11 MARCH 1922, Page 17


TEE late Dr. Warm could have had no better biographer than his old pupil and friend, Mr. C. R. L. Fletcher. The „memoir now published is of moderate length and yet contains abundant detail ; it is appreciative but it is by no means an undiscriminating eulogy ; further, while it will appeal mainly to old -Etonians, it contains much that will interest all who knew Dr. Warm personally or by repute. Dr. Warre's whole life was given to Eton. He entered the school as a boy of twelve in 1849. After his Oxford days, when he was a Scholar of Balliol and a Fellow of Ail Souls, he returned to Eton in 1860 as an assistant master. He was appointed headmaster in 1884, and held the office for twenty-one years. After a brief interval of repose he once more returned to Eton as Provost in 1909, and resigned that dignity, in 1918, when he was worn down by sickness, eighteen months before his death in January, 1920. He saw the school transformed externally, by the erection of many new buildings • Edmond Warts, D.D., C.D., C.V.O., sometime Headmaster and Provost of Eton College. By C. IL L. Fletcher. London : Murray. [21s. net.]

to accommodate the increasing numbers of boys, and he took en active part in improving its organization and its methods of teaching, always in face of much opposition from the tradi- tionalists.

"'Be a reformer, but don't be found out,' had been Jowett's laconic advice to his old friend. Warm loved to quote this, but never in the least minded being 'found out.' One of his oldest still-living friends says : 'I distinctly feared Warre's accession : I feared the dominance of athletics, his own auto- cratic ways, his strict adherence to the routine of what I thought rather a narrow and dry "scholasticism." The change came, and never was a more delightful surprise—it was like a fresh wind-from-the-sea blowing into the place. Being now acknow- ledged Master of us all, Warm became accessible, kindly, interested, indulgent, and to anyone who applied to him in a difficult case he was prodigal of help and advice.' Another, much younger, colleague, says : The little boys had expected a splendid epoch, in which work would take a secondary place, and a great deal more time be free for rowing and games' [perhaps their parents had been reading in the holidays the letter of iteadetnicuol. But they were grievously disappointed when short crisp notice followed notice, each announcing longer schools and more necessary work ; there was a general " screw- ing-up " of discipline, which positively terrified some of them. A friend of mine circulated a picture in which Hornby was represented as King Log, while Warre as King Stork was already getting busy with the little frogs.'—[E. L. C.] Then expired the old fiction that Eton was a place at which a boy need not work unless he wanted to work. Warm used to tell with great delight the story of how Walker, the High Master of St. Paul's, famous for his successes in the field of scholarships at the Universities, once made fun of him. They were fellow guests, for some educational conference, of the President of Magdalen ; and having never met before, each had formed a somewhat adverse opinion of the other. 'I was obliged to leave them alone to smoke,' says Sir Herbert, 'and they soon became the best of friends.' Apparently Walker asked Warm what the hours of school work were at Eton. Warm named them, and went on to explain that these hours constituted only about half a boy's week-work. Walker expressed his surprise rather ambiguously, and Werra, conceiving the opinion that Walker had misunderstood him, went on to dilate on pupil- room and the necessary sapping out of schooL His interlocutor led him on as long as possible, and then, in his most sardonic tone, 'Do you mean to say, Dr. ViTarre, that you have the face to make the boys work such long hours ? I call it scandalous, sir, scandalous ! ' Warm afterwards told his host, 1 had thought him a mere crammer, though no doubt a genius at it ; but he is nothing of the sort, his ideas on education are thoroughly sound.' And Walker, for his part, said he had expected to find Warm pompous and stuck up, but I was all wrong, he is a splendid fellow, though very innocent about the difficulties of the world.'"

Mr. Fletcher's considered opinion is that Dr. Warm was not autocratic enough and worried too much over the effects of reforms that he felt desirable. It is certainly curious to learn that when Dr. Warm became headmaster the Sixth Form were ostentatiously rude to him for two years on end and almost drove him into resigning. We cannot imagine Dr. Butler or Thring enduring such impertinence from schoolboys for two days. Dr. Warre's meekness under such provocation contrasts oddly with the awe that he inspired in later years when to his Sixth Form he seemed "hardly mortal in his bigness" with the voice of an Olympian. He enlarged the curriculum and set up a School of Practical Mechanics at his own expense as long ago as 1879. But for all that he was a firm believer in compulsory Greek at the old Universities and delighted in quoting the opinion of a Japanese expert who, after visiting the Continental schools, told Dr. Warm that "they do not turn out the men we want, and you do." Dr. Warm himself, though not a profound scholar, cultivated to the end the pleasant art of making verses. Mr. Fletcher quotes many of them, including "the most per- fectly humorous Greek epigram written in modern England," on Mr. Lloyd George's Newcastle speech against landowners in the autumn of 1909.

"'Br rali 'Axappais angayoryuchn riper

Toth yip Exorras Xotoopel 'yew* Sr."

Mr. Fletcher valiantly tries to render it as :—

" At Newcastle Mr. George, a monstrous demagogue,

' Lloyd-orates against landlords,"

in which, of course, the subtle allusions of the Greek are missing.

Dr. Warm did good service to Oxford, to Eton and to England in starting a Volunteer Corps, first at the University and then at Eton, and in helping to found the National Rifle Associa- tion in 1859. We are told that among the members of the first O.U.R.V.C. in that year were Private John Morley (Lincoln) and Private John Addington Symonds (Bethel), as well as Private W. P. Ker. It can hardly be doubted that Dr. Warre's high reputation as an oarsman was of great service to the early Volunteer movement, to which he gave much time and thought for many years. Of Dr. Warm on the river Mr. Fletcher natur- ally has much to say. At Oxford Warm was the greatest oar of his time, though he had not the best of luck. The boat in which he rowed six beat Cambridge in 1857, but the next year, when Warm was President of the O.U.B.C., the Oxford stroke caught a, crab at the start and twisted his rowlock, so that Warm at seven had to set the stroke the whole way and naturally failed to overcome the heavy handicap on his crew. He took the Bethel eight to the head of the river in 1855, but the next year Wadliam, as Sir T. G. Jackson lives to relate, deposed Balliol from that honourable place. Returning to his old school, Warm developed Eton rowing on new lines and became known as the greatest of coaches. In 1869 he is recorded by a survivor of the crew to have told an Oxford four, practising for a race against Harvard, that "this is the first time I have ever seen perfect rowing " ; the four was composed of F. Willan, A. C. Yarborough, J. C. Tina) and S. D. Darbishire, with F. H. Hall as cox. We must pass quickly from an enthralling subject.

Of Dr. Warm in private life, as sportsman, a farmer and an enthusiastic gardener, Mr. Fletcher has many pleasant anecdotes. At the country home at Baron's Down, near Dulverton, which he rented for many years, Dr. Warm delighted to become as one of his Somersetsbire neighbours, who knew of him as "a kind o' schulemeaster up Lunnon way." Among his papers he preserved the complete Devon-Somerset conjugation of the verb "To be," sent by Mr. Kindersley. The present subjunctive runs thus :—

" Ef so be as oi be

EL so be as you be

Spoase et be Spoase we'm Spoase you'm Ef zo be as they'm."

Among the portraits in the book is George Richmond's drawing of Warm as Newcastle Scholar in 1853—a handsome and healthy young athlete, the best type of Englishman. It is pleasant to think that the promise shown in that happy face was fulfilled in a long and useful career.