Snell exhibitioner


Snell exhibitioner

The Snell Exhibition is an annual scholarship awarded by Balliol College, Oxford and its recipients are referred to as Snell Exhibitioners. The award was founded by the bequest of Sir John Snell in a will that he made in 1677. It is awarded to graduates of the University of Glasgow of high academic achievement who wish to continue their studies at postgraduate level at Balliol - though the original stipulation was for students at Oxford, rather than Balliol in particular. It is best known for helping Adam Smith in the 18th century. Snell died on 6 August 1679, but wrangling over the will meant that it was nearly 20 years before the first scholarship were awarded. The first four Snell Exhibitioners were sent from Glasgow and admitted to Balliol in mid-1699.

Snell had been a Royalist in the Civil War, and was later secretary to the Duke of Monmouth and had the management of his Scottish estates. He intended the bequest to be used to educate Scottish clergymen for the then-established Scottish Episcopal Church. By Adam Smith's day, the bequest was mostly regarded as an educational charity, though its exact status was not settled until later. "By the will of John Snell his exhibitors were under bond to take Anglican orders and return to Scotland, but the penalty was not enforced in the case of Adam Smith and numerous others." (Fay, quoting the Times obituary of Smith.)

Famous Snell Exhibitioners include:
* Adam Smith
* Hely Hutchinson Almond
* James Stirling (mathematician)
* Archibald Campbell Tait
* John Douglas
* Professor Sir Neil MacCormick (legal theorist)
* Sir William Hamilton
* James Williams Mylne
* Andrew Lang
* James Gordon Howie
* John Nicol

External links

* [http://www.balliol.ox.ac.uk/history/miscellany/snell/ The Snell Foundation] information from Balliol College


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