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Seanad Éireann debate -
Wednesday, 15 May 1940

Vol. 24 No. 14

Institute for Advanced Studies Bill, 1939—Second Stage.

Question proposed: "That the Bill be now read a Second Time."

I do not know how much information will be required by members of the Seanad regarding this Bill. I expect that every member has read it and that the majority has followed the discussions on it in Dáil Eireann. The purpose of the Bill is made clear from the short title: it is to establish here in Dublin an institute for the promotion of advanced studies and research. One of the immediate reasons for founding an institute of this kind is the obvious need to deal with a very considerable body of manuscript material which is available and which can be worked through only if it is systematically attacked. The manuscripts are Celtic manuscripts dealing particularly with classical and early modern Irish.

The idea of dealing systematically with that suggested another idea. As a result of the university course in Celtic studies, there are a number of students from time to time who show special aptitude and who have special ability for this type of work. Perhaps, having got a travelling studentship in the National University, they have found that—in order to obtain a livelihood— they have had to abandon studies of this sort and go into the Civil Service or the professions. In this way, or in some similar way, they are lost to Celtic scholarship. It seems to me that students cannot, after a time, be attracted by a system of temporary scholarships and studentships. What is really needed is that the particularly brilliant student with the makings of a scholar in him should, when he is available, be utilised under skilled direction for the publication of this manuscript material, by giving him conditions which will approximate to those of the Civil Service. In this way he can look forward to earning his livelihood—or, at least, to being supported —while he is doing that particular work. If that is to be done properly, we must be careful that only the really first-class scholars be kept on. There must be a shorter period, during which they will be engaged only in a temporary capacity, and only those will be retained who, under the skilled direction of scholars, would be able to fit themselves to take those scholars' places when they have passed away, and who would be the material from which the university would draw its professors. It seems to me that it is possible to kill two birds with the one stone—to provide for future scholarship and also to make this mass of material available—by having some such school as it is proposed to establish within the institute.

I do not see how this can be done in any other way. It has been suggested that the universities might do it, but I do not think they are equipped to carry out this particular kind of work. One might as well, in other countries, ask the universities to deal with astronomical research. There are observatories and universities side by side; the observatories are independent in dealing with astronomical research. This is an old idea, not a modern one. In connection with botany, too, botanical gardens sometimes have been maintained in close association, as part of the work of a university, and sometimes independently of it. You have had the Geological Survey. In a sense it is work for the university, but in order to carry on the continued and systematic work that is necessary for the fulfilment of the fundamental purposes of geological survey, a certain independent institution has had to be established. The same is true of the Ordnance Survey. These are old institutions with a modern or a scientific character, if you wish to regard them in that way. They have been governed and operated sometimes in very close connection with the universities, and sometimes outside them.

In modern times on account of the great specialisation of knowledge the need for institutes of this sort has been felt more and more. Without going into the question of institutes in general it seems to us at any rate that, in the case of Celtic Studies, there was very good reason for establishing some independent autonomous body which would be charged with the task of editing, publishing and making available for scholars the large mass of material which has accumulated. They would also be charged with the task of training future scholars and giving to advanced students, who would be interested, lectures on this subject. We felt that the need for that work would justify the foundation of some autonomous body. The moment you consider how it would be organised you very quickly come to see that a body of that sort would require to have the greatest possible amount of autonomy. If it were possible to found an institute of that sort by private endowment, it would be the better way to do it. It would certainly cast no burden on the State as a whole, but in our conditions that was not possible, and if the work has to be done it is clear that it will have to be undertaken by the State.

We have undertaken work of a similar character already. For instance, the Manuscripts Commission was set up to deal with historical manuscripts. Scholars of the university have, of course, been engaged on that work, but its general direction and control have been outside the university system proper. A good deal of the work has been done by university professors and scholars who have either been associated with the university, or found their way, apart from the universities, into such bodies as the Royal Irish Academy. We have also had to deal with the body of folklore which, it was obvious, we should set about collecting as quickly as possible while it was still in a fairly pure form. All that had to be undertaken outside the universities. It may be said that it could have been done by the universities. It could, of course, if you wished to expand a university and give it a special branch, but if you want to have freedom of operation, to have the work carried out without any inconvenience, to have immediate control of that sort, it was necessary to have it carried out by an independent body.

Only recently a small group came to see me about the names of townlands in Ireland, and the desirability of dealing with these Irish townland names. There are 50,000 or 60,000 of such names. One estimate I got was 50,000, but some others thought that the number was even larger, and I did not have the number checked up. There is a good deal of matter to be found, for example, in the O'Donovan Letters in the Ordnance Survey Office. Certain private individuals who were interested in the matter had worked in particular areas with which they were acquainted.

All that mass of material is available, and the question is whether it should be left in that uncollated state. If you want to get that work done, if the necessary funds are available, the best way to set about it would be to get a small group who are competent to deal with it, give them a certain grant, and say: "There is a piece of work, go and do it." You will have to provide that the work will be well done, that it will be done in a reasonable time so that there can be no suggestion of delay over it or no suggestion that those who are receiving a salary or an allowance from the Government for doing it are unduly dilatory over the work.

The task here, in the case of Celtic studies, will be to get the most suitable scholars of eminence who will be capable of giving the necessary direction, and who will be sufficiently energetic to see that the work will be done swiftly and well—done as well as it can be done without spending undue time over it, because, obviously, the first edition of a book has frequently to be issued with the knowledge that, on revision, errors will be found and corrections will have to be made. In the case of Celtic studies we are fortunate in having at least two men who are pre-eminent and who rank as the foremost scholars of the day in practically all branches of the Irish language. It seems to me that it would be a pity not to avail of their services whilst they are still sufficiently vigorous to do this work. They can give the necessary direction. You can also have available younger people who can appeal to them as they would to books of reference. You can get the work started in that way, and these younger persons, who would be carrying out the work under the direction of the senior professors, would be prepared to take their place afterwards if necessary. Professors are not immortal. The number of years they are likely to live is limited. We think we ought to take time by the forelock and utilise these men to get this work, which is of supreme national importance, carried out. It is not merely a matter of making available the treasures of the past to the general body. This work is going to enrich the modern language and to make its literature far more satisfying than it would otherwise be.

Naturally there is temptation to say: "Very well, you have made a case for a school of Celtic studies. You will have general agreement on that from the national point of view, but why do you not stop there? Is that not enough? Go ahead with the School of Celtic Studies, and you will get every support." That suggestion was made in the Dáil by one Deputy. The Opposition seemed to be somewhat divided in their views on the Bill. Some supported the Bill completely; some said they would support it very wholeheartedly if it were confined to the School of Celtic Studies alone. But I think it would be a pity to leave it at that. I think it desirable that we should play our part in the world in the advance of science generally. Celtic studies will appeal, no doubt, to a large number of students and scholars in all countries of the world. I hope that school when it is started will be the great centre of Celtic studies in the world. It will be interested in Old, Middle and Modern Irish, and I hope it will be also interested in the sister Celtic languages—Welsh, Scotch, Manx, Cornish, Breton, and so on. I hope that, from the world point of view, this school will become the great centre of Celtic learning, that we will have amongst the scholars not merely those who have particularly specialised in Irish, but those who have also specialised in some other languages. I have made inquiries, but I do not know at the moment whether it would be possible to get a senior professor of eminence apart from those who are available here for the various branches, but if it were possible—I think it should be possible in the first years of the school —we should like to get such a professor from abroad.

As I have said, it would be a pity if we kept to Irish alone, because it is not merely from the purely—shall I call it—utilitarian, national point of view, but from the wider point of view of the credit of the nation in the world that I would like to see this thing widened beyond the School of Celtic Studies. Now, looking around and trying to get a balance, if such an institute is to be established, one would naturally turn from what you might call the more narrowly humanistic side of language, to which the Celtic studies belong, to the scientific side, and when you think of the scientific side, perhaps the first suggestion that would come to your mind would be that we should take our part in the world in trying to advance physical research. Experimental physics would appear to be immediately the more practical and useful, but when you consider that matter you will see that, for a variety of reasons, this country has not the particular advantages which would enable it to engage in that branch to the extent to which it would be necessary for it to engage if it were going to get anything like world pre-eminence in any particular branch. Experimental science requires very expensive equipment, and it also requires, as a rule, a very large body of workers in order to be able to forge beyond the frontiers which have been reached at the moment. In fact, as I said in the Dáil, the position in regard to research in experimental physics has been such that even the great nations are themselves beginning to specialise now, and that work which, say, a couple of decades ago, would have been undertaken in Great Britain, for instance, without any hesitation, has been abandoned and left to the United States, whereas they are keeping on the particular branches in which they have made most advances at the moment and for which they are already pretty well equipped.

Now, we could not hope to enter into competition with wealthy nations such as the United States and Great Britain in the matter of experimental research. Therefore, you should ask yourself, in what other direction can you go? We have had a great name in this country, and have established a world reputation in medicine, for instance. You may ask yourself: Why not try to advance in the line of medical research? From a variety of points of view it would be desirable to do so, but already a certain advance has been made in that direction in another way, and I think that we should allow that to proceed until we can see what they can do with it. Accordingly, when you look around and survey the whole field, you will be brought back very quickly either to pure mathematics or mathematical physics, if you are thinking of the sciences generally, and, therefore, with the desire of keeping as nearly as possible to the practical side of mathematics, you will be led rather to mathematical or theoretical physics than to pure mathematics. In both these sciences this country had a very great reputation in the 19th century— let us say, in the middle half, or from the first quarter to the third quarter of the 19th century. Now, that tradition has not died out completely, and one of the reasons, apart from the general reasons I have given as to why I thought it would be advisable to balance Celtic studies in the institute by a school of theoretical physics rather than any other, was this: that it happened that there were available for the school, or seemed to be available, when this Bill was introduced, three men of outstanding ability and men with a world-wide reputation.

I have not the slightest doubt that if the school had been started and if the services of these three men were available, almost from the beginning the presence of these men would have attracted students from a number of countries. The war, however, and another matter have affected that position somewhat. I have not mentioned the names of these three men, although I think that, by now, they are known to those who are interested in the matter, but one of them has received another appointment since then, which would remove him from being what I had hoped he would be, and that is, one of the original professors of the school of theoretical physics. Fortunately, however, he is in our midst and, quite possibly, while doing his own research work, he would also be able to work in close co-operation with the school, but he is lost at the moment to us as one of the senior professors. There was a second man, who expressed his willingness to come here. He had been here already and he was quite prepared to come here again. He also was a man who had established his name as one of the foremost mathematical physicists of our time. I do not despair of getting his services yet. At the moment, it is not possible for him to come here—a certain delicacy prevents him coming under the present circumstances—but I hope that, when the school has been established for a short time, the conditions will be so changed that we shall have his services.

Well, then, of the three, we have one, who was described to me privately by one of the men I have mentioned as being probably the greatest of living mathematical physicists. It is quite true that we have only one instead of three but I hope that we shall have before long two and a half, if I might put it that way, instead of three, and if the salary that is paid is sufficient it will be possible to attract other people of eminence of that type, if we want to do so. I want to make it quite clear, however, that I and my colleagues, in being prepared to establish this institute, would not dream of doing so unless it was clearly understood that only men of international reputation would be appointed as senior professors. With them would be associated assistants—young men who would be doing research work—and, in the case of Celtic studies, besides the senior professors, there would be the assistants that I have indicated already.

I think I have given you the reason why it was desirable to have, in addition to the school of Celtic studies, another school. It will indicate clearly that the institute is intended to have in it more than one school, and the Bill is so framed that, if it becomes law, under the law it will be possible at any time, by a fairly simple procedure, to establish other schools according as they may be required. Some people have suggested that there might be a school here of economic research. No doubt, that would be very interesting and valuable. For instance, if you had, as was suggested here, a central bank, with a special research department, you might ask yourself whether, in accordance with the Report of the Banking Commission, if you had established an institution such as a central bank, it would not be better to have the research and the practical study of economics, and whether you might not have that associated more with the central bank, for instance, than to have it as a part of the institute.

Are we going to have a central bank?

We can leave that as a hypothetical question at the moment. "If we had," I said. But if we decided that it was good from a national point of view to have it associated with this institute, the framework is such that you can have it, and if, for instance, at any time it was thought desirable to change over from, let us say, the present organisation and control of the medical research, if you wanted to bring it within the framework of the institute, the framework is there. I am not suggesting that it would be wise to do that. I am only saying that the framework is there, and at any time, under the framework of the Bill, it would be quite possible to establish further schools. Again, I do not think they ought to be established unless it is quite clear that you are going to have in them either something of international importance or something of extremely great national importance.

Having told you of the schools, you might ask, why not have them independent bodies altogether and, say, have the School of Celtic Studies as a separate institute, and have the School of Theoretical Physics a separate institute? I think it is advisable to have the one name there as a sort of focus, so that all the various rays of credit, the good name that we get, may be focussed into a single institute. If, for instance, the School of Theoretical Physics should become world-famous, then it will reflect its glory upon the institute. If, on the other hand, the School of Celtic Studies becomes, as I hope it will, world-famous, it also will be able to concentrate any credit it may get on to the one institute, so that the name of the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies would become more and more widely known throughout the world. It is also useful to have it coordinated from another point of view: you can save administrative expenses. I hope that this institute will be organised in such a way that the administrative expenses will be the smallest possible. You do not want to have a large staff in connection with it. I hope that all the people associated with the schools will be, in the main, workers in the schools, engaged in their own particular work for advancing knowledge. By having one central institute, and one central administrative body which can look after the material details such as the buildings, the necessary accounting, payment of officers and professors, and so on, all the work can be easily done from one central office. It is provided that there would be one special officer, the registrar bursar, who would be the executive officer. Indeed, from a certain point of view, perhaps the wider the functions of the administrative officer of the schools the better. The day might come when there would be such a number of schools that he would not be able to deal with all the work. In that case he would have to be supported by some assistants, but, certainly, for two or three or four schools, if they are at all of the type that I have envisaged them as being, a very small office staff would be capable of doing all the administrative work that would have to be done. For that reason it is better to have only one institute and to have these other bodies as central schools in it. You have got to be careful that in governing the institute, as a whole, looking after its details as a whole, you do not confound the governing body of that institute with the governing bodies of the schools. I think that is a mistake made by some of the Gaelic League critics. In order that the schools may be able to do their own work in the best way, you must try to give them the greatest amount of liberty and autonomy that is possible. I think that is provided in the Bill, so that the School of Celtic Studies, by its own governing board, will be able to regulate its own affairs, and that it will not be interfered with by the council as regards its own particular type of work.

Is it right that the one body that will be the corporate body of the institute will be the council? In order to understand the composition of the council we will have to go back for a moment to the composition of the governing board of the schools. The intention is that the governing board of a school should consist, in the first instance, of the senior professors of the schools. They will automatically, ex officio, become members of the governing board of the school. Side by side with them you will have an equal number of appointed members. The natural thing would be to appoint, say, in the case of the governing board of the School of Celtic Studies, people who were interested in Celtic studies, those who would know the particular type of work that had to be done by the school. Therefore you would have, side by side with the professors, a number of people similarly interested in the advancement of Celtic studies. You would have as many appointed members as professors, with a chairman who would also be an appointed member. That gives a majority of one, the chairman, over the professors, so that it could not be said that the professors were managing things just to suit themselves. There will be people associated with the professors who will be interested in the subject, interested in the welfare of the school, and in regard to whom it will not be suggested that they have any particular personal interest in the professors themselves. Each school will be governed in that form.

We come then to the composition of the central corporate body, the council. The intention there is that from the governing board of each school two will be selected to be members of the council. It is provided that one at least must be an appointed member. In other words, again, it cannot be said that the professors are managing this whole thing solely in their own interest. Therefore, at the centre, for general administration of the institute, you will have two representatives from each school, one of whom must be an appointed member. You will also have a chairman who would be appointed and, in addition, ex officio members, namely the President of University College, Dublin, the Provost of Trinity College, Dublin, and the President of the Royal Irish Academy. A point was raised in the Dáil as to why the President of University College, Dublin, was selected, why was it not, for example, left by some system of rotation or otherwise, to the different colleges in the National University to select a representative? For this sort of work, and for much the same reason as we decided that it should be called the Dublin Institute, rather than the Irish Institute, I think that it is of special advantage that the members of the council should live in the one locality as far as possible and that they should be readily available for meetings, and also from the point of view of expense, and so on. I have no doubt, at any rate, that it is preferable that it should be so. There was some objection from some of the colleges, but I think that the objection that was made was not pursued very much. I have not heard from anybody that there has been any real objection on that score. I suppose it would be almost dangerous to call a college the senior college in regard to a federal university, but it is the largest college anyhow. The largest college will have representation, and that representation will enable any co-ordination to be made that it is necessary to make with the universities.

I would like to say, of course, that there is no sense in the suggestion that there is in this any taking away of anything from the universities. The universities can continue their research as before. It is simply a recognition of the fact that they are not organised to do work of the special kind which it is contemplated that these schools should do, and if the universities were asked to do this work, a different type of organisation would have to be set up. In fact, it would be very difficult within the present scheme to organise it thoroughly. It is wrong to suggest that there is any taking away of any functions from the universities. They are free to go on as before. As a matter of fact, research is of such a kind that, as the frontier advances, it becomes longer, if I may put it that way, and there are more points of attack. The more you advance research, the more work there is for further research.

Instead of taking anything away from the universities, facilities and helps of various kinds will be given them. Take, for example, the question of theoretical physics alone. One of the great difficulties facing anybody who is engaged in research in that science is the difficulty of being made aware of the work being done all over the world at present and of knowing the particular lines on which further advance is likely to be made. One of the things that can be done by this scheme will be the provision of a bureau of information, a source of ready information, for those who are engaged in research, so that they may know in what special directions advance has been made and in what directions further advance is most likely. I know nothing which would so stimulate research on the part of those capable of conducting research as having here, in the capital of Ireland, a ready source of information as to the directions in which advances are most likely to be made and in what directions it would be most profitable to pursue exploration. I think it is altogether wide of the mark to suggest that something is to be taken away from the universities, or that the universities will be injured in any way.

Some people have got the idea that because this body is for advanced studies, it would somehow be suggested that the university professors cannot engage in advanced work; in other words, that there would be some lessening of their prestige. Again, that is a foolish notion, and anybody who is acquainted with the various bodies conducting special research all over the world would never suggest that any such thing was likely to happen. I said in the Dáil that there were institutes of this sort in practically every country in the world, many of them in the same cities as those in which old universities were founded. I put some members of the staff to the trouble of trying to get a list of such institutes and I find that there is an index—I think it is a French publication—from which I have been given very extensive notes on the various institutes. There are over 1,000 such institutes recorded which are mainly devoted to science alone, apart altogether from the study of languages, etc., and if anybody is interested he can find in various countries institutes of this type which have gone on side by side with universities and, so far as I know, there has been no jealousy between them and the universities, so that it will be realised that this is nothing new or nothing extraordinary.

In fact, the only thing extraordinary about this Bill is the time at which I happen to be bringing it in. It was introduced originally before the war and some people might say that we should leave it over until after the war. My only answer is that it was prepared before the war and that we shall have to continue life and, I hope, progress, even while the war is on. We may not be able to move ahead as quickly once the Bill is through and get our institute going and get its name recognised as well throughout the world as in other times, but I think it would be a mistake to stop now, having gone so far, even though some people might think that when we have other cares, it was an extraordinary time to pursue this idea. This has been in contemplation, as I have said, for two or three years. It was introduced last July, and even if we look at it merely from the point of view of a gesture, if you like, to indicate that there is a better way than war for advancing the welfare of mankind, it may not be altogether inappropriate.

The Bill gives the functions of the schools in detail, as well as the organisation of the schools and the method of appointment of senior professors. They are to be appointed by the President on the advice of the Government. In other words, the Government has the fundamental responsibility for making the appointments. The point was raised as to whether there was not some other way of doing it, but I think that, when we have to provide public moneys for their appointment, we ought to have the responsibility of seeing that the fundamental ideas which made it worth while to found such an institute, of having only people of international reputation appointed as senior professors, are carried out. That responsibility will have to lie on somebody, and it is just as well that it should lie upon people who have to face public criticism on the matter, and who, if there is any suggestion of appointing second-rate people, or anything of that sort, can be criticised for it.

Is it intended, when a university professor is appointed to the institute, that he should be removed from the university and function entirely in the institute, or that he should function in both?

