An event happened this year, which I feel confident has never had a parallel here -viz. this Dr. Williamson having mentioned at the election of 1844 that the Electors were dissatisfied with the examinations of the Major Candidates, afterwards informed the two Head Third Election Q.S. that the Electors wished to see what the Q.S. were capable of doing in their 3d Election year, by themselves, & that therefore he wished them (Milman & Ingram) to comply with their request. To this effect he also added several subsequent arguments of equal weight: and the event was a challenge between them to contend for the priority then belonging to Milman by right. The Subject was the “Hecuba” there were three challenges, with certain limitations similar to those of Minor Candidates. Milman eventually kept his place. The reasons assigned above were, & with good reason, suspected to be not the genuine ones. Of the merit or demerit of the actual circumstance of the innovation; I will leave the Reader to form his own judgement hereafter from its effects. It is yet to be determined whether this is to be a regular thing, as a sort of “Return Match” to the usual Election of Minor Candidates at Whitsuntide. The Challenge was viva voce.
A Challenge was sent us this year from Eton, but was refused on account of the coming Election, since it interfered with the studies of the Major Candidates.
It is intended henceforward that no King Scholar should stay over the election, it is declared that interest is to have no effect, that it is to be decided by merit alone, and that every one is to have an equal chance whether that will be the case is to be seen hereafter.
That this would be the most fair and equitable way, I think there is no room for doubting but I can safely answer that if ever such a rule was made (and there seems to be the less reason for thinking so) it has been to my certain knowledge very often grossly violated.
Added by J. Preston 1845