest in and appreciation of the Laboratory work must 
favor such a beneficent endowment as is prerequisite to its full 
development as a centre of physical research. 

Francis Blake, 
A. Lawrence Rotch. 
May 18, 1896. 



To the Overseers of Harvard University : 

Dear Sirs,— Your committee to visit the Chemical Laboratory 

beg leave to make the following report: 

Four of your committee, including the chairman, made a visit to 
the Chemical Laboratory on Tuesday, May 19th, and spent several 
hours m a thorough investigation of the premises, guided by the 
professors in charge, and reports made by them. 

The competency of the instructors cannot be called in question 
but their surroundings, to teachers of ordinary ability, would be 
overwhelmingly embarrassing. 

There is a great and pressing need for a new laboratory building, 
to be built at once. The present building, Boylston Hall, when 
built m 1858, contained a single laboratory with places for about 
forty students. At this day, after nearly forty years' use, it has 
crowded into it seven public laboratories and 568 desks occupied by 
students. The largest addition to its accommodations was made 
last summer, when a laboratory for 232 students was constructed in 
the cellar. At the time this room was planned it was thought that 
it would provide all the desk room necessary for the class in descrip- 
tive chemistry for five or more years, but when it was opened last 
October every desk was full, as the class had grown from 200 in 
1894 to 302 in 1895 ; and not only was this room full, but the class 
in both its sections overflowed into the room for qualitative analysis 
At the same time, the class in qualitative analysis had grown from 
68 to over 100, so that 408 desks were needed for these two classes 
The number of desks available was 428, leaving only 20 places 
empty. To these might be added 45 desks in the laboratory for 
elementary chemistry, which could, after considerable outlay only 
be used for these classes, although even then they would be poorly 
adapted for this purpose. The number of places therefore available 
for the growth of these two classes from 1895 to 1896 (next 
autumn) is, at most, 65. The growth from 1894 to 1895 was 
HO. This brings before the Chemical Department the imminent 


clanger of rejecting students who have elected courses in chemistry, 
a most unfortunate necessity, as such rejections seriously interfere 
with the well-laid plans for the whole college course, and may even 
prove a grave hindrance to more than one man in his subsequent 

This danger cannot be met with the construction of a new labora- 
tory room, as the only space large enough for such a room (a part of 
the cellar) must be used for administrative purposes and the auxiliary 
rooms of the more advanced inorganic laboratories. 

The condition of things in the laboratories for the more advanced 
elect! ves is equally desperate. All are full, and the large size of the 
two elementary classes promises in the next two years to increase 
these electives in proportion. How to provide for this increase is a 
problem which it seems impossible to solve in the present building. 
Already the lower courses in quantitative analysis and organic 
chemistry have driven the men working on research in these lines 
into a corner, and any further infringment on the space devoted 
to research will seriously interfere with the highest work of the 
department ; but this space is all that is available for the growth 
of these lower courses, and this, even if used to the utmost, is still 

The necessity of using every part of the building possible for 
students' laboratories has crowded the store rooms, preparation 
rooms, and other administrative offices into such cramped quarters 
that it has become a matter of great difficulty to carry on most 
important work with the necessary promptness and accuracy, and 
more room in this department is imperatively needed. The work is 
nearly doubled by the unfavorable conditions forced on the Director 
by the construction of the building. 

It should be observed, also, that all the public rooms in Boylston 
Hall, with four exceptions, are at present used for purposes other 
than those for which they were built, and, although everything has 
been done to overcome the obstacles offered by these conditions, in 
many cases it has proved impossible to adapt the rooms to their new 
uses in a thoroughly satisfactory manner. This is conspicuously 
true of the arrangements for physical chemistry. The teaching of 
the class in descriptive chemistry is also badly hampered by the 
necessity of having it divided between two laboratories, one in the 
cellar, and the other in the attic; but all these latter disadvantages, 
great as they are, become insignificant when compared with the fact 
dwelt upon first, that in the near future, perhaps next year, it will 
be necessary to reject men who have elected courses in chemistry. 

There is but one remedy for these evils, which will press even 
more severely on the University in the future than at present. This 
is a new chemical laboratory large enough for present needs and 
future growth, and provided with all the facilities for modern 
chemical work. This should be built at once, not only because 
of the pressing needs of the chemical department, but in order 
to avoid unprofitable outlay in patching the present building, which 
is inadequate, and from its general construction impossible to be 
changed so that modern processes can be profitably used. 

Stephen M. Weld, 
Alexander Cochrane, 
E. R. Squibb, 
Edward D. Pearce. 

Boston, May 27, 1896. 



The Bussey Institution has been in operation for twenty-five years 
dunng winch period its teachers have striven to establish a pracZi 
school of agncultnre in accordance with the terms of Mr. Lssey's 

The courses of instruction have been excellent, but the students 
avaumg themselves of the facilities offered by the school hav 
always been few in number, occasionally dwindling down to almos 
none. Reasons for this are not difficult to find, 'hough which o„ e 
of the several causes contributed most to the non-success of the 
school it would be hard to determine 

mavtto? n0t W ° rth WWIe t0 dW6jI t0 ° Ion = on P ast h -tory, it 
may be well o suggest a few reasons why the Institution, perhaps 

i t: r r kedpopuiarity ' bef ° re ™*^ « —j : 

nons tor its future government. 

Undoubtedly the great fire of' 1872, which reduced almost to noth 

xpens 8 tZ 7 ? ^ ^ ° f "" ^ ^^ t0 ^ ^ 
expenses of the Bussey Institution, had much to do with its troubles 

The number of students seeking an education in agriculture pnre 
to i^nf 'I e T dingIy limifed ' aDd the BUSS ^ I-«t„4 owtag 

ciSies of I" ' UnaWe t0 eXteUd t0 ltS StUd - ts th 

x clion o?%r Qr r S ? Cambridg6 ' 0a " W »° re ~ble 
e^ectatmns of attracting those students who desire something more 

ban a purely technical education in farming, from other agriculZ 

olleges winch combine other studies with their course in agricufe" 

andthenvaryof such schools as Amherst Agricultural SgTa 
chool subbed by the Commonwealth and National Government 

has undoubtedly been deleterious government, 

ua^jradtntelr 881 ^ 1 "*°* °°" 

ceslf ZulJhTr, * " argiCUltUral C ° n ^> to be *<* «»e- 
eessful, should be located ln or near a farming community and its 

curse of instruction so arranged, in point of time, Z Sey ^ 

be most vigorous during the warm months of the year when the 


crops are growing. Mere lecture room or laboratory work could, of 
course, be carried on through the winter months as well, perhaps 
better, than in warmer weather, but not so with most of the 
practical work. 

The demand for an education in farming pure and simple is very 
small in Massachusetts to-day, and in this immediate vicinity almost 

The geographical location of the buildings of the Bussey Insti- 
tution seems most unfortunate ; not only is their situation too far 
removed from an agricultural community, but Forest Hills is not 
near enough to Cambridge or Boston to render properly effective 
either the Lawrence Scientific School, Botanic Garden, or the Veteri- 
nary School, which, collaterally, might be valuable adjuncts. 

The main building at Forest Hills is well enough adapted to 
in-door work, though not, strictly speaking, a modern structure ; 
ever since it was built, however, the institution has lacked both 
funds and students, and probably the obvious want of money may 
have deterred many students from going there instead of elsewhere, 
oblivious of the fact that probably the course of study is more 
valuable as given at the Bussey than at most agricultural colleges. 

In view of these facts, and without at this time dwelling further 
on its history, it may be assumed, without fear of contradiction, 
that if, after twenty-five years of continuous expenditure, the 
number of students cannot be easily raised above even the highest 
number yet recorded in the school (22), either there is no proper 
demand for such a school on the lines now arranged, or else the 
teachers are unable to properly hold the students' attention. 

Under either condition, it seems wise to the Committee to try and 
reorganize on some new basis, either by combining with other 
schools, or other department of the University, or by starting 
independently on entirely new lines, or both. 

The general feeling in the Committee is that, in order to do the 
most good, the scope of such reorganization should be quite drastic, 
and that, while violent and rapid changes may not be desirable, yet 
to achieve the best results, the goal to be eventually reached must be 
very different from that hitherto in view. 

Briefly stated, the financial situation does not seem to be so des- 
perate as would at first appear. 

As before stated, for twenty years past the school has been 
financially starved, the teachers have had a hard fight to hold any 
students at all, while the college has, from time to time, made 
advances of money to the Bussey Trust, till now the total debt 


amounts to over $54,800, the interest on which sum encroaches 
materially on the slim income derived from that portion of the 
Trust applicable to the running expenses of the Institution. The 
payment of this large amount can, however, doubtless be arranged, 
when desired, by the sale of land belonging to the Woodland Hills 
estate, and located near Brookline Avenue, on Thurlow and Ux- 
bridge Streets (not yet built). This land, assessed by the city in 
1895 for $31,200, could, it is thought, be sold for enough to 
extinguish the debt now clue the college. 

Your Committee would recommend the subordinating of the purely 
agricultural feature of the Institution to other work of an allied 
nature, and such changes in time of instruction as would bring the 
bulk of the holidays in the winter season ; and extend the term in 
such parts of the autumn and summer as would enable the students 
to take advantage and profit most by outdoor instruction. They 
would also recommend the abandonment of the scheme of having 
the Institution a school principally for the teaching of farming. 

They would recommend the starting of a school of landscape 
gardening (or landscape architecture), having in addition to the 
existing laboratory and lecture room facilities, proper drafting- 
rooms and appliances for teaching landscape engineering and 
kindred and collateral subjects ; in fact, the establishment of a 
school where young men can obtain such knowledge as will fit them 
to take charge of the planning, developing, and maintenance of 
parks, country estates, cemeteries, etc., etc., would, it is thought, 
be a welcome addition to the existing professional schools. The 
fact that there is now no such school in America would, moreover, 
have a tendency to attract a large number of students interested in 
such work ; the additional annual expense involved would not be 
excessive, and the establishing of such a school in no way conflicts 
with the terms of Mr. Bussey's will. 

Such proposed arrangement would call for greater harmony between 
the various professional schools than at present appears to exist ; in 
addition to the teachers now employed at the Bussey, there should be 
lecturers, two or three in number, drawn from active professional 
life, who, at regular intervals, could give instructions in special 

The economic study of Forestry has never been attempted in this 
country, though it is easy to see that in comparatively few years the 
effective forest areas on the continent will have been so much 
reduced on area, etc., that tree culture, for economic purposes, 
will become if not necessary, at least very desirable. 


Massachusetts possesses not only large areas of wild land and 
every variety of soil, on which is growing all sorts of trees, but also 
sandy and rocky areas, etc., etc., on which nothing is seen but 
a scrub growth of no value. It would, therefore, seem eminently 
suitable for scientific, tree culture, to be started here first. 

The Committee also believes that the school would be aided in its 
work and increased in popularity by acquiring two or three rooms in 
some part of the city proper during the winter months, which could 
be used for lecture rooms and for demonstrations for those people 
who are not able to avail themselves at all seasons of the year of 
the facilities offered at Forest Hills. 

It may not be generally understood that the larger portion of such 
proposed new courses are, even now, taught. The Committee's 
suggestion is, in fact, new combinations of existing facilities, sup- 
plemented by the work of a limited number of skilled specialists, 
rather than entire new courses of instruction. 

The blending of studies already well organized ought to render 
possible the proper administration of the new work by the regular 
department executives, for the present at least, without outside 

To be most effective, it seems as if the following should be either 
consolidated, or, at least, be operated in the closest harmony : 

Bussey Institution. Arnold Arboretum. 

Botanic Garden. Veterinary School. 

Lawrence Scientific School. 

It is suggested by the Committee that the proposed rearrangement 
of courses be started at once by a series of lectures on Landscape 

October 14, 1896. 

Presented October 20, 1896, to the Board of Overseers. 
November 11, 1896, referred to the Committee on Reports and Reso- 
lutions and returned without recommendation. 



To the Board of Overseers of Harvard University : — 

The Visiting Committee of the Department of Philosophy has the 
honor to report, as the result of time and thought given to the subject 
by us, its members, during the past year. 

1st, Our conviction that the Department is doing work of 
great value, instinct with new life, work wisely planned and well 
carried out. 

2nd, That there is, however, still another field of work which might 
also, in our opinion, be made of great value to the undergraduate 
student, but which has never had the independent place nor the 
importance given it which it seems to ns it ought to have. For the 
undergraduate, one of the chief functions of a Department of 
Philosophy, we think, ought to be to give him training in habits of 
philosophic thought with regard not only to special subjects but to 
all matters of either speculative or practical interest with which his 
life may have to do. To this end we feel that if, when opportunity 
arises and the right man to create a branch of work which would be 
new as an independent one is found, courses were established which 
should have no direct relation to the instruction given in metaphysics, 
psychology, or any special science whatever, but which, through the 
instrumentality of lectures, theses, and discussions, should seek to 
develop among the students habits of speculative enquiry, of just 
and well considered reasoning, and of clear expression, courses 
whose sole professed function it should be to arouse men to original 
and independent thought and to quicken their imagination to grasp 
the synthetic significance and deeper relationship of facts, that the 
importance of the work they might accomplish could hardly be over- 
estimated. Undoubtedly this is work that is already being done 
within the Department in relation to metaphysics and certain other 
special subjects, but our observation has been that taking the 
University as a whole it is work that is greatly needed, and we believe 
that a broadening influence of this kind in its midst would be helpful 
not to the students alone but to the whole life of the University. We 
recognize fully the practical difficulties in the way of such teaching, 


but we think they might be overcome if it were well borne in mind that 
it is not instruction in a science but the awakening and guidance of 
men's independent mental activities that is needed. Let men choose 
their own subjects within certain bounds, according to the outside 
work they may chance to be doing in history, economics, literature, 
or following any special scientific or social interests they may feel, or 
the practical political questions of the day ; let them write upon these, 
giving their own thoughts and making their own criticisms as fully as 
they can be made to do. Let men hear their own work and that of 
their companions read, appreciated, criticized, and discussed not by 
their teacher alone but by one another. Let there be regular class- 
room debates upon questions of more or less general interest. And 
finally, let there be lectures that shall make the students realize the 
value, the immediate practical importance, even, of the work they 
are doing, and we feel convinced that its influence upon many, at 
least, among them could not be otherwise than far-reaching and pro- 
found. Of course, this work would extend upon the one side into 
the essay work that is already being done in the English Department 
and upon the other into such thesis work as the various special 
Departments may give their men to do, but, although we now merely 
suggest this as a possible field, for future development only when the 
time prove ripe for it, yet the longer we have considered the matter 
the more convinced we have felt alike of the reality of the need and 
of the practicability of the work it seems to demand. 

3rd, That the thesis work of the Department seems to us of special 
value, and that the more the thesis can be used in the place of 
examination papers as the test of acquirement for all the higher work 
of the Department the fairer we think that test will be and the better 
the work itself will become. We are also decidedly of the opinion 
that all ten-minute examinations had best, in general, be done away 
with, additional hour examinations, if necessary, being substituted 
in their place. They are not fair tests of attainment and they can- 
not but interfere with the work of the lecture room. 

4th, That in our opinion better work and of a higher order will be 
done by the students if not more than three grades at most be used 
in marking those papers which rise above the " Condition " line. We 
think that any finer-drawn distinction than this cannot but tend to 
withdraw their minds from a wider and more intelligent interest in 
their subject to concentrate it upon the often insignificant details that 
help to make up a more perfect paper. Four grades are now nominally 
used for this purpose, but a custom, common in the University, of 
adding the plus and minus signs to these, signs which actually do 


count toward standing in the general practice although they do not in 
theory, multiplies what in our judgment is already too great. 

5th, That another point which seems worthy of consideration in 
connection with the examinations is that much of the work both of 
reading and of marking the students' papers is done not by the 
teachers themselves, although it is they, as formerly, who prepare 
the examination papers, but by Dr. Rand, upon whose shoulders a 
very serious responsibility is thus thrown, one that could only be 
entrusted with safety to a man like him of long experience in the 
work and of special fitness for it. Where such a one can be 
obtained, however, the relief thus afforded its teachers from a part 
at least of the labor that the examinations involve in the larger 
courses cannot but be of great value to the higher work of the 
Department both in teaching and in production. 

6th, That, while in the highest and most advanced courses of the 
Department the number of students who attend them is necessarily 
small and their work is of a character to demand the personal assist- 
ance and supervision of their professor and to bring them into 
constant contact and immediate personal relation with him, and 
while in the introductory courses of the Department, on the other 
hand, the courses are very largely followed and the work is scarcely 
of a character to demand more than text-book and lecture can give, 
yet in the intermediate courses, where the men, though fewer than in 
the introductory ones, are yet considerable in number and where their 
minds are already aroused to and interested in the discussion of new 
and difficult subjects, it seems to us of real importance that the work 
of the lecturer should be supplemented by that of younger assistants, 
men perhaps who have but just obtained their Ph.D. degree and as 
to whom it would be a benefit not only to themselves but to the Uni- 
versity if she could retain them about her for another year or two. 
It would be a great gain to the students in these courses, we are con- 
vinced, if there were men to whom they could freely turn not only 
for help in what they do not understand but for the discussion of the 
ideas that occur to them and of the points of view that they may 
make their own. We strongly advise therefore that this be done to 
as great an extent as possible in all the higher and intermediate 
courses where the attendance is large, as we think that it would 
greatly increase the benefit the students might get from them. 

7th, That, in regard to the courses the Department now gives in 
Education and Teaching, it seems to us of the highest importance 
that this subject should be made a study of from every point of 
view, and it is evident that this can only be thoroughly and syste- 


matically done by teaching teachers to observe facts, to compare 
methods and their results, to seek after principles, and to keep in touch 
with the growing science built up out of the experience and thought 
of all. It strikes us especially as most essential that men and women 
who are studying to be teachers should be taught to realize the intimate 
relation of their profession to psychologic study and should them- 
selves have a well-grounded knowledge of its principles, and we also 
believe that a study of the methods, or an observation of the absence 
of method, by which individual subjects are at the moment taught at 
Harvard and elsewhere will result in good, not only to those studying 
but to those whose ways of teaching are studied, tending with these 
latter to increase their consciousness of what they are doing and of 
why they are doing it, provided always that it be clearly impressed 
on the student's mind that the infinite variety of individual character 
and circumstance makes no method at all better than an unadaptive 
and rigid one. On these grounds, therefore, we consider that all 
encouragement possible to work of a wider range in this field should 

be given. 

GEORGE B. DORR, Chairman. 

I agree with the 1st, 3rd, 5th, 6th and 7th suggestion, and as to 
the others I have not yet formed an opinion. 


November 24, 1896. 



To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : — 

The Committee to visit the Veterinary School for the year 
1895-96 submits the following report : — 

On November 4, 1895, members of the Visiting Committee sent 
to the President the following communication : — 

"Boston, November 4, 1895. 
"Hon. Charles W. Eliot, 

" President of Harvard College. 

"Dear Sir, — The following communication is sent to you to be 
submitted to the proper governing body or bodies of the University. 

"In 1893 the Visiting Committee to the Harvard Veterinary 
School, after careful consideration, became convinced that a free 
clinic for the animals of the poor was essential to the prosperity of 
the School. During the two years which have intervened, various 
other plans for strengthening and improving the School have been 
considered by the Committee. Such consideration has made even 
more clear the importance of the free clinic. A week or two ago 
it was learned that a brick stable building on Northampton Street, 
near Tremont Street, measuring 60 feet by 100 feet could be secured 
at a rental of $1,200 per annum. Upon examination the location 
was found to be desirable, the rental reasonable, and the accommo- 
dations well adapted to and sufficient for a satisfactory test of the 
free clinic plan. Believing that the opportunity offered was an 
unusual one, and finding that the building was likely soon to be 
leased to other parties, the undersigned members of the Visiting- 
Committee decided to assume themselves the responsibility of renting 
it for a term of three years. They now offer the building for said 
term to the College for the use of the Veterinary Department for a 
free clinic and for other cognate uses. 

"Since the undersigned agreed to take a lease of the premises, 
four gentlemen have subscribed $100 each per annum for three 
years for medicines and other outfit. The owner of the premises, 


learning the purposes for which a lease was sought, agreed to a 
rental $200 per annum less than that which there is reason to 
believe he could otherwise have obtained. 

" The educational advantages of a free clinic will not be disputed. 
It may even be doubted whether Harvard University ought to hold 
itself out as an instructor in veterinary science, unless it can furnish 
that essential instruction which comes only from a general clinic. 

"The abstract of the accounts of the School enclosed herewith, 
shows how promptly and satisfactorily the School responded to the 
more liberal educational advantages furnished five years ago. Siuce 
that time the fees have more than doubled ; — in fact, have nearly 
trebled. In this connection also it is to be noted that of the $2,600 
deficit for the past year, about one half is for interest at the rate of 
six per cent, upon prior advancements. The acceptance by the 
Corporation of the offer now made may not increase the net out- 
lay per annum of this Department. If, however, such net outlay 
should be increased, it is to be borne in mind that each dollar of 
College funds which goes into this Department will produce more of 
educational value than heretofore. 

"Another aspect of the value of the free clinic has had great 
weight in determining our action. We believe that the free clinic is 
the best method to spread abroad that knowledge of the Department, 
and arouse that interest in and appreciation of its work which will 
render it possible to secure for it an adequate endowment. 

u It has long been recognized that there is among veterinarians 
an antagonism to the School which has been a barrier in the way of 
securing endowment funds. Whatever may have been the cause of 
this antagonism, it is believed that there is no better and surer way 
to dispel it than by giving to the profession an opportunity subject 
to suitable regulations, to operate in the free clinic building of the 

' ' If the free clinic is established and if the Board of Overseers 
will then appoint a Committee of its own members to join with the 
Visiting Committee in securing endowment funds, we shall enter on 
the work with fresh courage, renewed zeal, and confident hope of 
success. The public interest in the questions connected with tuber- 
culosis and anti-toxine makes the present time peculiarly a time when 
effort is likely to be rewarded with satisfactory results. 

; ' The suggestion has been made that an appeal should be made to 
the Legislature to furnish funds for the support of the School. We 
do not approve of that course, — we do not think that an appropria- 
tion could be secured, and we are unwilling to make the attempt. 


u No one of the undersigned was in any way responsible for the 
organization of the Veterinary School. No one of the undersigned 
was in any way responsible for its location on Village Street. No 
special obligation to support the School rests upon us, other than 
that which results from undertaking the duties of members of the 
Visiting Committee." 

Under date of November 29 a response was received from the 
President, notifying the Committee that the Corporation had voted 
to accept the offer of the Visiting Committee. This letter contained 
the following encouraging statement: " This vote means that the 
Corporation has decided to persevere in carrying on the Veterinary 
Department. They have it in mind to make an immediate effort to 
strengthen the staff of the School and then to procure an endowment." 

Pursuant to the foregoing correspondence, individual members of 
the Visiting Committee took a lease of the building on Northampton 
Street for the term of three years from October 1, 1895, and became 
responsible for the rent of the same for the benefit of the School. 

The building was forthwith appropriately repaired and fitted, and 
on February 12, 1896, its use for free clinics began. Up to the first 
of November, 1896, the number of patients treated was nineteen 
hundred and forty. This is the record for nine months. 

There is satisfactory evidence that the students appreciate the 
value of the experience and instruction which the free clinic affords. 

The Committee, in accordance with the suggestion contained in 
the letter of November 4, 1895, urges the Board of Overseers to 
take measures to secure an endowment for the School. 

Boston, November 11, 1896. 




To the Board of Overseers op Harvard College : — 

In the restriction and improvement of athletic sports, Harvard 
has taken of late years a leading place. To your Committee it 
seems important that Harvard should take a similar place in 
establishing the principle that a complete system of education 
should recognize and require physical as well as mental develop- 
ment. We find to our regret that a very large proportion of 
students, not being sufficiently strong and active to play in the 
athletic teams, find no inducement to improve their physical 
condition. Thus a very large class take no regular exercise, and 
it is by no means uncommon to find men, often students of great 
promise, who leave College as much weakened in body as they are 
strengthened in mind. 

To encourage all students to devote a reasonable amount of 
time and energy to the development of their bodies and general 
health, seems to your Committee to be of the very greatest 
importance, and we would commend to the careful consideration 
of this Board suggestions for a prescribed course of physical 
exercise during the Freshman year, which will be found in the 
report of Dr. Sargent appended to this report. Such work is of 
obvious advantage, and as it has been satisfactorily tried in several 
colleges, we believe that it is practicable, and that it would be 
be highly beneficial at Harvard. 

We find that the present system of physical oversight and 
examinations is, on the whole, satisfactory, and the general 
management of the gymnasium is good. Expert advice can be 


obtained by every man who wishes it, and precautions are taken 
to prevent men who are weak or in poor condition from injuring 
themselves in match games or by over exertion. 

In a general way, too, the condition of athletic sports is satis- 
factory. Your Committee are sure that at no time has there been 
a more general participation or a better general tone in college 
sports at Harvard than to-day. The spirit of professionalism, so 
far as it ever existed, has been almost completely wiped out, and 
a properly high amateur standard is maintained. It is customary 
to provide men on teams, during the active training period, with 
necessary athletic clothes and with better food without extra cost, 
but we do not think that any men are paid, either directly or 
indirectly, for their services on teams. 

Yet while general conditions are satisfactory, your Committee 
find that certain dangerous conditions and tendencies exist in 
various degrees in all sports, and while we believe that these 
sports should all be retained, partly because they are essential to 
a general interest in athletics, yet we believe that some games, 
notably foot-ball, should be played between the colleges only 
under careful restrictions. 

Chief among these dangerous conditions is the abnormal interest 
taken in all college contests, not only by the students but by the 
public, and the prominence given these contests by the press, — 
a prominence out of all proportion to their importance. For 
weeks before every important game, the names and faces of all 
the players appear in every newspaper, with detailed accounts of 
their skill ; and after a period of training, during which the boys 
are led to believe that their doings are of real importance to the 
civilized world, they come to the game far more often over- 
wrought mentally by the nervous strain, than over- worked physi- 
cally. The game is then played before an immense audience 
excited to the point of blind partisanship. No boy can fail to 
feel the difference between a game so played, and one played for 
the pure love of sport. The hardest head is likely to be affected 
by the need of winning the applause and support of the audience, 
and the temptation to distort the true purpose of sport into a 
mere struggle for victory is too great. It is no wonder that 
in games of physical contact bad blood is aroused and dishonor- 
able acts sometimes occur ; nor is it strange, with such contests 
keenly in mind, with newspapers seeking to find and publish every 
detail, that there should be difficulty in arranging the conditions 


of the games, and that an undesirable form of diplomacy should 
be developed. 

Love of sport is a good thing in itself, and we cannot blame 
the American people for desiring to see athletic contests, nor 

papers for publishing what people wish to read, but the best 
development, not to say the decent continuation of college sports, 
demands that the spectators, especially at foot-ball games, be 
limited so far as possible to college men, and that the games be 
played only on college grounds. 

The agreement with Yale already requires that games in future 
be played on college grounds, and it is to be hoped that some- 
thing can now be done toward limiting the distribution of tickets 
to graduates only ; while such limitation is not without objections, 
anything which tends to reduce these games to their proper 
position and proportion is valuable. 

The second element of danger lies in the question of gate 
receipts. While there may not be any grave objection to the 
collection of a sum sufficient to defray the necessary expenses of 
the games, yet to play for any financial gain beyond this should 
be repugnant to college men, and the existence of large funds, 
collected by high admission fees, creates a tendency to extrava- 
gance, and offers the possibility of holding out some financial 
consideration to induce men to come to college for athletic purposes. 
While to-day no man is paid or could well be paid either directly 
or indirectly for playing on a team, yet there is constant danger 
that money may be used too freely in making college life agreeable 
and easy to the athlete. We do not deem it practicable to abolish 
gate money altogether, but we believe that much can be done in 
the way of limiting and determining the uses to which it shall be 
put. Your Committee hope that the question will be taken up 
with our chief rivals, and that an agreement may be reached as 
to how far the expenses incident to playing on a team may properly 
be paid and an arrangement made to limit the expense of each team. 
Tt would be our further suggestion that any surplus so saved, or 
otherwise created, be devoted to permanent improvements in the 
college athletic grounds or buildings. Since publicity is the best 
protection against improper use of money, we think it may be desir- 
able to publish in some form the accounts of the graduate treasurer 
for distribution among graduates. 

With these suggestions on general conditions, the question arises 
how best to control and regulate sports where regulation is neces- 


sary, and we naturally are led to consider the constitution and 
practical workings of the body at present charged with that work. 

The Athletic Committee, in its earlier years and original form, 
was constituted primarily to regulate questions arising between the 
Faculty and the students. The need of some* body better con- 
stituted than the Faculty for the regulation of these questions was 
felt, and the Athletic Committee took them up with a great measure 
of success. It has commanded the confidence of the College autho- 
rities, has very properly restricted the number and place of games, 
and regulated wisely the questions in which the teaching depart- 
ment felt that athletics had interfered with the usefulness of the 
College. Moreover, the Committee should be given the greatest 
credit for the improvement which it has effected in the general moral 
tone of athletics throughout the country. The abuses of brutality 
and professionalism, which it was called on to consider, have been 
met with great skill, and Harvard has, beyond doubt, through the 
work of this Committee, very materially improved the standard of 
the men and the quality of sports throughout the college world. 

