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sEWELL—SEWERAGE

devoted his time to the practice of his profession and to lecturing and writing.

The best biography of Seward is that by Frederic Bancroft, T he Lge of William H. Seward (2 vols., New York, 1900); see also, The Life and Works of William H. Seward (5 vols., new ed., Boston, 1883), edited by George E. Baker; William H. Seward: an Autobiography from 1891 to 18 34, with a Memoir of his Life and Selections from his Letters (3 vols., New York, 1891), by his son, Frederick W. Seward: William H. Seward's Travels around the World (New York, 1873), by his adopted daughter, Olive R. Seward; Lincoln and Seward, (New York, 1874), by Gideon Welles; and William Henry Seward (new ed., Boston, 1899), by T. K. Lothrop, in the “American Statesmen Series."


SEWELL, WILLIAM (1804-1874), English divine and author, was born at Newport, Isle of Wight, on the 2 3rd of January 1804, the son of a solicitor. He was educated at Winchester and Merton College, Oxford, was elected a fellow of Exeter College in 1827, and from 1831-1853 was a tutor there. From 1836-1841 he was Whyte's Professor of Moral Philosophy. Sewell, who took holy orders in 1830, was a friend of Pusey, Newman and Keble in the earlier days of the Tractarian movement, but subsequently considered that the Tractarians leaned too much, towards Rome, and dissociated himself from them. When, however, in 1849, J. A. F roude published his Nemesis of Faith, Sewell denounced the wickedness of the book to his class, and, when one of his pupils confessed to the possession of a copy, seized it, tore it to pieces, and threw it in the fire. In 1843 he, with some friends, founded at Rathfarnham, near Dublin, St Columba's College, designed to be a sort of Irish Eton, and in 1847 helped to found Radley College. Sewell's intention was that each of these schools should be conducted on strict High Church principles. He was originally himself one of the managers of St Columba, and sub-warden of Radley, but his business management was not successful in either case, and his personal responsibility for the debts contracted by Radley caused the sequestration of his Oxford fellowship. In 1862 his financial difficulties compelled him to leave England for Germany, and he did not return till 1870. He died on the 14th of November 1874.

His publications include translations of the Agamemnon (1846), Georgics (1846 and 1854) and Odes and Epodes of Horace (1850); An Introduction to the Dialogues of Plato (1841); Christian Politics (1844); The Nation, the Church and the University of Oxford (1849); Christian Vestiges of Creation (1861).,

His elder brother, Richard Clarke Sewell (1803-1864), practised successfully as a barrister in England, and then went to Australia, where he obtained a large criminal practice. In 1857 he was appointed reader in law to the University of Melbourne. He was the author of a large number of legal works. A younger brother, Henry Sewell (1807-1879), who became a solicitor, acted in London as secretary and deputy-chairman of the Canterbury Association for the Colonization of New Zealand, and eventually went out to the colony, and in 1854 was elected to the House of Representatives. In 1856 he became first premier of New Zealand. Subsequently he held the office of attorney-general (1861-1863) and minister of justice (1864-1865 and 186Q-1872). In 1876 he returned to England, where he died on the 14th of May 1879.

Another brother, James Edwards Sewell (1810-1903), warden of New College, Oxford, was educated at Winchester and New College. In 1830 he became a fellow of his College, and practically passed the rest of his life there, being elected to the headship in 1860. The first University Commission had just released the colleges from the fetters of their original statutes, and Sewell was called on to determine his attitude towards the strong reforming party in New College. Though himself instinctively conservative, he determined that it was his duty to give effect to the desire of the majority, with the result that New College led the way in the general reform movement, and from being one of the smallest became the second largest college in Oxford. Sewell was vice-chancellor of the university 1874-1878. He died in his ninety-third year on the 29th of January 1903, having been warden for 43 years, and was interred in the College cloisters.

A sister, Elizabeth Missing Sewell (1815-1906), was the author of Amy Herbert and many other High Church novels, and of several devotional books. An edition of her works was published in eleven volumes (1886).


SEWER, a large drain for carrying away by water excreta and other refuse, known therefore collectively as “ sewage” (see SEWERAGE below); also, in a wider and older sense, the term for conduits such as are used for the draining of the fens, or of

the water-courses, sea-defences, &c., over which the local

authorities, known as commissioners of sewers, exercise jurisdiction. In English law a “ sewer, ” as distinguished from a “ drain, ” is that which carries away the sewage of more houses or ~-other buildings than one. Many fanciful derivations of the word have been given, but there seems no doubt that the word is from O. Fr. seuwiere, Med. Lat. seweria, the sluice of pa mill-pond, from the Late Lat. ex-aquaria, a means of conducting water out of anything; this is paralleled by Eng. “ ewer, ” a water-jug, which undoubtedly comes from aquaria, through O. Fr. ewe, for water, mod. eau. 7

The old name “ sewer, ” for a table attendant who placed and removed the dishes from the table, acted as waiter, &c., must be distinguished. In the household ordinances of Edward II. the word seems to appear in the form asseour, and in those of Edward IV. as assewer, an officer of the household who superintended the serving of a banquet. Asseour represents O. Fr. arseoir, to seat, set, Lat. assidere. The word was early connected with “ sewe " or “-sew " A juice, broth, pottage, 'cognate with sucus, juice.


SEWERAGE, a general term. for the process of systematically collecting and removing the fouled Water-supply of a community. The matter to be dealt with may conveniently be classified as made up of three parts: (1) excreta, consisting of urine and faeces; (2) slop-water, or the discharge from sinks, basins, baths, &c., and the waste water of industrial processes; (3) surface; water due to rainfall. Before the use of underground conduits became general, the second and third constituents were commonly allowed to sink into the neighbouring ground, or to find their way by surface channels to a watercoursepor to the sea. ' The first constituent was conserved in middens or pits, either together with the d ust, ashes, kitchen waste and solid waste generally or separately, and was carried away from time' to time to be applied as manure to the land. In more modern times thelpits in which excrement was collected took the form of covered tanks called cesspools, and with this modification the primitive system, of conservancy, with occasional removal by carts, is still to be found in many towns. Even where the plan of removing excrement by sewers has been adopted, the kitchen waste, ashes and solid refuse is still treated by collecting it in pails or bins, -whose contents are removed by carts either daily or at longer intervals, the refuse frequently being burned in destructors (q.v.). It therefore forms no part of the nearly liquid sewage which the other constituents unite to form.

The first constituent is from an agricultural point of view the most valuable, and from a hygienic point of view the most dangerous, element of sewage. Even healthy excreta decompose, if kept for a short time after they are produced, and give rise to noxious gases; but a more serious danger proceeds from the fact that in certain cases of sickness these products are charged with specific germs of disease. Speedy removal or destruction of excrernental sewage is therefore imperative. It may be removed in an unmixed state, either in pails or tanks, or.(with the aid of pneumatic pressure) by pipes; or it may be defecated by mixture with dry earth or ashes; or, finally, it fmay be, conveyed away in sewers by gravitation, after the' addition of a relatively large volume of water. This last mode of disposal is termed the water-carriage system of sewerage. It is the plan now usually adopted in towns which have a sufficient water supply, and it is probably the mode which best meets the needs of any large community. The sewers which carry the diluted excreta serve also to take slop-water, and may or may not be used to remove the surface water due to rainfall. The water carriage system has the disadvantage that muchof the agricultural value of sewage is lost by its dilution, while the volume of foul matter to be disposed of is greatly increased.

I. Collection of Sewage.—House drains, that is to say,