The intention is that the position of senior professor should be full-time. I think it would be undesirable that it should be otherwise. Most of the institutes where this matter has been tested out have come to the conclusion that it is better to have the position a whole-time position. The idea is that the senior professors should be whole-time professors and, in fact, the whole idea of the institute is to make it possible for them to spend all their time on the particular work they had in hand which, in the case of Celtic studies, will be the preparation and editing of this mass of material and the training of advanced students in particular lines of research. The other duties of the professors, which will be set out in the establishment orders will be to give lectures from time to time. It is intended that they should, from time to time give a short course of public lectures in whatever branch they are interested in in Trinity College and in the colleges of the National University alternately. That, of course, will have to be arranged by agreement with the colleges themselves, but I cannot conceive of any objection being raised by either of the colleges to having men of eminence delivering a lecture, or a short course of lectures, on some matter dealing with the advancement of knowledge on which he is a recognised authority.

The removal of the professors, naturally, will lie with the appointing bodies, and the appointment of assistants, whether temporary professors or assistant professors—junior professors, as they might be called— will be left in the hands of the governing body. The intention is that grants should be made available under the following heads:—Firstly, for administration which will be directly administered by the council and, then, for each of the schools. The actual payment will be made through the institute, but the appointments would be made by the governing bodies of the schools. Of course, they would have to keep within their budget, and the appointments would have to be agreed on, approved of or accepted by the Minister for Education for the time being. I do not think it is necessary for me to keep you very much longer by going further into the matter at this stage.

Might I ask a question?

Might I ask why it is that the Royal Irish Academy has not been utilised for this purpose?

The Royal Irish Academy for the most part is a forum which gives an opportunity to scholars to come in and read papers and to make their own particular researches through the reading of the papers known to others. I know that it has, from time to time, taken up other functions, but these functions are of a relatively minor character, and the men who are members of the Academy are for the most part men who are not able to give their whole time to it.

Is it not a fact that O'Donovan, O'Curry and Whitley-Stokes, and again even Hamilton, the great authority on theoretical physics, were all products of the Royal Irish Academy?

They were not products of the Academy.

They were closely associated with it.

And no doubt the professors in this institute will, in all probability, be members of the Royal Irish Academy, and will use it for special purposes, attending its meetings and speaking there. I think the Royal Irish Academy has had a certain central idea. Perhaps I do not know as much about it as it would be advisable I should know, but I have always regraded it as a forum where a collection of individuals utilised its meetings to publish their own particular researches and make them available to others. If you take the example of Hamilton, I think he was appointed Andrews professor of astronomy at Trinity College, and that took him to Dunsink. Whether the title of Astronomer Royal was a State title or a title of Trinity College, I am not quite sure. At any rate, his great work was done from Dunsink, and I might mention, as a matter of historical interest, that it was the fact that Dunsink seemed to be available at one time for the State that set me thinking about this whole subject, because it seemed a pity that where such a wonderful work had been done in a locale that was associated with the greatest of Irish scientists—and I think I am not exaggerating in the slightest in calling him one of the greatest scientists in the world—that it was done in Dunsink, and that every field there has been associated with him, and the places where he walked, and so on. Not only did he give his lectures on quaternions as Andrews professor of astronomy in Trinity College, but he also communicated the results to the Royal Irish Academy, and made them available through the publications of that body.

I have no doubt that if I sat down to do it, I could try to devise some scheme which would enable work of this sort to be carried out within the Academy.

The School of Ancient Irish Learning was wound up after the National University was founded, largely because it was felt that some of the work that it was doing could be done better through that institution, and portion of the work was handed over to the Royal Irish Academy. It would, I suppose, be possible, just as it would be possible to incorporate this idea in Trinity College, or in the National University, to get this work done in the National University. It seemed to me that, by having an institute of the sort contemplated in the Bill it would be an ad hoc institution set up to do a particular type of work, and it would not in any way interfere with the work proper of the Academy or the work proper of the universities or colleges, and that it would be better that the particular work we have in mind should be done in this way. In my opinion, it is probably less expensive to do it in this way than it would be to do it in the universities, because if you were going to establish it in one university college in this city, you would have to establish it in the other. I think there is a very fair balance between the two schools. Celtic studies would appear to be associated very largely with the National University, whereas Hamilton and the great school of theoretical physicists were more associated with Trinity College and the University of Dublin, so that you have a balance between the two university colleges, Trinity College and University College, here in this city.

I would like to say this, that one of the things that pleased me in looking through some of the letters and other documents, which were left by Hamilton, as I had to in connection with this Bill, was his great love for his country. I hope that if we do get, as I am hoping, one house, say for administration, and one house, near it, for the school of Celtic studies and another house for Theoretical Physics, that one of them anyhow, will be called the Hamilton House and I hope that the other one will get some other name like that of the patriot O'Curry or O'Donovan. I think these are the names which would inspire those who would be working in those institutes with the spirit of these men. There is one other thing. In a recent biography of Hamilton by an American, the writer stressed his love for his country and pointed out that one of the things he was working for and to which he devoted his magnificent genius, was to raise the reputation of this country in the world. Those who have been associated with the earlier work will be, I hope, the models of the new professors —they will mean to them not merely love for knowledge and science but love for the country as well. I hope that in passing this Bill, you will approach it in that spirit and I hope those who may work in this institution, as a result of the facilities you will make available, will at all times be animated by these high ideals of human culture and patriotism.

It is well to have a matter of this kind about which one can be entirely and completely calm, although it seems to me that one of the remarks made by the Taoiseach before he sat down almost brought my friend Senator Alton to his feet to explain that with regard to the roots of Celtic scholarship one might easily go to seek for some of them in Trinity College.

That is true.

As a matter of fact, the last Provost of Trinity College— who, happily, is still alive—was himself a very distinguished scholar in that particular field. If all we had to do were to vie with one another as between the universities in scholarship, we would be a very happy people indeed. I think the Taoiseach is rather under a misapprehension when he thinks that the establishing of a particular chair or branch of study in the National University would immediately bring everybody in Trinity College to his feet to seek the establishing of a similar chair. In my opinon, that particular type of rivalry is not in existence now, and his proposal for higher learning should really be discussed, and a conclusion reached, without taking into consideration the jealousies supposed to exist between the two universities or between the university colleges.

The Taoiseach began by putting forward the necessity for a special piece of machinery to deal with Celtic studies. It would appear that, having reached that conclusion, he then went on to find an appendant and found theoretical physics. Having found this, he brings in a Bill which goes much wider than the establishing of either or both of those schools. I think he will agree with me that the Bill itself, in its essence, is not one for the furthering of Celtic studies or the establishing of a school of theoretical physics. The principle of the Bill is much more important than that, and may prove ultimately to be much more expensive. In the Dáil the Bill was described by the Taoiseach as a "modest beginning". In the institute there are going to be a number of schools under Government control and completely independent of the universities. The intention, therefore, is very wide and far outside Celtic or Irish studies, or theoretical physics.

This Bill is one in which we are asked to provide for the building up of a completely new educational structure or superstructure, which may be extended, and which may, in the end, become very large and expensive and have repercussions upon our general education and, more particularly, on the status of our universities, which at the moment it is difficult to foresee. I mentioned the word "expensive". Let me say at once that I do not believe we are too poor to spend money on higher learning. I am using the words "higher learning" in the sense of research, as the Taoiseach used them. We are a very small and, on the whole —although we do not like to say it ourselves—a rather insignificant nation. We can hope to excel only in certain directions. We cannot excel in armaments, and I do not think we can excel in mass production in industry.

We can in agriculture.

We have actually excelled in certain branches of agriculture, and we can perhaps excel in craftsmanship as distinct from mass production. There is a good case for saying—as the Taoiseach has said— that there are branches of learning for which we have a high reputation and in which we can continue to excel. I have no objection to spending a reasonable amount of money on these particular branches of learning. The question naturally arises as to how we are going to set about that. The proposal here is to ignore the machinery which we have, and to set up new machinery with new overhead costs, new buildings, new costs for professors, and new administrative posts for civil servants, with a further extension of Government control and Government costs. To my mind that is very debatable. This is not a Bill for the furtherance of industrial research. As the Taoiseach quite properly says, it is not one for research which would require expensive machinery. There are very many institutes, and the Taoiseach quoted a French list which gives a thousand institutes. If that list is examined, I think it will be found that very, very few of them are institutes which exist for the purpose of promoting what is called pure knowledge as distinct from applied knowledge of various kinds.

In this and in other countries there are various activities which ought to be undertaken by the State. There is, for example, the geological survey. When the last Government were in office I used to hear from friends in the National University that the geological survey which was done quite well by the British was being neglected. I think it is true to say that in this, as in many other directions, the present Government have followed in the footsteps of the last Government, in continuing to neglect it. Astronomical research is a matter for the Government, from various points of view. I understand from experts that if you want to know where the north is—indeed, it was thought you could find it by taking a train from Amiens Street—the compass is not very valuable, as various mathematical adjustments have to be made, based upon a magnetic survey. I hope that no one will ask me what a magnetic survey is, as I do not know, but I understand from people whose business it is that the last magnetic survey was made by the British Government in 1915, and that since then there has been no magnetic survey here. That is not a matter of pure research, but one for the Government. The study of meteorology has been neglected until recently. It is being undertaken now owing to the development of the aviation services, and it is being done very well.

I think no one would advocate that these things should be done in the universities. In his various speeches the Taoiseach, in the other House, seemed to have a very strange view of the functions of the universities with regard to higher learning. Even to-day he explained that we have in Dublin a number of people of international repute in Celtic studies—there is no doubt about that—and that he proposes to place these on a full time basis in the institute. Surely, if we take from University College, Dublin, a man who is certainly of international repute in early and mediaeval Irish, the most important scholar alive at the present time, and put him somewhere else on full time, there can be no doubt that something has been done to reduce the status of University College, Dublin. If you apply the same thing to Trinity College or to any other college in the country, the same conclusion follows. It may be a good thing to do, but—whether it is a good thing or not—there can be no doubt that, if a person of international repute is taken from a particular university and put somewhere else, that university institution has lost something.

In the other House the Taoiseach appeared to think that a university is a place where there is fuss and stress and strain—something like a railway station on the morning of an excursion. That is not correct. In the universities there are very calm people, and a good deal of research is possible, in spite of the fact that students have long courses, and that a good deal of teaching has to be done in professional schools. I hope that the Taoiseach is not following out a particular idea which he propounded some years ago, if my memory serves me aright, that universities should become professional schools. I think that would be a complete change in their very nature. There is also an idea that research is something that cannot be done when there are human contacts and when people have to lecture. The very contrary has been the experience of some of the best scholars the world has known. There is one particular example of a chemist in Germany whose name escapes me at the moment, a very remarkable man who, after spending two years in an institute, said he could not continue research without contact with his students. He went back to his university. It seems rather far-fetched, therefore, to say that there should be no contact with ordinary students, apart from students of a very advanced type. Nor is it necessary that a professor should be overburdened with classes and examinations. There is nothing to prevent a university college here from allowing a suitable person almost complete liberty to carry out research. The Taoiseach himself will be aware of the fact that quite recently a particular lectureship was set up in University College, Dublin, to which no examining duties and very little teaching duties are attached, for a person who is peculiarly fitted for a special type of study and who has done a considerable amount of it. I think the Taoiseach is entirely wrong in thinking that we can set up this type of institution at the top of our educational system, and leave all the other institutions as they are. Institutes of this character are generally established for specialised industrial or medical research. One such was established by a big English firm which deals in medicine, and which devotes its profits to research work in medicine.

The proposal here, however, is to establish an institute as a Government Department. The professors are to be appointed by the Minister and the school is to have a registrar and staff. I doubt very much if that is going to work and I doubt very much that the registrar in this particular business is going to have a very happy time. I have a great admiration for civil servants. I met them—the higher civil servants, for the first time in 1922—and I have very pleasant recollections of them, their capacity and their devotion to duty, but one of their firmest convictions is that there is nothing they cannot do. Your ordinary civil servant of a certain grade is firmly convinced that if you give it to him he can do it. Of course he can do it. He can do it by the Civil Service method, but the Civil Service is very often the wrong method. If anybody thinks that you are going to get the professors and staff of this institute to come in and sign a book at 9.30, to sign off at five and to produce a report at the end of the year to show what they have done, he is making a very grievous error. I doubt that that is going to happen.

They will handle them as they handle the farmers.

I think they will find it more difficult even than to handle the farmers. With regard to the two schools now being set up it is an open secret—the Taoiseach has said it himself—that three particular scholars were being invited to form the school of theoretical physics. One of them has since got a very important fulltime post but will, presumably, continue his researches. The other is not available for service in Dublin, and the third is a very distinguished foreign professor, who has been invited to stay here. He is certainly, I understand, a man of very high distinction in a sphere of study with which I, personally, am entirely unacquainted. What it is proposed to do is to set up a school here. What is to prevent that particular person from getting a Chair in a university college without any obligation to conduct any examination or any obligation to lecture a particular type of students and to pursue his studies in that particular place with a suitable library? That would obviate your overhead costs and do away with the whole idea of going step by step into bigger administrative costs. All our experience has been—it is the experience of the whole world—that when you start a particular administrative machine it spreads itself out. It is a remarkable feature of every branch of the Civil Service that it spreads and spreads. In the last eight years the cost of the Department of Education from the point of view of administrative expenses, inspection, etc., has increased by £3,000 per annum. It is now £25,000 more than it was in 1931.

With regard to the other matter, Celtic studies, I agree that there may be a special case for that, but some of the very best work that has been done, from the point of view of publications in Irish, has been done by persons who are actively engaged in the universities. A dialect survey is one of the things mentioned here. A dialect survey has already been carried out by a person who now holds the Chair of Modern Irish in Trinity College, Dublin.

There has been a good deal of talk about Irish manuscripts and the necessity for publishing them. I quite agree that a study of the Irish language should be provided with a suitable background of history, including social history and literature, to prevent it from being merely a linguistic exercise, a repetition of irregular verbs or a parrot-like reiteration of a small vocabulary on a limited range of subjects. For that reason I welcome the kind of work set down for the Celtic school. With regard to manuscripts, it is very doubtful if there are many first-class pieces of literature still unpublished. I speak merely of literature now. I am not interested at all in the Irish language merely as a corpse. A great many people are interested only in dissecting the corpse of the Irish language. We certainly should have dictionaries and grammars and dialect surveys. It is true that since the State came into existence in 1922 the Irish language has not made very much progress as a living language. I would suggest that, along with this effort to co-ordinate Irish studies and keep them on a higher plane, we should have an inquiry as to how Irish is faring on the lower plane. We have had 18 years' work with Government assistance—and now I want to speak entirely in a non-political sense, and without saying a word of criticism about anybody. We have had in this country for 18 years, with the assistance of two successive Governments, a particular effort with regard to Irish in the schools and outside of them. I had the honour myself to initiate a great deal of that work in 1922. I think the particular object in my mind —I think the Taoiseach has the same object in mind now—has not been achieved. The Taoiseach will agree with me in that. As far as I am concerned, I have very grave doubts as to whether the steps that have been taken to achieve that object are the proper steps. Government assistance has been given, unremitting, heroic, unselfish work has been done by the teachers, and anyone who discusses this problem should be aware of that. Great results have been got in particular cases, and in particular places, largely by the devotion to duty, the unselfishness, the skill and earnestness of teachers of various types, but if you take an average or apply a general test, I think you will find that the results are unsatisfactory. I suggest, as we are setting up a school of Celtic studies under Government auspices, we should endeavour to discover how far we have progressed in the last 18 years in the matter of Irish in general.

It is urgent that we should have that inquiry, and I am not asking for an impartial inquiry, because I am not impartial myself and I do not want to see impartial people setting out to inquire into this matter. I am entirely biased in the matter so far as I want the experiment which has been tried to succeed. But I should like to see an inquiry being held as to whether, on particular roads we are not travelling too slowly and on other roads, perhaps, too fast. I should like that inquiry to be conducted by competent people who desire the object which I desire, namely, the preservation and complete restoration of the living Irish language. I made the suggestion before in 1933, and in my opinion it has much more force in it now after the lapse of another seven years—that that particular inquiry should be held. I know that it is difficult to get the right type of people for such an inquiry. I do not want to get the type of people who are biased against the Irish language itself, and if I were a dictator in the matter I would entirely exclude the wild fanatic, who, very often, does not know very much Irish, if any, but who in his frightful enthusiasm for the language, although he does not know what should be done, seems to know nothing except that nothing should be done to stop what is being done. I do not know whether that is very clear or not. Some of the things that are being done are certainly not having the results that were intended. In my professional capacity I have, perhaps an opportunity that is shared by only a few people of seeing what the results are like. Some of them are wonderful, but whether the average is good is another question.

Is the average good?

Well, you see, I could not explain to Senator MacDermot whether it is or not.

I shall not go into that, but the point is: is the average good really? That is the point you want to discover, and if it is not good, then something has to be done about it. I am not in favour of the school of Celtic studies merely because I am one of the people who would like to be dissecting the corps of the Irish language and making philological points about it. I am interested in the living Irish language and I think we should have an inquiry now if it is possible in this country to get the right type of people to conduct an inquiry of that kind calmly, and if I had my way I would conduct its proceedings in the Irish language if it were only for the one reason that that would exclude a great many of the fanatics.

On the Bill itself Sir—there are points, of course, that can be made about it in Committee—I feel that the Bill should not be sheltered simply under the cloak of Celtic studies. It is a Bill that is much more far-reaching and wider than that. It proposes the establishment of an institute of higher learning, and says that the functions of the institute shall provide facilities for the furtherance of advanced study, the conduct of research in specialised branches of knowledge, and so on, and I think that that cannot be done without taking, in some measure, from the functions of the universities as they are at present. The analogies which the Taoiseach has given with regard to the Folklore Commission, the Historical Manuscripts Commission, and so on, are not sound. What we are asked to do here is, in effect, the starting out of further Governmental control, further Governmental expense, and new overheads and new educational structure—primary schools, secondary schools, training schools and colleges, vocational schools, universities, and a further institute of higher learning—and I think it is debatable whether that work, in its general terms, could not be done without this particular structure being erected.

In considering this Bill, Sir, the last thing I should like to happen would be to have it supposed that any remarks I have to offer are intended to be hostile to the idea of the Bill as a whole. At the same time, this is an occasion when those of us who are at all concerned with matters of this kind are called upon for fair and honest criticism. We are called upon to express whatever opinion we honestly hold about these matters, and I propose to express my views, not in a spirit of hostility, but in the hope that they may be of some help towards, perhaps, improving the Bill as it stands. I think that this whole question of institute of higher learning is a subject which illustrates one very serious drawback that we suffer from in our educational system. In spite of the machinery to which Senator Hayes has referred—the number of different types of college and so on that we possess—there is one institution that we do not possess, which might have been very valuable in regard to a matter like this Bill, and that is some sort of advisory council on educational matters, whether official or unofficial, which could consider this whole question of the endowment of higher learning in a calm and judicial manner, and privately, before the results of that consideration were embodied in a public Bill.

I have a feeling about this Bill that there is too much of administrative origin about it, that it was not submitted enough to people who are interested in general education and who are expert in general education. It is true that the Taoiseach did consult, on the one hand, the Irish Studies Committee of the Royal Irish Academy and, on the other hand, various people who are interested in physical research; but where one of the difficulties about the Bill comes in, to my mind, is the combination of these two things, and the Taoiseach, as far as I know, never called any body of experts together to ask their advice as to whether it was advisable to combine these two rather dissimilar subjects in one Bill. The joint plan seems to have emanated entirely from the Taoiseach himself, and to have been put into the form of a Bill by the civil servants.

I think it is regrettable that, in an important matter like this, which is going to have very far-reaching consequences for education in Ireland, we should have to depend on the ideas of one individual, no matter how high he may be in the State, and on the wisdom of a Civil Service Department. I think we ought to feel that the country is not quite so poor in people who do know something about these things as all that, and that before a Bill is presented to the Oireachtas—a Bill on which there is a fair amount of insistence with regard to each particular clause of it—it should receive more consideration.

The difficulty is that, no matter how much those of us who are interested in the matter may wish to see certain changes made in the Bill, or may feel doubtful about certain aspects of the Bill, we may find it almost impossible to get any change made in regard to these matters.

