Education: The Golden Key

In the Apollo room of the Raleigh Tavern in Williamsburg, Va., a group of students from the College of William and Mary met one night in 1776 to form a new fraternity. The fraternity was to be nothing like other roistering student societies of the day. It was to have as its motto the first letters of three Greek words: 3>io(ro(f)la Btou KvfiepvrjTijs ("Love of wisdom the guide of life"). The letters, chosen that night, have remained stamped on U.S. higher education ever since—Phi Beta Kappa.

Last week at William and Mary, local PBKs were meeting again. But unlike most annual...

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