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Sheldonian Theatre, Oxford

4.5
#5 of 15 in Historic Sites in Oxford
'''The Sheldonian Theatre, located in Oxford, England, was built from 1664 to 1669 after a design by Christopher Wren for the University of Oxford. The building is named after Gilbert Sheldon, chancellor of the University at the time and the project's main financial backer. It is used for music concerts, lectures and University ceremonies, but not for drama until 2015 when the Christ Church Dramatic Society staged a production of The Crucible.HistoryWhat came to be known as the Sheldonian Theatre was Wren's second work and was commissioned by Gilbert Sheldon, Archbishop of Canterbury. With the triumph of the Restoration and with it the Church of England, Dean Fell, Vice-Chancellor of the University, sought to revive a project proposed in the 1630s by the late William Laud, Archbishop of Canterbury: a separate building whose sole use would be graduation and degree ceremonies.In the past these increasingly rowdy occasions had taken place in the university's church of St. Mary-the-Virgin-on-High. "The notion that 'sacrifice is made equally to God and Apollo', in the same place where homage was due to God and God alone, was as repugnant to Fell and his colleagues as it had been to Laud"; with this in mind they approached the Archbishop of Canterbury Gilbert Sheldon, for his blessing, his assistance, and a donation.
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Sheldonian Theatre Reviews
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416 reviews
Google
4.5
TripAdvisor
  • We went to Oxford and the Sheldonian Theatre well worth. The building is beautiful, is located right in the historic centre of the city, has a very distinctive circular shape and witnessed the history of the city. I advise you not to Miss
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  • Christopher Wren's second commission, this is the University's setting for graduation and other formal ceremonies. We wondered about the painted ceiling and had to look it up: Charles II's court paint...  more »
  • Beautiful building. Just right for occasions such as my son's Graduation from Keble College. The accoustics were just right.  more »
Google
  • My absolute personal favourite piece of architecture in oxford. And this is a city full of beautiful examples.
  • Wonderful Theatre but in summer they leave some of the windows open, so you get some street noise inside.
  • Awe-inspiring architecture - all of the University complex is worth at least walking around outside if not visiting the interiors.
  • Great historic building. Wonderful close up view from the cupola. Seating is less comfortable.
  • Beautiful building, the acoustics worked well for the concert. On the downside, don't be 6'+ (or come very very early (well before doors) to get a floor seat) as leg room is tight (the row behind me had so little room it was hard to shuffle sideways along it when empty) - I was so jammed in I started to lose circulation.
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1 day in Oxford BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM May, historic sites, museums, slow & easy, popular PREFERENCES: May, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Slow & easy 7 days in Oxfordshire BY A USER FROM ARGENTINA August, culture, popular PREFERENCES: August, culture ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 9 days in Oxfordshire BY A USER FROM SAUDI ARABIA May, culture, historic sites, museums, wildlife, popular PREFERENCES: May, culture, historic sites, museums, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 16 days in United Kingdom BY A USER FROM CANADA May, historic sites, museums, slow & easy, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: May, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Slow & easy 60 days in Europe BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA September, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: September, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 15 days in Oxfordshire BY A USER FROM PAKISTAN May, culture, popular PREFERENCES: May, culture ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 7 days in Oxfordshire BY A USER FROM CANADA June, popular PREFERENCES: June ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 7 days in Oxfordshire BY A USER FROM ETHIOPIA June, popular PREFERENCES: June ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 31 days in Cambridge BY A USER FROM KYRGYZSTAN April, popular PREFERENCES: April ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 5 days in Oxfordshire BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM April, teens, popular PREFERENCES: April, teens ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 19 days in Cambridge BY A USER FROM BRAZIL July, culture, popular PREFERENCES: July, culture ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 5 days in Oxfordshire BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM March, popular PREFERENCES: March ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium
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