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Sidgwick, Henry (1838–1900), philosopher
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Henry Sidgwick: letters to his mother, Mary

Also includes:
99/193 - letter from Isabel Sidgwick (Apr 1901) to her sister-in-law Nora Sidgwick, enclosing Henry Sidgwick's wedding buttonhole flowers
99/204-205 - two letters from Mary Sidgwick to her son Henry (1859).

Sidgwick, Henry (1838–1900), philosopher

Henry Sidgwick: letters to Nora Sidgwick about Sidgwick's illness and death; letters to Sidgwick from his mother Mary; other letters and printed material

1-93: letters to Nora Sidgwick about Henry Sidgwick's illness and death
94-133: miscellaneous correspondence and printed papers of Henry Sidgwick, many relating to the debate about compulsory Greek at Cambridge.
134-190: letters to Henry Sidgwick from his mother Mary
191-194: letters from Henry Sidgwick to Spencer Baynes regarding his article on ethics for the Encyclopædia Britannica

Sidgwick, Henry (1838–1900), philosopher

Papers of Henry Sidgwick

  • SIDG*
  • Colección
  • 1859–1906

This collection of Sidgwick's papers consists mostly of correspondence covering the period 1859 to 1900, the major correspondents being Mary Sidgwick, Mary Benson (nee Sidgwick), F W H Myers and Eleanor Sidgwick. There is also some biographical material, obituary notices and papers relating to the memoir of Sidgwick published by Eleanor and Arthur Sidgwick.

These papers are catalogued within the additional manuscript series 'c' and are catalogued as Add.Ms.c.93-106; Add.MS.b.68-71 and Add.MS.d.64-71 also comprise material by or relating to Sidgwick.

Sidgwick, Henry (1838–1900), philosopher

Letters from Nora and Henry Sidgwick to Mary Sidgwick

Nora remarks on how sad it is that her and Henry's quiet time [in Paris on their honeymoon] is coming to an end, and how quickly the time has passed, but how long it seems since their wedding day. They go to Rouen the following day and then by Amiens to Calais, from where they will cross the channel back to England. They must be at Carlton Gardens the following Tuesday as Henry must look over some examination papers. They go to Cambridge on the following Friday for one day and return to London until the Monday following when they settle at Cambridge.

If the following day is as delightful as that day they may stay on in Paris 'till the last minute', because it 'does look lovely in the sun, with the fresh green trees, and the chestnuts just coming into flower'. They have been two or three times 'to the play, and enjoyed the excellent acting very much': last night they heard Racine's Athalie, and found it dull, but there were 'two very good little comedies afterwards'.

Henry writes that he is sorry to hear that William has been so depressed; hopes that the change will do him good, and that he will come over to Cambridge as soon as possible. Undertakes to write to him in the next couple of days. In relation to his mother's 'Munificent offer', states that Nora says that they have no breakfast service, dinner service, glass or cruet stand; they would be very grateful if she were to give them any of these. They have looked at the china shops in Paris, but prefer London pottery. Is sure that the crest sent to Arthur Balfour [see 105/9] was satisfactory. Notes on Saturday, 22 April that the morning is 'perfectly Lovely, and it is Madness to leave Paris, but Nora has an extravagant passion for church architecture, and is carrying [him] off to Rouen.' They will cross the channel on the following Monday or Tuesday, and have arranged to be at 4 Carlton Gardens on Tuesday; will write again from there.

Sidgwick, Eleanor Mildred (1845-1936) Principal of Newnham College Cambridge

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to his mother

He and Nora have been very busy; otherwise he would have written sooner. Refers to her direction to him in her last letter to write to William instead of her. Is glad that everything is going well. Reports that Nora wishes her to send the marmalade, in order to stop his grumbling 'at the stuff she buys'. Assures her that Nora will write soon, but explains that she is very busy with housekeeping, visitors, dinner parties, her own mathematics, and the mathematics of Newnham Hall.

Believes that the Ad Eundem is to be in Oxford on 10 [June], and asks if she could take them in then. They would like to come and see her and William, but he fears that it will very likely be an inconvenient time.

Sidgwick, Henry (1838–1900), philosopher

Letter from Nora and Henry Sidgwick to Mary Sidgwick

Admits to being a very bad correspondent; asks whether Henry has written to Mary. Reports that he is very busy with lectures and with organising the women's lectures 'and seeing that everybody gets taught what they want to learn'; he is also writing an essay for Mind. She is working at mathematics again with Mr Ferrers, and enjoying it very much; she is to have one or two pupils from Newnham Hall for Algebra. Reports that Miss Clough and several students at Newnham and their servants have become ill, probably from eating some unwholesome fish, but the doctor says that they will recover. Ellen Crofts has come back to the college, and Charlotte's sister Edith is also there. Edward Benson is coming to Cambridge on the following Friday, as he has to preach the commemoration sermon on the Sunday. Discusses Dr Slade and his seances, and the suspicions surrounding him, and refers to Professor Lankaster's evidence, which 'remains very strong in support of the trickery thing.'

