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On the encouragement of a more general interest in scientific pursuits


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Benson, William 1889 , 'On the encouragement of a more general interest in scientific pursuits' , Papers & Proceedings of the Royal Society of Tasmania , p. 13 .

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The object of this short paper is to offer a suggestion for
the consideration of this Society.
So far as the meetings of the Royal Society are intended
for the interchange of notes upon new discoveries between
savants and specialists only, the reading of such papers is a
natural and proper course, though it may still be questionable
whether those who merely hear a technical paper read gain
as full a knowledge of its contents as they would by studying
it at leisure in the Society's printed proceedings.
But while I would not depreciate the value of such papers,
which are and must be the most important that can come
before the Society, yet I would urge whether papers of
another kind might not also be encouraged.
In so small a community as ours the savants can never be
numerous, but there is, or with a little encouragement there
might be, a considerable number among us who would eagerly
and intelligently enter on scientific pursuits if facilities were
offered: and surely the fostering of this general interest,
and the creation of a wide-spread scientific taste throughout
our community are well worthy of any attention and assistance
this Society can give. In the long run they will yield
results of practical value, and also materially add to the
prosperity and influence of the Society itself.
Here our authorities are few, text-books hardly exist, and
English works are in many cases unsuitable. We are at a
great disadvantage in this respect, and are much more
dependent upon the direct teaching of our scientists themselves,
and for this reason I would ask this Society to consider
whether means cannot be devised for affording instruction
of a more elementary and general kind.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Benson, William
Keywords: Royal Society of Tasmania, Van Diemens Land, VDL, Hobart Town, natural sciences, proceedings, records
Journal or Publication Title: Papers & Proceedings of the Royal Society of Tasmania
Collections: Royal Society Collection > Papers & Proceedings of the Royal Society of Tasmania
Additional Information:

In 1843 the Horticultural and Botanical Society of Van Diemen's Land was founded and became the Royal Society of Van Diemen's Land for Horticulture, Botany, and the Advancement of Science in 1844. In 1855 its name changed to Royal Society of Tasmania for Horticulture, Botany, and the Advancement of Science. In 1911 the name was shortened to Royal Society of Tasmania.

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