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than 1,3837-and in the whole, including building expenses, &c. nearly 6,000l. The expenses last year exceeded the income full 450l. Mr. B. concluded with an eulogy on the liberality of the illustrious Emperor Alexander, who had enabled Mr. Knill (the Missionary of their Society at Petersburgh) to establish a school in connexion with his own chapel.
W. ALLEN, Esq. (the Treasurer) wished to caution the Society against discouragement on account of its pecuniary concerns, for he remembered them in a situation ten times worse. It would, however, be very desirable to get out of debt, in order to which he proposed to raise 6000l. in shares of 100%. each; already he had five names (which were mentioned) with encouragement to expect more; for Englishmen were not backward to support any plan of public utility when properly understood; and he did not doubt that by the next anniversary the object would wholly be accomplished. Their object was to enable the poorest of the poor to read the Bible, and to unite Christians of all denominations under the standard of revealed religion. Mr. WILBERFORCE, M.P. remarked that their Treasurer had begun with stating that the Society had been heretofore rescued from much greater difficulties than its present; but (with his usual modesty) he omitted to add, what was the fact, that it was then rescued chiefly by his own generosity. As to the subject of education, its importance was forced upon us by the destitute situation of human nature-there is no animal comes into the world under a situation so needy and destitute as man. People are apt, indeed, to talk of generosity on this subject; but it is as much our duty to administer to the mental as to the physical wants of our fellow-creatures. It is our duty to Him, from whom we receive all our property and talents, to put into the hands of every one that sacred volume, which alone can guide us through life and afford us support in death. Mr. W. then followed the tour of the system as sketched in the Report of the Committee; and after reviewing the state of education in the various countries of the world, he moved, “That this Meeting entertains the most grateful sense of the patronage and support afforded to this Institution on the part of His Most Gracious Majesty, thereby strongly evincing his paternal regard to the best interests of the community." His Majesty, who had sent his annual donation of 100l., had an hereditary claim to the gratitude of the Society; for his venerated father, having had the christian sagacity to see its merits, lent it his early support, and it was delightful to see the son following the noble example of the father. This tribute of gratitude would, no doubt, be the more gratifying to His Majesty, from having been proposed from the chair by his Royal Brother. It was by works of this kind, which alone were worthy of kings, that he would support the dignity of his rank, and establish his claims to the gratitude of his people. Rev. ROWLAND HILL supposed it to be the policy of the Committee to place their best and worst speakers in alternate succession: he was therefore appointed to follow Mr. Wilberforce. He was, however, very happy in seconding the present motion, and could not help congratulating the friends of education on the very numerous and respectable Meeting which had that day assembled in its support, and particularly on their having met under the presidency of H. R. H. the Duke of Sussex, who had on all occasions proved himself the friend of education and of humanity. The "National " Schools were well protected and supported, and this was very proper; but it was well known that a large portion of British subjects did not belong to VOL. I. NO. II. the
the national church. He was connected with Sunday Schools for 3,000 children in the Borough, where all classes and parties worked together in diffusing the benefits of a religious education. He was sorry to find that the funds of the Institution were very low; but he trusted that the active exertions of the very numerous and respectable assembly which he saw around him would soon recruit them. He was aware that many persons thought they had occasion for all their money whilst living, but they could not when dead; and therefore he hoped (without injuring their immediate relatives) they would remember the Society in making their wills. As a proof of the exertions making for the dissemination of education, he would mention the seven Madagascar boys present, whose instruction was proceeding rapidly. He had had them at his house, and he would say that better behaved boys he had never met and while he was on this subject he could not omit to mention, to the great credit of Government, that they allowed 50%. for the support of each of these boys. This was a proof that they were not insensible to the blessings of education, but really anxious to promote it. The Rev. Gentleman concluded by expressing his warm approbation of the resolution, which was then put and carried amidst great applause.
The BARON DE STAEL, from France, next presented himself to the Meeting, and was very favourably received. He observed that it was indeed a sight which reflected honour on the character of this country, to see so numerous and respectable an assemblage of its inhabitants, of different creeds and politics, met for the common and benevolent object of communicating the blessings of education to the poorer classes of their fellow men. Such an association deserved to prosper, and its patrons merited the best thanks of their country. He was sorry to say that the schools established in France had not met with that success in the last year which they had reason to expect; but he could assure them it was not from want of exertion on the part of their promoters: they had done all in their power, and he hoped that their exertions would yet be attended with success. It was to him highly gratifying to see, in this country, Princes of the Blood come forward at the head of benevolent institutions like this: whereas in other countries they generally confined themselves to the precincts of the court. The Noble Baron therefore felt great pleasure in moving, "That the most respectful thanks of the Society were due, and were humbly offered, to Their Royal Highnesses the Duke of Sussex and the Prince of Saxe-Coburg, for their continued patronage of this Institution, and for the support they thus afforded to the cause of universal education."
