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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 72.djvu/214

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POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY

yet France is a small country, not rich in comparison with us, and with a national debt six times as great as ours. But France has long been a civilized country, and Paris is proud to call herself "la ville Lumière." At the University of Berlin, Professor van't Hoff, the great physical chemist, was called from his native Holland to occupy a chair of research, in which he is totally freed from the obligation to lecture. Can we not consider the possibility of something of this sort in this country?

During the last few years several institutions have been founded for the sole purpose of the promotion of research, most notably the Carnegie Institution of Washington and the Rockefeller Institute of Medical Research in New York. These noble foundations may be expected to produce great results, but they do not relieve the universities from the duty of providing for research themselves, for research can be much more efficiently carried on in connection with teaching, and it is far more easy to obtain the persons who are to do the work in the universities than elsewhere. The scientist who does not have the inspiration of frequent contact with young and active minds of students is likely to become self-absorbed, one-sided and dried up. It is to be noticed that I have made this plea for research largely on the basis of its effect on teaching, and of inspiration of the students and of the community.

What then, my colleagues of university and college, is our duty? First of all, by our lives and precepts to teach our students that the prime object of the educated man is not to make a living. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? It is ours to hold up the sacred torch, and to radiate upon the community those ideals which it is strangely in danger of forgetting. It is for us to enrich the American soil, and cause it to bring forth imperishable fruit. And by word and deed to remind the young men with whom we come in contact that life is neither pleasure nor pain, but serious business.