Note from Henry Sidgwick to his mother, saying that both he and Nora 'have both been a good deal fussed about different matters', but that everything is sorted out now. Could almost believe that he had lived years in his house, which is exactly the sort of home they wanted. It is unlike what he thought of whenever he thought of living domestically in Cambridge; that he had always imagined himself 'in a semi-detached villa on the road to the railway station, exactly like twelve other semi-detached villas', but that the great feature of his present home is 'its Individuality.' Undertakes to send his own letter the following day.

Sidgwick, Eleanor Mildred (1845-1936) Principal of Newnham College Cambridge

Draft MS lectures on Shakespeare

Marked in red crayon A, B, C, F and J, with accompanying explanatory pages. Lectures contain emendations, annotations and amendments. Lecture on Coriolanus accompanied by a letter dated 22 November 1909 from A.W. Verrall to Mrs Sidgwick. Lectures and notes are accompanied by an envelope labelled 'Henry Sidgwick Shakespearean Lectures', with notes on lectures A-J inclusive. With envelope.

Sidgwick, Henry (1838–1900), philosopher

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to Spencer Baynes

Announces that he would like to undertake 'the article on Ethics' [for the Encyclopaedia Britannica], as Baynes suggests, but before deciding wishes to see the article on Aesthetics, and also to know how much space would be allowed to his article. Adds that he does not know how the question of copyright would stand with regard to such an article. Explains that he is anxious to write over the next year or two 'an outline history of ethics', and would not like to impair his freedom to do this.

Sidgwick, Henry (1838–1900), philosopher

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to Spencer Baynes

States that he will be very glad to undertake the article on ethics [for the Encyclopædia Britannica] 'on a plan very similar to that of Mr S[ully]'s "Aesthetics".' Refers to its possible length and states that he believes that it will be ready by September. Asks to have about one hundred copies of it for private use with his class at Cambridge.

Sidgwick, Henry (1838–1900), philosopher

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to [Spencer Baynes]

Is much gratified by what Baynes says about his article on ethics [for the Encyclopædia Britannica]. Explains that there may be some small mistakes in it, due to pressures of work. Mentions his wish to publish the article in an enlarged form. States that he would not like to undertake any more work immediately, but will be very willing to do so 'in some later number of the Encyclopædia', and suggests politics, utilitarianism or Socrates as possible topics.

Sidgwick, Henry (1838–1900), philosopher

Henry Sidgwick: certificates of fellowships and honorary doctorates

Certificate, 9 February 1884, awarding Sidgwick an honorary doctorate of the University of St Andrews [item 2]. Certificate, 29 April 1897, commemorating the election of Sidgwick as a fellow of the Royal Society of Sciences, Copenhagen, on 9 April [item 1].

Certificate, 14 December 1898, recording the nomination of Sidgwick as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Naples, Academy of Moral and Political Sciences [Item 3]. Notice from the Italian Ministry of Public Education, 23 January 1899, approving Sidgwick's election, according to a royal decree of 18 December 1898 [item 4]. Letter dated 29 January 1899 from the Secretary of the Academy, Luigi Nizaghia [?], informing Sidgwick of his election to a fellowship [item 5].

Sidgwick, Henry (1838–1900), philosopher

Draft or copy letter from Henry Sidgwick to Sir Louis Mallet.

Thanks Mallet for his long letter [94/111]. Contends that the latter exaggerates the extent of their disagreement in relation to various aspects of political and economic theory, with regard to, e.g., dispensing distributive justice, private capital employed in production. Refers also to what he [Sidgwick] says in chapter seven [of his book] on 'the "increasing inequalities" ', and acknowledges that the statement should be further explained, as Mallet 'understood it to contradict the conclusions of Giffen.' Claims that there is 'no such contradiction', and outlines what he believes Giffen attempted to prove in relation to the income of manual labourers, referring to the increasing difference between the highest and the lowest class of that group. Denies that he 'has "ignored the international point of view" in what [he says] of the nationalisation of the land.' Claims that '[t]he claim of the rest of the human race on the land now held by Englishmen is not in any way implicitly denied by the agreement of Englishmen to hold their land in common', and that it would only be affected by the prevention of immigration into England. Refers to his own paper read at the Political Economy Club. [Incomplete].

Sidgwick, Henry (1838–1900), philosopher

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to Arthur Sidgwick

Refers to a conversation they had about Arthur having been offered a teaching post in Glasgow, and whether he should take it or not. Were he in Arthur's position he would not go, but is inclined to think that Arthur should: his experience of teaching would make him 'peculiarly fitted for the work', and the 'long summer leisure' would give him more time to write than he would have if he stays in Oxford. Jebb's assumes that the annual salary for the position is £1,200, and [G. G.?] Ramsay shares that view of its value. They possible somewhat underrate the effect of the movement in education against compulsory Greek, but supposes that candidates for the Ministry 'must always supply a solid nucleus of Hellenists.'