I have two criticisms to offer of the Bill, and they are both fairly fundamental. I regard this combination of mathematical physics and Celtic studies as unfortunate, to say the least of it. I think it unnecessarily complicates the whole machinery that it is proposed to set up, that it will give rise to no good results that I can see, and that it will in all probability render the working out of this scheme much more difficult than it need be. That is one criticism I have to offer. I propose to go into that more closely later on. The other criticism I have to offer—and it is more far-reaching still—is that the control of Government departments is far too much written into the substance of this Bill. On the one hand you have the Government making appointments to various offices in connection with this Institute and these schools of higher learning. On the other hand, you have the Department of Education coming into almost every section of the Bill, and finally you have a whole lot of most important actions that these schools must not take and cannot take without the authority of the Minister for Finance. You have then in the Bill the bringing together of two matters which have really no relation to each other at all, to my mind, and on the other hand you have an attempt being made to do a thing which I do not believe can be successfully done, and which I do not believe will be successfully done, that is, to produce research work under the close supervision and direction of any Ministry, whether it be the Ministry of Education or the Ministry of Finance.

These are the two fundamental criticisms I have to offer, and I wish it were possible to persuade the Taoiseach that they ought to be taken into account. They are not my objections alone. I believe if the Taoiseach were to consult almost anybody in either of the two universities in Dublin he would find that nobody really likes this combination of mathematical physics and Celtic studies except the Taoiseach himself. It is his own idea and nobody else, as far as I am aware, likes it or wants it. On the other hand, I do not believe that if he spoke to a single member of a university staff he would find acceptance or approval of this idea of control of research by the Ministry of Finance. It is extraordinary how these departments persist in the notion that somehow or other they can control these matters, although experience year after year, and decade after decade, has proved that that sort of control is an impossibility, that it does not produce any results. We have had the case here of the College of Science in Dublin. It was set up like that, to be a Government institution under the close supervision of a Government department. It was found after 20 years or so that the best thing that could be done was to amalgamate it with one of the university colleges, and I do not think that anybody has ever felt that any great harm was done by doing that, or that the institution in itself as it was, as a Government department, controlled rigidly by Government servants, was doing really good work.

There is, as Senator Hayes said, and as everybody will admit, of course, a most powerful case to be made for the endowment of research on Celtic languages and especially on the Irish language. It should be entirely unnecessary to convince Irishmen at any time, whether during war or during peace, that money spent on scholarship in relation to the Irish language is well spent. Now and again one hears extraordinary arguments put forward that the country cannot afford to spend money on the Irish language. If the country cannot afford to spend money on the Irish language, so long as it is seen to that that money is well spent, then the country cannot afford to exist, the country cannot afford to be free. There should be no question at all about there being a tendency to spend too much money in this way. What is really important is to secure that when you do spend money you get a return for it, and it is in relation to that question of the importance of endowing Irish scholarship that I would like to look at the Bill first.

The Taoiseach spoke about the manner in which this idea formed in his mind, and about the way in which it suggested itself to him that these two groups of scientific subjects could be put together under one institute. It seems to me that in putting them together in that way the Taoiseach has, as I said, put together two things which are entirely dissimilar, and for this reason—there is no other country in the world that is going to devote the amount of money, the amount of time and the amount of energy to Irish scholarship that this country ought to devote to it and will devote to it. We have had up to the present a considerable amount of Irish research work being done in various places on the Continent, and we should be for ever grateful to the scholars in different Continental countries who laid such a solid foundation as was laid for Irish scholarship, but, at the same time, I think we must all recognise, both in view of present conditions and in view of the ordinary equities of the matter, that the main burden of developing Irish scholarship must for the future rest on Ireland itself. It has more and more ceased to be the case in the last ten years or so, but it used to be the case, for instance, that when we in the National University gave a scholar a travelling studentship in Celtic studies, he was able to go abroad to Bonn, Berlin, Paris or Oslo, or some centre of learning on the Continent, and there he could take up where he left off at home, and could be brought further ahead than, in many ways, it was possible to bring him at home. That was the case, naturally, before the last Great War, because we had very little attention being paid to these things, and no systematic development of Irish research at all in Ireland. It was inevitably the case that scholars had to go to German professors, French professors and Scandinavian professors to get that training which they could not get at home; but since an independent Ireland was established it ought to have been the case that the whole situation was changed; that instead of our scholars having to go abroad to be trained in these things, they could get at home here in Ireland the most complete training available anywhere in the world in these subjects; that they would not have to go anywhere to be brought ahead and made into complete scholars in every aspect of Irish subjects, whether linguistic, historical, archaeological, or having to do with ancient Irish religion or the ecclesiastical history of Ireland, folklore or place-names, or any of the dozen other departments into which that enormous subject could be subdivided.

It should not be the case and it will not be the case, whether we like it or not, that our students can go abroad for those things in future. If we want to keep up scholarship in these matters we will have to provide that scholarship at home, and if we are going to provide that scholarship we must spend money on education and spend it generously. We may as well make up our mind to it. There are two things quite certain. If we do not do that we may as well resign as a nation altogether and, in the second place, if we are going to develop Irish scholarship we must endow it on a far more generous scale than it has been endowed up to the present.

This thing has been discussed to a considerable extent from the point of view of professorships and appointing professors and securing, through the agency of the Ministry of Finance, that professors will be made do their work and attend properly to their duties. We have a certain number of professors here at the present moment who can do that work, and are doing it in so far as they have students to do it with. But, to my mind, what is really important is to secure that young scholars who at the present moment find it more profitable, for one reason or another, to devote their abilities to subjects like medicine, law, engineering, economics and so on, will in future devote some, at least, of that ability and energy to the national treasures of Ireland, to Irish learning and Irish scholarship. The real trouble has been, so far, that all these other subjects have been endowed in one way or another. If they are not directly endowed they are endowed by reason of the fact that there is a livelihood to be made out of them very easily, whereas, in relation to Irish scholarship, there is no such thing. One result of that is that although we have, as has been stated, the foremost living authority on the Irish language here in Dublin he has only a handful of students, because, although there are plenty of clever students in our various colleges, those students are not induced to take up such subjects as the history of the Irish language, or the literature of early and middle Irish, because there is no future for them in those subjects.

The great object of an institute of this kind should be, to my mind, not so much to provide professors as to provide a far larger number than we have had at present of young students who will be induced to devote their ability, energy and enthusiasm to this subject and who will be assured, if they do so devote themselves, that they can live. If they cannot, then you cannot get these subjects developed. That is all there is about it. You cannot expect that spare-time civil servants, lawyers and doctors will provide you with the sort of apparatus of higher learning that you want in relation to all these Irish subjects in future. That sort of thing was perhaps possible at one time. We had some magnificent cases of that type during the 19th century, but the days of Queen Victoria are, unfortunately, gone for ever, and it is not in the least likely that you are going to get that sort of spare-time enthusiastic scholar in future.

If we want scholars—and I am convinced that it is vital to us to have scholars—we must endow them. We must make Irish scholarship of the best kind one of the best professions in Ireland, and that is what this institute ought to do. I develop that point so much because it has not been sufficiently adverted to up to the present, but it is in that respect that I think the great difference comes in between Irish scholarship and this matter of mathematical physics which is bound up with it here. In regard to other subjects like mathematical physics, chemistry, medicine and economics, it is perfectly feasible for us, in normal times at any rate, to bring students to a certain standard in our colleges, and then to send them abroad and have them brought to the highest standard attainable anywhere, in some foreign university. Not only is that feasible, but it is very good that we should do so, and it would be a bad thing, generally speaking, if we were to put a closed circle around this island with regard to other departments of scholarship, and to suppose that we could produce everything we want in all these various branches of learning for ourselves.

In every way it is most important that we should look at learning as an international co-operative matter; that we should train our students not to regard themselves as completely self-sufficient here in Dublin in regard to all the various branches of study, but that we should train them to look to the work being done everywhere else, that we should train them to want to go abroad in respect of subjects like physics, mathematics, classics, economics, and so on. It is both possible and, I suggest, essential in regard to these other subjects. It is not going to be nearly as possible as it was in the past, and it is not nearly so essential in regard to Irish studies, because they are the one matter in which we should be the leaders of the world. Instead of our sending students abroad to become finished Irish scholars, we should have people coming here, and we fortunately have had quite considerable numbers of people coming here at various times, and especially in recent times, from other countries to have their Irish scholarship brought to the highest possible degree of finish. But Irish scholarship is in a totally different position from other kinds in that respect, and that is why I think it a great pity that the Taoiseach had the idea of combining these two things in one.

This plan for an Institute of Celtic Studies arose from a memorandum submitted to the Taoiseach following considerable negotiations by the Irish studies committee of the Royal Irish Academy, and, from the various discussions in which I took part, I understood that the great reason for suggesting that this institute or school of Irish or Celtic scholarship should be a separate institution from the Academy was that the Academy has other branches, such as mathematics, mathematical physics, and so on; that the people interested in these branches have no special or necessary interest in Irish studies at all; and that if you were to endow Irish studies in the Academy to the extent to which they ought to be endowed, you would make the Academy top-heavy, and bring about a rather gigantic development of one particular aspect of the Academy's work which, generally speaking, would be unsatisfactory, and would tend perhaps to depress unfairly the other subjects in the Academy.

That, to my mind, was a sound argument as applied to Irish studies alone, but when the Taoiseach comes along with this proposal to combine mathematical physics with Irish studies, he is in fact, as I think Senator Hayes said, cutting across the work of the Academy to some extent. He is setting up a kind of doublet of the Academy in introducing this question of mathematics into the business at all. In other words, he is going against the argument put forward by the experts in this matter when they suggested that a separate autonomous institute of Irish learning should be set up. None of these people who made this suggestion of an institute of Irish studies to the Taoiseach—I can say this with the utmost confidence—ever dreamt that he was going to tie it up with this plan for a college or school of mathematics.

There is another point in that respect, too, and that is the difficulty of getting research work organised in any branch, but particularly in Irish scholarship which is big enough, without complicating it unduly. You have two additional complications brought in under this Bill, one being this matter of mathematical physics and the other, the ever-present and all-powerful hand of the Department of Finance. Under the Bill, you will have an institute with a double function for the moment and with the possibility of a far greater development, as the Taoiseach suggested, at a later stage. That will simply mean that the people who are trying to develop Irish scholarship will not only have to work at Irish scholarship on their own, but, to some extent, at any rate, whether it be greater or lesser, they will have to convince people whose only interest is mathematical physics of the desirability of such and such an action.

The Taoiseach may say that all that possibility is ruled out under the Bill, but I should like to suggest that when this comes down to practice and when you get the institute with its council set up, no Bill that you can devise will guard against the man who may be a member of that council and who would like to have his finger in every pie. There is nothing surer, and I prophesy this with the utmost confidence, than that if you set up this institute with a joint council for dealing at the same time, no matter in how remote a degree, with both Irish studies and mathematical physics, you will be running a certain risk of having mathematical physicists interfering with Irish studies and Irish scholars interfering with mathematical physics. It is an entirely unnecessary risk to run because the reason for setting up this institute of mathematical physics, as the Taoiseach said, is simply to bring a little honour and glory to the country. That honour and glory can be got in a variety of ways. It is not vital for the country to get it, but it is absolutely vital for this country to set up machinery by which we can have our own school of Irish learning. I agree that that work is not work which can be thrown on the universities. It is too big for that. All sorts of things need to be done in regard to Irish scholarship which have not been touched yet and which the universities, under their present type of organisation, could scarcely even begin to do. The Taoiseach himself mentioned place-names and folklore, and there are any number of other kinds of work, such as all the linguistic work required for the preparation of scientific grammars and dictionaries, and not merely one grammar and one dictionary, but whole series of these things need to be prepared.

I do not think that is work which could very well be thrown on a university without an enormous additional endowment, but on that point, there is one remark I should like to make with regard to my own college on a matter which is often lost sight of. The assumption is always made that University College, Dublin, is a complete institution, that it is fully equipped to do all the work it is called to do by the needs of the country, and that it needs no more endowment of any kind for that work. It should not be forgotten that, even in relation to the question of buildings, University College, Dublin, is only one-third complete. The buildings we possess at the present moment were designed as one-third of a complete building to house 1,000 students before the last Great War, and the financial conditions after the war were such that no more than that one-third could be put up, and we are now working with and housing over 2,000 students in that building. When people criticise University College, Dublin, and complain about various matters which are alleged to be remiss in that institution, I wish they would bear the fact in mind that the work of endowing that college has only been tinkered with up to the present, and that the whole question of the endowment of that institution has still to be discussed and settled in a satisfactory manner. If it were discussed from a broad standpoint it might quite possibly be found feasible to place Irish scholarship in such a broader scheme.

Generally speaking, I would be inclined to agree with the principle that if it is intended to have these two schools under the one institution, it would be far better to put them under the academy, and it is altogether ridiculous to say that the academy is purely a place where people come in and read papers to each other. The academy, like University College, suffers from the fact that its endowment is trifling. It could do infinitely greater work if it were given sufficient money to do it, and, even with its ludicrously limited endowment, it is doing a great deal of research in various branches of scholarship, and a great deal of work is being done at present, even with the most meagre endowment. There are all kinds of things for which little grants like £5, £10 and £15 are being continually given by the council, not merely in relation to Irish scholarship, but in relation to mathematical physics and other branches of learning.

The academy is in a position to do, and in fact does carry out, that kind of research, and it has carried it out in so far as its endowments permit it, but if we had a scheme for the setting up of an autonomous institution for Irish studies—or Celtic studies, because both go together, and I entirely agree with the Taoiseach that we ought to have experts in other Celtic languages attached to it besides experts in Irish —I would agree that if such an institute were set up for Celtic studies alone, it would be more important that it should be a separate institution. But, if we are to have mathematical physics or subjects of that kind, then I suggest that the whole thing had better be revised, and that we ought to begin at the beginning and consider whether we should not use the existing machinery of the Royal Irish Academy for the purpose.

I want to come to another aspect of the matter, and here again I would beg the Taoiseach "to bethink him that he may be wrong," to use Oliver Cromwell's phrase. I cannot understand how it is that control by the Ministry of Finance in such matters as this is being pressed for. If you want to endow learning, you have only two alternatives, either to pick the scholars you want to endow, give them some kind of charter, and endow them, or else, do nothing at all. If you think you are going to get advantages by submitting old Irish scholars, experts in archæology and place-names, to the control of the Ministry of Finance, you are making a complete mistake. It might be much better if the world were differently constituted, that people of that kind were amenable to the orders of the Ministry of Finance, but in fact, the world is not so constituted, and you should make up your mind at the beginning that either the Ministry of Finance will spoil it or will not control it at all.

If you are going to do the things proposed or suggested in this Bill, the words, "with the permission of the Ministry of Finance" should be struck out, wherever they appear. I make that proposal quite seriously, and I think the arguments put forward by the Taoiseach were entirely specious arguments. He says that the Government puts up the money and, therefore, the Government is entitled to see that the money is properly spent. That all depends on whether the Government is qualified to see that it is properly spent, and there is nobody in the Ministry of Finance or in the Government, or likely to be in a future Government, who is competent to tell whether an old Irish scholar is doing his work properly or not. If you had such a person in the Ministry, the first thing we should do is to put him out.

He would not be able to keep his job in the Ministry.

There is a tendency for civil servants and Government departments to get it into their heads that they can control anything, but these men are not competent to interfere with the work scholars are doing, or to tell scholars what they should do. I have heard of a case where half a dozen of the best experts of this country got together on a particular commission were told by an official that they should not publish a certain text after they had decided on it. That has actually happened, and it took several weeks of correspondence between members of that Commission and the Taoiseach himself to get the decision given by an official of the Department of Finance straightened out. That is what you are going to get where you have control by the Ministry of Finance. You are going to get scholarship hampered at every step.

Every time there is an appointment to be made, or a salary to be fixed, you will have to go to the Ministry of Education, where it will be studied by one expert who will send it to the Ministry of Finance to be studied by another expert, neither of whom is an expert in such a matter. You either have trust in these scholars or you have not.

If you think that Irish scholars are by nature lazy or deceitful, that they will take positions of that kind at large salaries without doing any work, your obvious course is not to give them those positions and to do nothing. If you want to get anything done, you must trust the people who are experts on it, and there is no use whatever in thinking that you can have Departmental control. I would urge the Taoiseach, as strongly as I possibly can, to consider whether it would not be a better procedure in this matter to set up some really autonomous body, to endow it, and to give it complete freedom as to the disposition of its funds. If you do not do that, I have again no hesitation in prophesying that this institute will not be as successful as it ought to be, and that sooner or later revisions will have to be made.

One of the difficulties about this matter of Irish is the curious fact that we have a way of separating Irish studies into Old and Modern, and talking, as Senator Hayes talked, about the dead and the living language. That practice, as far as I can make out, seems to have arisen from the peculiar historical accident that when University College was first endowed by the Government in 1909, it happened that a professorship of Early and Middle Irish and a professorship of Modern Irish were set up simultaneously. The idea then grew up that they were separate subjects, without relationship to each other at all.

It should be understood, Sir, that I did not say that. The Senator is going very far.

The Senator talked about the work on the dead body of the language, as if any work in relation to the tradition of Ireland were unimportant or dead work. I want to finish what I have to say on this subject by emphasising again that anything we can do and any money we can spend on the endowment of and the prosecution of work in relation to any aspect of the Irish language, whether it be Old or Middle or Modern Irish, on Irish history, archæology, place-names or folk-lore, will be well-spent money and well-directed effort, and that the setting up of this institute, if it is properly gone about, might be one of the most important things we could do for the whole future of the country. It is not merely our spiritual future, even, that is in question in matters like these. These actions have a value even going far beyond their own immediate borders, so to speak. Every aspect of the life of our people can be vivified and given colour and value by the work of an institute of this kind, if it is set up in proper fashion and allowed to do its work freely and as it ought to be done. Therefore I would suggest once more that we take the greatest care before allowing these proposals to become stereotyped and petrified, and before we close our minds as to any improvements in a Bill of this kind, so that we may see that the Bill is made as perfect as possible.

Tá fúm cuidiú leis an mBille seo agus cuidiú leis go fonnmhar. Is beag Bille a tháinig os comhair na tíre le fada an lá a bhfuil an oiread seo fáilte roimhe agus a cuireadh roimh an mBille seo. Rud amháin a chuir áthas orm, nuair a chuaidh mé ag cainnt le daoine mar gheall air, an fháilte atá ag na daoine óga roimh an mBille. Síleann siad-san go mór mhór gur rud an-mhaith é. Síleann siad—ní amháin daoine a bhfuil spéis aca ins an nGaedhilg ach daoine a bhfuil spéis aca in ádhbhair léighinn eile—gur gar an-mhór do chúrsaí léighinn de gach cineál an Ard-Scoil seo.

Maidir leis na scoileanna taobh amuigh den scoil Ghaedhilge ar shlighe ba chuma liom fútha go dtí gur chuala mé an diosbóireacht indiu. Ó thosuigh an diosbóireacht indiu, thuig mé chómh mór agus ba cheart don Taoiseach dul ar aghaidh leis. Thaisbeán an Taoiseach dúinn maidir leis an Scoil Fisice Teoiriciúla sin go bhfuil cáil i bhfad siar ar Éireannaigh ins an ádhbar léighinn sin. Is cinnte go bhfuil luighe ag muinntir na hÉireann le ádhbhair den tsort sin. Ó thárla go bhfuil "tradition" againn, sílim gur ceart dúinn é chothú. Ní fheicim cén tslighe a ndéanfadh sé dochar go mbéadh an scoil seo ar bun le hais Scoile an Léighinn Cheiltigh.

Níl aon difrigheacht i measg muinntir an Tighe seo agus muinntir na Dála mar gheall ar thábhacht na Scoil Ceiltighe. Is fada atá an Scoil seo ag teastáil. Deir an Seanadóir Ó hAodha nach bhfuil a fhios aige an bhfuil mórán sean-ádhbhar againn a b'fhiú a chur i gcló. Níl a fhios agam ach an oiread. Is mó an t-eolas a bhéadh aige ar an gceist sin ná agam-sa.

Sé'n rud adubhairt mé nach bhfuil a fhios agam an bhfuil mórán seóda móra liteardha le fáil san méid atá fós gan cló air.

Tá mé sásta leis sin. Sé an t-eolas déireannach fuair mise ar an sgéal sin go bhfuil na píosaí atá san Acadamh á gclárú agus go bhfuil dhá scór leathanach de theidiolacha cláruighthe faoi'n litir "A" cheana féin agus nach bhfuil an leitir sin críochnuighthe fós. Is cinnte go bhfuil roinnt sgríbhinní ina measg sin a mb'fhiú iad a chur i gcló, gan trácht ar an méid a thiocfas isteach faoi na litreacha eile.

An Piarsach—go ndéanaidh Dia grásta dhó—sílim gur mheas sé go dtógfadh sé timcheall céad bliadhain leis an méid láimhscríbhinní a bhí ar eolas le n-a linn fhéin a chur in eagar. Dá dtógadh sé dathad no leith-chéad bliadhain anois ba chóir go mbéadh muid faoi chomaoin ag an Taoiseach as ucht na scoile seo do chur ar bun, mar cuireann sí ar ár gcumas an obair a dheifriú.