In 1889 the Athletic Committee was organized in its pres- 
ent form, and, for the original purposes as above outlined, this 
organization proved effective ; but more recently the scope of the 
work of the Committee has very largely changed and increased. 
The net-work of difficult questions which has arisen between the 
various colleges, involving all the sports, as well as a very highly 
strained state of feeling, has brought out the necessity for some 
centralized body which would represent all the sports as well as 
hold the confidence of the authorities, and which would have 
sufficient power to bind men engaged in these sports not only for 
one year, but for a series of years. The Athletic Committee, 
being the only body which fulfilled these requirements in any 
degree, has been drawn into conducting these negotiations. 

Such a work is obviously beyond the original purposes of the 
Committee, and in our opinion ought, under ordinary conditions, 
to be abandoned in future ; yet it has been shown by practical 
experience that it is at times necessary that the Committee should 
conduct certain negotiations and thus avoid the unfortunate petty 
quarrels which otherwise must arise. This action is not only 
necessary from the standpoint of the students, but is also neces- 
sary in the interests of the government of the University in order 
that the restrictions and reforms which are deemed necessary may 
be practically secured by agreement with the other colleges rather 


than by stopping the sports. In our opinion necessary and desir- 
able developments in this direction have shown certain deficiences 
to exist in the organization of the Committee, and lead us to 
make the following suggestions : — 

First. That the undergraduate captains of the chief athletic 
teams should be ex-officio members of the Committee. At present 
the three undergraduate members of the Committee are chosen 
by the presidents of the three upper classes and the captains of 
the principal athletic organizations, who are called together for 
this purpose by the President of the University. 

Captains of teams were excluded because the Committee was 
supposed to pass on their actions and confirm their appointments. 
Practically these objections have not proved considerable, and the 
result of excluding captains has been that the undergraduate 
members have usually attempted to represent the various organiza- 
tions without accurate knowledge. The need of having captains 
on a committee, whose chief function at present is to "pass 
upon" questions which arise between the colleges in arranging 
for the games which the teams are to play, is obvious, and was 
strikingly shown recently when by a mistaken impression of the 
wishes of one captain a proposition was made for an athletic 
event which that captain and his men would have been utterly 
unwilling to carry out. So long as the Athletic Committee sat 
in judgment over the acts of Harvard teams only, it was wise 
to exclude captains, bit since from necessity the Committee has 
assumed to be the central and only real power for all serious 
negotiations with other colleges, it should allow those captains to 
assume their legitimate share in those negotiations. 

Second. That the three graduate members at present appointed 
by the Corporation should be elected by the Overseers. The 
Athletic Committee was founded on the assumption that athletics 
were apart from ordinary affairs of the College, and a matter 
which the Faculty could not well control. Recognizing the im- 
portance of some representation of conservative graduate opinion, 
the Committee was made up equally of graduates, students, and 
faculty members. The Committee has failed to carry out the 
idea thus established, and has largely failed to secure the support 
of the body of graduates interested in athletics, because the 
appointment of both graduate and faculty members lies with the 
Corporation, and it is generally felt that one influence has thus 
controlled the Committee. We do not wish to be understood to 


hold that belief, or to suggest anything which would tend to 
change the wise restrictions which that influence has been largely 
instrumental in creating. At the same time this feeling is so 
general, that, in our opinion, the Committee would command far 
greater support and carry out its original intent more effectively, 
if the graduate representatives were appointed by the body which 
most completely represents the graduates as a whole. 

Third. We would suggest that the Committee either be given 
power to act till their successors are chosen, or that its members 
be chosen earlier so that there may be a full committee during 
the early Fall, when the most serious questions of the year come 
up in connection with foot-ball. Further, to secure a conserva- 
tive policy, it would be wise to appoint the graduate members 
for a term of years. 

As there are four important branches of sport, it has been 
suggested to your Committee that there would be certain advan- 
tages in having the four captains on the Committee, and in 
choosing four graduates and four members of the Faculty instead 
of three, thus increasing the size of the Committee from nine to 
twelve members. 

In conclusion we would urge that to this Committee all ques- 
tions properly within its jurisdiction be referred absolutely, and 
that neither the Faculty nor the Corporation should make any 
regulation or rule, unless under the strongest possible necessity, 
which would interfere with the Committee, or take from the body, 
which can best hear and consider such questions, the decision of 
those questions. 

Looking back over the experience of past years and consider- 
ing the results which have been accomplished, we believe that 
the tone of athletic sports has been improved, and that the rela- 
tions of the University with other universities of the country are 
in a better condition than ever before. We believe that the 
relation between the students and the officers of government and 
instruction, so far as athletic questions are concerned, is excellent, 
and that whatever questions have arisen, or are likely to arise, 
have been and will be satisfactorily settled by the Athletic 

So far as the question of success in athletic sports is concerned, 
the situation is more doubtful. It is impossible, and in fact 
beyond the purposes of your Committee, to analyze causes of 
failure which are in all probability complicated and diverse. It 


cannot be doubted that the stand which Harvard has taken in 
raising the tone of sports has been detrimental to her success, 
and while we believe that it was wise to take such a stand, 
yet we believe that in future the undergraduates, under careful 
general restrictions, ought to be given, so far as possible, a free 
hand in the management of their sports and in the choice of 
their advisers. We cannot agree with the view that failure can 
be ascribed alone to lack of intelligent management and abuses 
of over- training. That there is a tendency in that direction we 
believe, but the abuse has not gone farther at Harvard than at 
other universities, and can hardly have injured us more than 
others. At all events it is certain that no policy of management 
can be successfully or wisely forced on those who are actively 
engaged in the various sports. They must work out their own 
salvation with the aid of such advisers as they may choose and 
believe in. 

April 14, 1897. 


To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : — 

I am unable to join in the recommendations for change in the 
manner of appointing the Athletic Committee. 

That Committee is a part of the administrative machinery of the 
University having charge of a very difficult and important subject, 
and should, I think, — except as to its undergraduate members, — 
be appointed, as other College officers are, by the Corporation and 
confirmed by the Overseers. Inter-collegiate contests need, in my 
opinion, more rather than less restriction than they now have, even 
since the reforms of recent years were introduced, and I think the 
Board of Overseers more likely, by reason of the manner of election 
of its members, to yield to the outside pressure of graduates for 
more games, especially at a distance from Cambridge, than the 
Corporation is. If the Corporation was ever in danger of nomina- 
ting graduates who were too strict in this regard, it is not likely 
to do so now when one of the Fellows has himself served on the 
Athletic Committee and another is generally recognized as the 
warmest friend and patron of rational athletics in any of the Gov- 
erning Boards, or in the whole graduate body ; and I cannot doubt 
that if unsuitable nominations were made the Overseers would reject 
them until proper ones were sent in. 

The appointment or election of administrative officers is not an 
appropriate function for a large elective legislative body, and would, 
in the end, impair the character and usefulness both of the Athletic 
Committee and of the Board of Overseers, besides depriving the 
University and the public of the salutary check of a confirming as 
well as an appointing body. I do not think it would command the 
confidence of the undergraduate body any more than the present 
method does, for I think few if any students distinguish between 
the different boards or know much about them ; and if it would, I 


think that such increased confidence would be purchased at too 
dear a price. Under the conditions of our American life, society, 
and present public opinion, the temptation to an excessive number 
and intensity of intercollegiate contests is practically irresistable 
to undergraduates, individually, as a body, and in their athletic 
organizations, as well as to many, if not most, parents and guard- 
ians ; and rigid control of the subject by the chief executive of 
University government is absolutely essential to the cause of edu- 
cation. I should say the graduate members of the Committee 
had been hitherto sufficiently representative of the better sentiment 
among the graduates, and believe they will continue so, and that 
they should be more, rather than less, restrictive in their tendency 
and inclinations than they now are. 

With regard to the undergraduate members, there would be some 
advantages in having the three principal captains ex-officio members 
if they could be assumed to know and care about track, tennis, 
and other athletic matters, and to be able to sit judicially in mat- 
ters concerning their own and each others' teams in which they 
are petitioners ; but as the Committee has the confirmation and 
rejection of their appointment as captains, and the power and duty 
of removing them for cause, it is difficult to see how they could 
with propriety sit upon the Committee. I am told, also, that they 
have generally declined to serve for lack of time, and that 
they are invited to be present when the interests of their teams 
are concerned. Moreover, if any real progress is to be made 
towards undergraduate self-government and management of inter- 
collegiate athletics, it must be through the students learning to 
select from their own number representative, judicial-minded men 
outside of the teams, and then learning, as a body, to acquiesce 
in and sustain their action. I am told they have done well and 
have improved in this respect hitherto. 

I concur fully in the other recommendations of the Committee, — 
especially the proposed introduction of moderate required gym- 
nastics during the winter months] of the Freshman year, having 
recently seen the system in operation at Brown University, where 
it is required all through college, and having heard there none but 
the most favorable accounts of its working and popularity. A 
^rational and systematic physical training for the great body of 
students who do not and cannot get onto athletic teams seems to me 
the most essential step to take next, and it seems to me as vital and 
fundamental a preparation for the work in life of an educated man 


as English, — and more so than than French or German, — the 
present required Freshman studies. I would give a small credit 
for it — equivalent to a quarter or half course — towards the degree, 
but in addition to the present 18.4 courses, not as a substitute for 
something else within that total. 

Boston, April 9, 1897. 



To the Committee on Physical Training, Athletic Sports, and 
Sanitary Condition of all Buildings : — 

I presume that no one at the present day questions the value 
of a sound mind in a sound body. This desirable possession is 
largely dependent upon a good respiration, good circulation and 
good digestion, and these fundamental bodily functions are greatly 
aided by the practice of some form of physical exercise. 

I shall waste no words, therefore, in setting forth the physio- 
logical value of muscular effort to the brain worker, or in dwelling 
upon the peculiar tendencies of our times that make regular physi- 
cal exercise in a system of education more and more desirable ; but 
I respectfully invite your attention to the consideration of a few 
feasible plans for improving the work of the Department of Physical 
Training at Harvard University. 

As a preliminary step to this consideration, let me review briefly 
the working of the department at Harvard since its inception in 
1880, and also the physical work in a few colleges and universities 
with which Harvard is closely related. 

The Hemenway Gymnasium was first opened January 2, 1880. 
From this time until June of the same year, 625 students were 
examined and given prescriptions of exercise. The approximate 
number using the gymnasium in later years may be inferred from 
table No. 1. As many lockers are held in common by two persons, 
and as many students use the gymnasium who dress in their rooms, 
the exact number that are accustomed to exercise in the gymna- 
sium cannot be ascertained. From a record kept at the gymnasium 
during the winter months of 1895-96, it was found that the average 
attendance was about 700 per day. It will be observed upon 
referring to the table that, although the probable number using the 
gymnasium has increased from year to year, the percentage of 


increase compared with the number of students in College has grad- 
ually decreased since 1886. The building of the Weld Boat House, 
Cary Athletic Building, and the Locker Building at Soldiers' Field, 
as well as the new dormitories now furnished with good bathing 
facilities, may in a measure partly account for the apparent decrease 
in the percentage of the number of students using the gymnasium. 
(See table No. 2.) 

There are at the present time 2929 students connected with the 
University who live in Cambridge and thus have access to the gym- 
nasium. Out of this number, 1810 have had physical examina- 
tions, and 1541 or more are holding lockers at the gymnasium. As 
440 of those now holding lockers have not been examined, this 
makes a total of 2250, or about 73 per cent, of the students in 
the Cambridge departments of the University, who have probably 
attended the gymnasium more or less during the past three years. 
The distribution of the attendance among the different classes and 
departments of the University may be inferred from the following 
list of the lessees of lockers for this College year, up to January 1. 
(See table No 3.) 

In comparing the percentage of those who hold lockers at the 
gymnasium, and those who take books from the University Library, 
it will be observed that the use of the > library increases with the 
age of the student, while attendance at the gymnasium correspond- 
ingly decreases, with the exception, perhaps, of the Law School, 
where the principal reading is done in the department library, and 
the same may be said of the Scientific School students. It will be 
remembered, however, that the use of the library is stimulated 
largely by the extra amount of reading required to meet the 
demands of the various courses. (See table No. 3.) 

The method employed at the Hemenway Gymnasium is as 
follows : — 

Upon entering the University, each student is entitled to an 
examination by the Director, in which his physical proportions are 
measured, his strength tested, his heart and lungs examined, and 
information solicited concerning his general health and inherited 
tendencies. From the data thus procured, a special order of appro- 
priate exercises is made out for each student, with specifications of 
the movements and apparatus which he may best use. These exer- 
cises are marked in outline on cards without charge, or in hand- 
books accompanied by charts at small expense. After working on 


this prescription for three or six months, the student is entitled to 
another examination, by which the results of his work are ascer- 
tained, and the Director enabled to make a further prescription* 
Students holding scholarships are expected to be examined twice a 
year; and those desiring to enter athletic contests are required to 
be examined by the Director and obtain his permission so to do. 

In addition to the individual prescriptions, there are classes in 
Free Movements and Light Gymnastics, designed to afford an 
opportunity for general development to all students of the Univer- 
sity who are not members of the athletic teams, or who are not in 
need of specially prescribed exercises. 

All students of Harvard University desiring to enter as com- 
petitors in athletic contests are required to give evidence of their 
ability by making the following strength tests, in addition to the 
regular physical examinations : — 

Candidates for the University Crew and Foot-Ball Team and 
Weight Throwers are expected to make a total strength test of 
700 points. 

Candidates for the Class Crews and Foot-Ball Teams, and Gym- 
nastic, Wrestling and Sparring Contests, are expected to make 
a total strength test of 600 points. 

Candidates for the University and Class Ball Nines, Lacrosse 
Teams, Track and Field Events, are expected to make a total 
strength test of 500 points. 

These points are reckoned as follows : The number of kilos, 
lifted with the back and legs straight, and the number of kilos, 
lifted with the legs bent, added to the strength of the grip of the 
right and left hand, expiratory power as tested by the manometer, 
and one tenth of the weight in kilos, multiplied by the number of 
times that the person can raise his weight by dipping between 
parallel bars and pulling his weight up to his chin on the rings. 
Where the strength test falls below the desired standard, the 
volumetric capacity of the lungs is taken into account in summing 
up the condition. These tests are made and certificates granted on 
any day, excepting Saturday and Sunday, between 2 and 4 p. m., 
within two weeks previous to a contest ; but no examinations are 
made or certificates granted on the day of the contest. 

In order to stimulate a general interest in developing and strength- 
ening exercises, all of the students examined are now divided into 
groups. Those who make over a thousand points are put in the 


star [*] group ; those who make between 800 and 1000 arepl aced 
in group A; 700 and 800, group B; 600 and 700, C; 500 and 
600, D; 400 and 500, E; 300 and 400, F; 200 and 300, G. 

The 603 students who were examined this College year, up to 
January 1st, were distributed as follows : — 

* 3 D 176 

A 26 E 125 

B 60 F 70 

C 138 G 5 

The numbers of students who have availed themselves of the 
opportunity for physical examinations and prescriptions are given 
in the following table (No. 4). 

The falling off in the number of examinations last year was due 
to the fact that the gymnasium was only opened part of the year, 
on account of the building of the new addition and the making of 
extensive repairs. The examinations for this year are given up to 
January 1 . The total number by July 1 will probably exceed the 
number taken in any previous year. 

The number of certificates given last year to students training 
for athletic contests was as follows (see table No. 5). The above 
table includes in its numbers many who have entered two or three 
different athletic contests during the year, and therefore exceeds the 
number of individuals who were granted certificates. As many 
more, however, are dropped from the teams before they are in 
condition to apply for a certificate, the table gives a fair estimate 
of the number of students in the University who take some regular 
athletic training. 

The individual system combined with the class drills and the 
training for the athletic teams, has worked well enough up to the 
present time to fill all the lockers in the gymnasium and take up all 
of the available space for exercise during the latter part of the 

Since the gymnasium has been worked to its full capacity under 
the present system, the Director has never felt called upon to 
suggest changes or improvements. The new addition with its in- 
creasing facilities and capacity for service has opened up new 
possibilities, and opportunities for improvements now suggest them- 


In reviewing the experiences of the past sixteen years in the light 
of the data before me, the department has every reason to be con- 
gratulated, as the physical condition of the mass of students has 
been greatly improved, both at the time of entering and upon leaving 
the University. There are yet higher ideals to be realized. 

If I may be allowed to offer a few private criticisms upon our 
present methods, I should say that the defects are as follows : — 

1. The tendency to crowd the gymnasium between the hours of 

four and six p.m., on account of the arrangement of the 
hours for lectures and recitations. 

a. This makes it impossible to give expert instruction in 

gymnastics or athletics, 

b. or to get access to the pieces of apparatus prescribed 

for individual development. 

c. It vitiates the air, which should be as pure as it is 

possible to have it in-doors. 

2. The difficulty of arranging for class drills without interfering 

with the individual work, and of allowing the general use 
of the gymnasium without interfering with the class in- 

3. The glorification of athletics and athletes. 

a. If a man fails to get on to the " crew " or the " nine " 

or the "eleven," he sees no further motive for 
training and is likely to lose interest in all forms of 

b. As the number of athletic teams remains about the 

same from year to year, while the number of stu- 
dents is increasing annually, an increasing number 
of students are left without any incentive for syste- 
matic training. 

c. The tendency of the present method of instruction and 

coaching is to mould the best men that can be found 
into athletes, instead of using athletics largely as 
one of the best means of moulding men. 

4. The want of proper respect for physical training as a means 

of developing the whole man. 


a. One class in College is trying to cultivate the highest 

degree of scholarship, and another class is fostering 
extreme athleticism. 

b. Individuals in both classes will be likely to fail in life 

for the want of qualities which the other class 
possessed, yet there is no recognized method in 
College of equalizing these two extremes. 

c. Under the present system, the class that need physical 

training the most get the least, while those who 
need it the least often get more of it than they 
ought to have. 

5. Our present system is defective, inasmuch as it affords no 

means of getting at a considerable body of students, 
neither scholars nor athletes, who need the bracing influ- 
ence of physical discipline. 

a. These men need the same stimulus to physical activity 

that they do to mental activity. 

b. To invite them to exercise for the sake of their health, 

or as a means of physical and mental improvement, 
puts "too much of a strain on their higher motives," 
and they wait for the stimulus of necessity, which 
many of them would be thankful for. 

6. Under our present system a man may attend a course of 

lectures on physiology and hygiene and get credit for it, 
but if he puts the knowledge thus gained into practice, 
and makes regular, systematic and conscientious efforts to 
improve himself, he gets no credit for it whatever, in terms 
by which his frequently less worthy efforts and attainments 
are judged. 

At the present time the interdependence of body and mind is 
recognized by the leading authorities in medical and physical 
science, and efforts are making throughout our schools and colleges 
to put mental and physical training on a rational basis in view of 
improving them both. 

During the past ten years the Harvard Summer School of Physical 
Training has done much in directing the current of thought along 


these lines, having sent out over 700 instructors who are now teach- 
ing what we have taught them in nearly every State in the country. 
Hoav widely the Harvard system of apparatus and Summer School 
method of instruction has been adopted may be inferred from the 
following list (No. 6). 

From this list I have selected some of the leading colleges, in 
order to show their method of bringing the gymnasium work before 
their students. Those marked with the letter H have teachers who 
have attended our Summer School of Physical Training at Harvard, 
or come under the instruction of the Director elsewhere. (See table 
No. 7.) 

The method pursued at some of these institutions, and the results 
realized according to the statements in their catalogues, are worthy 
of careful attention. I take pleasure in quoting from a few of them 
as follows : — 



An introductory or general course of lectures is given each year to 
all Freshmen in the University. 

Gymnasium work and military drill are required fall and spring 
terms of Freshmen and Sophomores. Physical examinations re- 




Military drill and gymnasium work are required of the young men 
of the Freshmen and Sophomore Classes, and of female students of 
the first two years' attendance. 



From November until April each pupil is required to exercise four 
hours a week in the gymnasium. (Graded for each class.) 

For class drill, the Freshmen swing Indian clubs ; the Sopho- 
mores employ dumb-bells ; the Juniors engage in single stick exer- 


cise ; the Seniors use fencing foils, advancing, retreating, thrusting, 
and parrying at the word of command. As a supplement to these 
drills each class is separated into four divisions, which perform 
exercises upon the chest weights, horizontal and parallel bars, and 
other apparatus. The movements executed are graded to correspond 
with the strength and advancement of the several divisions. During 
the Sophomore and Junior years boxing and wrestling are carried on 
in classes. These forms of exercise, carefully conducted, prove to 
be in the highest degree popular and beneficial. The remainder of 
the required four hours per week each student devotes to the fulfil- 
ment of the directions given him on the card made out from the 
measurements taken at the beginning of the year. Each student is 
regularly marked and credited in his gymnasium work, faithfulness 
and punctuality being the test. 



Required work begins December 1 and ends April 15, and occu- 
pies four periods each week. It is arranged in two courses, each 
occupying one season. Students entering the Freshman class are 
required to take the two courses, one each year ; and divisions for 
advanced work are formed of those giving evidence of previous 
systematic gymnasium drill. While the work is required of the two 
lower classes only, it is elective for the upper classes, and it is 
expected that the majority of the members will take advantage of 
the advanced courses arranged. 



director (ivomen). PHYSICAL examinations. 

The young men are required to give three hours each week for 
carrying out the prescription of the Director. 

The sports are under the supervision of the Director. 



In 1889 the Trustees organized the department of Physiology, 
Hygiene and Physical Culture on an equal footing with the other 
departments of the College, making Physical Culture a part of 
the required work of all courses leading to a degree. From 
November 1 to April 1, two hours per week of gymnasium 
work are required of all Freshmen and Sophomores. Physical 

It is not proposed to develope a few record breakers or 
champions in any sport, but to keep all our students in such 
physical condition as will secure to them the best results from 
their college course. The possible evils of competitive sports 
are guarded against so far as possible, and no minor is per- 
mitted to compete in intercollegiate contests without the written 
consent of parent or guardian, a certificate of physical ability 
from the Director, and proper training under his supervision. 
The results of the gymnasium training have been most satisfac- 
tory. The students generally acknowledge that they feel better 
and are able to do more work, and the Faculty testify that there 
have been better results accomplished in the class room since 
the gymnasium was opened. 


The gymnasium is open afternoon and evening ; in all, forty- 
five hours a week. Exercise in it is required of all students 
who are fitted to take it. Class drill with the instructor and 
individual exercise are prescribed. 




A thorough system of physical culture, participated in by all 
the students, who are required to be in the gymnasium at set 
times for class drill. The gymnasium is also open at given 
hours for voluntary work. 



All members of the Freshman class are required to take syste- 
matic exercise three times weekly during six months of the year, 
under the direction of a competent instructor. 


Attendance upon the gymnasium is obligatory upon all matricu- 
lated in the Academic and Biblical Departments, unless excused 
on ground satisfactory to the Chancellor. The gymnasium is 
open to all members of the University for voluntary exercise. 

Credit is given for systematic work in physical training, three 
hours of exercise being equivalent to one hour's work of recita- 
tion. The gymnasium work consists of individual and class 
exercises arranged according to age, strength, and ability of the 
student. It is understood, however, that this hour allowed to 
physical culture shall be counted in addition to, and not as a 
substitute for, the hours already required for a degree. 



Course for teachers ; theory and practice ; counts for full course 
towards diploma. 



Class work in physical culture is required of all undergraduate 
students not excused on account of physical disability, during 
four half hours a week. Six quarters' work in physical culture 
is required of Academic College students, and four quarters of 
University College students. Students taking an excessive number 
of cuts will not be allowed to continue their university work until 
they shall conform to the requirements. Students are given choice 
of hour and course. Courses are offered in prescription work, 
general class drill, and athletic training. Each course is so 


arranged that those who take part in it receive work which tends 
to symmetrical development. 

Periods of exercise — 8.45, 9.45, 10.45, 11.45, a.m; 5.15 p.m. 

Training for any of the University teams will be accepted as 
an equivalent for gymnasium work. 





1. Gymnasium Exercises. One hour, both semesters. Individual 

and class work, with and without apparatus. Open to all 
students under the advice of the Medical Director. One 
hour of credit will be given for systematic prescribed exer- 
cise ; three exercises a week to be taken on separate days, 
arranged according to work of student. 

2. Personal Hygiene. 

3. Sanatory Science. 

4. School Hygiene. 

5. Hygiene of Sex. 

6. General Anatomy and Physiology. 

7. Animal Physiology. 

8. Applied Anatomy and Physiology. 

9. Kinesiology and History of Gymnastics. 

10. Special Gymnasium Training, — includes individual and class 

exercise, use of all kinds of apparatus, calisthenics, light 
and heavy gymnastics, health and medical gymnastics, gym- 
nastic games. Five hours of exercise a week (two hours' 
credit), both semesters. 

11. Anthropometry. 

12. Special courses. 




(women), miss morrison. asst. prof, summers, total, 855. 

1. Gymnasium and Field Practice required in winter term twice 

a week, as part of military science ; one fourth credit 

2. Lectures and Practical Demonstrations. This course is offered 

to students who wish to gain a better comprehension of 
the value of physical exercise, its use and abuse, how to 
train properly for athletic contests, and thus avoid the ill 
effects which too often follow a course of athletic training. 
Course continued during fall and winter terms. Applied 
Anatomy and Physiology of Exercise and Hygiene, once 
a week, fall and winter terms. One fifth study ; for both 
Required University examination in entrance Physiology. 



Mostly professional and graduate departments. 



1. Elementary Course. The seventeen setting-up exercises de- 

scribed in the Drill Regulations of the U. S. A. The use 
of Sargent's developing apparatus explained and illustrated. 
Chest weights, dumb-bells, bar-bells, and Indian clubs. 
Exercise in walking, running ; mattress exercise, parallel 
bars, horizontal bar, etc. Three half hours throughout the 
year. Prescribed to all male undergraduates during the 
first year of their attendance at the University. 

2. Advanced Course. Heavy apparatus. Three half hours through- 

out the year. Prescribed to all undergraduates during the 
second year. 


3. Course for Women. Ten hours throughout the year. Elective 
three half hours for two years. 




Gymnasium work required of Freshmen and Sophomores three 
times a week. 




Harvard System of individual and class work and examinations. 

Regular class work, or individual work for those unable to take 
class work, is given three days a week from the middle of October 
to the first of May. In order to receive credit, there is required, in 
addition to the exercises, either a course of lectures on the care of 
the body, or a course of prescribed reading with written reviews. 
The credit is equal to that of a one-hour recitation once a week, or 
three fifths credit for the year. 



Course similar to that at Harvard, with addition of this require- 
ment : — 

Vote of Corporation, Required that every man who presents 
himself for exercise in the gymnasium, or who desires to use its 
privileges, should first submit to a physical examination by one of 
the Directors ; or, in default of such an examination, should bring 
from his physician a written certificate (the form to be furnished by 
the Directors) that he is physically sound, or a written certificate 
from his parents or guardian that he wishes the student excused 
from the examination, and that he himself will take the responsibility 
of exercising without a previous examination. 

Charge for tub and tank baths. 



Exercise in the gymnasium is required of the men of the Freshman 
and Sophomore classes three hours a week from Thanksgiving to the 
end of the winter term. Elective work in the gymnasium is offered 
to the Junior and Senior classes. 



The Freshmen and the Sophomores are required to attend two 
hours in each week for gymnasium practice ; and class instruction 
is also given throughout the year to such other students as desire 



Gymnastic exercise is required of the Freshmen class during first 
and second terms. 



Regular class work in the gymnasium is required of Freshmen 
and Sophomore classes, one half hour on four days of each week 
from November until April. The class work for the four years is 

1. Dumb-bell exercise, heavy gymnastics, wrestling. Fresh- 

man class. 

2. Dumb-bells, wands, free exercise. Women of Freshman 


3. Indian clubs, boxing. Sophomore class. 

4. Light gymnastics. (Clubs and fancy steps.) 

5. Fencing, single stick. Elective, Junior. 

6. Fencing, broadswords. Elective, Senior. 





During the latter part of the fall and all of the winter term each 
class is required to exercise in the gymnasium under the super- 
vision of the Director. A graded course of class exercise has been 
arranged. (Similar to that at Colby and Bowdoin.) 

Gymnasium for Seniors — optional. 


Gymnasium elective for men. Credit, one fifth of study course 
for year. Gymnasium required for women. 



Two courses, three times a week ; optional. 
Men go to Y. M. C. A. Gymnasium. 



Regular exercise in the gymnasium is required three hours a 
week of men students for the two } 7 ears following entrance, from 
middle of November to the middle of March. The work of 
Physical Training is optional during the remaining years of the 

Graded work, based on individual exercise and class exercise, 
with light and heavy exercise. 