Sidgwick, Henry (1838–1900), philosopher

Copy letter from Henry Sidgwick to Baron Friedrich von Hügel.

Refers to a letter from von Hügel some months previously on the subject of Sidgwick's' 'little book on the History of Ethics'. Explains that he did not reply because he miscalculated the time it would take him to finish his book on politics on which he was at that time working, and reports that he has only just sent it to the publisher. Explains that he is about to leave for a holiday in Switzerland, and assures von Hügel that his letter has not been discarded. States that the two points which von Hügel chiefly criticised in the book 'were both of much interest'; one of them being the contrast Sidgwick drew 'between Christian and pre-Christian civilisation in respect of religious persecution.' Assures him that he had no intention of making any charge against Christianity, and refers to Plato's advocacy of such persecution, as well as to the persecutions of the Roman Empire, and to Tacitus' thoughts on the subject. The other point to which von Hügel had referred was in relation to 'the vagaries of Luther and Calvin in sexual matters'. Admits that he ought to have said something about this, and explains that he did not mention it because he felt that he should 'maintain a severe reserve [on] the whole subject of sexual morality.' Claims that the relation of Christianity to this area of human life is a matter of extreme interest to him, and intends to add 'at least a few sentences' on the matter whenever another edition of his book is called for. Refers to another minor criticism, which von Hügel made in relation to the content of the book

Sidgwick, Henry (1838–1900), philosopher

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to J. Peile

Sends to a draft of his reply, Compulsory Classics to the statement 'on the other side' [on the issue of allowing of alternatives for one of the classical languages in the Previous Examination; included]. Claims that it will require 'some little enlargement', but that they have agreed that 'it is best to get several people to write', and states that he is trying to get [H. M.?] Butler to do so. Adds that it was agreed that the statement should appear as [by] Henry Sidgwick', and states that he is waiting until the statement from the opposition is published.

Sidgwick, Henry (1838–1900), philosopher

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to Mrs [Alice] Roden Noel

Copy of letter. Writes to express his sympathy to her on the death of her husband. Claims that he has been thinking of the latter and of the early years of their friendship, when they 'talked and wrote to each other, in the eagerness of youth, on all things in Heaven and Earth.' States that he believes that although Noel 'was keenly disappointed by the world's inadequae recognition of his genius he did his work in life none the less resolutely, and brought out his great gifts, and remained nobly true to his ideal.' Regrets that in later years he [HS] 'often vexed him somewhat by unsympathetic criticism of his [Behe] work', but states that he is glad to think that this never made any division between them. Adds how much he admired Noel as a poet, and hopes that she will always rely on him if the occasion should arise on which he could be of any service to her or to her children.

Sidgwick, Henry (1838–1900), philosopher

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to A. J. Patterson, with letter from James Bryce to Sidgwick

Letter from Sidgwick to Patterson, referring to an enclosed letter [from James Bryce, see below], which will show Patterson that 'the article on Civil Marriage on Hungary is launched on its course'. Reports that he tried to have it published in the Pall Mall Gazette, but the sub-editor wrote to him 'that it was too "ancient history" for a daily newspaper.' States that on closer inspection Sidgwick perceived that 'it proclaimed a triumph of the "Liberal Party" in Hungary', from which he inferred that it was 'not really suited to a Conservative organ, and so handed it on to Bryce'. Perceives that 'a division of labour is desirable in placing [Patterson's] article before an English public', States that 'those that relate to the claims of nationalities are likely to suit a Conservative taste, but those that relate to the claims of religious denominations must be allotted to Liberal editors.' Hopes that Patterson is in better health.

Letter from Bryce to Sidgwick, stating that the Speaker will insert Patterson's article next week. Hopes that the latter's health is, 'if no better, at any rate no worse'.

Sidgwick, Henry (1838–1900), philosopher

Henry Sidgwick: notebook containing additions incorporated in the sixth edition of Methods of Ethics

Note on first page by E[leanor] M[ildred] Sidgwick explaining that Methods of Ethics was being revised when Henry Sidgwick died, and that the 'additions etc are in his handwriting and have been bound [she thinks] by Miss E. C[onstance] Jones who helped him with the revision and completed it after his death'.

Sidgwick, Henry (1838–1900), philosopher

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to Messrs. A. and C. Black

Writes to ask permission to republish an article on Ethics [The History of Ethics], which he wrote for the Encyclopaedia Britannica. Refers to their having previously suggested its republication. Explains that other engagements have prevented him from rewriting it in an enlarged form, but now believes that 'it is desirable that it should be reprinted without much order that it may be accessible to students in a cheap form.' Expresses the desire that it be republished 'through the agency of Macmillan and Co.'

