While walking around Cambridge University in England, I was fascinated by the details found on the buildings. One that was especially detailed was St. John’s College. The college was established in 1511 by Lady Margaret Beaufort, and believe it or not the full, formal name of the college is “The Master, Fellows and Scholars of the College of St John the Evangelist in the University of Cambridge”. That’s quite a mouthful isn’t it? The college’s alumni include nine Nobel Prize winners, six Prime Ministers, three archbishops, at least two princes, and three Saints.
This is a photo of the Great Gate. According to Wikipedia, “St John’s distinctive Great Gate follows the standard contemporary pattern employed previously at Christ’s College and Queen’s College. The gatehouse is crenelated and adorned with the arms of the foundress, Lady Margare Beaufort. Above these are displayed her ensigns, the Red Rose of Lancaster and Portcullis. The College Arms are flanked by curious creatures known as yales, mythical beasts with elephants’ tails, antelopes’ bodies, goats’ heads, and swivelling horns. Above them is a tabernacle containing a socle figure of St John the Evangelist, an Eagle at his feet and symbolic, poisoned chalice in his hands. The doors date from 1665-6, and the fan vaulting above was constructed by William Swayne, the master mason of King’s College Chapel”. Like I said two days ago, college or castle? Sorry about the people’s heads in the picture, but it does help to give you an idea how huge these buildings are.