An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in the City of Oxford. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1939.
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(15) Magdalen College stands on the N. side of High Street, immediately W. of the river Cherwell. The walls are of local Oxfordshire stone and the roofs are covered with slates and lead. The college was founded in 1458 by William of Waynflete, Bishop of Winchester. The enclosing walls were built in 1467–73 and the buildings were set out in 1473 to include some of the buildings of St. John's Hospital; the 13th-century chapel of this hospital is still incorporated in the range fronting the street and the Kitchen is probably a building of late 13th or 14th-century date. The foundation-stone (in the high altar) was laid on May 5th 1474 and work was in progress in this year on the Chapel, Hall and Chambers; in 1475 a contract was entered into, with William Orchard, mason, for the W. window of the chapel and the windows of the Cloister; the same mason contracted for further work on the chapel, the construction of towers, etc. In 1480 the buildings were in occupation and the Grammar School, later known as Magdalen Hall, was begun. Magdalen Hall formed a separate entity and occupied buildings on this site till after a serious fire in 1820, when the Hall was moved (in 1822) to Hertford College. The old President's Lodging was in course of erection in 1485–8; in 1487–8 the Muniment Tower was roofed and in 1490 the S. cloister was finished. The corner-stone of the Bell Tower was laid in 1492 and it was completed about 1509; William Raynold, mason, amongst others, worked on the tower. The Range, incorporating the hospital-chapel, was built early in the 16th century and the range E. of the bell-tower may be of the same period. A building called the Gallery or Election Chamber was built to the N. of the President's Lodging c. 1520–30 and destroyed in 1770, and the President's Lodging itself was altered in 1530–1; to this date probably belongs the surviving ancient portion of the building. The N. wing of the range E. of the bell-tower was perhaps built early in the 17th century and the adjoining S. range altered at the same time; some reconstruction was also done in the range W. of the hospital-chapel. The Library was re-roofed in 1609–10. The surviving portion of the Grammar Hall was built probably in 1614, the date on the W. front. Between 1629 and 1635 a new gateway, ascribed to Inigo Jones, was built to the W. of the chapel and the Range S. of the kitchen was built. The hospital-chapel was converted into chambers in 1665–6. The New Buildings on the N. of the site were begun in 1733, from the designs of Edward Holdsworth, but the scheme for rebuilding the rest of the college was abandoned; in 1783 West's Building was erected on the site of the Divinity Reader's Lodging on the Cherwell, E. and N.E. of the kitchen. The chapel was re-roofed by Wyatt in 1790 and the N. front of the cloister was re-built on the old lines c. 1823; other rebuilding on the E. and S. sides took place in 1825 and 1827. In 1822 the college took over the site and buildings of Magdalen Hall. The chapel was restored by Cottingham in 1829–34 and in 1844 the Inigo Jones gateway was taken down and a new gateway built by Pugin. In 1851 the New School-room was finished and St. Swithun's Buildings were erected in 1880–4, partly on the site of Magdalen Hall; this new building involved the destruction of the Pugin gateway and a new gateway was built on the High Street. The President's Lodging was re-built in 1886–8. The New School-room has been converted into a Library and in 1931 the new Long Wall Quadrangle was completed.
Architectural Description—The Range fronting the High Street has the Bell-Tower towards the E. end with a short wing to the E. and a long wing to the W. of it; at the W. end is the modern Gateway. The W. wing is mainly of early 16th-century date incorporating the lower part of the 13th-century building of St. John's Hospital in the middle; to the W. of this, the range may have been partly reconstructed early in the 17th century. The wing, generally, is of two storeys with attics and is finished with a restored embattled parapet. On the S. front the range is ashlar-faced; the windows of both floors are of cinquefoil-headed lights with moulded reveals and labels and have all been more or less restored; the blocked doorway towards the E. end is of the 17th century and has moulded jambs and four-centred arch with a double label; the parapet-string has a series of carvings of grotesque figures, beasts, mitre, fleur-de-lis and foliage, most of them old; the dormers and chimney-stacks are modern. The W. end, has on the first floor, a restored oriel-window representing an ancient feature; in the gable is an oriel-window of two cinquefoil-headed lights and above it a modern or much restored niche with a carved head, brought from elsewhere. The N. front is ashlar-faced, except the part incorporating the earlier building which is of rubble and has a straight joint at its E. end. The windows, W. of the chapel, are probably of the 17th century but are generally similar to those on the S. front; the two 17th-century doorways have moulded jambs and elliptical arches in square heads with double labels. On the angle between the wing and the adjoining S.W. buttress of the chapel is a late 15th-century external pulpit (Plate 42) with a panelled front on moulded corbelling and a roof or canopy with shouldered brackets, embattled cresting and a rayed rose on the soffit with lilies in the angles; the pulpit is entered by a doorway with a four-centred head. The continuation of the front, S. of the chapel, has a 17th-century doorway, with a four-centred arch in a square head and a label; in the upper part of the earlier building is a blocked doorway with a shouldered head; the windows are mostly of the 17th or 18th century; the windows and doorways in the eastern section of the front are mainly of early 16th-century date and similar to those on the S. front. Inside the wing the middle part, forming the 13th-century building, was about 49 ft. by 15½ ft. and was of two storeys; the remains of the lower storey are now to be seen in two cellars at the E. and W. ends of the early building; it had formerly a ribbed stone vault of four bays, drawings of which were made by Buckler in the 19th century; this vault has been destroyed except for two vaulting-shafts, in the W. angles of the building, with moulded capitals and bases; in the E. cellar are remains of four more vaulting-shafts now cut back to the wall-face; in the E. wall is a blocked doorway with chamfered jambs, two-centred arch and moulded label and visible on the outer face; in the W. wall are the rebated internal jambs of a second doorway. The so-called chapel converted into chambers in 1665–6 was presumably on the floor above. A room towards the E. end of the first floor of the wing has a 16th-century moulded ceiling-beam. On the attic-floor is a 16th-century fireplace with a flat four-centred arch in a square head; at the head of the middle staircase is a 17th-century balustrade.
