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Albert (1819-1861), Prince Consort of Queen Victoria
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Letters from Thomas Carlyle to Rev. Edleston and replies to an invitation to a dinner at Trinity in honour of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, the Vice-Chancellor

There are 10 letters from Thomas Carlyle, and mixed in with the dinner invitation replies, three other letters to Joseph Edleston: from William Edleston, A. A. Vansittart, and "Carolus Priamus". The dinner invitation replies are all for the dinner held in honour of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, the new Vice-Chancellor of the University on 6 July 1847, and are mostly addressed to the Master and Fellows of Trinity College.

Edleston, Joseph (c 1816-1895) Fellow of Trinity College Cambridge

Letter from Charles Brooke

29 Keppel Street - CB wants his family to enjoy a little sea air while he works on WW's magnetic observatory. Since he has borne the costs for the apparatus so far on behalf of WW, he is finding it 'somewhat burdensome to my limited means'. Since CB's promised renumeration will shortly be before the Government, could WW inform Prince Albert [as Chancellor] of his views respecting the importance of automatic registration in understanding the 'relations of terrestrial magnetism, and requesting him to use his influence in my behalf'.

Letter from George Airy

Flamsteed House, Greenwich - Further to his paper on the Roots of Equations, GA would be happy to pay the Cambridge Philosophical Society for the printing of it. In Aberdeen, as Robert Willis can confirm, GA placed his 'opinion in opposition to that of all fashionable engineers as to the effect of the tides in tidal harbours'. GA is pleased he did not go to Balmoral: 'It seems as if the Queen was haughty and in a pet, and the Prince was weak. Heaven defend us from such associations!' GA has not heard of Le Verrier's [Urbain J. J. Le Verrier] belief that 'a little planet is to account for the movements of Mercury - can WW give him the reference?

Letter from Edward M. Young to Henry Sidgwick

Appreciates Sidgwick's long letter. Reports that he has been well informed of Trinity, and more particularly, of 'Apostolic' news. Refers to his present illness. Asks for Sidgwick's advice in relation to whether or not he should take the Tripos examination or to stake his credit on some future Fellowship Exam. Asks whether he should study Pindar, Martial, Propertius and others. States that if he has any time it must be devoted partly to history and partly to '[Gk] Comp'. Asks if it is 'not fearful to forget the Greek for the simplest words, and to feel as well able to compose an air as an Iambic'. Reports that to him were sent three copies of Horace [at the University of Athens by G. O. Trevelyan?] which he discusses. Claims that '[Burnand] would have written a more telling piece for the stage, and Trevelyan should have produced something more worthy of his pen for the general public', but says that it nevertheless gave him an hour's laughter. Expresses regret that he missed 'the Professor's [Rhesio]', and asks if he was Platonical or ironical [W. H. Thompson, Regius Professor of Greek?]. Refers to a report in 'the Standard' about M. Milnes' attempt to canvass for Lord Palmerston in Cambridge within a few hours of the Chancellor's death [Prince Albert, Chancellor of Cambridge University until his death]. Expresses his contentment that Sidgwick [and others] 'have thrown the mantle upon [John?] Stanning', and supposes that the Duke of Devonshire 'is pretty safe of the Chancellorship'. Presumes that [Oscar?] Browning 'must have come down heavy upon [Sidgwick and others]...with his loyalty, during the last few days.' Refers to 'the great American debate', and is glad that the Arbitration [ ] will now be squashed. Refers to Miller's arguments, which he claims he could not have endured any more than Sidgwick. Tells him to remind Cowell, if he is still at Cambridge, that he promised to write to him.

Young, Edward Mallet (1839-1900) Head Master of Sherborne School

Atkinson/Williams family correspondence

Five letters and one piece of humorous writing from the family of Michael Angelo Atkinson and Amelia Williams, with two letters from Adam Sedgwick in April 1856 about Atkinson and Williams' engagement, to Amelia Williams and to her mother Anna Williams. With two earlier letters: a report on Michael Angelo Atkinson by James Tate to Atkinson's father Peter, dated 12 Dec. 1831, and a letter from M. A. Atkinson at Trinity College to his sister Harriet about French literature. Two more items are written by Harriet Miller, the wife of William Hallowes Miller and a cousin? of the Williams family: one, a letter to her Aunt [Anna Williams?] includes a long description of the dinner held at Trinity College in honour of the Queen and Prince Albert on his installation as Chancellor of Cambridge University in July 1847; the other, a humorous essay about water closets and the loss of the garden privy.

