He regarded a multiplication in the number of colleges or the uncontrolled proliferation of all sorts of ideas as a source of spiritual danger: ‘If learning were profaned by being made available to all and sundry, it would be found that there were more people capable of creating doubts than of resolving them, and many would show themselves more apt in opposing truth than in defending it,’ he observed in 1625.
And in a footnote to the same, “In 1611 Bacon wrote to James I as follows:”
Concerning the advancement of learning, I do not subscribe to the opinion…that, for grammar schools, there are already too many…The great number of schools which are in your Highness’s realm doth cause a want, and likewise an overthrow—both of them inconvenient and one of them dangerous; for by means thereof they find want in the country and towns, both of servants for husbandry and of apprentices for trade; and on the other side there being more Scholars bred than the State can prefer and employ…it must needs fall out the many persons will be bred unfit for other vocations and unprofitable for that in which they were bred up, which fill the realm full of indignant, idle and wanton people… [p 478; ellipses original]
In re education today: plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose?
Richelieu’s observation came from his Maximes D’Etat, Or Testament Politique, p. 169 at that link.