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Trinity College 2018-04-28T15:41:58+01:00

Trinity College

History

The history of Trinity goes back to the reign of Henry VIII and most of its major buildings date from the 16th and 17th centuries. The beauty and size of Trinity’s courts attract visitors from all over the world, but remember that the College is also a thriving, modern community today.

Trinity College, largest and wealthiest college in Cambridge. One of the college’s most iconic building’s is the Wren Library… no prizes for guessing who designed that. It’s another of Christopher Wren’s.

The college was founded by Henry VIII himself but he was a very reluctant college founder. He did give them a lot of land but this was mostly land he had confiscated from the Catholic church so it didn’t set him back by much. Today Trinity is one of the largest landowners in the UK. They say you could walk from here all the way to Oxford without stepping off Trinity’s property. I doubt that’s true though a the Porters patrolling would never let you walk on their property for that long. They do however own the lease on the O2 Arena, shares in the port at Felixstowe, Land on the island of Manhatten, The Cambridge science park belongs to Trinity, I’m told nine tenths of the moon belongs to Trinity. Their combined assets are rusted to be worth approximately three billion pounds. That’s a very small number of billions which is why they had to raise the tuition fees last year.

This was also the college of Prince Charles, but Charlie (bless him) wasn’t the brightest spark to attend Trinity. He’d actually been rejected at Oxford before applying to Cambridge. They both have high standards but there is one important difference. Here at Trinity the Queen has the right to choose the next college master. When she wrote them a letter asking them to let Charles in, they thought best not to upset her. To his credit he did ask to be treated like every other student but this request was politely ignored. He was given the entire top floor of the student residence to himself, that’s 27 rooms, and since Cambridge freshers can’t have cars he turned up on his first day in a helicopter instead. He also had a bodyguard who went with him everywhere. And Charles’ bodyguard, they said that poor guy was going to be stuck in all of the lectures for the next three years, he may as well be given permission to sit the exams too. Embarrassingly for the young prince (you may be able to guess where this story is heading), the bodyguard got better grades than him. I don’t know if that man is still employed at the palace but he does now have 2.1 in history and anthropology so he might be on his way to greater things.

The College grew rapidly in importance during the century after its foundation and by 1564 it accounted for about a quarter of the total number of resident members of the University.

Alumni:

Sir Isaac Newton – mathematician, astronomer, theologian – Quote: If I have seen further than others, it is by standing upon the shoulders of giants.

Ludwig Wittgenstein – Austrian-British philosopher and Mathematician – Quote: If people never did silly things nothing intelligent would ever get done.

Bertrand Russell – British philosopher, logician, mathematician, historian, writer, social critic, political activist and Nobel laureate – Quote: The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt.

Stanley Baldwin – Quote: A platitude is simply a truth repeated until people get tired of hearing it.

Ernest Rutherford – Quote: All science is either physics or stamp collecting

Lord Byron – Quote: Sorrow is knowledge, those that know the most must mourn the deepest, the tree of knowledge is not the tree of life.

Vladimir Nabokov – Quote: The breaking of a wave cannot explain the whole sea.

J J Thomson – Discovered the electron and the first sub atomic particle

A A Milne – Winnie the pooh – Weeds are flowers too, once you get to know them.

Blunt , Burgess & Mclane – Cambridges’ Russian spies

Eddie Redmayne – Actor