Thagair an Seanadóir Ó Tighearnaigh don obair atá le déanamh. Tá na lámh-scríbhínní ann le scrúdú agus le chur i gcló. Níl a fhios ag an Seanadóir Ó hAodha cé mhéid litridheachta atá ina measg ach tá ádhbhair eile ann. Caithfidh go bhfuil scribhinní ann ar an bhfeallsamhnacht, ar an leigheas agus ar ádhbhair eile, agus ba cheart go gcuirfí iad sin ar fághail. Is obair í sin d'ollamhna agus scoláirí lán-aimsire.

Maidir le téarmaigheacht, tá obair mhór le déanamh uirthi agus géarghádh léi. Deir an Seanadóir Ó Tighearnaigh go bhfuil súil aige go gcuirfear foclóra teicneamhla ar fághail. Tá na mílte daoine a bhfuil Gaedhilge mhaith aca ag fanacht leis na téarmaí seo. Theastóchadh úghdair mhaithe agus scolairí tuisgionacha leis an obair seo a dhéanamh. An Roinn Oideachais, a rinne cuid mhaith le bliadhanta, le téarmaí a chur ar fághail tá fhios aca na deacrachta atá ann. Tá a fhios ag na hollamhna a bhí ag cuidiú leo chómh deacair agus a bhí an obair agus chomh mór agus a theastóchadh daoine lán-aimsire bheith ina bun. An tOllamh Tomás Ó Máille —go ndéanaidh Dia grásta dhó—rinne sé cuid mhaith den obair seo. Dubhairt sé liom nach bhféadfadh sé í dhéanamh i gceart dá mbéadh air leanamhaint do ghnáth-obair na hOllscoile ag an am chéadna.

Tá graiméar le scrúdú agus le cur le céile agus tá ceisteanna faoi'n leitriú le socrú. Sin obair mhór atá le déanamh. Tá súil agam féin go mbeidh an Árd-Scoil seo ina hAcadamh úghdarasach ar cheist na Gaedhilge ar fad. Tá súil agam, na daoine a thiocfas isteach san Árd-Scoil, go dtuigfe siad sin agus go ndíreóchaidh siad a ndúthracht agus a gcuid léighinn ar an gcuspóir sin.

Sílim gurb í an cheist is mó achrann cé acu is ceart an Árd-Scoil a bheith neamhspleadhach den Ollscoil no ceangailte léi. Sí mo thuairim féin ar an sgéal agus tá roinnt beag eolais agam air—b'fhéidir nach bhfuil an oiread eolais agam air agus tá ag an Seanadóir O hAodha no an Seanadóir O Tighearnaigh—ach do réir an eoluis atá agam ar an sgéal, níl aon dá thuairim agam faoi. Ba cheart an Árd-Scoil seo a dhealú amach ón Ollscoil. Tá obair speisialta le déanamh ag an Árd-Scoil agus a cuid oibre féin ag an Ollscoil. Is cuma an dtaithnigheann sé linn nó nach dtaithnigheann, is scoltacha garmacha na hOllscoltacha. Ní maith liom é admháil ach is fíor é go bhfuil an ollscoil ag ullmhú daoine le haghaidh na ngairmeacha beatha—dochtúirí, innealtóirí, múinteóirí agus mar sin de.

Ní ceart é. Ní fíor é.

Ní ceart é, ach is fíor é.

Is ar éigean is fíor.

Níl sé fíor i dtaobh na Gréigise.

B'fhéidir go bhfuil roinnt ann nach bhfuil sé fíor fútha. Ach cuid mhaith de na daoine a bhíos ag staidéar Gréigise, tógann siad í mar gheall ar go bhfuil brath acu dul isteach go Mágh Nuadhat agus go mbeidh sí úsáideach le haghaidh múinteóireachta ina dhiaidh sin. Cuid mhaith eile, toghann siad na clasaicí mar gheall ar go bhfeileann céim sna seanteangacha dhóibh le posta a bhaint amach. Is truagh gur mar sin atá an scéal gur gairm-scoltacha iad scoltacha éagsamhla na hOllscoile ach sin mar tá an scéal, cuid mhaith, ar chaoi ar bith.

Ní fheicim cén fáth nach mbéidh cómh-oibriú idir an Árd-Scoil agus an Ollscoil. Is fearr a bhéas an Ollscoil fhéin i ndon a cuid oibre a dhéanamh de bhárr saothair agus taighde lucht na hÁrd-Scoile. Mar tá an scéal faoi láthair, is deacair go minic do na hOllamhna san Ollscoil ádhbhar a thoghadh amach do na mic léighinn a bhíos a' cur isteach ar árd-chéim. Is minic a bhíos a dhréacht beagnach críochnuighte, nó cuid mhaith oibre déanta uirthi, ag mac léighinn, nuair a fáightear amach go bhuil an obair chéadna déanta cheana nó ar súibhal cheana ag mac léighinn eicínt eile. Béidh call le comh-oibriú idir an Ollscoil agus an Scoil nua agus béidh an comh-oibriú sin ann.

Tá cuid mhaith de mhuinntir na hOllscoile Náisiúnta i bhfábhar an Bhille. Níor mhaith liom ainmneacha a luadh ach ba mhaith liom a rádh go bhfuil daoine ann, daoine a bhfuil a saoghal caithte acu san Ollscoil, agus tá siad sásta leis an mBille.

Is maith liom nach bhfuiltear a' cuimhniú, go fóill ar aon nós, ar scoltacha ar ádhbhair túrgamhacha a thosú. Ar shlighe eicínt, chítear dom nar chiallmhar an rud dúinne airgead a chaitheamh ar ádhbhair den chineál sin. Níl an t-airgead againn len a n-aghaidh, agus bíonn siad an chostasach. Is fearr atá na hOllscoltacha móra sa mBreatain Mhóir agus san Státaí i ndon dul i mbun oibre den tsórt sin. Comh maith leis sin caitheann comhluchta gnótha, Imperial Chemicals, mar shampla, na milliúin punt ar obair mar í seo agus creidim féin gur fearr í fhágáil acu.

Is maith liom go mbéidh deis ag ar gcuid mac léighinn óg fanacht sa mbaile anois agus Árd-scoláireacht fhagháil. Is minic, le bliadhanta, a shíl mé nar bhfiú dúinn na daoine óga a chur thar sáile go mór-mhór le haghaidh an léighinn Cheiltigh. Deir an Seanadóir Ó Tighearnaigh go mba mhaith leis go mbéadh na daoine a' dul thar sáile le haghaidh an staidéir. Tá mise ar aon intinn leis gur maith an rud é an caidreamh le lucht léighinn thar sáile agus tá súil agam go leanfa sé sin. Ach is maith liom go mór go mbéidh an deis ann feasta an tÁrd-léigheann fhághail sa mbaile. Agus maidir le tábhacht an taistil, nar mhaith an rud é go dtaistileóchadh daoine thar sáile chugainne go hÉirinn? Má's maith an rud é do Éireannaigh dul go tíortha coig-chrigheacha is maith do choigchrigeacha teacht annseo. Creidim go meallfa an Scoil Cheilteach cuid mhaith agus ón méid a chuala mé annseo indiú creidim go meallfa an Scoil Fisice Teóiriciúla a lán eile.

Rinneadh tagairt don chostas a bhéas ar an Institiút seo agus dúbhradh go mbéadh sé níos saoire an obair ar fad a fhágáil ag an Ollscoil, Ní chreidim sin. Má hiarrtar ar an Ollscoil faoi láthair aon obair faoi leith a dhéanamh, an ndéanfar í gan airgead faoi leith fhághail len aghaidh? Dá bhfágtaoi faoi Ollscoil í, nach mbéadh ar an Ollscoil tighthe no foirgeanta nua fhághail?

Nach é an chaoi a bhfuil an scéal i ngach Coláisde Ollsgoile faoi láthair nach bhfuil a ndóthain slighe acu le haghaidh na mac-léighinn atá ionta! Dá n-iarrtaoi ar na daoine in Árd-oifigí na hOllscoile cúram na hoibre seo a thóigeál ortha féin, déarfaidís nach mbéadh ar a gcumas é a dhéanamh gan airgead faoi leith a thabhairt dóibh.

Thaithnigh liom an tagairt a rinne an Seanadóir Ó Tighearnaigh agus an Seanadóir O hAodha don theangaidh bheo agus an gádh atá ann go ndéanfar rud eicínt sa gcúis sin. Thaithnigh liom an rud a dubhairt an Taoiseach agus a' cur an Bhille ós ar gcomhair, sé'n rud é sin, go raibh súil aige go gcuimhneóchadh muinntir an Institiúit ar cháil an náisiúin. Ba mhaith liom dá bhféadfaí a chur in áithrid go mbeadh spéis faoi leith ag na hOllamhna nua sa teangaidh bheo. Ba mhaith liom dá bhféadfaí a chur in áithrid nach dtoghfaí aon duine mar ollamh nó oifigeach san Institiút nua ach iad san a mbéadh meas acu ar an teangaidh bheó agus a chreideas gur féidir í a thabhairt ar ais ar fud na tíre. Ba mhaith liom nach dtoghfaí ach daoine a d'oibreóchadh leis an gcuspóir sin a bhaint amach. Ach ní fheicim ce'n tslighe a bhféadfaí sin a chur in áithrid le riaghlaca nó le bata.

Tá súil agam gur daoine a bhéas dílis don náisiún agus don teangaidh nua a toghfar.

Tá focal amháin eile agam. Feicim, ar an mBille, go mbéidh sé de chumhacht ag an Institiút nua glacadh le airgead nó maoin a tairgthear dó mar bhronntanas nó deontas. Tá súil agam go mbéidh a leitheid de dheontais le fághail go fial ó mhuinntir na hÉireann. Is truagh nach gcuidigheann muinntir na tíre níos fearr, ar an nós sin, le oideachas sa tír. Fuair Coláiste na hOllscoile i mBaile Átha Cliath roinnt mar sin, fuair Coláiste Chorcaighe beagán ach is lugha ná sin fós an méid a fuair Coláisde na Gaillimhe. Ba mhaith an rud é do mhuinntir shaidbhir na tíre, nuair a bhéas siad réidh le n-a gcuid mhaoine, go bhfágaidís é ag lucht an oideachais. Chuideóchaidís le obair uasal, le cúrsaí léighinn, agus dhéanfaidís buan a gcuimhne fhéin.

Tá mé sásta leis an mBille agus tá súil agam go gcuideóchaidh an Seanad leis go láidir.

Molaim an Bille seo, agus fearaim fíor-chaoin fáilte róimhe. Tá gábhadh mór leis, agus is mithid a leithéid do theacht. Tá an Ghaedhilig briste, brúighte le fada an lá, agus teastuigheann cúram agus léigheas uaithe. An briseadh agus an ghéir-leanmhain a d'imireadh ar Ghaedhealaibh feadh na mbliadantach fada is cionntach leis an bhail ina bhfuil an teanga agus anois ó támaoid saor ó gach smacht, is mithid dúinn cúram a ghlacadh fá n-ár dteanga.

Ní ró-mhór an méid dí atá fágtha ar bhéalaibh ár ndaoine. Tá an Ghaedhealtacht cumhang agus scartha go mór ón a chéile. Ritheann sí ó na Déisibh i gCúige Mumhan go dtí Inis Eoghain sa Tuaisceart; ach tá bearnaí leathana ins an líne, agus gheibhmíd trí nó ceithre canmhaintí innte nach dtigeann ró-mháith len a chéile. Agus tá na canmhainte sin iad féin truaillighthe go maith le foclaibh agus le leaganacha atá brúighte isteach ortha ón Ghallbhéarla. Ní mór dúinn iarracht do thabhairt le hiad do thabhairt le chéile in aon tsruth amháin, agus iad a scagadh ón Bhéarlachas, agus ó aon truailliú eile a gheibhtear ionnta. Má bheir an Coláisde Gaedhealach iarracht ar sin a dhéanamh saothróchaidh sé ár mbuidheachas, chomh maith leis an airgead a caithfear air. Maidir leis an litridheacht, briseadh ar sin 300 bliadhain ó shoin nuair a cuireadh an Ghaedhilg fá smacht agus tá sí caillte agus curtha i dtaisge feadh 200 bliadhain. Ní bhíodh litridheacht ag furmhór muinntir na hÉireann mar ní bhfuair siad scoileanna ar bith agus ní fheicidís aon litridheacht á léigheamh. Ní mór í thabhairt ar ais agus a scaipeadh ar an choitcheanntacht. Ní mór cuid mhaith dá foclaibh agus dá leaganachaibh a thabhairt ar ais ar bhéalaibh na ndaoine, agus i scríbhinnibh ar scríobhnóirí, iad do chur in ionad na bhfocla agus na leaganacha Gallbhéarla nach bhfóireann don Ghaedhilig.

An ndeanfaidh an Institiúid seo an dá rud sin? Budh cheart go ndéanfadh, do réir a chéile. Ach ní mór dí bheith Gaedhealach tríd síos; Gaedhil le dearcadh Gaedhealach do bheith ar a barr agus ag a bun. Tá cuid mhaith Institiúd againn cheana féin a leigeann ortha féin a bheith Gaedhealach nuair oireann sé dóibh ach nach ndeanann an obair dairíribh, .i. na hIolscolta, an tAcadamh Rióghamhail, an Cumann Rióghamhail Eireannach agus uile. Peacadh sinnsearach atá ar na hInstitiúidibh seo. Geineadh agus rugadh iad i Sasain agus tá an rian sin ortha. Glacfaidh sé tréimhse glúin daoine leis an Ghalldachas do dhíbirt agus do ghlanadh asta. An Institiúid nuadh seo a geinfear uainn féin is ceart dúinn cúram a ghlacadh nach mbeidh rian na nGall uirthe.

Tá roinnt rud ins an Bhille nach dtaithneann liomsa, agus tá rún agam iarracht a dheanamh le n-a leasú ag an cheart-am. Ach fá láthair, cuirim fáilte roimh an Bhille.

Cuaidh daoine dem chlann tríd an dá Ollscoil seo i mBaile Atha Cliath. Bhí an Ghaedhilg aca ag dul isteach agus ní raibh níos mó acu ag teacht amach tar éis ceithre nó cúig bliadhna do chaitheamh annsan. Ní raibh meas agam ar na hOllscoileanna sin riamh. Muna bhfuil comhacht ag muinntir na hÉireann agus ag an Riaghaltas atá os ár gcionn na hOllscoileanna do Ghaedhealú, bá mhaith an rud é Ollscoil nuadh do bhunú agus bheith deimhin go mbeidh sé Gaedhealach ó bhun go barr.

Ní dóigh liom go luigheann sé ormsa tagairt don darna Coláisde atá luaidthe ins an mBille, .i. an Scoil Fisice Teoiriciúla. Is cinnte nach dtuigim an scéal faoi. Is dóiche go mbeidh teangacha fá leith dhá labhairt innte; b'éidir teanga Piatagaruis agus Aristotal; no b'fhéidir an teanga a labhradh i ngarrdha Pharrthais. Fágfaidh mé an scéal sin ag mo chomh-Sheanadóirí, an tOllamh O Tighearnaigh, an tOllamh Mac Seagháin, agus an tOllamh Mac Aonghusa. Má bhíonn an Institiúid féin agus an Coláisde Ceilteach, má bhíonn siad sin fíor-Ghaedhealach ó chraiceann go smior, beidh mise sásta leis agus sílim go mbeidh furmhór na muinntire Gaedhealaighe in Éirinn sásta leis. Mar sin, molaim go mór an Taoiseach as ucht an smaoineadh é chur ar bun.

I really should apologise for speaking in a foreign language but if the institute which is visualised in the Bill had been in being when I was young, possibly I would be able to speak in a language that would be understandable by the Seanad. I belong to a university and belong to the academy for more years than I can speak of and I am not going to curse this Bill. On the contrary, I am going to bless it. It is experimental but it is experimental in the right direction—in the cause of knowledge. There are risks attached to it as there are risks involved in every experiment. In every scheme that has advanced mankind and civilisation, risks have had to be taken. There are very few schemes by which knowledge has been advanced which at their inception did not come in for very strong and serious criticism, criticism which in time was proven to be quite unjustified in many cases. This scheme, of course, has got its weaknesses. There is one weakness to which Senator Tierney alluded and which I should like to stress because it is a serious weakness. That is that there is too much of the Minister for Finance about it. His dead hand, his deadening hand, is over it. I see a danger there but it can possibly be avoided. Experience will show whether we can get away from it and whether full autonomy can be attained for this institute. I do believe that autonomy is essential if the interests of knowledge are to be served by this institute.

It is very easy to indulge in criticism. We have too much of it in education. For my part I believe that education is a good thing and that we cannot have too much of it. We cannot have too much knowledge. One does not realise how little knowledge one possesses until one has been trying to inculcate knowledge in others for years. When one is cross-examined by one's classes, as often happens, and when one sees the regions to be explored and discovered, stretching out on every side, waiting to be travelled by further generations, one feels the need for more work in every direction. It is all right to say that professors in a university might do more research work. I do not agree with the Taoiseach that the function of a university is to produce citizens to become members of the professions, qualified to do practical acts and to fill particular niches in the social life in a practical way. I do believe that the universities can turn out people capable of research but I do think—here perhaps the Taoiseach agrees with me—that the lecturing professor or the teaching professor is not necessarily the best able to do research. You also find that research professors are people who are very bad teachers and are really wasted on teaching. I shall not mention any names but when the Taoiseach was speaking about theoretical physics, I was reminded of a man who has left a name behind him, of whom Einstein speaks with the deepest respect and his classes were anything but good. He was a charming man. He had all the faculties for research and for clear exposition but he could not teach. Teachers are born just as research scholars are born.

The splendid thing in my eyes which this Bill provides is the opportunity which it gives to the brilliant young students, the scholar who would otherwise be lost to scholarship, the scientist who might become a fifth-rate doctor, a tenth-rate lawyer or perhaps a first-class civil servant. Anybody who has to do teaching like myself will have the same experience. You, Sir, have seen them—fine scholars, going away, or looking for a post in the Civil Service. "Chill penury repressed their noble rage"—in respect of Irish or theoretical physics. This Bill does give an opportunity to take such brilliant young men out of the hopeless rut into which they get which leads them down into the professions or into the Civil Service. I have the greatest respect for the professions and the highest respect for the Civil Service. But these are exceptional people whose capabilities would be wasted in the Civil Service. Give them a chance. This Bill does give them a chance. That is one of the reasons I bless it, and I bless it emphatically on that account.

The argument of cost has been introduced into this discussion. The money might have been spent, we are told, in some other direction, perhaps to help the Minister for Defence. I believe a sum of £25,000 will purchase a bomber. Think how that will add to the cultural advance of the country or the advance of civilisation! We are told, too, that we should pay attention to other types of schools, that there are schools of meteorology and astronomy. The more schools I see in any institute the better. I do not believe there will be much competition or at any rate I believe there will be very limited competition with the universities. I can see this institute working not merely as a link with the universities but as a place which will give a great impetus to certain branches of learning in the universities. If wisdom is shown by the universities and the institute, we shall see a very big advance in Irish education. I think I know a little about the academy and, of course, I hope that the institute will allow the academy to continue doing the work that it is doing such as, for instance, in connection with the Irish dictionary. I hope that the institute will be able to supply them with new recruits to work on the dictionary, because that is the difficulty, and I am speaking with a knowledge—and I am sure that you, Sir, have the same knowledge—of how hard it is to get people capable of doing such work. I hope that the Government will think of increasing the little grant to the academy on the score of the Irish dictionary, but I do not think that this institute will undermine or thrust aside the academy or that, as a result of the setting up of the institute, there will not be room for the academy. I think that there will be more room for the academy, and that it can be used as a sort of centre both for the universities and the institute.

Of course, I realise that there is plenty of danger. There is even danger of the professors in the institute, let us say, waxing fat and doing nothing—although, perhaps, that is too strong an expression to use—but the real and chief danger is the one that you, Sir, stressed in your speech, and which I may be permitted to stress again, and that is the danger of over-interference by the Government and too much of the hand of the Minister for Finance. Give that institute, once it has started moving, as much autonomy as you possibly can have. Give it responsibility, and then let the universities give it criticism, and I tell you that the universities will bring it some criticism. I take it, however, that I am speaking for the university which I represent in saying that we will do our best to help the institute and certainly will be glad and proud to do anything that may advance it, because we have had the experience of centuries as regards education in this country.

