All Souls College, Oxford
|Colleges and halls of the University of Oxford
All Souls College
|College name||The Warden and the College of the Souls of all Faithful People deceased in the University of Oxford1|
|Latin name||Collegium Omnium Animarum|
|Named after||Feast of All Souls|
|Sister college||Trinity Hall, Cambridge|
|Location||High Street, Oxford|
Location of All Souls College within central OxfordCoordinates:
|Blazon||Or, a chevron between three cinquefoils gules.|
All Souls College (full name: The Warden and the College of the Souls of all Faithful People deceased in the University of Oxford1) is one of the constituent colleges of the University of Oxford in England.
Unique to All Souls, all of its members automatically become Fellows, i.e., full members of the College's governing body. It has no undergraduate members, but each year recent graduates of Oxford and other universities compete in "the hardest exam in the world"345 for Examination Fellowships.
It is the third wealthiest college in Oxford, with a financial endowment of £245m (2012).6 The College's only source of revenue is its endowment and it ranks nineteenth among Oxford colleges with respect to total income.7
The College was founded by Henry VI of England and Henry Chichele (fellow of New College and Archbishop of Canterbury), in 1438. The Statutes provided for the Warden and forty fellows – all to take Holy Orders; twenty-four to study arts, philosophy and theology; and sixteen to study civil or canon law. The College's Codrington Library was built with the bequest of Christopher Codrington, sometime governor of the Leeward Islands. Today the College is primarily an academic research institution.
There are now no undergraduate members, but All Souls did once have them, especially around the early 17th century, introduced by Robert Hovenden (who was Warden of the college from 1571 to 1614) to provide servientes. The college decided to get along without them again, although four Bible Clerks remained on the foundation until 1924.8 One such was the Rev. Thomas Forster Rolfe (born 1855), an undergraduate at All Souls from 1874–1878. Joseph Keble (1632–1710) was another undergraduate of the college.
The All Souls library (formally known as the Codrington Library) was founded through a bequest from Christopher Codrington (1668–1710), a Fellow of the College. Christopher Codrington bequeathed books worth £6,000, in addition to £10,000 in currency. This bequest allowed the library to be built and endowed. Christopher Codrington was born in Barbados, and amassed his fortune from plantation slavery.9 The library was completed in 1751, and has been in continuous use since then. The modern library comprises some 187,000 items, about a third of which were published before 1800. The collections are particularly strong in Law and History (especially Military History).10
Built between 1438 and 1442 the chapel remained largely unchanged until the Commonwealth – Oxford having been a Royalist stronghold, suffered a certain amount of the Puritans' wrath. The 42 misericords date from the Chapel's building, and show a family resemblance to the misericords at Higham Ferrers as they were, also, possibly carved by Richard Tyllock.
Christopher Wren was a Fellow from 1653 and in 1658 produced a sundial, which was placed on the South wall of the Chapel, until it was moved to the quadrangle in 1877. During the 1660s a screen was installed, which was based on a design by Wren. However, this screen needed to be rebuilt by 1713. By the mid-19th century, much work was needed and so, today's chapel is heavily influenced by Victorian ideals.
