Item 62 - Letter from William Johnson [post Cory] to Henry Sidgwick

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Add. MS c/94/62


Letter from William Johnson [post Cory] to Henry Sidgwick


  • 3 May 1868 (Creation)

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Reports that his headmaster 'has commited himself to the teaching of physics' at Eton, and is unable to find anyone to come and teach it there. Asks Sidgwick if he thinks it worthwhile to invite Danby, who is at Trinity, to the school to teach the subject during June and July. States that the post would only be temporary as Hornby 'has an Oxford man in view whom he hopes to appoint.' Claims that his contemporaries at Trinity 'are not so much interested in the enlargement of schooling', and doubts whether they knew Danby by sight. Reports that there are soon to be 'two men resident [at Eton] one professing experimental science the other natural history, [say] botany', and that the mathematical teachers begin that week 'teaching the element of mechanics and astronomy.'

Relates that seven or eight of their classical men will be working [at] French, and that a third French master is to be added to the two existing ones, but cannot be found. Also reports that their German, 'hitherto an extra master, is to teach about thirty volunteers out of the first hundred boys', that the Italian master probably will do the same, and that 'Hornby thinks of absorbing the residue, in logic, himself.' States that 'play hours remain unbroken' however. Announces that he has asked Balfour to let him see the questions Sidgwick set him in philosophy. Expresses the hope of persuading John [Mozley?] 'to do the same in King's'. Reports that a year ago he sent to the latter a schedule of Jowett's and Ilbert's subjects for essays, 'but nothing came of it.'

Assures Sidgwick that Hornby would remunerate Danby 'like any London lecturer such as Rodwell when Browning [tried]', and that he would be 'made comfortable'. Declares that Eton is 'a very pleasant place in summer.'

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