The University Of Oxford Essay Research Paper — страница 2

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Friesland was the first student to attend Oxford from overseas in 1190 (History 1). His arrival marked the beginning of Oxford University s tradition of international scholarships. These are just a few of the notable leaders who brought about great things to Oxford University. Oxford University s relations with authority were something like a parent and a spoiled child. Whatever the University wanted they pretty much received. One of the University s many privileges was the custody over bread, ale, and weights and measures (Leff 88). In 1231 Henry III forced the burgesses to lower the rents. This was the first but not the last time a king stepped in to lower rents in order to help the students. In 1311 Edward II ordered the sheriff to place any student who had been taken into

custody into a separate jail from the townspeople (Leff 88). This is another example of the uncontrollable privileges being given to the University and its students. Edward III showed his strong preferential treatment on March 5, 1355 when he placed the masters and scholars of Oxford University under the protection of the crown (Leff 1). The only form of real discipline that any king showed towards the students of Oxford University was in 1231, when Henry III ordered the expulsion of any student who was not on tract for a master (Leff 83). These are only a few of the numerous occasions of the king s bias treatment against the townspeople, and in favor of the University. The chancellor of Oxford University was given many privileges by the kings, which made him the most powerful

man in the city of Oxford. The kings were so much in favor of the University that they would take the chancellor s word over the mayor or sheriff on almost any occasion (Leff 88). In 1244 Henry III extended the chancellors power to all cases of rents, and prices of food and movables, which involved scholars (Leff 83). King Edward III s charter on June 27, 1355 gave the chancellor sole jurisdiction over the items of bread, ale, weights and measures, with the power to punish transgressors (Leff 91). The chancellor position at Oxford University was given its biggest responsibility in 1309 by King Edward II, who gave the chancellor the right to put burgesses and other townspeople in his own separate court (Leff 88). This privilege was expanded even more when Edward III made the

chancellor s court free from royal interference and no worry of being charged with false imprisonment. The kings of England made Oxford University s chancellor one of the most powerful and authoritative men in England. The townspeople of Oxford University were unjustly treated and abused in order for the students to have better lives. In 1305 Edward I banned the people of Oxford s annual town tournaments and joust because it made to much noise, which disturbed the students studies (Leff 88). This is one example of how the University s needs and wishes always came foremost to the towns. In 1248 Henry III made the town responsible for the murder of a scholar, without even investigating into the incident to try and find the truth (Leff 83). There was another occurrence of a student

getting killed in 1297. However, this time the townspeople who were responsible for the murder were found and punished, but still the town had to pay the University a two hundred pound compensation fee (Leff 85). These are a few of the instances of the University getting what ever it could out of the town, with little to no justice for the townspeople of Oxford. The burgesses of Oxford were very unjustly and improperly treated. Often the students of the University would commit major crimes against the townspeople but only receive minor punishment. One example of this occurred in 1244 when forty-five students were imprisoned for attacking the Jews but were soon released under the chancellor s orders (Leff 83). Even when the burgesses were merely defending themselves they were

considered to have committed crimes and were severely punished for them. One example of this is in 1209 when a scholar murdered a woman and in return the townspeople executed several scholars (Leff 78). In punishment for their actions these townspeople were excommunicated and the town had to pay retribution for the students deaths (Leff 78). The burgesses believed that Oxford was a hotbed of criminals and clerks (Leff 86). The burgesses of the city of Oxford described their situation in this way: …if a clerk wound or beat or does violence to a layman, for which he is imprisoned by the bailiff, he will at once be delivered by the chancellor without writing [written security], and if a layman ill-treats a clerk he will be imprisoned by the chancellor, and will be there a month or