Residential living: an apologia

‘I have been saying that regularity, rule, respect for others, the eye of friends and acquaintances, the absence from temptation, external restraints generally, are of first importance in protecting us against ourselves. When a boy leaves his home, when a peasant leaves his country, his faith and morals are in great danger, both because he is in the world, and also because he is among strangers. The remedy, then, of the perils which a University presents to the student, is to create within it homes, “altera Trojæ Pergama” [i.e. “a home from home”], such as those, or better than those, which he has left behind. Small communities must be set up within its precincts, where his better thoughts will find countenance, and his good resolutions support; where his waywardness will be restrained, his heedlessness forewarned, and his prospective deviations anticipated.’

‘Ties of loyalty and friendship can develop in a college setting when a student goes to university, when the mind is most impressionable and the affections are warmest, when associations are made for life, when character is most open and the feelings of reverence most powerful. There he forms friendships and spends his happiest days; whatever he achieves academically during his time at college, when he looks back in later years, he finds himself bound by ties of gratitude to the memories of college life.’

‘He has received favours from the Fellows, he has dined with the Warden or Provost; he has unconsciously imbibed to the full the beauty and the music of the place. The routine of duties and observances, the preachings and the examinations and the lectures, the dresses and the ceremonies, the officials whom he feared, the buildings or gardens that he admired, rest upon his mind and his heart, and the shade of the past becomes a sort of shrine to which he makes continual silent offerings of attachment and devotion. It is a second home, not so tender, but more noble and majestic and authoritative.’ (Rise and progress of universities)

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