The Bell Tower (Plate 131) was built between 1492 and 1509 and is of four storeys and five external stages, and is 144½ ft. high to the top of the pinnacles; it is ashlar-faced, stands on a moulded plinth and has octagonal buttresses or turrets at the angles; the facing has been extensively restored. The ground-stage has a doorway, in the N. wall, with moulded jambs, four-centred arch and label with modern stops; the rear-arch is ribbed. In the second stage, but still in the ground storey, the E., S. and W. walls had each a window of two cinque-foiled ogee lights with tracery in a two-centred head with a label; the E. and W. windows are blocked and otherwise altered by the adjoining wings. The third stage has similar windows in the E., S. and W. walls; the fourth stage is similarly treated but in the E. and W. windows the lights are continued down as pierced quatre-foiled panels. The bell-chamber has in each wall two restored windows each of three cinque-foiled ogee lights with vertical tracery in a four-centred head with a label; the lights are continued down below a transom as blind panels; between the windows on each face is a pilaster-buttress; the tower is finished with a band of sub-cusped quatrefoils and a pierced embattled parapet; the string-courses have carved enrichments including a pair of wrestlers and a shield-of-arms of the college; the angle-turrets are carried up as crocketted pinnacles and the intermediate buttresses are carried up as square pinnacles with a niche in the outward face; the niches contain figures of St. Mary Magdalene and St. John the Baptist, two of which are modern. Of the ten bells, the 3rd and 4th are by Abraham Rudhall, 1712, the 6th and tenor by Ellis Knight, 1623, the 7th by William Dawe, early 15th-century and inscribed "Sum rosa pulsata mundi Katerina vocata" and the 8th by Ellis Knight, 1641. In the second storey is the early 16th-century iron frame and works of the former clock; the frame has buttressed standards. In the tower are preserved a collection of carved and moulded stones, some from the former Inigo Jones Gateway and including figures of St. Mary Magdalene, the founder and St. Swithun and cartouches of the royal Stuart arms and those of the college; there is also a figure of St. Mary Magdalene from the tower and an oak door with a carved head.
The Range E. of the bell-tower and extending N. to the main building seems to have been built, as to its S. wing, early in the 16th century, but the N. wing is probably an early 17th-century addition; the range is of three storeys and has been extensively restored. The S. front ranges with and is generally similar to the wing W. of the tower, but the openings have all been restored and there are three gabled dormers of stone. The E. front has four modern gables and here again the openings are modern restorations; set in the wall are three carved angels holding defaced shields and also a portcullis. The N. face of the front wing retains some original windows and there are also some original windows with four-centred heads to the lights on the W. face of the N. wing. Inside the building the ground floor of the S. wing now forms a single room and is fitted with an early 17th-century fireplace and panelling brought from elsewhere. The adjoining room in the N. wing also has early 17th-century panelling brought from elsewhere and including an overmantel of two bays with enriched pilasters and shaped panelling in the bays.
The Great Quadrangle has cloister-alleys on all four sides; it has the Chapel and Muniment-tower at the S.W. angle, with the Hall to the E. of the chapel; it is entered by the Founder's Tower and the Library on the W. side, and this and the N. and E. sides are occupied by rooms.
