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DEAN COLET AND SAINT PAUL'S SCHOOL. JOHN COLET, D. D., Dean of the Cathedral Church of St. Paul in London, was born in that city in 1466, the eldest son of Sir John Colet, twice mayor. In 1483, he was sent to Magdalen College, Oxford, where he passed seven years, and took the usual degrees in arts. Here he studied Latin, with some of the Greek authors through a Latin medium, and mathematics. Having thus laid a good foundation for learning at home, he traveled in France and Italy from 1493 to 1497; he had previously been preferred to the rectory of Dennington, in Suffolk, being then in acolyth’s orders. At Paris, Colet became acquainted with the scholar Budæus, and was afterwards introduced to Erasmus. In Italy he contracted a friendship with Grocyn, Linacre, Lilly, and Latimer, all of whom were studying the Greek language, then but little known in England. Whilst abroad, he devoted himself to divinity, and the study of the civil and canon law. Colet returned to England in 1497, and subsequently rose through various degrees of preferment to be Dean of St. Paul's. By his lectures, and other means, he greatly assisted the spirit of inquiry into the Holy Scriptures which eventually produced the Reformation. He had, however, many difficulties to contend with; and tired with trouble and persecution, he withdrew from the world, resolving, in the midst of life and health, to consecrate his fortune to some lasting benefaction, which he performed in the foundation of St. Paul's School, at the cast end of St. Paul's churchyard, in 1512; and, "it is hard to say whether he left better lands for the maintenance of his school, or wiser laws for the government thereof."—According to Fuller).
The original school-house, built 1508-12, was destroyed in the Great Fire of 1666, but was rebuilt by Wren. This second school was taken down in 1824, and the present school built of stone from the designs of George Smith: it has a handsome central portico upon a rusticated base, projecting over the street pavement. The original endowment, and for several years the only endowment of the school, was 551. 148. 104d., the annual rents of estates in Buckinghamshire, which now produce 18581. 168. 101d. a-year; and, with other property, make the present income of the school upwards of 50001. Lilly, the eminent grammarian, the friend of Erasmus and Sir Thomas More, was the first master of St. Paul's, and “ Lilly's Grammar” is used to this day in the school; the English rudiments were written by Colet, the preface to the first edition probably by Cardinal Wolsey; the Latin syntax chiefly by Erasmus, and the remainder by Lilly: thus, the book may have been the joint production of four of the greatest scholars of the age. Colet directed that the children should not use tallow but wax candles in the school; fourpence entrance-money was to be given to the poor scholar who swept the school; and the masters were to have livery gowns, “ delivered in clothe."
Colet died in his 53rd year, in 1519. He wrote several works in Latin; the grammar which he composed for his school was called “Paul's Accidence.” The original Statutes of the school, signed by Dean Colet, were, many years since, accidentally picked up at a bookseller's, and by the finder presented to the British Museum. The school is for 153 boys “of every nation, country, and class :" the 153 alluding to the number of fishes taken by St. Peter (John, xxi. 2). The education is entirely classical; the presentations to the school are in the gift of the Master of the Mercers' Company; and scholars are admitted at fifteen, but eligible at any age after that. Their only expense is for books and
wax tapers. There are several valuable exhibitions, decided at the Apposition, held in the first three days of the fourth week after Easter, when a commeniorative oration is delivered by the senior boy, and prizes are presented from the governors. In the time of the founder, the “Apposition dinner" was “an assembly and a litell dinner, ordayned by the surveyor, not exceedynge the pryce of four nobles."
In the list of eminent Paulines (as the scholars are called), are, Sir Anthony Denny and Sir William Paget, privy councillors to Henry VIII. ; John Leland, the antiquary; John Milton, our great epic and poet; Samuel Pepys, the diarist; John Strype, the ecclesiastical historian; Dr. Calamy, the High Churchman; the Great Duke of Marlborough; R. W. Elliston, the comedian; Sir C. Mansfield Clarke, Bart. ; Lord Chancellor Truro, &c.
