Page images

free discussion. It was proper that the the great men who had been in India Constituent Body should keep a check since that time, that the conduct of their upon the Executive, of which he bad affairs was comparatively play. Lord the honour of being a member. (Hear, Cornwallis, Lord Teignmouth (who was hear!) It was the duty of the Executive bred up in the Company's service), Lord Body to watch over the conduct of every Wellesley, Lord Minto, Lord Hastings, department of the service; and if they neg came to the head of governments, already lected that duty, he trusted the General possessing great and matured talent in their Court would call them to account. He civil servants; to the command of numethanked the Hon. Proprietor who had rous well-disciplined armies, led on by opened the debate, for the clear, able, and officers of great skill and experience, fit argumentative manner in which he had to contend with any troops in the world : introduced the question. He thanked the they had, therefore, in full development, mover and seconder, and also the other all the elements requisite to support tbeis gentlemen at whose requisition the Gene governments, long before the establish, ral Court had been summoned, for their ment of Haileybury College. In respect candour and fairness, in being willing to to the college itself, the question never leave the question to the deliberative cou had been, as some might suppose, whether sideration of the Court of Directors. Be there should be education or no edufore he proceeded further, he must advert cation, learning or no learning; he to what had fallen from an Hon. Director agreed, all agreed, that their civil servants near him, and also on the last day's debate, should be well educated men. When, from an Hon. Proprietor high in the twenty years ago, the college was first probenches, whose father (Mr. Twining) they jected, cau by theory and speciousness, had often heard with much pleasure in he was one of the warmest advocates for that room, greatly to the advantage of the it: but the experience of eighteen years Company, viz. that the able manner in that the college had existed, during which which their affairs were conducted in In time he bad kept a vigilant eye upon it, dia, was owing to the servants sent from had greatly shaken bis opinion. He felt Haileybury College. Lest an erroneous great obligation to the gentlemen who impression should be made upon the Ge. had signed the requisition which led to the neral Court, he distinctly controverted present debate ; he felt strongly tbe able this assumption, and asserted, without and fair arguments with which the motion fear of contradiction, that of the able, had been supported. It was fair to ask, honourable, and upright men who now was the education at Haileybury superior formed the Governments of Bengal, Ma to what might be obtained at other places? dras, and Bombay (he alluded to men In regard to European knowledge, no bred up in the Company's service in one could reasonably contend that it was. India), not one man had been educated at Originally it had the advantage in respect Haileybury. He would take a brief re to oriental literature; but since its institu. trospect of the Company's affairs in India tion, this has comparatively greatly lessenfor about eighty years, when an able and ed. There are now in this country many ambitious Frenchman (Monsieur Dupleix) men, who had been long in India, able projected the establishment of extensive and willing to teach the oriental languages. French dominion in India. The plans of There are now men in England, and he the French and their allies were ably and believed also in France, who have never successfully opposed by the then Com been out of Europe, and who are conpany's servants. From that time to the versant in oriental literature. There are conclusion of the peace with Tippoo in great distinctions between Haileybury and 1784, a period of forty years, was many all other colleges. In the first place, the an arduous struggle: during that time of college at Haileybury is not subject to difficulty and danger, had they not emi what all other colleges, and all places of nent men, who demonstrated their capacity education throughout the kingdom are exto conduct their affairs, on every emer posed to, the pou erful, though silent operagency, in the most brilliant and successful lion of public opinion. Parents are forced, manner, long before Haileybury College whatever may be their opinion of Haileyhad been thought of? Even Adam Smith, bury, to send such sons there as are desno friend to the India Company, which he tined for the civil service in India. This did not very well understand, or he would compulsion, which no where else exists, have written differently respecting it—ad. is in itself a great error, which he thought, mitted that the counsels of the Company's in its consequences, most injurious to the Government's would have done honour to operation of proper discipline. Another the best days of Greece or Rome. Let distinction between Haileybury and other them divide the space of eighty years to colleges is, that in other colleges there is which he had glanced, into two parts, and a gradation of ranks, from the head to the look for a moment at the last forty years, under graduates ; there are private tutors, viz. from 1784 to 1824 ; he must say, who form a strong connecting link between without meaning any disparagement to the graduates and under graduates. Pri

