On 10 June 1917 Sir Frederic Kenyon,1 President of the British Academy and Director of the British Museum, made a request to William Sanday for a paper for a forthcoming meeting of the Academy.

Any subject would be welcome, but if you have nothing else ready to hand, there is one subject of a general kind which, it seems to me might well be considered by the Academy and which no one could give a better lead than you. I mean the question of international scholarship after the war. Might we not be usefully preparing our minds for the difficult questions which will arise in this connection when peace is declared?