It would naturally be supposed that those members of our faculty, if there be any, who favor the substitution of modern languages for Greek in the scheme of education would see to it that the instruction at Harvard in their favorite subjects be of the highest quality. We do not wish to criticize the quality of the instruction or the efficiency of the instructors in the German department, but we should like to call attention to the vacancy that still exists at its head. This department has been especially unfortunate in this respect. The professorship, if we mistake not, was established in 1830, and was first held by Charles Follen. It became vacant in 1835, and from that time until 1872, the date of the appointment of Dr. Hedge, the German department lacked a head. Dr. Hedge resigned in 1881, and the attempts made to fill his place have been as yet very unsuccessful. A department without a head can hardly be a success, and we are afraid the department in question is hardly an exception. The supporters of modern languages at Harvard should see to it that they have something to offer in place of the instruction they wish to do away with. A comparison between our Greek and German departments could hardly assist the self-called "party of progress," and we are afraid this hold is true to a large extent in the schools.
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