The Chapel (Plate 128) forms the S.W. angle of the great quadrangle and flanks St. John's Quadrangle on the E.; it consists of a Choir (76½ ft. by 19½ ft.) and an Ante-chapel (74 ft. by 35 ft.). It was built between 1474 and 1480 and is an ashlar-faced building with an embattled parapet. The choir is of five bays with buttresses and crocketted pinnacles and the parapet-string is carved with grotesque beasts, foliage, etc. The E. wall is covered by a modern stone reredos and has two doorways now modern and blocked. The side walls have both five restored windows, each of three cinque-foiled ogee and transomed lights with vertical tracery in a two-centred head with moulded reveals and label; between the windows, internally, are wallshafts all apparently modern and perhaps inserted when Wyatt's plaster vault was erected in 1790. Projecting from the N.E. bay of the choir is a small chantry-chapel of two bays with a fan-vault; the panels are foiled and the ribs moulded; they spring from moulded corbels; the bosses are carved with flowers, foliage, etc.; in the N. wall is a doorway with a four-centred arch and traceried spandrels and further E. is a window of one cinque-foiled light. The middle bay of the S. wall has a depressed external arch below the parapet-string; it is said to have formed part of a former organ-chamber. The ante-chapel (Plate 151) is crossed by two arcades continuing the side walls of the choir; they are of two bays with two-centred arches of two moulded orders, springing from shafted piers with moulded capitals and bases and half-piers as responds. The W. wall of the middle bay of the ante-chapel has a low-pitched gable with a central and side pinnacles; the W. window has moulded reveals, two-centred arch and label; the existing three lights were put in, in the 17th-century, to accommodate the painted glass renewed by Francis Eginton in 1794. The W. doorway (Plate 129) is set in a projection and has moulded jambs and a four-centred arch in a square head with a four-centred outer rib standing free from the rest; the spandrels of the doorway are carved with shields of the royal arms and those of the founder; the label has a running lily-plant enrichment; the projection is finished with an embattled and panelled parapet with niches in the merlons filled with restored or modern figures, the Baptist, Edward IV, St. Mary Magdalene, St. Swithun and the founder; the rear-arch of the doorway is ribbed. The side-bays of the ante-chapel have windows, three in the N. bay and five in the S. bay, similar to those in the choir. In the N. wall of the N. bay is a doorway with moulded jambs and four-centred arch in a square head; the spandrels have carved angels holding scrolls inscribed "Fecit michi magna qui potens est" and "Hic est domus Dei et porta celi"; the rear-arch is ribbed; above the doorway is a square opening to the adjoining munimenttower, with a diagonal design of cusped tracery. The S.W. buttress of the ante-chapel is pierced with a doorway opening into the Chaplain's Quadrangle, S. of the Chapel; it has moulded jambs and four-centred head.
Fittings—Brasses: In choir—(1) of William Tibarde, [S.T.B., President, 1480] 15th-century figure of priest in choir-vestments with foot-inscription and restored marginal inscription with restored symbols of evangelists, two partly old; (2) of Arthur Cole, S.T.B., President and Canon of Windsor, 1558, figure of priest in surplice, amess and Garter-mantle, palimpsest on back of figure, parts, of royal arms, of figure of priest in mass-vestments and of kneeling figure; on back of inscription, two inscriptions to (a) Robert Cobbe, 1516, Margery his wife, 1516, and Sir Thomas Cobbe, 15.., (b) Margery, wife of William Chamberleyn, 1431, from the Greyfriars church London; (3) figure of priest in academic dress, c. 1480–90; (4) half-figure of priest in academic dress, c. 1480–90; (5) figure of priest in academic dress, c. 1490; (6) figure of priest in academic dress, c. 1520–30. In antechapel—(7) of Nicholas Goldwell, M.A., 1523, figure of man in gown with scroll and shield-of-arms of Goldwell; (8) of William Goberd, B.A., 1515, Archdeacon of Salop, figure of priest in surplice and amess, with remains of scroll; (9) of Walter Charyls, M.A., 1502, three-quarter figure of man in academic dress, head lost; (10) of Ralph Vawdrey, M.A., 1478, half-figure of priest in academic dress, with part of scroll; (11) of Thomas Mason, M.A., 1501–2, figure of priest in academic dress; (12) of George Lassy, c. 1500, half-figure of priest in academic dress; on N. wall, (13) to William Grey, 1605–6, inscription only; (14) of [John Perch, M.A., B.P., 1487–8], figure of priest, perhaps that of John Hygden, 1532, in cope, head and lower part modern, with foot and restored marginal inscription of John Perch; on S. wall, (15) to John Bentley, M.A., , inscription only; (16) to William Hasard, 1509, inscription only; (17) to Robert Honiman, M.A., 1616–7, mutilated inscription only; (18) to John Caley, M.A., 1516, inscription only, palimpsest on back, inscription to Isabel, wife of ... Fyscher, 1464; on floor, (19) of Thomas Sondes, 1478, figure in academic dress with mutilated scroll and marginal inscription, shield-of-arms of Sondes (defaced) impaling a quartered coat of Cheyney (?) and indents of three others. Chest: In S. bay of ante-chapel—with panelled front and one lock, 17th-century. Door: In doorway of chantry-chapel, of feathered battens with strap-hinges