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Journal of the Transactions of
The  Victoria  Institute
(Selected Articles) -

(Journal of 1866)

THE Council of the Victoria Institute having deemed it advisable to republish, in the first number of its Journal of Transactions, the Pamphlet which I ventured to issue in September, 1865 (in the first instance entirely upon my own responsibility), with the title "Scientia Scientiarum : being some account of the Origin and Objects of the Victoria Institute, or Philosophical Society of Great Britain, by a Member;" but which was afterwards circulated by order of the Provisional Committee, and is referred to with commendation both in the Vice-President's Inaugural Address and in the President's Speech at the Inaugural Festival, on 24th May, 1866;--it is now here reprinted (with the Preface and Postscript which were added to it upon the publication of the third thousand), as being thus connected with the history of the Society's foundation.

The original Circular of 24th May, 1865, in which I roughly sketched the first idea of the Victoria Institute, and which is referred to in Scientia Scientiarum (p. 5), and in the Report of the Provisional Committee and Council (p. 40), will be found on p. 33; but the Circular of July, 1865 (No. 4), also referred to at the same places, has not been here reproduced, because it contained the names of some gentlemen who, though they had at first generally approved of the formation of the Society, did not afterwards make formal application to be admitted as Members or Associates, when its objects had been agreed upon and made public. Circular No. 4 was originally issued by itself, to make these objects known; and it was also appended to the first two editions of the Scientia Scientiarum; but it was omitted from the third edition, published in February last, after the First List of the Foundation Members and Associates had been printed--it being considered that the names of gentlemen who had known of the formation of the Society for about nine months, and had not in that time regularly joined it, should no longer appear as if connected with its foundation, when they had not qualified to be enrolled in the Foundation List of its Members and Associates.

The Council being also aware that some of the Members who have joined the Society, even after two hundred names had been enrolled, had only recently heard of its existence and understood what its objects were; and, knowing that many persons, both in the United Kingdom and the Colonies, cannot probably be made aware of its establishment for several months to come; they, therefore, recommended to the first general meeting, that the Foundation Lists should be kept open till 31st December, 1866, in order that as large a number as possible might have the opportunity of sharing with them in the honour of being Foundation Members and Associates of the Victoria Institute.

I would here, also, beg leave to call especial attention to the Sixth Recommendation of the Committee's Report (p. 43), and to what I have said in the Preface to Scientia Scientiarum (pp. 3, 4), relating to the Sixth and Seventh Objects of the Society. And I venture confidently to entertain the hope that, through Christian munificence and liberality, the Seventh Object will not long be left unrealized, when once the great importance of the work which the Society aims at accomplishing is fully appreciated.

J. REDDIE, Hon. Sec.

June, 1866.

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