Page:1902 Encyclopædia Britannica - Volume 26 - AUS-CHI.pdf/106

This page needs to be proofread.


78

BAIN,

ALEXANDER

who, through ill-health, was unable to discharge the active Logic. This, too, was a work designed specially for the duties of the chair. This post, he occupied for three use of students, based on Mill, but differing from him in successive sessions, during which time he continued writing many particulars, and having as distinctive features the for the Westminster, and also in 1842 helped Mill with the treatment of the doctrine of the conservation of energy in revision of the MS. of his System of Logic, giving special connexion with causation and the detailed application of aid in the province of Induction, and supplying many of the principles of logic to the various sciences. After the the more important examples of the experimental methods. publication of the Logic, his eminent services to education In 1844, when the chair of Natural Philosophy was vacant in Scotland were recognized by the conferment of the through the death of Dr Knight, he filled the gap until honorary degree of Doctor of Laws by the University of the appointment of a new professor. He was unsuccessful Edinburgh in 1871. Next came two publications in “ The in his application for the chair; but, in 1845, he was International Scientific Series,” namely, Mind and Body appointed Professor of Mathematics and Natural Philo- (1872), and Education as a Science (1879). The first of sophy in the Andersonian University of Glasgow. This these is a re-statement of Mr Bain’s intellectual system, he did not long retain, but, preferring a wider field, resigned with an appended chapter on the history of the conception the position and devoted himself to literary work, partly of the Soul; and the second carries the principles of in connexion with the magazines, but still more in the psychology with great thoroughness into the province of production of scientific manuals and philosophical articles teaching. All these works, from the Higher English Grammar for Messrs Chambers of Edinburgh. In 1848 he removed to London to fill a post in the Board of Health under downwards, were written by Mr Bain during his twenty Edwin Chadwick. While resident in London he was a years’ occupancy of the chair of Logic in the University member of the brilliant coterie that included George Grote of Aberdeen. To the same period belongs his institution and John Stuart Mill, and was associated with them in the of the philosophical journal Mind; the first number of leading political, social, and intellectual movements of the which appeared in January 1876, under the editorship of a time. In 1855 he published his first large work, The former pupil and attached disciple, Professor G. Groom Senses and the Intellect, which was followed in 1859 by Robertson of University College, London. To this journal The Emotions and the Will. Through these two treatises Mr Bain contributed many important articles and discushis place as an independent thinker was assured. This led sions ; and he continued sole proprietor of it till Robertson, in 1860 to his appointment by the Crown, on the recom- owing to ill-health, resigned the editorship in 1891, when mendation of the then Home Secretary, Sir G. Cornewall it passed into other hands. Feeling the burden of the Lewis, to the chair of Logic and English in the University teaching work as years advanced, Dr Bain resigned his of Aberdeen. That chair had just been created, on the professorship in 1880. This did not, however, mean amalgamation of the two universities (King’s and Marischal) cessation of intellectual activity or of productive energy. by the Scottish Universities Commission of 1858 ; and Mr On the contrary, his interest in thought and his desire to Bain became its first occupant. In his new capacity he complete the scheme of work which he had mapped out had a twofold work to perform. Up to this date , neither for himself in earlier years remained as keen as ever. Logic nor English had received adequate attention in Aber- Accordingly, in 1882 appeared the Biography of Janies deen, and now was the opportunity for furthering the Mill, and accompanying it John Stuart Mill: A Criticism, interests of both. Mr Bain threw himself with great with Personal Recollections. Next came (1884) a collection energy into the task. Not content with shaping lectures of articles and papers, most of which had appeared in for his class, he set to work by published writings to magazines, under the title of Practical Essays. I his was instruct the outside world also; and in this way he suc- succeeded in 1887 by the first volume of the new edition ceeded not only in raising the standard of education in the of the Rhetoric, devoted to the handling of the Intellectual north of Scotland, but also in forming a school of philo- qualities of style, and, along with it, a book On leaching sophy, and in widely influencing the teaching of English English, being an exhaustive application of the principles grammar and of composition. His efforts were first of rhetoric to the criticism of style, for the use of teachers. directed to the English part of his charge. This resulted The following year the second volume of the new Rhetoric in the publication of the Higher English Grammar in appeared, dealing with the Emotional qualities of style. 1863, followed in 1866 by the Manual of Rhetoric, in 1872 This completed, attention was next directed to a revision by A First English Grammar, and in 1874 by the Com- of The Senses and the Intellect, which resulted in the fourth panion to the Higher Grammar. . These works covered a edition of the work, published in 1894, in which may be large field, and by their original views and new methods found Dr Bain’s last word on psychology; for, although a aroused much interest, and met with wide acceptance in new edition of The Emotions and the Will was brought the scholastic world. But the other subject of his chair out in 1899, the author’s physical condition did not permit also called for attention. No doubt his own philosophical of any recasting of the treatise such as had been accorded writings already published, especially The Senses and the to the companion volume. Dr Bain’s life has been mainly that of a thinker and a Intellect (to which was added, in 1861, The Study of Character), were ready to hand for the purposes of prelec- man of letters. But he is also so far a man of affairs that tion ; but the volumes were too large for effective use in he has always taken a keen interest, and frequently an the class-room. A psychological handbook was needed, active part, in the political and social movements of the for there was hardly anything of that stamp in existence, day ; and so highly did the students of Aberdeen rate his certainly nothing at all satisfactory. Accordingly, in 1868, practical ability that, after his retirement from the chair he published his Manual of Mental and Moral Science, of Logic, they twice in succession elected him Lord Rector mainly a condensed form of his own larger philosophical of the University, each term of office extending over three treatises, but with the doctrines re-stated, and. in many years. This was no mere compliment to a former professor, instances freshly illustrated, and with many important of whom they were naturally proud, but a deliberate selecadditions, chiefly in the shape of chapters on the history tion of the man whom they believed best able to guide the of the intellectual controversies (universal, sense-perception, affairs of the university as head of its superior court. Being &c.), and of a recasting of the ethical positions, and. an the acknowledged leader of the Progressive party, he was elaborate analysis of the leading systems of Ethics, ancient all on the side of reform, pushing forward the interests of and modern. The year 1870 saw the publication of the science, and strenuously advocating, in the face of much