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fuctuated through their dense gray folds, surably splendid in the purple dusk, that and showed the differing immovable out- sudden kindling of ethereal, palpitating, lines of the purple heights. In the invis- white fire which he had marked once ible pools below these transient lines of before, that new and supernal star, fire were glassed, shining through the strange to all familiar ways of night gloom. The reflection of stars failed hitherto, shining serene, aloof, infinitely midway, because of the mists. There fair above the melancholy piping mounwere few as yet in the sky, but as he tain wilds and the troublous toils of the lifted his eyes he beheld again, immea- world.
Charles Egbert Craddock.
THE TRANSMISSION OF LEARNING THROUGH THE UNIVERSITY.
We are beginning to perceive that the ordinary social law, but also to the guid• modern view of the origin of man is ing truths of that science which shows us greatly to affect our understanding as to how we have struggled through the wilhis true place in this world. So long as dernesses of the ages from the inconceivwe looköd upon ourselves and our fel- ably remote time when our being came low-beings.as creatures placed upon the forth out of the earth and began its long earth by some process other than that upward way. Beholding ourselves here of natural law, it did not seem worth as the result of immemorial order, we while to seek in the realms of nature have to look over the stages of our adany counsel as to the conduct of life. vancement to gather the important lesIt is one of the most admirable and dis- sons of the new revelation. We are to tinguishing features of our time that it see in what ways we can apply these has given us a new insight into the re teachings, so that we may with our own lations of man with the nature which is reason continue the development which about him, and thereby has brought into has led us from the darkness into the his command new means of inquiry, and light. has opened vast perspectives of know- First among
many problems which ledge of which the men of other days the new dispensation of knowledge brings never dreamed. We of this generation before us we may place that of the transrecognize a bondage, or better an alli- mission of learning. It needs no arguauce, with the past, which gives new ment to show that the immeasurably great understandings and makes new paths of task of handing down from generation to duty clear. Nowhere else is this so evi- generation the ever-accumulating store of dent as in the information which we have valuable experience imposes a heavy burgained as to the relations of mankind to den
upon the men of our time, a burden the lower life.
which increases with each successive age. From this enchainment of our being The only way in which we can hope to with that of the lower creatures of the accomplish this work in a satisfactory past, this fact to be accepted and recon- manner is by studying its nature, guidciled to our thought and action, must date ing ourselves in the inquiry by the hisa new period in human affairs. Hence- tory of the processes of transmission from forth we have to adapt our conduct not the beginning to the present day. In this only, as our forefathers did, to the com- undertaking we cannot limit ourselves to mands of religion and the behests of the human period; we must endeavor to
survey the records of the earlier time mined by its inheritances; it gives birtlı when life was in its lower stages, slowly to its progeny, and passes quickly from yet surely making ready for its position the vital stage. The institution of sucin man.
There we shall find much to in- cessive and ordered birth and death in struct and guide our efforts.
many distinct groups of animals and In the lowest states of organization plants shows clearly that the Power which in nature, in such aggregations as the determines the order of nature, and which molecules, the crystals, and the celestial has lifted the scale of being upward to spheres, we find structures of great va- ourselves, finds the succession of generariety and much complication, with many tions a fit element in the plan. With resemblances, both in form and function, each stage in the advance, the limitation to organic species. We readily note, how- of the time of existence, the establishever, that these primitive bodies differ ment of the time of death, becomes more from those forms which we properly terin definite, until, in the higher creatures, the organic in that they acquire from their period is fixed within a narrow range. contact with the world about them no- This institution of death is apparently thing which they can hand on to their made in order that the species may have
So far as we can discern, the advantages arising from the process, they remain in their unchanged primi- of selection, which can operate only by tive forms through all space and time. the rapid presentation of successive indiThe molecules and the crystals of quartz viduals to the stern election which chooses formed in the earliest ages of the earth the fit to live, and the unfit to die. There are like those produced to-day; they are can be no doubt that the advance of the probably the same in the remotest stellar organic groups has intimately and absosphere in which the physical conditions lutely depended on this order of nature permit of their formation.