vate tutors cannot be had at Haileybury. Mr. R. Jackson, upon the point of orAmong the under graduates at other col- der, said that if the argument of the Hon. leges are many, who look not only to the Gent. who had last spoken was tenable, honours, but also to the lucrative benefits they could not proceed with the present of the college, which are very considerable debate. What was it, but to tell that in many of them. At Haileybury, there Court, “you shall not discuss the merits is a wide chasm between the professors and of the system of education carried on in students; and when the young men had your college, unless every professor is passed their four terms, they went for ever present, and you know not one of them from the college, and it became to them can be present?” and this in a question officially as nothing. Now look into the when the principal point turns upon the natural effects. No one can doubt the due discipline of the place. employment of time to be essentially re The Chairman submitted to the Hon. quisite in the education of youth : see Gent. (Mr. Bebb), whether he felt him. how time is employed at Haileybury, a self quite in order, in referring, as matter point on which he spoke from records, and of open record, to presumed negociations not from private information. First as or correspondence supposed to have taken to the professors; the examination of the place between the College Committee and qualification of students, on their coming to the Professors. the college, might take three or four days; The Hon. D. Kinnaird said, that unless the examination before the end of a term, the Hon. Gent, was permitted to pursue about a fortnight. Attendance at morning the line of argument from which he was and evening prayers took little time; there interrupted, there must be an end to the was also attendance at dinner; but the discussion : he only glanced at what the chief time in which the professors and professors had done, to illustrate his genestudents came in contact, was at the lec- ral argument of the evils of the system. tures. At these, some of the professors He (Mr. Kinnaird) would therefore in. were employed four times a week, viz. treat the Court, in behalf of the profes. two hours in two days, leaving the rest of sors of the college, who would be placed the week to themselves. Some were em, in a most uncomfortable condition, if this ployed five hours, and some nine hours; question could not be discussed without the assistant professors ten hours in the putting them entirely out of view, to hear week. With regard to the students; in the Hon. Gent.'s argument, and particuthe two senior terms each student attends, larly upon a matter of fact ; for be must for four days in the week, two hours each deny that there was any personal imputation. day; and some attend, for two days, three Sir G. A. Robinson.“ Was not amor hours each day : in the two junior terms otii a personal imputation ?”. each student attends, for five days in the Mr. Pattison said that it was a duty week, two hours each day; and for one which he owed to the professors of the day, three hours. The lectures are over, college to state, that in all his corresponfor some students, by one o'clock, and for dence with them, at the time alluded to, the rest by two o'clock; from those hours such a notion as love of ease was never until nine at night, excepting a short time assigned by them, nor fairly attributable at dinner, the students are left to them to them, for the part they took. They selves. The age at which the students go distinctly said, that they could not adopt to the college, is generally between sixteen the suggestion submitted to them, conand seventeen; none under sixteen. Can sistently with their view of the good of it be expected, that at such an age they the institution ; but in all their communi. should, like monks, retire to their cells to cations they expressed a readiness to make study ? Left to themselves for so many every personal sacrifice which might be hours, they will naturally seek to amuse deemed necessary to promote the instructhemselves. This he deemed an essential tion and welfare of the college. defect in the college system. So sensible Mr. Bebb denied that he had spoken were the College Committee of this waste from any private information. of tine, that they proposed to the profes In continuation he asked, what was sors that evening lectures should be given. the consequence of allowing such a stock This proposal was strenuously resisted, of time, which might be convertible by and when at length reluctantly acquiesced students for purposes of amusement ? Il in, the professors said the responsibility was almost necessarily attended by exmust rest with the committee. The pro. pense and extravagance. So sensible were posal interfered with the amor otü.

the Court of Directors of this, that in Sir G. A. Robinson rose to order. He July 1815, they made the following obsaid that he thought there was something servations on the personal experises of the due to the feelings and character of the students : professors, who were absent, and he wished “ Unnecessary and extravagant expense, hat, in candour and fairness, the Hon. unless effectually checked, is likely to Gent, would confine himself to his argu- prove a great and serious evil to the Eastnent, and refrain from personal allusions. India College. It has already, in various

instances, produced pernicious effects: it cient to see, that if the amount of my is immediately connected with, and pro- debt was advanced me at 5 or 6 per cent. motive of, disposition to idleness, dissipa- interest, it would be paid off in about tion, and other immoralities.

half the time it would by letting it remain “ This is an evil which the discipline of as at present. any public institution can with difficulty, “I suppose you have the East-India and but imperfectly combat.

