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Oxford, University Dress f.40

Oxford, University Dress f.40

Artist: Grimm, Samuel Hieronymous

Medium: Ink wash on paper

Date: 1783

Shelfmark: Additional MS 15546

Item number: f.40

Length: 19.3

Width: 27.1

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Manuscript

A drawing in ink depicting Oxford University dress, by S.H. Grimm.

Detailed rules governed what members of the university should wear, and it is possible to recognize the degrees held by graduates and the social rank or status of undergraduates by their robes. The two figures on the left show the full-dress robes worn at gatherings of a formal or ceremonial character by those who hold a doctorate. The robes are of scarlet cloth and have facings down the front and bell-shaped sleeves covered in coloured silk, in both cases marked on the drawing with the word ‘rose’, signifying a Doctor of Civil Law or Medicine. The figure on the extreme left is wearing in addition a black clerical scarf and a hood. The Doctor’s round velvet bonnet worn with this full-dress robe is shown in the top right-hand corner. Below stands a figure in a Bachelor of Arts black gown with wide, pointed sleeves gathered up at the elbow. The black gown to the right belongs to a Master of Arts and has long, closed sleeves with an opening at the elbow to release the forearm and a curved cut at the foot.

This description was provided by The Burgon Society, which was founded to promote the study of academical dress.

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