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pointments and lucrative practice, in oppositionto college influence. But the exceptions only confirm the grievance. It is manifest that the college, as now constituted, is a partial source of rank, power, and gain to the fellows, and a grievous cause of oppression, degradation, and poverty to the licentiates."
After this statement, it is very natural to enquire what are the superior advantages of medir cal education at Oxford and Cambridge, which entitle the graduates of those universities to so many exclusive privileges; and we are rather surprised to find, as the result of our enquiries* that, while not above one or two students of medicine graduate at those seminaries annually, the university of Edinburgh is every season attended by a greater number than have studied at either Oxford or Cambridge, during any two.centuries since their foundation.—Is not this fact a sufficient proof of the relative estimation in which these universities are held ?—At the period when the charter was granted, Italy was the chief seat of medical instruction. France, Holland, and Germany, have been successively distinguished by the most celebrated medical schools, as Scotland is at present. But in the vicissitudes of revolving centuries, the English universities have never emerged from obscurity as the theatre of medicine. Harvey, Sydenham and Mead, whose
busts have been thought most worthy of adorning the hall of the College of Physicians, were not educated at the English universities. It is however from Oxford and Cambridge, that the College candidates assume their title to share in the monopoly, whilst it is in the schools of the licentiates, or in foreign universities, that they learn tlieir profession. Medical Science must be courted where she resides: with Boerhaare, in Holland j in Germany, with Haller; or with Cullen at Edinburgh.
Accordingly we find that those, who originally framed the charter and acts of parliament, in favour of the College, have not in any single instance allowed an expression to escape them, which could be construed into a favourable opinion of local graduation, as a test of medical fitness. Of the first six members of the corporation, three were graduates of foreign universities, Chambre, Ferdinand de Victoria and Linacre; and these were also physicians to the' King. Mead, Akenside and Sloane, and, I believe, all the most distinguished Physicians who became members of the corporation, during a* later period, were similarly educated. They were* admitted, it is true, after being pro forma incor-' porated into the English universities. But liberal' incorporation, in consequence of an understanding with the College, being since done away,
those illustrious characters would now be effectually debarred from ever gaining admission inte* the Fellowship. They must be contented,, like, the great Sydenham, with the humble rank of a licentiate, unless, by humoring, the whims of the president for ten years, or serving an apprenticeship of seven, the humiliating lot should at length fall upon them gf being admitted specialigratia, or by running the gauntlet of half a dozen ballotings and examinations.
If we could for a moment overlook the glaring illegality of this bye-law of exclusion, its gross injustice to the great body of medical men, and its pernicious consequences to the public, it would in another point of view be a curious subject of speculation. That a faction should, in days not absolutely barbarous, dare to make a bye-law, and that successive factions should dare to perpetuate it, proclaiming, in effect, that none but the few individuals, who happen to be educated at the same schools of physick with themselves, are worthy of sharing the honours and emoluments of the profession, is a piece of modesty which is probably without a parallel. It would no doubt be edifying to hear the reasons of the preference from their own mouths, if they would condescend to speak plainly. Perhaps their motives are various j but they may probably all be reduced to the following heads: "We admit you to the highest honours of the profession, because at your university so much more time is consumed in learning Greek and Latin than at other schools of medicine, and because so much more Greek and Latin is required to cure the people of the metropolis, than those of the country, and so much more to cure the higher than the lower orders. They also learnto dress more elegantly and iomake a genteeler bow at Oxford and Cambridge thanat Edinburgh and Glasgow; it is therefore particu. larly expedient, as the Fellows are destined to practise among the first circles, that they should be exclusively selected from the former. A graduate .of Oxford or Cambridge, will enter a lady's bedchamber with a much better grace than one of Edinburgh, Glasgow, St. Andrew's, or Aberdeen. "Which of them exhibit the most proper remedies, when .there, is a matter that doth not concern the College."—Let us put the matter in other points of view: "We admit you as Fellows, because you are nominally from universities in which your profession cannot be learnt; and we exclude you, because you have been taught in universities, where the best medical education prevails." Or thus: "We admit you, because the monkish statutes of your universities enjoin an attendance of fourteen years to acquire Xhe small portion of medical education they possess; and we exclude you, because ^qu presume to acquire, in four or five years, all the theoretical know
ledge that exists in the most renowned medical schools." Or more laconically: "We admit you as fellows, because you are English; and we reject you, because you are Scotch" Or probably more justly: "We admit you exclusively as fellows, because, as you are few in number, we shall have the more good things to sh are; and we reject you, because you are so numerous a body, that if you come among us, the spoils will not be worth the division." These are all the motives that I am able to divine, for first enacting, and afterwards adhering so tenaciously to this extraordinary bye-law of exclusion: and the College, if they cannot assign more rational ones, will, I fear, remain subject to imputations of folly, illiberality, and selfishness. It has already been shewn to be not only unauthorized by, but even contrary to the very spirit of the charter and acts of parliament, by which the College was founded,—that it is, in effect, an usurpation: and it will appear no less clearly, that it is destitute of the only legitimate excuse, (if I may so speak) that can be made for usurpation,-—being conducive to the public good. It has obviously a, diametrically opposite tendency.
But let the facts speak for themselves, Since the fellowship has been rendered exclusive, have not the most illiterate quacks and impostors, particularly in the metropolis, perpetrated their de» structive practices without the slightest restraint