and ornamental scutcheon, late 15th-century. Glass: In ante-chapel—in eight smaller windows, glass in chiaroscuro of sepia tint, with cherubs or seraphs in tracery and six figures under canopies in each window, as follows—in N. bay, N.E. window, St. Anselm, St. Nemesius, St. Huldrucus, St. Burchardus, St. Wenceslaus, St. Januarius; in S.E. window, St. Helena, St. Patricia, St. Brigidia, St. Epimachus, St. Mary the Virgin, St. Agathon; in W. window, St. George, St. Cyriacus, St. Laurence, St. Nicholas, St. Hippolytus, St. Gregory of Nyssa; in S. bay, in N.E. window, St. Cornelius, St. Cyprian, St. Basil, St. Gregory, St. Clement of Alexandria, St. Cyril; in S.E. window, St. Theodosia, St. Eulalia, St. Martha, St. Mary Magdalene, St. Agnes, St. Anne; in E. window of S. wall, St. Catherine, St. Salome, St. Euphemia, St. Christina, St. Clare, St. Ursula; in W. window of S. wall, St. Clement, St. Irenaeus, St. Julius, St. Aristarchus, St. Polycarp, St. Ignatius; in W. window, St. Cleophas, St. Barnabas, St. Crispus, St. Dionysius, St. Titus, St. Timothy; windows ascribed to Richard Greenbury who supplied glass to the chapel in 1632. In main W. window, glass of similar type but lighter shade, representing the Last Judgment, said to have been from a picture by Christopher Schwarz (c. 1590), executed in the 17th century, damaged by a gale in 1703 and renewed by Francis Eginton in 1794. Lectern (Plate 25): of brass with baluster-stem, ball and large eagle, given in 1633 by Accepted Frewen, President, scrolled acanthus feet. Monuments and Floor-slabs. Monuments: In choir—in chantry-chapel on N. side, (1) of Richard Patten, c. 1450, father of the founder and removed here from All Saints, Wainfleet, when that church was destroyed in 1809 and placed in its present position in 1833, alabaster altar-tomb and effigy, altar-tomb with sides and ends enriched with cinquefoil-headed panels, the larger panels having brackets, in two panels at W. end standing figures of angels holding shields with garters, one shield bearing the arms of the founder, effigy (Plate 135) in civil costume with purse, rosary and remains of dagger, head on cushion supported by figures of the founder and his brother John, Dean of Chichester, feet on lilies, effigy restored in parts. In ante-chapel—on E. wall of N. bay, (2) to John and Thomas Lyttleton, both died 1635, alabaster wall-monument (Plate 179) by Nicholas Stone with framed tablet surmounted by broken pediment and flanked by draped standing figures of two youths, shield-of-arms on apron; on N. wall, (3) to Samuel Adams, M.D., 1711, white marble tablet with cornice, urn and shield-of-arms; (4) of William Langton, S.T.D., 1626, President, alabaster wall-monument (Plate 134) with half figure of man in ruff, gown and hood, in curtained recess with entablature and centrepiece, recess flanked by two allegorical figures and three other figures on cornice and centrepiece, cartouche-of-arms; on W. wall, (5) to Walter Wallwyn, 1640, alabaster and white marble tablet, with eared architrave, cornice, cherubs and cartouche-of-arms; (6) to Henry Yerbury, M.D., 1686, alabaster and black marble tablet, with bay-leaf frame, scrolls, broken pediment and cartouche-of-arms; on S. wall of S. bay, (7) to Thomas Bayley, S.T.P., 1706, President, marble tablet with side-pilasters, cornice, urn and cartouche; (8) of Laurence Humphrey, S.T.D., 1589–90, President and Regius professor of Divinity, alabaster and black marble wall-monument (Plate 34), with half-length figure of man in gown and hood in round-headed recess, with Corinthian side-columns, entablature and cartouche-of-arms; (9) to Thomas Cradocke, 1678, oval draped tablet of marble, with cartouche-of-arms; on W. wall, (10) to Nicholas Bond, S.T.D., 1607, President, alabaster and black marble tablet with Corinthian side-columns, entablature and achievement-of-arms. On W. wall of middle bay—(11) to George Hunt, LL.D., 1699–1700, stone and stucco tablet with cherub-heads and cartouche-of-arms. Floor-slabs: In ante-chapel—(1) to S[amuel] Adams, 1711; (2) to William Browne, S.T.B., 1678, with defaced achievement-of-arms; (3) to Edward Exton, M.D., 1683, with shield-of-arms; (4) to William Nicholson, M.A., 1678, with shield-of-arms; (5) to Samuel Russell, M.A., 1670; (6) to Richard Russell, M.A., 1681; (7) to William Russell, M.A., 1672. Picture: The Bearing of the Cross, by Francisco Ribalta, c. 1570–1620. Scratchings: On various parts of the building—numerous masons' marks. Stalls: In S. bay of ante-chapel—twenty-nine stalls with shaped and moulded divisions, moulded arm-rests and carved misericordes (Plate 138) as follows—N. side, (a) grotesque mask, (b) winged monster, (c) grotesque mask, (d) fox and geese, (e) grotesque mask, (f) swan, (g) grotesque mask, (h) tumbler; W. side, (a) birds fighting, (b) winged monster, (c) horse, (d) grotesque mask, (e) ditto, (f) owl and mouse, (g) shield-of-arms of the college; S. side, (a) bust of man with cap, (b) beast's head, (c) winged monster, (d) rose-bush, (e) pelican in her piety, (f) grotesque mask, (g) eagle and prey, (h) hare, (i) crouching ape, (j) grotesque mask, (k) ditto, (l) horse on its back, (m) winged monster, (n) crouching ape; side-carvings, all foliage or flowers except one with dogs' heads, 15th-century; stall-backs mostly destroyed but two bays re-set against E. wall, with buttressed pinnacles and trefoiled and sub-cusped heads with foliated spandrels and crocketted ogee label.
