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AUSTRIA. You will not be surprised this time to hear of the first German power, i. e., of Austria. Though she ranks not at all first among the states in regard to education, yet she has made, since 1849, so great strides in the right direction, that all friends of educational improvement are at present even more interested in that country, than in those of older educational fame, where some watchmen fancy they find a slight tendency to reaction. The progress now already made in Austria, is especially visible in the erection of “Real Schools," a class of schools that has sprung into life within the last seventy years.

It is true the first school of the same name was kept by Hecker, at Berlin, more than a hundred years ago, but it was so defective in its organization, because of its containing too much of the too practical “Real” stamp, as manufacturing, agricultural, mining, commercial, and other classes, that the present "Real Schools” can not well be compared with it. They are, however, the offspring of that old reaction, or if you choose, revolution, since wrought out by Bacon and Comenius, against the exclusive classical or Latin schools; that is to say, against all schools in their former organization. No wonder then that Hecker, whilst he avoided Scylla, fell into Charybdis, by making his school a workshop. In one of his annual reports it was stated with satisfaction, that the pupils had been instructed in nursing mulberry trees and silk worms, and that in the manufacturing class, dealing in leather “was begun,” for which purpose the boys had been shown ninety samples of leather, each of them as great as an octavo leaf. Yet the spirit which had called it to life was not to be quenched, and a pedagogical strifo commenced, of which our Herder prophesied eighty years ago, that it would last forever; for the “Real Schools" would not teach Latin enough for an Ernesti, nor the Latin schools “realia enough for all the world.” Time was the best reformer, and in the last seventy years, more than three hundred “Real Schools” have been founded, or incorporated as parallel classes, on the gymnasium, on a sound principle of education, which left the gymnasia untouched on the one hand, and added technical schools of a higher and lower order on the other hand. Thus the Real Schools resembling your High Schools in every respect, are burgher schools of a higher grade, resorted to by all such as prepare for a trade or a higher technical instruction, and want a better education than the one given till the fourteenth year of age in our common or burgher schools: whilst professional students must prepare for the University in the gymnasia; and the merely technical wants of apprentices and others, in drawing, mensuration, &c., are provided by Industrial schools.

It would be difficult to make a satisfactory distinction between real, and industrial, and trade schools, and commercial schools, because they have no distinct and settled organization. The two latter are founded and kept by industrial or commercial associations, and are adapted to the peculiar wants of that class of the community, and are partly prior in date to the municipal or state real schools, (higher burgher schools,) and have evening and Sunday classes for apprentices. As to the different character of instruction, I may mention in general, that the Real Schools, as they are now an essential part of our public school system, try to give in their way a general education, by training and developing the mental and moral faculties, without particular regard to the various wants of their pupils, and are therefore sometimes called “real gymnasia." Thus, the modern languages, especially the French, are so taught as to apply

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the classical instruction in the gymnasia, not to make the pupil to learn phrases and to talk soon, but to show, so far as possible, the genius of the language and literature. Hence, the Real Schools combines in general the mathematical and linguistic elements of education, whilst the former predominates, (with natural sciences and drawing) in the industrial, the latter in the commercial schools.

The graduates of the Saxon real schools, either pass into the shop or go into the Polytechnical Institution, or Military College at Dresden, the Mining Academy in Frieberg, the Agricultural Academy in Tharand, near Dresden, or make their examination as clerks in the post otfice.

It is with regard to those high schools, that Austria is deservedly praised for great progress. Hahn says (Hand-buch der Statistik des Ostrichischen Kaiserstaats, Wien, 1853, II, p. 614,) "though there were already two real schools in Bohemia before 1850, yet neither these, nor other technical schools joined with industrial associations had a definite plan of instruction, such as the progress of industry urgently required now, the existing real schools are reformed, as others erected on a common system, having a complete organization. The extraordi. nary and annually increasing attendance of pupils, proves how much they are wanted. Municipal governments and associations in all the provinces have the greatest zeal in assisting the organization of each school by their contributions. This was owing to an imperial decree, dated Sept. 1848, but since then, the work has been advanced by the present minister of Public Instruction, Count Thunun, who presented an excellent memorial to the Emperor, which was approved March 8, 1851, and also by the Counselor, Dr. Marian Koller, since 1846 superintendent of that branch of education." There were in 1854, fifteen upper or complete real schools with six classes, viz.: two in Vienna, (554658 pupils,) two in Prague, (German, 327,-Bohemian, 465,) one in Presburg, (427,) Linz, (178,) Brunn, (819,) Graz, (159) Lemberg, Krakan, Milano, (934) Venice, Ruchinberg, Rakonitz, and Elbogen. Besides there were 120 Lower Real Schools, with but three classes, and 10,759 pupils, viz.: 16 in the archduchy of Austria, (6 in Vienna,) 30 in Bohemia, 13 in Moravia, 10 in Tyrol, 11 in Galicia, 15 in Italy, 5 in Hungary. Technical Academies or Polytechnical schools, exist in Vienna, (1,732 students,) Brunn (343,) Graz, (171) Lemberg, (223,) Krakan, (428) Prag, (805,) Pesth, (251,) and Trieste, (221,) having in all 1,637 German students, 908 Bohemians, 570 Poles; 349 Magyars; 191 Italians, and 138 Slavonians.

