3 NOVEMBER 1866, Page 3

Earlfowis opened the new building . for the Cambridge Union

Debating Society on Tuesday in a very able speech, which was followed 13y an admirable inaugural address by Lord Houghton, on souse points of. which we have said soutething.elsewhere. Earl Powis, after alluding.to the many advantages of debating societies, touched with true literary delicacy on some of the qualities of the different orators of the day, contrasting "the ornate, diffuse, discursive . rhetoric of Brougham, full of amplification with the severe simplicity of Lyndhurst, of•whom it might be said that his statement was worth another man's argument, and from whose speeches they could no more eliminate a sentence: than they could condense Tacitus." " Let them study," he said, " Cicero's picture of the ideal, orator, that so their. speech might not be poured forth turbid, indistinct, and frothy, like the great flow of the Abyssinian river, but rather by study and reflection let it be filtered, condensed, and refined." Lord Houghton's inaugural address-vras -singularly picturesque and interesting-; his personal reminiscences -clear, humorous, and characteristic.; and his obser- vation on the excessive conservatism of English .University men, as compared with those of the German and French Universities, no doubt,-eapecially for this generation,-true. We do not sup- pose the reason to be very recondite. In Germany, and we believe in France, much more than half the students are from the poorest class ; in the English Universities, as at present consti- tuted, a very large proportion are from the' territorial class, and most. of -the remainder from amongst the wealthiest of the mer- cantile classes. Of course Conservatism is the fashion where privilege is, hereditary.