Oxford University's Old Mortality Society a Study in Victorian Romanticism
|Author: ||Monsman, Gerald|
This study examines the views and conflicts of Queen Victoria's 'Age of Empire' concerning nature and society, the arts, personal identity and vocation, from the fresh perspective of educational practice, through scrutiny of an elite, organized group of Oxford University undergraduates who later pursued diverse professions in law and government, higher education and literature. Between 1856-1866 this essay society, call the Old Mortality, gained substantial renown within Oxford circles. This is the first book-length study on this group, whose membership included A. C. Swinburne, Walter Pater, A. V. Dicey, James Bryce, T. G. Green, J. A. Symonds, Edward Caird, S. P. Ilbert, and numerous other soon-to-be-eminent Victorians.
“In addition to providing a comprehensive history of the Society, its aims and achievements, Oxford University’s Old Mortality Society implicitly examines how Renaissance and Romantic notions of education, empirical and imaginative, came to be expressed at Oxford during Victoria’s reign. . . . delve[s] into lesser-known educational principles formulated by an elite, focused group of Oxford undergraduates who later distinguished themselves in the arts, higher education, law, and government.” – English Literature in Transition
". . . a valuable contribution to late 19th-century literary studies. Beyond its undoubted historical and scholarly importance it will have an intrinsic interest and reader appeal comparable to that enjoyed by books devoted to the 'Apostles'." - Gordon Epperson
Table of Contents
Table of Contents
Preface, Acknowledgments, Introduction
1. John Nichol and the Old Mortals
2. History and Rules
3. Undergraduate Papers
5. Oxford Renown
6. "Ultra Liberals"
7. "Old Mortality at Pater's"
8. "Diaphaneitè" and the Gemlike Flame
Bibliography and Index