Proceedings of the Royal Society for the month of November, 1892

Royal Society of Tasmania 1892 , 'Proceedings of the Royal Society for the month of November, 1892' , Papers & Proceedings of the Royal Society of Tasmania , xviii-xxxv .

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More than ordinary interest centred in the closing meeting for the
present session of the Royal Society held on Monday. It was the last
occasion on which Sir Robert Hamilton would preside at the Society's
meetings, and also the time selected for the delivery of his valedictory
address as President. The Art Gallery at the Museum was prepared,
and provided splendid accommodation for the 200 or more ladies and
gentlemen, members, and their friends, present on the invitation of the
Council. His Excellency and Lady Hamilton were received by the
Council and Secretary. The audience included the Premier (Hon.
Henry Dobson) and other members of the Ministry. Apologies for
absence were received from two members of the Council.
The Hon. J. W. Agnew (honorary secretary and senior vice- president
of the Society), in prefacing the reading of the following address to
the President, referred eulogistically to the warm practical interest
Sir Robert Hamilton had displayed in the operations of the Society.
On the eve of your departure from the colony we, the Council of the
Royal Society of Tasmania, desire to express, on behalf of the Fellows, our
warm and cordial appreciation of the deep and practical interest which
your Excellency has ever taken in the work of this Society
Mr. Barnard, vice-president and senior member of the Society,
said ; Your Excellency and Lady Hamilton, by way of supplement to
the address which has just been presented to Your Excellency by Dr.
Agnew, I have now the pleasant and agreeable duty to perform on
behalf of the Council and Fellows of the Royal Society, of offering for
Lady Hamilton's acceptance a Tasmanian black opossum skin rug as a
token of the personal respect and esteem in which she is held by the
members of this Society. It is not too much to say of Lady Hamilton
that she is a pattern of all the domestic virtues, and that during her
residence in Tasmania she has, both by precept and example, exercised a
beneficial influence upon society generally, and upon young people in
particular, that is likely to prove of lasting effect.
Includes the President’s address. During the Session, which closer this evening, eight meetings have
been held, and twenty-two papers have been read. The number of
Fellows of the Society has been increased by 12, and the number of
Corresponding Members by eight. The Society has sustained a loss by
the death of Captain Shortt, B.N., who for 10 years held the post of Meteorological Observer for Tasmania. Captain Shortt furnished this
Society with many valuable notes. He was a regular attendant at our
meetings and took part in our discussions, although the hour at which
he made his evening observations necessitated his leaving generally
before they were over. He was an accurate and careful observer, and
his sound common sense in dealing which his observations rendered them
of much practical use.
During the same period, the University of Tasmania has been
founded, and although it is early yet to speak of what it has done, it
has great days before it. The gentlemen charged with its administration
seem to me to be going the right way to work. They are fully
alive to the fact that you must walk before you can run, and that you
do not require a miniature Oxford or Cambridge in Tasmania. They
know that science teaching must occupy a more prominent place in their
curriculum than it does in the curriculum of these ancient seats of learning,
and they will not be deterred from utilising their University to
meet the wants of the community by any consideration that in so
doing they may be departing somewhat from the functions of the
old Universities at Home. But I am glad to see indications of a determination
on their part that their standard shall be high. In this
they are right and wise. The time must come when Hobart will be a
great educational centre of a united Australia, and the higher the
standard in Tasmania is known to be, the sooner will its University
attract the youth from the other colonies, who will get at its seat of
learning an education and training at least equal to that their own
Universities afford, while at the same time they will be laying in a
store of health and vigour, which, in the battle of life, is second only in
importance to education itself.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Royal Society of Tasmania
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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