The Muniment Tower adjoins the N. side of the antechapel, to which the ground-floor forms a vestibule; it is of three storeys, ashlar-faced and finished with a restored embattled parapet with a pinnacle at the N.W. angle. The doorway in the W. wall has moulded jambs and four-centred arch in a square head with a shield-of-arms of the founder encircled by the garter in one spandrel and a rose with a lily-spray and scroll in the other; it was formerly masked by an early 17th-century Renaissance setting and its position has been altered; the window, to the S., is modern except for the S. splay and part of the sill. In the N. wall is an original window of two cinque-foiled lights in a square head with a restored label; in it are some fragments of 15th to 17th-century glass including borders, inscriptions, a man's head, a crozier-head, etc. The vestibule has a stone vault (Plate 3) with ridge, diagonal, subsidiary and wall ribs springing from shafts with moulded capitals and bases; the central boss is carved with five roses and lilies; the other bosses are carved with a Majesty, angels with shields charged with the emblems of the Passion, the arms of the college and those of the see of Winchester, a pelican in her piety, a cross, vineleaves and human faces, flowers and foliage. On the E. of the vestibule is a corridor to the cloister with a ribbed four-centred barrel-vault. The two upper floors of the tower have each a window in the N. and W. walls similar to the N. window of the vestibule but of three lights. Both rooms are paved with old glazed tiles.
The S. Range of the Great Quadrangle, E. of the chapel, forms the Great Hall on the first floor with the Senior Common Rooms below. The range is of two storeys, ashlar-faced and divided externally by buttresses with pinnacles and having embattled parapets all similar to those of the chapel; at the E. end is a low-pitched gable with pinnacles and a S.E. stair-turret finished with an octagonal capping. On the ground floor the Senior Common Room was formerly the Vestry of the chapel; it has, in the N. wall, a blocked original window of two cinque-foiled lights in a square head; further E. is an altered doorway with a four-centred head. In the S. wall are two windows originally of similar type but altered for later windows and with the sills cut down. The room is lined with late 17th-century panelling with an entablature; the fireplace has a cornice and overmantel with a large panel flanked by carved consoles and finished with an enriched entablature; the panel has an achievement-of-arms of the founder. A series of roundels of foreign painted glass of the late 15th to the 17th century, from Tubney House, Berks., are to be fixed in this room. The passage to the E. has remains of an original window in the S. wall and a wide arch in the middle formerly supporting the central hearth in the hall above. In the E. wall is a doorway with a four-centred head. The Fellows' Smoking Room, formerly the Bursary, has an original doorway, with moulded jambs and four-centred arch, in the N. wall; above this and the Common Room doorway are 17th-century cartouches of the royal Stuart arms and those of the founder; the room is lined with re-set early 17th-century panelling, with an overmantel, probably of the 18th century. In this room is a 14th-century chest.