In that connection, I should like to comment or make some kind of remonstrance with regard to a criticism of Trinity College that was made in the other House. I suppose I might be in order in alluding to it. The Deputy was mistaken in his view, and I should like to correct it now. I may say that the Deputy is a gentleman for whom I have a very considerable regard. He said, in effect, that Irish studies were not a matter for Trinity College. I am glad that Senator Hayes has stepped in and said a good word for us in that connection. The Deputy in the other House, however, suggested that Trinity College took no interest in Irish and, in fact, hated it.

I should like to ask the Senator whether he has read the official report of the Dáil debate in this particular matter.

Well, it is not so strongly expressed in the official report, but the newspapers took it up in that way.

Will the Senator say whether there was anything in the official report of the debate in the Dáil to suggest that the Deputy in question said that Trinity College hated Irish?

Well, not hated, but that the Provost of Trinity College was being brought in simply in order to treat one university like the other. The Deputy said:—

"It is not disparaging in any way to the work in Trinity College or the position of Trinity College in this country to say that our advanced students in Celtic studies, whether in old or modern Irish, are not going to come from Trinity College, but are going to come from the National University."

He said that we had turned our backs on Irish. I am quoting here from the Dáil Debates of the 17th April, column 1393.

May I suggest to the Senator that, from what he has read out, a research professor would never quote, or print in a learned paper, that the Deputy in question suggested that Trinity College had turned its back on Ireland?

Well, I think that you can gather from what the Deputy said that it was not exactly a compliment. I do protest against it, however, because I, as an Irishman, am rather proud of what Trinity College has done for that particular branch of studies, and I will state plainly and frankly, and will challenge anybody to deny it, that, so far as research in matters of Irish interest is concerned, you would not have the collection of manuscripts in the Academy or even in the Museum across the way or the National Library were it not for the work of Trinity College. These manuscripts were gathered at great cost by Trinity College and the collection across the way was the collection of the Academy, which was practically founded by Trinity College. Accordingly, I think that a little consideration should be shown to us on those grounds alone. As I have said, I have the greatest regard for the gentleman who made these, as it seems to me, disparaging remarks. They seemed to me to be born of ignorance and, therefore, I should like to correct them.

I do not want to bring in any note of acrimony into this Bill, but rather to bless it on my own behalf and to give it good wishes from the University. As I said before, it is an adventure; but, nothing venture, nothing win. I am glad that the Bill has not been postponed, and I am very glad that it is being brought before us in these days of darkness—of darkness visible, but visible to the extent merely of discovering to us sights of woe and regions of sorrow—and perhaps the Taoiseach, has lit a little lamp of learning and hope, which may yet be able to cast a gleam of light across the whole of the world. There were some further remarks that I wished to make, but perhaps it would be better to reserve them for the Committee Stage. I think that the Bill is a good one in principle and that it ought to receive the support of the House.

I believe it would be only fitting if we should bring to our consideration of this Bill a prayer of gratitude to God, because in the midst of the terrible tempest which has set almost the whole world reeling on its foundations, and strewn its seven seas with shipwrecks and corpses, we can have peace enough, tranquillity and leisure of mind enough to take thought for other things besides war and its havoc, for construction rather than destruction, for the things of the mind and the spirit rather than for the cult of that brutal materialism which has before our eyes sent its own shrines crashing, and carried its own appalling retribution.

In studying the provisions of this Bill for the establishment of an institute of advanced studies one finds oneself looking backward as well as forward. I am afraid one can scarcely mention ancient Ireland these days in certain circles—I hope Seanad Eireann is not one of them—without evoking a spirit of cheap cynicism, and sneering references to "the Island of Saints and Scholars". But the name represented a fact, for all that, and the state of things it describes, is derived, as some authorities think, from Ireland's action in a world crisis not unlike that we are passing through to-day. It will be remembered that the late Professor Kuno Meyer in his Learning in Ireland in the Fifth Century, traced the great floraisin of letters, which made our country famous in the centuries that followed, to the arrival on our shores of scholars driven from the Gallic schools by the storms of war, and the barbarian invasions. If that theory be sound, these literati splendidly repaid the hospitality our land offered them, by helping their Irish pupils to make it through subsequent centuries worthy to be described by Doctor Samuel Johnson, in his famous letter to the great Charles O'Conor as “The School of the West, the quiet habitation of sanctity and literature”. It may well be that the distinguished European scientists, whose coming has, to some extent, hastened the maturing of plans the Taoiseach already cherished for an institute of advanced studies will repay no less richly the welcome we give them.

We are a small impoverished nation; our resources are scanty, so that we can only make a very modest beginning, build for a start but two pavilions, so to speak, in the temple of learning we are now planning. But it is not the greatness of the revenues, the richness of the endowments which guarantee the best results from enterprises such as this; and, for proof, we need not go beyond our own country where the trifling subsidy afforded by Fergal O'Gara made it possible for Brother Michael O'Clery and his comrade chroniclers to produce the Annals of the Four Masters. The Abbey of Saint Germain des Pres—with its revenues eaten up by the rapacity of its commendatory Abbots like John Casimir, ex-King of Poland—had little material help for the scholars like Du Cange and others who foregathered in its library in the years when Mabillon and his fellow Maurists, d'Achery, Tillemont, Fleury, Lami, etc., by their stupendous works on ecclesiastical and literary history, pathology, diplomacy, biblical studies, chronology and liturgy, laid the scientific foundations of that great advance secured by modern research in these fields. The first Bollandists depended on whatever help a generous Abbot in Hainault could spare them. And yet, to what great works they set their hand and what great works they carried through.

It is well for us to keep these examples before us if we would form a correct picture of the lines our Irish institute of advanced studies is intended to pursue in the special fields of learning, research and publication to be assigned to it. And, if we do, we will find an answer to the question which seems to have bothered some of the critics of the Bill in the other House: How far will it impinge deleteriously on the work of the universities?

As one who has the honour to represent in this House the graduates of the National University, I am naturally much concerned by the question. But I believe—and the assurance of the Taoiseach, based on arguments which my own experience of the position makes me accept as sound, confirms my belief—that the existence of the institute will be of great help to the universities, and that there will be harmony rather than discord between them.

Amendments inserted in the Bill during its progress through the other House were evidently intended to make stronger the links with the universities and the Royal Irish Academy, and for this reason I approve them; though they may bring difficulties of another order. I have in mind Section 10, which makes the President of University College, Dublin, the Provost of Trinity College, Dublin, and the President of the Royal Irish Academy ex officio members of the council of the institute. Now we have no knowledge of the criteria applied to the selection and election by the relevant bodies of these dignitaries. The President of University College, Dublin, or the Provost of Trinity College, or the President of the Royal Irish Academy might be a man distinguished as a classical scholar, one who has made a name for himself in English letters, but he might not know anything about—or be interested in— the subjects for the promotion of which the school of Celtic studies or the school of theoretical physics has its raison d'etre.

It is obviously undesirable, out of a council of eight— the numerical strength of the first council—that there should be no less than three of those about whose qualifications to advise authoritatively in the work of the institute we can have, in the nature of things, no guarantee. However, the advantages to be gained by the close association thus assured with the universities and the Royal Irish Academy outweigh the disadvantages, and for that reason I approve of Section 10, while giving a hearty welcome to the Bill.

I feel rather nervous in addressing the House on this Bill, but I think it is up to somebody to put the farmers' point of view before the Seanad and I very definitely oppose this Bill, although I know nothing about the subject of this Bill. When considering whether I should oppose or support it, I asked myself the questions: Does the country want this Bill? Is this a time when we should spend £30,000 or £40,000 a year to establish and maintain an institute of advanced studies? I have come to the conclusion that the country does not want the Bill and that the country will give no support for spending any money whatever on this question. Of course, I admit that 75 per cent. of the people of this country, like myself know very little about the question. I also know that 75 per cent. of the people of the country, like myself, are fed up with all those Gaelic questions. We are fed up with the Gaelic League and the Gaelic Athletic Association, and we are fed up with the jack-boot, intolerant way they are carrying on. I and many people who are opposed to these organisations were at one time or another members of those bodies, but we had to leave them, because they became so intolerant and because of the methods which they were adopting.


I do not think the Senator should pursue that line, because I do not think these bodies have anything to do with the Bill.

We are talking about Celtic and Gaelic studies and the Gaelic Athletic Association and the Gaelic League are subjects which are included in this Bill.


There is nothing in this Bill that has anything to do with either the Gaelic Athletic Association or the Gaelic League.

I submit that both the Gaelic Athletic Association and the Gaelic League at least think that they have a great deal to do with this Bill.


There is not a word in this Bill about athletics from beginning to end, as far as I can see.

I submit to your ruling, Sir, but the intention of my remarks was to show that if there was a little more toleration in the Gaelic League, the Gaelic Athletic Association and these other Gaelic associations, it would be very much more to the advantage of Celtic or Gaelic studies than the present attitude of these bodies. If you rule me out of order, however, Sir, I am prepared to sit down.


I did not ask the Senator to sit down, but he must realise that these matters have nothing to do with the Bill.

On a point of order, again, I submit that the Senator must be perfectly in order in giving reasons to explain why, perhaps, his mind and the minds of some other people are turned against Celtic studies.


I do not think that arises on this Bill. The Senator could put down a resolution to explain why his mind was turned against Celtic studies.

I agree that any time a farmer stands up to speak his mind in this House, the professors and Gaelic Leaguers always get more fed up than we are with the Gaelic League and the Gaelic Athletic Association. It is not the first time that I have been called to order and made to sit down when trying to put the farmer's point of view. There are more people in this country than the professors, and I think we have a right to expound our views on these questions.


It depends on the questions.

I submit to the ruling of the Chair. If you, Sir, say that I cannot continue this discussion, I am satisfied to sit down. May I proceed?


I do not know the lines on which the Senator proposes to continue the discussion or not. All I know is that the Senator cannot discuss the Gaelic Athletic Association or the Gaelic League on this Bill.

Very well, Sir. I do not know where to start. You have put me off the thread of my discourse, but, under the circumstances, I think I had better sit down. I am afraid I cannot continue. The only thing I should like to say, as you will not hear what I intended to say, is that I think this sum of £30,000 or £40,000 a year, which it is proposed to spend in setting up this school of advanced Celtic studies, could be much better spent in building halls in the small towns and villages of the country where organised studies could be carried on. The money would be much better spent in supplying these halls with small libraries, with books, periodicals, papers and magazines, and it would be much more to the material, intellectual and moral advantage of the rural population and be a very much more effective way of spending the money than spending it on the establishment of this school of advanced Celtic studies. But, of course, that will not appeal to the professors. That is the farmer's point of view. I intended to refer to the attitude of the Gaelic Athletic Association and the other associations, to their jack-boot methods and to their intolerance. I had intended to ask the Taoiseach his opinion of what happened to him when he was severely reprimanded for attending a soccer football match at Dalymount Park, in conjunction with the Uachtarán, to welcome the representatives of a foreign country who came to this country to play a soccer match, and when the Taoiseach was severely reprimanded on that occasion, and when the Uachtarán was expelled from the Gaelic Athletic Association.


Does the Senator not realise that these matters are not relevant to the Bill?

These are all Gaelic and Celtic questions. I am not against Gaelic studies, and I would support any reasonable proposal for the advancement of the Irish language, but what I object to is the jack-boot methods adopted by the Gaelic League, the Gaelic Athletic Association and all these Hitler-like associations in this country who would not allow anybody to live but themselves. I say that they are doing infinitely more harm to the cause they advocate than the people who are definitely opposed to them, but, as I will not be allowed to talk on that subject, I will sit down.


I think the Senator has been allowed to say all he had to say on the subject.

Mr. Healy rose.


Before the Senator speaks, I must say that I will not allow a reply on behalf of the Gaelic League or the Gaelic Athletic Association.

If you will not, my whole argument falls to the ground because I am not a professor, but I happen to be a Gaelic Leaguer and I wanted to answer Senator Counihan. However, if you will not allow it, I will pass from it.


I cannot allow it. We must not turn the debate into a farce.

Is fonn liom labhairt as Gaedhilge, ach bfheidir gur bhfearr dom labhairt as Béarla. I do not know whether I understood Senator Hayes correctly when I understood him to say—I am asking for correction if I misinterpret him—that the dialects and the language had continued to decay.

Yes. There is a provision in the Bill for a dialect survey. The living dialects have continued to decay.

Senator Hayes is one of the old earnest Gaelic Leaguers who worked hard in the language movement when no kudos attached to it. He realises, as I realise, the progress which the language movement has made in this city for the past 40 years. When a few of us enthusiasts, some 40 years ago, spoke Irish in this city, we were looked upon as curiosities, as kinds of foreigners, but such is not the case now. When a few words of Irish appeared in any paper—and they were few and far between—we cut them out and put them in our pockets as something very precious. The language then was harassed by the Government of the day, and those people who had it on their carts were prosecuted. Such is not the position to-day. The language is spoken all over the country, and it is seen and heard everywhere. We see it on our street corners, and it is nothing strange now to hear it spoken around the city, so that I was surprised to hear Senator Hayes say that it had continued to decay.

With regard to dialects, I do not presume to be an authority on the matter, but I may be permitted to say here that, in my opinion, wonderful work is being done in the primary schools of the city. Wonderful work has been done in my opinion. In the early days of the Gaelic League we blamed the teachers for not doing their share but, unquestionably, that cannot be cast up against the teachers of the present day because the children, on coming home from the schools, are only too glad to have somebody to speak Irish to them. In my opinion, the dialect and pronunciation is exceptionally good for children reared in the city and the only problem I see in the city, as far as the Gaelic League is concerned, is that of the gap that occurs after the children leave the primary schools. I have an idea that there is a very big need for some organisation in this city—even though Senator Counihan may attack me—to endeavour to get the children to meet Irish speakers and consult with them and to advance, by reading, the knowledge they have gained in the national schools.


I do not think that this has anything to do with the Institute for Advanced Studies.

I submit that it has, Sir, in so far as the children who will be going into the institute in future which we are going to set up will require a knowledge of the national language. That is my reason for bringing it up.

Are children going into this institute?

I am speaking of the children who will be going in as adults later on. We were all children before we grew up——

And are still children.

I do not think that interruptions of that kind will carry any weight with me.


I would like to point out that an intervention by the Chair should carry some weight.

Very good, Sir. You are always instructing me.

I do not intend to take up very much time, but I think the last two speakers did contribute something to the debate. They showed a great deal of the misapprehensions in regard to the object of this Bill. I can assure Senator Counihan that genuine research and advanced study do not lead to intolerance, and that the most intolerant people are those who are shallow and have not gone very deeply. To my mind, the Taoiseach has in this an idea the principle of which we ought to support and that there is much in it, even in a country of this size, for all classes, and it is just as much in the interests of farmers, or business men, or others, who are, like myself quite incapable of indulging in advanced studies of any kind—certainly not on either of the two subjects in this Bill— to recognise that it is in the national interest that an opportunity should be given to a certain number of persons who are peculiarly fitted. If I were to put it on the lower ground, agriculture and industry do gain by anything that makes the country better known and adds to the fame of the country as a whole. The spirit in which these matters should be considered and dealt with is that of recognising that some of them can do what others cannot, and that part of our national effort is to make room for people who by peculiar equipment or genius are fitted to do research work in their own country.

I have nothing more to say except that I am impressed by some of the criticisms. I think some of them should be considered. I certainly hope that the Government will carefully restrict financial interference, because while it might, to a certain extent, be inevitable, it can, through red-tape, become crippling. At the same time, I do take the same view as Senator Alton. I do not want to do anything to destroy what is in my mind a good idea because of any misgivings I may have regarding some of the details.

So many professors have spoken here to-day that it is with great trepidation that I, as an ordinary citizen, voice my opinion at all. But, there has been so much talk about scholars, young and old, that I feel inclined to put in a word on behalf of the saints.


There is nothing about saints in this Bill.

I am afraid I am not a member of the saintly hierarchy but my own experience as a young scholar was that anything that I learned was drilled into me, not through the brain but through another portion of the anatomy. I fully appreciate the ideal that the Taoiseach has behind this Bill and it is one of the few occasions on which the Taoiseach and myself agree. I think it is most fitting that this country should make a gesture of this kind. Unfortunately, the Taoiseach has chosen his time rather unwisely and it is not, in my opinion, a period in which we should indulge in extravagance.

Under normal circumstances I would not regard this as an extravagance. I would regard it as a national asset which would bring credit and kudos to our nation, but it just so happens that we are faced with world war and with an unbalanced Budget and, on purely economic grounds, I must object to and vote against this Bill. I can assure the Taoiseach that if he can persuade his Minister for Finance to produce a balanced Budget in 12 months' time and not a Budget balanced by borrowing £1,000,000, then I, for one, will certainly give this Bill every support. In the meantime, I can see lots of other useful work for the money which this institution would cost annually, apart altogether from the capital sum that would have to be set aside—I can see lots of other much more useful and much more pressing work in which it could be employed. It gives me no pleasure to oppose this Bill. I do so at the risk of being called a base materialist. I am not ashamed of being called a base materialist but I think that we have pressing problems here at the moment, both social and economic, and also we have, or may have, very vital problems of defence both internally and externally. I see at the moment no possible excuse for expending this money, the taxpayers' money, on this very admirable scheme. I repeat again that if the Taoiseach can persuade his Minister for Finance to balance his next Budget, so far as I am concerned, I will give his scheme every support and wish it Godspeed.

I might say to begin with that I am entirely in sympathy with the objects of the Bill. I think such a Bill is required. There is no other country in the world that does not largely endow institutions similar to the one that it is proposed to set up in this country, but we are somewhat suspicious of experiments in education and we think that, with all the good intentions in the world, the frame-work of this Bill does not carry within it the means of attaining the great ends that we have in view. We have had experiments in all forms from elementary education up to vocational education. The one with which I was connected, extending over a period of 18 years, has not brought the results that should be expected. Large sums of money are being spent on vocational schools. It has yet to be seen whether those sums are justified. Preparatory colleges were set up in the country. It has yet to be seen whether this expenditure was justified. Preparatory colleges were set up in the country and we know they have been a failure. Even the university itself has been sharply criticised by those who have the interests of Gaelic studies at heart, and we have, naturally, a feeling of distrust towards any further experiments when those which have been tried are only partially successful or are complete failures.

The Leas-Chathaoirleach has suggested—it is an old idea in certain educational circles—the setting up of a council of education representative of all educational interests in the State— and that before embarking on an experiment of this kind a very profound examination and inquiry should be made as to the desirability of co-ordination in other educational departments leading up to this branch of higher studies. It is all very well to say that there are three or four eminent men available. I believe that eminent men will spring up in this country in the future, and with the increased educational facilities which will be available in the future, you may have very many more of these eminent men. I think it is not a very strong argument to say that we should set up this new school now, because there are two or three eminent men available at present.

This is an extraordinarily comprehensive Bill, and, for the life of me, I cannot see how under one roof all these matters that are supposed to be inquired into can be dealt with. I think that if medicine is to be dealt with, it should be dealt with in one of the institutions which already exist and which are equipped for that purpose. Likewise geology and meteorology should be dealt with in some of the institutions already in existence. All this work could be endowed, and a proper system of co-ordination introduced. I agree entirely with those who have referred to the dead hand of the Minister for Finance being raised over the head of one of these great men. That man's head cannot work with satisfaction while the dead hand of some administrative Department rests on his thinking brow. I do think that the Taoiseach requires great courage to embark on a scheme of this kind at present.

As I say, I trust that any remarks of mine will not be interpreted as hostile to the Bill. I entirely approve of the objects set forth in the Bill, and I think everybody will appreciate the courage the Taoiseach has shown, because it is well known that the Bill is not the measure that has been looked for in educational circles. I do not like to sound a pessimistic note, but it is well known that our elementary schools are in a very bad condition. Their equipment is practically nil, and very often it has to be provided out of the pockets of those who can ill afford to pay for it. Our vocational schools are not having the attendances they should have. I think there is very ample scope for improvement in that way. On the other hand, these old manuscripts will live, and people of the future will be found to utilise them just as effectively as they can be utilised at the present. I think the promotion of the spoken and the living language is one of the matters that should be dealt with before money is spent on these manuscripts. The manuscripts will produce nothing extraordinary in that way. I know they will produce very interesting and revealing facts in regard to the history of our country, but whether they will produce something that will contribute to the literature of the living language is another question. The language we know is in great danger of dying. Let us flatter ourselves as we may, we do not hear the living language spoken in the market places or as the ordinary intercourse of the people, as we did even 20 years ago. That is unfortunate. While approving of the objects of the Bill, I think it is extraordinarily comprehensive, and I do not think it will achieve the work that the Taoiseach expects. I think also that he should seriously consider whether the heavy hand of Finance should be the steering medium for this department.

