||Science and the making of Victoria
Table of Contents
Inaugural and Anniversary Addresses of the Royal Society
Inaugural Address, delivered by Mr. Justice Barry, President of the Institute, at the Opening Converzazione, 22nd Sept., 1854
Inaugural Address of the President, Captain Clarke, R. E., Surveyor-General, &c., &c.
Anniversary Address of the President, the Honourable Andrew Clarke, Captain R. E., M.P., Surveyor-General of Victoria, &c., &c., &c.
Anniversary Address of the President, His Honor Sir William Foster Stawell, Knight, Chief Justice of Victoria, &c., &c. [Delivered to the Members of the Institute, 12th April, 1858]
Anniversary Address of the President, Ferdinand Mueller, Esq., Ph.D., M.D. F.R.G. and L.S., &c., &c. [Delivered to the Members of the Institute, 28th March, 1859]
Address of the President, Ferdinand Mueller, M.D., Ph.D., F.R.G. & L.S., &c., &c. [Delivered to the Members of the Institute at the Inauguration of the Hall, January 23rd, 1860.]
Inaugural Address of the President, His Excellency Sir Henry Barkly, K.C.B., &c., &c. [Delivered to the Members of the Royal Society, at the Anniversary Meeting held on the 10th April, 1860.]
Anniversary Address of the President, His Honor Sir William Foster Stawell, Knight, Chief Justice of Victoria, &c., &c.
[Delivered to the Members of the Institute, 12th April, 1858] (continued)
I do not know the reason why, but, perhaps, it originates in the matter-of-fact disposition which is our main characteristic, Art, instead of following, precedes science. Observe, for example, the Exhibition, and look at art as compared with merely scientific institutionsthe one is regarded as a subject of the greatest interest by the people whilst the other is only tolerable. It is not so in other countries. In Germany, for instance, the savans are satisfied to promote science for the purpose of eliciting truth and making discoveries in their various branches. But, with an Englishman, unless you can bring home to him the conviction that it is of some practical advantage, he will do little more than tolerate it.
Surely, gentlemen, science should precede artand not art, science. Surely, science, instead of pointing out some discovery, brought out by some mere manipulator, should itself point out the mode in which the particular principle might be applied to the particular object. If, gentlemen, that principle is true at home, is it not with tenfold force true in this country? Assume that all such were based on scientific prinples, I ask what would be the probability of success? I need not enlarge upon those influences, for I have already alluded to them, though briefly.
Look at education, as applied to the youth and to the adult. To the adult, what salutary effects it must produce; it will show him how little he knows and how much remains to be known. What docility and what patience it will require to convince him that amongst the few grains of truth which lie has acquired, there is all extensive sea of error. How much better, therefore, he must be prepared to make allowances for all the errors of his brethren, when he is capable of recognising his own. Observe also, gentlemen, the influence which it is likely to exercise in unfolding the works of the Creator himself, and the praise which, in prosecuting these discoveries, he is involuntarily offering up to the Creator, in the truths which he is unfolding to the world.
Gentlemen, I proposed to have said much more to you, but I feel that, for an inaugural address, instead of writing, I have trusted too much to memory. I thank you for the patience with which you have heard my remarks, and for the honour conferred upon me, as well as the manner in which you have received the toast with which my name has been couples. I trust that when I shall be rendering up an account of my stewardship, you will think I am deserving of as enthusiastic a reception as that which you have now been good enough to accord me.
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