which allows each individual but a mo We easily see that it is otherwise with mentary dwelling on earth. At the same the organic creations. Their essential pe- time, as we readily see, the interruption culiarity, separating them by an infinite of death tends exceedingly to complidifference from the lower realın, consists cate the task of handing on through each in these facts: they manage to adjust form the inheritances and acquisitions of themselves to their environment; they its progenitors. These difficulties are met fit the changing conditions of the world by an almost infinite number of contrivabout them; they learn from the events of ances, of which we can note the nature life, and hand on the ever-increasing store only in the most general way. This arof experience to their successors. Unlike ray of ingenuities constitutes a distinct the individualities of the mineral king- world, in which the observant naturalist dom, these truly living species are never may spend a lifetime of study, and still in successive generations the same. While feel himself an essentially ignorant insuccessful, they are normally ever advan- quirer. cing; when unfortunate, they swiftly de- In the lower forms of animals and cline; success and failure are alike deter- plants, the forefathers give to their offmined by the measure in which they profit spring the share of inheritable gains by from the experience the individuals have storing - we know not how - the transreceived from their ancestors or have missible qualities in the spore, bud, or themselves acquired. We also note that gerin. At this stage in the development almost at the outset of the organic series of the generational system, the parent the life of the individual form is restrict- gives but the beginnings of life, the ed; it is here but for a brief time; it de- ' tendencies which lead towards certain velops in the manner and degree deter- shapes and functions. This is sufficient
to guide the young only a little way on the spiders, and find in them just enough their career.
At a higher level, we find food for their needs. Philosophical natuthe egg or seed containing a consider- ralists have speculated how this remarkable store of nutriment derived from the able result is brought about, but their arparent; this may serve to maintain the
guments have been quite without point. young creature for a longer period of In such special instances, as in the larger growth, and thus permit it to attain a field of the less conspicuous phenomena higher plane of structure. In our birds, which beset the observer when he surthis provision of food contained in the veys the realm of instincts relating to egg may amount in weight to as much the care of offspring, he cannot, except as one fifth of the mother's body. By in rare cases, hope to unveil the details this provision, the chick is enabled, dur- of the fact. He must, however, recoging the period when it is within the shell, nize the truth that by far the larger part to advance from the simple state of the of animal intelligence has arisen from germ to a condition of high organization. and been devoted to this endless effort As we advance in the organic series to to convey to the
young the goods which the creatures which give milk, we find have been won by their predecessors of yet more complicated and efficient ways the species. by which the parents give physical sus- Although this effort to bridge the gap tenance to their young, and so lead them which death makes in the life of the kind far onward in their bodily growth. An is one of the most insistent in the lower inspection of the vegetable kingdom shows forms of life, it attains in the higher us a similar advance in the means where- races of our own species a dignity and by each generation, in its prime, devotes importance which are unapproached elseits strength to the duty of helping the where in this world. In these, as in other offspring to win the difficult way from respects, man, though akin to the more birth to the adult or perfected condition ancient and lowlier creatures, so far tranof the body.
scends them that by the upward step he But in the animal realm the bodily enters into a new realm. Among the incontrivances by which the parents en- ferior animals, there is rarely any considdeavor to help the offspring are sur- erable store of inheritances, material or passed by the intellectual. As soon as intellectual, which can be handed on from creatures attain to any share of intelli- the individuals in their prime to those gence, they begin in most varied
to who are to be their successors on the care for their young ; in fact, their minds stage. They give their lives to the work, may be said to develop most distinctly but they have, as compared with man, on the side of parental care. By artfully but little to hand on. constructed nests, by a thousand diverse With the most primitive men, the proattentions to the shelter, sustenance, and blem of inheritance is nearly as simple protection of their progeny, they lead as with the highest of their animal prethem past the dangers which assail all decessors. They have little beside their weak forms, and start them fairly in the habits and traditions which can be transrace of life. In some cases these con- mitted to their progeny. They have no trivances are most singular, as in the in- material wealth; even the weapons and stance of the mud wasps, which build a ornaments of the dead are usually buried cell of clay, and deposit in it first a col- or burned with the body. Yet even in lection of spiders, each of which has been this social station we find the beginning benumbed, but not killed, by stinging, of that attention to the task of transmitand then the eggs; the whole being so ting the learning which the generations managed that the young wasps feed upon have accumulated. Thus, among our
American Indians as first seen by Euro- traditions of religion and the simple arts peans, there was practically no private and learning, such as reading and the wealth, and little trace of a system by elements of number. With the creation which goods could be passed even from of literature the tasks of the teacher parent to child; but the knowledge which began rapidly to increase, and with the they had gathered from their observation advent of natural science his functions of nature, an extensive and curious body became vastly more extensive and imof information, was carefully treasured portant. In the Elizabethan age it was and skillfully handed down to the youths still possible for a learned man to attain of the tribe. There were orders of priests something like mastery of all the arts and whose duty it was to pass on the tradi- sciences. A youth could look to a single tional customs, the songs and tales. There teacher for guidance from the beginnings were societies, which in a way resembled of his education to the time when he enour masonic and other fraternities, whose tered the world fairly provided with the purpose it was to maintain and extend more valuable learning of the earlier ages. what we may well call the literature of An “Admirable Crichton,” a man masthe primitive people.
