Minutes of the meeting held in the York Room, Holborn Restaurant, on Thursday
10th September, 1908.
|Present||Mr. William Archer, London|
Professor James W. Bright, Baltimore
Dr F.J. Furnivall, London
Mr. E.P. Gaston, London
Professor I. Gollancz, London
Professor H Stanley Jevons, Cardiff
Mr. J.J. Monro, London.
Mr. A.W. Pollard, London
Dr. Chas. P.G. Scott, New York
Professor Walter Skeat, Cambridge
Dr Furnivall, having called the meeting to order moved that
Professor Skeat do take the chair.
Carried by acclamation.
The chairman moved that Mr. Archer be asked to act as
Secretary for the time being.
The Chairman made an opening statement mentioning the difficulties
that had been encountered in former years by the scholars who had urged a
simplification of English Spelling. It was now proposed to make a renewed effort to
overcome these difficulties by means of a Society which should co-operate with the
Simplified spelling Board of New York, but should adapt to English conditions its
constitution and its methods of propaganda.
Dr Scott, on behalf of the Visiting Committee of the American Board,
said that that board felt that the cause would be greatly advanced by the
establishment of a similar organisation in England, and Professor Bright added that
it quite noticed(?) that the details of method found advantageous in one country
might not be equally suitable in the other.
Professor Gollancz enquired as to the status of those gentlemen present who were not members of the existing Simplified spelling Board of the U.S.A. It being agreed that the meeting as a whole should consider itself a Provisional Committee, Professor Gollancz urged that the proposed Society should not tie itself down in its style and title to a policy of simplification, but should adopt a name importing a dispassionate interest in the problems of spelling, rather than any settle conviction as to the need for reform. He proposed as a title the "English Spelling Society".
Dr Furnivall & several others opposed this view and a general discussion ensued.
Finally Dr Furnivall moved (and Professor Jevons seconded):-
"That the persons now present be invited to form a Committee to establish a Simplified Spelling Society in the United Kingdom."Professor Gollancz moved (Mr. Monro seconding) the amendment that the word "English" be substituted for "Simplified".
A vote being taken the amendment was negatived by 7 votes to 2, and Dr. Furnivall's motion was carried nem. com., Professor Gollancz refraining from voting.
All those present with the exception of Professor Gollancz having accepted the invitation to form a Committee, Professor Jevons read the following draft:-
Constitution and rules of the Simplified Spelling Society
1. The name of the society shall be "The Simplified Spelling Society".
2. Its objects shall be to recommend simpler spellings of English words than those now in use, to further the general use of such simpler spellings by every means in its power, and to co-operate with the Simplified Spelling Board of the United States of America, founded and incorporated in New York.
3. All persons shall be admissible as members of the society without distinction of sex or nationality.
4. Every member shall pay a subscription of at least one shilling per annum, which shall entitle him to the receipt post free of the Society's publications.
5. A person shall be deemed to have become a member of the Society when he has notified the Hon. Secretary in writing of his desire to become a member, and tendered the amount of one year's subscription, and the Hon. Secretary has notified him of his admission to the Society. The acceptance of any person as a member of the Society shall not be delayed longer than one calendar month from the date of his application, unless the committee by formal resolution, has refused him admission, which course they shall be entitled to take without assigning any reason.
6. A general meeting of the Society shall be held annually in the month of June, at which Reports shall be presented, and the officers for the ensuing year elected.
7. The Hon. Secretary may arrange for the holding of general meetings of the Society at other times for any purpose of which the Committee may approve; and the Hon. Secretary can be required to Call a special General Meeting thirty days after receiving a requisition signed by not less than 50 members of the Society.
8. There shall be a President and not less than three Vice-presidents, an Honorary Treasurer, & an Honorary Secretary. The President, the Hon. Secretary, together with not less than nine other members, shall form the committee.
9. The officers shall hold office for one year but be eligible for re-election. The ordinary members of the Committee shall be elected for three years, one third retiring each year but being also eligible for re-election.
10. The Officers and Committee for the ensuing year shall be elected at the annual General Meeting. The President and Vice-Presidents shall be nominated by the committee; but any member of the Society shall have the right to nominate any other member for the officers of Hon. Treasurer and Hon. Secretary, or ordinary membership of the committee.
11. The Hon. Secretary shall have the assistance of a paid secretary to be styles "Assistant Secretary"
12. The committee shall have power to make payments for any work done for the Society
Dr. Furnivall moved (Professor Bright seconding) "That the preceding rules be adopted as the rules of the Society subject to modification. Carried unanimously.
Dr. Furnivall moved (Professor Jevons seconding)
"That Professor Skeat be elected President of the Simplified Spelling Society". Carried unanimously.The following gentlemen were then elected as Vice presidents:-
Mr. Andrew Carnegie (proposed by Dr. Furnivall, seconded by Mr. Archer).
Dr. Furnivall (Proposed by Mr. Archer, seconded by Professor Jevons).
Sir J.A.H. Murray (Proposed by Professor Bright, seconded by Dr. Furnivall)
Dr. Henry Bradley (proposed by Dr. Furnivall seconded by Dr. Scott).
Professor James W. Bright (proposed by Dr. Furnivall seconded by Professor Jevons).
It was arranged that the next meeting of the Committee should be held at University College, on Friday the 18th of September at 8 p.m.
The Proceedings closed with a vote of thanks to the Visiting Committee of the Simplified Spelling Board, moved by Professor Gollancz, and seconded by Dr. Furnivall. A suitable response was made by the members of the Visiting Committee.
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