Register, or list of civil servants on this “ Regulations have been made for the establishment. I have it by me now, and counteraction of it, and might be, in a for example's sake will give you the real good measure, effectual, if the parents and amount of the finances of the young men relatives of the students would heartily I knew at Hertford and Fort William ; join their endeavours to promote the ob- for we are all too much in the habit of servance and efficacy of them.

comparing our situations with one another, “ But the mischief does not rest here. not to know perfectly the affairs of our The taste once indulged for expense, is colleagues. It is, of course, between our. not limited to the pocket-money, even selves. I will take a number of forty profusely furnished. Debts are contract. writers, beginning from and ending ed, sometimes to an enormous amount; with all of whom I know, and whom tradesmen dishonourably ministering to I will divide into four classes, viz. the extravagance of youth, and trusting, “ 1st. very much involved; 2d. much perhaps, to what they often find true, that involved; 3d. not much involved; and parents will silently submit to pay these 4th, not involved. improper debts, rather than suffer their “ The first class I consider to be in debt children to be exposed.

from £3,000 to £10,000; the second class “ But neither is this the limit of the from £1,000 to £3,000; the third from evil. Example is infectious : the dissi- £100 to £1,000; and the fourth entirely pation in one produces imitation in others; free, and worth a little money. Out of and even sober youths, who desire to prac the above forty writers, eighteen are in the tise economy, become ashamed of it, first class, eleven are in the second class when they see so many glory in overleap- (in which I include mysell), eight are in ing its bounds.

the third class, and three are in the fourth * It need hardly be observed, that in class; which calculation, if it errs at all, proportion as this temper prevails, the love errs on the favourable side, in perhaps of study and virtuous habits, subordina- putting one or two in the third class, who tion to the rules of the college and to the ought to be in the second class. This I governors of it, must decline. ·

fancy has been pretty nearly the case, in “ Thus the very end and design of the proportion, among every forty after being institution is counteracted, and, so far as in the country four years.” these evil tendencies prevail, frustrated.” This letter was written six years after the

Anxious as the Court were to prevent date of the resolution of the Court. Mr. extravagant habits, the remedies proposed Bebb said he did not trust to this informa. were not likely to be effectual. Uncles tion alone: it was corroborated by a letter and other relatives or friends, who knew from the son of a particular friend, who not the resolutions of the Court, would arrived in Calcutta last year, and who often give a young man a present on his wrote to his father, " they” (meaning the leaving them. Tradesmen would trust, in writers) “ are all in debt. He (Mr. the hope that either a young man's friends Bebb) had also received a letter, dated last would pay their bills, or in a confidence that August, from a young friend who arrived the young man would himself, at some fu

last year at Bombay, a place formerly ture time, pay them. What were the conse noted for economical habits, saying, the quences of the extravagant habits acquired at writers of four years' standing are all much Haileybury? He would shew them, in an in debt, and pay 9 per cent. interest, and extract of a letter, which was written from 5 per cent, insurance on life. He would India, by a young man who had been ask, what were the probable consequences educated at Haileybury, and who, being of men being so deeply involved? That deeply involved in debt, had written home men, otherwise honourable, would seek for assistance, stating that his debt for in- to extricate themselves by undue means. terest and insurance on his life cost him They might say,

my poverty, but not my 16 per cent. Mr. Bebb said he would not will consents." This might produce dismention names, that he might not give honour and ruin to themselves, and lead pain to fathers, or families, or relatives. to extortion, and distrust of the natives.

