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University of Oxford

The University of Oxford (informally referred to as Oxford University or simply Oxford) is a collegiate research university located in Oxford, England, United Kingdom.

Although its exact date of foundation is unclear, there is evidence of teaching as far back as 1096, making it the oldest university in the English-speaking world, and the second-oldest surviving university in the world, after the University of Bologna. It grew rapidly from 1167 when Henry II banned English students from attending the University of Paris. After disputes between students and Oxford townsfolk in 1209, some academics fled north-east to Cambridge, where they established what became the University of Cambridge.

The University is made up from a variety of institutions, including 38 constituent colleges and a full range of academic departments which are organised into four Divisions. Most undergraduate teaching at Oxford is organised around weekly tutorials at the self-governing colleges and halls, supported by classes, lectures and laboratory work provided by university faculties and departments. Oxford has nurtured many prominent alumni, and fifty-eight Nobel Laureates have been affiliated with the university. It regularly contends with Cambridge for the first place in the UK league tables. It has also been the home of two of the most prestigious graduate scholarships, the Rhodes Scholarship, which has brought international students to read at the university for more than a century, and the Clarendon Scholarships.

In post-nominals, the University of Oxford is commonly abbreviated as "Oxon.", from the Latin Universitas Oxoniensis. Since 2007, "Oxf" has been used in official university publications, though this "has been criticized by some readers".

Oxford Colleges

A-Z of Colleges and Permanent Private Halls




  • Canterbury College Oxford, Benedictine monks dependent on Canterbury; founded 1331 (1349) by Simon de Islip, Archbishop of Canterbury; lapsed; refounded 1363-70 by Archbishop Islip; secular 1365; constituted as a monastic college c.1368-70; dissolved c.1539; made part of Christ Church, Oxford 1546/7; rebuilt 1773








  • "'St Albans Hall Benedictine monks founded c.1140; part of Oxford — Gloucester College; now part of Merton College







  • Oxford, St Bernard's College Cistercian monks abbey, founded 1437 (1436) by Henry Chichele, Archbishop of Canterbury, who granted land; dissolved c.1542; refounded as St John's College during the reign of Mary St Mary and St Bernard
  • Oxford, St Mary's College Augustinian Canons Regular priory, founded 1435 by Thomas Holden and his wife Elizabeth; dissolved 1540


  • Durham College Benedictine monks priory cell dependent on Durham, County Durham; founded 1286-91, land purchased by Durham 1286, completed 1291; dissolved 1540; Trinity College founded on site 1554-5 by Sir Thomas Pope and his wife Elizabeth



  • Gloucester College Benedictine monks priory cell dependent on Gloucester, Gloucestershire; founded 1283, house granted by John Giffard; college founded 1291; dissolved 1538; Worcester College founded 1714 under the will of Sir Thomas Cookes Glocester College; Glocester Hall
  • Oxford Whitefriars, earlier siteCamelite Friars founded 1256: site granted by Nicholas de Meules (de Molis); transferred to new site (see immediately below) 1317-18; incorporated into the Benedictines' college, Oxford — Gloucester College, until the Dissolution 1538
  • Oxford Whitefriars Camelite Friars (community founded at earier site (see immediately above) 1256); transferred here 1317-18 by Edward II to his manor, 'the Palace of Beaumont', together with the friars at Sheen, Surrey (Greater London); dissolved 1538; demolished 16th century The King's Hall; the Palace of Beaumont


  • Oxford — London College purportedly Benedictine monks and secular college (in fact secular only) founded after 1421

Oxford Chancellors

Geni Project of Oxford University Chancellors

List of University of Oxford people


Alumni Oxonienses 1500-1714 This volume lists members of the University of Oxford from 1500 to 1714, along with brief biographical details such as ecclesiastical positions held and family relationships among the alumni.