I side with the professors in agreeing that there should be in this country some department to foster advanced studies. I leave it to the professors to decide what way those particular advanced studies should be conducted. I rather deprecate any additional expense on anything whatsoever in this country at present, but the sum which is going to be spent, at any rate at the outset, if this scheme is brought into operation, is a small one in comparison with the large amount of money which has been spent lavishly in many other directions. I have only one question to raise on this Bill and it is a very important aspect of the whole matter—the extent to which this institute will in the future help to revitalise and strengthen a universal knowledge of our language and our history. I should like to repeat that— the extent to which this institute will in the future help to revitalise and strengthen a universal knowledge of our history and our language. I was very much impressed a short time ago by the remarks made and the resolutions passed at the Irish National Teachers' Congress. I must say this —and I have practically the whole body of teachers behind me—that if the system which was so heartily condemned by the national teachers, who are in daily touch with the boys and girls of this country, is so bad as is described by the 11,000 people who are responsible for the teaching of our national language, then I think that in five years' time, which is the period for which this proposal is to operate at the outset, there will be very few people to reap the full or any benefit from the studies which this institute is supposed to develop. Now, just to quote a few extracts from the speeches made by the various speakers at that congress. The teachers, in effect——


I do not think it is in order to discuss that.

Well, Sir, it is complementary. If you have nobody to develop the studies, then surely, if you are going to start this institute, you must have a different system in order to develop the knowledge to take advantage of these studies.


But then that might lead to a debate on primary education, which would decidedly not be in order on this Bill.

Very well, Sir, I shall not pursue that. I did not mean to intervene in this debate at all, but I mentioned the matter to the Taoiseach before this debate started to-day and I am afraid that he cut me rather short. He said: "It is obvious that you do not know any Irish", and "Have you been at the schools?" He then went on to say: "I have been to the schools and I am satisfied with the system."

I think, Sir, that the Senator should not repeat a private conversation and then attribute to me words which I did not use.

I am very sorry if I have misquoted the Taoiseach.

I think it is an outrageous business. I certainly did not use any such words as that I was satisfied with the system. In a short private conversation with the Senator, as I was coming in here, I said that I had seen some schools.

I am sorry that the Taoiseach regarded it as a private conversation. So far as I was concerned, it could be quite public. However, if I misunderstood him, I shall withdraw my remarks, but these were the words that I understood him to use. I am not so much concerned, however, with the position in the schools themselves. What I say, and what the teachers said in effect, is that the situation is entirely wrong from the point of view of the after-effects. When these boys and girls leave the schools they drop their Irish practically at once, with the exception of a few people of the type Senator Hayes suggested and the people who are going in for Government appointments. From talking to the boys and girls in my district, where they have a good deal of Irish, I can see the effects and can see that there is very little improvement.


I do not think this is relevant to the debate.

Senator Hayes made the suggestion—and I think that at least I can follow him on the same lines—that there should be some inquiry with a view to altering these methods so that there should be some body to take advantage of this institute. I shall finish by quoting the Taoiseach's own words in Killarney a few weeks ago when he said:

"A little done well is a great deal better than a whole lot done badly."

When this Bill was mooted first I found that there was something that appealed to me as being very amiable about it, because I do like to see the Government coming along and proposing to spend money on something of which the immediate material utility cannot be demonstrated. In this country, although we have talked about ourselves as lovers of scholarship, I think that we have as materialistic an outlook as any country in the world. When it comes to spending any money, normally we want to see what the material return is going to be. Now, although I found that the Bill was so amiable from that point of view, at the same time it goes completely counter to a number of what you might call bees that I have in my bonnet. For a number of years now we have seen a continual further aggression by the State in every country in the world. I can see, of course, that it can be argued that the State has a right—as, I think, is set out in the present edition of our Constitution —to insist on a certain minimum moral and intellectual instruction being given. I might argue about that but, at the same time, I cannot set about refuting it on the spot. However, I have never been able to see that the Government has a right to interfere beyond that, and in this country up to now we have maintained at least the semblance of what I might call the autonomy of educational institutions. We have State-paid elementary education, but the schools in which that elementary education is given, are, nominally, under managers. There is the Department, of course, taking a certain amount of limited control. It purports to have limited control, but in fact practically all of that education is controlled by the bureaucrats of the Department. The same applies to secondary education. The universities have been established as autonomous institutions, and it does seem to me that now, for the first time, we are formally breaking the autonomy of education in this country.

I am not interested so much in the money side of the matter, or that the cost of such an institution shall be maintained from year to year by taxation raised from the people during those years, but I do object right away to the Government butting in on university or higher education at all. If we are going to do it, however, then the only form of such interference that, to my mind, could conceivably be agreeable would be that the Government would give a capital sum over to an autonomous controlling body of higher education, and then leave the matter to them, and not leave it to be discussed in the Dáil or in the Seanad or to be chivvied around at general elections or anything like that.

It seems to me that the genesis of this Bill might possibly be related to a statement made by the Taoiseach some years ago in Trinity College, and repeated shortly afterwards at some other gathering—it might have been at a Fianna Fáil Ard Fheis—a statement which depressed me enormously because, on that occasion, I did feel that he was actually speaking the minds of the people and my mind on this point was in disagreement with the minds of the people. I have no intention whatever of misrepresenting the Taoiseach and am speaking from memory, but this is, roughly, what he said: "That we must face the situation that universities, as they used to be understood, were a thing that we could not afford in this country; that the function of the universities in the future would be to provide us with such things as, say, experts for our industries, and that, as far as purely cultural education was concerned, what we would have of that must be provided by our secondary schools." As I say, I am speaking from memory and do not wish to misrepresent the Taoiseach. Now, I am quite prepared to believe that the Taoiseach, having sized up that that was the view of the people here and that it was impossible to fight against it, has amiably proposed, with regard to these two branches, Irish studies and the form of mathematics known as theoretical physics, that they should be carried on, to use a French phrase, as a mere gratuité—a thing not directed to a material end—and that they should be financed by the State.

Although I could spend a lot of time criticising the universities, I still think that, under the form of autonomous universities, there would be a much better prospect of doing really valuable work in either of these two branches. The Taoiseach spoke about the brilliant student, with the making of a scholar in him, who goes to a university abroad and then comes back to this institute and is put on work in connection with these manuscripts and has a position, with a guaranteed pay, equivalent to that of a civil servant. There, again, the Taoiseach is accepting the fact that nobody in this country is prepared, for the sheer love of learning and for the sheer love of the beauty which may be found in old Irish literature, to devote his time and his energies to that work; that in this as in every other case there is going to be nothing gratuitous in the cultural sphere, and that the way you can get people to do the arid work of digging up manuscripts and trying to prove mathematical formulæ is to give them a sort of guaranteed position as a civil servant. The Government is going to be responsible to the people for the spending of the money that is raised and the Government must, in those circumstances, have a machine for seeing that a certain end is aimed at and that that end is attained. How they are going to do that I do not know. I understand that Liebnitz who, I believe, was a much greater mathematical thinker even than Hamilton, although he was not Irish, left a note that he had proved a certain mathematical formula, and before the last war I did hear that there was a prize of £10,000 for anybody who could rediscover the proof of this formula. It has not been done. I do not know how you are going to say to a man, "Sit down and try to work out the proof of this particular formula." How long are you going to give him to do it? When are you going to say to him, "Your analogously Civil Service pay has got to stop unless you hurry up with it." Under the autonomous system of universities you can still do things. I know a man and the Taoiseach knows him too, and I remember one time when a certain well-intentioned and wealthy man actually endowed a Chair in a university in a certain subject to be occupied by that man. The Government could if they so desired, with regard to one of the existing universities, take certain scholars that the Taoiseach has in mind and endow Chairs or endow a new faculty. Those men are going to be alive only for a certain time. This institute is presumably going to be permanent. When it comes to appointing their successors the best way to have them appointed would be by the appropriate body in the universities.

If I might digress, under your rigid control, a Leas-Chathaoirligh, in the universities you have county council scholarships. I know it is an unpopular thing to say but, personally, I can never see why a poor farmer, slaving away on the land, with a family who might be quite good on the land but who have not that purely mental capacity for passing examinations— which is one of the main industries in this country—I can never see why that unfortunate farmer should be taxed or should have to pay special rates or should be made poorer in order to pay for his neighbour's son, whose particular forte is passing examinations, to pass to a university with a view to getting a diploma as a doctor and getting a job in England. I have never been able to see the point in that. My idea is that, primarily, the parents are responsible for the children's education and there is no reason why I should pay for another man's children to get a better job than my own children are likely to get because they have not the particular faculty for passing examinations. Incidentally, arising out of that, you have representatives of county councils figuring in the governing bodies of universities and actually having their say in the appointment of professors to various Chairs. In the case of the National University that seems to be perfectly futile, but here, it seems to me, you are going to have that brought to its absolute logical conclusion. You are going to have you and me going around the country at a general election and the Government is going to be responsible to us in the Dáil or in the Seanad and we are going to get up and have our little say as to whether this man should be in this job or whether he should not. You may have an individual getting up in a very angry frame of mind and saying that some man has been messing about with some ancient Irish manuscripts for the last year and there has been no result, or saying that another man has been delving into mathematical formulæ for a long time and what is it all coming to. Where you have the autonomous body that sort of thing cannot happen as long as those who are in intimate contact with them and who are interested in the matter are satisfied that good work is being done. They realise that a man might work for ten years and that it might not lead anywhere.

There is another thing I rather disliked, although I have a certain amount of sympathy with it from my own experience. The Taoiseach in his speech seemed to me to have in mind what I may call the propaganda mentality. There is no doubt about it that when you go abroad and people ask you what particular subjects it would be well to come to Dublin to pursue a postgraduate course in, you do feel that you would like to be able to tell them that Dublin excels in this, that or the other subject. But really that is quite unworthy. This constant thinking about trying to get cheap prestige for the country, and semi-bogus prestige, is quite unworthy. The best thing for this country is the truth, and the truth as it lies behind this Bill is that we personally recognise that we have a lower standard of education here. In my opinion, the standard of education in this country is below European average. I do not expect people to agree with me on that. I think what was implicit in the Taoiseach's speech in Trinity College was that we have got to face up to the fact that nobody in this country is going to bother his head working on a subject or reading a book unless he can say to himself, "When I have learnt the contents of this book I can sit down for an examination and get a job beginning at so much and rising by annual increments to a maximum of so much." If the people in this country want Irish learning that cannot be done until you have a body of people in this country who love it sufficiently to work for it without the previous guarantee of a job.

The Taoiseach also spoke about specialised knowledge creating more and more need for such an institute. I do not agree with that either. In relation to such a subject as Irish, philosophy or anything else, if you look at the great philologists of the 19th century, the great historians of literature, you will find that their work is mostly associated with the universities. I do admit that in my own experience I have observed that there has been a certain weakness here in the fact that the National University appears to have no real provision for the publication of valuable theses by their students. I remember talking to a scholar of European reputation in this country—the Taoiseach may have been walking around the same ring at the same time—about a certain man who wrote a thesis in the National University many years ago which has never seen the light, and another graduate of the National University, when a new volume of the Bollandists came out, containing the life of an Irish saint, told me that she had written a life of that particular saint as her thesis and it was now presumably kicking around the National University. I am all in favour of giving money away for things whose utility is immediately obvious. We have already the Manuscripts Commission and the Folklore Commission. The Government could endow in the university, with a capital sum, a University Press for publishing works of erudition of national or international importance. The Government might endow new Chairs in the National University. Instead of that we set up this new body. I think that in connection with Irish we have in the university a standard rather lower than we would have in any other language. For instance, I find boys—I do not know whether in the university or the secondary schools—who in French would be reading Racine or Moliere, in Latin would be reading, in a fairly early stage, Virgil, and in English, Milton, Shakespeare, Chaucer, and who would in Irish be reading "An Baile Seo 'Gainne" or "Jimín Mhaire Thaidhg"—which, I think, is a recognition that a lower cultural standard is accepted in Irish.

Could the Senator tell us to what these Irish works he mentioned would correspond in the English language?

The Senator is asking me possibly more than I could know. My reading in the English language is not as universal as all that. They are stories about country boys playing their games—quite amusing to read to your children.

Fairy tales?

Not exactly fairy tales. They might run in a juvenile magazine, but you are trying to land me into a form of libel. I doubt very much whether, if a great number of the books that boys read in secondary schools had been written in English, they would ever have found a publisher.


The Senator is in danger of being landed into a form of irrelevancy, apart from libel.

I come back to the point that this Bill seems to me to be really a matter of despair. I can imagine with regard to, say, scholars in Irish studies in the National University, these people being withdrawn for this institution. Although we are told that this is not going to injure the universities in any way, if you propose to take out from the National University Doctor Osborne Bergin and Professor MacNeill—I mention these names because they occur to me—what are you proposing? You are proposing that those men who at the moment are available for contact, and for the communication of the content of their minds and the discipline of their minds in that particular sphere to students, should come out of the National University, and it will be only the specialised students who will have contact with them. In other universities you have professors who have practically no work to do. They have very few students, and I suppose there would be very few here. I do not see why the Government cannot look around the world and then bring to this country the greatest scholars in these subjects and associate them with one of the existing universities. There is no reason why, when they are in the university, they must have classes of 50, 60 or 100 students. They may, over three years, never have classes of more than two or three. That will mean that they will have a closer contact with those students.

Again, I have rather a prejudice on the Irish side. I want to see a movement away from "Jimín Mháire Thaidhg," and, on that side, I am quite sympathetic, but as for mathematics, and here I confess to a sort of blind prejudice, for the last 400 years since the Cartesian reform, all this idea of scholarship and research has been in the mathematical sphere. Mathematics is a subject I rather dislike because it is so essentially abstract. This branch of study is going to deal with the abstract idea of measure and number from things. There is nothing particularly national about that, and there is no reason why anyone should come here for the particular study of mathematics. The Taoiseach says that from the 19th century we have a very creditable tradition in mathematics. That may be, but if you go back to ancient Greece, you will find there men whose towering, prying minds into the mysteries of things made the discovery of the most basic principles in mathematics. You have them in France. Pascal was himself an enormously important mathematician. You have also Descartes and, in Germany, you have Liebnitz. I could go on giving names for ever, so that if we have Hamilton and one or two others here, that will not distinguish us as a country to which everyone should turn for mathematics. Germany produced Schroedlinger, Einstein and Liebnitz, and if it becomes a question of climate favouring a certain crop in the country, there is no reason why anyone should say that the Irish climate favours mathematics more than anything else.

If, however, I sat down and thought what are the things that distinguish Ireland from other countries, the two things which would immediately strike one are that Ireland is, by definition, Irish—it is not as Irish as it was before Ireland collapsed in the 17th century—and that it is, as we observe, generally speaking, Catholic. I can quite understand that a person might assume that, in certain branches of philosophy, Ireland ought to be the obvious place to turn to. At the present moment, for the branch of philosophy I have in mind, two of the most distinguished places are Fribourg in Switzerland and Louvain in Belgium. I know a college in Fribourg which is financed, because it owns, as an asset, the profits made by the hydro-electric works in that place. You will see there that the Swiss, who are extraordinarily State-olatrous, whenever they instituted this place, realised that an educational institution must be autonomous and free of financial control by the Government, and they themselves draw the profits. They do not have to wait for the local authority to vote the money.

Although I am glad to see money coming from any quarter to foster certain branches of study which do not come into the ordinary elementary and secondary schools' programmes, the Bill seems to me to be generally bad. It is bad because it breaks in formally upon our tradition, and the only sound tradition, of the autonomy of educational institutions. The Department of Education—a Department with an eminently worthy body of men, I have no doubt—are more or less held at arm's length by the universities. Here they are now going to have an institution more directly under their control than even the elementary schools are. I cannot see that any case has been made, in the starting off of this place, for a theoretical physics side of the institution. On the whole, although I see much that is attractive in the Bill, I feel that we are thinking only in terms of to-day. The Taoiseach sees a number of distinguished scholars and thinks that it is a splendid opportunity to bring them here to shed lustre on our country for this institution, an institution under Government control. That institution —and it does not matter how well meaning the Government is—is automatically going to suck some of the strength away from our universities, either in the present or in the future. It is going to break down the autonomy of education here, and the Government, which now controls us in every mode of life and particularly in the material mode, is going to have this institution under its control.

From what the Taoiseach said about students going there, having the makings of scholars in them and having a sort of guarantee from the Government of something equivalent to a Civil Service job afterwards, the whole thing seems to me to flow from that despair—eminently justified, I think— which the Taoiseach showed three or four years ago when he said, plainly, that nobody in this country is going to bother about higher education, except with a view to qualifying himself for getting a job.

I wish I would not be misquoted on every occasion.

I think what the Taoiseach said was that we must recognise in this country that we cannot afford universities, as they used to be known, and that the job of universities was going to be the providing of experts in branches of utility. That, I think, is a clear statement, and that I describe as despair because the Taoiseach, on that occasion, was actually voicing the despair which I felt in myself, and I did not see what else he could feel about it but despair. If the people of this country are not prepared to love learning for its own sake, and without any reward, I do not think that any money poured out by a Government is going to change them in that view.

If you have a body of men working away in higher mathematics or in Celtic studies, trying to earn their X pounds a week, then there is no point in scholarship at all. There is no real utility, no material utility, in Irish studies and no material utility in higher mathematics. The only point in them is the delight of the mind in knowing, and if we admit here that in our country there is no delight of the mind in knowing, but in getting something into our pockets, then under those circumstances there should be no ground at all for an institute of higher learning, and on this, as on every other question, I must stand against any further extension of Government activity.

I think we spend over £4,000,000 on education—I am not going to be too exact—and when a number of people say a great deal of that is like sending money down a drain, that does not impress me, because in a great deal of what is spent by the Government, what matters is the harm that is being done by the expenditure. A great deal of the money, I think, is harmfully spent, just as money spent on the Department of Industry and Commerce is harmfully spent, and I am not satisfied this money is not going to be harmfully spent in a way that would injure our universities. Further, it is a departure from the one point where we did nominally declare that the Government had to stand aloof, and that was from education.

I think that it would be a good idea if we could find out now if this debate is likely to go on or to adjourn for tea?


We could adjourn for tea, and to give the Taoiseach an opportunity to get a rest.

Are we going to have many more speakers?

The Taoiseach has to speak himself.

The Taoiseach has been here since three o'clock, and I now move that we adjourn until either a quarter to eight or eight o'clock.

Sitting suspended at 7.5 and resumed at 8 o'clock.

I wish to support this Bill, though I feel that doing so at this particular moment is somewhat of an act of faith in the survival of certain sort of values which possibly is not justified. At any rate, I am prepared to make it. Those who are disposed to be contemptuous of men who talk—as the Taoiseach said the other day—as if we could live by bread alone ought not, on the other hand, forget that these higher things cannot survive unless there is bread. There must be a certain basis of material prosperity for all culture. Even here in this country the building up of a prosperous agriculture is not a mere matter of material values but a preliminary to the building up of a worth while culture which may be superimposed upon it. I support this Bill, although there may be a great many differences of opinion as to the particular machinery that is being used by the Government and as to the combination of subjects that the Government has chosen. There is a very sensible French proverb which says: "Le mieux est l'ennemi du bien". Overmuch search for the best may prevent one from doing what is good. I feel sure that this Bill will do good rather than the opposite, even if it does not do as much good as some supporters seem to expect.

Nothing in the discussion surprised me so much as that so many Senators, including Senators Hayes, McGillycuddy and Cummins, have spoken as if the value of this Bill depended entirely on whether or not the attempt to revive Irish as a spoken language succeeds. I submit that, even if there had been no attempt to revive Irish as a spoken language or even if the attempt now being made to do so ultimately fails, that is nothing at all against this Bill. The study of Celtic languages and Celtic culture is something I should always support very warmly, even if I were totally against the attempt to revive Irish as a spoken language.

