life of that day by the present standard of an English university, we of course commit great injustice; we can only compare it with the corresponding English conditions of the same period; and these had, as the accomplished Edward Everett
, fresh from German universities, had written, absolutely no advantage over the American Cambridge
He wrote to my father from Oxford
(June 6, 1818): “There is more teaching and more learning in our American Cambridge than there is in both the English
universities together, thoa between them they have four times our number of students.”
Yet he had, with Cogswell
, written letter after letter to show the immeasurable superiority of Gottingen
to the little American institution; and his low estimate of the English
universities as they were in 1818 is confirmed by those who teach in them to-day.
It is fair to say that, provincial as the Cambridge
of sixty years ago may have been, it offered at least a somewhat refined provincialism, with the good manners and respectable attainments prevailing at that time.