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The History of Harvard's Commencement, Explained

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The introduction of the electric light in a building so near to the college grounds as the University Press on Brattle square suggests the possibility of an arrangement between the owners of the machine used for lighting this building and the college authorities, whereby the light could be introduced into the college library and perhaps into the yard. It may be urged that its use for lighting the yard would bring the quiet retirement of the latter into the rude glare of publicity. The still air of delightful studies would be tainted with this poison. Perhaps this may be true; yet the irrepressible conflict between the electric light and the midnight oil is not to be avoided even at Harvard. The use of this light in the library certainly is not open to this objection.

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