Among the many changes which are now taken place I must mention one which has occasioned a small sensation. It has been decided that every Whitsuntide, the whole school is to be examined by the examiners of Oxford & Cambridge. This year being that of the Great Exhibition, has doubtless been selected to allow us to make some trifling addition to the many exhibitions which will probably take place. The following is the list of the subjects for Examination in the sixth.
Eurip. Heracleidae 1020 Lines
Demosthenes Philippic I
Horad. Ep. Omnes, & Ars Poetica
St Lukes Gospel (Gk) with Bible Hist.
Euclid Arith. & Algebra
Many paternals & sage school masters will be sure to exclaim “What a capital thing.” I wish they would bear in mind the old adage “That all work & no play makes Jack a dull boy.” We are already dull enough [crossed out text] and [eradicted text] us. What a shocking state of affairs.
J. M. Murray
On March 3d 1844. Judge Burtons occasional prize was proposed by Dr Williamson for the Sixth Form T.B. to compete for; and at the same time another & separate prize was given by Dr Williamson for the Q.S. or rather was proposed & which he was to give them himself. The Examination was originally to take place before the Whitsuntide Holidays, but on being spoke to by myself in behalf of the rest of those who were going to compete it was postponed till after Whitsuntide; for which extra time for preparation, I believe none was sorry. For the Reader will see over the page the subjects given for competition.
Homeri Ilias – 24 Books
Xenophontis Socratis Memorabilia – 4 books (the entire work)
Sophocles Philoctetes – 1457 lines
Virgilii Aeneid – 12 books
Virgilii Georg. – 4 books
Horatii Od. – 4 Books
Cic. de Officiis – 3 books
Algebra to Quad Equat.
Latin & Eng. Composition in Prose & Verse.
And as the Philoctetes, Xenoph. Mem & Cic. Off were entirely new work, to some, & nearly so to some others it altogether amounted to quite as much (or very close upon it) as the Q.S. usually shew up for their Election. Euclid was at first specified but was afterwards annulled – instead however. Some Grecian History was (as I understood) to be substituted.
F. Osborn was, I think the last winner of this prize, but I do not find it mentioned in this B. heretofore.
J. Preston Prin. Opp
April 23d 1844
Soon after Whitsuntide, Williamson made enquiries as to which of the Sixth were intended for the Church and finding that there were three viz Osborn, Andrewes and Smart; he directed that they should learn Hebrew, which they accordingly did.
This year (1839) some alteration was made with regard to the course of teaching in school. Webber (the 4th Master) was appointed to half the under school; and the Upper Elections in College went with the Town Boys to Mathematics in School. Mr Preston having declared that the task of teaching both Upper and Under Elections was more than he could stand: and another reason was perhaps that the shell did not sufficiently remunerate Mr Hodgson.
F Byron Prin. Opp.
On Friday Novr 2nd Williamson instituted a short repetition for the Townboys and K.S. in the sixth, to be said daily to one of the ushers in the under school (Smedley)
E U Sealy
This year Williamson instituted an examination on paper of both T.B. and K.S. to take place half yearly in the Museum, in the work done in the form the preceding half year; and according to the answers given, altering the respective places of each T.B.
J.T. Ludlow H.B.
Note. This Williamson has now increased, so that there are 3 at least if not 4 examinations yearly.
J. Preston Op.
This Christmas Williamson introduced some new regulations as regarded removes such as introducing Ciphering, and Grecian and Roman History into the examinations for the Upper Shell and Sixth, it is to be hoped that these changes in the routine of School subjects will have their due influences on the minds of the public in general and induce those who were formerly the supports of Westminster, again to retrieve its fallen fortunes; and the innovation is, that all below the shell should be *corrected at the several boarding-houses, of which the halls are given up from the hours of 2 till 5 for that purpose.
* Of course this refers to Verses
Doctor Goodenough made a rule that Bible exercise should be in future set on Friday Evening instead of Saturday morning as formerly.