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down, and finished in 1519, without towers, the latter being built by degrees afterwards, and finished in 1608, so that, from the beginning to the completing of it, were no less than 130 years. Henry VIIth was a great benefactor to it, and Bishop Alcock one of the principal designers.
It is in what is called the Gothic taste, and it was built in that period, when the ornamental and florid styles prevailed; but possessing little expressive of those styles, it cannot, I apprehend, be properly described by either of those terms. On the exterior there is no ornament: the tower has no height, and what is remarkable, the pinnacles are rounded off, not very elegantly, with balls; it has a parapet, which encircles the whole building. The gateway is in a good style; the most ancient
; parts of it are those accompanied with the low eastern towers: as a whole, the nave and all the interior component parts being taken, with the exterior, St. Mary's church is considered a light and beautiful building.
The various inscriptions on the monuments here, which are neither numerous nor remarkable, together with various benefactions, given to the parish, as copied from the tables placed between the church and chancel, may be seen in Mr. Blomefield's Collectanea.
The University Library fronts you to the west. It consists of four compartments, that overtop the quadrangle, which composes the public schools. The internal contents relate more immediately to the literature of the place, and externally, only the eastern front is seen, which is a modern building, accompanied with a cloistered portico, balustrade, and other ornaments. The interior is a fine room: and the exterior structure, seen by itself, or in the vicinity of less magnificent objects, would obtain much praise; but surveying it between King's College Chapel and the Senate-house, the eye is not sufficiently at leisure to admire. This part was built in 1755.-A word or two on the public schools.
a Occasional allusions to books and MSS. (and they can only be slight) will be occasionally, and have been already interspersed in this work. The reader is referred for an account of the Sandwich marbles,
You enter the quadrangle that forms the public schools, through the portico of the public library. It consists of different parts, with different designations; nor were they built at the same time, nor at the expense of a single person. The theological school, which was first built, was erected when the University enlarged St. Mary's Church, partly at their own expense; partly by the aid of some noble benefactors, and legacies bequeathed for the service of the University. Of benefactors, the principal was Sir Robert Thorpe, who died about 1372. The trustees, also, of Sir William Thorpe, brother of Sir Robert, assigned some of his monies, over which they had a discretional power, to the same purpose.
This school was finished in the
year 1400. The philosophical school was erected next, being finished about the time with the greater side of the public library, which was over it. They were raised on ground, which, in part, belonged to the University, in part, to a private gentleman, and to the garden of St. Mary's, for which the University paid a yearly rent to Corpus Christi College. The public disputations used to be held before
&c. to the proper Guides, and for an account of the wonderful colossal Head of Ceres, &c. brought by Mr. Cripps, and Dr. Clarke, from Greece, and placed in the vestibule of the Public Library, to the TestiMONIES respecting the statue of Ceres, printed at Cambridge, in 1803.
in a small school that was formerly in the garden of Gonville and Caius College. Afterwards, in 1458, by a decree of Laurence, Bishop of Durham, with the consent of the University, in full congregation, it was provided, that the building, formerly called the school of Terence, should be converted into a school of civil law; and that the lower dialectic schools should be finished. The former was done at the expense of those who studied the law; the latter, by contributions raised in the University; and it was finished in the year 1474.
The small schools, as they were called, were built in 1470, by the subscriptions of members of the University. In one of these, every morning, from eight to nine, masters of arts read lectures, from which questions were formed, and afterwards discussed in utramq. partem, by respondencies and opponencies in the philosophical school; and in the school, in which these lectures were thus formerly given, the vice-chancellor afterwards held his court. This was under that part of the public library, founded by Archbishop Rotheram, and I have thought proper closely to follow the steps of Archbishop Parker, in the above account of the public schoolsa.
Rotheram, Archbishop of York, just mentioned, and Tonstal, bishop of Durham, with various other benefactors, presented the library with many valuable MSS. and some of our most early printed books. It was not, however, of the genius of the times, about the period of the invention of printing, to have large collections, nor to be tenants in perpetuity of all they gotb. But in the progress of time, great additions were made. Till gradually enriched by other presents, more particularly by Dr. Moore's valuable library, purchased, and given to the University, by George I. as well as by purchases made out of their own funds, this library consists now, of more than ninety thousand volumes.
a Hist. Cantab. Acad.
• Caius, (Hist. Cantab. lib. ii. p. 82.) speaking of Archbishop Rotheram's library, says,
“ Quorum magna adhuc superest, magna periit suffurantium vitio :” p. 85, he gives a list of those that remained in his time, 1574, and they amounted only to one hundred and fifty three, including MSS. and printed books. According to the Reliquiæ Bodleianæ, similar, or worse depredations, had been made in the library given about the same time to Oxford University, by Humphrey, Duke of Gloucester. As scarcity of provisions makes people turn thieves, so, from paucity of books, the monks became pilferers; more particularly, when there was nothing but MSS. Hence those frequent anathemas, prefixed to books in ancient monasteries : these were the Priapuses, to drive away the thievish birds.
It appears, from the designs in Mr. Loggan's CANTABRIGIA ILLUSTRATA, that, formerly there was a splendid gateway and pedimenta at the entrance of the schools, together with the arms of the several benefactors to them; and, from Archbishop Parker's account, that in the windows of the schools, there were similar ornaments: these were removed when the public schools were repaired: the glass was taken away, but whither removed is unknown; I speak after Mr. Cole, who is very severe on persons who receive benefactions, but care not how soon their benefactors' names are obliterated.
With respect to the design and elevation of the public schools, Mr. Loggan well observes, they are rather neat than magnificent, and he has some appropriate observations in reference to the true philosophy of such taste for schools. Of the taste, I shall only add, after a writer
a These, I understand, now form an ornament to the house of Sir John Cotton, at Madingley.
of much observation in architecture, that if the public schools and library, which now form this internal quadrangle, (to distinguish it from the grand square,) have not the lofty elevation and splendid display of the five orders, like the schools of Oxford, they have none of their faults a.
a Observations on English Architecture, by Mr. Dallaway.