This bench is dedicated to the memory of Tolkien and is located on the beautiful grounds of the University Parks. Seminar Director Dr. John King is joined by Drs. Terri Borus, Mark Rankin, Lee Piepho, and Pablo Alvarez.
Sunday, 22 July 2007
Armed with a map from 1755 and information from books on William Caxton's printing press at Westminster Abbey, I walked around the Abbey in an effort to locate where the two sites of his shops might have been. The top photo is on the back side of the Abbey and is, as near as I can figure, close to the site of Caxton's later print shop, at the sign of the Red Pale. It is now a religious bookstore; I think Caxton would approve. The bottom photo is the site of Caxton's first press at the Abbey. It is tucked between the Abbey church and the Chapter house. I never quite understood how this would work as a location for a print shop, but this wedge of space between the two buildings forms a protected space.
Mark walked many miles to visit the many sites in Oxford associated with J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis. Here, Mark and Pablo are at the famed Eagle and Child Pub where Tolkien, Lewis and other members of the writing group, the Inklings, met to share their writing. The photo of Mark standing is in the room where the Inklings typically met.
I met this friendly group of scholars on Queens Lane. They kindly explained to me something that I had been wondering about since we came to Oxford: when did school let out for summer holidays? These young men were spending a week at the university before enjoying a six-week summer holiday. Thanks lads!