The Great Hall (72½ ft. by 29¼ ft.) is approached by a staircase and an original archway at the E. end of the cloister, with moulded jambs and four-centred arch in a square head, with traceried spandrels enclosing shields of the arms of the college; the rear-arch is moulded and the raking soffit is ribbed. The Hall, itself, is of five bays, each, except the N.W. bay, with an original or partly restored window of two cinque-foiled ogee and transomed lights with vertical tracery in a two-centred head with a label; the N.W. bay has a three-sided oriel, restored externally and having three cinque-foiled ogee and transomed lights on the face and two on each canted return; the archway opening into it is four-centred and ribbed on the soffit. In the E. reveal is a short wall-passage to the leads of the cloister. In the E. wall are three original doorways to the buttery and pantry, with moulded jambs and four-centred heads; there is also a serving-hatch of similar form; one doorway has an original door. The roof is modern. The early 17th-century screen (Plate 133) is of five bays with two doorways, flanked by fluted Corinthian columns supporting a continuous entablature with a carved frieze; the projections over the columns have each a shield-of-arms and an obelisk; the arms are those of the college (2), the founder and Maltravers; the bays and doors of the screen have four ranges of enriched panels; in the bays the lowest have arcaded panels and the two upper have small arcaded panels surrounded by subsidiary ones; the gallery-front is divided into bays by coupled Corinthian columns supporting an enriched entablature; the bays have enriched arcaded panels enclosing shields-of-arms and the pedestals of the columns are carved with lilies; the bays have carved achievements-of-arms of the founder, Winchester See impaling the same, the royal Stuart arms and a series of small shields of Bishop Fox, Derwentwater (?), Arundel, etc. The back of the screen has simple early 17th-century panelling; at the head of the stairs is an enriched cross-arch of oak with Ionic side-pilasters and shields of the royal Stuart arms, the college and the Prince of Wales' feathers. The N., S. and W. walls of the hall are lined with early 16th-century linen-fold panelling, extending up to the window-sills on the side walls and two tiers higher on the W. wall; it is finished with an entablature of which the frieze (Plate 50) on the W. wall is original and carved with scrolls, figures, heads, lilies, pots of ointment, the royal Tudor arms and those of the founder and the college; on the W. wall also are three groups of carved panels; the middle group (Plate 137) is of nine panels of which five represent scenes from the life of St. Mary Magdalen (a) the Magdalen washing the feet of Christ, (b) Christ at Bethany with the inscription "Martha solicita es et turbaris erga plurima Maria optimam partem elegit" and the date 1541, (c) the Magdalen anointing the head of Christ, (d) Christ appearing to the Magdalen in the garden with inscriptions "Noli me tangere" and "Rabboni", (e) the Magdalen and the disciples with the inscription "Vidi dominum"; the other panels have (f) figures of St. John the Baptist and St Mary Magdalen with the date 1541, (g) the royal Tudor arms and badges, (h) half-figure of Henry VIII with his name and (i) the Prince of Wales' feathers; the side groups (Plate 127) are each of four panels, on the N., (a) composite shield of the founder, (b) shield of Arundel quartering Maltravers, (c) head of a bearded and turbaned man with the letters IVM on the collar, (d) head of woman; on the S., (a) shield as (b) above, (b) arms of the founder with initials, (c) woman's head, (d) man's head; on the architrave of the entablature is a painted inscription from Colossians iii, 16–17 with the date 1681. The panelling on the side walls is divided into bays by fluted Ionic pilasters and has a 17th-century frieze (Plate 50) carved with scrolled monsters. Against the side-walls are fixed benches. In the oriel of the hall is a series of mid 16th-century shields-of-arms in wreaths or cartouches and mostly surmounted by mitres, as follows—(a) John Longland, Bishop of Lincoln, 1521–47, (b) John Stokesley, Bishop of London, 1530–39; (c) the founder with a garter, (d) John Veysey or Harman, Bishop of Exeter, 1519–54, (e) Edward Lee, Archbishop of York, 1531–44, (f) John Harley, Bishop of Hereford, 1553–4, (g) Thomas Bentham, Bishop of Lichfield, 1560–79, (h) John Parkhurst, Bishop of Norwich, 1560–75, (i) Richard Mayo or Mayhew, Bishop of Hereford, 1504–16, (j) Royal arms of Queen Elizabeth with the date 156; also a 16th or 17th-century medallion-portrait of the founder and 17th-century portraits of Charles I and Henrietta Maria, the latter dated 1632. To the E. of the hall are a buttery and pantry with a cellar and passage below. The cellar has two original doorways with four-centred heads and the modern staircase incorporates two early 17th-century oak archways with four-centred heads and some late 17th-century balusters; in the S. wall is a blocked 15th-century window of three cinque-foiled lights. The floor above has similar windows of two lights.
The Kitchen Range adjoins the hall-range on the E. The Kitchen itself is probably of late 13th or 14th-century date and formed part of the hospital buildings; the S. wing seems to have been built in 1635. This wing is of four storeys and has three gables on the S. front; the partly restored windows have four-centred lights and moulded labels. The windows in the E. wall are mostly modern. The main larder on the ground floor of this range has a deep recess in the N. wall with moulded jambs and four-centred arch in a square head. The kitchen has a restored ashlar-faced N. wall with three blocked lancet-windows perhaps originally of late 13th or 14th-century date and a round window in the gable, also blocked. In the W. wall is an early 17th-century doorway, now disused; it has a moulded oak frame with a four-centred arch. The N. fireplace has a high cambered lintel and the S. fireplace has a three-centred arch; both are inserted in the earlier building. The roof is perhaps of the 16th century and is of four bays with tie-beams, collars and curved wind-braces; the queen-posts are probably later insertions.
