Sunday, June 09, 2024

Oxford Life - Glossary

Oxford in the early ‘70s was very different from what I imagine it is now. This is the tale of my time in this august institution.

Table of Contents:


Oxford has many strange jargon words. Below are some either used in the blog or others I remember from my time there.

Me punting circa 1976 standing at the "wrong end".

Where undergraduates purchased their meal tickets. Run by the College Butler who is responsible amongst other items for managing the College’s collection of historic silverware and managing the college wine cellars.
Short for Cantabrigiensis, the Latin for Cambridge.
Colloquial name for Saint Catherine‘s College.
A normal student who does not have a scholarship or exhibition (see also Exhibitioner and Scholar).
A student who did well enough in exams to be awarded an Exhibition - a small monetary grant (see also Commoner and Scholar).
A first year undergraduate. As far as I know there are no special terms for the second and third year students, unlike the US terms Sophomore and Senior.
Exams taken at the end of your third year.
The second term of the academic year in the New Year.
A college whose name in Oxford is pronounced Maudlin as in "self-pityingly or tearfully sentimental".
An admission ceremony ceremony at which new students are entered into the register of the university, at which point they become members of the university, see Matriculation:United_Kingdom.
The first term of the academic year, before Christmas.
Milk round
The series of visits made at a particular time of the year by large companies to colleges and universities to discuss giving jobs to students after they have finished their education.
Honour Moderations are a set of examinations at the end of the first part of some degree courses (e.g., Greats or Literae Humaniores).
Norrington Table
An annual ranking of the colleges, see [Wikipedia:Norrington Table].
A portmanteau word for Ox[ford] and [Cam]bridge.
Short for the Latin "Universitas Oxoniensis" used as a post nominal e.g. Mark McLellan M.A. (Oxon).
Preliminary examinations, taken at the end of the first year, see [Wikipedia:Prelim:University_of_Oxford].
A flat bottomed boat propelled by a person standing at the back using a long pole. In Cambridge the punter stands on a flat platform, in Oxford the boat is turned round with the flat portion at the front and the punter stands on the sloping slats. Both Universities agree that the other is standing at the "wrong end".
Research Laboratory for Archaeology and the History of Art where I did my fourth year, Part II, research project. See [RLAHA].
A student who did well enough in exams to be awarded a scholarship - a more sizeable monetary grant (see also Commoner and Exhibitioner).
aka Finals. Exams at the end of your third year.
A curious habit found when dining in some colleges. See [Oxford Life - 04 Food].
Housekeeper and, in our case, part-time barmaid (see picture below).
Sporting your oak
A closed outer, oak door indicated that either you were away or you were in and not to be disturbed because you were studying hard or you had a guest. See [Oxford Life - 03 Accommodation].
Tanner Scheme
A scheme whereby Hertford would offer places to pupils based on an interview, recommendation from the school and predicted grades. See: [Tanner Scheme].
Academic garb required to be worn on formal occasions, see [Wikipedia:Academic dress of the University of Oxford].
Teddy Hall
Colloquial name for [St. Edmund Hall].
The Broad
Local term for Broad Street.
The High
Local term for High Street.
The third year term of the academic year.

Our scout and part time barmaid whose name eludes me.


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