Honorary awards

Emeritus Professor Ernest Rudolph Holme OBE

The honorary degree of Doctor of Letters was conferred upon Emeritus Professor Ernest Rudolph Holme by the Chancellor Sir Charles Bickerton Blackburn KCMG OBE at the ceremony of conferring of honorary degrees held on 29 August 1952 as part of the University of Sydney's Centenary celebrations.

Emeritus Professor Ernest Rudolph Holme, OBE, MA Sydney, was formerly McCaughey Professor of English Language at the University.

Emeritus Professor Ernest Rudolph Holme

The Dean of the Faculty of Arts Professor R B Farrell (second from left) presenting Emeritus Professor Holme to the Chancellor Sir Charles Bickerton Blackburn for the award of the honorary degree, a Sydney Morning Herald photo, with copies held by the University of Sydney Archives.


Presented by the Dean of the Faculty of Arts, Professor R B Farrell:

Mr Chancellor, the University of Sydney has cause to remember Ernest Rudolph Holme for the example he set of selfless devotion to its advancement and for his deep sense of obligation to his community. Born in 1871, in Footscray, Victoria, educated at The King's School, Parramatta, and graduating at this University in 1891, he was appointed, after further study at the Universities of Paris and Berlin, to the staff of the Sydney Department of English, and from 1921 to 1941 was Professor of English Language. In scholarship he brought distinction upon himself by his contributions to the then new science of phonetics. His concern with education in all its forms found practical expression, and he laboured untiringly to create appropriate conditions of work for staff and students alike. The re-constitution of the University Union in 1911, his services to evening students, the War Memorial and the Carillon, the organization of educational facilities in Britain for Australian ex-Servicemen after the First World War, are some of the things for which we know his name. In his long life he has given proof of character and wisdom, which, as Goethe believed, consist in performing the tasks that lie nearest.

Mr Chancellor, I present to you Ernest Rudolph Holme, Officer of the most Excellent Order of the British Empire, Master of Arts.

From "The University of Sydney Centenary Celebrations August 26 - August 31, 1952" compiled by the Office of Information and Public Relations. Allan Gamble, Information and Public Relations Officer.