Rev. MARK WILKS was so accustomed to follow his noble and excellent friend in his own country (where he was Secretary to the Bible and Slavetrade Abolition Societies, &c.) that he felt himself involuntarily led to second this resolution; and he assured the Royal chairman, that whenever His Royal Highness's name was mentioned abroad, it was always associated with the most liberal and honourable feelings.
The DUKE OF SUSSEX thanked the Meeting in the name of his Royal relative and his own, for the honour which they had conferred in so distinguished a manner. On the part of H. R. H. the Prince of Saxe Coburg, he could assure the Meeting that he felt sincerely the honour conferred. He had been obliged to be absent from the country for some time, in consequence of the ill health of a near relative, but would return in a few weeks, and would learn with gratitude the obligations which he owed to the Meeting, and they
might rest assured that he would never forget the dear ties which knit him to the people of England. As to himself, his opinions with respect to their valuable institution were the same as ever; and it afforded him the most sincere gratification to preside at a Meeting which had been so much honoured by the eloquent and glowing address of his hon. friend (Mr. Wilberforce). On the principle of the benefits of education and of toleration, he thought there could be but one opinion in all liberal minds. They were the principles which seated his family upon the throne of this kingdom, and he trusted that the time was not far distant when the qualified name "toleration" would be set aside. He regretted that the Society established in France had not been more successful in the last year; but he hoped that the good sense of those who opposed the dissemination of mental improvement would bring them to a better and more enlightened view of this subject. It was also to be regretted that so very little progress had been made in Italy; but he hoped that by the next Report it would be found, that they who were thus endeavouring to check the progress of the human mind, were working the destruction of their own fabric. His Royal Highness, after congratulating the Meeting on its numbers and respectability, and exhorting. them to continue their exertions, concluded by expressing the great pleasure he felt at learning that Government had so liberally provided for the Madagascar boys. His Royal Highness sat down amidst loud cheers.
Mr. EVANS, M.P., in proposing the thanks of the Meeting to the Duchess of Kent, the Vice Patronesses, and Ladies' Committee, made several remarks on the progress of the Institution, and the obstacles which similar attempts had encountered abroad. Amongst other circumstances, he mentioned that from a school opened at Milan, for the instruction of youth, the pupils were recently expelled at the point of the bayonet, and the master and principal promoters arrested and thrown into prison.
Rev. Mr. Cox (of Hackney), in seconding this motion, took the opportunity of reading some extracts from the Report of the Ladies' Committee, to show how well they merited the thanks of the Meeting.
J. RANDOLPH, Esq. (Member of the American Congress) moved the thanks of the Meeting to His Grace the Duke of Bedford, President, and the Vice-Presidents, and that the Right Hon. Lord Suffield, and J. H. Harington, Esq. be added to their number; also thanks to those "Reverend Gentlemen who had befriended the Institution by preaching on its behalf, or by granting the use of their churches or chapels." Mr. R., in recommending this motion, dwelt upon the virtues of the House of Russell and other great families, whose present representatives he found in the list of the Vice Presidents.
This motion was seconded by Mr. VAN OVEN, Vice-President of the Jewish School, who mentioned it as an instance of Christian liberality, that even persons of his religion were not excluded. He also expressed the gratitude of the supporters of the Jews' free schools, for the assistance rendered to them by the British and Foreign School Society.
The Royal Chairman here read a letter from His Grace the Duke of Bedford, apologizing for his absence, and inclosing his noble annual subscrip-, tion of 100%.
Rt. Hon. Lord EBRINGTON, after complimenting the Royal Duke, and the noble foreigners present, particularly the descendant of the illustrious Madame de Stael, proposed the thanks of the Meeting to the different auxiliary branches of the Society, particularly at Bristol, Plymouth, and Tavistock;
Tavistock; adding, "That this Meeting hails with delight the rapid progress of the system in foreign countries; and, for his extraordinary services in introducing the system into Spain, elects Lieut. Col. Kearney an Honorary Member of the Institution."
