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otherwise probably have been less creditably
spent than in learning or listening to music.'

The habits and manners of these men
appear to have been decidedly improved
by these softening influences. They are
peaceful and simple. 'During a stay of
several weeks in the town,' says the same
authority, 'I neither saw nor heard of
altercations or fighting. The man, on his return
from labour, usually washes (the colliers and
miners invariably wash every day from head
to foot), puts on another coat, and sits down
to his meal of potatoes, meat, and tea, or
broth, and bread and cheese, as the case may
be. His wife and children, comfortably
clothed and cheerful, sit down with him.
Afterwards he goes to a neighbour's house,
or receives some friends of his own, when
they discuss the news and light gossip affecting
their class, or talk over the success or
difficulties attending their work and their
prospects as regards the future. Visiting
many of their houses at night, I saw numbers
of such groups; in one instance only I saw
them drinking beer, and that was at a kind of
house warming, one of the body having that
night taken possession of the neatly furnished
house where I found them assembled.'

These are, indeed, only insulated good
effects wrought by private individuals; but
their beneficial effects have led to and helped
on the systematic cultivation of music as a
branch of popular education under the direct
sanction and authority of the Government;
and the labours of Mr. Hullah, who was
chosen as the agent in this good work, have
been attended with a degree of success far
beyond anything that could have been

Mr. Hullah had turned his attention to the
subject of popular instruction in Music,
before the matter was taken up by the Government,
and had examined the methods of tuition
adopted in various parts of the Continent.
An investigation of the system of Wilhem,
which had been formally sanctioned by the
French Government, induced him to attempt
its introduction in a modified form, into this
country; and he had an opportunity of doing
so by being appointed to instruct in vocal
music the pupils of the training-school at
Battersea, then recently opened under the
direction of the National Society. In February
1840, he gave his first lesson to a class of
about twenty boys, and from this small
beginning sprang the great movement which
speedily extended over the kingdom. The
success of these lessons attracted the notice
of the Committee of the Privy Council, who
undertook the publication of the work
containing the adaptation of the Wilhem system
to English use; and under the sanction of
the Committee, three classes were opened in
Exeter Hall for schoolmasters or teachers in
elementary schools, each class limited to one
hundred persons; and a fourth class, of the
same number, for female teachers. These
classes were opened in February and March
1841. Their expenses were defrayed partly
from small payments made by the pupils
themselves, and partly by a subscription
raised among a few distinguished friends of
education. It is worthy of particular notice
(as an erroneous impression has existed on the
subject) that the Government has never
contributed a shilling to the support of any of
Mr. Hullah's classes; though the official
countenance and encouragement of the
Committee of Council certainly contributed much
to Mr. Hullah's success.

Many applications for similar instructions
having been made by persons not engaged in
teaching, the elementary classes were thrown
open to the public; and in the spring of 1841
these applications became so numerous, that
it was found necessary to engage the Great
Room at Exeter Hall and several of the
smaller rooms.

These first courses of elementary lessons
being ended, an Upper School was opened, in
December 1841, for the practice of choral
music, to enable those pupils who might desire
it to keep up and increase the knowledge they
had acquired. This class was joined by about
250 persons.

The first great choral meeting of Mr.
Hullah's classes was held in April 1842.
About 1500 persons sang, of whom the
majority were adults, who, a year before, had
possessed no knowledge of music. During the
year following, 861 persons joined the
elementary classes, and 1465 became members
of the Upper Schools, which were increased
in number from one to three.

Of these Upper Schools, Mr. Hullah
himself says—*

'They consist of persons of both sexes, of
nearly all ages, and nearly all ranks; for I
think it would be difficult to name a class or
calling, of which they do not include some
representative. We have clergymen, lawyers,
doctors, tradesmen, clerks, mechanics, soldiers,
and, of course, many schoolmasters and
schoolmistresses. The large number of females,
besides distinguishing us broadly from those
musical societies called Social Harmonists and
Glorious Apollos and the likerelics of an
age when men were not at all times fit
company for womenbesides producing that
courteous and scrupulous tone which female
influence must produce wherever it has fair
play, removes the only objection which can
reasonably be made to this kind of social
recreation, that it carries individuals away
from their homes, and breaks up family
circles; for our meetings include many a
family circle entirehusbands and wives,
brothers and sisters, parents and children; and
these, in many instances, taught by one

* The Duty and Advantage of Learning to Sing. A Lecture
delivered at the Leeds Church Institution, 1846.

When the singing classes were opened in
Exeter Hall, other classes were also opened,