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young persons, it may be of different opinions-whether secular or religious can be brought together, and can live together, and can entertain mutual regard and friendship for each other together, without assailing the opinions of others, and without compromising their ownhow you may be all things to all men, and yet belong wholly to God. This is the principle-the living principle-which has always made me feel deeply attached to this parent institution, and to all those throughout the land which are moulded in its form, and have embodied its spirit. It is now thirty years--if I may advert for a moment, before I take leave of you, to myself—it is now thirty years since I first gave my adhesion to the system of National Education in Ireland. That system has, in all essential particulars, remained the same. It has passed through many phases of opposition, and lukewarmness, and misrepresentations of violence, blowing with strange force from the most opposite extremes

"Una Eurusque Notusque ruunt."

Even in the midst of all this encircling whirlwind, it has maintained for itself a tranquil inner haven, where the moderate, the liberal, the peaceloving might find secure refuge, and pursue their appointed work. It has leavened, though not to the fullest possible extent, and with the most entire success, the intellect of the country. It has inculcated the value and the dignity of honest industry; and where that industry could not find a proper field for its employment at home, it has, as we have been lately informed from an eminent quarter, stirred the stagnant level of the peasant mind, and roused it to find elsewhere for that industry more ample development and more secure reward. I have mentioned the period throughout which my allegiance to that system has not faltered; and, if I may judge of the future by the past, it is not likely to do so.





[JUNE 17TH, 1857.]

WHEN the presentation of medals and prizes had concluded, SIR ROBERT KANE, Director of the Government School of Science,


He had now to offer, on the part of the professors of the Institution, and on his own part, their grateful thanks for the considerate kindness which had induced his Excellency to favour by his presence, and by the part he had taken in the proceedings of that occasion, their humble efforts for the advancement of the objects of popular and liberal education, in the success of which it was well known that his Excellency took the deepest interest. The presence on that occasion of the representative of her Majesty-a nobleman himself distinguished in the field of literary achievement-was a most useful stimulus to the exertions of the pupils.



I have to return my best and very grateful thanks for the most kind expressions which have just been addressed to me by the Director of this institution on his own part, and that of his colleagues, the professors and officers who have co-operated with him so ably and so effectually in organizing those operations, of which we have had just presented to us so gratifying a summary. I can assure you that I rejoice with very great sincerity to find that these your labours have received at once their most satisfactory attestation and their best reward, in the increase alike of numbers and of proficiency among those who have resorted to your courses and classes. Your enlightened Director has referred to the examination papers which have been placed before us; and it has often struck me on such occasions, as it does on the present,

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that it might have a very awkward effect if the tables were turned, and if those who had been examined-who had competed for premiums, and received them—were in their turn to subject to examination those who assist, or even who preside, at these exhibitions. For instance, if I was called on, in the geological science, "to give a sketch of the subject of denudation and uncomformability"-or if I were questioned as to what was "the polygon of forces"-or if I was asked to "convert four volumes of deutoxide of nitrogen or nitrous oxide into protoxide of nitrogen"-or, further, if I were told to define what are phyllodia and phyllocadia"-I fear it might lead to a very mortifying exposure; and I do not know that it might not be proposed, and perhaps carried, that I should be forthwith abolished. And, by the way, I am just tempted to remark that I do not see among these classes any one in English composition; if there had been, I should have been tempted to appeal to them against the rebuke to which I see I have been exposed by certain writers for the public press, for having ventured to call a portion of the community by the name of "persons." Now, I should have appealed with some confidence to them, that "persons" is the proper English name, or noun of number, for any portion of the community— for men and women, whatever their social station may be. That, I think, is a point of mock gentility on the part of my objectors; but, however that may be, I am very glad to see to-night such an assemblage of attentive and interested "persons," to witness the honourable exertions and applaud the well-earned triumphs of their fellow-citizens. And heartily do I rejoice to observe the classes and sexes which are drawn together to compete for these humble but honourable marks of their meritorious exertions. I would beg leave cordially to exhort them to persevere in that most becoming and creditable career in which they have given such good promise of attaining almost any degree of success, which always will follow on well-placed application. They will find the pursuit of knowledge delightful in itself, and that it will always lead them onward to new resources of enjoyment, and fresh means of usefulness— to increased gratitude to their common Creator, and to expanded benevolence to the whole mass of their fellow-creatures.


[OCTOBER 20TH, 1859.]

HEN the presentation of medals and certificates had concluded,


It is now my duty to present to your Excellency, on the part of my colleagues, the professors and officers of this institution, and of the students that have been to-night so highly honoured, our most sincere and respectful thanks for the courtesy with which your Excellency complied with our request, that you should honour this meeting with your presence, and also for the kindly sentiments of appreciation and sympathy by which you so eloquently encouraged to further exertion and success in life those whose ability and diligence had already come so favourably under your Excellency's notice. It is no novel feature in the literary and scientific history of these countries to recognise, as guiding the neophyte in the arduous paths of science, or illustrating the pleasant ways of literary research, those whose higher and more responsible positions have rendered them wielders of the nation's power, and the champions of her liberties; but it is not often that the disciples of literature and science are so favoured as on this occasion, when their exertions have been rewarded by one who, to illustrious station and historic ancestry, superadds the still nobler titles to reverence and esteem of self-earned intellectual distinction. It is to us a further ground for satisfaction, in receiving your Excellency this evening, that we meet here in an institution founded exclusively for the public good, and affording a ground of general co-operation, where all the various classes of the community, too much and too long separated by the jars and conflicts of worldly objects, may amicably meet, and on which all may cordially work together. Long may such ground be preserved sacred and inviolate, and wider and wider may its range of influence always tend; and, certainly, by your Excellency's presence on this occasion, we may hope that still further confidence may be felt in the success and diffusion of industrial education, for which this institution has been founded. My colleagues, therefore, through me, beg to tender to your Excellency their respectful thanks.



I rise to return my thanks in the first instance for the invitation with which I was favoured to be present on this occasion, and next for the great kindness with which I have been received. This is not the first, nor even the second time of my having the honour and the pleasure of assisting at the delivery of the prizes and certificates which are awarded in the Museum of Irish Industry. I believe, indeed, the first occasion of my being present was when the prizes were first awarded. On the last occasion the duties which I am now so well satisfied to resume were discharged by my immediate predecessor, the Earl of Eglinton, with his accustomed taste and courtesy. It is with the highest satisfaction that I learn, from the clear and able statement which we have just listened to from the Director, that in the interval since I was last among you on this occasion, he can give so favourable a report of the progress of the institution with respect both to the increase in the numbers of those who attended its classes, the exactness of their answers in the very difficult examinations through which I know they have to pass, and to the general full development of the purposes for which this institution was founded. It is, I confess, very satisfactory and very refreshing for me to feel, on an occasion like this, that we are not breathing any possible atmosphere of controversy. I feel that I have not risen to-night with any fear that the words which drop from my lips need be watched with any suspicion, or interpreted with any anxious misgivings. The products of nature, the materials of industry, the deductions of science, which form the special and exclusive subjects of attention and study within these walls, have nothing in common with the passions of the parties of the passing hour. We are here treading the serene temple of knowledge, which is pursued for its own bright sake with a homage which is perfectly disinterested. The rivalries of creeds and parties can find no admission here; and as for worldly honour and emoluments, the most lucrative rewards that we can offer to you are, the humble, but honourable prizes and certificates which it has just been my privilege to deliver. It will further, I am sure, be looked upon as a most satisfactory incident in these proceedings, that as no distinction of class, or creed, or opinion, can find. admission, so likewise there is no monopoly of sex. The laurels that

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