Seven upper real schools, (complete,) were about to be erected. Ten separate and nine “associate” lower real schools, (joined to a burgher school.)

These Austrian real schools differ from those of northern Germany by their more realistic or technical character, drawing, mathematics, and natural sciences forming the chief branches of instruction, whilst in our northern high schools, the modern languages assume, some say, a too important position. In the real. istic department of Leipsic, for instance, there are two professors of modern languages; one of French, the other of English; whereas in Austria, instruction in the same is not "obligatory," nor committed to regular teachers, nor is it surprising since these were intended to be preparatory to Polytechnical Academies, and similarly organized to those real schools connected before 1849 with those academies in Vienna and Prague. And just that industrial character favored their increase with the government, which at all times was eager to raise its industrial and scientific schools, to, or above the level of the same schools in the rest of Germany. I may mention here that whilst the Austrian

Universities are in other respects not to be compared to ours, still the Medical Faculties of the same in Vienna and Prague, are superior to any in Europe.

Now to call these schools by American names, I think our Polytechnic schools may be compared with your Scientific schools. I refer particularly to the Lawrence Scientific School in Cambridge, though I am not aware that a school for Architecture is connected with it, as is the case with our highest scientific schools. Our Real schools resemble nearly the English departments of your high school, or the English High School in Boston; though in many Real schools, (especially in Prusssia,) Latin is still taught to some extent. In others, however, it is entirely superseded by French and English. I now come to a weak point, it seems to me in your English high schools; I mean the want of good instruction in modern languages. You may point to the English; but as the mother tongue of the pupils, it wants that which is so instructive in Latin and any other foreign language; and then beautiful as it is, it is too simple in structure, to be a sufficient ground-work of grammatical discipline. No wonder that English grammar or parsing is generally no favorite with your scholars. Now here, I dare say, a sound instruction in German or French is more wanted than with you. To say nothing of the practical use to be made of a modern language in after life, but merely in a pedagogical sense, I dont mean that you want natives of France or Germany, perhaps of doubtful education, to make the pupils talk as soon as possible in the foreign idioms, but well bred American scholars, who would not teach phrases from Ollendorf's grammar, but would know how to teach their pupils the structure of the language, and to make them acquainted with its literature.

Good text-books would soon follow. I will not dwell longer on this desideratum, especially as the means of employing such teachers are as often wanted as the right man; and in many cases both are wanting. Yet I consider that the committee having charge of your high schools, to make them truly schools of the highest order, should pay more attention to sound and thorough instruction in at least one modern language. There is a similar want in the Austrian Real schools, though by no means so great as in yours: and in Austria those are middle schools in a chiefly technical system of education, and your high schools, like our real schools, are intended to give a high-toned general education of the best sort without the classics.

I wish you had one other thing like the Austrian schools, the "annual programs.” You know that all of our schools of a higher grade as real schools, gymnasia, academies, universities, etc., have their annual reports always preceded by a literary or scientific treatise written by one of the professors. The advantages of this custom are too clear to be dwelt upon. Now the Austrian real schools make themselves very remarkable in their young career, by having, instead of one, three and four such treatises of two or three professors, besides the report of the Principal. This may be a task, and a great expense, yet one treatise written by one of the professors after a series of years, is a beneficial stimulus to private studies and is productive of scientific or pedagogical suggestions or results, which never would be published except in this form.

I should mention that teachers in the lower Real Schools of Austria are trained in the upper Real Schools in special training courses formed under the direction of the Principal

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EDUCATIONAL STATISTICS OF THE AUSTRIAN EMPIRE, IN 1856.

Number.
Teachers.

Students.
Universities, ...

.510..

.9,371 Theological Schools,...

.657..

.4,250
Law Schools,

6.
33.

286
Surgical Schools,

8.
77.

667
Obstetric, &c.,

20.

57.

. 1,475
Polytechnic,

8.
.178.

.5,130
Agricultural,

19

72.. Mining,

3.
Music, .

8.
.234.

