Stain glass in Christs Church
I had the privilege to visit University of Oxford this past summer. It was magnificent. Very Medieval. You feel a reverence there. You can't help but think of centuries past and all that the University has contributed to the world, through knowledge and education.
University of Oxford is located in the City of Oxford in southern England. It is the oldest surviving university in the English speaking world. It is unclear on the date that Oxford was founded but there is evidence of teaching there as far back as the 11th century. Of course the ancient students were monks. At the time they were basically the only people who could read and write. In 1120 Anglican Monks took over a nunnery located in Oxford and built a chapel that later would become the famous Christs Church Cathedral. By 1167 there were three monastic schools of learning at Oxford, Christs Church being one of them. At this time during the reign of Henry II other students rather than monks were allowed to attend and pursue an education if they showed promise. Many English Scholars were attending the University of Paris until Henry II recalled all those students, forbidding them attendance at the University of Paris. This course of action increased Oxford's student body substantially. Henry II encouraged education and his patronage was important for the development of Oxford as a recognized University.
The original students were not of nobility but humble "men" who showed educational prowess and contributed much to the development of the state through the centuries.
By 1214 Oxford was recognized as an University. Over the last 800 years countless scholars have graduated and contributed much to the ancient and modern world.
Among those are:
A note of interest: Women were not officially admitted to Oxford until 1920!!!!!