|If intelligence can be measured by exams, the All Souls Fellows by examination are the cleverest people in the country.|
|— New Statesman11|
|It is thought to be the hardest exam in the world.|
|— The Guardian3|
Around 500 Oxford undergraduates who receive a First, and other Oxford students with equivalent results in their bachelor's degrees12 during the previous three years, are eligible to apply for Examination Fellowships of seven years each; several dozen typically do so.413 Two examination fellows are usually elected each year, although the college has awarded a single place in previous years, and made no award on rare occasions.14
- Two are on subjects of the candidates' choice. Options include Classics, English Literature, Economics, History, Law, Philosophy, and Politics. Candidates who choose Classics as their subject have a translation examination on a third day.12
- Two are on general subjects. For each examination candidates choose from a list three questions,16 such as;
About one dozen Examination Fellows are at the college at any one time.4 There are no teaching or research requirements; they can study anything for free at Oxford with room and board.12 As "Londoners" they can pursue approved non-academic careers412 if desired, as long as they pursue academia on a part-time basis and attend weekend dinners at the college during their first academic year.13 As of 2011[update] each Examination Fellow receives a stipend of £14,84217 annually for the first two years; the stipend then varies depending on whether the Fellow pursues an academic career.12
- Leo Amery (1897),18 politician
- Isaiah Berlin (1932),11 philosopher
- George Earle Buckle (1877),18 journalist
- Lord Curzon (1883),1118 Viceroy of India
- Geoffrey Dawson (1898),18 journalist
- Matthew d'Ancona (1989),11 journalist
- Quintin Hogg,19 politician and philosopher
- Douglas Jay (1930),20 politician
- Keith Joseph,5 politician
- Cosmo Gordon Lang (1888),18 Archbishop of Canterbury
- Jeremy Morse,11 banker
- John Redwood (1972),11 politician
- A. L. Rowse (1925),11 historian and poet
- Marcus du Sautoy,5 mathematician
- Lord Chancellor Simon (1897),18 politician
- William Waldegrave (1971),11 politician
- Richard Wilberforce,3 jurist
- Bernard Williams (1951),21 philosopher
- Hilaire Belloc (1895),11 author
- John Buchan (1899),1122 author and Governor General of Canada
- Lord David Cecil,11 author
- H. L. A. Hart (1929, 1930),20 philosopher
- William Holdsworth (1897),18 academic
- Harry Mount (1994),4 journalist
- Ramsay Muir (1897),18 politician
- Alfred Denning (1923),23 jurist
- Hugh Trevor-Roper,11 historian
- Harold Wilson,24 Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
- "conversion" (1979)1526
- "culture" (1914)26
- "diversity" (2001)
- "error" (1993)4
- "harmony" (2007)1516
- "innocence" (1964)3415
- "integrity" (2002)13
- "miracles" (1994)311
- "novelty" (2008)341516
- "possessions" (1925)11
- "reproduction" (2009)151626
- "style" (2005)41516
- "water" (2006)3416
Other categories of fellowship include Senior Research Fellows, Visiting Fellows, Post-Doctoral Research Fellows, Fifty-Pound Fellows (open only to former Fellows no longer holding posts in Oxford) and Distinguished Fellows. There are also many Professorial Fellows who hold their fellowships by reason of their University post.
Every hundred years, and generally on 14 January, there is a commemorative feast after which the fellows parade around the College with flaming torches, singing the Mallard Song and led by a "Lord Mallard" who is carried in a chair, in search of a legendary mallard that supposedly flew out of the foundations of the college when it was being built.27 During the hunt the Lord Mallard is preceded by a man bearing a pole to which a mallard is tied – originally a live bird, latterly either dead (1901) or carved from wood (2001). The last mallard ceremony was in 200128 and the next will be held in 2101. The precise origin of the custom is not known but it dates from at least 1632.29
Past and current fellows of the College have included:
- Leo Amery
- William Reynell Anson
- Andrew Ashworth
- F. W. Bain
- Max Beloff
- Isaiah Berlin
- Margaret Bent
- Tim Besley
- Peter Birks
- William Blackstone
- Malcolm Bowie
- Peter Brown