I share with Senator Tierney an objection to hearing Irish spoken of in terminology which suggests that it is a corpse. I have never liked the terminology by which Greek and Latin are referred to so often as dead languages. To my mind, it is not proper to call anything dead that has an important living influence. I would suggest that Greek, for instance, is in every important sense very much alive, and that, even if classical Greek is not spoken, Greek and Latin are a great deal more alive to-day than such languages as Turkish or Rumanian because they contain infinitely more treasures that are available to humanity. These so-called dead languages are actively influencing the minds and hearts of men all over the world. It, therefore, does not seem to be sensible to call them dead. As Senator Tierney said, nothing that forms part of the Irish tradition, whether in the way of language, history, folklore, archæology or other subjects connected with our past should be regarded as dead. These are part of the living Irish nation, and the fact that the Irish language is not the spoken language of the country or of men of culture makes no difference at all to that fact. Daniel O'Connell, for example, was entirely in favour of letting the Irish language die as a spoken language, but I am sure he would be equally strongly in favour and was equally strongly in favour of keeping alive a knowledge of Celtic studies just the same. I think myself that the money spent on advancing Celtic studies in this way is spent to a great deal more advantage than the enormously larger sums which are spent on the attempted spoken language revival. Whether I am right or wrong in that, at all events I do suggest that it is no proper criticism of the Bill to say that unless the language survives the Bill is worthless, and that we are, perhaps, building an elegant superstructure where there is no proper foundation.

If there is any ground for talking about a lack of foundation it would be rather as suggested in the speech of Senator Desmond Fitzgerald. Is it a fact that there is not that love of learning in this country that we should like to see? I am afraid it is. It seems to me sinister, for example, as I have heard, that in University College, Dublin, nobody ever takes the Honours Classical course unless he is going to be a teacher or a priest. Rightly or wrongly, I have regarded the study of the Classics as one of the finest educations in the world. I think it is terrible that just because it has not got an obvious bread-and-butter value nobody nowadays in this country seems to attach importance to it. Will that be so as regards Irish studies? The Taoiseach has spoken of the treasures that are to be unearthed by the translation and publication of these manuscripts. I am not sure that he is not exaggerating these treasures. I hope he is not. It may turn out that the value of the manuscripts is not so great and the treasure may prove almost as disappointing as the Wicklow gold mines. Possibly the greater part of treasure there is in the way of Irish manuscript remains has been already unearthed. The question I feel inclined to ask is: Are we making proper use of such Gaelic treasures as we already have? Much has been already unearthed and made available and has anything come of it? We have had a rather depressing picture given us of the lack of enthusiasm for Gaelic studies. I gather from this debate that the number of advanced students in such subjects in the universities is very small. Senator Tierney seems to think that that could be procured by endowment on a very large scale. Can such endowment be on a sufficiently large scale to make any material difference. After all, unless you expand the institute to something approaching gigantic proportions, the number of jobs in relation to the number of intelligent or intellectual students who go to the universities must be very small, indeed. I question whether there is any future even for Celtic studies in this country as a source of culture unless there is an increase in the number of people who are prepared to take them as an honours subject in the universities and are prepared to leave over the acquisition of something more vocational and technical until they have taken their degree in that subject. I do not know whether that conflicts with the Taoiseach's idea of what a university should be but it certainly does not conflict with my idea of what it should be.

I do not propose to enter into the dispute as to whether or not this institute should be put into the hands of one university or the other, or both universities. I cannot help feeling that that is relatively unimportant and that one should be content to accept the scheme as it is presented to us in that respect, especially as there are two universities. I do feel that there is something in what the Taoiseach said about possibly raising a sense of grievance if the Government proceeded to give endowments to one university only for advanced studies in subjects in which both universities have shown great interest.

One thing that does surprise me about the machinery of the Bill, as I indicated at the beginning of the debate in a question to the Taoiseach, was that use was not made of the Royal Irish Academy, because, after all, the Royal Irish Academy has been intimately associated with these studies. I think all the names which the Taoiseach mentioned as names that should be set up in honour wherever men are engaged on these studies were the names of men who were associated with the Royal Irish Academy. Petrie, O'Donovan, O'Curry, Whitley-Stokes and I think I am right in saying Rowan-Hamilton himself were all intimately associated with the Royal Irish Academy. It is true that some changes would have to be made.

Surely it was not only the Academy that provided the means by which they got their bread.

I think the Academy did provide the means for O'Donovan and O'Curry and that they lived by stipends which they had from the Academy. I am not positive on that point but I think they did. Another man associated with the Academy was John Gilbert. With that tradition behind the Academy, with the premises and the fine Library it has got, I do not quite see why use should not have been made of the Academy in this connection. I cannot help feeling that the result of the Bill must be the eventual disappearance of the Royal Irish Academy, that it will leave that institution without any adequate raison d'etre. I hope I am quite wrong. As I said before, I do not think that we should make too much fuss about questions of machinery. I would not be prepared to oppose the Bill merely because I felt that use should be made of the Royal Irish Academy and that we should build upon that foundation.

I would have liked this Bill better, as many other Senators have also said, if the only school of studies that was being instituted was the Celtic school. It so happens that the subject of theoretical physics is not one that makes any appeal to me. I know nothing about it and I imagine that most Senators are in my case. The Taoiseach could hardly have chosen a more abstruse subject in which to set up a school. He has congratulated himself on the fact that in doing that he had avoided the danger of constituting this institute on what he called a narrowly humanist basis. I was rather taken aback by that expression because it sounds to me to be a contradiction in terms. Surely, to the extent to which anything is humanist, it is the opposite of narrow.

I meant a narrow definition of humanistic studies.

I accept that correction, but I gathered that in the Taoiseach's opinion he was avoiding a danger that might have arisen if he had coupled with advanced Irish studies something less abstruse and remote from the ordinary human being than theoretical physics. In fact, I do not even now see what other meaning was to be put upon his words and I confess that I would have liked this institute to be more humanist than it is going to be. I do not just know how humanist advanced Celtic studies will turn out to be. It will depend rather on the contents of these manuscripts and also on the character and outlook of the men who will be appointed as professors in advanced Celtic studies, but I should more gladly have seen the setting up of a school, shall we say, of modern Irish history or of modern European history in general—of modern Irish history with a European background—than I should the establishment of a school of theoretical physics. I hope that, as this institute develops, it will possibly take in other subjects of more value to the ordinary human being than theoretical physics is likely to be to them. I think that we need a more human culture. I think that we could do with a lot more study of Irish subjects and a lot more study of logic, ethics, and political philosophy, and that these would be of considerably more interest and value to the people of the country as a whole than the study of theoretical physics.

There is just one other word that I would like to say, and that is to remind Senators that in this enterprise of promoting Gaelic advanced studies there has been a happy union of effort, so far as there has been an effort between the two strains of our population. It has not been left purely to us of the Gaelic strain. Over against such names as O'Donovan and O'Curry you have such names as Petrie and Stokes and Gilbert, which are not Gaelic. I should like that some attempt might be made to procure cooperation, even from the separated Six Counties of Northern Ireland, in the enterprise of reviving interest in Gaelic studies, and making the greatest possible amount of Gaelic culture available to those who are prepared to interest themselves in it.

I feel that the time is singularly inappropriate for this discussion—a time when all the things which we value most in our civilisation are in jeopardy and when our very survival is in the balance. I suppose, however, that there is something to be said for the attitude of "business as usual". Whatever may be happening in the world, learning in the long run will prevail, and if you look back on history you will find that you had a long period of the Dark Ages and that that period merged afterwards into the Renaissance. You may get that again and nobody, perhaps, can complain if, even in these times, we do keep learning and higher education and culture in our minds. I also feel that to a certain extent this discussion acts as a distraction from far less pleasant and anxious thoughts that must be in our minds to-day. When it comes to a consideration of what is proposed, however, I do feel that like certain other things in our national life, there is rather a lack of balance. I would suggest that the whole of our national economy at the moment is out of balance. The interests of our real wealth producers, those engaged in agriculture, have been sacrificed to a great extent to those of artificial manufacture.

What about the unemployment problem?

I think, Senator, that this is not relevant.

Perhaps it is not, Sir, and I am not going to pursue it, but I do feel that, as applied to learning, as applied to the expenditure of money, a lack of balance exists. If we want to spend money—and we have not much money to spend—I feel that we should first consider the claims of our applied sciences. We are singularly deficient in the standard of applied sciences. Can anybody say that our agriculture is not sadly lacking in modern technique, and would not the whole country benefit by a real earnest attempt to develop the technique of our agriculture? Can anybody say that our applied architecture is anything but deplorable, when you see the glorious traditions of architecture that this country has and then go around and look at the motley, variegated, cheap-jack character of all our modern building development? Can anybody say that the Irish language, as applied, is not in a deplorable condition? You have only to take the testimony of the people who themselves teach, the school teachers, in that regard—that is, if one is to place any value on what one hears said. Can anybody say that the standard of general education for the rising generation is as high as we should like to have it? When we have all those practical things so far below what even the most optimistic would say we require, I do feel that it is out of balance—I do not by any means say not to encourage these schemes, but to spend Government money on them in the way we propose to do.

Now, there has been a good deal said as to whether this work could not be better done and more spontaneously done by existing bodies. I heard no attempt whatever to justify the case for doing this in the way that is proposed. Surely, with far less expenditure, you could harness these great minds to the existing universities or, as Senator MacDermot said, to the Academy. I do think the Taoiseach was entirely unconvincing. I do suggest he was arguing more as an advocate of a case on a brief formed in his own mind. In those circumstances I have no doubt, if I may say so with due respect, he would fail to examine the alternatives in an attitude of detachment. If he had done so, I cannot help feeling he would have had more regard to the total unsuitability of a Government body to deal with work of the character that it is now proposed to deal with. Could anything be more antagonistic to the development of genius, to higher thought, than a Government-controlled institution? It is well known that if you want invention you never set up a Government Department. Invention comes from all kinds of unexpected quarters, from streaks of genius. I understand that the pneumatic tyre was not invented by an engineer at all; it was invented by a veterinary surgeon. I understand that nobody who knew anything about sewing would ever have invented a sewing machine where you thread the needle at the head. The very last place to get the expression of genius or to get work of genius is within the deadening influence of a Government institution. Civil servants, the Minister for Finance, minutes, files, all these things will never produce genius.

Where are they in the Bill?

Is not the Minister for Finance brought in at every stage to approve things?

He is not.

Are not the senior professors appointed under Government control?

So are the judges.

Is not the whole thing harnessed to the machinery of the State? That point has been made by several speakers before.

Made incorrectly.

The Taoiseach says: "Where is it in the Bill?" Upon the Committee Stage I will be able to point out several sections of the Bill where the principles to which I am now objecting apply. The case, to my mind, has never been made as to why this cannot be fully done by grants for existing universities.

Would the Senator be in favour of the grants if such were proposed by the House?

I am not saying what I would be in favour of. I am dealing with the measure before me. I do not know that I would oppose it if it came forward. I would have to consider it on its merits, but I think there should be some measure simpler than this. I suppose, if grants were given to the universities for the development of these studies it would be a much cheaper method. The interruption of Senator Foran does not meet the argument I am trying to make, that a Government department of this kind or a department under Government control, where the Minister for Finance is brought in to approve certain expenditure, is not the medium by which this form of special genius can develop fruitfully.

Might I ask the Senator, would the Minister for Finance not have to approve at the moment of any expenditure by a university, assuming that it got a grant?

I have not come prepared to meet a lot of alternatives but, if it were proposed, I should far rather see a capital sum handed over on conditions to an autonomous body for the furtherance of the studies that are here envisaged. That is the considered answer I should give.

In any case I think Section 9, sub-section (2), covers the point fully.

I will deal with Section 9, sub-section (2) when we come to the Committee Stage. I would like to ask this now: To what extent have these great men we have heard of in the past ever emerged from an institution of the kind now proposed? I do not profess any close knowledge of these great names, but I did read with great interest the life of Madame Curie. Was there anything in her life similar to an institute of this kind? Nothing could be more remote. Under conditions of extreme difficulty and poverty that woman of genius gave what we know to the world. Hamilton, whom we have heard of so much during this debate, was not a product of any Government institute or State money. I would like the Taoiseach, when he is replying, to say to what extent these great men in the past—and admittedly it is only great men can apply themselves to these higher studies—have been produced by the machinery of the kind that is now proposed. For the reasons I have given which, I think, are to a certain extent following the lines of other speakers who were not interrupted, I do not think that this is the right way to do it at all. It is a change in our methods of higher education and—some of you will say I am a hard-boiled Tory—I was very much interested in a certain remark— I forget who made it—which I read in a recent autobiography of John Buchan —"If a change is not necessary, it is necessary not to change."

I had no intention of intervening in the debate, but Senator Sir John Keane has, I think, advanced one of the very strongest arguments in support of the Bill.


He has told us that in the past some very great people in the world, Madame Curie, for instance, had a hard struggle and a very difficult time when they strove to better the condition of things in the world. Had they had an institute of this nature to work with, would it not have made their path far easier? The argument, so far, for and against this measure is whether it is advisable to have it run by the universities or by an outside body. Universities have their own special work. Universities, to a great extent, are engaged in teaching the younger people, to fit them for their struggle in life. This body will be devoted mainly to research work. One section will spend its time in unearthing the wealth latent in our manuscript materials. The other will be engaged in the work of physics. I think it is better that a body doing this work should be free from all distractions, and I really think that the argument is strongly in favour of the outside body. The Royal Irish Academy has done very good and useful work, but some how I think the work of the nature indicated in this Bill is not quite the work the Royal Irish Academy should be doing. I think that a body of specialists who are selected to deal with this work could do it far better than any existing body we have.

I regret that I am not in a position to take part in any of the controversies we have had here to-day. I have no knowledge as to whether a distinguished university loses face by the fact that one of its professors goes elsewhere or whether higher studies should only be provided for those who are able to support themselves or to what extent a schoolboy reads Moliere with wisdom and understanding. The text of what I have to say I got from a remark of the Taoiseach when speaking earlier to-day, as to whether or not this was a wise time at which to introduce this Bill, owing to the fact that we live in war times. We see all around us great peoples bending all their energies, mental and physical, to the destruction of each other; sacred edifices, seats of learning, whole cities, are razed to the ground while we sleep. Liberty vanishes in the night, and hundreds of beautiful young bodies, fashioned, as we believe, in the likeness of God, are torn to pieces in indescribable horror with every breath we draw.

Here, on the other hand, we are vitally conscious of the fact that there is a quickening spirit. We have only to look around the countryside to see that every place is covered with blossom. There has never been such a promise of fruit, and a renovated and replenished earth has sprung into life. For ourselves, we endeavour to encourage and foster the arts. Devout and devoted men and women are giving their money and their time to the building of churches and, in this House, we are discussing a measure to provide for higher studies. If there are any cynics in the House, I think they are at least entitled to laugh in derision, but I think the majority of us will feel that truth, justice, learning, religion and piety will remain, and it is in that belief that we are not afraid to face the future with equanimity. Equanimitas as a word sounds almost like music in this extraordinary time— that calm temper and evenness of mind, not easily elated or depressed. What a watchword for the sentinels of our country, only by the use of which can friends advance and be recognised.

But fear is creeping all over the world, like some great, damp, black cloud, intangible, amorphous and decaying. There was a great prophet, as you all know, long ago who said that darkness shall cover the earth and gross darkness the people, and I imagine that of all the different kinds of darkness he may have thought of, probably fear is the worst. I, however, regard this Bill as a little pin point of light and, though a pin point of light, a vital spark. There are many others, and there will probably be a great many more, and perhaps, happily, they may be amalgamated into a great beam, in whose rays we shall appear to the whole world to be putting on our accoutrements—not the weapons of war, but the whole armour of light.

I scarcely know where to begin. I have listened to so many things, every one of which I should have liked to have contradicted, or, at least, to have questioned, on the spot, that I am afraid, if I were to attempt to go through them, I should keep the House as long again as we have already been discussing this Bill. Despite the rigorous ruling of the Chair, a number of irrelevancies were brought into the debate. They were of the same type as the irrelevancy in the Dáil when I was told that we should be looking after the question as to whether girls had or had not compulsory mathematics, rather than dealing with a matter of this sort, as if there was any real connection between them. We are not excusing ourselves by the introduction of this Bill for any shortcomings there may be in any other department. This was brought in for a special purpose: to provide, in regard to two particular subjects, opportunities for advanced study.

I shall try to deal with those matters which appear to me to be germane and to be important for us to discuss, and I hope I shall be able to discuss them calmly, although I have very different opinions from the opinions expressed. One of the outstanding questions is that to which I referred when supporting the motion for Second Reading: why was this machinery employed rather than the machinery of the existing universities? I thought I gave, in advance, a good answer to that question. It is not that I had not considered these matters. I had considered them, and I had for many a day considered the problem that I knew arose in the National University, when students, who showed great promise in Celtic studies, got travelling scholarships, and then had to turn away and devote themselves to a calling in order to earn their bread, which is fundamental in this matter, with resultant loss to the particular line of activity which, so far as we could judge by the promise they gave, would have been most in acordance with their own abilities and probably their own desires, and loss to the nation as a whole.

I thought of that for a long time and I asked myself: How are we going to get a remedy? We wanted to keep some of these scholars because there was obvious work for them to do. A mere studentship for a year or two only appeared to lead them into a cul de sac. There seemed to be no way of advance from it, and I asked myself, time after time, if there was any better way in which we could benefit the nation and advance Celtic studies than mere travelling studentships. I said that one thing was obvious. There were dictionaries which have to be compiled not by a single individual but by a group, a team. There were grammars which had to be prepared and which obviously could not be prepared in any reasonable time by one man, and, in fact, at present, as the foundation for a proper grammatical study, it is necessary to make a thorough study of two or three dialects and when this is done thoroughly, you are then in a position to get a synthesis of the lot. That work is heavy work, and there are men who should have been trained and kept for it, but, instead, they were allowed to go away and the work was being done in a way which involved a long period of years when time was pressing. There was a body of manuscript material which had to be worked through. I do not think I said that every part of that manuscript material contained treasures. I did not pretend to have knowledge of that. I said there was a mass of material which I believed, if worked through properly, would be of great advantage to the living language, apart altogether from the by-products which would be gained in the study of it by way of fresh knowledge of our past social conditions and history. The only way I saw then of helping this particular study, and of providing a substitute for scholarships and studentships, was to try to provide a career for such people or, if you like, a means of existence or livelihood, which would mean, if they were properly selected that they would be assured this livelihood, that other people would engage in the work and that we would have a greater selection for it.

I have been, as I said, for a great number of years thinking about the matter, and I have come to that conclusion. In connection with Dunsink, I had also been considering the question whether that great shrine—in a sense the home from which Irish science and ability was made known by one whose name is likely to last, and as time goes on, become better known and respected throughout the world—could be saved for the nation when the observatory, as a part of Trinity College, was closed down. There are reasons why our particular country is not the best place for observational astronomy and, as I was thinking of that, there arose the question of geophysics, and the need for magnetic surveys was brought to my attention at the same time. As I was considering these matters, I got from a member of the academy—I am not sure whether he is or is not associated with Irish studies—a memorandum running on the same lines as my own mind had been working upon, on the need for some system besides mere temporary scholarships by which you could give advanced students the opportunity of continuing their lifework of study and research. I indicated my sympathy with the ideas that were expressed. I am not sure whether it was arising out of that or otherwise that I had got a very full analysis of the position regarding Irish studies from the Committee of Irish Studies of the academy, in which they suggested the formation of a separate institution. Surely these people ought to know whether the academy is better fitted to do this special work than a person who comes along in a casual way to express an opinion on the matter!

I think some of them have repented since.

That has about the same foundation as the original statement. None of them have come to me and said they repented since.

I hope the Taoiseach will not think I have invented that.

No, but it is taking up some phrase that somebody else used and passing it on. We are talking about serious things and if we are to have opinions, let us have considered opinions and not repeat parrot-like what someone else said.

I have not repeated anything parrot-like.

At any rate no member of that committee has come to me and said they did not want that Bill.

They have not very easy access.

Very easy. I am probably the easiest Minister in the whole Government to see. I have never been asked and most of them know where to find me.

I would be prepared to guarantee to the Taoiseach that the vast majority of the committee would be opposed to the combination of Irish studies and theoretical physics in the same Bill.

That is another matter.

It is a vital matter.

The Taoiseach must be allowed to proceed without interruption.

We will see. In two directions I was being asked to get the Government to take action and I saw it was quite possible to combine the two ideas. Instead of bringing in two separate and distinct Bills and giving the impression that there was going to be a fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh Bill, as Senator Counihan and Senator Sir John Keane, who were thinking like that, suggested, I said we will go on with this Bill—it lays the foundation and it indicates a general principle. If there are any other demands at any time, or, if it is thought desirable in the national interest to add other schools, the general framework is provided in the Bill.

