||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 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.] (continued)
There is indeed another way in which this Society, whilst more directly than heretofore fulfilling its avowed object of developing the natural resources of the country, might entitle itself to the gratitude, and perhaps enlist the services of the heads of our scientific departments, and that is, by enforcing from time to time their applications for pecuniary aid upon the Government and the Parliament.
I might, from the peculiarity of my public position, hesitate to refer more specifictlly to such a matter, had I not the high example of Prince Albert, who pointed this out to the British Association at Aberdeen, as one of the functions it was eminently fitted to discharge.
I entirely concur with His Royal Highness in thinking that it is well for every country to possess a body capable of justly appreciating the wants of science, and of speaking with authority whenever the national interests demand the expenditure of public money for scientific purposes.
I am aware that this Society has, on some particular occasions, done so, but I think it might safely carry the principle further; and when it is clear, for example, that the printing of the maps of the Geological Survey is delayed for want of funds: that the collection of minerals and fossils made to illustrate it lie useless, because neither space nor money is provided for their proper classification: that two or three hundred pounds would suffice for the publication of Meteorological and Astronomical Observations of the highest value made at the Flagstaff-hill Observatory: I hold it to be the duty of this Society to call public attention to the fact, and not to leave the officers concerned to supplicate for the requisite funds as if they had gone private or personal interest to serve in obtaining them.
I am confident that if such desiderata were fairly made known on competent authority, there would be no disinclination on the part of the Ministry to propose the vote necessary for their immediate attainment; and no one looking at the annual Estimates, and seeing the scale on which many of our scientific establishments are provided for, can accuse the Legislature of a niggardly disposition in such matters. Were it otherwise, with the political constitution under which we live, it is not on either that the blame would fall, Lord Bacon, indeed, lays down the doctrine, that whatever the form of Government may be, "the state of knowledge is ever a democracy, and that prevaileth which is most agreeable to the senses and conceits of the people."
If there be then no just appreciation of the labors of scientific men; if there exist unreasonable impatience that the practical results of their investigations are not more rapidly realised: the fault is chargeable on the entire community.
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