Besides the exercise which every student may take for himself, 
the members of each class exercise together in the gymnasium every 


week day except Saturdays and Wednesdays. Unless excused 
for physical disability, the attendance of every student is required 
at the gymnasium for the performance of the exercise in light 

The results of the system of prescribed gymnasium training 
pursued at the college have been eminently satisfactory. While 
hygienists affirm that as a general rule the health of a young man 
from fifteen to twenty-five years of age is apt to decline, the reverse 
rule is found to prevail with students here. From statistics syste- 
matically kept for more than twenty years, it appears that the health 
of an Amherst College student is likely to grow better each year of 
his collegiate course. The average health of the Sophomore class 
is better than that of the Freshman, and of the Junior better than 
that of the Sophomore, and of the Senior class best of all. This 
average, moreover, is shown to come from the improvement in the 
physical condition of the student, and not from the absence of 
those who drop out of the course because physically too weak to 
complete it. 


Military drill required three hours per week. 
Gymnasium optional. 



First Term. 

1. Lectures of Human Anatomy and Physiology and Personal 

Hygiene. Ten exercises one hour a week. 

First and Second Terms. 

2. A gymnasium exercise of one hour's duration is required on four 

afternoons weekly, from December 1 to April. 



In the conduct of the gymnasium the aim is not so much the 
development of a few gymnasium experts, as the provision of 
wholesome physical exercise for the many. Thus far the work 
has been voluntary. 



For the Classical Section of the Freshman and Sophomore classes, 
attendance at the gymnasium exercises is required four half-hour 
periods weekly throughout the year. 

Graded exercises for both Classes. Bowdoin method. 

Swimming taught in spring-time. 


Course in Physical Training for both sexes, including studies, 
lectures, and exercises. 



Students in the Freshman class of the college are required to 
attend one lecture in Physical Education per week, throughout the 
year. Every student in the class must pass an examination on 
these lectures semi-annually, unless his work has been of sufficient 
merit to warrant exemption. 



A brief course of lectures on human anatomy and physiology, 
illustrated by means of the extensive collections and models of the 
Medical School, and followed by a similar course on personal 
hygiene, is given each class upon entering college. 


The Director of the Gymnasium gives each student a thorough 
medical and physical examination at the beginning of the college 
year. From the measurements and strength tests taken a chart is 
made out for each student, showing his size, strength, and sym- 
metry in comparison with the normal standard, and also what parts 
of the body are defective either in strength or development. At 
the same time the student receives a hand-book containing the exer- 
cises prescribed for the purpose of correcting the physical defects 
shown by his chart, with specific directions in regard to diet and 

During the winter term each class is required to exercise in the 
Sargent Gymnasium, under the supervision of the Director, for a 
half hour on four days of every week. A graded course of class 
exercise has been arranged. The Freshmen have military drill and 
Indian club swinging ; the Sophomores, wrestling and dumb-bell 
exercises ; the Juniors, boxing and fencing with single sticks and 
broadswords ; the Seniors, fencing with foils. For the exercises 
with the chest weights, bars, rings, etc., each class is divided into 
three divisions, and the work is carefully graded to suit the strength 
of each division. 

Physical exercise was required at Princeton from 1869 to within 
a few years ago, when the plan was abandoned on account of the 
meagre accommodations of the gymnasium. 

The University of Pennsylvania has two instructors who received 
their supplemental training at our Summer School, but they have 
only a small gymnasium, and the only requirement that bears upon 
physical training is the attendance of the Freshmen upon a course 
of lectures on Physical Training and Hygiene. 

The students at Columbia have used the city gymnasiums in 
New York until the present time. The change of location on the 
part of the University has made a new gymnasium necessary, and 
a large, finely- appointed structure is now being erected for this 

In view of the influence that Harvard has had in establishing 
gymnasiums and departments of Physical Training in other insti- 
tutions, it would seem to be no more than just that her own 
students should have as good an opportunity to learn of Har- 
vard's better methods in Cambridge, as they would had they 
entered some of the colleges on the Pacific Slope or in the 
adjacent States in New England. 


I regret to add thai under our present regime we cannot give 
the average student anything Like the same quality, quantity, or 
variety of gymnastic work that he can get from our own pupils 
who are teaching in other institutions, simply because the average 
student with us lacks the same incentive to regular systematic 
physical work that is held out to him in other colleges and in 
other departments of instruction in our own University. 

Perhaps it is not altogether desirable that the educational side 
of Physical Training should be advanced at Harvard. If, how- 
ever, the authorities do desire to extend and improve the educa- 
tional side of the subject, I would state that the first step necessary 
is to put the work of the Department of Physical Training on the 
same footing as the other departments of the University. 

All of the arguments in favor of the present system in the depart- 
ments of mental training are equally applicable to the Department of 
Physical Training, while all of the arguments in favor of the present 
system of Physical Training are applicable to those of mental train- 
ing. Justice and equality are what the present situation calls for. 

As a means for advancing the cause of physical education at 
Harvard I would recommend for consideration some of the features 
set forth in the following schemes : 

1. The requirement of a physical examination from every student 
upon entering the undergraduate departments of the College, and 
every year thereafter until the year of graduation ; these examina- 
tions to include the usual tests of health including others to test 
power and working capacity. The moral effect of these examina- 
tions would extend down into the primary and secondary schools 
and work great good to the community. The teacher would soon 
learn that he could not cram his pupils' minds at the expense of 
their health, and the pupils would acquire in early youth the habit 
of keeping themselves in good physical condition. 

The requirement of a physical strength test in addition to the 
usual physical examination of those students who desire to get on 
the athletic teams has raised the standard of the examinations 
passed by the Freshmen very perceptibly within the past two 
years. These tests could easily be graded to meet the conditions 
of advancing age and strength, and are of such a nature as to 
appeal to a young man's pride and manliness. 

This scheme would leave all physical exercise optional, but 
would hold over each student the requirement of an improved 


physical condition from year to year, to be determined by an 
actual test. It is nearer being realized at the present time than 
any other, and all of the athletes and scholarship men are now 
required to be examined, and these form a considerable portion 
of those using the gymnasium. 

This plan could be carried out for an additional expense of $2,500 
a year. This sum would furnish us with another regular instruc- 
tor, and such medical assistance and clerical help as we should 
be obliged to have at certain times during the year. This sum 
would also secure us some service for statistical work of which 
the College should now be able to avail itself for scientific results 
and advertising purposes. 

2. The second plan would be to require physical examinations 
and gymnasium exercise for three hours a week of all the mem- 
bers of the Freshman class ; this work to be supplemented by 
required attendance upon one lecture a week on Physical Train- 
ing and Hygiene throughout the year. The physical exercises 
and lecture to be counted for one half-course towards a degree. 

If the exercises consisted of a single dumb-bell or wand drill 
in which a large number of men could participate at one time, 
and if the classes could come to the gymnasium during the fore- 
noon hours, the work could be handled by the addition of two more 
instructors, at an expense of $2,400.* The same plan could be 
carried out during the afternoon hours if the asphalt area back of 
the gymnasium could be roofed over so as to give us additional 
covered floor space. 

If elective courses were allowed this would require more instruc- 
tors, as the work would be carried on at different parts of the 
gymnasium at the same time. More instructors would also be 
necessary if the class was divided into many sections, so that 
much of the work would have to be repeated at different hours. 
If this work could come during the forenoon, a part of the instruc- 
tion could be hired by the hour, as the services of some of the 
teachers in Boston could be secured at that time. The elective 
courses would require an additional expenditure of at least $3,000, 
depending upon the number of electives allowed. 

3. A third plan would be to have a graded course of physical 

* This estimate does not include the cost of the lectures, as I have presumed 
upon present members of the Faculty being willing to give them. 


exercises extending over four years, in which the regular work of 
the gymnasium, including boxing, fencing, wrestling, single stick, 
swimming, rowing, running, jumping, etc., should be taught to the 
whole College as it is now taught to the members of the Summer 
School. This plan would embrace a broad system of electives, 
and call for a considerable number of instructors. 

I do not see how such a system could be started in the Fresh- 
man year for less than an additional cost to the department of 
$12,000. But after the system was once started a great deal 
of assistance could be rendered by Price G-reenleaf men, and the 
members of the different athletic organizations. This plan would 
enable the University to realize the highest results from the stand- 
point of Physical Training, and solve some of the troublesome 
athletic problems. 

Inasmuch as the alumni, students, and friends of the University 
already expend over $50,000 annually in order to get fifty men in 
condition to participate in a few athletic contests, — presumably 
to show the world at large what Harvard is doing in the way 
of Physical Culture, — it would seem that at least one fourth of 
this sum could be raised annually for giving the mass of students 
who need it some of the physical instruction and training now 
lavished on the favored few. 

In all the plans mentioned I should recommend the giving of 
some sort of credit for faithful attendance and for work actually 
done. This softens the requirement, and does away with the 
sting of punishment for not doing something for which the 
student is given no credit if he does do. 

Wherever the credit system has been introduced it has been 
an admitted success. I enclose a letter from President Hyde, of 
Bowdoin College, bearing upon this point. It will be remembered 
that President Hyde is a graduate of Harvard, and perfectly 
familiar with our present system. (See letter.) 

None of the plans suggested would interfere with the present 
system of voluntary exercises and examinations at the gymnasium, 
except to limit them to certain hours. The present athletic work 
of the students would come under certain restrictions as to time 
and place, and credit for work clone in athletics should be 
accepted as an equivalent for the prescribed work. 

This plan would enable the department to exercise a certain 
amount of supervision over the athletic training of the students, 


as the students who took athletics as an equivalent for gymnastics 
would have to be held accountable for their work. 

The recommendation of some members of the Faculty that a 
certain amount of additional mental work be prescribed with the 
physical exercise, in order to entitle the course to rank towards 
a degree, does not seem to be advisable, except perhaps for the 
Freshman class. The men whom we most desire to reach have 
all the mental work that they can carry and maintain their 
health, while many of the athletic men could be braced up in 
their mental efforts by requiring a higher grade of work in their 
present courses. If, however, a certain rank in studies was 
required in order to have the physical work count towards a 
degree, there would be a possibility of shutting out a few stu- 
dents who do poor work in their studies on account of poor 
health and want of physical vigor. 

Requiring the members of the Freshman class to attend lectures 
on Hygiene and Physical Training would, I think, be an admir- 
able thing, and enable the department to give these new men, at 
the outset of their course, some valuable advice. But if time 
for both could not be given, I have no hesitation in saying that 
applied hygiene, i.e., physical exercise, etc., would be the more 

If physical exercise were prescribed, the rank men, as a class, 
would take the highest stand in these courses at Harvard, as 
they did at Yale when I introduced required gymnasium work 
twenty years ago. In this connection it may be interesting to 
note that the rank men at Harvard during the past sixteen years, 
some 1780 in all, surpass the average student (the average table 
including the athletes) in height, weight and physical strength. 
Curiously enough, the dropped men exceed the rank men in 
height and weight, but fall below them in physical strength. 
This shows conclusively to my mind that the men, as a class, 
who survive the four years' strain of a college course, and come 
to the front on commencement day, must possess more than the 
average physical strength and vigor, and that this is a matter of 
nervous energy and brain power, as well as of bone, muscle, and 
sinew. These are frequently matters of inheritance, but where 
they do not exist I maintain that it is the duty of a college to 
avail itself of every opportunity to improve the condition of the 
body as a fundamental basis for the development and improve- 


ment of the mind. I know of no better way of accomplishing 
this desired object than by making physical and mental training 
a part of the same curriculum, and by rewarding by the same 
method every conscientious and faithful effort towards physical 
and mental improvement. 

D. A. SARGENT, Director. 
Cambridge, Feb. 24, 1897. 


TABLE No. 1. 

Year. Lockers. 

1880 474 

1881 474 

1882 591 

1883 809 

1884 837 

1885 901 

1886 937 

1887 937 

1888 1055 

1889 1055 

1890 1175 

1891 1175 

1892 1333 

1893 1441 

1894 1441 

1895 1447 

1896 1506 

*1897 1544 

* Year not complete. 

TABLE No. 2. 


Year. Per cent. 

1880 45 

1881 44 

1882 53 

1883 69 

1884 69 

1885 • • • 66 

1886 69 

1887 63 

1888 68 

1889 61 

1890 63 

1891 54 

1892 57 

1893 55 

1894 56 

1895 52 

1896 52 


TABLE No. 3. 


Freshmen 273 

Sophomores 287 

Juniors 210 

Seniors 192 

Special 101 


Lawrence Scientific School . 190 

Law School 205 

Divinity School 12 

Graduate School 88 

Medical School 12 

Dental School 4 


sing Gymnasium. 

using Library. 



















TABLE No. 4. 


Year. First Ex. Total Ex. 

1880 579 625 

1881 245 425 

1882 300 545 

1883 278 642 

1884 280 639 

1885 286 773 

1886 287 773 

1887 310 775 

1888 333 877 

1889 .' 338 875 

1890 356 1004 

1891 410 1138 

1892 ! 477 1227 

1893 481 1153 

1894 485 1263 

1895 482 1124 

*1896 377 965 

fl897 473 767 

* Gymnasium undergoing repairs. f Year not complete. 


TABLE No. 5. 


1. University Foot-Ball 68 

2. Class Foot-Ball 121 

3. University Base-Ball 32 

4. Class Base-Ball 62 

5. University Crews 11 

6. Class Crews 32 

7. One Mile Run 27 

8. 880 Yards Run 31 

9. 440 Yards Run 31 

10. 390 Yards Run 25 

11. 290 Yards Run 25 

12. 220 Yards Run 45 

13. 100 Yards Run 51 

14. Low Hurdles 20 

15. High Hurdles 16 

16. One Mile Walk 6 

17. Bicycle 15 

18. Broad Jump 24 

19. High Jump 12 

20. Pole Vault 20 

21. Shot 11 

22. Hammer 11 

23. Fencing 4 

24. Lacrosse 17 

25. Ice Polo 6 

Total 723 

TABLE No. 6. 


Schools and Colleges 263 

Young Men's Christian Associations 310 

Athletic Clubs 72 

Sanitariums, private and miscellaneous 95 

Total 740 

* This table is completed up to 1893. 


TABLE No. 7. 


Brown University, II; Johns Hopkins University, II; Indiana University, 112; 
Vanderbilt University ; University of Illinois, H ; Bowdoin College, II.* 



Dickinson College, H. 


Yale University ; Michigan University, H ; University of Pennsylvania, H2 
University of Virginia, H ; Princeton University. 


Amherst College, H; Bates College, H; Bryn Mawr (prescribed), H; Dart- 
mouth College, H ; Oberlin College, H ; Swarthmore College, H ; University of 
Chicago, H ; Vassar College, H4. 


University of Wisconsin; University of California; University of Kansas, H; 
Lehigh University, H; Wesleyan University, H; f Western Reserve University; 
Colby University, H6 ; Haverford College, H ; Lafayette College ; Trinity Col- 
lege, H2 ; Rutgers College, H2 ; Smith College, H ; Tufts College, H ; Cornell 
University; f Williams College, H; fWellesley College, H. 


Leland Stanford University, H2 ; University of Oregon, H ; Oberlin College, H3. 

* Colleges marked H have gymasium instructors trained at Harvard. 
Required for Freshmen only. 




Bowdoin College, 
Brunswick, Me., March 23, 1896. 

Dear Dr. Sargent, — In reply to your inquiry concerning our 
method of ranking work in the gymnasium, it gives me pleasure to 
report as follows : — 

The work in the gymnasium is counted as one thirteenth of the 
total work of the year. It is required of all students, and is the 
only work except themes required after the Sophomore year. The 
maximum mark is given to all students who attend every exercise. 
Deductions from this maximum mark are made in proportion to the 
number of exercises from which a student is absent. Theoretically 
the instructor has a right to deduct from this maximum work on the 
ground of listless or perfunctory performance of the exercises, but 
as all exercises are under the eye of the instructor, practically no 
such neglect of work is allowed, and consequently there are no de- 
ductions to be made on that score. 

The plan has been in operation ten years ; it works with very little 
friction, is extremely effective, and gives general satisfaction. We 
succeed in requiring every student to take systematic, vigorous exer- 
cise four times a week during the winter months, each of the four 
years. This is partly due to the interesting nature of the exercise. 
Every student learns to spar and to fence, in addition to the usual 
gymnastic exercises. The recognition of it in the rank is a great 
help, however, in making the exercises respected, and securing its 
uniform observance. 

It tends on the whole to raise the rank ; but as this applies to all 
students alike, in proportion to the regularity of their attendance, it 
involves no injustice. In the course of ten years perhaps three or 
four students have escaped being dropped on account of the help 
given to their rank from this source. In these ten years it has been 
necessary once or twice to require a solid block of postponed exer- 
cise to be taken in the spring as a condition of graduation. That, 
however, was in the early days of the requirement, when students 
were disposed to test the question whether the requirement was a 


real one or not. For the past four or five years we have had no 
trouble in maintaining the requirement without resort to penalties of 
any kind. 

Very truly yours, 

(Signed) WM. I). W. HYDE. 


Boston, March 27, 1897. 
Henry W. Putnam, Esq., 

No. 85 Devonshire St., Boston. 

Dear Sir, — I have carefully read Dr. Sargent's interesting report 
with its recommendations for improving the physical work at Harvard, 
and I heartily agree with his opinion that efforts should be made at 
once to induce the rank and file of the student body to give more 
attention to their physical welfare. During my three years of resi- 
dence at Harvard, I felt that there was great need of more systematic 
gymnastic work for the men who are not candidates for athletic 
teams and who take no regular exercise, of course realizing that the 
crowded condition of the gymnasium would not then admit of much 
development in that line. 1 talked with many men at Cambridge on 
this subject, and believe that compulsory gymnastic work would be 
welcomed. It would be subject, of course, to the usual senseless 
objections that follow any innovation. I have heard many times 
remarks by students like this : "I know that I ought to go to the 
gymnasium and intend to do so, but it seems to be such a task to 
change my clothes, and my room seems so much more comfortable, 
that I neglect to take the exercise that I need." 

If the gymnasium work were to count towards a degree, these men 
who believe in it but neglect it would have an incentive that would 
bring them out. Judging from my observations at other colleges 
and schools, I think that violent objections and indifference to re- 
quired physical work are to be expected during its first year. This 
disappears in about two years. It is improbable that two men would 
agree on the details of any plan, but I believe that the adoption of 
any of the schemes of Dr. Sargent, as given, would be a step in 

I would advocate required work during the Freshman year under 
any plan. If I were to choose, for next year's work, between the 


plans presented by Dr. Sargent, I would combine Plans 1 and 2 to 
include the following elements : — 

(a) Requirement of examinations for all students, as given in 
Plan 1. 

(6) Required work for Freshmen, as given in Plan 2. 

(c) Required work for such individuals of other classes as the 
examinations should show to especially need it. 

(d) Allowing (6) and (c) to count for a half course, requiring 
perhaps attendance upon lectures as mentioned by Dr. Sargent. 

(e) During the second year of work under this plan, I would have 
elective work for Sophomores, possibly extending to other classes in 
later years, thus gradually working into Plan 3. 

Natural diffidence keeps many students from entering the gymna- 
sium. This would be overcome by required work during the Fresh- 
man year. The success of Dr. Sargent's afternoon class in drill 
work, attendance upon which is optional and for which no credit is 
given, demonstrates that many students need only opportunity and 
encouragement to induce them to pursue systematic physical training. 

Very truly, 

(Signed) WM. F. GARCELON. 


Indiana University, 

Bloomington, In i). 

My dear Mr. Sargent, — You asked in a letter some time 
ago about the workings of Physical Training here, where it 
counts for a degree. I shall gladly explain the best I can. 
The university system here is one of credits — sixteen full credits 
entitling one to a degree, I believe ; some courses count one 
credit and some less. For three terms' consecutive work in the 
gymnasium one is allowed a three-fifths credit. I am sure that 
this fact induces many to take the work. It is not wholly con- 
fined to the gymnasiums, but if a student can satisfy the instruc- 
tor that he has performed an equivalent amount of regular work 
— say during foot-ball training — it can be substituted for in- 
door work for the time being. This means, of course, that all 
men on the foot-ball field should in some way have regular 
exercise and not spend time on "side lines;" but with some 
planning this can be managed. This substitution of work brought 
into the winter classes in the gymnasium nearly all the foot-ball 
squad, which to my mind was a good thing. 

The idea is to stimulate regular physical exercise of some 
kind. If one likes to work out doors, all right, provided he 
does it with regularity and system and the instructor can be 
satisfied that he does do it. 

Very truly, 

P. S. — Mr. Gonterman will be remembered as one of Harvard's promi- 
nent foot-ball players two or three years ago. D. A. S. 


I am unable to join in the recommendations for change 
in the manner of appointing the Athletic Committee. 

That committee is a part of the adminstrative machinery 
of the University having charge of a very difficult and im- 
portant subject, and should, I think, — except as to its under- 
graduate members, — be appointed, as other college officers 
are, by the corporation and confirmed by the overseers. Inter- 
collegiate contests need, in my opinion, more rather than 
less restriction than they now have, even since the reforms 
of recent years were introduced, and I think the Board of 
Overseers more likely, by reason of the manner of election of 
its members, to yield to the outside pressure of graduates for 
more games, especially at a distance from Cambridge, than 
the corporation is. If the corporation was ever in danger of 
nominating graduates who were too strict in this regard, it is 
not likely to do so now when one of the Fellows has himself 
served on the Athletic Committee and another is generally 
recognized as the warmest friend and patron of rational 
athletics in any of the Governing Boards, or in the whole 
graduate body ; and I cannot doubt that if unsuitable nomi- 
nations were made the overseers would reject them until 
proper ones were sent in. 

The appointment or election of administrative officers is 
not an appropriate function for a large elective legislative 
body, and would, in the end, impair the character and useful 
ness both of the Athletic Committee and of the Board of 
Overseers, besides depriving the University and the public 
of the salutary check of a confirming as well as an appointing 
body. I do not think it would command the confidence of the 
undergraduate body any more than the present method does, 

for I think few if any students distinguish between the dif- 
ferent boards or know much about them ; and if it would, I 
think that such increased confidence would be purchased at 
too dear a price. Under the conditions of our American 
life, society, and present public opinion, the temptation to an 
excessive number and intensity of intercollegiate contests is 
practically irresistible to undergraduates, individually, as a 
body, and in their athletic organizations, as well as to many, 
if not most, parents and guardians ; and rigid control of the 
subject by the chief executive of University government is 
absolutely essential to the cause of education. I should say 
the graduate members of the committee had been hitherto 
sufficiently representative of the better sentiment among the 
graduates, and believe they will continue so, and that they 
should be more, rather than less, restrictive in their ten- 
dency and inclinations than they now are. 

With regard to the undergraduate members, there would 
be some advantages in having the three principal captains 
ex-officio members if they could be assumed to know and care 
about track, tennis, and other athletic matters, and to be able 
to sit judicially in matters concerning their own and each 
others' teams in which they are petitioners ; but as the Com- 
mittee has the confirmation and rejection of their appoint- 
ment as captains, and the power and duty of removing them 
for cause, it is difficult to see how they could with propriety 
sit upon the committee. I am told, also, that they have gen- 
erally declined to serve for lack of time, and that they are 
invited to be present when the interests of their teams are 
concerned. Moreover, if any real progress is to be made 
towards undergraduate self-government and management of 
intercollegiate athletics, it must be through the students 
learning to select from their own number representative, judi- 
cial-minded men outside of the teams, and then learning, as a 
body, to acquiesce in and sustain their action. I am told they 
have done well and have improved in this respect hitherto. 

I concur fully in the other recommendations of the com- 
mittee, — especially the proposed introduction of moderate 
required gymnastics during the winter months of the Fresh- 

man year, having recently seen the system in operation at 
Brown University, where it is required all through college, 
and having heard there none but the most favorable accounts 
of its working and popularity. A rational and systematic 
physical training for the great body of students who do not 
and cannot get onto athletic teams seems to me the most 
essential step to take next, and it seems to me as vital and 
fundamental a preparation for the work in life of an educated 
man as English, — and more so than French or German, — 
the present required Freshman studies. I would give a small 
credit for it — equivalent to a quarter or half course — 
towards the degree, but in addition to the present 18.4 
courses, not as a substitute for something else within that 


Boston, April 9, 1897. 



To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : — 

The Committee to visit the Museum of Comparative Zoology has 
the honor to report that it has met at least once a year in the last six 
years, and at the Museum with the Curator each of five years. 

A majority, often a large majority, of the committee has been 
present at each meeting. 

Several meetings have been held in Boston and efforts have been 
made to raise funds to meet the urgent needs of the Museum, but 
unfortunately without success. During the year just passed, friends, 
pupils, and admirers of Professor Agassiz, independently of this 
Committee, have attempted to secure a sufficient sum of money for 
a memorial to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of the arrival in 
this country of one whose work here has marked an epoch in the 
history of the College and of the country. But the financial troubles 
of the past summer took away every promise of success. 

The sum of $240,000 has been received by the Museum at various 
times from the Commonwealth, and $1,340,000 have been given by 
friends and by the family of Professor Agassiz up to the beginning 
of 1895. 

The endowment fund of $580,000 has not been increased since 
1874, and its income has been materially decreased with the fall in 
rates of interest, so that, with increasing needs, the Museum has 
less means of meeting the greater demands upon it, and cannot 
now even purchase the books and journals needed in its various 

In one of its previous reports, your Committee has detailed the 
various wants of the Museum, which naturally have expanded with 
the accumulation of work and through the greater number of stu- 
dents, so that the present building and opportunities for research 
and instruction are even less adequate than at the time of that 

A larger sum of money for construction, arrangement of specimens, 
etc., and a very much increased permanent income are absolutely 


necessary, if the Museum is to be only kept abreast of the times, 
much more to place it where so important a part of a great university 
belongs, and worthy of its distinguished founder. 

Boston, January 13, 1897. 



To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : — 

The Committee earnestly recommends the establishment of a small 
aquarium in which aquatic animals can be raised and kept for study 
and experimentation. The expenditure of one thousand dollars for 
this purpose would make a very creditable beginning and of immedi- 
ate value to the teaching in this Department. 

The basement of the Museum affords ample room for such a plant, 
which could be so planned that the few aquaria now recommended 
would be a permanent part of any increased equipment of the future. 
The Committee believes that the value of the course in Zoology 
would be greatly enhanced if better facilities for instruction in Physi- 
ology in direct connection with the instruction in Zoology could be 
offered. This subject, however, is one that requires further con- 
sideration and will be more fully discussed in next year's report. 


May 1, 1897. 




The undersigned, having attended lectures in the various courses 

tz ait u n ows e ! artment ' and having c « ** * **£ss 

Although seventy-eight students are this year taking llkUM 

hTe:: r tia h fth woul f d r ve been th ^ u ^ £%**-* 

bel eve that the usefulness of the language and its literary ana phZ 
Jgieal unportance warrant an ampler course of instruction than 

^lltrlTn ItaliM ^ *? ^ *« on at: uah ; 
with the other modern languages here, and consequently the scheme 

is™ ■,:!" rjtc &"■ a r - a ^ 

ttT™^ ? » d »P"»>M« » -total, „I Eo„.„(» p MWo „ „ 


progress, important further in its influence on French, Elizabethan, 
and subsequent literature. The fourth course, bringing the study 
of Italian Literature down to the present, would open to the student 
the thought of Galileo, Vico and Campanella ; it would guide him to 
the best works of Metastasio, Goldoni, Alfieri and Parini ; it would 
unlock for him the ideas of Rosmini ; it would introduce to him the 
chief poets and prose-writers of this century. The fifth course would 
remain, as at present, for beginners. 

The scheme thus briefly outlined could be put in operation by the 
addition of a single course — the fourth — which would be particu- 
larly welcome to students who had passed the elementary course 
successfully and who wished exercise in rapid reading and in higher 
composition. This addition would also permit such modifications 
in the existing advanced courses as would bring each into logical, 
organic relations with the others. There are several important 
branches of knowledge in which contemporary Italians have pro- 
duced works of recognized authority. The student of psychology, 
for instance, cannot afford to ignore the writings of Lombroso, 
Mantegazza, Ferrero, Morselli, and others ; the political economist 
needs to know the theories of a school of Italian economists ; the 
specialists in folk-lore and in the recent criticism of art must turn to 
De G-ubernatis and Pitre, or to Morelli (although the latter wrote also 
in German), if they would be abreast of the times in those subjects ; 
and students of recent European history and diplomacy can reach 
much significant material only through Italian. The facility acquired 
in the course just described would give American students access to 
all these sources. Moreover, such a course, with the readjustment 
of the entire scheme of instruction in Italian, would raise this lan- 
guage to the position it deserves. 

In looking over the Elective Pamphlet we rejoice to see that 
Harvard offers three courses in Assyrian, one in Ethiopic, one in 
Phoenician, and one in Babylonian Bilingual Hymns ; such pro- 
fusion of instruction in recondite subjects befits a great university. 
But does not the apparent neglect to put Italian on a proper foot- 
ing throw discredit on Harvard? Earnest students have a right to 
infer that the authorities hold this language in disesteem when they 
read in the Elective Pamphlet the notice that " Italian 1 and Spanish 
1 cannot be taken in the same year." It is conceivable that a high- 
grade student might wish to pursue Italian and Spanish simulta- 
neously ; why should the authorities imply that in so doing he would 
waste his time? If Italian 1 and Spanish 1 are "soft" courses, the 
remedy should be to make them harder, not to cast suspicion on the 


value of those languages. Any student can take Ethiopic 1 and 
Phoenician 1 in the same year ; why should not the University raise 
Italian and Spanish to a similar level of dignity ? If the elementary 
courses have proved for some students a time of repose before going 
forth to the activities of polo and golf, the blame should not be laid 
on Italian. This language should enjoy equal repute with French or 
German, although for obvious reasons the number of students who 
elect Italian will always fall short of the number electing German 
and French. But it is the duty of a university to keep whatever 
courses it offers at the university standard. 