terful in all the arts and sciences and The evidence clearly shows that the skilled in all polite learning, was then first wealth was not that of goods, but possible, as he has not been in the later that which depends upon and affords cul- centuries. ture. It was indeed at a relatively late To the naturalist, the devices which stage in the history of our kind that the men have instinctively invented in order devices for amassing and transmitting the to accomplish the transmission of learnordinary forms of property were invent- ing are most interesting, for the reason ed. The teacher, in the largest sense of that they are framed on the same genthe word, was the first of the classes to eral principles as those by which the be separated from the mass of men for ever-increasing needs for the work of particular duties connected with the com- the organic body are provided for. In mon store of the people. It is true that, this natural process, we observe that the as the keeper and transmitter of know- organism which in the lower state perledge, he was also the priest. These two forms all its simple yet important funcfunctions were naturally and for a long tions indifferently with every portion time associated. We may with truth say of its frame, gradually, with its elevation that only during the present century have in the scale of being, delegates these they been to any extent separated among several duties to particular parts or our own people. The merchant, the organs which do their appointed tasks banker, the lawyer, those agents engaged independently, yet under the control in the problems arising from the trans- of the whole being. Thus, the senses, mission of tangible property, began to though acting individually, are associfind their place in society when it took on ated in their work by the brain which the civilized form; like the goods with presides over them: they are at once which they deal, they are things of yes- individual parts and members of a sociterday in the history of mankind. ety in which they are coöperators. So,
From the simple beginnings of the task too, in that other and vaster organism, of transmitting learning by special teach- which we term the state, civilization, ers, the process has been steadfastly de- or humanity, according as we view it, veloping with the advance of civilization. a structure which, though invisible and For a time the greater part of the de- elusive, is still perfectly real, – the liberately continued teaching was left to separate functions are united in their the priestly class, and was limited to the action, so that the whole has a true, and
in a sense personal quality. Those who alone. This is the understanding to
ences in the conduct of life, those reAll this work of organizing the indi- cognitions of moral truths which afford vidual body, so that it may inherit from the subject matter of religion. Such the past and transmit to the future, vast are, by common consent, committed to and in a way infinitely important as it that part of the organism termed the is, appears to the philosophical inquirer priesthood. Then we have the princito be a mere laying of foundations for ples of action of man with man, which, the social edifice. This social body, in though they may rest on the canons or which the minds of men play a part like rules of religion, need the interpretation that of the cells in the human form, be- and sanctions which are the keeping of gan likewise in exceeding simplicity, and jurists. Next in the hierarchy, where is, day by day, before our eyes and in there is as yet no determined precevirtue of our deeds, swiftly ascending dence, come the multifarious occupations in the grades of structure. To those of men relating to the care of the body, who attentively contemplate this ma- the production, preservation, and transjestic process of ongoing, the spectacle mission of material resources. In a way can be compared only to the sunrise, assembling all these functions, and overwhen each moment reveals new realms. arching them, is the work of the teacher. The process is not one of growth by At every step the question arises as accretions, but rather like the swift un- to the means whereby the coming genfolding of a structure which, like our eration may be given possession of the springtime blossoms, has been shaped accumulations of the past, and at the and stored away in other days. The same time be made ready to secure its social evolution is yet more peculiar in own advance. Whatever the branch of the fact that we may take a conscious activity under consideration, this quespart in the process ; not only may we tion is essentially pedagogic: it conbehold actions in their spontaneous cerns the supreme art of transmitting march, but we may contribute to the learning. Whatever the practical apefficiency of the work, save it from the plication of the task may be in the mischances which inevitably attend the crafts, the arts, or the sciences, the prorude, wasteful, and often cruel ways of blem is mainly for the teacher. It is nature, giving it the finish and accom- his duty to find how the learning may plishment which characterize human art be gathered into a safe store, and de