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ized by me; and that it was not true, as published in the newspapers, that the students would suspect me of ratting, for the dinner being given to me as a literary man, and not as a politician. . . The sum of the matter is, that although the dinner has been frightened away for the present, one will be given me when the panic has subsided.
"The next annoyance was to find, that the Principal and some of his Professors pronounced my intention of lecturing to the students, independently of my inaugural speech, to be inconsistent with my Rectorial dignity. This point I gave up in consideration of the great kindness of my reception by the Professors. . . ."
"I delivered my inaugural speech yesterday with complete success; the enthusiasm was immense. I dined afterwards with the Professors, in the Faculty, with a party of forty strangers, invited on my account. . .
"I find the Rectorship will be no sinecure. I have sat four hours examining accounts, and hearing explanations from the Faculty, with Sir John Connel, the Dean of Faculty, my co-examiner and visitor, to whom the Professors are anxious to render their accounts. .. T. C."
In refererence to the installation ceremony, the following passage occurs in a private letter from a clergyman, then present:
"April 13th.... I had the exquisite gratification, yesterday, of witnessing the rapturous reception which Mr. Campbell met with in the College Hall-crowded to excess. His address was elegant, and poetical in a high degree, and delivered with great ease and dignity. At one part of it, however, he seemed to be rather beating about, and searched his pockets for some memoranda, which he did not find. This was unfortunate for his audience, as his speech was very original; and taken altogether, he did, in my apprehension, great honor to his situation.* J. F."
The "awkward predicament" here noticed, the Rector himself has told as follows:
"April 20th.-My Inaugural speecht had less the impress of thought; and was less copious than it would have been, if I had bestowed on it the time that was laid out on the Lectures. Yet, altogether, it went off very well. It was spoken from notes, and not previously written out, or got by heart,-more than as to the thoughts, and general cast of expression. As my evil genius for the time would have it, I left my notes at home; and
* Letter from the Rev. Joseph Finlayson to the Rev. H. Paul. + See APPENDIX to this volume.
when I found out my mistake, I was ready to drop down with apprehension. But, strange to tell, at that alarming moment, a look and a nod from the Rev. Dr. Mac G. on the bench beside me-the very man who had most violently opposed my election -recalled by some accidental association, the idea which should next follow! I got back the clue of association, and went through famously. T. C."
INAUGURATION DAY-LORD RECTORSHIP.
The Inauguration-day was followed by a round of social dinner parties, in which his fellow-citizens united their efforts to do him honor. At these entertainments Campbell generally found some of his old College friends-one of whom has sent me the following reminiscence:
"After the installation dinner, I went to dine by invitation with Campbell at his cousin, Mr. Gray's. The party consisted of Mr. Gray's family— brother and sisters; the Lord Rector, his lady, and three or four others, among whom were Finlayson, the poet's old friend.* The company was well assorted: anecdote followed anecdote, wit sparkled incessantly: our College adventures were rehearsed, two of which were repeated by Campbell. I had forgotten them. The day he dined with the Senatus Academ icus, it was the only second time he had been in the "salle à manger !" The first time, he appeared there as a culprit, and received a rebuke from the Principal, for breaking the windows of the College Church, the gable of which was close upon the wall of the College Garden. The practice was this:-The students, muffled up in their scarlet togas, picked up small stones from the gravel walk, and pitched them through the panes of glass; and, walking generally in groups, it was with difficulty that the delinquent could be detected. The second time he appeared in that Hall, was when he was entertained by the Principal and Professors, some of whom had been present at the giving and receiving of the reprimand! The contrast was sufficiently striking.
"Another circumstance had escaped my memory, namely:- When the class was dismissed, and we proceeded to the garden to amuse ourselves with running, leaping, wrestling, and-breaking the church windows! you always got the start of us,' said Campbell. How,' I inquired. Why,' said he, you remember there was an iron railing topt with sharp spikes ; and while we had to wait till old David came hobbling up with the key to open the gate, you seized one of the spikes with your right hand, threw your heels over, and alighted without injury on a bed of flowers.' This I had entirely forgotten, but it now comes fresh into my memory as a feat I had often done at the risk of my nether garments!—H. P."
Among the gratifying testimonies of respect which he receiv ed from all classes on his arrival in Glasgow, Campbell was agreeably surprised to find that, instead of opposition-of which
* See account of their copartnership in the Highlands, vol. I. p. 121. VOL. II.-9
he had heard so much-he was to have the confidence and support of his colleagues :
April 25th," he writes :-"The Professors have received me with great politeness,-the students with enthusiasm. The Principal did me the honor of preaching before me yesterday, as Lord Rector, in the Common Hall, where I attended morning and evening; and I am now making the circuit of hearing the Professors lecture in their different classes. I am to stop till the 1st of May, when the Principal has requested me to make the valedictory address, which he usually delivers to the students at breaking up of the Session. Meanwhile, I attend the Faculty Hall daily; and, with several of the Professors, go through an inspection of their books, and records; and take notes, in order to qualify myself for knowing how far the rights of the students. are respected, and the vast funds of the College properly applied. There is great openness in the conduct of the Professors, and a willingness to be examined on all points, that augurs well for them. They have even expressed their thanks to me for not running away, like the most of Rectors, leaving their duties unfulfilled, and the Professors to be calumniated by the suspicions of the students.-At present all is smoothness and good understanding. T. C."
