University of Oxford

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A university in Oxford, England, Oxford is the oldest university in the English-speaking world. It is unclear when it was founded, however teaching has been documented as early as 1096. When Henry III forbade English students to study at the University of Paris, Oxford really took off. Oxford consists of a number of separate colleges, and students are enrolled in a specific college. The oldest colleges are University, Balliol and Merton, established between 1249 and 1264. Women entered the university for the first time in 1878. They became members of the University (eligible to receive degrees) in 1920. Women's colleges before integration included Somerville and Lady Margaret Hall. Almost all colleges are now co-ed.

Famous Oxford scholars include:

Oxford's chief rival is Cambridge. Together Oxford and Cambridge are sometimes referred to as Oxbridge. Cambridge is considered stronger in scientific subjects whereas Oxford is stronger in languages and philosophy.

Oxford University is the setting of Gaudy Night, a Lord Peter Wimsey mystery by Dorothy Sayers.

See also Oxford University Press


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