Obituary | Published:

Prof. E. H. Rennie


TIME irresistibly takes its terrible toll and the 1 names left upon the roll of our old guard are now very few. The Australian mail just in brings me a copy of the Adelaide Register of Jan. 10, with an account of the sudden death of my old friend, Prof. Edward H. Rennie. He seemed to be in good health but on Saturday, Jan. 8, going into the garden, he took a drink of water, lay down-and just died. A few days previously, I had received a long chatty letter from him, dated Dec. 20. In this he speaks of having had a very strenuous year and feeling somewhat played out. During the first six months, he had been acting vice-chancellor of the University; then came the University jubilee and after this the meeting at Perth, of the Australasian Association for the Advancement of Science, of which he was president. Added to this, he had much anxiety on account of the illness of his wife and daughter. He tells me of the journey across the arid region to Perth, lasting three days. At one part, the railway runs in an undeviating straight line, nearly 400 miles, across flat desert, where nothing was growing, he says, over about 2 feet high, the horizon being unbroken by a single tree or elevation of any kind. People seldom realise how much of Australia is country of this order. “Aboriginals were seen here and there almost in their primitive condition, except that they wore clothes.”

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