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A History of Spain by Charles E. Chapman

But the king proceeded to make reforms


only some five hundred setting

forth the current doctrines of other countries; and many professorships had become sinecures for indigent nobles. The reformers were eager to overcome these evils, and took the course which seemed most natural in their day, that of bringing the universities under royal control so that the benevolent state might introduce the desired changes. In 1769 Charles III appointed a director for each university, to whom the life of the particular institution was to be subject; later in the same year he gave orders for a new and better plan of studies; in 1770 a censor was added to each university by royal appointment, with the duty of watching over the program of studies and assuring himself of the correctness of the religious and political views (favoring absolutism) of prospective graduates, and at the same time the universities were asked to suggest further reforms. Most of them delayed their replies as long as possible, for the greater number of the university officers were opposed to change, but the king proceeded to make reforms, nevertheless. Between 1771 and 1787 the greater universities were subjected to such revisions of their former methods as the following: the presentation of new courses and the amplification of old ones; the provision of a better opportunity to win professorships by merit; the introduction of new texts; changes in the methods of obtaining degrees; and the virtual appointment of the rector, or president, by the _Consejo_. Godoy and Jovellanos in the next reign
carried on the reforming spirit of the ministers of Charles III. In all of these reforms attempts were made to better the methods of teaching as well as the programs of study. Thus, in 1774 professors were invited to reduce their lectures to writing and make a gift of them to their university, and prizes were offered for the publication of new texts or the translation of foreign volumes. Nevertheless, the majority of the reforms produced but a slender result, for the men charged with putting them into effect were already trained in the old ideas, finding it impossible to enter into the spirit of the new.

[Sidenote: Special institutions of learning and scientific production.]

Possibly because they realized that the universities could not be depended upon to solve the problem of higher education and scientific output, the reformers created a long series of institutions of a special character to attain these ends. Thus, schools of medicine, surgery, the physical sciences, mathematics, jurisprudence, military art, astronomy, engineering of various types, botany, mineralogy, natural history, machinery, and others were founded, while a number of royal academies, or learned societies, were established, among which may be mentioned those of the Spanish tongue (1713), history (1738), and the fine arts (1752). Many foreign teachers and scientists were brought to Spain, but since any permanent advantage had to come from the efforts of Spaniards a number of students from the


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