||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.]
Inaugural Address, delivered by Mr. Justice Barry, President of the Institute, at the Opening Converzazione, 22nd Sept., 1854 (continued)
Are there not, however, other attractions besides those emphasised by utilitarian argument capable of luring us to such an enlightened species of amusement; to the devotion of a portion of that leisure left after the performance of our sterner duties, to prepare us for the perception of a more refined description of intellectual recreation than we have hitherto had within our reach?
It is too common to treat Science as ascetic and austere, and deny to her the ability of unbending to animate and to please. You recollect the enthusiastic apostrophe of the poet, who exclaims, with a greater generosity, to which I hope I hear an echo:
"How charming is divine philosophy!
Who, then, is so impassive as not to feel delight in dwelling on the vast design of Nature, the order and beauty with which it is maintained, and yearn for an insight into its great arcana? Whether we survey the celestial scheme which prescribes to planets and their satellites stated revolutions, and upholds all, without dislocation of the marvellous mechanism, producing in the infinitely diversified movements of its members, by an all-wise counteraction of discordant discord, such surprising harmony; or whether we behold the terrific wonders of the atmosphere torn by devastating hurricanes, or agitated by conflicting, currents, laden with pestilence, dealing death around; or its soothing airs breathing life and health. Whether we study the structure of the solid globe, and the alterations it constantly undergoes, by the agency of heat or magnetism, or those subtile powers which generate the volcanic shock, and work the perpetual transmutation of its compact ingredients; or the properties of elementary substances, their union and reciprocal action; or the structure, development, and admirable adaptation of the vegetable and animal kingdoms, ascending in unbroken series to man; whether we look around and behold the curious felicity of his inventive genius, through which he has gained a mastery over the resisting elements, the stubborn earth, the treacherous ocean; and made the explosive steam, and the "thwart flame" of the "slant Lightning" ministers obedient to his behests; or the perseverance of his unremitted toil, by which he has reared in every zone monuments of his piety, his ambition, his ostentation; or the fertility of his aspiring ingenuity, by which he has increased his sources of comfort, and encumbered the field of enjoyment with the prodigality of his luxury; or, finally, whether we cast our thoughts inward on ourselves, and consider the constitution and operations of the mind, the working of the passions, the sway of the affections, the faculties of the understanding, the dominion of the reason?
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