Изображения страниц

2. The date and object of every benefaction, with the conditions attached, by the donor, especially to those in aid of indigent students, and any circum. stances to show the value and the wise management of the benefaction.

3. The manner in which funds were raised to provide for the extension, repairs, and equipment of the buildings, the enlargement and ornamentation of the grounds, and the supply of apparatus, &c

4. The peculiar qualifications of each Principai, and any peculiar excellence in instruction and discipline, as well as the subsequent career of the several Assistants.

6. The date of the introduction of each new branch, such as Algebra, Geometry, Physiology, Chemistry, and any of the natural sciences, with the text books used, and the facilities of practical illustration and manipulation in the latter. Ascertain the history of Art-studies or ornamental branches, and how paid for and taught.

6. The relations of the departments for males and females, as to instruction and boarding, and the opinions of teachers as to the results of their experience in the co-education of the sexes.

7. The arrangement made for boarding non-resident pupils in commons, clubs, and private families, and the advantages, evils, and expense of each mode; and the extent to which non-resident pupils have resorted to the insti. tution from the County, State, or abroad.

8. The denominational character and policy of the religious teaching.

9. The athletic games and exercises, as well as any systematic forms of manual labor for its healthful or economical results, which have at different times prevailed.

10. Any important change in the principles, methods, and penalties in discipline, and particularly in reference to corporal punishment.

11. Influence of Students' Societies for debate, &c., on the power of using the English Language, and habits of reading Number of volumes in the Library, and resources for annual increase.

12. Rates of tuition, time of payments, abatements.

III. PRESENT CONDITION under each of the above particulars, and general results, such as

1. Whole number of Pupils.
2. Number of College graduates.

3. Number of graduates eminent in political, professional, and industrial life.

4. Influence on other Schools, and education generally.

IV. FUTURE PROSPECTS—if not as favorable as in the past, assign reasons for.

[blocks in formation]

1. Memoirs of Founders, Benefactors, Instructors, and Alumni.

2. List and, if you can stare, a copy of all printed documents relating to the Institution.




Principal of Academy, Monson, Mass.


Recent events have directed attention to that class of schools known as Academies and suggested the importance of studying their history as related to classical and what is called higher English education. The erection and dedication of a splendid edifice for the use of Phillips Academy at Andover reminds us of the long continued usefulness of that institution as a classical school. Within a few years the biography of the founder of that institution, Judge Phillips, has been written by the Rev. John L. Taylor, a work of the greatest value in the help it gives to those who wish to understand the motives which led to the establishment of the Acad emies at Andover and Exeter.

The history of Leicester Academy by Ex-Governor Washburn, now Professor of Law in Harvard College, is a most valuable contribution to the history of the classical schools of New England. The address of Prof. Cleveland at the Centennial Celebration of Dummer Academy, recently published, suggests the antiquity of some of the oldest and best of New England Academies, while it is a most worthy tribute to the patrons and teachers of sound learning in former days.

The Academies of this country belong to that grade of schools often called in Europe by the general term, middle schools. On the Continent they are often called gymnasia, or classical drill schools, where boys are prepared for the Universities. In England they are called “the Great Public Schools,” as Harrow, Rugby, Eton, and Westminster. Those of less note are called simply grammar schools, which is their most ancient appellation. In Scotland they are called grammar schools and sometimes high schools, of which the High School at Edinburgh is one of the best, having been founded as early at least as 1519; since we have from that year continuous references to the High School in the records of the town council.* Stevens, in his History of the Edinburgh


• 1519, April 11. The quhilk day, provest baillies and counsall statutis and ordanis, for resson

High School, says that "Scotland had schools in her principal towns so early as the twelfth century."

The “ grammar schools” first established in the Massachusetts, Connecticut, and New Haven colonies, were evidently modeled, as near as possible, after the grammar or public schools of England, with which the founders of the colonies were perfectly familiar, inasmuch as they had been educated in them as well as in the English Universities, of which many of them were distinguished graduates.

It is not necessary to dwell very particularly on the “Public or Foundation Schools of England,” which served as the model of the first classical schools of this country, since they have already been the subject of articles * in this Journal.

In their attempts to transplant the English system of grammar schools as a part of their earliest institutions, our fathers did not succeed in their efforts to give them the endowments, which had been the ground of their inherent vitality in the fatherland, and caused them to be, for ages before America was discovered, what they have been truly called, "the most English institutions of England."

The Puritans were too poor to endow their institutions, even their first college, with other than a most meager foundation. They have left on record their ideals of what they attempted in their great enterprise of founding a new commonwealth, and among them all none is of greater interest than what they themselves called their first essays to establish colleges and classical schools.

Unable at first to plant a college, they did the next best thing possible. "A general court held at Boston | advanced a small sum, (and it was a day of small things, namely, four hundred pounds, by way of essay towards the building of something to begin a col

a lege." In this "something," before it became a college, the notorious Nathaniel Eaton was master, whom Mather berates as “ a blade who marvelously deceived the expectations of good men concerning him." Yet “ he was a rare scholar himself and made many more such ; but their education truly was in the school of Tyrannus."