.4,417
Gymnasia or Latin, ......270........ .3,096.
Real Schools—Upper, .. 14

..336 ...... 7,317
Military Orphan Asylums. 63.

.481..... .....5,520 Common Schools, .....30,132. .55,431.

2,570,362
Repetition, (Eve.& Sun.) 11,728.

.2,532,016
Infant Schools,
122.

11,571 Beside the above schools, which belong to the Ministry of Worship and Instruction, there are special schools for the Army.

The expense of the common schools, chargeable to the government was $4,531,662 florins, (a florin is about two thirds of a thaler, or about 47 cents.) The expense of the Infant Schools—literally gardens for infants during the day, when mothers are obliged to go out to work, is 90,000 forins.

MECKLENBERG. In turning from this topic, I am sorry to give a statement published in an official paper with regard to the present state of education in Mecklenberg, viz.: that of 940 recruits conscribed last autumn, there were

226 who could not read writing, (i. e., print they could read.)
180

" write at all.
160

but write single letters. 380 who understood no arithmetic, and but six had a higher education. Such things, adds the Saxon School Gazette, are read with horror! How is it to be accounted for? Beside the State schools, there are in Mecklenberg a great many “ritterscherfslicke," village schools, i. e., which are supported entirely by the lords of manor. The only law affecting them is of the year 1821. According to it, the school is to be open in winter, of course, daily, but in summer, twice a week for two hours, four in all, -actually they are open for 8, 12, even 18 hours, but badly attended. The schoolmaster is appointed by the gentleman, and under his inspection, (with that of the clergyman,) hence a complaint brought before the patron, is at the same time a complaint against the patron. The teacher is taken wheresoever he may be got, provided he can pass the examination before the provincial school board. But that examination is of a very low character, nor is much to be required from a man at a salary of about one hundred dollars a year.

66

XX. OBITUARY.

Thomas ROBBINS, D. D., died at Colebrook, Conn., on the 13th of September, 1856, aged 79.

In the death of this venerable Christian pastor, and representative of the habits and costume of the primitive days of New England, the common schools of Connecticut have lost an old teacher, a faithful officer, and one of the earliest laborers in the “Educational revival” which began about the year 1826, and which we hope has not yet reached its full development.

THOMAS ROBBINS, D. D., was born at Norfolk, Conn., on the 11th of August, 1777, the son of Rev. Ammi R. Robbins,* the first minister of that town, and for fifty-two years, in the pastoral charge of the same people. He fitted for college with the scholars which his father was in the habit of instructing in his own house, and joined the Freshman class in Yale in 1792, under the presidency of Dr. Stiles, with whom he studied Hebrew in addition to the regular course. At the close of the Junior year, he left Yale in good standing and joined the Senior class in Williams College, where he graduated with honor in August, 1796, and in September following, took the same degree of bachelor of arts with his former class at Yale College. For several years following he taught school, at Sheffield, Mass., and Torringford, Conn., while pursuing his theological studies, was licensed to preach in September, 1798, and officiated and supplied vacant pulpits in the States of Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and New York, until the autumn of 1803.

While officiating in this way in Fairfield county, he taught an academy in Danbury, from Dec. 1799, to Dec. 1802. While there he delivered on the 11th January, 1800, at the request of the town authorities, an oration on the Death of George Washington, and preached on the 1st of January, 1801, a Centenary Sermon on the first settlement of the town, both of which were published. In November, 1803, he was ordained a missionary of the Connecticut Home Missionary Society to New Connecticut—having declined urgent invitations to settle as pastor in Becket, Haddam, Winchester, and several other churches. From November, 1803, till May, 1806, he labored principally in the county of Trumbull, Ohio, until his impaired health obliged him to return. In May, 1809, he was installed pastor of the first Congregational church in East Windsor, where he continued till 1827, when he was dismissed at his own request. In 1830 he was installed pastor of the First Church in Stratford, and in September, 1831, removed to Mettapoisett, a parish in the town of Rochester, Mass., where he remained pastor of the church till August, 1844, when he removed to Hartford, Conn., to act as Librarian of the Connecticut Historical Society. For several years before his death he was obliged to give up the active duties of his office,

•Rev. Ammi Ruhamah Robbins was born at Branford, Conn., on the 25th of August, (0. S. , 1740. a son of Philemon Robbins, pastor of the church in that place. Graduated at Yale College in 1760; studied theology under Rev. Dr. Bellamy, of Bethlem, and ordained pastor of the church and society of Norfolk, in October. 1761, and died in the fifty-second year of his ministerial labors, on the 31st of October, 1813, aged 73 years. leaving a widow and eight children; three of whom were in the ministry. He was a brother of Rev. Chandler Rob. bins, D. D., of Plymouth, Mass.

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