Rev. Dr. SCHWABE, in seconding the resolution, defended his country (Germany) from a hint thrown out of being indifferent to the cause of education; and requested the other foreigners present to carry home with them the assurance of the warm interest felt in his country for the success of education abroad.
This, like all the former motions, being carried unanimously, the last resolution was, of course, a vote of thanks to the Royal Chairman, which was moved by the Rev. Dr. WAUGH, who began with this remark; "That when the great God meant to display his sovereign wisdom and power in the highest degree, he said, 'Let there be light,' and there was light: those words were echoed from this and every similar institution, and on every Sabbath day, from every pulpit in the land, from the cathedral to the conventicle." Addressing the Royal Chairman, Dr. W. then said "This Meeting cannot adequately express their sense of Your Royal Highness's condescension on this and similar occasions-may 'your light so shine before men that they, seeing your good works, may glorify,' not you far be that—may your name be absorbed in the splendour of your own actions-while the glory shall be to your FATHER who is in heaven.'
The Rev. NICH. BULL (Rector of Saffron Walden) seconded this motion, as he felt it his duty to express his approval of the liberality apparent both in its plan and conduct; and he hoped the great cause of education and of knowledge would proceed till the earth should be filled with the glory of the Lord.
This motion being carried by acclamation, was acknowledged in few words by His Royal Highness, who hoped the benefits of this Meeting would be 'long felt by the Institution. His Royal Highness retired amidst the loudest plaudits, and a handsome collection was made at the doors of the Hall, several of the plates being held by ladies.
Royal British Institution for the Education of the Poor.-On the 3d of May, the Annual Meeting of the friends and supporters of this excellent Institution was held at the school-house, in North-street City-road, where a nume<rous and respectable attendance took place.
His R. H. the Duke of Sussex not being able to attend the Meeting, Mr. Alderman Wood, the founder of the Institution, was requested to take the chair, which he did, and expressed his regret at the absence of the Duke of Sussex, whose indisposition (he said) could be the only cause of his non-attendance at the Meeting.
Mr. WILKS, the Secretary, now read the Report, from which it appeared that the Institution was in a very flourishing state, and had met with the most liberal support of the public. Since the year 1813, the Society had received under its care 4,433 boys, and the number had been increased to 4,808 -of these, 2,501 were taught to read and write, and 2,807 had been completed in the rules of arithmetic. Within the last three years, 580 girls had been admitted into the schools, and taught needle work and the rudiments of education, and 217 now remained in the school, the dimensions of which were so very extensive, that more could be received. It also stated that
3000l. have been expended in the erection of two commodious schools, and there only remained a debt of 400l., which it was anticipated would be liquidated by that day's subscriptions, and others in hand.
The school embraces the children of the poor of every denomination, without offering violence to their religious feelings, and is conducted upon the liberal plan of the British and Foreign School Society; conveying religious and moral instruction only through the medium of the Scriptures, to which some of the girls showed so great an attachment, that they saved all their little pittances of pocket-money, &c. to purchase Bibles for themselves.
After the Report was read, several of the children of the Institution were conducted into the room. They were neatly clad. Being placed in rotation, each of them produced some specimen of their forwardness in education in its varous branches, and the needlework and writing exacted the highest eulogies from the company. Several read passages out of the Bible.
Sunday School Union.-The Annual Meeting of this Society was held on Tuesday morning, May 7, at the City of London Tavern, Joseph Butterworth, Esq. M.P. in the chair. The company assembled to breakfast between 5 and 6 o'clock in the morning, and the chair was taken at half-past six. About 1000 persons were present.
The Report stated, that the total of Sunday scholars in London and its vicinity was 52,549 children, and 478 adults, taught by 4,870 gratuitous teachers, being an increase of 3,687 scholars in the past year. Several new Sunday School Unions had been formed during the last year. In three counties in Wales there was a total of Sunday scholars, including children and adults, amounting to one-fifth of the population. The Report exhibited a total of upwards of 600,000 Sunday scholars in Great Britain and Ireland, in addition to which there were many places from which no returns had been communicated. The Report then alluded to the spread of education generally throughout the world, and especially by means of Sunday schools; 9000 scholars were stated in the New York Sunday School Union, and 24,000 connected with that of Philadelphia.
The Report was highly interesting, and the Rev. Messrs. Winter, Scott, and several other gentlemen, addressed the Meeting in eloquent speeches,
Summary of Returns of Sunday Schools.-These returns have been received from the different Unions and Reporting Societies in correspondence with the Institution.
Of which 471 are new schools opened during the past year.