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The Aberdeen University Review


The Aberdeen University Review was a magazine about the University of Aberdeen in Scotland.

Publication History
The Aberdeen University Review began in 1913. No issue or contribution copyright renewals were found for this serial. It continued into the 21st century, though it does not appear to be published today.

  • 1913-1926: HathiTrust has volumes 1-13 freely readable online.
    Access may be restricted outside the United States.
  • 1913-1914: The Internet Archive has volume 1.
  • 1914-1915: The Internet Archive has volume 2.
  • 1915-1916: The Internet Archive has volume 3.
  • 1916-1917: The Internet Archive has volume 4.
  • 1917-1918: The Internet Archive has volume 5.
  • 1919-1920: The Internet Archive has volume 7.
  • 1920-1921: The Internet Archive has volume 8.
  • 1921-1922: The Internet Archive has volume 9.

THE proposal to found an Aberdeen University Magazine or Review was brought before the General Council in April, 1912, and was remitted to the Business Committee of the Council for consideration. On this Committee’s report the Council, in October of the same year, appointed a special Committee with powers to prepare estimates and a prospectus; to submit them to the University

Court; and to send them with a form of subscription to each member of the Council. The Court and the Senatus gave their general approval to the scheme prepared by the Committee, and ultimately no fewer than 950 promises of subscription were received from graduates and alumni of the University. A Committee of Management was formed, consisting of six members elected by the University Court, six by the Senatus, and twelve by the General Council, along with the President of the Students’ Representative Council, and five other persons co-opted by the Committee. The Principal is Chairman, Mr. Charles Macgregor, Secretary, and Mr. James W. Garden, Treasurer. The more important offices of convener of the Editorial Sub-Committee and of the Business Sub-Committee have been entrusted to Mr. Alexander Mackie and Mr. W. Stewart Thomson. Mr. Mackie will be assisted by Mr. Robert Anderson and Mr. W. Keith Leask. The other members of his committee are Professors Grierson, Arthur Thomson and Baillie; Mr. P. J. Anderson, Mr. Stewart Thomson, and Miss Williamina Rait.

Such have been the deliberate and careful origins of The ABERDEEN University Review, the first number of which is now submitted to the subscribers. The intention is to publish three numbers Scottish sisters, a great increase of resources, and this not too soon to meet the rapidly multiplying needs and opportunities of the intellectual life of our time: the division of old sciences and the rise of new ones, as well as the demands for efficient training in the material and moral problems of civilisation, which are made by men and women engaged in commerce and industry and the public services. New questions of academic policy have arisen not only with regard to the proper allocation of those additional funds, but also concerning the conditions on which they are granted, and the relations in which they involve the Universities with the State (or its Departments), and with other bodies charged with their disbursement. In all this there is much matter for our Review ; and efforts will be made to state with justice and intelligence the complex problems of policy which it raises.

But the main business of the Review must be to keep the graduates of the University informed of her activities in education and research. How necessary such regular information is, how swiftly a University in this century grows away from the knowledge of her own alumni, who have left her to work at a distance, may be appreciated from the following comparison. Twenty years ago, in 1892-3, there were on the regular teaching staff twenty-two professors, five lecturers, and sixteen assistants to professors: in all forty-three. Now there are twenty-five professors and thirty-three lecturers, of whom twelve, along with thirty-one others, are assistants to professors. Then there were nine external examiners, now there are thirty-one. Between 1890 and 1900, the average number of students was 830, while last session there were 1042 (724 men and 318 women); the highest annual roll in the history of the University, though whether such a number can be maintained in face of the volume of emigration from the North and North-east of Scotland is very doubtful. Within the last few years there have been new Ordinances in Arts, Law and Medicine, the degree of LL.B, has been founded, and for the former system of class fees Inclusive Fees have been substituted for courses leading to degrees in Arts, Pure Science, Law and Medicine. A new block of buildings, with eleven rooms for English, History, French and German, has been erected at King’s College; and the Carnegie Trust has allocated enough of its next Quinquennial Grant to the University for a large extension of the Library at King’s, and the erection of an Examination Hall. We hope to give from time to time reports of all these and other changes and expansions in the equipment, the teaching and the discipline of the University, as well as of their educational and financial results.

We shall be happy if, in addition to the record of such facts and opinions, we are able to reinforce through the REVIEW—whether by prose or verse—those impulses, immeasurable by statistics and independent of curricula and degrees, by which the atmosphere and associations of our University have moulded the character of her students. Her graduates, scattered over the world, number now over 5000. annually, one during each of the three terms into which the academic year is now divided.

The Review is not to be regarded as the official organ of the University. But the constitution of the Committee of Management, and the support of all the governing bodies of the University, ensure that it shall be representative of our academic life in every direction. The contents will comprise summary records of the proceedings of the Court, the Senatus and the Council, with notices of all educational and administrative changes, as well as of new grants, gifts and bequests; detailed accounts of the various departments and curricula, with reports of special studies and researches ; abstracts of notable papers and lectures ; studies in the history of the University; biographies and bibliographies; occasional reports from other Universities ; correspondence on University questions ; and articles on letters, philosophy, science and education.

These contents are proper to every University Review. We shall endeavour besides to inspire our own with the memories, the atmosphere and the genius which are peculiar to Aberdeen. Our University has a history second to no other of the land in the weight of its traditions and the brilliant variety of its examples. Her founders planned her on more liberal lines than any other Scottish school of the time, and if the realisation of their ideals was delayed for centuries by the comparative scantiness of her resources, she found a moral compensation for this in the close touch which she has always maintained with the popular life about her, and in those energies and habits of hard work, which were fostered alike by the poverty of her students, and by the invigorating climate in which she is set. We are not more proud of the eminent benefactors who have judged our University worthy of the use of their wealth, than we are of the longer list of humble men and women whose devotion to her of the thrift of their laborious and unselfish lives has been by far the noblest tribute to her power and will to serve the common people of this part of the Kingdom. How she has discharged her trust is to be measured by that unceasing supply of recruits whom she has trained for the services of the commonwealth and empire, and by the large proportion of these who, from the lowliest origins, have risen by the help of her hand to the first places in their professions: who have governed provinces, administered the national justice and led armies, who have explored new territories and widened the boundaries of science, who have been leaders in the practice of medicine and surgery, who have been pioneers in education and founders or presidents of colleges and universities, or who have influenced philosophy and inspired religion. Part of the duty of our REVIEW is to repeat to the hearts of the present ranks of the University some of this strenuous music of her past.

Recent years have brought to the University of Aberdeen, as to her Wheresoever they be, may these pages bring back to them something of her northern air, and of the sound of her open sea and her rivers; and fortify them in that affectionate loyalty to herself and to one another which has always distinguished the sons of King’s and of Marischal. Floreat Alma Mater, Floreant Filii!

GEORGE ADAM SMITH.


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