In 2021 Jesus College celebrates its 450th anniversary. This section provides information on all our upcoming events and activities throughout the year and will be updated regularly. Scroll down for our potted College History, which highlights some of the key moments in the rich life of the College over the past four-and-a-half centuries.
A POTTED HISTORY OF JESUS COLLEGE
The College was founded in 1571 under the reign of Queen Elizabeth I, making it the only Elizabethan College within the University of Oxford. It is officially known as 'Jesus College in the University of Oxford of Queen Elizabeth's Foundation', although its first benefactor was Hugh Aprice (or Price), a Welsh clergyman who had previously been educated at the University. You can read a partial translation of the College's Foundation Charter here.
1571 Foundation of the College.
1621 Our Chapel is consecrated.
1622 The College's First Statutes are issued, 50 years after our foundation.
1648 Following the English Civil War, the College Principal and several Fellows were expelled for staying loyal to Charles I.
1661 Leoline Jenkins, arguably our greatest benefactor, is elected Principal.
1679 Completion of the Fellows' Library, still a rare and wonderful example of an almost intact 17th century library.
1691 Richard 'Beau' Nash, Master of Ceremonies at Bath, who helped turn Bath into a great centre of fashion, comes up to Jesus.
1701 Thomas Wilkins, son of an Old Member of Jesus, gives the College the Red Book of Hergest, a great repository of medieval Welsh literature which is perhaps our most precious manuscript.
1713 Completion of the Second Quad - 74 years after work had first begun on it!
1732 Sir Watkin Williamns Wynn gives the College a magnificent silver punchbowl - our grandest piece of silverware.
1815 Jesus competes against Brasenose in the earliest recorded inter-Collegiate boat race at Oxford. We lost.
1854 The Turl Street frontage of College achieves its current appearance when its tower is added.
1855 J.R.Green, eminent historian and intellectual, comes up to Oxford.
1906 Pixley ka Isaka Seme, founder of the ANC, comes up to Oxford.
1907 T.E Lawrence comes up to Jesus.
1908 The Leoline Jenkins Laboratories open.
1920 A sign of post-war recovery: Jesus wins Rugby Cuppers.
1934 Harold Wilson comes up to Jesus.
1940 Jesus students take to the roof of the College to keep watch for German bombers during WW2.
1970 Retirement of Fred Reeley, College servant for 70 years and Head Porter for most of that time.
1971 As part of our 400th anniversary celebrations, the Old Members Building is opened by Prince Charles.
1974 The arrival of the first women to College, as part of what was known as the 'Jesus Experiment'.
1980 The Jesus Women's First Eight goes Head of the River at Torpids -the first time any college eight has achieved this.
1998 The College goes head of the Norrington Table for the first time.
2015 Professor Sir Nigel Shadbolt is appointed Principal.
2018 Professor Patricia Daley becomes our first black female Vice Principal.
2021 We celebrate our 450th anniversary with the opening of the new Northgate building.