chapter  6
22 Pages


In 1754 the Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce in Great Britain was founded, and in 1851, largely through the patronage of its President, Prince Albert, it helped to establish the Great Exhibition. Whilst this was acclaimed as a success for Britain and her industrial developments, on the more technical and scientific side it was clear that Europe was ahead. The lesson was, however, being learned slowly. In 1848 Cambridge University established a Natural Science Tripos; in 1853 the Oxford Honour School of Natural Science was founded, and six years later, in 1859, London University created a new facultythat of Science. New departments were also being set up in order to encourage more education in science for people generally. The Science and Art Department was formed in 1853 and in 1856 became associated with the Education Department. The Literary and Mechanics' Institutes had also been developing since the turn of the century when Birkbeck left Glasgow to work in London, where he founded a Mechanics' Institute in 1823.