The Idea of a University

Theology is loyal to the past, Physics has visions of the future. Such they are, I repeat, and such their respective methods of inquiry, from the nature of the case.

But minds habituated to either of these two methods can hardly help extending it beyond its due limits, unless they are put upon their guard, and have great command of themselves. It cannot be denied that divines have from time to time been much inclined to give a traditional, logical shape to sciences which do not admit of any such treatment. Nor can it be denied, on the other hand, that men of science often show a special irritation at theologians for going by antiquity, precedent, authority, and logic, and for declining to introduce Bacon or Niebuhr into their own school, or to apply some new experimental and critical process for the improvement of that which has been given once for all from above. Hence the mutual jealousy of the two parties; and I shall now attempt to give instances of it.


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