" Lest you should, however, imagine He felt a warm regard for the natives of that I am much worse off than my co India, among whom he had passed twenty. temporaries in pecuniary matters, I can seven years of his life, and was sensible of assure you I am not. The only difference their many good qualities. He regretted is, that instead of writing you word that the caluinnies propagated against them in I am going on swingingly, I tell you the this country-calumnies that were the offplain truth; and I am calculator suffi. spring of á jaundiced eye, and of strong

prejudice. He must refer to the statute of parents or guardians, or of persons selectselection, and speak of it with unqualified ed by them, than at Haileybury. Mr. reprobation. He read the clause he al- Malthus, a gentleman of high literary reluded to, as follows:

putation, in his statements respecting " In case of any gross act of insubor. the college published in 1817, labourdination, the author or authors of which ed to impress a belief that students went cannot be discovered, the council shall out with economical habits, and for that select from the body of the students among purpose bad quoted the opinion of Lord whom the act took place, those who, from Minto in 1810; but it must be recollected, character and circumstances, are most like that very few young men had then arrived ly to be concerned, and of those so selected, in India who had been educated at Haileyeither the whole or a part, according to the bury, for that college had only opened in discretion of the council, shall be imme. January 1806. Mr. Bebb said he must diately sent from the college, not to be remark on another passage in Mr. Malthus's recalled until the actual offenders shall be statement. Mr. Malthus says (page 103) discovered, or until the council, under all “ the system of the college is, I really becircumstances of the case, shall think it lieve, what it ought to be;" and then adds, right to re-admit the whole or any part of in a note, “ little other change is wanting, them."

than that an appointment should be conThis clause, he observed, was worthy sidered in spirit and truth, not in mere of the Spanish Inquisition. It was a dis- words, as a prize to be contended for, not grace to the Executive Body; it was a a property already possessed which may be disgrace to the President of the Board lost. If the Directors were to appoint who approved of it; it was a disgrace to one-fifth every year beyond the number them as Englishmen. He himself shared finally to go out, and the four-fifths were in the disgrace. He felt deep remorse that to be the best of the whole body, the aphe had not recorded his dissent to it; but pointments would then really be to be conit might be pleaded as some palliation of tended for, and the effects would be adhis conduct, that he did not conceive in. mirable. Each appointment to the college nocent persons would be selected (ac. would then be of less value: but they cused) for the purpose of inducing a young would be more in number, and the painan to give information; of information tronage would hardly suffer. A Director be possessed against, perhaps, his dearest could not then, indeed, be able to send friend; or of abusing the generosity of out an unqualified son. But is it fitting youth, by extorting confession from an that he should? This is a fair question offender, lest innocent persons should suf for the consideration of the Legislature and fer. He knew not in whose mind the the British public. He (Mr. Bebb) must clause had been engendered; but had the condemn the idea that one-fifth of the young times been such as those of bloody Mary, men nominated for the civil service were, it might be presumed that mind would after giving up four or five years of have suggested the application of the rack an important time of life (for that to extort confession. The spirit and hu would generally be the case) turned adrift manity of the age do not admit the appli- upon the world, “ where to seek their cation of torture to the body; but the place of rest.” The proposition, he would clause, with wonderful ingenuity, has con say it to Mr. Malthus's face, was barsh trived to torture the minds of youths. He and cruel : it strongly marked a severe referred to the cases of the students in spirit in the College Council. The in1822, when seven youths were driven from sinuation conveyed in the words, that “a their service, for mere boyish, thoughtless Director could not then, indeed, be able tricks and pranks, deserving reprehension, to send out an unqualified son: but is it it is true, but not to be punished as they have fitting that he should ?” is an unworthy been. He deemed the youths to have been

He (Mr. Bebb) must in justice to treated with unjustifiable severity ; nor was the Court of Directors say, that their his opinion in the least altered by the leading object is, to send oul young men duly decision of the visitor on the appeals made qualified to conduct the Company's affairs, to him. He must say, borrowing an ex. ably to discharge the important trusts herepression from a letter before the Court, after to be committed to their hands, and to that to " unjustifiable severity” (the visi- promote the welfare and happiness of the tor) “ had added unwarrantable bitter. natives of India. He stated, that when he ness.” He (Mr. Bebb) held it proper that left India in 1800, he conceived it would, their servants should not only be well edu on an average, require thirty years before a cated, but that they should be young men civil servant could return with a compeof good moral conduct and prudential tence from India, putting out of the queshabits. He submitted to judgment, whe tion those who, from ill-health, might be ther young men were not generally more forced to return permaturely, and those who likely to be formed to good moral conduct might acquire fortune by inheritance, beand prudential habits under the eye of quest, or marriage, or successful coma


