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Our new Sub-Warden, C H L Davidson

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Our new Sub-Warden, C H L Davidson article written to the college magazine of September 1957 by Mr L A H Arndt.

Mr C H L Davidson, M A (Lond) Dip in Edu., Sub-Warden from 1957 to 1958.
Head Master Middle School from 1948 to 1957.


When in December, 1923, the Editors of the College Magazine welcomed Mr. Davidson back as a member of the Staff, they seemed to have had the correct prognostics. 'We hope to keep him long with us', they wrote. Thirty - three years after, he is sub - Warden. Few can be considered more fitted for the post of trusted lieutenant.

In the communique issued by the Management of 'Twelfth Night' in 1919, one reads : "The Duke" is a find, the value of which is realized already" - another prophetic estimate, mutatis mutandis. In 1935, the comment on his Antonio, in 'The Merchant of Venice' is : "His voice always held the audience, and his entrance was greeted with rapt attention". More recently, in 1949, it was an education to be of the company, when he reheard Caesar in the projected production of 'Julius Caesar' - he even threw himself down three or four steps, 'a bleeding corpse'. These qualities he played on the stage, were his own in real life : a quiet dignified presence, a voice that holds, and a readiness to throw himself without reserve into any task he undertook.

"There is hardly any activity which Mr Davidson has not at some time either participated in or supervised" says Periscope in The Ceylon Fortnightly Review(1957). Hardly an issue of the college magazine from 1912 (when he was admitted to Form2), could appear without his name somewhere-whether at the top of his form,or 'baffling the batsman' or collecting 'a pair of specs'at the Big match, or playing a role in the traditional dramatic undertaking:as Colour-Sergeant,or secretary of the debating society, or Prefect of Copleston.He had his failures,of course, and cricket master's lament is on record. But he won through.

Passing his London Inter-Arts, Mr Davidson left college, taking up a post at S. John's, Panadura, when he met-rumor has it, on the stage:-his future wife, who has shared with him his burdens in all that he has put his hand to at S Thomas'(the pages of our magazine,again, bear testimony to her part),whether at Mt Lavinia, or Kandy, or Gurutalawa.

Perhaps Mr Davidson will be remembered by the largest number as Cadet Officer, Master-in-charge of the Miniature Rifle Club, and Tennis coach, besides being one of that small rearguard fighting the cause of Greek.This is by no means all he did. In between , he secured his Bachelor's Degree, and Diploma in Education(London), and quietly acquired a sound knowledge of Sinhalese. Besides, he annually cast the Time Table, complicated by the aberrations of the present set up, sacrificing his holiday while others sport.

With it all, he has remained courteous, accessible, a friend. Stern he couldbe: but more oftern a mischievous humor shone through his eyes, and lurked around his mouth. "Devoted and single-minded, without being narrow and fanatical", says Periscope of him.Unfailing in his attendance at Chapel, a finished Lector, he might well be deemed a 'veray parfit gentil (Christian) knight'. He has learnt how to commanded, by first learning how to obey unquestioningly-what- ever be his personal views-, doing his duty according to his conception of it, and leaving the issue to God. The Chaplain once spoke of those who reckon how much they got from College, and of those who gave. If anyone has given himself to College, boy and man, it is Charles Davidson. We salute him, confident that in his new office he will seek only further opportunity for service .

Mr L A H Arndt.