Imagini ale paginilor

of the University, and, of course, not touching upon the City. Of the latter, no account has been published since the year 1773^; a circumstance, the consideration of which has induced the present Writer to extend considerably beyond the limits originally proposed that portion of his volume which is allotted to a history and description of

the City.

It may be necessary to add a few words on the plan of this publication. To the Colleges and Halls, and to the several Public Structures of the University, the Stranger is introduced in the course of five “ Walks,” supposed to occupy an equal number of days; a space of time certainly not more than sufficient for even a mere tour of inspection through the University. No

a Sir John Peshall's work made its appearance in

this year.

particular order is observed in accompanying the stranger through the chief buildings of the different collegiate establishments; but to impart, as much as possible, a character of unity to the descriptions, certain particulars respecting the Colleges are omitted in the “Walk” through each. Such are, some of the principal additional benefactions, the dates and dimensions of buildings, the number of individuals composing the several Societies, &c. As however to omit these wholly would be justly censurable, they are given in the first and second numbers of the Appendix; to the former of which has also been referred a very limited selection of the names of eminent men who have re. ceived their education wholly or partially in the respective Colleges and Halls. A concise memoir of the Founder, with a narrative of the leading

circumstances of the foundation of each College, is, however, introduced into the description of each b.

For what may, perhaps, by some readers be deemed too great minuteness in description, the Writer would account by observing, that he has been particularly desirous of giving to his topographical delineations such a distinctness of character, as might enable persons who have never seen Oxford to form, with the assistance of the plan and views, a tolerably accurate notion of the architectural magnificence of a City, the picture of which, as it is thus

b Persons who may not choose to visit the buildings of the University in the order in which they occur in the “ Walks,” or who may not have time to inspect more than a few of the principal Collegiate Establishments, will find the volume equally useful; since, by consulting the Index, the description of any particular College, Hall, or Public Edifice, may be instantly found.

drawn by a poet of vivid imagination and fine taste, is acknowledged not to be flattering:

In this princely land,
Would Clio seek the most distinguish'd seat,
Most blest, where all is so sublimely blest,
That with superior grace o'erlooks the rest ;
Like a rich gem, in circling gold enshrin'd,
Where Isis' waters wind
Along the sweetest shore
That ever felt fair Culture's hands,
Or Spring's embroidered mantle wore,
Lo! where majestic Oxford stands.

Anxious to furnish every species of information which, in a volume descriptive of Oxford, a liberal curiosity might reasonably expect to find, the Writer has prefixed to the “Walks,” by way of introduction, an abstract of the history of the University, an outline of its constitution, and a summary of the regulations respecting the taking of degrees. He has also added to the descriptive


portions of the work, notices of a few places in the neighbourhood of the City; particularly of Blenheim and Nuneham, seats to which few who visit Oxford neglect to extend their tour.

That errors and omissions will be noticed by the informed and attentive reader is but too probable; but for such, if not of magnitude, the Writer will hope to be excused. He will hope this, because he can with truth affirm, that he has spared no pains to render his volume worthy the public acceptance; not indeed as a professed history, but as a comprehensive and faithful sketch of the ancient and present state of Oxford; especially of the University, which, from the well-remembered time of his first becoming acquainted (then, it is true, very imperfectly) with its history, and with the great and inestimable benefits resulting to society

« ÎnapoiContinuați »