10 SEPTEMBER 1948, Page 4

Signs of the spread of culture are always exhilarating, and

in view of the admitted inadequacy of our existing universities it is highly encouraging to learn of the continued manifestations of activity by a propitious partnership between Eugene, Duke of Athens, and the Rev. Henry Chellew, sponsors both of the " Academie Inter- nationale, Founded by Chevalier Jules Perez, 188o, Affiliated with Learned Institutions in Europe, America and Asia." What will, or does, the Academy do? Well, it confers " the honorary dignity " of all sorts of doctorates and that kind of thing—" honorary " being a very prudent touch ; it is said not to accept, or not to seek, fees, so presumably it represents pure philanthropy. Who is the Duke of Athens? I have no idea ; he remains a mystery. And Mr. Henry Chellew ? He once, I believe, filled a Free Church pulpit before he ascended to the regions of the higher learning. Let it be made clear that anyone who finds pleasure or profit in it can confer degrees and diplomas ad lib. There is no reason that I know of why Woolworths shouldn't sell them. I rather hope they will.