Constitution of the Philolexian Society


Section I. This Society shall be known as the ''Philolexian Society."

Section II. Its object shall be to improve its members in Oratory, Composition and Forensic Discussion.


Section I. All undergraduates in the University, except freshmen, shall be eligible to membership.

Section II. Admission shall be by competitive trial only, as pro aided in the By-Laws. Three negative votes shall be sufficient to A\ defeat any candidate for membership.

Section III. Immediately on his election, the successful candidate shall be notified thereof by the secretary and required to attend one of the next three meetings subsequent to his election. Failure to do so will invalidate his election.

Section IV. The rejection of a candidate for membership shall not be reconsidered within three months.

Section V. Active membership shall be limited to forty men.

Section VI. Any member of this Society, upon graduating, may, upon application, receive a certificate of Honorary Graduate Membership, provided three-fourths of the members present concur.

Section VII. Any member who shall leave college before he receives his degree may also obtain a certificate of Honorary Graduate Membership when his class shall graduate.

Section VIII. The following shall be the certificate of Honorary Graduate Membership:


Neo Eboraci Anno Domini MDCCCII. instituta, omnes
ad quos hae litterae praesentes venerint certiores facit
(the name written here)
adulescentem virtuta atque humanitate insignem socium
nobis jampridem adscitum esse, et sese tam studiis liberalibus
deditum quam moribus ingenuis ornatum ostendisse;
quae ob merita ad socii honorarii gradum nunc admitti.
In cuius rei testimonium, Nos Praeses Scribaque a
secretis, sociorum nomine chirographa nostra, sigillumque
societatis hisce litteris affigenda curavimus.

Section IX. Honorary Graduate Members shall be entitled to all privileges of regular members, except voting or competition for prizes, and they shall be exempt from the performance of duties.

Section X. Members of the Faculty and instructors in the University and persons of literary distinction may in like manner be elected to honorary membership.


Section I. The officers of the Society shall be a president, a vice president, a secretary and a treasurer.

Section II. The President shall perform the usual duties of his office, be empowered to call special meetings of the Society, and possess the usual prerogatives of his office.

Section III. The Vice-President shall, in the absence of the President, preside, and, at the request of five members, call special meetings.

Section IV. It shall be the duty of the Secretary to keep the minutes of the Society in books provided for the purpose, to keep a roll of the members, which he shall call at the opening of each meeting, noting those who are absent, to place upon the minutes the names of all prize-winners together with the names of their respective prizes, to transcribe upon the books all new laws and amendments, subscribing his name and the date thereof, to notify committees of their appointment and the duties assigned to them, to notify candidates of their admission to membership, and, in general, to perform all other duties which the Society may require.

Section V. It shall be the duty of the Treasurer to receive all Philolexian Annalsclue the Society, anti make all ordinary disbursements to keep a correct account book and make a written report of the state of tile funds when called upon to do so. He shall not pay out any moneys of the Society, except for the ordinary expenses' unless on order of the Society signed by the President.

Section VI. The officers of the Society shall be elected semi-anuually at the fi at regular meetings, of the molltlls of January and May, respectively, or as near thereto as the Society shall deem convenieut. l hey shall be inaugurated not later shall a week thereafter and shall serve until the inauguration of their successors. In case any office becomes vacant, the vacancy shall be immediately filled by a new election.

Section VII. All elections shall be by ballot and shall be determined by a majority of the votes east.


Section I. The Standing Committees shall consist of a Program Committee, a Membership Committee, a Finance Committee and a Committee on Archives and Records.

Section II. They shall perform the duties set forth in the By-Laws.

Article V. Removals

Section I. Any officer of the Society may be removed, and any member expelled, by a two-thirds vote of the entire enrolled membership. But in all such cases the accused shall, at least ten days previously, receive from the Secretary a statement of the charges together with the names of the persons preferring them. He shall have the benefit of witness and of a defense, personal or by counsel.

Section II. The same charges may not be entertained twice, and, in lieu of a definite law to the point, a two-thirds majority of the entire enrolled membership shall be necessary to determine an offense to the Society.

Section III. Prosecution shall be conducted by the President, his appointee, or as the Society may direct.

Article VI. PRIZES

Section I. All orations delivered and all compositions presented before the Society by its members are the property of the Society, and the Society may require them to be deposited with the committee on Archives and Records.

Section II. All successful candidates for prizes shall deliver a copy of their orations or compositions to the Secretary of the University or any other person designated by the Society before he comes into possession of the prize.