Sidgwick, Henry (1838–1900), philosopher

MS notes in Nora Sidgwick's hand

Includes the words that Henry would like to have said over his grave 'if it is decided not to have the Church of England service': 'Let us commend to the love of God with silent prayer the soul of a sinful man who partly tried to do his duty. It is by his wish that I say over his grave these words and no more'. Note that this was 'written down May 17 1900'.

Verses 'adopted by Henry Sidgwick. from Tennyson's Palace of Art when he left the Church of England in 1869', beginning with the lines: 'Yet pull not down my minster towers that were/So gravely gloriously wrought'. Page headed 'Henry's Texts', including [biblical] quotations.

Page headed 'Re new edition of Ethics'. Henry's desire is that, if he is not able to finish the revision, The Methods of Ethics 'be put through the press by Miss [E..E. C.] Jones without excerpts [he has] clearly indicated in the book itself or [his] MS notes of lectures that an alteration is required'. Suggests also the addition of a brief explanatory preface.

Additional notes relate to his works and the possibility of their publication. Believes that some of his philosophical works in which he attempts to define the scope of philosophy and its relation to, for example, psychology, logic, history and sociology, are most suitable for publication and study. Refers to a course of lectures on Kant, Green and Spencer 'which will be [more] easily brought out'. Refers also to a course of lectures on epistemology, which was delivered with Sigwart's Logic as a text book, and believes that part of it might be worth publishing. Suggests that [James] Ward might recommend someone who would read these works in order to select the portions he thought worth publishing. Insists, however, that Ward should not spend time on the matter that could be more profitably devoted to his own work. Discusses the difficulties that might be encountered in the publishing of his philosophical lectures, and refers to the part concerned with the relation of metaphysics and epistemology. Refers also to 'a discussion of Külpe's use of the terms and another discussion on idealism and realism, 'which will be found in the bundle relating to Külpe. List of some of Henry's works.

Sidgwick, Henry (1838–1900), philosopher

MS notes dictated by Henry Sidgwick with regard to his work and what is to be done with it

In Nora Sidgwick's hand. Refers to his lectures on philosophical subjects, some of which he believes should be published. Suggests that a young man might be employed to work on some of them and that [James] Ward might read the proofs through 'and give advice on any point of difficulty.' Refers also to a number of lectures that he had intended to make into a book on Kant and Kantism in England, and also to works on [T. H. ] Green, agnosticism and relativism and two lectures on [Herbert] Spencer. Does not believe that the lectures on Epistemology 'in connection with [Christoph von] Sigwart' are worth publishing as a continuous whole, but thinks certain parts of them might be published as fragments. Suggests Ward's involvement, so long as he would not undertake too much work.

Refers also to his articles on ethics, printed and unprinted. Expresses his wish that the question of 'the usefulness to mankind' be the '[ ] principle for deciding on publication', and that the volume of the labour required should be taken into account also. Would like lectures that are not published to be handed over to anyone who may be lecturing on that particular subject, and mentions in particular some fragmentary lectures on his book on The Elements of Politics, which he would like to be offered to Th[ ] or Dickinson or divided between them.

Has done a good deal of reading for a book, The Development of European Polity, for which the plan is sketched 'in the first lecture of a pamphlet containing 3 printed lectures.' Has been his view 'more and more of late years that a three fold treatment of Political Science is desirable for [ ]', and lays out his theory. Would like the teachers of Political Science to be consulted on the possibility of working out his plans with the aid of his material. Again suggests that a young man might be paid to work on this matter. Expresses concern over expense, and states that he believes his work to be 'too sketchy and amateurish for it to be desirable to use it otherwise than as material.' Was comtemplating giving up the idea of publication so long as he held his chair 'feeling that the time and labour required to make it an adequately scholarly work would not be given [ ]' with his duty as a Professor of Moral Philosophy.'

Sidgwick, Henry (1838–1900), philosopher

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to Baron Friedrich von Hügel

Thanks him for his 'kind and interesting letter.' Refers to his incurable disease and the effect that it would have on his quality of life and ability to carry out his work. States that it has caused him to value all the more the kindness of his friends. Feels that he is unworthy of von Hügel's praise, but appreciates the recognition of his friends of the work, which he looks on as incomplete and imperfect. Does not know what the future holds, and states that as soon as he is physically strong enough he will 'endeavour to endure [the] habits of daily work', but that he has been 'warned against anything like fatigue.' Claims that he shall be very sorry if he is not able to write something more on the subjects on which they have exchanged ideas at the Synthetic Society. Expresses his sympathy with Von Hügel in his anxiety about his sister's health.

Sidgwick, Henry (1838–1900), philosopher

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