“That sweet city with her dreaming spires”
Matthew Arnold – Professor of Poetry at Oxford
All Souls College
Exeter college chapel
The Bodleian library
In the distance it is possible to make out the river Thames meandering through the trees on the right
We took our granddaughter out for a birthday lunch, followed by a steep climb to the top of St. Mary the Virgin tower, before she had to leave us for an afternoon tutorial. Last week the marquees were going up in the college grounds ready for their May Balls.
The grass is mown at Trinity College ready for the marquee men to arrive.
Hertford Bridge links the old and new quadrangles of Hertford College – often referred to as the Bridge of Sighs although it actually has a stronger resemblance to the Rialto Bridge
Delicious lunch at the University Church of St. Mary the Virgin from within their Vaults, but warm enough for us to eat at a table in their garden overlooked by the Bodleian Library.
Sunlight filtering through the chancel windows – St. Mary the Virgin
If you find yourself in Oxford this tower is the one to climb as it affords a complete 360° view over the whole of the city.
A stroll around the University Botanic Gardens
Magdalen College tower opposite the Botanical gardens
On 1st May the day starts early at 6 am with Magdalen College choir singing the hymn ‘Hymnus Eucharisticus’ from the top of this tower, a 500 year old tradition. Large crowds gather to watch and this year our granddaughter rose early to be present. There is a party atmosphere and general revelry, Morris dancing and impromptu music. Many are still formally attired following all night balls.
May morning by William Holman Hunt depicting the event on top of Magdalen tower – Lady Lever Gallery