I'm looking for some fairly specific information about education in the late Victorian era (1890-1896). I have a character who I need to be fairly young and yet have a fairly impressive education. Something similar to a child who winds up getting sent to college earlier than is usual and thus winding up with a degree quite a bit higher than his age would suggest. (I realize this sounds a trifle Mary Sueish, but I need him to be a genius with a good education in order to use him as a counterpoint to a far less advantaged young man who is also highly intelligent.)
So the question is, would any English (or Scottish) university of the time accept a very young but brilliant student? If so which ones and what sort of degrees would be available at the time. I know today he could receive a PhD, but was that available at the time?
Also, was there any sort of Department of Archaeology in any of the universities?
(And, while I'm at it, how did they light and heat the British Museum in 1896?)
ETA: I just want to say all of you rock! Some very useful info and I think I know where to go with this now. (Sad part is, this is a relatively minor part of the whole. But I wanted it right, darn it.)