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Alexandria and her Schools - Charles Kingsley

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I should not have presumed to choose for any lectures of mine such a
subject as that which I have tried to treat in this book.  The subject
was chosen by the Institution where the lectures were delivered.  Still
less should I have presumed to print them of my own accord, knowing how
fragmentary and crude they are.  They were printed at the special
request of my audience.  Least of all, perhaps, ought I to have presumed
to publish them, as I have done, at Cambridge, where any inaccuracy or
sciolism (and that such defects exist in these pages, I cannot but fear)
would be instantly detected, and severely censured:  but nevertheless,
it seemed to me that Cambridge was the fittest place in which they could
see the light, because to Cambridge I mainly owe what little right
method or sound thought may be found in them, or indeed, in anything
which I have ever written.  In the heyday of youthful greediness and
ambition, when the mind, dazzled by the vastness and variety of the
universe, must needs know everything, or rather know about everything,
at once and on the spot, too many are apt, as I have been in past years,
to complain of Cambridge studies as too dry and narrow:  but as time
teaches the student, year by year, what is really required for an
understanding of the objects with which he meets, he begins to find that
his University, in as far as he has really received her teaching into
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