Section I. Every proposed alteration or amendment to this constitution or the By-Laws shall be presented to the President, who shall submit the same to the Society for two consecutive regular meetings, and cause the same to be posted on the bulletin board of the Society for one week. At the second meeting a two-thirds majority vole shall be necessary to give it effect.

Section II. A By-Law may, in case of emergency, be suspended pro tempore by a two-thirds vote.


Chapter I

Section I. This Society shall hold meetings every Wednesday during the University term at eight o'clock.

Section II. The foregoing section is subject to alteration on motion.

Section III. A qurorum for the transaction of business shall consist of twelve members.

Section IV. The order of business shall be:

  1. Society called to order.
  2. Roll call.
  3. Initiation of new members.
  4. Reading of minutes.
  5. Reports of officers and committees.
  6. Unfinished business.
  7. New bushiness.
  8. Elections.
  9. Literary program.
  10. Adjournment.

Chapter II

The President shall, at each meeting, appoint a member to act as critic of the literary exercises.

Chapter III

Section I. Dues of one dollar per year shall be collected by the from each member at the first meeting of each college year.

Section II. A member absent for four consecutive regular one failing to perform literary duties, shall ipso facto forfeit membership unless he shall submit written excuses for such absences, satisfactory to the Society, within one week after the fourth absence.

Section III. The foregoing section shall not apply to any member who, having been present at a majority of the meetings in any half year or having represented the Society on a debating team, is actively engaged in journalistic, literary or forensic work on the Campus.

Section IV. When any member is about to speak or debate he shall address himself to the chair.

Section V. No member shall speak for more than ten minutes or more than once upon a single subject, without unanimous consent.

Section VI. In the admission, suspension or expulsion of members, the Society shall vote by secret ballot.

Section VII. Proxy votes shall in no case be receivable.

Section VIII. Following election to the Society, a member shall pay to the Treasurer his dues for the current year and an initiation fee of one dollar.

Section IX. Certificates of membership shall be presented to all members of the Society.

Chapter IV

Section I. The Vice-President and two other members to be elected at the same time with him shall constitute the Program Committee. Said committee shall arrange the literary exercises for each meeting, and be empowered to appoint members to perform them, and shall post the names of said members upon the bulletin board of the Society.

Section II. The Membership Committee shall consist of three members to be elected at the same time as the officers of the Society.

Section III. On application by the candidate or on recommendation by' any member of the Society, the Membership Committee shall consider and report, as soon as possible, on the advisability of admitting any man to membership in the Society. The Committee shall take into consideration particularly the literary ability and personality of the candidate as well as the likelihood of his benefiting the Society if elected. Reports shall be specific as to the final decision of tile committee and the grounds for such holdings shall be stated. The sentiment of the members present regarding each candidate shall then be ascertained by open discussion or by secret ballot as may seem best under the circumstances. Three or more negative votes shall be sufficient to bar any candidate from further consideration Society, except as provided in Article II, Section IV, of the Constitution. If there are less than three negative votes the Society shall instruct the Membership Committee as to its further action; and such further action shall be the communication to the candidate of the fact that he has been voted down or that he is invited to attend a regular meeting and speak for admission. It shall be the understanding that the members in general are favorably disposed toward any candidate who is invited to speak before them and will not vote him down unless his address is of such a character that he is manifestly unworthy of admission to the Society. Candidates shall be excused immediately after they have spoken before the Society and shall be voted on under unfinished business at the same meeting. The Secretary shall notify all such candidates of the results of the election within two days of the meeting at which they were voted upon.

Section IV. The Committee on Archives and Records shall consist of three members, one of whom shall be the Secretary, ex-officio, and the other two of whom shall be elected in May to serve for one year. The Committee on Archives and Records shall be entrusted with the archives of the Society. It shall collect, compile and publish, in May of each year, at the expense of the Society, all prize orations and essays of the University term, the inaugural addresses of the Presidents, and other material, at its own discretion or the order of the Society; and further it shall take care that the records of the Society, the minute books and treasurer's books, when filled, be filed among the archives.

Section V. In the absence of further regulations, all nominations for elections shall appear in Spectator at least two days before he election.

Section VI. The Finance Committee shall consist of the Treasurer, ax-officio, who shall act as chairman, and two other members of the Society to be elected with the other officers and committees. Its duties shall be to keep a careful watch.over all endowments and other prizes belonging to the Society, to see that such moneys are lawfully disbursed and expended for the stated purposes at the proper times and to the proper persons, and in general it shall be the duty of the committee to watch over and care for the funds pertaining to the Society.

The Philolexian Society
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