Letter from Adam Sedgwick

AS has just received WW's pamphlet ['Notes on the Oxford University Bill in Reference to the Colleges at Cambridge', 1854]. Colonel Grey told AS at Buckingham Palace that the Prince [Prince Albert] 'had been astounded at the news of wholesale rejection, by the Senate, of the graces proposed by the study syndicate'. AS thinks this very unfortunate: 'If Cambridge refuse to move by her own internal organs, what are the powers external to us likely to say and do?' AS has just finished WW's pamphlet and agrees with most of it.

William Whewell to Julius Charles Hare

WW is pleased that JCH agrees that Prince Albert is the fittest person for Chancellorship: 'all people here fall in with the plan, except the Johnians who have put forwards Lord Powis, and must wait to see what he will do'. WW is glad that no one thought of Lord Lyndhurst: 'Indeed I do not see how they could, after (not to speak of other grounds) the atrocious bad faith of the heads of the party to their followers'. WW gives a brief history of an impoverished Trinity sizar, John Cartman, who WW sent away on finding his 'character and conduct not good'. He has subsequently become a private tutor and WW hopes he has mended his ways.

Letter from Henry Sidgwick to Mary "Minnie" Benson

Admits that it was his own fault that the letters were lost, and only regrets that his mother has had to write again. Reports that his spiritual discoveries 'are rather languishing at present', and that Uncle Robert has sent him a newspaper containing a story about a woman's dream which predicted the death of her son. Admits that he is getting very lazy about his German. Asks her how long she intends to stay at Rugby at Christmas. Refers to the degeneracy of his handwriting. Reports that he has a young American [William Everett] reading with him; 'a very nice fellow though somewhat odd', who has been telling him about America. Refers to the [British] press, which was full of 'those foolishly irritating articles', which he thought would bring on a French war. Mentions that he began to think of emigrating to America when they appeared. Reports that the Rifle-corps [in Cambridge] 'are in high glee because Prince Albert has taken them under this protection', and explains that they 'had been almost wet-blanketed by Lord Hardwicke (our Lord Lieutenant) who refused to grant commissions to under-graduates...' Remarks that they show their patriotism for the drill, 'for the most part at 8 o clock in the morning...' Supposes that [Charles?] Kingsley 'is strong on Riflecorps', and claims that they are all very well except at Cambridge. Sends his love to Edward.

Letter from Adam Sedgwick

It has been some months since AS received a letter from Professor Selwyn informing him 'that there would be a great meeting at Cambridge in the Michaelmas, I am for the purpose of promoting a Church Mission to Southern Africa. The Bishop of Oxford, Mr Gladstone and other distinguished persons were expected to attend; and it was hoped that Prince Albert might take the chair as Chancellor of the University'. He subsequently heard that 'Gladstone's attendance was by no means certain; and without a more official communication from the Committee I did not think myself justified in troubling our Chancellor'. However, AS received another communication yesterday from the acting Secretary of the Cambridge Committee: 'I immediately forwarded his letter 'to General Grey at Balmoral; that they might be laid before the Prince'. AS indicated to the Prince that he did not know whether the plan of the Mission had arrived at a mature state, and whether it could be regarded as a general academical movement. Could WW give him any more information on the subject?

William Whewell to Julius Charles Hare

WW is sorry but not surprised that there is to be an election for the Chancellorship between Prince Albert and Lord Powis [see WW to JCH, 17 Feb. 1847]. 'Goulburn [Henry Goulburn] is one of the Peelites; and the manner in which they deceived and disappointed those whom they had led to depend upon them cannot fail to excite a strong feeling of indignation. And laying aside all strong feelings, I do not see how Peel and his followers can ever again be of service preserving the institutions of the country'. WW does not see 'how Goulburn can be supported by those who have hitherto supported him; since his course, as a Peelite, must be hereafter different from what it has hitherto been. I should have great difficulty in voting for him on this ground'. Further, if 'Goulburn is thrown out, it will not be an anti-Romish cry; for he has, in his letter to the electors, declared himself against the 'endowment of the Roman Catholic Clergy in England or Ireland''. However, 'I am not much conciliated by Goulburn's anti-Romish declaration, because I think it would go for nothing in the conduct of his associates; and I think, too, that it is only made for the sake of getting a few votes, and means nothing as to his own convictions'.

William Whewell: papers relating to royal visits

The papers relate to the visits to Cambridge by Queen Victoria and Prince Albert in 1843 and 1847, primarily the latter, when Prince Albert was installed as Chancellor of Cambridge University.

Whewell, William (1794-1866), college head and writer on the history and philosophy of science