Cartoon of College and University Life, 1880

These cartoons were given to the archives by George Cawkwell (F. 1949–87), who had been given them himself by an unknown donor, in May 2013 as Accession No. 1047.

Most of them related to an incident on the night of 11 May 1880, when the door of Albert Chavasse (Fellow 1864–1902, and then Senior Proctor), was screwed up as an undergraduate prank. The Master, George Bradley, and Fellows demanded that the perpetrator own up. Unfortunately, the perpetrator, Samuel Sandbach (matr. 1876) had left early that morning for a yeomanry camp in Wales, and because the other students refused to sneak on him, the Master sent almost all of them down on the spot. Fortunately, a message reached Sandbach, and he agreed to own up, so that the College reconvened after a week’s unexpected holiday. The story is told in more detail in Robin Darwall-Smith, A History of University College, Oxford (Oxford, 2008), pp. 402–5. Some of the cartoons, however, relate to Chavasse's Proctorial activities, in particular his presence at Encaenia in 1880.

The cartoons have been mounted onto four sheets of paper or card.

Catalogued in June 2013.

UC:P300/P1/1    after May 1880
    Card (evidently taken from an album) with two cartoons on it, relating to the sending down of 1880. On one side, from left to right, James Frank Bright (Fellow 1874–81 and Master 1881–1906), George Bradley (Master 1870–81), and Albert Chavasse (Fellow 1864–1902) stand in front of the main entrance to University College, with a clutch of undergraduates about to depart. On the other side, Master Bradley, with Bright in the background, waves off two undergraduates, in a coach. Both cartoons are drawn in pen and ink, and are unsigned. They are in different hands.
    Size: 390 by 550 mm.

UC:P300/P1/2    after May 1880
    Card (taken from an album) with two cartoons on it, each showing Albert Chavasse trying to climb into his room up a ladder. They are drawn in pen and ink, and appear to be by the same artist, but both are unsigned.
    Size: 310 by 370 mm.

UC:P300/P1/3    1880
    Card (taken from an album) with two cartoons on it, relating to Albert Chavasse’s activities as Senior Proctor. On one side Chavasse is shown in hot pursuit of an undergraduate running into University College with the caption “Fee Fo Fum: I smell the bloc of a Uxxv Man”; on the other, he is shown with his fellow Proctor, Frederick Warren (Fellow of St. John’s), and a third unidentifiable academic with his back to the viewer, cleaning up a dirty room with items of rubbish labelled “Billiards after 9", “Immorality” and “Tandems”. This cartoon is labelled “The University Scavengers”, and is signed “EGC 1880". Both cartoons are drawn in pen and ink, and seem to be in different hands.
    Size: 310 by 380 mm.

UC:P300/P1/4    Oct 1880
    Card (taken from an album) with three cartoons on it, mostly relating to the Encaenia of 1880. On one side is a cartoon captioned “The Sheldonian Show 1880", signed “R. P. P. Oct 1880". In the top-left hand corner is Prince Leopold. Queen Victoria’s youngest son, captioned “Queen’s own Prodigy”. In the front, from left to right, are Henry Fawcett, Henry Austin Bruce, Lord Aberdare (captioned “Lordship”, and John Millais (captioned “Brunswick Black”, presumably an allusion to his painting “The Black Brunswicker”), all three of whom all received honorary degrees that year, possibly Evan Evans, Master of Pembroke and then Vice-Chancellor, Albert Chavasse (captioned - inevitably - “Never screw’d but once”, Walter Merry (then Public Orator), and an unidentified figure. In front of Fawcett is a figure resembling Sir Frederick Leighton, captioned “An Absent Artist” (presumably the fact that Millais, and not Leighton, received an degree was a matter of comment at the time).
        On the other side of the card are two unsigned cartoons. One depicts an unidentified  proctor calling out “No Popery”, standing in front of the Church of St. Philip and St. James in Oxford, and the other is another view of the Encaenia of 1880. In this one, Prince Leopold is again on the top row; below him are two posters, one depicting an unknown man, and the other John Millais. Below them, from left to right, are Frederick Warren (the other proctor for 1880/1), Evan Evans, Albert Chavasse, and an unidentified figure. On the ground is Walter Merry.
    Size: 310 by 385 mm.

UC:P300/MS1/1    n.d.
    Memoir by Charles Harris (matr. 1879) of the sending down of 1880.