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Educational equality – 1898

New Zealand Tablet 8th April, 1898 p9

National University of Ireland, Galway  Photo: Rob Smyth.  Wikimedia Commons

National University of Ireland, Galway
Photo: Rob Smyth.
Wikimedia Commons

A great meeting was held in Galway to consider the Catholic University question, and as might be expected, the Galway people spoke with no uncertain sound on the just claims of Catholics to educational equality. Professor Pye, MD., J. P., proposed the first resolution which ran as follows :—

“That we adopt the claim put forward by the Catholic laity of Ireland in their recent declaration, and reaffirmed by the national meeting held in Dublin, on the 11th inst., for perfect equality with our non-Catholic fellow-countrymen in all that regards endowment and privileges of University institutions, and express our determination to enforce that claim by every constitutional means in our power.”

The resolution was supported by Professor Steinberger, M.A., F.R.U.I., in a speech so fitting and to the point that we cannot refrain from quoting. He said he had travelled or lived in most of the countries of Europe, and when he first come to Ireland to learn the Irish language he met with many surprises. Nothing surprised him more than to find Ireland — which taught the greater part of the countries of Europe, and but for which he might now be a barbarian on the Alps or on the Danubem is without a University of its own.

He was astonished to find that the Catholic people of Ireland had no University. If they looked to India they could find the people provided for in this respect. If they looked to Austria, which was pretty much like the British Empire, in having under its dominion many different races and people speaking various languages, they would find the higher educational wants of these people well provided. Ireland is the only place in Europe where the majority of the people have no University.”

The following resolution was also carried;
“That we call on the members of Parliament for the town and county to press the Catholic claim for perfect educational equality on the House of Commons on every suitable occasion, and to expose the urgency of the grievance, and the injustice which a delay in dealing with it inflicts on the Catholic community.”

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