The Department of General Literature and Science came into being in 1839 in response to the need for a greater differentiation of the syllabus for students of the Senior Department at King's College London. As its name suggests, it constituted a broad faculty or grouping of subjects and classes that provided a core liberal syllabus in the arts and sciences available to all students of King's, including Medical students. Principal subjects included English Literature, Theology, Modern History, Classics, Modern Languages and Mathematics, but later instruction covered subjects as diverse as Geology, Law, Political Economy and Oriental Languages. In 1861 the department was divided into two sections, the General Section and the Oriental Section before dividing further into the Classical Division, Modern Division and the Oriental Section in 1869. The department was reorganised again in 1877 into the Classical Division, Modern Division, Indian Civil Service and Science Division and then renamed as the Department of General Literature and Science in 1878 when the Civil Service Department was opened. The division between General Literature and Science Departments, that took place in 1888, foreshadowed the replacement of General Literature by the new Faculty of Arts in 1893.