The Grounds and Surrounds around Oxford

The university town of Oxford was called the City of Dreaming Spires by the poet Matthew Arnold in his poem Thyris:

“And that sweet City with her dreaming spires, She needs not June for beauty’s heightening, Lovely all times she lies, lovely to-night!”

Oxford is indeed a beautiful town, and what better way to nod in agreement with Arnold then by sharing the beauty of the city through the power of modern technology?

The historical street of Oxford University is perhaps High Street, home to some of the oldest colleges in the University – St Edmunds Hall, Merton College, Oriel College, Brasenose College and Magdelen College, centred around the University Church of St Mary the Virgin.

Located pependicular to High Street, on Catte Street are some of the most historical parts of the institution, including the Radcliffe Camera,

the Bodleian Library,

and the Bridge of Sighs.

Oxford may be famous for its university, but it is more than the university, there is indeed a whole town around it, but if there is a street that defines Oxford beyond the University, that would be George Street and the square around it. Here there are no colleges, but cafes (including a social enterprise called Cafe from Crisis), restaurants, shops and the like.

A little south of the George Street is Market Street (I like how straightforward the nomenclature is), home to the historical Oxford Covered Market.

Being a university also gives Oxford the wonderful advantage of being home to some amazing museums – that are generally free for entry, for example the Musuem of Natural History.

Now there was also a time before Oxford was home to an established university, back in the 1000s, Oxford was a land granted to the Norman nobleman Robert D’Oyly after the successful Norman Conquest of England. To show off Norman dominance over the Anglo-Saxons, castles were directed to be built, larger structures to dominate the skyline and show off the power of the dominance. It was important for three centuries and later on lost military importance – becoming in turn a site for administration and a prison. It is now a musuem-cafe.

ON THE MAP (Oxford Covered Market)

ON THE MAP (Oxford University of Natural History)

ON THE MAP (Oxford Castle)


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