The Great Quadrangle (Plates 109, 130) (125½ ft. by 152½ ft. excluding the cloister) was built c. 1475–90 and is surrounded by a cloister which is incorporated in the ranges in the E., N. and W. but is a single-storey building on the S.; the N. cloister was re-built in 1824, on the old lines and the S. cloister has been much refaced. The walls are ashlar-faced. There is some evidence that the cloister-alleys were not originally contemplated and that the buttresses were added when the cloister-windows were inserted; the figures crowning the buttresses were added c. 1509 and were repaired in 1605 and at various later dates; some have been renewed. Each bay of the cloister, except one on the W., has a more or less restored external window of three septfoiled lights with tracery in a four-centred head with moulded reveals and label; those on the E. and W. are largely original. The fourth window of the S. cloister has a modern doorway below the middle light; the S. cloister is finished with a restored embattled parapet with pinnacles over the buttresses. The buttresses on the other three sides are surmounted by carved figures as follows, beginning at the S.E. angle and proceeding N. and W.—E. side, (a) human monster with mask on belly, (b) two human figures wrestling, (c) winged monster, (d) hart or yale, (e) dragon, (f) greyhound, (g) monster with human head, (h) griffin, (i) monster with bird's head and human head above breasts, (j) monster with beast's head holding an owl and a head, (k) seated beast; N. side, (a) seated monster with three heads, (b) monster, half woman, (c) monster, half man, (d) seated camel, small animal on its back, (e) man in civil dress and hat, (f) man in armour, perhaps Goliath (g) David or Samson and the lion, (h) jester; W. side, (a) Moses, (b) possibly Jacob and the angel, (c) doctor of medicine, (d) lawyer, (e) pelican, (f) seated lion. The E. range is of two storeys with a modern embattled parapet, with old carvings of beast-heads and foliage on the string-course; the W. face of the upper storey has a series of partly restored windows of one or two cinque-foiled lights with labels, spaced regardless of the bays of the cloister below; where the wall passes over the S. cloister, it is carried on a four-centred wall-arch with two mortices in the face of each voussoir. The E. face of the range is modern. Inside the range, the inner wall of the cloister-alley has a series of 15th-century doorways with moulded jambs and four-centred heads; there is also a series of one and two-light windows all blocked and bearing little relation to the chambers and partitions behind. The passage to the kitchen has a series of chamfered beams and is entered by a partly restored archway with a four-centred head. This range was designed to be of three storeys with attics, as is evident from the fireplaces remaining high up in the S. wall, one of which is cut by the ceiling of the first-floor room and one is in the gable; there are also remains of fireplaces at the former second-floor level in the cross-walls. The rest of the range has no ancient features. The N. Range is generally similar to the E. range but is almost entirely modern externally. Inside the range the inner wall of the cloister-alley is ancient and has a series of doorways and windows similar to those in the E. range. The rest of the range has no ancient features. The W. Range is divided into two unequal portions by the Founder's Tower. The part to the N. has the Old Library on the first floor; this is finished towards the court with a restored parapet with old carvings of human figures and grotesques on the string; the partly restored windows are of two cinque-foiled lights with moulded reveals and labels. The W. face of this part of the range has a similar parapet and carvings; the windows are partly restored and are of one or two lights on the ground-floor, with a range of two-light windows lighting the library above; all of them have or had cinque-foiled lights. Inside this part of the range, the inner wall of the cloister-alley has a series of doorways and windows similar to those on the other two sides; the doorway to the library-staircase has traceried spandrels enclosing painted shields with a rayed Tudor rose and the arms of the College. The Old Library has a late 18th-century plaster vault but above this is an older timber roof, presumably that erected in 1609–10; it is of fourteen bays with collar-beams supporting king-posts; the scissor-braces are later additions. The Founder's Tower (Plates 130, 132) is of late 15th-century date and of four storeys with a restored embattled parapet, crocketted pinnacles and an embattled and pinnacled stair-turret at the S.E. angle. The ground storey forms a gatehouse to the great quadrangle; the outer archway has moulded jambs and four-centred arch in a square head with quatre-foiled spandrels enclosing roses and lilies; the spandrels have each a hand holding a blank scroll in addition; the outer order of the arch is carried up as a four-centred rib with open cusped spandrels in a square head with an enriched label and stops, probably modern, and carved as angels holding shields, one bearing the college arms. The late 15th-century doors are in two leaves with two ranges of cinquefoil-headed panels, foliage-spandrels and a moulded middle rail; there is a wicket in the S. leaf; the doors have some modern repair. Above the arch is a range of panels with trefoiled and sub-cusped heads and an embattled capping. The inner archway has moulded jambs and four-centred arch; above it is a range of diagonal cusped panels with an embattled capping; the