Accordingly, we suggest that the scheme of instruction in Italian 
be amplified. The new course we recommend would require another 
instructor, but we believe that more students will elect Italian in 
proportion as the authorities make it plain, by laying out a well- 
rounded, logically-progressive curriculum, that they regard the Italian 
language and literature as worthy of the best efforts of serious 
scholars. To do less than this would be to acknowledge that at 
least in one branch of learning Harvard has accepted an imperfect 
and unsystematical plan as sufficient. 

In conclusion, we would report that much can be done to foster the 
Italian Department, and the study of Romance Languages in gen- 
eral, by building up the Department's library. Like some of its 
more favored neighbors, it ought to have a permanent fund : lacking 
this, it appeals for gifts of money or of books, and the good use 
already made of its limited resources indicates that such gifts would 
be well bestowed. 

Respectfully submitted, 




Cambridge, April 20, 1897. 




in tSTS™ : ~ ^ PUrSUanCe ° f tte general ^tructions laid down 
m your communication to us, we have held a conference with the 

t !" g , at " re 1D the C ° lle § e - We g^ered from their 

reports that the changes Produced year before last looW to a 
diminution of energy in general lecturing, and an increase in spedfic 
dass room work had tended to give more precision to the training t 

fhJ i 7 : The ° Pini0n WM freel y -P— ed, howeve 
that the best results could not be looked for until th e students who 

hTw ft ft 0W6r SCh °° 1S ^ a ^ g6 ~ «4^h 
the best English literature as a ground-work for specific edification 

The most interesting single movement in the Department wh^h 

we d IS covered was that which had for its object the provision of a 

departmental library. Snch a library had been slowtyZh ig in 

eo fTchxl ^^t WlthSPeCiaI W ^ the late » " 
lessor F. J. Child. His death naturally led his associates to raise 

some monument to his memory which shonld be fit, and should ca n v 

«iir^ e the r UenCe ° f MS - We -- - a teacher 
ot literature No memorial seemed more satisfactory than the ner 

manent establishment of the department's library. According y "an 

invitation was given to Professor Chxld's former pupils aSnds 

imested by the college, and its income devoted to the purchase of 
books to be in the custody of the librarian, bnt specially It a pa r 

The response to this invitation has been immediate and onerous 

. g ; : a ZL acco 77 ing subscripti ° M and *** h -~ e 

has been I 7 ^ ^ lwe tt * tWs ** — 

Has been and continues to be held by his pupils. We think it „ 

most happy inauguration of this usefuf libra^ that ft iff ^ 

CoZe fn WWCh ° an n6Ver bC lMt ° Ut ° f ^ ~T o 
the College. It needs no argument to demonstrate the great service 


which such a library must render to the department. With the 
growth of the university and the absence of domiciliary divisions, it 
is reasonably clear that the grouping of students will be largely on 
lines of research. The Department of English, like the other great 
departments in the humanities and science, tends to a certain inde- 
pendent crystallization, and it needs and should have if not a house 
of its own, such quarters as will enable it to concentrate its energies 
to the best advantage. With a well-equipped library for its exclu- 
sive use, not only will the officers of instruction be able to carry 
forward their own researches, indispensable to the enlargement and 
enrichment of the University as a station of light in the national life, 
but the students under them will learn by the free use of the library 
one of the higher arts of individual life which the University must 
foster, even when it cannot directly impart it. 

We hope sincerely that the government of the University will 
second heartily the action of the Department in this particular by 
making it possible to put the collection of books in the Child Memo- 
rial into suitable quarters, and to provide for its care. 





Boston, 2 April 1897. 


Hon. Charles Francis Adams, Chairman. 

Dear Sir, — With the consent of the chairman of the English 
Committee, I add the following note to the report of the chair- 
man, which I have signed : — 

In returning to the work of the visiting committees after an ab- 
sence of some years, I notice a change of opinion upon one point, 
about which I think there should be a clear understanding. A doubt 
seems now to exist among both visitors and instructors whether it is 
desirable for the Visiting Committee actually to visit the classes. 
Although its name would indicate this duty, there seems an impres- 
sion that its functions lie in some other direction than personal 
inspection. This view evidently varies, however, in the different 


departments. In the Italian department, to which I am also 
assigned, the classes have been freely visited and apparently with 
mutual satisfaction ; a meeting being afterwards held at which every 
visitor and every instructor was present and consultations of mutual 
value were held, as the report of the committee will show. 

When the English department, on the other hand, met with the 
visitors, the opinion was freely expressed both by the head of the 
department and by the chairman of the Visiting Committee that it 
was no longer desirable, even if practicable, that the classes should 
be personally visited. This was afterwards modified by the head of 
this department to this extent, that he thought visits ' ' made often 
enough " might perhaps be of some value. When asked what he 
would consider often enough, he stated the minimum number at 
six visits to each course. As he stated the number of courses in 
English to be 30, this would be practically prohibitive. 

From this view of the subject I wish respectfully but very decidedly 
to dissent, for the following reasons : — 

First, because the primary object of visiting the classes is not 
criticism upon instructors, but to afford to the visitors that knowl- 
edge of the general aim and plan of a course which can never be 
obtained by the study of programmes alone. Fifteen minutes spent 
in the recitation room are worth more, for this purpose, than learning 
the whole programme by heart. 

Second, because for an observer with any educational experience a 
single visit to a class room may be of very great value even for judg- 
ing of the methods and characteristics of a teacher. No one will deny 
that a single visit may afford the ground for a most favorable impres- 
sion of the qualities, methods and manners of a teacher ; and, if this 
is so, a single visit may also afford the ground for an unfavorable im- 
pression. In military service an inspecting officer is expected to 
report on the condition of a regiment of a thousand men upon a 
single inspection, lasting but a few hours, and if he is competent 
and experienced he can do this satisfactorily. Granting that in the 
purely intellectual sphere such judgments are more difficult to form, 
it seems to me an obvious mistake to say that they are valueless 
unless repeated with such extreme frequency. I have personally 
visited several of the courses in English and have been received 
with uniform courtesy, but I should prefer not again to be placed 
upon the committee if its functions are to be limited in the manner 
suggested by the head of the department. 

I will go farther and add that it seems to me peculiarly undesirable 
that this practical prohibition of visiting should exist in the English 


department. Every resident of Cambridge knows the existence of a 
widely spread impression that the English department, while strong 
in the direction of grammar and philology and in the training of 
careful writers, is not equally strong in creating the love of litera- 
ture as such and an enthusiasm for the best models. In this respect 
the loss of Professor Child is greatly felt. This opinion may be wholly 
unjust, but it unquestionably exists in the community outside, and I 
have heard it strongly expressed by graduate students. It seems to 
me that nothing could so far contribute to the removal of such an im- 
pression if unfounded — or of its source if there is any foundation 
for it — as the observation of a capable visiting committee. 

Respectfully yours, 


Cambridge. April 23, 1897. 



To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : — 

The teaching of a foreign language is always a question of much 
difficulty. Two different demands are made on the instructors by 
the fact that students take French with totally different intentions. 
Many do not expect to visit France, but desire to acquire a thorough 
knowledge of the literature of the country which includes, if it is to 
be thorough, some knowledge of mediaeval language and literature. 
But there are a body of students who take the course for practical 
reasons only, a desire to be able to speak and understand the 
language sufficiently to get along if they find themselves in a French 
speaking country. This requires also the power of writing the 
language with grammatical correctness. 

The first part, viz., the study of French literature, can be car- 
ried on successfully in Harvard, and as far as the Committee could 
judge by personal attendance to the classes under Professor 
de Sumichrast and others is done conscientiously and with success. 
The second part is much more difficult. French is a language 
which is perhaps the easiest of any European tongue to acquire to 
a moderate extent, but to be able to speak and write the language 
really well is of such extreme difficulty that hardly any foreigner 
succeeds in mastering it. During many years residence in France 
the members of your Committee could easily count on their fingers 
the Americans who have succeeded in either writing or speaking 
French perfectly. It would be entirely impossible to give any stu- 
dent in Harvard this power. We must therefore content ourselves 
with teaching the rudiments of the language, leaving to after years, 
and a residence abroad, any attempt to reach a mastery of the many 
nuances and delicacies of the French tongue. So difficult is this 
that the French government publish a book to inform the employes 
how they should address the gentlemen occupying official positions. 
It is the same with letters where the degree of familiarity which may 
exist between the writers, the age of the persons to whom letters are 
written, their social position, etc., etc., are all indicated by nuances 
of expression. 


Your Committee, two of whom have been several years on the 
Visiting Board, have had occasion many times by hearing classes, or 
by conversation with teachers to judge of the condition of French 
teaching in Harvard, and they agree that it is eminently satisfactory. 
The only suggestion they would make is that in any future increase 
in the number of professors, still more attention should be paid to 
the elementary classes, those which teach talking, writing, and 
understanding the spoken language, and that the classes should be 
kept very small, as it is only by perpetual repetition and practice 
that anything can be accomplished, and twenty students are really 
more than an able instructor can really teach. Classes in literature 
can of course be much larger as they are for the most part lectures. 


The courses in the Department are divided into three groups : 
Primarily for Undergraduates ; for Graduates and Undergraduates ; 
Primarily for Graduates. 

The first group comprises the Elementary courses properly so 
called, A, 17>, lc, la, 2c, 2a, 3, 4 and 5. Course A is intended for 
men who have not before studied French and is prescribed for Fresh- 
men who have not presented French at the Admission examination. 
The number of such Freshmen this year is 35. The greater number 
of Freshmeii present at least Elementary French at the entrance 
examination. The total number of men in the course is 116. Of 
these 29 are Special Students, 34 are Scientific Students for whom 
the course is also prescribed by the authorities of the Lawrence 
Scientific School. Five are Graduate students who have been re- 
quired by the Committe on Admission from other Colleges to take 
the course in view of their never having studied the language. 

The course is taught in sections, the numbers in these being 25. 
33, 32, 26. Each section has three recitations a week. The course 
is in charge of Mr. C. H. C. Wright who is assisted by Mr. La 

Course lb comprises 108 men. It is especially intended for stu- 
dents who desire to acquire a reading knowledge of French but who 
do not intend to pursue the study of the language further. It is pre- 
scribed for students in the Scientific School who take a second year 
of the language. 

The course is taught in three sections numbering respectively 49, 
36, 23 students. It is in charge of Mr. Irving Babbit, assisted by 
Mr. J. D. M. Ford. Each section recites three times a week. 


Courses lc and la arc parallel courses and the work done is the 
same in both. In lc, which is intended for men who have had no 
previous opportunity of hearing French spoken, English is used more 
largely at the beginning of the year, but by mid-year both sections 
are taught in French. 

Course lc is taught in one section by Mr. La Meslee, who has 
33 students. Course la, in charge of Professor de Sumichrast, 
assisted by Mr. I. Babbitt, is divided into two sections containing 
respectively 47 and 28 students. 

Course 2c is in charge of Dr. Marcou, assisted by Mr. J. D. M. 
Ford. It numbers 140 men and is divided into four sections, com- 
prising respectively 48, 48, 17, and 27 students. All these sections, 
as well as those in lc and la, recite three times a week. 

Course 2a is in charge of Mr. Wright and is divided into three 
sections containing respectively 32, 39, 33 men. These sections 
also recite three times a week. 

Courses 3, 4 and 5 are courses intended primarily for the study of 
French by the conversational method and the acquisition of the 
power of speaking and writing French is the main object of the 
students in the course. 

These three courses are in the charge of Mr. Brun, assisted in 
Course 3 by Mr. La Meslee, and are divided into sections reciting 
twice a week. 

Course 3 is divided into four sections of 22, 15, 16 and 14 men. 

Course 4 is divided into three sections of 21, 22 and 22 men. 

Course 5 is taught in one section of 15 men. 

The second group of courses comprises 6c and 6, which are intro- 
ductory to the detailed study of literature. The object of these two 
courses, of which Qc is taught in English and 6 in French, is to give 
the students a knowledge of the history of literature in France. 
Much reading and some composition are required of the men. 

Course 6c being more in the nature of a recitation course cannot 
be taught satisfactorily if the number of students in any one section 
of it exceed 50. This being the first year in w r hich it has been given, 
the number of men attending it has not rendered a second section 
necessary, but it is probable that the number of students taking it 
will grow rapidly and in that case a second, and possibly a third, 
section will have to be formed. 

Course 6 is a lecture course and the number of students is no 

Professor Grandgent gives 6c and Professor de Sumichrast 6. 
Each course meets three times a week. 


The numbers given in the various courses is that in attendance at 
mid-year. The numbers in every course were greater at the beginning 
of the year, but were reduced through various causes, such as diffi- 
culty of courses, excusions on account of neglect of work or with- 
drawal on account of conflicts or excessive number of courses 

In conclusion we would say that those professors whom we had 
the pleasure of meeting seemed most able and conscientious, and the 
instruction in every department very creditable. A small sum to 
increase the French library is very desirable because the books 
used are often expensive and the students cannot often afford to 
buy them. There is now a library but it is too small, and should 
contain duplicates of many of the works used in modern and 
mediaeval literature. 

Respectfully submitted, . 








First, as to Instruction : During the past year two courses have 
been given. Course 1 covers the general subject of Anthropology, 
including Somatology, Archaeology, Ethnology, and Ethnography. 
This course, while primarily for graduates, was open to undergradu- 
ates by permission. There were two graduates and one undergraduate 
in this course. In Course 20, which has been known as the Research 
Course for graduates, there were two graduates and two undergradu- 
ates by special permission, these two undergraduates being Seniors 
who had taken Course 1 in the preceding year. 

Course 1 is open to undergraduates, and a special course is given 
in Physical Anthropology. Course 20a covers advanced work in 
American Archaeology and Ethnology, and is intended for graduates 
who have taken Course 1 or its equivalent. Course 206 is an ad- 
vanced course given to special work in Somatology. 

A regular instructor in Anthropology has been appointed, and he 
will have an assistant during the coming year. 

Thus there has been a gradual but marked development in the 
instruction in this Division of the University since it was estab- 
lished in 1890. During all this time the expenses of instruction 
have been borne by the Museum and its friends, with the exception 
of one appropriation of $250 received from the College during the 
past year. The Museum has also given up one of its halls for the 
purposes of instruction in this Division of the University. This 
hall has been provided with cases in which are kept the books con- 
stituting the students' reference library ; also a collection of speci- 
mens which is being gradually formed for the special use of the 

There are five important matters to which the Committee wish to 
call attention. First, the necessity of providing for the salary of an 
Assistant Curator, and also for the salary of assistants in the work 
of the Museum. Second, the completion of the building, in order 
that the large amount of material now in storage may be properly 


arranged. Third, the establishment of a publication fund, that the 
many researches made under the auspices of the Museum may be 
published. Fourth, the securing means for the continuation of 
researches in the field. Fifth, the establishment of a fund, the 
income to be used for purposes of instruction. 

For the Committee, 

May 25, 1897. 





To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : — 

The undersigned members of the Committee appointed to visit the 
Jefferson Physical Laboratory and Department of Physics, having 
attended a duly notified meeting at the laboratory building on May 
12, 1897, have the honor to report as follows : — 

During the past year, the Director and his associates have made 
many original investigations, the published results of which have 
added much to the already world-wide reputation of the Jefferson 
Physical Laboratory as a centre of physical research. The most 
noteworthy of these investigations is that of the Director on ' ' The 
energy conditions necessary to produce the Rontgen Rays." In 
connection with this investigation there has been used a storage 
battery of 10,000 cells, or five times the number of cells in any 
similar battery heretofore used. The Committee note with pleasure 
that this battery has been designed, constructed and installed by the 
laboratory staff, at a very moderate expense ; and that it promises to 
yield results of great value in some of the most important branches 
of electrical science. 

The routine work of laboratory and class room instruction has been 
kept to its usual high standard of efficiency. 

During their inspection of the laboratory building and grounds, the 
Committee noted a "grand stand" of steel recently erected upon 
Holmes Field, within one hundred feet of the west wing ; and they 
were informed by the Director that this mass of magnetic material 
has caused a most vexatious variable disturbance in magnetometer 
records of the "horizontal intensity" component of the earth's 
magnetism. Having regard to the fact that in the construction of 
the laboratory building a very considerable expenditure was made 
for the exclusion of magnetic material from the west wing, it seems 
almost incredible that the Administration of the University should 
permit its purpose to be frustrated by a structure which is a mere 
accessory to the game of base ball and other athletic sports. 

From year to year, the Committee are impressed with the fact that 


it is most desirable that the annual income of the Department of 
Physics should be large enough to permit such a staff organization 
as would allow the Director and several of his associates to devote 
themselves exclusively to the original investigations for which they 
are fitted by reason of their zeal and ability and their magnificent 
laboratory surroundings. 

May 13, 1897. 

Note. — It was stated to the Board by the President of the University that 
the steel stands were intended to be placed on the Soldiers Field, and that they 
were only placed temporarily on Holmes Field at the request of the Athletic 
Committee, and that the stands are to be removed. 



To the Board of Overseers of Harvard College : — 

In dealing with the question of College English, or the advanced 
education in writing, a serious difficulty is met with at the outset, 
from the lack of an accepted basis of comparison between the present 
and the past. The believers in the ancient methods and their results 
are always numerous ; nor is it easy to decide whether they are right 
or wrong in their assertions, so long as the evidence of results 
actually achieved through what are commonly described as ' ' the 
good old ways," and of the condition of affairs which really prevailed 
in past times, rests almost wholly on memory and tradition. How 
deceptive impressions so based are, is seen in the familiar instances 
of the weather and longevity. Exceptional storms or seasons, 
or cases of extreme old age, linger in the popular memory, and, 
in the absence of the records of a weather bureau or of statistics 
of vitality, are generalized into "old-fashioned winters" and a 
patriarchal tenure of life wholly unlike the present. So as respects 
the traditions of College English ; individual instances in the past, 
which examination would probably show to be quite exceptional, have 
left an impression ; and, in the absence of any record, or reliable 
basis of comparison, these exceptional cases are referred to in dis- 
cussion as if they represented the average standard of their time. 

In examining the written work now done, and the results attained, 
and pronouncing upon it and them, not only so far as the Academic 
Department of any University is concerned, but also in the institu- 
tions of Secondary Education, it would, therefore, be of the utmost 
assistance if visitor or instructor could turn from the papers of the 
present year to a collection of similar papers prepared under the 
methods in use in 1850, and again in 1800. Such a direct com- 
parison, did the data exist, besides being of interest in itself, could 
hardly fail to set at rest several now much controverted questions. 

Feeling at every step of their investigations the need of some such 
data of comparison the Committee on Composition and Rhetoric 
thought it would be wise in any event to make provision for the 
future in this respect. Accordingly, after consultation with the in- 
structors of the Department, the following subject for a written 


composition was prepared, and given out to all the students in 
the several English courses. The preparation of the paper was 
necessarily optional with the students, as it could not be treated as a 
regular exercise, nor count in the prescribed college work. In calling 
for the paper, the instructors explained the object for which it was 
desired, and the students understood that they were to prepare it at 
such times and with such care as they saw fit. 

The subject was as follows : — "Describe the training you received, 
or the experience you may have had, in writing English before enter- 
ing College, giving the names of the schools in which, or the instruc- 
tors from whom, you received it ; and then, speaking in the light of 
your subsequent work and experience in College, point out wherein 
your preparatory training now seems to you to have been good and 
sufficient, and wherein it seems to have been defective and to admit 
of improvement." 

This subject was given out in the latter part of November, 1896 ; 
and the papers upon it were handed in during December. They 
were, from the College proper, 1170 in number, the following table 
showing the courses, the full number of students in each course, 
and the number of those who actually filed papers : — 

Name of Course. 

Number of Students Number 

in Course. who wrote. 

English^ 562 467 

English^ 91 64 

English 22 312 278 

English C 450 163 

English 5 16 15 

English 12 90 71 

English 31 130 112 

Total 1651 1170 

Sixty-eight (68) students of the Lawrence Scientific School, and 
seventy (70) of Radcliffe College also handed in papers ; making the 
aggregate number 1308. In the College proper, papers were received 
from 70 per cent, of the students in the several courses. All of the 
papers were, when received, at once packed up and forwarded to the 
Committee without examination, or with only a very cursory examin- 
ation, on the part of the instructors. 

Before considering these papers as a whole, or attempting to draw 
any general conclusions from them as a body of evidence, it is 
necessary as matter of record, and for the information of those 
unacquainted with the Harvard College system now in use, to explain 
briefly the scope of each course, and to summarize the papers filed 
by the students taking it. 


Course A. 

This course is prescribed for Freshmen, and for first-year students 
in the Lawrence Scientific School. Being an elementary course, it 
may be, and not infrequently is, anticipated by the more intelligent 
students or those from the better preparatory schools. Papers were 
handed in by eighty-three (83) per cent, of the total number of those 
taking the course. These papers may, therefore, as a whole be taken 
as a sufficient representation of it ; though it would not be unfair to 
assume that the seventeen (17) per cent, who failed to hand in state- 
ments were probably not among the best equipped. Taking the 
students who enter college annually as a whole, it might, therefore, 
be not unreasonable to consider those in the course thus unrepresented 
by papers as an offset to those who had anticipated the course. The 
papers filed would in this way constitute a fair average Freshman 

The most noticeable feature in these papers, taken as a whole, is 
their extreme crudeness both of thought and execution. Indeed, the 
first impression derived from a cursory examination of the two large 
volumes (I and II) of the originals would probably be one of surprise 
that such a degree of immaturity should exist in a body of young 
men averaging nineteen years of age, coming from the best prepara- 
tory schools in America, and belonging to the most well-to-do and 
highly educated families. Some 60 out of the 467 papers showed 
clearly that the writers, from deficiency in purely elementary training, 
were not prepared to go on profitably in a college course. They 
might be able to read ; they certainly could not write. The remainder 
were, so far as the faculty of written expression was concerned, fitted 
to pursue a college course advantageously ; but, as a rule, their 
papers revealed other defects in the S3 T stems in use in the schools 
from which they came, which will be hereafter more particularly 
referred to. 

Course B. 

This course is prescribed for Sophomores who, having passed in 
Course A, take neither Course 31 nor Course 22. It is open to those 
students only who have passed in Course A. Courses B, 31 and 22 
are on the same footing, but those take B who do not care to follow 
English composition or wish to do no more in it than is prescribed. 

Of the 91 students taking this course, 64, or 70 per cent, of the whole, 
a fairly representative number handed in papers. These papers show 
in a marked way the effect on the writers of the work done in Course A, 
though the deficiency in earlier elementary training is still apparent 
in the unduly numerous examples of bad penmanship and incorrect 


spelling. The average attained is about that which under other and 
more intelligent systems might reasonably be looked for from scholars 
of eighteen years. In other respects the papers in this course (Vol. 
Ill) afford merely cumulative evidence as to the preparatory school 
methods indicated by the papers in Course A. 

Course C. 

This Course is prescribed for Juniors who, having passed in 
Courses B, 31 or 22, do not take Course 30. It is open to those 
students only who have passed in Course B, 31 or 22. 

Of the students taking this course, practically one for the Junior 
year, 163 out of a total number of 450 filed papers, or only 36 per 
cent, of the whole. Not improbably this deficiency was in large 
degree due to the fact that a subject almost exactly. similar had already 
been assigned for a paper to be prepared in the regular course ; and, 
naturally, a large proportion of the students did not care to pre- 
pare two papers at the same time on one subject. Meanwhile the 
papers filed (Vol. VII), while, perhaps, not to be accepted as a fair 
example of the whole, were most noticeable for their improvement 
over those of the earlier courses, and, indeed, for their general 
intrinsic excellence. Not over one in twenty certainty, or less than 
five (5) per cent, of the whole, were open to criticism on grounds of 
bad penmanship, defective punctuation, or lack of good grammatical 
expression. The average age of the writers was about 21 years, 
and the work is satisfactory as indicating a sufficient proficiency in 
written English for every practical purpose in life. The papers 
speak for themselves, and reflect credit on the excellent work done 
in the English department of the College. Moreover many of them 
are highly suggestive, coming as they do from young men of more 
mature mind and larger experience. The writers almost uniformily 
express a decided judgment that the instruction given in the pre- 
paratory schools in written English is inadequate, and that Course A 
belongs properly to the Secondary Education. It may indeed be said 
that not one of these papers which shows any degree of capachyy in 
the writer, fails to express this opinion. 

These papers also reveal in a striking, because almost always 
unconscious, way, what has heretofore been the great defect in the 
methods of instruction in written English in vogue in the common 
preparatory schools. It has been taught almost wholly objectively, 
or as an end ; almost never incidentally, and as a means. This 
will be referred to more fully later on in this report, and is merely 
alluded to now in connection with these papers from Course C. In 
the great majority of the preparatory schools, English is still taught, 


it would seem, not as a mother tongue, but as a foreign literature. 
The reason is obvious. Formerly English was not taught in these 
schools at all. It was supposed to be picked up incidentally, as it 
were, and by the wayside, in pursuing the beaten path of classical 
drill. Then it was by degrees introduced as a new college require- 
ment ; and, almost as a matter of course, the masters, following 
the instincts of analogy, taught the new language required as they 
were in the custom of teaching the old, — English was taught not 
incidentally and in connection with other studies, but independently, 
and as Latin and Greek were taught, through the analytical reading, 
or perhaps rather the spelling out, of writings of certain specified 
authors, and by exercises in so-called " composition," at stated times. 
The results of this method are pointed out in the papers of Course (7, 
and can be studied in those of Course A. 

Courses 22 and 31. 

These two courses should properly be considered together, as 
Course 31 is practically but the second division of Course 22. 

Course 22 is counted as the equivalent of Course _B, but as an 
elective it is open only to those who in Course A have attained the 
Grade G; while Course 31 is open to all who, having passed Coursed, 
with any sufficient grade, prefer an elective to Course B. Courses 
22 and 31, while in some respects equivalent to Course .B, are 
intermediate between Courses A and G and are to a large extent 
Sophomore courses. 

From Course 22, ninety (90) per cent, of the students handed in 
papers, and eighty-six (86) per cent, from Course 31. They may 
probably be taken as fairly representative. Of these papers about 
ten (10) per cent, in Course 22, and fifteen (15) per cent, in 
Course 31 are below the proper standard both in thought and in 
mechanical execution. They show that in these respects, and to 
this degree, the college instruction had not yet made good the 
deficiency in the elementary drill in the preparatory schools. If 
examples of slovenly school-boy scrawls, which would disqualify 
the writer for employment in any counting-house or office, were 
needed, they could easily be furnished in fac-simile from the papers 
on file (Vols. IV, V, VI) in these two courses. 

Certain of these papers are suggestive in one important respect. 
They were written by graduates of Normal Schools. Teachers from 
those schools should appreciate the necessity of early training in 
written English, for it is their especial mission to impart it to 
others at the most impressionable period of life. They should, 
therefore, in their work give evidence of severe, mechanical, ele- 


mentary drill, received in the Normal Schools. They ought them- 
selves to be writing-masters. The indications are, however, that the 
Normal school standard is in this respect unduly low, and that our 
teachers need themselves to be taught. (Appendix Nos. 1 and 2.) 

Course 12. 

This Course is open to those only who have attained Grade C in 
Course B, 22 or 31, already referred to. Those composing it are 
chiefly Juniors or Seniors, though among them are some Sophomores 
and a few students from the Lawrence Scientific School, Special 
Students and Resident Graduates. Of the 90 taking the Course, 
71, or eighty (80) per cent, submitted papers (Vol. VIII). 

The papers from Course 12, while noticeably better and, in all 
mechanical respects, more workmanlike than the papers from the 
earlier courses, are especially suggestive as coming from scholars 
who had left the preparatory schools several years ago, and before 
the effects of the recent agitation on the subject of written English 
had made themselves felt to the extent they since have. In these 
papers, therefore, the old system is described in a number of schools 
which have since introduced improved methods. The several steps 
in the process of change can thus be studied by comparing the 
statements of students in this course with the statements made by 
students from the same schools included in the earlier courses. In 
this respect many of these papers are of value. 

Course 5. 

This is an advanced course. Fifteen out of the sixteen students 
taking it handed in papers, and they are of interest, first, because 
of the conclusions and suggestions to be found in them, and, secondly, 
because they show the degree of workmanlike capacity acquired by 
the most mature and highly trained of all those among the Harvard 
students taking written English instruction. As a rule these papers 
bear closely on the questions fundamental to this discussion. 

Lawrence Scientific School. 

The papers in Course BC, sixty-eight (68) in number, were handed 
in later than the others, and are bound by themselves in Vol. IX. 
This course corresponds in part to Course B and in part to Course (7, 
and is prescribed for students in the Lawrence Scientific School. It 
is open to those only who have passed in Course A. 

The papers filed in this course were noticeably inferior in nearly 
all respects, — thought, neatness of execution, spelling, penmanship 


and observation, — to the papers in the other courses. They con- 
tributed nothing to the general result, and no extracts from them are 
included in the Appendix. Taken as a whole they were the least 
creditable, as well as least suggestive, part of the exhibit. 