- Julian Bullard
- Myles Burnyeat
- Lionel Butler
- Raymond Carr
- David Caute
- Alasdair Clayre
- Christopher Codrington
- Gerald Cohen
- Peter Conrad
- George Nathaniel Curzon
- Matthew d'Ancona
- David Daube
- David Dilks
- Michael Dummett
- Edward Evan Evans-Pritchard
- Sheppard Frere
- Robert Gascoyne-Cecil, 3rd Marquess of Salisbury
- Robert Gentilis
- Gabriel Gorodetsky
- Andrew Harvey
- Reginald Heber
- Hensley Henson
- Rosemary Hill
- Quintin Hogg, Baron Hailsham of St Marylebone
- Christopher Hood
- John Hood
- Michael Howard
- E. F. Jacob
- Keith Joseph
- Colin Kidd
- Leszek Kołakowski
- Cosmo Gordon Lang
- T. E. Lawrence
- Edward Chandos Leigh
- Thomas Linacre
- Vaughan Lowe
- Stephen Lushington
- Robert Gwyn Macfarlane
- James Rochfort Maguire
- Noel Malcolm
- John Mason
- Edward Mortimer
- Max Müller
- Patrick Neill, Baron Neill of Bladen
- Brownlow North
- Avner Offer
- David Pannick
- Derek Parfit
- Anthony Quinton
- Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan
- Robert Recorde
- John Redwood
- A. L. Rowse
- Peter Salway
- Graeme Segal
- Amartya Sen
- Patrick Shaw-Stewart
- Gilbert Sheldon
- John Simon, 1st Viscount Simon
- Boudewijn Sirks
- Alfred C. Stepan
- Joseph E. Stiglitz
- Charles Taylor
- Adam Thirlwell
- Guenter Treitel
- John Vickers
- William Waldegrave, Baron Waldegrave of North Hill
- Martin Litchfield West
- Charles Algernon Whitmore
- Richard Wilberforce
- Bernard Williams
- E. F. L. Wood, 1st Earl of Halifax
- Llewellyn Woodward
- Patrick Wormald
- Christopher Wren
- Crispin Wright
- Edward Young
- R. C. Zaehner
The gates on Radcliffe Square
A view of All Souls' College quadrangle from its Radcliffe Square gate
All Souls Quad abutting High Street
All Souls College as viewed from New College Lane
View from St Mary the Virgin's tower (with All Souls on the right)
- "The modern college".
- "Student Numbers 2012". Oxford University Gazette. 6 March 2013. p. 409. Retrieved 2 October 2013.
- Shepherd, Jessica. "The word on Oxford University's All Souls fellows exam is: axed" The Guardian, 14 May 2010.
- Mount, Harry. "All Souls, Oxford should continue to put genius to the test" The Daily Telegraph, 19 May 2010.
- "Is the All Souls College entrance exam easy now?" The Guardian, 17 May 2010.
- Finance, All Souls College, Oxford.dead link
- History page 3, All Souls College, Oxford (accessed 11 March 2008).
- James Walvin, Slavery and the Building of Britain, BBC.
- "All Souls.ac.uk, Codrington Library". www.all-souls.ac.uk.
- Mount, Harry. "A few things pointy-heads should know" New Statesman, 4 October 1999.
- "Examination Fellowships 2010" All Souls College, Oxford
- Wainwright, Tom. "The most glittering prize" The Daily Telegraph, 8 January 2005.
- "The Soul of All Souls" TIME, 19 May 1961.
- Lyall, Sarah. "Oxford Tradition Comes to This: ‘Death’ (Expound)" The New York Times, 27 May 2010.
- "Sample Fellowship Exam, Oxford University's All Souls College" The New York Times, 27 May 2010.
- "Sir William Anson"
- "B: Appeasement and public opinion". The Churchill Era. Churchill College, Cambridge. Retrieved 21 May 2012.
- Lacey, Nicola (2006). A life of H.L.A. Hart: the nightmare and the noble dream. Oxford University Press. pp. 41, 43. ISBN 0-19-920277-X.
- "Bernard Williams (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)". Plato.stanford.edu. Retrieved 23 April 2013.
- Godine, David R. and Andrew Lownie. John Buchan: the Presbyterian cavalier (1995), pp. 60–61.
- "Lord Denning, OM". The Daily Telegraph (London). 6 March 1999.
- Pimlott, Ben (1992). Harold Wilson. HarperCollins. p. 61. ISBN 0002151898.
- Hensher, Philip. "'Comedy' was the word for my exam" The Independent, 24 May 2010.
- Little, Reg. "One-word exam ending" The Oxford Times, 20 May 2010.
- British Folk Customs http://www.information-britain.co.uk/customdetail.php?id=59
- Daily Telegraph 15 January 2001: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1314859/Mallard-leads-Oxford-fellows-a-merry-dance.html
- HOLE, Christina, English Custom and Usage, London, Batsford, 1941, p.28: "...we know that the custom existed at least as early as 1632, for in that year Archbishop Abbot censured the College for a riot "in pretence of a foolish Mallard".
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