"April 27th.-I have been working this morning since six o'clock at Rectorship business: writing letters, examining statutebooks about the rights of the members of the College, deeds of 'mortification,' &c. At ten, I read one of my lectures to some of the elder students, who breakfasted with me; for my friend Gray is most liberal in his invitations.
"The boys are delighted at the prospect of the lectures coming out in letters, in the New Monthly,' when I go back to London. I dare hardly show. myself in the garden, for fear of being cheered, and lest I should seem to covet popularity-but, having examined a class, I bolt out as quick as thought.
"The moment it was known that I had formed an intention to visit Staffa and Iona, after the first of May, a project was set on foot, and a body of the students requested my leave to attend me. I think this will do better than another plan which they had formed, that of inviting me to a public breakfast. I reminded them that I had the power of life and death over them, and that a mob-breakfast would be an infra dig.! The migration to the Isles will not be liable to the same objection. These tokens of affection, together with an invitation from the Provost
and Magistrates to the King's birth-day dinner, and the renewed proposition for a public dinner, are very flattering. The latter, however, I shall stave off till after the London University, that I may hear what Brougham says."
CLOSE OF THE SESSION-RETURN TO LONDON.
Meanwhile, ** and a few radicals are giving out that I have ratted! But the real Whigs laugh at the rumor, and are better pleased with me for accepting of their hospitality, without political reference.-The Principal, as I have said, has requested me to address the students, when I distribute the prizes on the 1st of May. T. C."
On the 21st of May, Campbell was again in London, and busily engaged in his two-fold duties of Rector and Editor. The first of his series of "Letters to the Students of Glasgow," was now sent to the press, and published for gratuitous distribution among his young constituents. These letters, on the epochs of literature, appeared, though not at regular intervals, in "The New Monthly": and confirmed the high impressions, which he had left behind him, of taste, eloquence, and classic erudition. His welcome from the late scene of his labors in Scotland, was very emphatically expressed by his friends in London, whose kindness and hospitality were redoubled on his return to Seymour-street. But the grand object on which he had set his mind, and to which, to a certain extent, he had pledged himself, was to investigate their rights, and secure certain advantages to the students of Glasgow, of which, it was alleged, they had been, hitherto, unjustly deprived. The Royal Commissioners, recently appointed for this purpose, were shortly to take under examination the College of Glasgow; and to them all questions were to be referred for investigation and redress. In this case the duty of the Lord Rector was to vindicate the claims of the students in person but owing to delays in the execution of the plan, his visit to Glasgow, as appears by the following note to his sister, was deferred :
"July 6th. I have had a conversation with Lord Aberdeen, First Commissioner for the Visitation of the Scotch Universities. His lordship tells me that it will be quite unnecessary that I should meet the commissioners in Scotland this month, as proposed, for the purpose of being heard in defence of the rights of the students, as to a question which is to be agitated before them. Lord A., as chief of the commission, has promised to hear me plead their cause in London, and not to come to any decision,
until I shall have been heard. It is uncertain when the commissioners may meet-not, I should think, before December; so that, unless I hear to the contrary, I shall expect to be in Scotland in October. T. C."
In the meantime, the labor of preparing for this meeting, with the duties of editor, was sufficient to engross all his attention. The Lord Rector's proposal of a gold and silver medal for annual competition among the students was thus announced:
July 17th, 1827.-A Gold Medal will be given for the best composition in English verse, that shall be executed by any student in the University of Glasgow, before the 20th of January, 1828. The invited competitors are, all students who may attend during the ensuing session. The subject and the length of the composition are left entirely to the choice of the candidates. Each candidate will affix two mottos to his production, but is not to announce his name, in any other way than in a sealed letter, accompanying the poem. Both are to be transmitted to the Principal of the College. A Silver Medal will be given for the second best composition, if executed by any student in the gowned classes. "T. CAMPBELL, Rector."
"Sept. 6th, 1827.
Upon these exertions, anxiety and ill health again supervened; but the prospect of revisiting Glasgow in October, cheered him forward in his arduous duties. After a month exclusively devoted to business, the feelings of friendship, and grateful recollections of his "late sojourn," are thus expressed to Mr. Gray :I take shame to myself that I do not volunteer writing to you, when I have not business to trouble you withal. If I were not the worst correspondent in the world, every good feeling should make me a punctual one with When I think of my late sojourn with you-of the pleasant days we spent together-of our fire-side group-and of the family friendship which I shared, I can remember no time of my existence that warms my heart more cordially. The excitement of public hospitality left an impression that is every day growing weaker in my memory; though it would be ungrateful in me to forget it; but your demonstrations of kindness, my dearest Gray, and those of my attached cousins, your sisters, are ever touchingly present to my thoughts. I shall see you again next winter. Give my right kind love to your family-I dip my pen in my heart, when I write these words-and believe me your most affectionate cousin, * T. C."
It was in the company of Mr. Gray, that he made various excursions among the cherished haunts of his childhood, and wrote the " Lines,” already quoted, "On revisiting Cathcart," Vol. I. p. 135.