Radcliffe College. 

This cannot be said of the seventy (70) papers from the Radcliffe 
College students (female) which are included in the collection. 
(Vol. VIII.) These have an interest and value of their own, and 
will repay examination. Nearly all the English courses are repre- 
sented in them. In mechanical execution, — neatness, penmanship, 
punctuation and orthography, — they show a marked superiority in 
standard over the papers from the courses of the College proper, — 
perhaps three (3) only of the whole failing to reach the proper 
level. In their contents also they reveal unmistakably a greater 
degree of conscientious, painstaking effort, — the desire to perform 
faithfully and well the allotted task. On the other hand, in thought 
and in form, they are less robust and less self-assertive. A few are 
sprightly ; none of them indicate any especial capacity for observ- 
ing, or attempt, in pointing out defects and difficulties, anything 
which might be termed a thoughtful solution of them. 

The 1308 papers handed in as above from the students in the 
seven specified Harvard courses, the Lawrence Scientific School, and 
from Radcliffe, have all been read by the Committee, and upon them 
the present report is based. They have also been carefully gone 
over and indexed under the heads of the writers' names, and the 
names of the schools mentioned. The whole collection, together 
with the index, has then been bound in nine (9) large volumes, 
which have been deposited in the College Library for the information 
of all who may now be interested in the subject of this report, and 
also as a starting point, as well as basis of future comparison. 

As a body of evidence bearing on the present condition of the 
Secondary Education, and the methods of instruction in written 
English there in use, these papers have seemed to the Committee 
both of direct and indirect value. Their direct value is found in the 
statements made in them concerning the systems now or recently 
pursued in some four hundred and seventy -five (475) different 
schools in all parts of the United States, together with a few in 
Europe. These statements are entitled to various degrees of weight, 
depending on the intelligence, the correctness of recollection, and 
the power of observation of those making them ; and these qualities 


of the writers, it is proper to say, vary in such a marked degree 
that it is at times difficult to reconcile the accounts of a school given 
by several scholars coming from that school at the same time. In 
such cases, however, the intrinsic evidence in certain papers of care, 
accuracy and intelligent insight almost invariably suffice to enable 
a reader to select such as most nearly present the real state of 

In this connection reference may also perhaps best be made to 
another point. It has sometimes been urged that putting this 
evidence of past scholars as to the schools in which they had been 
taught on the shelves of a librae for public inspection is open to grave 
criticism, inasmuch as opportune and even temptation is thus held 
out for false and possibly malicious ex parte statements, through 
which, so to speak, old scores might be wiped out, often in an 
unjustifiable way ; while the master, from the very nature of the 
case, is cut off from any defence either of his system of instruction, 
or of himself. He might thus find himself held suddenly up to 
lasting ridicule or opprobrium, without remedy, or even the pos- 
sibility of answer. This objection the Committee wishes once and 
for all, to say has beeu kept steadily in mind. The papers have 
been carefully read with a view to excluding any statements which 
were unfair, harsh or indicative of malice. They proved, however, 
noticeably free from everything of the sort. In most cases both 
schools and teachers are spoken of in a kindly, and often even an 
affectionate, tone ; and, while, as would naturally be the case, the 
systems in use are frequently criticized, and, in the light of fresh 
college experience, pronounced wrong or inadequate, in no single 
instance was this done in an unworthy spirit or abusive tone. Indeed, 
it has seemed to the Committee that the masters of the preparatory 
schools named, — and there are few of the better equipped schools 
of the country which are not named, — could hardly pass a day more 
profitably than by turning in these volumes to the papers now written 
by their former pupils, and reading there fresh criticisms of themselves 
and their methods. They would find much that is dull, commonplace, 
unintelligent and unappreciative ; much, also, the reverse of this : but 
they would see themselves and their methods as, in the light of subse- 
quent experience, others see them, and might derive therefrom profit 
always and encouragement sometimes. 

But, as a body of evidence on the present condition of the Second- 
ary Education as respects instruction in written English, the chief 
value of these papers lies in the indirect, or unconscious light they 
throw upon a curiously heterogeneous sj'stem of almost undirected, 
natural growth. In this respect they are not open to question. 


Their mechanical execution, their admissions and their omissions, 
their forms of expression, and efforts at observation and criticism 
speak for themselves. They reflect, and reflect accurately, because 
unconsciously, a transitional phase in education. Their future value 
from this point of view can hardly fail to be considerable, and ever 

An examination of them reveals also the reason of the break, or 
perhaps lack of perfect connection, which at present seems to exist 
between the Preparatory Schools and the College ; it also reveals the 
tendenc}' of development which has already in great degree brought 
the two into a more perfect connection ; and, finally, it indicates in a 
manner not easily to be mistaken the process now going on, and through 
which the desired result will, in the opinion of the Committee, at no 
remote day be brought about. These several deductions it is proposed 
to develop in the present report. In so doing use will be freely 
made of the various papers as evidence, or for purposes of illustration. 
No fac-similes seem to be required. A sufficiency of such have 
l)een furnished in the previous reports of the Committee ; and, 
though many more could be furnished from the body of papers now 
under consideration, were more needed or called for, it seems, for 
present purposes, merely necessary to quote in print from certain of 
them. These papers, whether reproduced in whole or in part, have 
in every case been selected because they contain some peculiarly 
•clear and simple statement ; or because they vividly illustrate some 
phase of development or point in controversy ; or, finally, because 
they indicate on the part of the writer a grasp of the subject, or a 
special literary aptitude. For, while the mass of the papers are, 
as was of course to be expected, commonplace and monotonous, 
a few of them contain matter bright, observant, reflective, and at 
times humorous ; and from such the Committee has endeavored 
to make selection. 

In the first place, the Committee desires to premise that, taken as a 
whole, the conclusions and inferences to be drawn from these papers 
are distinctly and unmistakably encouraging. That much room still 
exists for improvement and an elevation of standard, is apparent, 
when it is said that the papers from English A show conclusively 
that about 25 per cent, of the students now admitted to Harvard are 
unable to write their mother tongue with the ease and freedom abso- 
lutely necessary to enable them to proceed advantageously in any 
college course. In other words, one in every four of the papers filed 
in English A is in a mechanical way so badly done, — so ill-written, 


incorrectly spelled, ungrammatically expressed, and generally unwork- 
manlike, — that it clearly shows the writer out of place in college, 
and material proper for the Grammar even, rather than for the 
Secondary, school. This is made apparent even by a cursory exam- 
ination. And yet, none the less, these very papers have their value, 
inasmuch as they reveal through the statements they contain wherein 
is to be found the root of the trouble ; and, moreover, they further 
indicate the steps now being taken to remove that trouble. In 
this connection it is difficult to over-estimate the importance of 
the work done by the English Department of the College. It has 
been described in the document recently published entitled " Twenty 
Years of School and College English ; " * and it affords the Committee 
no little satisfaction to say that the papers under consideration furnish 
evidence, both abundant and incontrovertible, of the far-reaching and 
beneficent influence of the policy and efforts therein referred to. 

To appreciate, however, the necessity as well as the nature and 
scope of this recent work of the English Department, it is necessary 
to understand its connection with what has gone before, — the 
situation must be considered from the historical point of view ; for, 
only when so considered, can the process of gradual and necessaiy 
development which has been going on for a score of years, and will 
probably continue for an equal time to come, be intelligently com- 
prehended. That it should be intelligently comprehended, especi- 
ally by those engaged in the work of secondary instruction is most 
desirable ; for it seems to be altogether too frequently supposed 
that the increased English requirements for college admission have 
ncr other object than the development of a new and somewhat super- 
fluous branch of general education, in no way necessarily connected 
with the other and traditional branches ; and, moreover, one which is 
handled in a somewhat vexatious and incomprehensible fashion. Yet 
that this has not really been the case becomes apparent the moment 
the situation is looked at in its antecedent connection. 

Speaking generally, and in the absence of any accepted basis of 
evidence, it may be said that forty years ago Harvard College, and the 
schools which prepared for admission to it, were in close touch with 
each other ; or, in other words, the systems of instruction pursued in 
the two were much the same. In each, it was in largest part oral ; 
that is, in the college as in the school, the scholar prepared his 

* Four papers prepared by Professors Hill and Briggs and Mr. Hurlbut 
between 1879 and 1892, and republished with an " Introductory Note " and Appen- 
dix among the Harvard University Publications, in 1896. An acquaintance 
with this document is necessary to any correct understanding of the present 
phase of the " College English " discussion. 


lesson, and, when called upon, stood up in class and recited to the 
instructor, answering questions and otherwise indicating orally his 
familiarity with the subject. Themes and forensics were prepared 
and handed in at certain stages of the college course and at stated 
intervals, — once a month or twice a term, as the case might be. 
The college classes, also, were then comparatively small, and the 
work imposed on the instructors correspondingly light, and limited 
to the recitation room. 

About the year 1870 a change began to make itself felt, first in 
numbers and then in the methods of the college, which gradually 
brought about what amounted to a revolution. The classes increased 
in size nearly fourfold, so as to become wholly unmanageable for oral 
recitation, and the elective system was greatly enlarged ; step by 
step, the oral method of instruction was then abandoned, and a 
system of lectures, with periodic written examinations, took its 
place ; so that at last the whole college work was practically done in 
writing. The need of facility in written expression was, of course, 
correspondingly increased. Without the power of writing his mother 
tongue readily and legibly a college student was not equipped for the 
work he had to do, inasmuch as he did not have at his control an 
implement essential in doing that work. Writing English had thus 
become a mere incident, and no longer an end, in the student's 
college processes. This was so from the day he presented himself 
for the entrance examination forward to his graduation ; and, prob- 
ably, at no time in his whole course did he feel the need of the tool 
so acutely as on the day when he sat down, a candidate for admis- 
sion, with the dreaded examination papers before him. 

Meanwhile, naturally enough, no similar or corresponding change 
took place in the sj^stem of instruction in vogue in the preparatory 
schools. They went on in the traditional oral methods. The scholars 
continued to stand up in class as their fathers had done before them, 
and what written work they did was almost never incidental, but 
by and for itself. Confined to stated exercises in penmanship or, 
so called, composition, at given intervals of time, it was not suffi- 
cient in amount to give the scholar a sense of familiarity or ease. 
It was as if a boy had been taught to skate, to ride a bicycle or to 
play ball, through oral and theoretical instruction in the principles 
of lines, curves and balancing, with one hour of practice once a 
month, or even twice in three weeks. Of course, through such a 
method of instruction, without daily practice, be would never learn 
to play ball or skate familiarly or well. 

Thus the schools by degrees ceased to prepare for the college. 
Scholars accustomed to oral work presented themselves for a written 


examination, with practical results which have been set forth in the 
facsimiles submitted in previous reports of this Committee. The 
College Faculty, perplexed at the unprepared condition of those they 
were practically compelled to admit, went on raising the requirements 
in written English, while the schools still continued their English 
instruction in the old-fashioned objective way, — more "themes," 
u compositions," " essays," were exacted, but the oral class instruc- 
tion was adhered to. The friction, for such it amounted to, between 
the school and the college thus steadily increased. 

The Freshman course known as English A was accordingly intro- 
duced, representing what might be called the intermediate stage, — 
that between school and college. The scholar trained in the oral 
system, with English simply used objectively, or as an exercise by 
itself and for itself, was compelled to take this course in order that 
he might learn to use English incidentally, or as a necessarj* medium 
in other courses. The papers forwarded to the Committee from the 
students taking this course, and now placed on the shelves of the 
Library, were not only in number more than those from any other 
course, constituting indeed 40 per cent, of all sent in, but, taken as 
a whole, they were the most interesting and suggestive ; though to a 
very large extent unconsciously so. 

The problem presented is obvious to any one who will take the 
trouble to read these papers in English A ; while the difficulty in the 
way of its solution at once suggests itself. At the same time, in 
theory at least, the way to overcome that difficulty is not far to seek. 
The problem is to increase to a very great extent the work in written 
English now done in the preparatory schools, and at the same time 
largely to change its character. More practice, more daily drill and 
severe discipline are required. The difficulty is to find time for this 
practice, drill and discipline. The contention is that the requirements 
already made occupy all the time available ; and the daily theme or 
essay or composition, however desirable, can only be got from the 
scholar by sacrificing some other, and more necessary, study. The 
solution seems to be simple ; — English should be taught in the pre- 
paratory schools not, as now, altogether objectively, but incidentally, 
and in connection with other studies, — mathematics, geography, 
history and, especially, foreign languages and the Classics. 

Take the Classics as an example of what is proposed. The theory 
upon which the study of the Classics, both Greek and Latin, has 
always been, and still is, insisted upon as the best introduction to a 
college course, is that in no other way can a knowledge of construc- 
tion, grammar and vocabulary be so well acquired. It is the most 
thorough possible grounding in written expression. However true 


this may be in theory, it is in practice, under the oral methods now 
pursued, to a very large extent fallacious. The two things are 
taught separately, and, as the previous reports of the Committee 
demonstrate, the candidates for admission to Harvard can neither 
write English, nor translate into English the classic authors. Yet few 
who look into the subject carefully will, it is probable, feel disposed to 
deny that the rendering of passages from the classic authors into writ- 
ten English is on the whole the most severe discipline possible both in 
the study of Greek and Latin, and in writing English. The candidate 
for admission to college who is able to meet that test, need feel no 
apprehension as respects the other branches of English. Here then 
is a place where time can be saved, and the necessary discipline 
given in clearly written English. The present slovenly, inexact oral 
method of rendering the Classics "into that lazy, mongrel dialect, 
'Translation English,'" can, and, as the examination papers show, 
should give way, at least in part, to daily written work. 

The practical objection made to this method of instruction is 
obvious. It is supposed to involve great additional outside labor on 
the part of the masters of the preparatory- schools. The written 
translations, it is assumed, must be examined, out of school hours, 
by the instructors, corrected and returned to the scholars. If this 
were indeed the case the objection to the method proposed would be 
final. School-masters are mortal ; and, being mortal, they must have 
rest from their labors. They cannot work out of hours, as well as in 
hours. But is this process necessary ? It would not so seem. The 
course here suggested is not proposed as a substitute for the present 
English and classical instruction, but as incidental to it. Every 
other day, for instance, the recitation from the Classics would be, 
not oral, but, as in the college, written. The scholars when they 
came into the class, would appear with a written translation in their 
hands. Instead then of rendering the lesson of the day orally, as 
now, such of them as were called on would read from the papers 
they had prepared. These papers the instructor could take, in the 
class, glance over them, and satisfy himself as to the execution ; the 
papers of such as were not called upon at that recitation would then 
be handed to the master for such further examination as he might wish 
to give to them, or consigned directly to the waste-paper basket, — 
in either case the scholars would have had their drill in preparing the 
lesson, and their turn to be called upon would come some other day. 
The whole class is not necessarily called on for oral recitation now ; 
it would not be called on for written recitation then. The severe, 
constant, daily discipline and practice would, all the same, have been 
undergone ; and the master would have disposed of his work during 


The system would, too, admit of alternation, and a consequent 
variety of exercise, which would afford a much needed relief to both 
instructor and scholar, by breaking up that tedious monotony of 
method, the bane of the average school. The written exercise in 
the Classics of one day, could the next be followed by one in 
mathematics, or history, or French, or German, or geography. But 
every day some recitatation, now conducted orally, should be con- 
ducted in writing. In this way the scholars would be accustomed 
before entering college to use written English as a means, and not 
merely as an end. They would then write as they now speak ; — in 
other words the}' would in their preparatory training be taught to 
talk with the pen. 

It is, indeed, not unsafe to sa} r that the schools and the college 
will not be brought into close sympathy and complete touch until 
this incidental method is introduced into the Secondary Education. 
But, on the other hand, there should be no misunderstanding as to 
the extent of the change in method proposed, or the way in which it 
should be introduced. The incidental method of instruction is 
not intended to supplant either the old oral method, or the present 
training in English composition, but merely to take their place to 
a limited but an ever increasing extent. The oral method has its 
distinct educational value, for the ability to express oneself in speech 
is of even more importance than the ability to express oneself on 
paper ; and, in this respect, the present college system may, perhaps, 
be open to criticism. But, this apart, as between the preparatory 
schools and the college, the two methods should not be distinct; 
they should, on the contrary, insensibly merge into each other. It 
might be well for the college to recur in some degree to oral 
methods ; but, whether it does or does not, it is obvious that 
during the last two years of every preparatory course it should be 
the practice to have more and more of each day's work done in writ- 
ing. But again this incidental class-writing must not be made a 
substitute for the formal written work now done. It must be in 
addition thereto ; and regular written compositions, periodically called 
for, should, as now, be subjected to severe, out-of-school, correction, 
and equally severe, in-school, revision. 

Such is the problem ; and such the theoretical solution of it. As is 
usual, however, the solution proposed fails to commend itself to the 
judgment of a large portion, perhaps much the larger portion, of 
those engaged in the work of secondary education. It is, when not 
characterized as absurd, pronounced not practical as an every day, 
working, school-system. Wedded to the accustomed methods and 
the ancient ways, neither teacher nor pupil take kindly and at once 

to innovations, and especially to innovations which involve more 
severe mental effort and more exacting drill, — in a word, more 
drudgery. There is, among the extracts from the papers submitted 
in the Appendix to this report one (No. 90) both interesting and 
suggestive on this point, the introduction of the method proposed hav- 
ing led to "a storm of angry criticism"; yet, afterwards, its efficiency 
was recognized. As a system it is, perhaps, open to the objection that 
it involves drudgery; indeed, effective systems of discipline, intel- 
lectual or physical, educational or military, are usually open to that 
objection. The traditional oral method in school-teaching may be 
slip-shod and slovenly ; undeniably — for the college papers prove it 
— it does lead directly " into that lazy, mongrel dialect ' Translation 
English ' " already referred to ; but, none the less, it has the advan- 
tage of being eas} r . The written method, on the contrar}', is crucial. 
It brings ignorance and carelessness at once to the surface, and 
compels their correction. This commends itself neither to the aver- 
age teacher nor to the average scholar ; and they become at once 
fertile in objections. 

It is in their bearing on this phase of the problem that the papers 
herewith submitted are most valuable. They constitute in them- 
selves, as the extracts from them show, not only an unconscious 
debate, but a debate that is, on the issue presented, final and con- 
clusive. There is in them a general and decisive agreement that 
English A as now conducted is not a proper college course, but 
should be relegated to the preparatory schools. On this point there 
is practically no division of opinion. But here the agreement ceases, 
and the writers divide themselves into two classes. The first, and 
by far the larger class, representing, indeed, the great bulk of the 
schools, raise the objection of time ; they describe how the methods 
in use in the schools from which they came, — the occasional theme, 
composition or essay, — the reading and analysis of authors and the 
consequent discussions of " st}*le," — consumed the school hours. 
They then declare that the daily theme, however desirable, could 
not have been introduced without a displacement of some other 
indispensable study. (Appendix, Nos. 3-68.) This conclusion, and 
the thoroughly practical considerations on which it is based, could not 
well be expressed more concisely than in the following extract, typical 
of many, from one of the papers handed in to the Committee : — 
"I believe that I received far too little training in writing English, 
for my own good ; but I feel sure that I could not have given up a 
part of any other subject to make more time for writing English, 
without greatty lessening my chances of passing all my examinations 
for Harvard College." 


Such is the contention on one side. On the other side a much 
smaller body of writers describe a different system as already pre- 
vailing in the schools from which they came, — the incidental system, 
— the exact system which suggests itself in theory, and which is so fre- 
quently, and somewhat contemptuously, dismissed, as being excellent 
in theory, but in working not practical. Though all indications of the 
sources from which they came are for obvious reasons suppressed in 
the papers and extracts from papers herewith submitted as bearing 
on this subject, it is noticeable also that the schools which are de- 
scribed as rapidly drifting into the incidental methods and accommo- 
dating themselves to the new conditions, are almost invariably those 
generally recognized as the more intelligent and progressive, and 
those, also, the students from which present the most creditable and 
observant papers. From these papers (Appendix, Nos. 69-119) it 
will be seen that a number of schools have brought themselves already 
into touch and sympathy with the college, assuming English iasa 
part of the preparatory course, and thus sending up their graduates 
equipped at the outset to go forward in advanced work. 

For this reason the Committee has referred to the discussion to 
be found in these papers as final on the point at issue. It is difficult 
to persist in declaring a system of training absurd, or even not practi- 
cal, which is found to be both in actual use, and in a use which is both 
increasing and successful ; and that, too, in the most approved schools. 
Whatever may be said to the contrary, its general adoption becomes 
then a question only of time. The evidence contained in the body of 
papers and extracts herewith submitted is in the judgment of the 
Committee so conclusive on this point, as to obviate the necessity of 
further discussion ; and for this reason, as a mere unsupported asser- 
tion in regard to its existence and character would not probably be 
accepted as sufficient, it has seemed to the Committee expedient to 
spread that evidence upon the record to an extent which, under other 
circumstances, might be thought unnecessary. Moreover, the debate 
itself, conducted as it was by those looking at the issue from no 
mere abstract or theoretical point of view but in the light of fresh 
personal experience, is in a marked degree graphic and instructive. 
.It is not the evidence of one witness or of several, speaking of a 
local and exceptional experiment and its results, nor is it testimony 
slowly elicited in response to leading interrogatories. On the con- 
trary, as will be seen from an examination of these extracts, at 
once many and copious, they are the spontaneous expression of a 
large number of students, fresh from many schools, bearing, always 
directly, often unconsciously, on a phase of educational develop- 
ment. As such they, in the judgment of the Committee, constitute 
the one portion of this report likely to prove of permanent value. 
Hence the space allotted to them. 


The Committee have thus endeavored to set forth (1) the historical 
origin of the unsatisfactory state of affairs as respects " College Eng- 
lish," now existing, and of which so much has of late been heard; 
(2) the steps which have, more or less intelligently, been taken in 
consequence thereof ; (3) the gradual remedial process now going 
on : while the large body of papers placed in the College Library in 
connection with this report throw, as the Committee has already said, 
a light both interesting and valuable on the different phases and the 
ultimate tendency of that process. As regards the last, also, the 
rate of progress indicated in these papers, while seeming slow to 
some, can hardly be considered otherwise than satisfactory, con- 
sidering the size and wholly unorganized character of the body to 
be influenced, — hundreds of schools, public and private, general 
and specialized, planted amid surroundings which vary greatly in 
character, preparing thousands annually for admission into scores 
of institutions of the advanced education. A few of the numerous 
passages to be found in the papers submitted, bearing on the great 
number and varied character of the schools, have been selected, and 
can be found in the Appendix (Nos. 146-158). They will suffice for 
purpose of illustration. But where a body of institutions so hetero- 
geneous, so widely scattered, and of such varied environment are 
to be influenced and brought into line, progress must necessarily 
be slow, and cannot but be attended with friction and loss of power, 
inevitable, but not the less on that account to be regretted. 

But, while all this is true, it should also be added that the lamentable 
waste of time and expenditure of misdirected effort revealed through- 
out these papers, is largely due to a misunderstanding among those 
engaged in the work of the proper functions or province, as respects 
English education, of the college and the secondary schools. The 
two, it is apparent, have not yet assumed their recognized relations 
to each other ; and, in consequence, while the college is today forced 
to do much work of a purely elementary character which properly 
should be done in the secondary schools, those schools on the other 
hand are in many cases endeavoring to do the work which properly 
belongs to the college. 

The course known as English A is the debatable ground, and to 
that course it is always necessary to recur in carrying on the discus- 
sion. The scope and character of Course A have already been referred 
to. The instruction given in it is purely elemental, — teaching boys 
the rudiments of English composition ; to which, as the evidence 
herewith put on record altogether too clearly proves, penmanship 
ought by good rights to be added : for, if the University undertakes 
to do Grammar school work, it should at least do it thoroughly, and 


not, as now, in a half-hearted way. Accordingly, if it means to con- 
tinue what is known as " English A " as part of the college course, 
it should, under existing conditions of the primary and secondary 
education, proceed forthwith to create chairs of Chirography, Or- 
thography, and Punctuation to supplement the existing chairs of 
Rhetoric and Belles-Lettres, and to relieve their now sadly over- 
worked occupants. In other words the students when sent up for 
admission lack elementary training ; and, in subsequently giving that 
training to them, the University has to do the work of both the 
Grammar and the Preparatory schools. In this respect, and it is a 
very important respect, the present requirements for college admis- 
sion seem to the Committee decidedly too lax. They should be 
raised at least to the point of compelling candidates to prepare their 
examination papers neatly, legibly and with a certain amount of 
mechanical facility, including a decent regard for penmanship, 
grammar and spelling. As the papers herewith deposited in the 
Library conclusively prove, these are not now requirements for 
admission to Harvard. 

On the other hand these papers show an equally strange confusion 
in the minds of a large proportion of the teachers concerning the prov- 
ince of the secondary schools in the matter of English composition. 
Because the college requirements call for a certain amount of written 
English, including pnpers in the nature of abstracts of a number of 
specified books, it seems to be altogether too frequently assumed that 
the institutions of secondary education are expected annually to send 
up for admission to college solid phalanxes of potential authors, 
essayists, and litterateurs. The evidence of this delusion is to be 
found almost everywhere in the nine volumes of papers under con- 
sideration, — evidence incontrovertible, because wholly unconscious, 
and some of it comical, did it not, from its revelation of misdirected 
effort and unintelligent zeal, verge on the pathetic. 

Take, for example, the matter of reading standard authors. It is, 
of course, most desirable to set good literary models before children 
in the preparatory schools, and to familiarize them as early as pos- 
sible with the names and works of the great English writers ; and the 
college, therefore, very properly demands on the part of candidates 
for admission a certain familarity with our better literature* and with 
tile masters of what is known as " style." From the educational point 
of view, and as an element in learning how to write, the reading the 

* The nomenclature is sometime a little startling, if it assumed to indicate 
familiarity with the works of great English writers ; as, for instance, the follow- 
ing in one paper, " certain books, such as Scott's ' Old Immortality and Lady 
of the Lake,' and Longfellow's ' Evangeline,' " 


works of these writers is just as important as, reverting to the com- 
parison already used, it is for a boy eager to excel in skating, in play- 
ing base-ball, or in riding a bicycle to watch experts or professionals 
as they perform their feats upon the ice, in the rink, or on the ball- 
ground. Provided he is observing and interested, the boy, while 
thus looking on, learns to distinguish really good skating, good ball- 
playing, and skilful bicycling from the work of bunglers ; and this 
helps him greatly in his own daily practice. It is well, however, that 
both instructor and scholar should realize that the mere reading of 
books, though good so far as it goes, will no more of itself make a 
writer than the looking at masterpieces will make an artist, or listen- 
ing to music a composer.* There is no easy road, any more than 
there is a royal road, to excellence in any of these fields. In all of 
them, on the contrary, not excellence, but only proficiency, is the 
ordinary result of long-sustained, strenuous labor under careful in- 
struction ; and mere proficiency even will not come through parrot- 
like imitation. 

The instructor, too, must not only appreciate this somewhat impor- 
tant fact, but he must have a clear understanding of his own part in 
the work. Unfortunately, as the evidence herewith submitted only 
too plainly shows, this is at present not always the case. The 
instructor, in altogether too many instances, does not know how 
to do his part in the work, and consequently the study of literary 
models as now carried on in our schools of secondary education not 
infrequently does more harm than good. Not only, as the papers 
show, is it marked by a pitiful waste of valuable time, but it leaves 
behind it a sense of weariness and disgust rather than mind hunger. 
For instance what possible benefit can immature boys derive from 
devoting a large portion of a whole school term to the analysis of 
a single oration of Webster's by paragraphs, sentences and clauses ; 
or what but a sense of repulsion can result, if children, needing 
assimilative nutriment and craving the stimulant of interest, are daily 

* " I do not wish to say a word against the particular school which I attended, 
nor against the schools of the West. From all I can hear this lamentable state 
of things exists in nearly all the high schools of our country, East or West. This 
system of teaching English, — of pounding very abstract principles into very con- 
crete heads is one of the subjects of my complaint. A person may know every 
note of a piece of music, he may know and feel every mark of expression, on 
the mental instrument he may execute the composition with wonderful skill, — 
but, seated before the real piano, his untrained fingers will wander helpless in 
the confusion of keys. A person may have read every book written on the life, 
language and customs of Homer and his time, but the only way to know Homer 
is to read Homer himself. So it is I think the only way to learn to write Eng- 
lish, is to practice writing English." Extract from an English A paper, by a 
student from Montana. 


dosed with long and to them nauseous, because unintelligible, drafts 
from Emerson, Ruskin, Cardinal Manning, Matthew Arnold and 
Walter Pater? Upon this point the papers which accompany the 
present report are curiously suggestive. 

