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The Church of this College, which is the Cathedral of the diocese, is on the east of the grand quadrangle, a venerable structure, originally the Church of St. Frideswide's Monastery; on or near the site of which the College is erected. It was finished before the year 1200. The roof of the Choir is a beautiful piece of stone-work, put up by Cardinal Wolsey, who also rebuilt the Spire. The east window was painted by Mr. Price, senior, of London, after a design of Sir James Thornhill, representing the Epiphany. In the Dormitory, which is an aile on the north side of the Choir, is the tomb of St. Frideswide, who died A. D. 739. At the north corner of the west end is a window curiously painted, representing St. Peter delivered out of Prison by the Angel: beside the principal figures, there are a considerable number of Roman soldiers in various sleeping attitudes, admirably well drawn: and, though a very small portion of the glass is stained, the colours are brilliant, and the whole appears very lively. It was painted by J. Oliver, in his eighteenth year, and given by him to the College in the year 1700. In this and other parts of the Church are some monuments, no less remarkable for their elegant inscriptions than their beautiful structure. In the aile, south of the choir, is a good portrait in the first window of Robert King, who was the last Abbot of Oseney, and the first Bishop of Oxford.
In the Tower are ten celebrated bells, brought from Oseney Abbey, as was the great bell called Tom, before mentioned.
In this Church Choir Service is performed every day at ten and five; except on Sundays and Holidays, when it is at eight in the morning.
Three sides of Peckwater Court are uniform, designed by Dr. Aldrich, then Dean, as eminent for his skill in architecture as for his knowledge in most other branches. Each side contains 15 windows in the front. The lower story is rustic, in which are three entrances. The second story, and the attic above it, are contained in the height of the Ionic order, which rests upon the rustic. Over the five middle windows in each side is a beautiful pediment, which projects, supported by three-quarter columns of the same order, as the entablature and balustrade of the other parts are by pilasters.—On the fourth side of this Court is a magnificent Library, 141 feet long, built in the Corinthian order, the pillars of which are four feet in diameter. Underneath was intended a piazza opening to the square, with seven arches, and an ascent of three steps running the whole length of the building. This design has been since altered, for the more convenient reception of the great collection of books belonging to the College. The wainscotting, book-cases, and stucco work, as well on the staircase as in the rooms of the Library, are very highly finished, particularly the beautiful festoons in stucco, charged with symbolical imagery, severally representing the particular branch of literature contained beneath. At each end are marble busts, one of Dr. Boulter, late Primate of Ireland; the other of Dr. Freind, late Master of Westminster School. In the lower apartments, both to the right and left, are deposited the celebrated collection of Pictures given to the College by General Guise; among which are some from the collection of King Charles I. A portrait by Titian. The Flight into Egypt, by Guido Reni. The Family of the Caracci's represented in a Butcher's Shop, the most celebrated performance of Annibal Caracci. Two Nativities, by Titian. Jesus and St. John embracing, by Raphael. A Nativity, by Raphael. The Fable of Ericthonius delivered to the Nymphs to be educated, by Salvator Rosa. Venus and Cupid, by Titian. St. Francis in a vision, supported by Angels, by Annibal Caracci. An Ecce Homo, by Ludovico Caracci. A Medusa's Head, by Rubens. The Pale of an Altar, with figures larger than the life, by Corregio. Two half-lengths of Women, by Domenichino.