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In the Inland Revenue, out of fourteen persons who succeeded, three (with 674, 672, and 658 marks) would have had to give way to three unsuccessful candidates, who obtained 740, 709, and 707 marks respectively.

Consequently, of the 30 vacancies which have been filled up by these competitions, seven have been filled up by men inferior to some of the other competitors.

In noticing these anomalies, we must admit that under any conceivable arrangement there will still remain differences in the average merits of one set of competitors and another set, and candidates may gain or lose by being accidentally placed in a weak or a strong body of competitors; but at all events this evil would be very much diminished by having one large instead of several small competitions.

As a further mode of doing complete justice to meritorious candidates who may have been unsuccessful owing to the still superior merits of others, it may be well that such candidates should have an early opportunity of again competing for the like situation.

In our last Report we gave a detailed description of a competitive examination for certain clerkships in the office of this Commission. A similar examination has taken place very recently for one of these clerkships which had become vacant.

Twenty-six candidates were nominated to compete for this situation a junior clerkship with a salary of 1001. a-year, rising by an annual increase of 101. a-year to 2001.

No particular plan was adopted for the purpose of obtaining or selecting candidates. Communications were addressed to a few masters of public schools, offering nominations to such persons as they might recommend. Names were also received from several other persons to whom the intention of holding a competition was known, and permission to compete was given to one or two correspondents who happened to apply for information as to the mode of obtaining entrance into the Civil Service generally

In order to prevent any candidate from coming forward under false ideas of the nature of the situation to be competed for, letters were addressed to the nominees some time before the day appointed for the examination,

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informing them of the precise value of the clerkship and of the conditions of service, and telling them distinctly that the duties of the office would be of a routine character, and that upon their steady discharge of those duties their continuance in the Public Service would depend.

Of the twenty-six candidates nominated, twenty-three were actually examined ; two of the remaining three having been prevented by illness from attending, and the other one having voluntarily withdrawn.

Fourteen of the twenty-three who attended were residents in London or its neighbourhood, and nine came up to town from various parts of England.

The sort of education received by the candidates will in some degree appear from the following account of the schools, &c. in which they had been instructed. The statement also gives an indication as to the social position of the candidates.

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Place of Education.
Cheltenham Proprietary School.

Ditto, and Haileybury.
College of Piotrkow (Petrikau), Poland.
Coventry Free Grammar School.
Hanwell Collegiate School, and King's College.
Hereford Cathedral School.
Hereford Proprietary School,
King's College School.
Ditto,

and King's College.
Ditto, and private School in Paris.
Leeds Collegiate School and Leeds Free Grammar School.
Liverpool Royal Collegiate School, and Rugby.
London University College School.
Midge Holme Public School.
Northern Church of England School.
Private Schools (3).
Private Tutors.
Royal Naval School, and Oxford Universiiy.
St. Paul's School, and Charterhouse.
Stockwell Grammar School.
Walsall Grammar School,
Westminster School.
Winchester College.

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The following Table shows the number of marks obtained by each competitor :

TABLE showing the Results of an EXAMINATION held on the 5th, 6th, 7th, and 8th days of January 1858, of Candidates

nominated to compete for the Junior Situation of Clerk in the Office of the Civil Service Commission.

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50

100

100

100

200

150

150

200

100

100

100

100

100

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200 1950

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1. G. W. H. Fletcher
2. A. S. Cowley
3. C. P. Gloyne
4.
5.
6. C. B. Dowden
7.
8.
9. A. W. Benni
10,
11.
12.
13.
14.
15.
16.
17.
18.
19.
20.
21.
22.
23.

290
237
250
222
200
196
219
185

99
206
233
114
203
242
157
191
195
142
183
112

79
118
92

58 69 44 65 89 71 59 79 56 61 58 51 51 33 49 44 58 40 39 56 60

93

140
140

88
103
13
93
98
73
63
110
98
30
83
65
105
48

76

75 30 75 75

41 18 0 0 35 10 0

136 81
150 82
170 132
163 110
196 71
100 71
136 67
143

109
140 105
127 61

30
100
80 70
92 87
106 55
100 58
114 44

43
36 65
36 11
100 27

37
50 33

73 90 70 93 65 73 58 58

26

70 10 50 45 15

85
120
133

80
115

95
140
28

0
10
83

5
90
35
53
20
10
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90
15
40
40
20

5
50
10

1468 1340 1315 1275 1254 1188 1141 1090 1042 1035 973 864 833 827 809 737 682 663 658 616 596 478 402

94 60 22 39 83 90 54 38 43 64 86 16 20 67 6

47 72 70 70 67 65 57 53 79 87 57 83

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NOTE.The unsuccessful candidates were informed that their names would not be made public unless they expressed a wish to that effect,

Some of the candidates were also examined with credit in extra subjects voluntarily chosen. In these extra examinations,

Mr. Benni showed a perfect knowledge of the Polish, and a thorough knowledge of the Russian and German languages; he also showed very creditable knowledge of Universal History, and creditable knowledge of Mathematical Geography.

Mr. Cowley showed fair elementary knowledge of Algebra.

Mr. Dowden showed fair proficiency in translating from German and from Italian.

Mr. Gloyne showed creditable knowledge of the first six books of Euclid, of Algebra, including Arithmetical and Geometrical Progressions, and of Plane Trigonometry ; and very creditable knowledge of Entomology.

No. 4. showed very creditable knowledge of Euclid, Algebra, and Plane Trigonometry, and fair knowledge of the principles of the Differential and Integral Calculus and of the Calculus of Variations; he also showed very creditable knowledge of Inorganic Chemistry, and creditable knowledge of Animal Physiology.

No. 8 showed fair proficiency in translating from Greek, and creditable knowledge of Ancient History.

No. 11 showed creditable knowledge of Elementary Algebra.

No. 15 showed fair knowledge of Book-keeping by Double : Entry, and fair elementary knowledge of Algebra, as far as Simple Equations.

Since the commencement of the present year a competitive examination of considerable importance has taken place under our superintendence of 37 candidates, being temporary clerks in the War Office, for clerkships on the establishment of that department. The following Tabular view of that examination, shows an amount of merit on the part of the successful candidates which is highly satisfactory, especially as regards those requirements which bear immediately on the duties they will have to perform.

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In reporting upon the competitive examinations which have taken place under our superintendence, we feel it to be our duty to avow our continued conviction that the selection of persons for junior situations in the Civil Service by competitive examination, combined with the proper conditions as to age, health, and character, and with the check of a period of probation, and with promotion by merit from class to class, is the best mode of providing for the Public Service.

This opinion has twice received the sanction of the House of Commons; on the last occasion (14th July

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