Indeed, such educational performances as are again and again 
described in them with perfect simplicity and obvious truthfulness 
would be reckoned impossible in anything but what is known as 
" English composition," — something obviously supposed to be quite 
other than plain written English. "Composition," it is apparent, 
is assumed to be high art in writing, — what is somewhat ambitiously 
known as Rhetoric and Belles-Lettres. Accordingly, educational 
eccentricities are sometimes revealed in the preparatory schools which 
would scarcely be thought credible but for the evidence now placed 
on record. For instance, taking once more other branches of 
development, for purpose of illustration, the great masters of written 
expression are no less rare than the great masters of painting or 
of music, — a Milton, an Addison, a Burke or an Emerson would 
rank in the individuality or choiceness of his work with a Rembrandt, 
a Titian or a Millet in painting, or a Mozart, a Beethoven or a 
Wagner in music. A school-master, whose business it was to instruct 
children of from 15 to 18 years of age in the elements of drawing, 
painting or music, with a view to passing an examination for admit- 
tance into some Academy, would naturally devote his time and that 
of his classes, to a severe discipline in the first rudiments of music 
and draughtsmanship, — the practice of the scales and the drawing 
of straight lines, the flexibility of the muscles, the facility of the 
fingers and the correctness of ear and eye. But what would be 
thought of a master who, instead of this, exhibited a copy, — a 
good copy, perhaps, — of a portrait by Titian or Velasquez, Rubens 
or Reynolds, or played to his pupils, or took them to hear, a com- 
position of Wagner, Mozart or Beethoven, — analyzing according 
to his lights and after his own fashion the masterpieces under 
consideration, pointing out differences of method and manner, and 
then, after thus directing the budding intelligence of those who did 
not yet know really how to draw a line or strike a note, and who 
were not mature enough to have any correct appreciation of what 
they had seen or heard, should tell them to sit down at their 
desks and paint a portrait after the manner first of Rembrandt and 
then of Velasquez, or compose a symphon}' in the style of Mozart as 
distinguished from that of Beethoven? Yet, incredible as it seems, 
this is now done in some of the preparatory schools. 

The papers, especially those of English A, afford manj r examples 
and instances, a few of which are reproduced and herewith submitted 


in evidence of the defects and absurdities of instruction just referred 
to. (Appendix, Nos. 120-142.) Indeed, as a whole, these 1300 
papers may be said to be full of loose, meaningless talk, — perhaps 
cant would not be too strong a descriptive word, — about " style," 
"mass," "individuality," "rhetoric," "originality," "expression," 
"technique," "barbarisms," "solecisms," etc., etc., indicating an 
utter lack on the part of those who had instructed the writers of the 
proper limits of the work assigned them to do ; — that is, of the true 
province of the schools of secondary education as respects written 
English as opposed to the province of the college.* No satisfactory 
result can be hoped for until these limits are not only defined, but 
generally understood and accepted. 

The province of the secondary education is, then, not to train up 
and develop whole classes of potential Miltons, Defoes, Addisons, 
Macaula} T s and Hawthornes, — it has, on the contrary nothing what- 
ever to do with such processes, and whatever mistakenly, or from 
excess of zeal, it may do in that direction will probably be ill 
done, and have of necessity, with much vexation of spirit, to be 
wholly undone and painfully redone. (Appendix Nos. 143-145.) 
It is the University, not the Preparatory School, which has to do 
with "style" and "individuality," " Mass, Coherence and Form," 
with, in a word, that much abused and misused branch of study 
known in educational parlance as " Rhetoric." The province of the 
preparatory schools is to train the scholar, boy or girl, and train him 
or her thoroughly, in what can only be described as the elements and 
rudiments of written expression, — they should teach facile, clear 
penmanship, correct spelling, simple grammatical construction, and 
neat, workmanlike, mechanical execution. And this is no slight or 
simple task. It certainly, as these papers show, is not generally 
accomplished now. Nor will the desired result ever be brought 
about by occasional or spasmodic exercises of a half hour or one 
hour now and again, at intervals of three days, a week or a fortnight, 
throughout the school course, — it demands stead}-, daily drill, and 
drudgery of a kind most wearisome. Its purpose and aim are not 
ambitious, — its work is not inspiring ; — no more ambitious and no 

* " I think, too, that my style of writing was never paid enough attention to. 
One teacher told us that, unless we were geniuses, we probably had no style of 
our own. I was no genius, but I had a style, and a very poor one it was. The 
form of my work was criticised, grammatical and rhetorical errors were pointed 
out, but no one was good enough to tell me to get back to simplicity and leave 
off trying to make an impression. That I have had to learn myself." The fore- 
going extract from one of the papers submitted by the Radcliffe College students 
is, in several respects, suggestive. The writer was a graduate of a Massachusetts 
city High School and Normal School. 


more inspiring than the similar elementary drill in the musical scales, 
or the mixing of colors and drawing of straight lines. Its end is to 
so train the child, muscularly and mentally, from its earliest years, 
that when it completes its school education he or she may be able on 
occasion to talk with the pen as well as with the tongue, — in other 
words to make a plain, clear, simple statement of any matter under 
consideration, neatly written, correctly spelled, grammatically ex- 
pressed : — And this is English A. 

The scholar, when this result is accomplished, and not before, is 
prepared for admission to college. The preparatory school has then, 
in so far, done its work, and done it well. It remains afterwards for 
the student, guided by his necessities or following his aptitudes, to 
decide what use he will make of his elementary training. In nineteen 
cases out of twenty, it will be found to suffice for his future needs. 
He has all the power and facility of written expression he requires to 
enable him, whether in college or in practical life, to do his work or 
accomplish his aims. He may feel no call, and have no wish, to become 
an essa}*ist, an author, or a litterateur, — but in his business or voca- 
tion he can express himself indifferently with the tongue or with the 
pen. Fortunately our college classes are not wholly composed of 
would-be or even nascent Macaulays, Carlyles and Ruskins, Walter 
Paters or Stevensons ; but when the one man in twenty presents 
himself, who, after full and sufficient drill and drudgery in the rudi- 
ments, elects to go forward to a more advanced literary education, it 
then becomes the province of the University to take him in hand, and 
afford him every facility for so doing. 

Both the secondary and the advanced education will, in the judg- 
ment of the Committee, continue in the present transitional, and 
somewhat confused transitional, phase, until these distinct provinces 
are recognized, and each confines itself to, or is left free to fulfil, its 
proper functions. For a considerable time yet to come, it is to be 
feared, the preparatory schools will continue worse than wasting much 
valuable time, under the erroneous idea that through attempts, at 
once futile and ludicrous, to make crude boys bear a remote resem- 
blance to certain great authors, they are merely meeting college 
requirements ; on the other hand, they will also go on sending up a 
large proportion of those who annually present themselves for admis- 
sion to the colleges untrained in the rudiments of written English, 
for the very obvious reason that those thus sent up have never been 
subjected to that monotonous daily practice without which ease in 
the use of the pen can no more be obtained than could excellence 
in foot-ball, rowing, or tennis. Meanwhile the college must con- 
tinue to accept this unprepared material, and practically devote a 


very considerable part of one of the four years of its course to 
teaching those who now should be students, but are in fact still 
school-boys, how to use the necessary tools. Having taught them 
this, it is next necessary to disabuse them of the notions about 
"style" and " rhetoric " which have been laboriously instilled into 

The 1300 papers, part of this report, show clearly enough the 
degree of progress made up to the present time in this process of 
separation, — delimitation it perhaps might be called. That it has 
not been more rapid is greatly to be regretted ; but, none the less, 
the indications are distinct that the system is steadily tending towards 
the desired result, and that its attainment is a mere question of years. 
In fact, as the body of evidence now placed on file shows, in this, as 
in all cases of radical change, a new generation of instructors had 
both to be brought up and allowed time in which to make their 
influence felt. The old generation, — the masters of the old school, 
— as their criticisms on the changes introduced into the system to 
which they were accustomed, clearty showed, could only in rare 
individual instances adapt themselves to the new order of things, or 
appreciate either its significance or its necessity. It has devolved on 
Harvard to lead in this great change, the far-reaching educational 
consequences of which cannot yet be measured. It is enough for the 
present to say that it manifestly aims at nothing less than elevating 
the study of English to the same plane of dignity which has for 
centuries been the peculiar attribute of the classic tongues.* Their 
exclusiveness in the domain of the advanced education is challenged ; 
and a race of young instructors is now at work, and is going out from 
the University in yearly increasing numbers, whose influence has 
only begun to make itself felt, but will in the end be little less than 

Under these circumstances, the Committee believes that the present 
report, with the documentary matter placed in the College Library 
in connection with it, will be the last of the series it has felt 
called upon to make. Those reports have been four in number and 
consecutive, in each case the evidence upon which the Committee 
based its conclusions being made part of the permanent record. 
As such this evidence will hereafter speak for itself, either in justi- 

* " The Greeks would not have obtained so perfect a literary expression if 
they had devoted less attention to their own language than to Assyrian or 
Egyptian; but that is practically, in principle, what we are doing." Appendix, 
No. 61. Extract from a paper in Course 12. 


fication of the conclusions drawn, or otherwise. A basis for future 
comparison is thus at least provided ; and it will remain for the 
Committee which in 1920, or thereabouts, may then have imposed 
upon it the duty of examining into the Department of English Compo- 
sition and Rhetoric to report, after comparing the results at that time 
attained with those now placed on record, whether the present Com- 
mittee is correct in its judgment as respects the tendency and force of 
the influences now at work. To the Committee the trend of develop- 
ment as seen in the papers prepared for it seems so pronounced 
and so strong, that the attainment of the end it has all along had 
in view may be assumed. Correct, elementary, written English will 
in the near future be scientifically taught as part of the primary and 
secondary education. The complete relegation of the course known 
as English A from the college to the preparatory schools will be the 
first manifest result of this more intelligent elementary training, and 
will be sufficient evidence that the change has taken place. That 
result the Committee does not believe is remote ; but it is not likely 
to be hastened by further action on its part. When, however, it is 
attained, — be that time five years hence, as the Committee hopes, or 
fifty, as may prove to be the case, — then, and not until then, will 
the preparatory schools perform their work in elementary English 
instruction efficiently, and without encroaching on the work appropri- 
ate to the University ; while the University, relieved of rudimentary 
drill, will be able thenceforth to devote its means and energy to its 
proper function, that of the Advanced Education. 


June, 1897. 



Page 406. 
No. 1. 

At the Normal School [Massachusetts] we were given no training 
in English as English. In connection with the various studies we 
were told to write essays on the different phases of the work, but the 
work was criticized only in reference to the knowledge contained ; 
the English being made of little account. I think any work in Eng- 
lish would be a most beneficial addition to the Normal training. A 
course in theme writing might well be introduced. Power to use 
English correctly should be most thoroughly drilled into persons 
intending to be teachers, and yet there is no such training given in 
any Normal School in the state. 

I should therefore recommend at least a one year course in English 
writing for the Normal School. Daily themes — describing matters 
of present interest — together with fortnightly themes would afford an 
excellent course to round out the otherwise excellent training which 
the Normal School affords. 

No. 2. 

The defects in my preparatory training are very evident. My com- 
positions never underwent severe and careful criticism. In the High 
School I had practically no training in writing English ; merit, it had 
none, its defects were due to negligence. The time that should be 
given to composition was devoted to the study of grammar. The 
same is true of the Normal School. The writing of compositions 
was delayed too long. We were supposed to write a good thesis 
without any training. The system can easily be improved by giving 
much less time to the formal study of grammar and much more time 
to the writing of regular and careful compositions. 

See also page 421, note. 



Page 415. 
No. 3. 

The one great unfavorable criticism which I make of my early 
training in English composition, however, is not that I did not 
receive training in the principals of composition, or that the hours 
for it were cut, but that I did not receive practice enough. Pupils 
disliked to write and teachers to correct, and therefore by unanimous 
consent we wrote but little. I have compared the work which I shall 
do in the half course in English which I am taking this year to my 
last year's course in the [Massachusetts Latin School where I was 
prepared for Harvard] . In the Latin School my average number of 
words a week was sixty. In English B my average per week will be 
two hundred and fifty. If we consider that these two hundred and 
fifty words are rewritten then is the comparison of sixty words in the 
Latin School a week to five hundred a week this } 7 ear in College. If 
the amount written in English 22, is double that written in B there 
stands the comparison of sixty to one thousand or sixteen to one. 

No. 4. 

From the School at Hartford I went to [a New England 
Academ}']. The practice in English was singularly elementary in 
comparison with the attention given other subjects. Once a week 
the class met to recite a lesson in English grammar which no one 
had looked at previousl}-. This was supplemented by writing a two 
page theme once a month and by reading the Lady of the Lake out- 
side of the class. The class in Algebra, Latin and Greek met every 
day for one hour in great contrast to the classes in English a knowl- 
edge of which was taken for granted. 

My experience has been that English is regarded as a very second- 
aiy subject at most schools in America the teachers consider that a 
scholar obtains a sufficient knowledge of his own tongue in doing his 
other work. 

English should at least receive the attention that Latin and Greek 
get and the work in the preparatory school should be pushed far 
enough to enable Freshmen to anticipate English A. 

No. 5. 

But besides the mental training which men frequently fail to bring 
to college with them, there is needed a sense of proportion and appre- 
ciation which can be developed in no better way than by the frequent 
exercise of writing English composition. It is this practice which 
men need before taking the prescribed Harvard English. To expect 
them to comprehend the principles of connotation fully when they 


cannot even put a simple sentence together properly seems as futile 
as it would be to expect a child to learn to walk by having lectures 
read him on the correct method of locomotion. To instruct such 
men in the ways of descriptive writing is of no more advantage than 
a lecture on word painting would be to a bill poster. Therefore I 
say, let more English composition be taught in the preparatory 
Schools, and less thumbing of the dictionary in attempts to acquire 
modern languages. Without such preparation the Harvard courses 
are like splendid tools in the hands of workmen provided with no 
proper material upon which they may use them. 

Of course there are plenty of men whom endless culture could 
never teach to write well ; there are again men at Harvard who 
might, perhaps, more profitably turn their attentions to other Eng- 
lish courses, were it not that conflicts in hours compel them to take 
the prescribed English ; but generally speaking, if men came to col- 
lege with their perceptions more keenly developed by the frequent 
practice of carefully writing exercises in their own or some other 
language, I feel sure that more benefit could be derived from the 
excellent courses given us here at Harvard. 

No. 6. 

While, then, my Preparatory work seems to have been excellent in 
the sort of work I have mentioned ; as this included all of my written 
work, it is evident that a very important part of my English work, — 
viz. writing compositions, — was neglected. In suggesting improve- 
ment, however, I would not have the other work reduced, but have 
the composition work added. We had but two recitations a week in 
English, while in m} 7 first year of Latin, we had nine recitations a 
week : my point is, that four recitations a week in English would 
have given me a far better foundation for College work, and five 
recitations a week in Latin would certainly have been sufficient for 
that first } r ear's work. It seems very strange to me that so much 
time is spent in the study of Languages — Especially Latin and 
Greek — before we have little more than a slight knowledge of how 
to express ourselves in our English tongue. 

No. 7. 

I don't like to recall m} T preparation in English, and it grieves me 
greatly to write of it. I shall try, however, to give as accurate an 
account as my poor memory will allow me. 

In the college preparatory course in the High School [of a city 
near Boston], from which I was graduated, but two years — the first 
and the last — were given to work in English, and then but two hours 
a week. 

The first year we read Lamb's "Tales from Shakespeare," and 
Longfellow's "Evangeline," besides numerous other books which I 
do not remember. After reading we were required to write themes 
and essays upon them. Once a week we wrote themes ; work very 
similar to that in English A. We had, also, an extended drill in 


punctuation. This first year's work I think very good. Could I 
have gone on in the same way during the other three years I would 
have no reason to bewail my English preparation. But it was not 
again until the last year that we " college boys " as we were called, 
heard anything more about English. 

In my senior year we took up the reading of the books required by 
the English department here at Harvard for the entrance examina- 
tion. The books that I now remember are "The Abbot," "The 
Merchant of Venice," " Twelfth Night," " Comus," " II Penseroso," 
and " L' Allegro," " Lysias," " Evangeline," " Sir Roger de Coverly 
Papers," " Essay on Milton," and I do not know what others. We 
were given topics from these books to write upon, or sometimes the 
entire book. This was very helpful as it was exactly what was 
required in the examination. I remember distinctly how hard it was 
for me to struggle through Addison's composition on Milton called 
an " Essay." 

In addition to reading the required books, there were incorrect 
sentences to correct. This is a kind of work in which a little goes a 
long way : yet day after day, week in and week out, throughout the 
year, we had our twenty or so sentences to correct. After correcting 
them we were required to hunt through a long list of rules to find the 
one which applied to each particular sentence, and then to put the 
number after the sentence. This method of procedure seemed non- 
sensical to us. We thought we should be given a list of rules, if it 
were necessary to learn the rules, and then sentences to correct by 
them. As we thought we were getting no good from this work — I 
think now that it could have been nearly dispensed with, and advan- 
tageously — we took no interest in it, and often times the work was 
not truly and honestly done. 

This last year's work was all right as a preparation for the examin- 
ations ; but I think it is better to have the drill such as to thoroughly 
ground one in principles. Composition as it is carried on here, that 
is the development of each individual's style, was entirely neglected 
from the result of which I have greatly suffered. 

There has lately been a revision of the curriculum at [my] High 
School. I hope and trust that English has been given a place there, 
fitting to its importance. I think that the work done in English A 
could just as well, yes could be better done, in preparatory schools, 
leaving the time in college to composition courses such as English 31 
and 22. 

No. 8. 

My training in English at [a central Massachusetts] High School, 
where I fitted for college, was confined to fortnightly themes, which 
continued throughout the greater portion of the course. It was not 
connected with any study of Rhetoric or Grammar so far as I can 
remember and the instruction was of the most formal and barren 
kind. No attempt was made to develop originality of thought and 
expression or to stimulate the imagination by the setting of good 
models. It was a dreary, mechanical drudgery, unlighted by a 
single gleam of interest. The subjects, assigned by the principal, 
were stereotyped and prosy " Peace and War," " The manufacture 


of sugar, cotton etc." subjects, which had no human interest to the 
average boy and which compelled recourse to encyclopedeas and 
books of reference, instead of human observation. The results were 
meagre and were what might have been expected, when the narrow 
aims of the instruction are taken into consideration. It ground out 
bo} T s, whose work would rival a good dictionary in vagueness and 
lack of interest. From the High School, I went directly to [an 
interior New England] College, where the prescribed English con- 
sisted of a study of Genning's Rhetoric during Freshman Year. The 
course was conducted by [an instructor who] had some vague glim- 
merings of how to teach English and teach it successfully. There 
were usually class room exercises, at which a student lamp, an oil 
painting, a stuffed hawk etc. were placed on the lecture table and the 
students were asked to write a description in their own words. This 
was varied at times, by a request to write, from memory, a descrip- 
tion of Weston Field, the view of East mountain down the street, the 
last foot-ball game etc. There was no attempt to develop the under- 
lying principles of narration, description and exposition. Indeed 
principles of any kind were chiefly conspicuous by their absence. It 
was the old story of the "Blind leading the blind" and the results 
again were of no greater value than in my preparatory work. 

No. 9. 

My English work before last year does not play a very important 
part in my present status, except probably as preliminary for what 
followed in my direct preparation. We are asked "wherein your 
training now seems to have been good and sufficient." In my case 
that is not difficult to answer ; it has not been good and sufficient at 
all, as far as I can see when applied to my present needs. The dry 
details of the rhetoric I understand pretty thoroughly and I know the 
principles of description and narration but, try with all my power, I 
cannot put them into practice. At the tenth revision of my themes 
they are as imperfect as at first and, when they come from under 
the instructors pen, they are very highly colored. Incoherence, 
awkwardness and point of view are my greatest faults. Whether 
incoherence comes from lack of thought or inability to express 
myself, I cannot say. It is surety connected with awkwardness and 
probably with point of view. All three then come from one cause, 
lack of training and practice. 

No. 10. 

I received my earlier training in English in a little old district 
school far up among the New Hampshire hills. " Lickin' and 
larnin'" was the motto of the much tried teachers. Of "lickin'," 
at least, I received a full and sufficient share. The prim old maid 
who taught me my A, B, C, and the rudiments of English composi- 
tion, was true to her duty and never spared the rod. I was literally 
goaded and beaten along the rugged road that leads to the Elysian 
fields of " larnin'." From the dry and dust} T rules of an old gram- 
mar I was supposed to learn to speak English in its virgin purity, 


The most dreaded task that fell to my lot was what we then called 
" putting sentences up a tree." Long complex sentences were given 
us to analyze and put upon a diagram. I invariably got some clause 
upon the wrong limb of those cursed trees, and never failed to get 
my reward in the form of a dose of extract of birch. I was not an 
assiduous bee, and the honey that I extracted from my clog-eared 
grammar was of poor quality and still poorer quantity. If, as 
Stevenson sa} r s, "Failure is the onl} r high-road to success," I 
ought now to be well along on my journey. 

My next experience was gained at a G-rammar School in [a large 
Massachusetts town near Boston]. About once a month the stu- 
dents here were required to write short compositions, the best of 
which were read by their writers before the class. On every Fri- 
day afternoon our teacher read aloud for an hour from some inter- 
esting book. This was to me the pleasantest hour of the week, 
eagerly anticipated and seldom missed. I gradually lost all taste 
for those "blood and thunder" stories sometimes falsely called 
literature. Guided by my teacher in my choice of books I became 
deeply interested in good literature, and have ever since found great 
pleasure in reading. 

After a year of preparatory work at the Grammar School, I entered 
the High School, where for two years I continued my study of Eng- 
lish. The critical reading of required books was about all of our 
work here. What little writing we did was in the direction of 
poetr}", though our attempts were painfully crude. Sense was often 
amusingly sacrificed for meter, and the latter was always in deep 
subjection to ignorance and small vocabularies. I believe our time 
would have been better spent in trying to write good prose. 

On entering Harvard I expected to make rapid strides in ability 
to write good English, but was wofully disappointed. It seems to 
me that I might as well have never taken English A. Certain it is 
that my year at [the Academy] was more beneficial to my style. I 
believe that I did the work of the course faithfully, but the amount 
of work required was, I think, ridiculously small. The course seems 
to me to be far too easy and elementary for a college of Harvard's 
standing. It should belong to the curriculum of a preparatory school 
instead of to that of a great University. In all my school work, as 
in English A, I believe that far too little practise in writing has been 
required. I should have always been glad to do more writing, as I 
think most other fellows would. 

No. 11. 

It seems to me that the requirements for the entrance examination 
are wholly inefficient as far as composition goes. One gets slight 
snatches of good english works, but reading what others have written, 
does not teach you yourself how to write. It is like watching another 
person use pulling- weights, so that you may get strong. If the 
training gained by daily themes were afforded in preparatory schools, 
the result would be a great improvement of work in college courses. 
By the practice of daily themes, a person gains a readiness in express- 
ing his thoughts. He attains ease and fluency in writing, and instead 


of pouring over a blank sheet of paper, and in vain trying to frame 
his thoughts in good words, he will be able to write with ease and 

No. 12. 

The lack of constant practice in writing, such as I get in College, 
is, to me, the principal defect in m}' former instruction. I was 
taught the abstract theory of rhetoric but I was never shown how to 
put it into practice. Ability to write in the mother tongue is the 
most necessary requirement of an educated person, and it is a pity 
that it cannot be impressed upon the minds of those in authority in 
western schools that that ability is at least as important as the study 
of botany, algebra or Latin. 

No. 13. 

It can be seen from my description, I think, that the English work 
at [the private school in New York city where I was prepared] is not 
thorough. It does not give one any help for the work of the fresh- 
man or sophomore years at College. If more original work were 
insisted on and more frequent work in theme-writing and, above all, 
if it received one half the care given to the instruction in Latin, 
Greek and Mathematics, it might be a fit preparation for college 
English. When I was there it was not. 

No. 14. 

[A Massachusetts city Latin School.] 

I do not think that I had enough training in writing English. I 
did not write often enough to gain any degree of facility^. It seems 
to me that in the last } T ear or two, I should frequently have been 
required to write slight impromptu exercises in the class-room as is 
done in English A. I did not write often enough to have it anything 
less than a very distasteful, laborious task. 

No. 15. 
[A Massachusetts High School.] 

The last year was spent, almost entirely, on the study of Milton, 
with an occasional theme in connection with the work and a review 
of the entire subject. We also studied Addison and read Macaulay's 
essay's on Milton and Addison. 

On the whole, it seems to me that a great amount of time is wasted 
in the study of English (at least in my experience) in the preparatory 
schools. Not one half enough time was spent on writing and into the 
time set apart for that portion of the work so much was crowded and 
gone over so hastily that very little was learned. That is the reason 
why so many students come to College with so little ability for 
correct writing. No doubt our instructors mean well enough, but 
the method is at fault. 


No. 16. 

[A Massachusetts Academy.] 

This was all the English we had during the six years. The time 
spent on it was not nearly equal to the time spent on Latin or Greek. 
The former received by far more attention than any other course in 
school. The longest preparation hours were always given to Latin, 
and the recitation hours always came first thing in the morning when 
the pupils were at their best. 

As a summary of the work in English, I think I can truthfully say 
that I learnt more in writing English from the letters I wrote home 
describing athletic contests and other events of boarding school life, 
than I did from the school work, because they were returned to me 
corrected, and because they were written on subjects which I felt I 
knew all about. 

No. 17. 

[A Massachusetts Academy.] 

So far as I am competent to judge I cannot see that my training at 
sctiool has done me much good. It certainly did not train me to 
express myself easily and naturally on paper, but in order to learn 
to do this a person has to write continually and I cannot see where a 
school can get the time to give to writing, when it also has to teach 
boys enough Latin and Greek and Mathematics to pass college 

No. 18. 

[A New Hampshire Academy.] 

It appears to me that the main thing that a fellow should learn 
before entering is to write good English : after entering he should be 
able to devote himself to literature, which he cannot do as things are 
at present. 

No. 19. 

[A preparatory School in Illinois.] 

It seems to me that the preparatory schools don't have the pupils 
write enough. Daily themes are a bother, a dreadful bother but 
there is not a doubt in my mind that if the daily theme plan were 
instituted in the preparatory schools the pupils would come to Har- 
vard with an infinitely better command of the English language, his 
vocabulary would be broader, his diction more cultivated and his 
style more pronounced. In the schools I have attended the study of 
rhetoric and grammar was severe but the theory was all we had little 
practical application of the theories. No one on earth curses the 
daily theme more than I and yet I know in my heart that it is the 
best plan in the world for developing literary talent. 


No. 20. 

[A Massachusetts city High School.] 

There is no other way in which to learn to write good English than 
by hard and steady practice. A beginner at the piano can never 
expect to learn to play well, until he has practiced and studied for 
hours and even years at a time ; so I do not see how a tyro in the 
English Language can ever hope to be able to write good and Rhe- 
torical English without long experience in writing. 

i^ think that the great mistake in the public schools is the lack of 
English training for pupils, when they are mere children in the 
primary and grammar schools. If the first principles of rhetoric and 
of grammar were taught in the lower grades, so that a pupil would 
be able to write fairly good composition on entering high school, 
a greater success would assuredly be attained in English by the 
freshman classes of the universities and colleges. 

No. 21. 

The next two years I was at the High School, and studied no 
English at all — written grammar nor composition. Preparing for 
college as I was, I naturally took the " Classical Course." Now in 
all the other courses, I am quite sure, English was taught during the 
first two years. We classical scholars were left, I suppose, to get 
our practice in English from elegant translations of Caesar, and so 
much of the Anabasis as could be read during the last two months of 
the second year. Of course this amounted to nothing. All this talk 
we hear, and all we read in gushing school catalogues about trans- 
lating Greek and Latin into good English is nonsense. How is an 
instructor who is interrupting the translation two or three times every 
line, because a tense or a mood has not been given the correct shade 
of meaning, to expect that the translation remember it's own English 
moods and tenses ? I have often heard a good English sentence of 
the scholar reciting, twisted and contorted into a barbarous mess of 
solecisms by the instructor, in order that aSe or an dV might be cor- 
rectly rendered, and that we might see what an exact language Greek 
was. I do not say that in College it is not perfectly practicable to 
give a correct and more elegant translation, but with the average 
school boy, who is taking his Greek and Latin merely for passing his 
entrance examination, and who intends to drop them as soon as he 
enters college, it is asking altogether too much of the instructor that 
he teach English and Greek at the same time. His task is to get his 
pupil successfully through the Greek examination. 

After the High School I was two years at boarding school — the 
last two before coming down here. The school was an Academy [in 
a Hudson River City]. Here they had worked out an exceedingly 
good theory — and printed it confidently in the catalogue — of Eng- 
lish instruction. To read it one would think that English really 
played an important part in the curriculum. [ have no doubt the 
catalogue account was written in all good faith — as we make New 
Year resolutions, before we have tried them — but the workings of 


the system were singular. In my first year I took no English at all, 
and was therefore not able to judge until my second. In the second 
year I read all the books set down in the Harvard catalogue as 
requirements for admission — and no more — and I wrote I think 
perhaps ten themes, or " Essays." These " Essays" were returned 
with a few criticisms, the jist of which was either "good" or " bad," 
as the case went. Why the} 7 were good or bad the criticism never 
told. I do not think the instructor knew, and I am positive I did 

No. 22. 

The training in English that I received before entering college was 
very desultory and unsatisfactory. It consisted in what practice in 
writing I got in the grammar school and academy together with what 
little I got in teaching district and grammar schools. 

