The Idea of an University

John Henry Cardinal Newman

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  • EAN: 9780259636410

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The view taken of a University in these Discourses is the following: - That it is a place of teaching universal knowledge. This implies that its object is, on the one hand, intellectual, not moral; and, on the other, that it is the diffusion and extension of knowledge rather than the advancement. If its object were scientific and philosophical discovery, I do not sec why a University should have students ; if religious training, I do not see how it can be the scat of literature and science.

Such is a University in its essence, and independently of its relation to the Church. But, practically speaking, it cannot fulfil its object duly, such as I have described it, without the Church's assistance; or, to use the theological term, the Church is necessary for its integrity. Not that its main characters arc changed by this incorporation: it still has the office of intellectual education ; but the Church steadies it in the performance of that office.

Such arc the main principles of the Discourses which follow; though it would be unreasonable for me to expect that I have treated so large and important a field of thought with the fulness and precision necessary to secure me from incidental misconceptions of my meaning oil the part of the reader.
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