buttresses, flanking the archway, have modern figures of angels. The gate-hall has a restored ribbed lierne vault of two bays, springing from moulded and carved corbels; the bosses are carved with shields, one bearing a fesse, foliage, roses, fleurs-de-lis, human masks and vine-leaves with grapes. The side-walls have each a four-centred arch to the cloister-alley, with a panelled soffit springing from carved and moulded corbelling. Beneath these arches are fixed two panels of 15th-century character, with the royal arms and those of the founder and angel-supporters. The first and second floors of the tower have, on each face, a much restored two-storeyed bay-window finished with a panelled embattled parapet and having three lights on the face and two on the canted sides; all have trefoiled and sub-cusped heads and the mullions are carried up to form blind panels between the windows, also with cusped heads. Flanking the bay-windows on the outer face are four niches with canopies of broken tabernacle-work and containing figures of Edward IV and the founder and of St. Mary Magdalene and St. John the Baptist. In the room on the first floor the bay-windows have four-centred and panelled arches with three half-angels at the apex; an angel on each arch bears a shield-of-arms of the king and the college respectively; in the N. wall is a fireplace with moulded jambs and four-centred arch in a square head with foliage-spandrels. The ceiling has moulded beams and joists forming three bays; the panelling is probably modern. In the room are two early 16th-century Flemish tapestries (Plate 136) both forming part of one subject and said to represent the betrothal of Prince Arthur and Katherine of Aragon. In the room on the second floor, the arches to the bay-windows are similar to those below, but have no angels; the ceiling has moulded cross-beams. The top storey of the tower has a restored window in each wall; those in the E. and W. walls are of three cinque-foiled lights with labels and those in the N. and S. walls are of one and two lights respectively. The low-pitched roof has heavy chamfered tie-beams. Adjoining the tower on the N.W. is a small annexe forming part of the President's Lodging. It is of three storeys with a restored embattled parapet and a turret at the N.W. angle. On the first floor is a projecting oriel-window resting on embattled corbelling and finished with an embattled capping; it has three cinque-foiled lights on the face and one on each return. The floor above has a single cinque-foiled light. The W. Range, S. of the Founder's Tower, is generally similar to the other ranges of the cloister-quadrangle but has, on the upper floor, five partly restored oriel-windows, three on the E. and two on the W. face; they rest on corbelling and have embattled cappings; each window has two cinque-foiled lights on the face and one on each return. Below those on the W. face are a pair of windows of two cinque-foiled lights in square heads. The S. end of the range, above the cloister-alley, is formed by a half-gable carried on a relieving arch, below which is an inserted doorway to the leads, now blocked. Inside this part of the range, the inner wall of the cloister has two blocked windows recently uncovered. The bed-rooms on the first floor have original moulded ceiling-beams; both rooms have fireplaces with moulded jambs and four-centred arches; the S.W. oriel-window has a squint in the S. splay; the S.E. oriel-window is modern.
The President's Lodging, formerly enclosing a quadrangle with the Election Chamber on the N. side, was re-built in 1886–8 except for the one-storeyed kitchen-wing extending to the N. This is ashlar-faced and was built probably early in the 16th century. The embattled W. wall now rises high above the building and is continued N. as a high garden-wall; this appears to have formed the W. wall of the Election Chamber, pulled down in 1770. The Lodging also includes rooms in the Founder's Tower and the range to the S. of it.
The Old Grammar Hall (Plate 132), W. of the President's Lodging was built in 1614, probably as an addition to an earlier building, now destroyed. It is of three storeys with attics, but the N. part is of two storeys only. The S. wall is largely a restoration of 1849; it is gabled and has diagonal buttresses at the angles and a small embattled turret at the S.E. angle, with a pyramidal capping. The windows, where original, have elliptical heads to the lights but one window high up in the turret is pointed and has the lower part filled with pierced quatrefoils. The E. wall of the main block is embattled and has a doorway with a four-centred arch in a square head. In the W. gable is a panel with the date 1614. The building has now been converted into sets of chambers. The N.W. room was formerly a kitchen and has a wide fireplace with a four-centred arch. A room on the first floor has moulded ceiling-beams. Adjoining the building on the W. is a garden-wall, probably of the same date, with a doorway and several blocked openings; the doorway has a four-centred head.
The New Buildings, N. of the main quadrangle, were begun in 1733 and are ashlar-faced and of three storeys. The S. front has an entablature and parapet, with a pediment over the middle bay. The ground floor, except in the end bays, has an open loggia with round arches.
The Boundary Wall, on the N. and W. sides of Magdalen Grove, dates from late in the 15th century and is finished with a restored embattled parapet. At the angle of St. Cross and Long Wall Street is a projecting tower, carried up above the wall and having restored loops and an embattled parapet.