As a special student in [a Western] University I went through 
Gunning's Rhetoric but again it was mostly theory. I believe I 
wrote six compositions during the }'ear. I took, while at that Uni- 
versit} r two terms in literature. In this study, I was required to state 
at length my ideas of each book read ; I think this practice was of 
more service to me, in the way of writing, than any course I took 
before coming to Harvard. 

At School and at University I was required to render into fairly 
good English the Greek, German, and French I translated. This 
had, however, only an unconscious effect upon my ability to use 

I never heard of the idea of d;iily themes until I came to Harvard. 
I think if I could have had a }'ear's training in them in my prepara- 
tory training there would not be so much red on themes when returned 
to me. 

The great trouble with m} T training in writing English was lack of 
practice. I am convinced that one ma} T be a giant in theory and at 
the same time be a babe in the practical phase of the matter. 

No. 23. 

[A Massachusetts city School and Connecticut Academy.] 

In view of nry later college work, in writing english, my prepara- 
tion seems to have been lacking both in the amount, and thoroughness 
of correct grammatical construction and punctuation. I usually wrote 
a short composition once in three weeks, and rewrote it with the cor- 
rections explained. It seems to me that the writing should have 
been oftener in order that attention might not fall out of touch with 
the work and that grammatical construction and punctuation might 
be strongly impressed on the mind by a continuous reference to the 
subject. Such a course would have rendered the first half of the 
english A course in college unnecessary. 

My work in reading was excellent but not full enough to be satis- 
factory. For instance, I remember of having spent, at least, four 
months of twenty recitations, e*ach, in reading Scott's "Lady of the 
Lake," committing selections to memory and looking up synonyms 


for words. The training in this was excellent, but it would have 
been far more benificial to in} 7 later work, had I covered more ground, 
even at the risk of being less exact. Then, I thought of my reading 
more as of a lesson in Caesar than of a masterpiece in my own 
language, full of beaut} T . It seems to me that more ground covered 
then, would have given me a more appreciative taste for good reading 
and a better grasp of the language. To hunt up s3 T nonyms in a dic- 
tionary, which are forgotten almost as soon as acquired, is training 
but to acquire a large mental vocabulary by extended reading, which 
renders the use of such a book less necessary seems far more advan- 
tageous. Thus my preparatory' work was a training which has ren- 
dered later writing far more easy, but which, with a little better 
arrangement, might have put me in college at least half a year in 
advance of where I was when I entered. 

No. 24. 

I received in [a California] High School, my training in English 
composition. I must say, at the start, however, that my work, as I 
remember it, seems to have been more in the nature of gaining a 
superficial acquaintance with English Literature, and a knowledge, 
perhaps a little less superficial of the ways of writing English, than 
of real practice in writing. 

During my first year, in High School, the class studied some of the 
more difficult points of English grammar, with a little rhetoric. Occa- 
sionally, we had to write short compositions, which were corrected 
by the teacher, but were not rewritten. Here, I think, was a fault 
at the very beginning. At that age, we got back our written work, 
looked for the grade upon it. and then threw it awa} T . The correc- 
tions did me no good, since I hardly ever looked at them. 

The second year, we were taught, w T ith the help of a very long out- 
line, which we had to learn by heart, the principles of perspicuity. 
The long outline we learned ; the principles we learned to recite, 
much as a child may learn to recite a piece of German, the meaning 
of which he has not the slightest idea. At any rate, that is the way 
I learned them. It was not until a long time afterward, that I began 
to understand the application of the principles. Beside the outline, 
we had some work in books, learning whether the matter therein con- 
tained was perspicuous, or not. Our exercise in writing, that year, 
was rather slight. 

The work of the third and fourth years was on about the same plan. 
Our teacher, a graduate of [a female] college, was an enthusiast, a 
crank, on the subject of outlines. She gave us outlines on per- 
spicuity, outlines on force, outlines on elegance, versification, argu- 
mentation, exposition, and narration, and outlines on description. 
We got to calling her, after a while, "the walking outline." I do 
remember that she once gave us an outline on the best method of 
writing a composition, which we never wrote. We learned what 
things ought to go into the introduction what things into the body of 
the composition, and what into the conclusion. The trouble was that 
we never, to any extent, put these principles into practice. We 
learned their names, -with all their subdivisions, but, being given 


nothing for which to use them, we soon forgot them. We were told 
that certain authors had certain qualities of style. If I had been 
asked to comment upon the style of any author whom we had not had 
in class, I should have been at a loss to sa} r whether he wrote clearly, 
or forcibly, or elegantly, or whether he had none of these qualities. 

I may therefore say that while I learned fairly well the theories of 
English composition, I did not learn how to put these theories into 
practice. I learned what exposition was, but wrote none ; I learned 
what good description was, but wrote none ; and so with all the 
rest. Even though I might have been able to tell the characteristic 
quality of a given author's style, I could not hope to attain to the 
possession of that quality. I am thoroughly convinced, as, I sup- 
pose, is everyone else, who has thought about the matter, that a 
good English style cannot be attained by merely learning what good 
style is, and what authors have that rare possession. The knowledge 
of these things is a good thing, in its place ; but personal practice in 
the difficult art, is, to my mind, what we most need. 

From the results, thus far, of my English composition, here in 
college, I conclude that we should not put off practice in writing, 
until we have learned all the theories, and read all the good authors. 
If, after we had mastered the principles of grammar, we began to 
practice writing, and continued to practice throughout the prepara- 
tory course, we should be far better able to express ourselves, by the 
time we enter college. Coming to think, this is a sort of theory. 
Would that I had had the wisdom to put it into practice. 

No. 25. 

[A Massachusetts city Latin School.] 

The trouble with the instruction in English of the average Ameri- 
can student is that he has no solid foundation as a working basis. 
You cannot expect the subsequent instruction to take root and bear 
fruit when there is not enough soil. I feel sure that at least fifty per 
cent of the fellows entering college are unable to parse correctly a 
complex sentence in English. This simply means that the rudi- 
mentaiy knowledge is lacking. The whole fault lies with the pre- 
paratory schools, where so much valuable time is lost in aimless 
instruction. What business has a college to waste its time in giv- 
ing badly prepared persons instruction in the elementary knowledge 
of the language? The college work should consist of the higher 
branches of English. English A should be relegated to the schools. 
As I have intimated before the reform must begin at the bottom 

No. 26. 
[A Boston private preparatory School.] 

In no way does my preparatory training in school seem " good and 
sufficient" and English A seems to be "defective and to admit of 

English A should be taught in school. In three months an} T one 
of reasonable understanding- can gorge himself with rhetoric. After 


three months there is a cloging of the brain, a distaste and disgust 
of the subject which I think last year was felt by instructor as well 
as by pupils. 

In the preparatory school, a candidate for admission to college 
should be given a knowledge of English literature such as the college 
demands, and in addition to this should know his rhetoric and should 
have ample practice in the application of his rhetoric. English 22 
should be the model for the schools. Though I think that daily 
themes are impracticable there is no reason why there should not be 
weekly compositions with subsequent revision or rewriting. Trans- 
lating the classics is of course an aid to English but a minor one. 

I think that the fault is at bottom with the college. So much is 
required in other branches of learning, that the most necessary one 
is shamefully neglected. 

It is proverbial that Americans visit all the countries of Europe, 
but to them the Yellowstone Park and to the Eastern the Golden 
Gate are unknown. 

Thus in school, a lad pegs away at his Greek and his Physics, and 
graduates with a lack of knowledge of his mother tongue which 
should put to utter shame, himself, his parents, and his teachers. 
But the excuse, and the good excuse is that the demands of the 
college leave only so much time for English and the pupil must 
assimilate it as best he can from anywhere. 

Why not give up making the stud} 7 of Greek compulsory. A man 
in this busy world can get all the classic study he needs from Latin 
unless he chooses to make the classics a specialty. 

This would leave more time for the English which a boy certainly 
needs more than he does Greek. 

Not to offer any more suggestions, it is my firm belief that every 
man should enter college prepared to take a course like English 22 
and prepared to do moderately well in it. 

When he comes to college let him learn to expound and to argue 
and to polish his narrations and descriptions but he should know the 
rudiments of these latter styles of writing. 

I speak strongly but I feel strongly and have many friends who 
like myself resent the indignity paid to our mother tongue in neglect- 
ing it so shamefully. 

No. 27. 

[Three New England public ani private Schools.] 

Considering my training in English before entering college, from 
what I have learnt while there, I cannot see how it did me the 
slightest good. What little I learnt, was sufficient to pass the 
entrance examination with ; so I suppose that nothing more could 
be expected of the schools, as their aim is, of course, to fit pupils to 
be able to pass the examinations for college. Either more should be 
required, it seems to me, or the student should not be required to go 
over practically the same ground again, as he does in English A. 
To be sure he goes over it more thoroughly in college but why should 
he not go over the ground thoroughly once for all, before entering 
college? The ground covered by English A could easily be covered, 


with perfect satisfaction, in the preparatory schools. Proof that this. 
can be done is shown by the number of students entering Harvard 
who "anticipate" English A. So it seems to me that a student 
should no longer be required to do one year's work in two : either 
that his training before entering college should be so thorough that 
it will not be necessary for him to go over the same ground again in 
English A, in his first year at college, or that he should not waste 
his time before going to college in half-doing work that he is required 
to do later. For I consider that the time I spent on English during 
the four years before I entered college was completely wasted : when 
I came to Harvard I had to go over the same ground, which I easily 
could have, and should have, been made to sufficiently cover in the 
four years, — now misspent — preparation. 

No. 28. 

In my five years' study of Latin and three and a half of Greek at 
[a New York Polytechnic School] we were at first required only to 
give a fairly literal translation but, in the last two years of each, 
very particular attention was paid to a good free rendering and a 
correct use of the English idioms and colloquialisms. 

Twice a week during nry last year we read, in class, the major 
part of the requirements for the admission examination in English 
here at Harvard. This exercise consisted in reading and discussing 
each day, ten pages or so which had supposedly been prepared out- 
side — a crime of which I believe I was once or twice guilty. The 
fortnightly themes continued, as they had during the previous five 
years, but subjects were, as a rule, now chosen from books we had 
recently been discussing in the class-room. The only suggestion I 
can remember in regard to the mechanical structure of my composi- 
tions, as a whole, was that at about the middle of the first page, I 
should begin a new paragraph. Neither knowing why this was so, 
nor considering whether the sense required it, I used methodically, 
ten lines down, to start a new paragraph. It was certainly a most 
barbarous suggestion and one that didn't tend to improve my knowl- 
edge of the art of correctly writing the English language. 

Looking back upon my early preparation, I sincerely feel that, 
with the exception of the practice I gained from being made to 
translate the classics freely and in good English, it was a howling 
farce. Spelling and punctuation were the only errors ever cor- 
rected and, as good penmanship was also demanded, these three 
were the only canons I ever attempted to observe. 

No. 29. 

The idea in laying out the course in English in the Preparatory 
Schools seems to be to try the inductive method. We are given a 
great deal of model literature to read in the hopes of having us 
adopt the style of these writers. But the system seems strangely 
inconsistent. If we are to get our ideas of correct and forcible 
English from reading, why do we stop in the Preparatory School, 


and in college, commence to study the rules and theories? College 
should be just the place to do careful work in reading, backed, as 
we should be, by a knowledge of the principles and the foundations 
of English. 

The fault of the preliminary training is the scarcity of written 
work. Compositions were seldom called for, so we missed all help 
of practical work. When I entered college, I knew nothing about 
the requisites for a good theme, even though I had read Addison. 
The trouble is, we can admire no author without knowing in what his 
charm lies. We may say a story is good and yet be ignorant of the 
ordinary laws of the narrative. A few, such as the necessity of 
motion in stories, you are bound to acquire, by induction, but those 
that lie below the surface can be learned only from men whose read- 
ing has been a hundred times as wide as yours. v 

From what I have said, it is hardly necessary to express an opinion 
of English A. It does seem strange that the rudiments of Latin, 
Greek, French and German are required, though the elements of 
English are to be taught in college. 

No. 30. 

I studied English for two years [in a New England Academy] 
before entering college : our course was interesting enough ; we 
read books ; looked over Mr. Hill's rhetoric occasionally ; dis- 
cussed plots of stories, and received all the pleasure possible, but 
we received no practical power in using the language. We read 
plays from Shakespeare, sketches from Addison, Marmion by Scott, 
and a great many more good things, but, through all the time, we 
had no compositions or writing of any kind. The whole story is 
this — the first part of our course, — we might say, — was given up 
to seeing what other men have done ; the last part, — the extreme 
end — was given to preparing to correct sentences, likely to be given 
on Harvard examination papers, and no time at all was taken for 
seeing whether we really could do anything for ourselves or not. 

Classics were carried on for the classics, not for English. In Virgil, 
true, we sometimes were asked to write out a translation into good 
English, and were marked accordingly, but on the whole, we were 
allowed to translate into student dialect, so long as the meaning fol- 
lowed the Latin or Greek, as the case might be. French and German 
were carried on the same way, now and then, our instructor took a 
stand on good English translations, but soon relented, and fell back 
again to the old way. 

No. 31. 

My first training in English, I received at [a school in Texas]. It 
consisted of one theme each week, the subject left to the writer's 
choice. As we corrected these themes ourselves, and as our teacher 
never took the trouble to glance over any of our work, I am afraid 
my first training was rather superficial. The school, however, was a 
small one, and every Friday afternoon, each man had to read his 
theme before the rest of the scholars. 


This method, though somewhat peculiar, in spite of its many dis- 
advantages has some very good points. No one likes to make a 
laughing stock of himself, and the cases where a student would stand 
up before all his associates, and disgrace himself by reading some 
miserable excuse for a theme hurriedly and carelessly written, were 
few and far between. So self-respect was usually a sufficient incen- 
tive of a good, sensible and thoughtful piece of writing. If it was not 
self-respect, it was a wholesome fear of our master, who felt no 
scruples in wielding a hickory switch, and whose brawny right arm 
was always equal to the task. 

Of course, as practically no attention was paid to the mechanical 
part of the work, such as punctuation, spelling and paragraph 
arrangement, that was always faulty, but in the main, the substance 
of the themes was good, and, as far as I noticed at the time, con- 
tinually improved in quality. 

I next attended [a private school, in New York City]. There I 
met with the same system of weekly themes, only these were care- 
fully looked over by the instructors, and carefully corrected. But 
attention was paid chiefly to the mechanical part of the work, and a 
theme whose punctuation and spelling were good ranked higher than 
one whose substance was infinitely better, but which was lacking in 
other respects. I remained in this school three years, and though 
under the very best instructors that could be obtained, I don't think 
I made much progress. I learned where to put a comma, and where 
to begin a paragraph, but I don't think that constitutes a training in 
writing English. 

But, what I consider the chief fault in the training I received, is 
the fact that L never had more than one theme a week to write, which 
I think entirely insufficient, as it is my idea, that nothing less than 
carefully prepared themes every or every other day, of different 
lengths, and on widely different topics, can give the practice that is 
needed, to write good English. 

No. 32. 

[A Massachusetts city High School.] 

My work in English, both in composition and, especially, in litera- 
ture has been neglected, seemingly for the reason which I have 
already noted, namely, that I would have all I needed in college. I 
believe that the rules of English construction and the ability to detect 
errors is of the utmost importance to everyone who expects to write 
even an occasional letter, and absolutely indispensible to the business 
and to the professional man. 

That year, past without any specific practice in the art of writing, 
was certainly a detriment which was increased by daily encounters 
with un-English constructions in the Greek and Latin, litteral trans- 
lations of which were so often allowed, that I have not yet been able 
to lose them entirely. 

The fortnightly essays were not only not numerous enough, but 
the course in which the chief benefit might have been derived was 
not followed : re- writing was not required. 


The principal aim of the preparatory school seems to be to get men 
into college without conditions, no matter how they fare afterward. 
As far as entrance requirements demand, the preparatory school is 
very scrupulous, beyond that, it refuses to act. Otherwise this most 
important item in every man's education would have been treated 
with more consideration. 

No. 33. 

[A New Hampshire Academy.] 

My whole preparatory training in writing English, as shown above, 
was wholly profunctory. All the instructor had on his mind was the 
entrance examination. He talked of nothing else aad would inform 
us of this and that, that would please or displease the instructor. 
The thought of what we might gain or lose after the examination, I 
do not think ever entered his head. This was not his fault by any 
m.>ans but the fault of the faculty. He was placed there to try and 
make a lot of fellows pass an examination who previously had had 
no training in writing English whatever, and a year is an exceedingly 
short time to accomplish that in. The examiners were very lenient 
of the English on the papers so the school itself did not suffer much 
from this difficulty. The school now I believe has given the study 
of English more thought so now the fellows come down properly 
prepared for their future studies in that subject. 

No. 34. 

The great fault of the Preparatory School is that it simply prepares, 
and does not lay a permanent foundation for knowledge. I was often 
told at [the New Hampshire Academy where I was prepared] : — 
u Now, this is simply to make you ready for the examination, you'll 
probably forget all about it afterwards." 

No. 35. 

The training which I received before I entered College in writing 
English was so in adequate that I may almost say I had none at all. 
I had been sent to a School [in New Hampshire] , and outside of 
writing letters to ury family, I don't think I ever put pen to paper to 
express how I felt or what I thought on any subject. The year I 
was to take my preliminary Examination for Harvard I left the 
school and being ill I had a tutor. He did not think it was wise to 
take up English. As he considered the time spent on other studies 
of more advantage. In reply to a protest from my family he said, 
" The Harvard Examination in English is really extremely easy, it 
requires very little time for preparation." 

Consequently I had no training in English until the year before I 
entered College. For my last year I was sent to [a private preparatory] 
School in Boston and here we had one resitation a week in English 
in which our themes of one page in length of the proceeding week on 
subjects taken from the prescribed books were criticized. I remem- 
ber I had twenty hours of resitations a week, that is one twentieth of 

. 442 

my time was spent on English, and why? Because no more time 
was required to pass it. 

Now this seems to me to be at the bottom of the whole trouble. 
To the average fitting school teacher the standard of the world is the 
passing mark in the entrence examinations. These men have learned 
by experience where to put the time to make it show, and have found 
English requires no more study and consequently give no more time 
to it. This state of affairs can to my mind be easily changed by 
requiring a higher standard at enterence, what is now required by 
English A. 

No. 36. 

I received my first training in English at [a Massachusetts city] 
Latin School. In my first year there I studied Chittenden's English 
Composition and also read Scott's Lady of the Lake. In the second 
and third years, I read Longfellow's " Evangeline " Scott's " Marm- 
ion," Irving's " Tales of a Traveller" and " Shakespeare's " As you 
like it." In addition to reading these books, the class was required 
to write three ten minute compositions a week on subjects given out 
at the time. These subjects were many of them outlandish, for 
example, "He was a mean old miser," "Times when it is hard to 
talk," "Thanksgiving at the poorhouse" etc. How can a scholar 
sit down and in ten minutes write a story on a miser, or what does 
he know about the celebrations in an almshouse unless he has been 
there himself, which is not likely ? The scholars at last refused to 
write on such subjects and then were allowed to select their own 
which was more satisfactory. The criticisms of the compositions 
were not helpful, and as the pupils were not required to rewrite the 
themes very few, if any, paid any attention to the corrections and 
consequently did not improve in st}*le. The teacher herself could 
not have understood the subject any too well, as after one boy had 
handed in a theme deliberately copied from one of Emerson's essays, 
it was returned to him covered with such corrections as "poor," 
"bad order," "poor constructions" etc. The fourth year we had 
no English at all except the "Journal of the Plague year" to read 

No. 37. 

[A private preparatory School in Boston.] 

As I think of it now I am alarmed to think how little attention was 
paid to English at school and what is more I hold this lack of atten- 
tion to be particularly prevalent at private schools, which simply put 
enough into a fellow and barely enough at that, to ensure his getting 
into college. How much more knowledge than this he acquires is a 
matter of no importance seemingly. 

How English is dealt with at the big Public Schools I cannot say 
but I certainly hope that action will be taken in the near future to 
require more knowledge of English than was possessed in my day, a 
lack which showed itself not alone in English composition but in 
translation some of which was execrable, which might have been 
expected from street Arabs. 


No. 38. 

Any person who has followed the lines laid down [at the private 
school in New York city at which I was prepared for Harvard] 
should have no difficult}" in passing the entrance examination in 
English. But the mere passing the examination does not mean that 
the student is fitted to enter the course known as English A, and this 
is where the school makes a great mistake. She does not consider 
the welfare of the pupil after he has left her doors. Her main object 
is to teach him enough English to pass his examination, and then she 
gracefully drops him, and he has to fight his way through English A 
without knowing a great deal about the work. This is the most 
glaring fault of instruction in schools, and it applies to many studies 
other than English. • 

No. 39. 

[A Massachusetts city Latin School.] 

The fifth year was spent in preparing us for the preliminary exami- 
nations. As English was not one of them they considered it as a 
secondar} r subject. The only English we had was the reading of 
some of Shakespeare's plays. Although we were continually being 
warned not to make such blunders in our sight translations and that 
our papers would not be accepted over at Harvard if they contained 
such English. 

Finally in the sixth year the} T tried to make up for lost time in 
teaching English. They seemed to teach it to us for the sole pur- 
pose of making us pass the examination, because they continually 
used examination papers as references and they said all the time that 
we must do this or that if we expected to pass the examination. 

No. 40. 

[A Massachusetts city Latin School.] 

It seems to me that the all pervading idea at the school was not so 
much to give us a lasting knowledge of the English language, but 
rather to force enough of the rudiments of the language into our 
heads so that we should be able to pass the examinations for Har- 
vard. When we made a mistake in anything the teacher would say 
that they marked this very hard at Harvard ; instead of merely telling 
us that it was bad English. 

No. 41. 

[A Massachusetts city Latin School.] 

I think that the training I received was as good and thorough as is 
possible for a schoolboy to receive profitably. The greatest stress, 
by all odds, was laid on grammar, — though certain percentages of 
the mark depended on Style, Penmanship, etc. — and on certain 
points of style dear to the Harvard instructor's heart, such as the 
cleft infinitive. We were drilled on this until we could detect one at. 
first glimpse. 


No. 42. 

In general I think, from what I have seen myself and from what I 
have heard of other schools, that in no school in Boston is enough 
attention paid to English or sufficient time given to it. The two 
schools which I have attended give, I suppose, about the best instruc- 
tion in English of any, but even here it is awfully weak. 

The fault seems to me to rest greatly with the College, which 
scarcely demands a sufficient preparation in English. It seems to 
me that the plan of publishing the English examinations with the 
names of the schools from which their writers came, is an excellent 
idea and would do much to show the utter incapacity of certain 
schools as regards any intelligent instruction in English compositions. 

If the schools could be compelled to do the elementary work which 
is done in English A and Freshmen could be saved the waste of time 
caused by sitting through some 50 utterly stupid and uninteresting 
lectures on Rhetoric, which could be easily condensed into half that 
number, it would be an excellent thing. More practice in writing 
English should be given in English A. 

No. 43. 

Most every college man by the time he has taken one or more 
English courses has been greatly impressed by the wide breach 
between the study of English in College and that of the preparatory 
schools. The greater number of us began our English education in 
some public school where great attention was paid to the study of 
grammar but little practice was had in writing English so that when 
we went to a high school or a preparatory school we were like men of 
theory dropped into a world of practical people. 

My experience in writing English before coming to college was 
derived mainly from two schools [in a large New York city]. I had 
no practice to speak of in writing English until I reached the third 
grammar grade. I remember that three short selections from the 
works of Irving and Tennyson were read to us and we summarized 
the reading. We were thoroughly drilled in grammar and were 
always corrected for the slightest mistake in pronunciation or gram- 
mar in our recitations but we lacked practice in writing English. As 
a result, in our examinations it was always extremely difficult for us 
to express ourselves and our work was thus hampered greatly. 

No. 44. 

Out of eight years of elementary schooling and four years of High 
School instruction, in [a Massachusetts city], I remember but two 
years practice in composition. During the last two years in the High 
School, I wrote compositions, some on my own subjects, others on 
the different books required for College preparation. That was all, 
probably an average preparation in small cities. A certain small 
cousin of mine who goes to a public Boston school is required to 
compose on specified subjects. Her age is seven. From the amount 


of work, I have seen her do, and from the result of her labor I am 
convinced that it is a mistake to require such work from very young 
pupils. But I am sure that two years preparation for College is 
hardly adequate. It is enough fitting for English A in this Univer- 
sity, but English A work should have been covered before the College 
course is begun. Surely the elementary principles of Rhetoric should 
be almost as second nature to a scholar before the age of eighteen. 
Nearly all students at Harvard, have been prepared at prominent 
Academies. In these Academies, the principles of rhetoric are 
thoroughly discussed. Even I, in my poor High School, became 
well versed in the teachings of the charming Mr. Strang, and others. 
I believe that I could have clone English 22 work last year quite as 
well as this and so could the other students also. 

Daily themes are beautiful practice. I really can think of no 
method of teaching composition writing which is as efficacious as this. 
I can see myself, boiling with rage, as I would have been had daily 
themes been required, when I was in my preparatory school, but I 
wish they had been required. I always had to write themes upon 
books. What good did it do me to write a composition based upon 
Macaulay's Milton? If I had not been an enthusiastic reader of 
fiction and if I had not kept up a correspondence with numerous 
people, I believe I should not be able to express my ideas even with 
the smallest degree of fluency. 

I consider the chief faults of my training insufficiency of amount 
and quality of work required, inadequacy of time, erronical notions 
of the kind of exercise best suited for training. 

No. 45. 
[A Hudson River city Academy.] 

In the entire course of six years, I do not recollect having written 
any composition longer than one page, with the single exception of 
my oration at commencement. However, influenced by the Harvard 
system of daily themes, [our instructor] set us to writing short narra- 
tions or descriptions two or three times a week. The composition of 
these themes seldom occupied more than fifteen minutes. In the 
course of the year the practice was given up entirely. 

[Our instructor] frequently attempted to justify this disregard of 
written work in English, by asserting that the average boy had noth- 
ing of any importance to say, and that as soon as he did begin to 
develope ideas, the words and the form would come to him spon- 
taneously. On the other hand, [our instructor] always laid great 
stress upon the value of Latin and Greek in giving one a grasp of 
the English language. To Latin and Greek, then, and more especially 
to Vergil and Homer, we owed all that we ever knew about English. 
This was no small item, however. I am sure that we all in a modest 
way came to feel the finish and the grandeur of Vergil in contrast to 
the deep power and simple beauty of Homer. 

As it was, on entering college I found myself, when put to the task 
of giving expression to my thoughts, not only at a complete loss for 
words but also in complete ignorance of how to arrange them effec- 


tively when I had found them. I am sure that this was not because 
I did not have any ideas to express, but rather because of my 
inability to put them in vivid and accurate form. 

No. 46. 

I had very little training in writing English till I went to [an 
Academy in Massachusetts], in 1889. While there, I had a good 
deal of English Composition, and had a good deal of practice inci- 
dentally in writing letters etc. During my last two years I wrote for 
the school paper. I received the usual instruction for elementary 
English for admission and also prepared for English A which I was 
able to pass before entering. 

As regards work in College, I find that it has in every way been a 
great advantage to me to pass off English A before entering. This 
preparation for the examination in English A gave me such knowl- 
edge of English composition as every freshman should have. More- 
over it put me a course ahead of the rest of the class as regards 
English, and I was enabled to take English 22 in nry freshman year, 
and after that to take English C two years in succession, without 
getting behind the rest of my class. English A is much too ele- 
mentary a course to be taught in Harvard college. It is a disgrace 
to a civilized community that men of eighteen }'ears of age or so 
should be obliged to take such an elementary course. And yet the 
need of it is only too apparent. Some freshmen even fail to pass 
English A in their first year, man} T do poorly in it, and most of them 
show by their ignorance of the first principles of English composition 
that they need some such course. The fault lies with the preparatory 
schools. In many of these the training in English composition and 
grammar is a mere farce, and this is shown by the entrance examina- 
tions in English. Now the reason that the preparatory schools offer 
such poor training in English is that the knowledge of English com- 
position required by the Harvard entrance examinations is very slight. 
The entrance examinations in English should be made more difficult, 
and this would necessitate the introduction into the preparatory 
schools of better and more thorough methods of instruction in Eng- 
lish. English A, or its equivalent should be required for admission, 
and there should also be in the schools some elementary course in 
composition, on the plan of English 22. Many of the best schools 
are working in this direction now. Every year more and more men 
pass off English A before entering, and in some schools all the 
bo} T s are required at any rate to try the examination in English A 
and are trained for it, and most of them succeed in passing it. The 
system of instruction in English composition was very good when I 
was there, but it was perhaps not quite thorough enough. However, 
I believe the standard has been raised since I entered college. 

No. 47. 

For me to make any statement which might detract seemingly from 
the gratitude which I always am bound to feel toward those instruc- 
tors of the Latin School [near Boston], to whom I owe so much 


would be both against my purpose, and contrary to my duty. Ever 
since I met Harvard methods as displayed, peculiarly I believe, in 
the English composition courses, I have been more and more con- 
vinced that something more was possible for my preparatory school. 
The defect in the system of teaching English Composition lies rather 
in the direction of quantity than of quality. 