As I said, I know something about the universities and the work of the universities. I am not talking about something I do not know anything about. I know from my own connection with it and because a number of my children have passed through it like those of Cú Uladh. We have not been living altogether in the moon. We know what is the general type of work that is being done and what it is possible to do in the universities, and we know that the great majority of the students who go to the university are not like those whom Cardinal Newman had in mind who are able to go to Oxford and Cambridge, and who are leisurely and wealthy people in a position to approach their studies from mere love of the things in them, without any idea of using them, except in so far as they add to their own particular culture. Thus, they could be approached purely and simply from the cultural point of view.

I am very doubtful if, historically even, that was the foundation of the universities. At any rate, whether we are reverting to something that was originally the foundation of some of the universities or not, we come up against the question of the learned professions. I think the foundations of the universities were associated very largely with the learned professions. I do not pretend for the moment that I have made a deep study, but from occasional reading one does get the impression that originally the universities were professional schools just as the modern universities have very largely to be professional schools, but the fact is that in our universities at present, excepting those particularly fortunate in having brains as well as means, the students have to think when they come to the universities of a career, and that they cannot live in them for a prolonged period. They know that if they want to live as ordinary human beings, there is a limit to the time they can spend and in that time they have to go through a certain amount of routine preparation for whatever calling or profession in life that they intend to enter on. In doing that, there is a certain amount of strain and stress, notwithstanding anything that Senator Hayes may say, on any student who wants to become properly equipped to be able to enter into the foremost ranks of his profession with the amount of knowledge that has to be acquired in a relatively short time. In some universities some of the professors have not to work as hard as others.

Hear, hear; that is the point.

That is true, and there is no suggestion here that the professors should not continue, in any time they have, to do the research work in which they are interested. I cannot imagine a professor worth his salt who does not give a considerable period of his time to what might be called, in a general way, research. There is no suggestion in this Bill that research is not to continue to be one of the functions of a professor in the universities. This Bill is for one purpose only—to afford something over and above what is possible in the way of research under ordinary university conditions. We are simply using the State to supply funds, much as a rich private individual would provide funds for a special purpose. We have selected these particular things because we think they are of national value. Regarding the question of whether these two things should be linked together, what is the link?

External association.

In any case, the school of Celtic studies is independent, in the sense that it will get an independent grant and that it can govern itself without reference to the central body, which is only the administrative body for the payment of salaries, and so on. The central body is to save the school from the ordinary burden of looking after buildings and things of that sort. The school sends in an application to the council and, if the council does not do what it wants, there is an appeal to the Minister. It has separate funds which cannot be touched by the other school. If anybody can suggest more independence without breaking these up into separate schools, devoid of any connecting scheme, I would be prepared to consider any amendment to that end. The school of Celtic studies is autonomous in reality, so far as the council of the institute is concerned. The Minister who will be associated with it is the Minister for Education and, presumably, he will be interested in seeing that it is a success. He will be the intermediary by which the Government will be approached for any funds which may be necessary. It is not, therefore, a question of "the dead hand of finance"; it is the living support which I hope every Minister for Education will give to it as long as a reasonable case can be put up for support.

It is right that, in certain connections, the Minister for Finance should have something to say. His concurrence is required in regard to certain things. If money is to be given over to an institution, it can be done by giving over a sum and leaving it to them to use it as they will. That is one way and I have thought about it and would consider it as an alternative if it were feasible. It is not feasible, however, to give a sum here at once to the institute, as the exact amount —or anything like an idea of it—cannot be anticipated at the moment. We can only give a very rough guess. At some future time the Government may, if they think fit, make an arrangement with the council to pay, as they are paying the universities at the present time, a definite fixed sum per year instead of giving an annual sum.

The Minister said the money would be distributed separately to each school. Is that explicit in the Bill?

I think so.

It is a rather important point.

It is. That is why I mentioned the Gaelic League having a wrong idea about the central body. The council is the least important part of the mechanism here, and there is no use in suggesting that it is the most important. The important bodies are the governing bodies of the schools. The other is a co-ordinating body, to relieve them for the most part of financial and other questions in regard to buildings and things of that sort. It brings in a unifying principle. The driving force, the direction and the control of these schools is intended to be vested and to reside in the schools themselves. If there is anything in the Bill which appears to indicate the contrary, I shall examine it with care and, if it can be remedied and improved in order to make that principle certain, I shall be only too glad to do it, as that is the line which I have in mind.

With regard to the suggestion made by Senator Tierney, that the control is being left to the civil servants, I wish to point out that I have always acted with the idea of making the schools as completely autonomous as possible. There is the idea of giving a grant and not interfering any more with what salaries should be paid to professors, how many there should be, what number of workers there should be and what work should be done. I consider that one could not give an idea at the moment as to what would be a reasonable and proper sum. In this particular case, it is better to work quietly at the start, to feel our way and let us see exactly what we do want. At no point should we take anybody— either as senior professor, assistant or helper—who is not first-class or promising to be first-class. If any other principle is allowed to come in, I, for one, would rather—and I believe everyone else interested in the advancement of Celtic studies would rather—that this school be not set up at all.

Who is to be the judge as to whether a professor is first-class or not?

The governing body will judge that, except in the case of the senior professors. The Government must see that men of outstanding reputation are chosen, or they will have failed in their obvious duty. Once it has been established, the Government of the day will have to look after it. Then there will be a consultative body, namely, the schools themselves, to make suggestions. When an institution of this sort has been set up, I hold that no Government is likely to ignore the representations which may be made by such bodies.

With regard to the position of the Minister for Finance under the Bill, I have tried to eliminate him in every possible way except where he has an obvious function. For example, before he provides in his Budget for a sum of money, he will have to have some idea as to the purpose to which it will be applied. If anybody can show, on the Committee Stage of the Bill, how we can eliminate him from any particular place where he may appear to have a control which would affect the efficiency of the school, I shall be quite prepared to meet the point with an open mind. That is one of the most general criticisms—that this institute has been set up as if it were a Government Department with civil servants in control. Even the registrar-bursar is not appointed by the Government. The registrar-bursar, I think, is appointed by the council so that there is no Government, Civil Service or bureaucratic control over this institution except in one way, that the Minister for Education in one or two places is a sort of referee. In other cases, he is the individual by whom the needs of the schools of the institute are brought before the Government in the most direct possible way.

Now with regard to the functions of the schools, and the advisability of connecting the two, I do not want to deny that they could have been set up separately, but I think that there would be economy in administration by setting up the two together and having them linked in the way I am suggesting. With regard to the work of the school of Celtic studies, there are really two sides to this work. One side has reference to this question of the editing and the preparation of all these manuscripts. I hope they will take the cream to start with, but they will have to go through this mass of Irish material under learned direction. That is research that can be organised. It is not like waiting for a Madame Curie. It is work that can be definitely organised and got through in a reasonable time if you get proper helpers. That is one side.

There is another side which I might call the teaching side. Suppose you have advanced students coming along who want to get a better knowledge of the older forms, or the middle forms, of the language, for instance, students who will be studying the forms of the language in middle Irish or early modern Irish, there will be the teaching of such advanced students to be considered. I am not suggesting that their teaching would be carried on on the same lines, for instance, as the teaching of students going for a degree in the university. It will obviously be of a very different type and character but it will be teaching, nevertheless. There may be a question of making special researches in any particular direction that would suggest itself to the men who were occupied either in the teaching work of the advanced students or in the preparation of manuscripts. You have nothing in the theoretical physics line to compare with that except in so far as the organised side of research is concerned.

In the theoretical physics side there is the big task of getting together, looking through and generally examining what has been done in the particular subjects with which the school is intended to deal. That is not an easy task—to look through and see in what direction advances could be made, to draw attention to new discoveries and to new ideas that have been evolved. There is a certain amount of organised work that can be done there. I referred already to the bureau of information. That is part of the work that can be organised. I am assured by people who are trying to keep themselves abreast of modern advances in theoretical physics that there is a great need for anybody who wants to do research work of a valuable type, to keep in touch with modern developments. It is all nonsense to think that advances have always been made simply by a completely distinct and separate series of efforts. That is not so. It is curious that there appears at particular times a galaxy of men of ability. Things may have been moving in particular directions and a number of men then work side by side, one helping the other. In the school of theoretical physics you have that study which it is possible to organise, namely, to keep in touch with advances that are being made and to make information about them as readily available as is possible. That is associated with the library, publications and so on. In addition to that you have the teaching side. The teaching side of the theoretical physics school is, therefore, very closely associated in idea with the work that will be done in the school of Celtic studies.

It is surprising to hear people talk of theoretical physics as if it were a subject of no practical value at all. As a matter of fact, experimental physics has advanced, side by side, at least in later times, with theoretical physics. Mathematical instruments have been forged which enable people to keep ahead of the experimentalists and to indicate to the experimentalists the particular line on which they are to go. If you have a school like the theoretical physics school, the experiments that are carried out in Chicago, and the observations that are made in Wilson Observatory are made available, through publications and in other ways, for examination and investigation. Just as Kelper took the observations of Tycho Brahe and tried to get some central principles, Newton took the relatively empirical lines of Kepler and got what might be called a mathematical synthesis. Einstein came along——

And upset everybody else.

Well, that is not finished yet. The point here is that our people can through the school of theoretical physics become either Keplers, Newtons or Tycho Brahes. That is what we are aiming at. I should like to say that my belief is that the genius of our people is such as would enable them to become foremost in that particular line. That has been proved in the past. Men like Hamilton —I forget the name of his correspondents in Britain—came to the conclusion that the genius of the Irish people was far superior in that line to that of many others. It was said by Hamilton, and by men who had a long experience of the Royal Society in England, that there was a peculiar suitability in Irish genius for the more abstract speculations which are involved in mathematical physics and pure mathematics. It is nonsense, however, to say that these are purely idle studies and that they have no practical bearing. As a matter of fact, they have the most important and intense bearing because, as I said, these are the synthesis of the experimental work that can be done by others.

Now, I do believe that it is quite within our power to have here the foremost school of mathematical physics or theoretical physics in the world. If we succeed in getting men such as these three men whom I originally had hoped to get—and, mind you, there are more fish in the sea than those that have been caught yet—if we get here the right people, then we can have here a centre to which students from abroad will come. I think it was Senator Tierney who said that he would not like to see our students all remain at home without travelling to other centres of learning. I agree with him. I think it is a very good thing that they should travel abroad, but there are other countries, such as the United States, and even Great Britain, near as it is, where they would have the very same views and where they would think that it would be a benefit to their own countries if their students should came and visit these countries where there were famous men teaching, get inspiration from these men, learn from them, and then go back to enrich learning in their own countries. I hope that we will have here a centre for travelling students just as Edinburgh has been for some time a centre to which our students went from the National University. Some of our students went to Edinburgh, some to Paris, and some to universities in Germany such as Bonn and so on. We want, at least, to do our part in the world and to get these students from abroad, and there is nothing in this Bill which prevents you from attracting them by any means that are considered proper, and nothing in the Bill to prevent you in any way from helping students here at home or from getting any assistance of any kind for the advancement of the particular branches of studies which are to be dealt with by these two schools.

I hold, therefore, that there is a similarity between the two. I believe that the link between them is very elastic. There is nothing rigid about it, and I am convinced that it is a mistake to find fault with the Bill simply on the grounds that you have got associated with the school of Celtic studies a school for the advancement of mathematical physics. It is the most suitable branch of science and, in my opinion, it is the best way in which a small nation can bring itself into the foreground of physical research because, I say again, advances are made not merely by those who go into the laboratory and perform experiments there, or those who observe the heavens under better conditions than we could observe them here, but also by the patient scholar who goes over the work of these other men and tries to synthesize it or at least get a complete picture of it and reduce it to some simpler conception or, as it is very often called, some simpler law. I am anxious, from different points of view, to see both schools founded, and all I can say is this—and it is the result of a conviction of one who is anxious that they should succeed and wants to put no obstacle in the way—my belief is that, if they do not succeed, it will not be because of the machinery here —machinery which can be changed if at any particular time it is found in any way to curb the activities of the schools—but it will be because we have not got just the men who have the enthusiasm and the learning and men who can inspire others with their enthusiasm, such as the men I have mentioned here to-day when I spoke of people like Hamilton, O'Curry, O'Donovan, Petrie, and others. If we fail in that, then let us close the schools. You can do that if you want to do so, but if we do get men who can inspire in the way I have mentioned, then I am perfectly certain that there is no money that could be spent in this country which would be so valuable from the national point of view.

I agree with Senator Sir John Keane and other Senators that we are a small country and that we have to watch our expenditure, but we are spending £5,000,000 already on education and in providing culture for our people and trying to equip them so that in life they will be able to have as high a standard of culture—I cannot get a better word at the moment—as other people. I am not going to say, and I do not pretend for one moment, that I am satisfied with education in the country at the moment. That is why I objected to having my conversation outside the House, on my way here, reported in a form which gave a completely wrong impression. I do not say at all that it was deliberate, but I was annoyed that a casual conversation should be repeated, putting me as saying something that I did not want to say and that would quite misrepresent my view. As I say, I do not want to pretend that I am satisfied with education in the country. I do not think anybody ever will be satisfied with the educational system, because we will always naturally want more out of it than we are getting out of it, and it is right that we should want more. I am not satisfied. I do not want to prejudge the question of whether the method of teaching Irish at the moment is the best possible method, and I am quite prepared to have that examined. Now, in saying that, I am not agreeing to set up a commission or anything of that sort, but as a matter of fact the reason I was speaking to the Senator in question was that when the national school teachers were meeting at their conference they said certain things, and the Senator seemed to be taking everything they said as gospel. Now, I should like to say that the national teachers, when they have their meetings, can talk just as much nonsense as Senators can.

Or Ministers.

Yes, just as much nonsense as members of the Government, if you want to put it on an equal plane. We all know that people at such meetings, no matter how careful they may be, may speak without reflection and say things which fundamentally are nonsense. I am not going to take any statements that were made at a teachers' conference as being conclusive by any means. I agree, of course, that people who are engaged in the work of teaching ought to know more about it than people who are not engaged in that work, but at conferences very often the people who go there want to find fault and to make complaints. I see some of the Labour members smiling at me, and I am sure that at their congresses and conferences they find the same thing happening. If we want to get down to bedrock and have this thing examined fairly and squarely, as I should like, we may find, as I found, that a very good standard has been reached. When I went into the Department of Education I had heard a lot of this criticism about Irish, and I thought I would visit a few schools myself. Now, I admit that I was conducted, and perhaps I may find it possible to visit some schools where I will not be conducted, but I must admit that I went through a number of schools recently and, as one who approached the matter with considerable doubt, in view of the things I had been told, I was delighted to find the standard that had been reached in Irish. What I should like to see—and this is not popular with teachers, but I will say it all the same, even though I am afraid I am digressing—is a leaving examination at the end of the primary course. I think that there ought to be a minimum standard which we would expect in the various subjects, that it is necessary and desirable that there should be a certain minimum standard reached, and that the examination ought to be such that 90 per cent. of the pupils who do their work, if they do it and are taught reasonably, should pass that examination. I think it is desirable that there should be such an examination. I know examinations have their faults and I know that they give proof of the work that is done in a school from one angle only. I am not suggesting that they will test other things—there may be far more valuable things than you can test by examination—but there is a certain minimum amount of knowledge which we ought to expect pupils who have worked up to the sixth class, say, in a national school, to have when they are leaving it and we would know where to start with those of them who would pass on to the secondary school. Similarly, if I had my way, before they would be allowed into universities they would have a standard equivalent to the standard of the leaving certificate.

Is not that so at present?

No, not quite. That is not the position at the moment. They can, if they have got through the leaving certificate, get into the universities but I think the converse is not true. People can get into the university who are not able to pass or who have not reached the standard of the leaving certificate. I know that when you are getting them into the secondary schools it is only fair that they should have reached a certain standard and similarly in the universities. I am afraid that the ideas that were suggested here—with which I disagree— lead me into another matter, my statement with regard to what the universities do. I have never said that universities do not give a culture as part of their province whilst they are preparing students for the particular professions, that there is not a certain amount of culture given at the same time and that the students do not get a certain inspiration and desire for learning. I believe they do but I want to say that you cannot depend on the universities as those who read Newman think you can depend upon them. You cannot, because, again, the stress is too great. On the occasion on which I spoke I wanted to lay stress on the fact that where we get education in its most liberal form is in the secondary schools and that we have to get it there if we want to have education of the really liberal type. May I say that they are beginning there to look ahead and to specialise too and while there is a certain amount of pressure, I think the pressure is nothing like the pressure you will have in the universities, where the student says: "I have four or five years to get through my examinations. After that time my parents will be no longer able to support me. I will have to support myself and I must qualify for my profession as quickly as possible." I think that particular idea enters very strongly in the university and that it dominates the life of the students while they are there unless they are the children of wealthy parents who can afford to face life differently.

In the secondary schools, of course, you have also to face the possibility of pressure, but I think that I was right in saying that for general culture, particularly if you want it to affect the life of our people as a whole, we will have to depend very largely on the secondary schools to give it to us. Remember, I am not thinking for a moment of a mere preparation for a profession. I do not want to pretend that you cannot have liberal education while that is being done. I believe an apprentice to an educated carpenter can become an educated man. If the carpenter does his work in the right way he can give a liberal education even while he is doing his work. It depends upon whether he himself has the right spirit and the right mind and the right soul. I do not want to pretend for a moment that in a fundamental sense, not perhaps in the traditional sense, a liberal education cannot be given. I believe it can be given, in the best sense, by a carpenter to his apprentice. But these would be the exceptions. We have got to consider how we are to try to make that education available for large numbers. That brings me to this question, that research is not a thing that can be directed. That is not the experience of the world at all. Our geniuses are much too rare, and if we had to wait until the exceptional genius turned up the world would not have made the progress that it has made. These geniuses at times give certain direction. They do a tremendous lot of work themselves but the sum of human knowledge, the advance that has been made in human knowledge, cannot be measured simply by adding together all that these geniuses have done. Great advance has been made by the organisation of knowledge. The marvel to me has always been how, considering the shortness of human life, it is possible to make the advance that we have made. It has been made principally because we have this method of organising it. Through publications and otherwise we organise it in that form and you are organising it through these great institutions.

The subject, as I said, is frightfully wide and all the topics that were dealt with were such that would lead one to talk for weeks on it. I only want to assure the Senators that, first of all, the linking up of the two was not done without thought, that the objections which have been raised here were in my mind and that I tried to meet these objections as far as I could. I believe that it is wise to link them. I wanted financial control to be as light as possible and I do not think that it is heavier than is necessary. If there is any way in which the fundamental need of providing the cash and giving reason for its expenditure can be secured without the provisions of the Bill, I am quite prepared to meet it. Although I do not agree with the arguments, I cannot say that I have not been satisfied with the way, on the whole, in which the Bill has been received. I think it has been well received and I do want to say that, naturally, I have a lot of other things I should be dealing with, and I would not have chosen either to-day or this particular time for the Second Reading of this Bill, but I felt that, no matter what pressing things there may be to do, as long as this work was undertaken, it was good national work. I think we should not simply let it pass by because of the present circumstances. Therefore, I hope that the Seanad will give us the Second Reading. I would like to get the Bill through because until it is through there will be a certain amount of concern about it and I would like to have it off my mind to take on other things, but if anybody thinks he can improve this between, say, now and next week, I would be prepared to leave it over for a week although I think it has been discussed fairly fully in the Dáil. We have tried to make all the amendments and I would like to get it through as quickly as possible. Of course, that is a matter I would leave to the Seanad.

Does that mean that the Taoiseach would like the Committee Stage to-morrow?

As soon as possible.

Question put and declared carried.


Will the Senators challenging a division stand in their places?

Senators Crosbie and Counihan rose.

The names of the Senators will be recorded as dissenting. When is it proposed to take the Committee Stage?

I think most of us would like to assist in every way we could, but I know I would have made certain other criticisms which, I think, would lessen the public debate each year and it would not be possible to have the amendments handed in by to-morrow. It is not a question of trying to delay it. For that reason, I would much prefer to take the Committee Stage next week. I do not know whether that would be acceptable.

That is a matter for the Seanad. Naturally, I do not want to urge this thing. I would like to have it as much an agreed measure as possible.

I strongly oppose taking the Committee Stage to-morrow. This measure cannot be urgent and, as a matter of Parliamentary practice, we ought to take time to consider it, even if we do not have any amendments.

I suggest this day week, or the first day of sitting next week, as we may sit on Tuesday.

It is not a matter of curtailing time, but I have a number of other things to attend to, and I should like to get this off my mind.

Committee Stage ordered for Wednesday, 22nd May, or Tuesday, 21st May, if the House should sit on that day.