32 THE POSSIBLE IMPROVEMENT
with a great and liberally managed estate being widely appreciated, there are usually more applicants than vacancies, so selection can be exercised. The consequence is that the class of men found upon these properties is markedly superior to those in similar positions elsewhere. It might well become a point of honour, and as much an avowed object, for noble families to gather fine specimens of humanity around them, as it is to procure and maintain fine breeds of cattle and so forth, which are costly, but repay in satisfaction.
There is yet another existing form of princely benevolence which might be so extended as to exercise a large effect on race improvement. I mean the provision to exceptionally promising young couples of healthy and convenient houses at low rentals. A continually renewed settlement of this kind can be easily imagined, free from the taint of patronage, and analogous to colleges with their self-elected fellowships and rooms for residence, that should become an exceedingly . desirable residence for a specified time. It would be so in the same way that a good club by its own social advantages attracts desirable candidates. The tone of the place would be higher than elsewhere, on account of the h,igh quality of the inmates, and it would be distinguished by an air of energy, intelligence, health and self-respect and by mutual helpfulness.