There is no doubt that the “grammar schools” at Boston, Dorchester, Cambridge, New Haven, Salem, Hartford, and a few other places, were in the first generation good schools. Mather has given us their course of study for boys in training for " ye

universitie.” “ When scholars had so far profited at the grammar schools that they could read any classical author into English and readily make and speak true Latin, and write it in verse as well as in prose, and perfectly decline the paradigms of nouns and verbs in the Greek tongue, they were judged capable of admission to Harvard College.''* This standard of “ admission” speaks well for the early scholarship of the college as well as of its preparatory schools. It may be doubted whether the standard of classical attainments, on the whole, was not higher then at Harvard than it has been in

abel causis, that na muner of nychtbouris nor indwellers within this burt, put their bairinis till ony particulare scule within this toun, but to the principale gramer scule. 1531, March 19. Maister Adam Melvil of the hie scule oblist him to mak the bairnys perfyte gramariaris within thrie zeires (See Stevens' History of High School of Edinburgh.)

• See Vol. VIII., p. 257; XV., p. 81-117, † Mather's Magnalia, Book, IV., Section 4.



American college since.

It is certain that good scholars of that day could both make and speak “true Latin,” the language which learned men of the time used with the ease and fluency of their own vernacular. The first civilians and ministers of New England, the Winthrops and Winslow, Robinson, Cotton, Ward, Rogers, and Chauncey, were excellent scholars and some of them authors of distinguished repute.

Norton, Shephard, Eliot, and Symmes, were graduates of Cambridge, and Davenport of Oxford; and most of them were the contemporaries of John Milton, the great classic scholar of his own century and the great poet of all the centuries. At no period before or since, in the history of English literature, were the ancient classics more eagerly or extensively studied than in the days of the Puritan emigration to America. The great questions of controversy in ecclesiastical and civil affairs were discussed by the master-minds of the time in the Latin tongue, as for instance the conflict of Milton with Salmasius,

In liberty's defense, a noble task,

Of which all Europe rang from side to side. Those great men wrote in Latin, not for a few scholars only but that all the thinking, well educated men of the world might read and understand.

In the great strifes of the first and second English revolution, no class of men in Christendom were more interested than were the early colonists of New England. When we read, then, of their anxious fears, lest the learning, which the first generation of scholars brought with them to these shores, should be buried with them in their own graves, we may better understand what that learning was they prized so much, when we know the uses to which it was applied in their own times, and why they deemed it so essential that that same learning should live after them in all ages of the future.

The dread of the early Puritans as to the decline of learning in the colonies came near to actual realization, notwithstanding their

* Mather's Magnalia, Vol. 2d, Book IV. 4.


earnest attempts to prevent this calamity. For nearly three gener ations one college only could be sustained, and this was chiefly through the legacy of the Rev. John Harvard, who died soon after his arrival from England, where he had not long before graduated at Emanuel College in Cambridge. When Yale was founded in 1700 its chief benefactor was Gov. Yale, who was a resident of London and acquired his fortune in India during his administration as Governor of the East India Company. So, too, when Dartmouth was founded near the era of the Revolution its chief patron was an English nobleman. If, then, the colleges of the colonial period of our history were able to live only by benefactions which came chiefly from a foreign land, how could it be expected that the grammar schools could retain the rank they might have had under Master Cheever and other teachers of the first generation ?

Perhaps no greater efforts were made to sustain a good grammar school” or “free” school, in which : “ Latin, Greek, and Hebrew” were taught so as to fit young men for “ye universitie,” than in the colony of New Haven, which, in point of wealth, was equal at least to any other in New England. Rev. John Davenport, minister of New Haven, “ the prince of preachers and fit to be a preacher to princes," was unremitting in his labors to establish "a free" school, for the support of which “the town paid twenty pounds a year to Mr. Ezekiel Cheever for two or three years at first, but in August, 1644, it was enlarged to thirty pounds a year and so continueth.” Master Cheever was one of the first emigrants to New Haven, where he began his long service as a grammar school teacher in 1638, in which he continued for nearly seventy years, ending his career as the master of the Latin School in Boston, where he died in 1708. He used his own “ Latin Accidence" for successive generations, and long after his death it was the only "text-book" for Latin beginners in New England.*

When Master Cheever left New Haven in 1649 to go to Ipswich, the grammar school declined and although every effort was made to retrieve its fortunes, it never regained its earliest renown under its first and most famous teacher.

Not long afterwards Mr. Davenport tried" to settle at New Haven a small colledg such as the day of small things will permitt," but for that measure the fullness of time had not yet come. Having urged in vain the leading towns of the colony to maintain each a grammar school of their own, he then planned “a colony school" for the entire jurisdiction. But this, after two years, was “laid down” and never taken up again.

Cheever and the Early Free Grammar Schools of New England, I, 297: XVI, 102.

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »