The towns of Oxford and Cambridge have some of the finest buildings in Britain.
They are famous for their universities, the oldest in England. All the students live and study in colleges. Cambridge has 31 colleges and Oxford has 39. Oxford’s first college started in 1249. Cambridge’s first college opened in 1281.
Before the 12th century, people who wanted a good education went to the Sorbonne in Paris. Then, in 1167, all English students in Paris moved to Oxford. Some people say King Henry II told them to move. Others say the French threw them out! The students went to study in Oxford monasteries and that was the beginning of Oxford University.
The Church was very important in Oxford and Cambridge for many years. For example, until the 19th century the university teachers were almost like priests and they couldn’t marry.
Women started studying later than men. The first women’s college at Cambridge
opened in 1869 and at Oxford in 1878. Today, three Cambridge colleges and one Oxford college are for women only. Men and women study together in the others
Every year the universities compete in a rowing race over 7 kilometres of the Thames. The first race was in 1829 and it became a yearly race in 1839. All the students really want their university to win!
People can stay in rooms at Oxford and Cambridge when the students are on holiday. Some rooms are modern but the older rooms are more interesting (and more uncomfortable!). They often have low ceilings, small windows and a view of the square in the middle of the college. Imagine sleeping in the same room as an ex Prime Minister or eating at the same table as Lawrence of Arabia!
для контролю знань і залучення учнів
до активної роботи у класі та вдома