Mankind are not bees; they have learned to look before and after, and will never be cured of the habit. The present will not satisfy or engross them.
Goldwin Smith, “The Prospect of a Moral Interregnum,”
Atlantic Monthly (November 1879)
Upon leaving Cornell, Goldwin Smith never again held the formal post of professor of history, although he was very often accorded the courtesy title. His honorary D.C.L. degree from Oxford in 1882 was also usually added to his name, which brought much authority when he was asked to give lectures or consult on various academic questions. Although never holding a professorship at the nearby University of Toronto, he was nonetheless very influential in both the history department and the university as a whole.
George Wrong, the founder of the modern history department at Toronto, was Smith’s protgé. 1 They frequently consulted on academic questions, and Wrong acted as proofreader for at least one of Smith’s manuscripts. Wrong vigorously adhered to the tutorial system in the Oxford manner, which became a distinctive feature of the department until at least the 1960s. Wrong strongly concurred with Smith’s view of the obligation to make moral judgments in history.