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  Item Reference: KCLCAL-1985-1986-10

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the historical background pledges especially from the clergy In 1829 the College was granted Royal Charter and in 1831 it opened its doors to the first students on its present main site immediately to the east of Somerset House Like University College King's College was not empowered to confer degrees and in 1836 the University of London was set up as an examining body financed by the government All however had not been plain sailing Although he was pledged opponent of Catholic emancipation in the face of real threat of civil war in the kingdom Wellington backed down This caused outraged high tories led by the Earl of Winchelsea together with number of clerics to withdraw their pledges of subscriptions to the College and it was left without firm financial endowment Such also were the nature of Winchelsea's remarks that Wellington challenged him to duel Teaching in the nineteenth century The College that opened its doors in 1831 was divided into Senior and Junior Departments which rapidly developed into the Department of General Literature and Science the Medical Department and King's College School In 1834 the College shed its initial image as finishing school and conferred an Associateship of King's College on those who had pursued satisfactory course of study over several years For many years this was recognisable as degree equivalent although would-be physicians surgeons and latterly engineers also chose to prepare for examination under the rules of their prospective professional societies Eventually majority sat for examination by the University of London With the exception of teachers of foreign languages members of staff were required to be practising Anglicans and attendance at divinity classes and at Chapel was also required of regular students No bar as such however was imposed on students and right from 1831 the College admitted occasional students who wished to pursue their individual studies in particular subject or enhance their learning by sitting at the feet of particular teacher From the outset the College's commitment to education was both practical and wide ranging desire to extend the clinical experience of its medical students lay behind the founding of the first King's College Hospital in Portugal Street in 1839 From 1839 also stemmmed significant development in engineering The Wheatstone Laboratory of Physics is the oldest of its kind in England and this example has been followed in more recent years with pioneering laboratories in Comparative Pathology Bacteriology and Electrical Engineering Professorship of Law was established at the beginning new academic departments were created to provide for the clergy in 1846 and the Day Training Education Department was established under Adamson in 1890 Chinese and Arabic were taught from 1847 and 1854 respectively and in 1880 School of Practical Art with Professorship in Fine Art partially endowed by the City and Guilds Institute for Technical Education was established It is perhaps difficult to imagine some of the excitement that must have characterised the College as succession of new posts for new subjects was established the interest that must have been generated when Charles Wheatstone demonstrated the electric telegraph to the Prince Regent or when Joseph Lister came to London as Professor of Clinical Surgery and Surgeon to King's College Hospital in 1877 study of the Australian Dictionary of National Biography or histories of the
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