The training in writing English was given in nry last two years. 
Not that we did not study our language during the previous three, 
but there was nothing done towards systematized composition. And 
now what did we do in those two years? Our first duty being to 
make ready for the Harvard examination in English, we gave our 
attention chiefly to the literature prescribed for us by the college. 
Each week, however, the class was asked for a theme, for the writing 
of which an hour was given. We wrote usually upon our reading, 
but considerable attention was given to individual thought, and 
never, I believe, were we expected merely to summarize. For 
example, I find among my old themes these subjects: "Barkis is 
Willin'," " David's Mother," "The Character of Brutus," and many 
such, requiring both a knowledge of the book represented, and some 
power of literary inspection. 

For this sj'stem, as we enjoyed it during two years, I have only 
the highest praise. A stress was laid upon our language which was 
beneficial in every way. We were required to write our translations 
from Latin and Greek — one of each of which we had every week — 
in correct English. Our Latin instructor encouraged us even to 
translate Vergil at sight into English verse, — an undertaking at 
which several of the class were unusually successful. 

I have given as best I could, an idea of the actual written work in 
English, as we did it. As far as it went it was excellent ; I com- 
plain only that it did not go far enough. 

Five years are given to Latin, three each to Greek, French, and 
German. That these studies are overdone no one but he who believes 
foreign languages a nuisance will maintain. There seems to me no 
reason, however, for giving more attention to these tongues than to 
our own. I believe that a course of practical, actual, work in writing 
English should extend through the whole five years. That this is 
practicable no one can deny, since our class gave two years each to 
ancient History, Algebra, and Geometry, either of which many pupils 
have taken in one. I remember that during our second year we 
covered the whole ground of Greek and Roman History, only to go 
over it all again during the fourth year to prepare for the preliminary 
examination. Certainly the time thus practically wasted might pro- 
fitably have been given to a course in English Composition. The 
fact that but one out of a class of thirty five got honors at the 
Harvard examination, is evidence enough that more English, and less 
ancient History if necessary, would avail much. 

Our school has always borne a record, at the entrance examination, 
second to none. In Greek, Latin, and Mathematics, her students 
have a preparation which none can call insufficient. Is it not a 
defect then, that her record in English is low? Surely were the 
training in writing English up to the standard of that in writing 
Latin and Greek, the Harvard examinations would be met with far 


greater success, and the students would be better prepared to meet 
the somewhat chilling and overpowering atmosphere of the composi- 
tion courses of the college. 

Let me add in justice to whatever changes may have been made 
during recent years, that five years have passed since I was a member 
of one of the three lower classes at the Latin School [in question}. 

No. 48. 

During the last eight years before I came to college I went to 
school at [an Academy in a city of Eastern New York]. My first 
two years there I had practically no training in writing English — at 
least so far as I can remember. After reaching the Academic, or 
upper, department of the school, my training in English composition, 
even up to graduation, was extremely meagre. I imagine that it was 
intended to have it much more comprehensive, but English was 
always made secondary to the classics and to Mathematics. The 
sentiment seemed on the whole to be "Do your Latin and Greek, 
your Algebra and Geometry, your French and German well, and 
then, if you have any time left, it might be well to write a little 
English." The time, however, rarely came and the English usually 
went unwritten. 

During my first two or three years in the Academic Department, I 
had, if I remember rightly, a very little class room exercise and in 
addition intermittent demands were made on me for the much dreaded 
"composition." These compositions were only written once in a 
great while. Moreover, although mistakes in Grammar were marked, 
the compositions as a whole were not criticised and we were not 
required to re- write them. 

During my last three years at school, my training in English was 
scarcely more full. Latin and Greek translations were occasionally 
written out and these were supposed to be in good, forcible English. 
A translation, however, is not by an}' means a sufficient exercise in 
writing English. During this latter period of nry school education, 
long themes were practically never required, although in my sixth 
form year I had to write and speak an oration at Commencement 
and was obliged to write a preliminary oration for practice. It was 
during my last year at school, also, that the system of writing five or 
ten minute themes on current topics or on daily experiences was 
introduced. This work, carried on under the direction of a young 
Harvard graduate, was on the same plan as the daily theme sj^stem 
at Harvard. It was good so far as it went, but was not held 
frequently enough. 

During my last few years at school I also had some " unofficial" 
experience in writing English in a debating club and on a school 

When I look back upon it now, my English training at school 
seems to have been entirely insufficient, if not, indeed, almost 
ignored. The training in English composition that the average 
school-boy receives is almost disgraceful. It is time that the old 
idea of sacrificing one's own language to the Classics, to Mathematics 
and to foreign language should be done away with. English com- 


position should be made one of the most important subjects in a 
school curriculum, for the training a boy receives in that subject will 
tell more in after life than that of almost any other study. 

As soon as a young boy has learned to spell and has acquired the 
rudiments of Grammar, he should be required to write themes. 
These should be criticised by a capable instructor and rewritten by 
the student. This work should be kept up until a boy graduates. 
The requirements should be raised every year and in his last year 
themes such as are required in English 22 should be written. A boy 
should also study the principles of rhetoric for his last two or three 
years. In short, the work of English A should be done in the 
Preparatory Schools. This will scarcely be brought about unless the 
colleges demand it, for school teachers are only too willing to be 
contented with getting their boys into college well and then to leave 
it to the college to atone for their sins and brush up the neglected 
part of a boy's education. A determined stand by Harvard, requir- 
ing boys to pass entrance examinations in English equivalent to the 
examinations given in English A, would, as usual make the other 
American colleges follow suit and thus force the preparatory schools 
to pay such attention as they should to the much neglected English. 

No. 49. 

[A New Hampshire Academy.] 

I think the work of English A should be taught and taught 
thoroughly in the Preparatory Schools. By thoroughly I mean that 
it should be taught not to pass the entrance examination, but that the 
scholars should know the rudiments of the English language. I 
spent some six or eight years studying greek and latin, studying the 
grammar, learning all sorts of arbitral-} 7 rules and yet I only studied 
english grammar one or two years when I was too young to under- 
stand it. At school I had a recitation every day in Greek and latin 
and only once a week in English. I would increase the number of 
the English classics to be read for the entrance examination. This 
would not only cultivate the scholar's mind and give him a taste for 
good reading but would prepare him to take some of the many literary 
courses in college. These, which I consider some of the best courses 
offered to the student, are now often neglected by students in college 
because they never acquired a taste for good reading. 

No. 50. 

[A New England High School and Academy.] 

I think it is necessary then, in the first place, in order to raise the 
standard of the College entrance examinations in that subject, putting 
them on an equal footing with the classics and mathematics. It 
seems to me that it is a good deal more essential that a man be 
intimately acquainted with the elements, at least, of writing and 
speaking his own language correctly and intelligently, than that he 
be able to conjugate a Greek verb or memorize a French fable. 


When the college insists, by raising the standard of their English 
entrance examinations, that the preparatory schools shall lay more 
stress upon that subject, then, and only then, I believe, will the fitting 
schools raise the standard of English in their curriculum. 

When this shall have been done, as I hope it will, before many 
years, there will be no need for such "prep-school" courses as 
English A in college work. Then, when a man comes to college, he 
will have a good foundation in a knowledge of the principles of cor- 
rect writing and speaking, and will be ready to enter at once upon 
the more serious English courses. That would surely benefit the 
college as well as the preparatory school. The time and instruction 
devoted to such courses as English A and even English B or 22 can 
then be devoted with advantage to more advanced courses, and gen- 
eral good to all concerned will follow. 

No. 51. 

My preparation for college was made entirely at [a Massachusetts 
city] Latin School, and the work, as far as I can remember it, was 
about as follows. There were the usual preliminary exercises in the 
correction of faults in grammar ; they took the form both of oral and 
written tests and of class-work at the blackboards, the work being 
all based upon Hill's Rhetoric, although the latter was not used as a 
text-book. There was besides, occasionally, critical study of bits of 
standard English prose, as to their "correctness, perspicuit}', pro- 
priety, and force." Written summaries of parts of the literature 
required for admission to college were also exacted at certain inter- 
vals, as well as compositions of medium length on various subjects 
connected with the books read. 

But by far the most valuable, in my opinion, of all the training in 
English, was that, in what was called " daily themes " although in 
reality they came only three times a week, in the regular English 
hours. The first fifteen or twenty minutes (if I remember rightly), 
of each recitation were devoted to the writing on any subject which 
we might wish of a short theme, the length of which was never to 
exceed one page. These were corrected, handed back, and revised 
or rewritten by the student. By this means, habits of observation 
were greatly encouraged — there was, I believe a proviso that we 
should write on no subject that had come to our notice more than 
twenty-four hours previously — and some ease in handling language 
was acquired. More than any thing else in my preparatory school 
instruction, I think that this was instrumental in bringing about the 
transition from the crude and clumsy school-boy's st}de to the ease 
which comes from work in the " dailv-theme courses" at Harvard. 
If these " daily themes " could be made really daily themes — could 
be written every school-day in the year, or if not that, every school- 
day for a considerable part of the year, — I believe the results would 
be even more beneficial. It seems, moreover, that by the adoption 
of some such method as that used at Harvard, by which themes 
are written outside the classroom — this plan would be entirely 


No. 52. 

The training that I have received in English composition before 
entering College has been very limited. I don't believe that all the 
compositions ever written by me before entering college, if I could 
recall the number, would amount to a dozen ; that is strictly in 
regard to English composition. 

I prepared for college at [a New Hampshire] Academy. 

The way this professor, taught English while there, was in the 
following manner. He compelled the members of the classes, which 
came under his jurisdiction, to commit long passages from various 
reputable authors, whom he would select ; at other times we read 
various of Shakespeare's plays with comments. 

When we discontinued reading Shakespeares's plays, we were given 
a book with a large number of incorrect sentences in false syntax and 
when we came into the class-room we were called upon to correct 
them in a mechanical sort of way, without being questioned why we 
made the various corrections. Now since I have entered College, I 
see where that training I received, was not the sort I should have 
been taught for nry subsequent work in College. 

The training I should have received should have been almost iden- 
tical with that I am getting now. During my course in the prepara- 
tory schools I should have been compelled to do more composition 
writing, in order that I might now be able to express my thoughts 
with much more ease. Instead of that, I am taking a course at 
present in English which should have been learned before entering 

No. 53. 

I received my training in English composition in [a Massachusetts 
town] public schools, the grammar and high school inclusive. I 
cannot with any amount of accuracy speak of my training in the 
grammar school, but will speak briefly of my high school training. 
The course which I followed was a three years course, known as the 
English course or Business course. 

The school committee have made a rule to the effect that there 
would be two compositions a term to be written. Thus there are six 
compositions written a year. It is very evident that one cannot 
receive a very extended knowledge of English composition when so 
little composition work is required. The corrections upon these 
compositions are mainly of errors of spelling and of punctuation. 
The corrections which are in vogue at college should be followed 
exactly. Therefore I would consider it a great improvement if more 
attention was shown composition work both by the school committee 
and by the teachers themselves ; English composition is of such vital 
importance in college that it should be duly considered in public 
schools which prepare students for college. 

Even in the short time I have been at college I have felt forcibly 
the need of a more extended preparation in the theme work. Now 
it is evident that the school which I have attended does not give a 
preparation required, therefore it is the duty of the school board to 
have English taught in a manner which will enable the student to 


carry on the work when he arrives at college. Do not understand 
me as in any way reflecting upon the ability of my teachers, but upon 
the incompetency of the school board. 

No. 54. 

[The High School of a city of Western New York.] 

The instruction in English that I received while preparing for 
college was varied and of different degrees of merit. I am inclined 
to think that the most valuable training of all was my experience as 
editor of our high school periodical, which always was "hard up for 
copy" and accordingly provided me with much experience in careful 

In the light of my experience at college, I should say that my 
preparation was deficient, not in quality but in quantity. There 
should have been more instruction in Rhetoric. For those who had 
little or no outside practice in composition, the amount of writing 
done certainty must have been insufficient. I think time was wasted 
in what was called "Outward execution," in the perfecting of the 
ornamental appearance of our compositions. Perhaps it might be 
said that too much was taught by precept and too little by example. 
I do not remember a single instance when an admirable turn of 
thought or manner of expression was held up before us as an example 
of what master- writers can do and learning writers should try to do. 
But on the whole, much progress was made by all and few mistakes 
were made by the teachers in charge. 

Perhaps I can do no better in closing than to quote from an article 
which appeared in the high school periodical recently, written by a 
member of the faculty who is a Harvard graduate. He is rather 
more tart in his criticism of the present system that I should be 
inclined to be. He begins : 

" Doubtless, the poor pupil who writes a composition regularly the 
night before it is due has an unspeakable contempt for the invention 
of language and the discovery of duty. For the wretched specimens 
of writing now handed in as " compositions " there are many causes, 
most of which point to guilt on the part of the pupil, while the funda- 
mental cause (involving nearly all the other causes) is inherent in 
the present system of teaching the subject." 

He then proceeds to review present conditions, characterizing the 
system of teaching now in use as too " spasmodic " and closes with 
this statement : 

' ' To write clearly at least and forcibly if possible is of the first 
importance ; and the way to acquire clearness, strength and ease is 
to keep "everlastingly at it." Composition should be raised to the 
dignity of a full course with daily compositions and daily exercises, 
. , . such a course is surely a necessity of the immediate future ; for 
the colleges and the world at large . . . are . . . sure that there is 
somewhere in the system of teaching composition at our secondary 
schools a great defect." 


No. 55. 

All my work in composition preparatory to college was done in the 
High School at [a city in] Minnesota. 

The training in English, as a whole, was thorough ; what was 
lacking was practise in writing, in getting thoughts upon paper. The 
whole object of the work was to give us thoughts, and incidentally to. 
show us how to express them. The course required four years work 
in English, or eight terms of one half year each. The first half year 
was devoted to composition pure and simple. For the next three 
terms, or rather two, for very little work was done the second term, 
the works of several authors were studied, and no writing was done. 
The third year Rhetoric was studied from several text-books, and 
gave opportunity for something like twelve compositions. During 
the last year, the course corresponded to English 28 in Harvard, a 
review with outline of English Literature with a stud} T of character- 
istic works of authors who represented their time. Probably ten 
compositions were written in this course. Expression was also 
studied, and an essay was delivered before the school by each senior. 
Before graduation, another essay had to be filed. 

In all four years, English was balanced against the other work. 
But the balance was not kept in the English itself. The work in 
English seems to me to have been good, and better than that of the 
ordinary preparatory school. The great fault was that the work in 
composition, in actual putting on paper the results of the rest of our 
work, was weak, and this weakness is what one feels first and most 
strongly when he enters college. 

No. 56. 

My work in English while I was in the High School [of a Massa- 
chusetts city not far from Boston] was so limited in its scope that I 
can easily remember it all in detail and in a few lines can describe it 
completely. The first } r ear, English was prescribed for the whole 
class. The work consisted of studying, or attempts at studying, 
twice a week, single sentences of bad English out of a little primer- 
like book with grej' covers. We read those sentences with all their 
absuwl and improbable errors in punctuation and grammar, and then 
read them with our own corrections ; next, we improved on our cor- 
rections ; and then again, and again, the following week we reviewed 
those same sentences until they were harrowed into our brains. I 
still have hateful recollections of flashing streams leaping down 
hillsides, of turbaned Turks seated on colored mats and smoking 
long-stemmed pipes, of Lord Collingwood on the stern of his flag- 
ship ; other pictures equally relevant swarm before my mind's eye. 
If there is a single bad sentence in a certain elementary English 
book that I cannot raise to the last degree of perfection, it is not for 
lack of assiduity on the teacher's part. 

The " college section " of the class now enjoyed a well-earned respite 
of two years from the study of English — a period of relaxation more 
agreeable to the young student's blissful ignorance than profitable 


to his literary style, as this composition abundantly proves. It is 
only fair to say at this point, however, that all the rest of the class, 
the "regulars," had provided for them excellent English courses; 
in the second year, Rhetoric, and in the third and fourth years, 
English Literature. The College section could not be included in 
these courses because of their extensive preparation work for college. 

In our Senior year, we of the elect resumed our acquaintance with 
the Queen's English ; and sad to say, this year's work, prescribed 
by the colleges for admission was exactly the same as our first year's 
work. We had to operate once a week on monstrosities of composi- 
tion — artificial monstrosities, too — and to correct grotesque punctu- 
ation. The most curious and interesting thing about this work was 
that we did not have to review the sentences the next week. Besides 
this, we read the prescribed books, essays and pla3 r s of standard 
English writers, and the prescribed amount was so large that our 
first year's experience was not repeated ; indeed, we read so fast that 
we thought of nothing more than remembering the narrative or plot 
long enough to write a connected account. 

With this preparation in English I entered college. 

As I have thought over my High School work I have not been able 
to see any chance for material change so long as preparation in 
Greek, Latin, Mathematics and Science is delayed until schools 
enter the High School. Beyond question, to my mind, however, the 
first half of the first year in High School should be a review of Eng- 
lish s} T ntax as studied in the Grammar School ; for strange as it may 
seem, syntax is very soon forgotten, and in learning a new language 
the High School freshman is unable to apply the simplest rules of 
grammar. A teacher of French and German told me recently that 
she always spent the first week or two of the freshman year in review- 
ing English grammar, as experience had taught her that scholars 
could not learn French and syntax at the same time. 

After syntax is mastered, there should be training in English com- 
position, but our High School, and probably many others, cannot 
crowd it in with college work ; yet it is evident that English study 
should be continuous through the four years, if for no better purpose 
than to counteract the bad effects of oral translation. Think of a 
Harvard freshman translating " Homo barba imissa in forum incur- 
rit," " a man rushed into the forum with his beard which he had let 
grow ! ' ' 

With the exception of a weekly theme, based on a part or the 
whole of the reading for the week, during the last year, composition 
was utterly neglected ; a fact which I have bewailed a great many 
times. There seems to me to be no possible hope of improvement 
until some of the college preparatory work is begun in the Grammar 

No. 57. 

[A Massachusetts city Latin School.] 

The more advanced, or literary, side of composition writing how- 
ever was greatly neglected. I remember distinctly receiving the 
highest mark possible for a piece of work the only value of which 


was that its punctuation, paragraphs, spelling etc, were without 
errors, while the style was forced and unnatural, the wording con- 
ventional and the arrangement stereotyped. That my work had these 
latter faults I did not realize at the time for I had not been taught to 
avoid them. It seems to me that the laws of '* good use " and the 
other parts of rhetoric which ;t English A" took up in Freshman 
year should have been taught at school for I was as capable of 
understanding them then as a year later. Moreover a fault cor- 
rected early is more readily forgotten than if allowed to take deep 

No. 58. 

[A Massachusetts city Latin School.] 

The great weakness of the English training at the Latin School 

was its hastiness. Mr. , whom I have mentioned above spent 

most of his time. upon Latin, and although he insisted upon decent 
English in translations, he could do little more than frown upon posi- 
tive blunders. 

Like nearly everyone else, I have my opinion of what ought to be 
done for ante-collegiate training in English. The press of work in 
the Latin School, where English got all of the very slight attention 
that could be spared from the weightier matters of preparation, abso- 
lutely prevented any thorough work in English composition. No 
more time could well have been spared from other studies to English, 
and I feel that the teachers did about all that could be done in insist- 
ing upon careful translation. The trouble seems to me to lie in 
making English count for so little in the admission examination. 
After all, } T oung men go to school to pass the college examinations, 
and if English composition counts for one sixteenth of the required 
preparation, it must not expect to get a quarter of the students 
attention, — and it must get something like that quarter if it is to be 
what the Harvard Faculty demands of it. 

No. 59. 
[A Radcliffe College student.] 

When in the course of human events it became necessary for me 
to study my native language, my eldest sister began the arduous task 
of drilling into my unwilling mind the first principles of English 

Now, according to my sister's ideas, children ought not to be given 
homeopathic doses of anything ; this would, of course include English 
grammar, and most rigorously did she carry out her principles in my 
particular case. I was given large, unsavory doses of English early 
in the morning, at stated intervals during the day, and an extra 
allowance for my evening's -delectation. 

This course of treatment continued, with my mother's sanction, 
until my life became a burden. But as I grew weary my sister's 
courage increased. I was given long extracts from Milton's " Para- 
dise Lost" to parse; and even now the sight of Milton's poems 
sends cold shivers dancing up and down my spinal column. 


This system of cramming was carried out in my other studies aud, 
distasteful as it was to me, it had the desired result, for in the course 
of time I passed my examinations and entered the High School. 
Here was to begin my real study of English, the foundation for 
which had been so carefully laid. Here I was to acquire that knowl- 
edge, by means of which I should become famous ; for so my sister 
said, and had not her word been law to me? However I found that, 
whatever else might have been his ambition, the master's aim was 
not to turn out famous literary men and women. 

In many of the shops in our village was displayed the sign : " Ici 
on parle Francais." In our school, however, it was not necessary to 
tack up in a conspicuous place the sign " We do not teach English 
here." It went without sa} 7 ing. 

From the first morning I entered High School till the beginning of 
my last year, the study of English was shunned as if it were an evil 
thing. Then, according to a time honored custom, there came an 
awakening which was to our school what the Renaissance was to the 
Middle Ages. 

Following in the footsteps of our predecessors we, members of the 
senior class, must write compositions, the number not to exceed four, 
and these compositions were to be read before the school. In the 
choice of subjects we were allowed a very wide range, but the num- 
ber of compositions required seemed to us planned with the four 
seasons in view, so, at least two thirds of all the compositions 
were written on the seasons in succession, beginning always with 
"Autumn." When it happened, as it did in my class, that the fourth 
paper was not required we were sorry we did not begin with " Sum- 
mer, being perfectly sure we could have written the veiy best paper 
on that interesting subject. 

These papers were returned to us without mark or comment. This 
then was my experience in writing English before entering Radcliffe, 
about nine pages of theme paper, written at intervals of ten weeks, 
without previous instruction, with no directions in regard to the writ- 
ing, and no comment upon the work when finished. 

If a part of the time that I was required to spend in digging out 
Greek roots had been devoted to the study of English I should not 
now be struggling with "English A" That I am doing just that 
thing seems to me to be a " good and sufficient " proof that my pre- 
vious English training was very defective. 

No. 60. 

[A Radcliffe College student.] 

I realize now what criticism means and how much I have lost by 
not having had criticism. My work has always been marked excel- 
lent and no particular fault has been found with it. Now when my 
themes return to me, bespattered with red ink, marked "Frigid," 
"Conventional," "Wordy," "Not Specific," "Awkard," "Pathetic 
in its Ineffectuality," I know that my work is not up to the new 
standard, and I cau only set to work in a sort of despair to submit 
some new effort to pitiless criticism. Of course it is only by cutting 


that a tree can hope to bear good fruit, but I suppose it hurts the 
tree to be cut. 

I cannot quite tell what has been inadequate in my training. Per- 
haps a course in English literature would well take the place of the 
list of books in the college requirements, for pupils in the so-called 
" college course" in our preparatory schools know almost no English 
literature, and in fact little beside the college requirements. Then 
there should be much more original work, all of which should be sub- 
jected to a really good criticism. I think if I had had some such 
preparation back of me, I should not feel so " pathetic in my inef- 

No. 61. 

[A Massachusetts city High School.] 

The study of English composition as conducted there was not very 
thorough although equal to that of the average High School. Monthly 
exercises were called for which were returned corrected to be rewritten 
but the corrections as I remember them were more in regard to punc- 
tuation, spelling and grammar than to general technique or excellence. 
The importance given to the subject was not such as it deserved. 
Regularity of work was called for but the marks given were not re- 
garded as important as in studies like Greek, Latin or the mathe- 
matics. They occupied a position as regards their weight in the 
make up of the monthly " report cards " about midway between the 
marks of the courses just named and the marks in what is called 
4 ' deportment." The teachers I had in this branch of study I am 
utterly unable to recall. The Principal of the High School has made 
great improvement in the study of English composition especially 
since so much has been said within the last few years concerning the 
poor training of the average college undergraduate in this branch of 

The importance of the study of English composition as a fine art 
is wholly misunderstood. We study literature as we study the works 
of Greek art or of the period of the Renaissance. The study of 
composition goes a step further. The study of literature is helpful 
to the one who wishes to master composition but in composition we 
apply our own hand to the marble and the brush. If proper atten- 
tion were given to it, it might become our great national art of 
expression. Before it can ever become so however, it will have to 
be considered not of secondary but of primary importance in ele- 
mentary education. The Greeks would not have attained so perfect 
a literary expression if they had devoted less attention to their own 
language than to Assyrian or Egyptian but that is practically, in 
principle, what we are doing. 

No. 62. 

I prepared for College at a private school in Boston, where I studied 
for six years. In all these six years I had only two years' training in 
English. The year I entered the School I studied the English gram- 
mar. The name of this book I have forgotten, but I can distinctly 


remember its appearance. It was a book about three-quarters of an 
inch thick, six inches long and four inches wide, bound in a reddish 
brown cover, and the edges of the leaves were colored a bright red. 
From that year until my last year at school, that is, during a period 
of four years, I received no instruction whatever in English. 

During m} 7 last } T ear at school I prepared for the entrance exami- 
nation in English. The preparation consisted in reading the required 
books, and writing a two to four page theme once a week, on some 
subject taken from the prescribed books. The only purpose of this 
composition work, was to enable me to pass the examination in En- 
trance English, which I did, with a D. This then was the only pre- 
paration and experience I had in writing English before I came to 

During my Freshman year I took English A, I took English B my 
Sophomore year and English C last year. How well I remember my 
literary struggle and seemingly vain efforts of my Freshman year. 
How I blamed my preparatory school for not giving me a better 
grounding in English. It seemed sometimes as if it were impossible 
for me to write good English. At the midyear I received a D. The 
second half-year was somewhat more encouraging. I seemed to have 
more facility in writing English and I think I must have continued to 
improve up to the end, for I received a "C" for the whole course. 
The next } T ear, by dint of steady hard work I got a C in English 5, 
and last year I got a C -\- in English C. 

I think the whole reason why I have not done better in English 
composition at College, is on account of my training at school. One 
year of English Composition before entering College seems to me 
totally inadequate. How can a fellow who has had so little experience 
in writing English, be expected to write well when he comes to 
college? I think the course of English composition at preparatory 
schools should be increased so as to include the English A of Har- 
vard. If that were done by a good course, of say three years' 
duration, a fellow would enter college well grounded in the principles 
of Rhetoric and English Composition, whereas now, the majority of 
the fellows who enter Harvard have no idea whatever of these 

But until the requirements in admission English are arbitrarily 
raised so as to include the present course English A, and thus com- 
pel the preparatory schools to furnish the required preparation, those 
schools will continue to send fellows to college who know just enough 
English to "scrape through" the present examination in entrance 

No. 63. 

[A private School, New York City.] 

In the light of my college experience I should say that what my 
preparatory training in English should have given me, but did not 
give, was a reasonable amount of fluency in expressing myself on 
subjects wholly within my knowledge and understanding. This was 
due, I think, mainly to a lack of practice in writing. In grammar 
and spelling I was, on the whole, adequately drilled, but of sj'stematic 


training in the writing of English I had little or none. The isolated 
compositions required were a considerable tax on my mental powers, 
but helped me little to express myself in writing. The subjects were, 
as a rule, far too ambitious and difficult of treatment. It ma} r be that 
I had a tendency (which, however, should have been suppressed) of 
choosing the most difficult out of a long list of alternatives. 

Why could we not have had simple subjects, chosen mainly from 
our other subjects, or from daily life, definitely assigned to us at fre- 
quent and regular intervals, say once every week ? This would have 
given us fluency of expression, without requiring spasmodic efforts of 
a superhuman kind. Why could not our English teachers have adhered 
to the simple principle that the scholar should be taught to express 
what he already knows well, in good English, rather than to be forced 
to express what he knows ill in bad English ? 

No. 64. 
[A New York city private School and Massachusetts Academy.] 

The trouble with all preparatory training that I have ever heard of 
was that it made out of that study which should be the most direct, 
the least complex — the art of self-expression, an affair of heavy 
topics childishly discussed, of attempts at grown up thought and 
modes of expression, of dictionaries and daubed fingers. 

They were moreover, too long and too infrequent. The boy has 
nothing to say at length, and the boy becomes a prig if forced to. 
But he is sure to see things, and may be counted on to do it. The 
only possible training that it seems to me would do us any good at 
that time, is, either a daily theme sort of thing — a resume of a reci- 
tation, or of the walk to school — prescribed before hand, short, 
never rewritten, and if bad, read before the class ; or the transcrib- 
ing from dictation of standard prose. This latter would be death to 
half the boys but for those few who knew or were going to know, 
the great method. 

My subsequent training has shown me that I am completely lacking 
in any coherence or even sequence in my ideas. If the place that 
took up all my working, and the best hours of the day, my school, 
had given me any outlet for what ideas I had, for the things that I 
wanted to talk about but never did for want of time at home and 
opportunity at school, if the school, I say, had made me write one 
firm sentence a day I should not have come up here in a state in 
which you cannot tell the bubblings from the soup. 

No. 65. 

The training I received in writing English preparatory to entering 
college was so brief as to leave but a very indistinct remembrance of 
it in my mind. As I look back [the master of th-3 private school in 
Boston, from which] I entered, seemed to have had the idea that, all 
of his scholars being gentlemen, they knew the King's English. All 
his methods of teaching were founded on the very a