Friday, 15 October 2010

Saturday 2 October 2010: An Afternoon in Oxford

"[Oxford] whispering from her towers the last enchantments of the Middle Age . . . Home of lost causes, and forsaken beliefs, and unpopular names, and impossible loyalties!"
Matthew Arnold (English Victorian Poet and Critic of Literacy and Society. 1822-1888)

On this Saturday afternoon we decided to visit the Ashmolean in Oxford for the Pre-Raphaelites and Italy temporary exhibition. It was, needless to say, fabulous with some incredible drawings by Ruskin. The entire day was a bit like walking into a fantasy world as the sun was bright and shining while practically everywhere else in Britain was being rained upon. Matthew Arnold called Oxford the "city of dreaming spires". To me Oxford seems bathed in a spectacular golden light. Although, the photo I chose to blip doesn't demonstrate this very well.

As we were rushing to the museum, I turned to look behind me and saw this image which I very quickly snapped before continuing on. To me it looks like a moment captured from another time.

I wonder anybody does anything at Oxford but dream and remember, the place is so beautiful. One almost expects the people to sing instead of speaking. It is all like an opera.
William Butler Yeats

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