mercial concerns unconnected with the derstood him to express his gratitude to Company. But, in consequence of the the Hon. Proprietor who had introduced habits acquired at Haileybury College, he this question, for the candour, the fairness, reckoned it would, on an average, take the good temper, and good feeling, with forty years, computing from the time a which he had debated it; and, adverting to civil servant entered the college, before he the remark which had been made by several could return, supposing all other circum speakers, that discussions like the present stances to be the same. If a man returned tended to produce injurious consequences, at the age of forty-six or forty-seven, he Mr. Grant observed, that he should feel would retain vigour of mind and strength less reason for deprecating such discusof borly adequate to enable him to enter sions, if they were always brought forward in this country into active life.

He might

and conducted in the tone and manner re. become a Proprietor of East - India stock, commended and exemplified by the Hon. and deliver his opinions in this room; he Mover. might, if the Proprietors pleased, be He had, in the course which he was placed behind the bar. But if he return. about to take, a sacred duty to perform, and ed at fifty-six or fifty-seven, the advance of he hoped to discharge that duty without years and effects of climate, would render passion or prejudice. Upon some parts of him little fit to be a valuable member of the subject, however, he admitted that active life. He candidly subscribed to the there were recollections, which disqualified opinion expressed by the Hon. Mover of him from exercising that calm and disthe question, viz. that the proposed change passionate judgment which it throughout of system would improve the management demanded. These recollections, however, and discipline of the college itself. It doubly imposed upon him the obligation of would enable the professors to remove a refraining from the use of irritating topics, young man with whose conduct they might of abstaining from every thing like unfairbe dissatisfied, without ruining his pros ness or exaggeration, and of confining pect for life; they could thus early check himself to the task of setting forth, in the the seeds of disorder. They could say to plain colours of truth, the inerits (as he a youth, “ we are not satisfied with you, viewed them) of the question before the your example is contagious: it is hurtful Court. Indeed, with his impressions upon to others; return from this college, and the whole subject, even an unanimous vote qualify yourself for the Company's service, in favour of the college would not content at such other places as your friends may bim, if he did not believe it to be proselect." On the other hand, it would nounced with an impartiality, which, for enable a parent who might in his turn be himself, lie no longer even pretended to dissatisfied, who might think his son did fecl. He must observe, however, that not make due literary progress, or that he even if he concurred with the Hon. Morer was acquiring expensive or dissipated in disapproving of the system now estahabits, to withdraw him, and place him blished for the education of the civil serwhere he might be better attended to. At vants of the Company, he could by no the college, under the present system, he means assent to the motion before the has no effective controul over his son; Court. Believing, as he did, that the subwhatever cause he may have for dissatisfac stitute proposed by the Honourable Mover tion, be cannot withdraw him without would, if adopted, be found ineffectual, he blasting bis prospects. By the proposed could not possibly agree in recommending change, all parties will be benefited. He that substitute to the adoption of Parliahad honestly delivered bis genuine opinions, ment; on the contrary, if he referred any and he respectfully submitted them to the question at all to the Legislature, it must judgment of the General Court; whatever be a much wider question than that which might be the final issue, he was convinced seemed to be contemplated. The Hon. good would arise from the discussion. He Mover seemed to think that they had only earnestly entreated every parent, every to go before Parliament to submit the guardian, who had a son or ward intended simple alternative which his motion emfor the Company's civil service in India, braced. But what reason had he to supwho was anxious to preserve his morals, pose that Parliament would circumscribe and prevent his acquiring dissipated, ex its consideration to that alternative? The pensive, and extravagant habits, and who real inquiry before Parliament would be, anxiously wished for his return home be whether the present system was the best; fore he was a worn-out man, to support and if yot, then the general question, the question before the Court. He hoped what other system ought to be established it would be carried, and a change be in in lieu of it? This was the issue they consequence effected in a system which must prepare to join before they applied to produced great evils.

Parliament on the subject. (Hear!) No Mr. R. Grant addressed the Court, but matter in what terins they sent up their was for some minutes so inaudible that we question, the actual deliberation of Parcould not hear his observations. We un. liament would be directed to the general

« PreviousContinue »