says that he "
EDWARD VI. AND CHRIST'S HOSPITAL. The most munificent patron of education who ever sat upon the British throne was Edward VI., the only son of Henry VIII. who survived him. He was born at Hampton Court in 1537, on the 12th of October, which being the vigil of St. Edward, he received his Christian appellation in commemoration of the canon. ized king. His mother, Queen Jane Seymour, died on the 12th day after giving him birth. The child had three step-mothers in succession after this; but he was probably not much an object of attention with either of them. Sir John Hayward, who has written the history of his life and reign with great fullness,
was brought up among nurses until he arrived at the age of six years. He was then committed to the care of Dr. (afterwards Sir Anthony) Cook, and Mr. (afterwards Sir John) Cheko, the former of whom appears to have undertaken the prince's instruction in philosophy and divinity, the latter in Greek and Latin." He succeeded to the throne when little more than nine years of age. The conduct of the young prince towards his instructors was uniformly courteous; and his generous disposition won for him the highest esteem. In common with the children of the rich and great, he was from his cradle surrounded with means of amusement. It is related that at the age of five years, a splendid present was made to him by his godfather, Archbishop Cranmer; the gift was a costly service of silver, consisting of dishes, plates, spoons, &c. The child was overjoyed with the present, when the prince's valet, seeking to impress on his mind its value, observed: “Your bighness will be pleased to remember that although this beautiful present is yours, it must be kept entirely to yourself; for if others are permitted to touch it, it will be entirely spoiled.” “My good Hinbrook," replied the prince, mildly, “if no one can touch these valuables without spoiling them, how do you then suppose they would ever have been given to me?” Next day, Edward invited a party of young friends to a feast, which was served upon the present of plate; and upon the departure of the young guests, he gave to each of them an article of the service, as a mark of regard.
Cranmer, to encourage Edward in his studies, was in the habit of corresponding with him once a week, and requiring of him an account of what he had done during that time. The prince also complied with the request of his venerable godfather, by keeping a journal, for which purpose he divided a sheet of paper into five columns, and under that arrangement recorded his progress in mythology, history, geography, mathematics, and philosophy.
At the age of fifteen, Edward is said to have possessed a critical knowledge of the Greek and Latin languages; and to have conversed fluently in French, Spanish, and Italian. A manuscript is still preserved in the British Museum, containing a collection of his exercises in Greek and Latin ; several of his letters, in French and Latin, written with singular accuracy of diction, are also extant; and when to his other accomplishments it is added that he was well versed in natural philosophy, astronomy, and logic, his acquirements will be allowed to have been extraordinary. “This child,” says Carden, the celebrated physician, who had frequently conversed with Edward, “was so bred, had such parts, was of such expectation, that he looked like a miracle of a man; and in him was such an attempt of Nature, that not only England, but the world, had reason to lament his being so early snatched away."
Few events in the history of Christian benevolence are so minutely recorded as the foundation of Christ's Hospital. At the same time, Edward founded St. Thomas's and Bridewell Hospitals; the three foundations forming part of a comprehensive scheme of charity, resulting from a sermon preached before the King by the pious Bishop Ridley, at Westminster, in 1552. The Bishop, discoursing on the excellence of charity, “made a fruitful and goodly exhortation to the rich to be merciful unto the poor, and also to move such as were in authority, to travail by some charitable ways and means, to comfort and relieve them.” Edward's heart was touched by the earnestness of the appeal, and "understanding that a great number of poor people did swarm in this realm, and chiefly in the city of London, and that no good order was taken of them,” he sent the Bishop a message when the sermon was ended, desiring him not to depart till he had spoken with him. As soon as he was at leisure, he took him aside into a private gallery, where he made him sit down, and be covered; and giving him hearty thanks for his sermon, entered into conversation on several points, which, according to his usual practice, he had noted down for special consideration. Of this interview, the venerable Ridley remarked: “Truly, truly, I could never have thought that excellency to have been in his grace, but that I beheld and heard it in him."
Adverting, at length, to the Bishop's exhortation in behalf of the poor, Edward greatly commended it, and it had evidently made a powerful impression upon his mind. He then acknowledged the application of Ridley's exhortation to himself, and prayed the Bishop to say his mind as to what ways were best to be taken. Ridley hesitated for a moment to reply. At length, he observed that the city of London, as well on account of the extreme poverty which prevailed there on the one hand, and of the wise and charitable disposition of its more wealthy inhabitants on the other, would afford a favorable opening for the exercise of the royal bounty; and advised that letters should be forthwith directed to the Lord Mayor, requiring him, with such assistants as he might think meet, to consult upon the matter. Edward wrote the letter upon the instant, and charged Ridley to deliver it himself; and his delight was manifested in the zeal with which he undertook the commission, for the King's letter and message were delivered on the same evening. On the following day Ridley dined with the Lord Mayor, who, with two Aldermen and six Commoners, took the King's proposal into consideration ; other councillors were added, and at length the plan recommended to his Majesty was to provide Christ's Hospital for the education of poor children; St. Thomas's, for the relief of the sick and