Once I was a clever boy learning the arts of Oxford... is a quotation from the verses written by Bishop Richard Fleming (c.1385-1431) for his tomb in Lincoln Cathedral. Fleming, the founder of Lincoln College in Oxford, is the subject of my research for a D. Phil., and, like me, a son of the West Riding. I have remarked in the past that I have a deeply meaningful on-going relationship with a dead fifteenth century bishop... it was Fleming who, in effect, enabled me to come to Oxford and to learn its arts, and for that I am immensely grateful.
Allow me to be your guide... and discover the history of Oxford with an Oxford historian.
I offer a wide range of guided walks around the city and university. These can be a general introduction to the history and architecture or looking at specific themes and subjects.
I am a Catholic and a historian based in Oxford, where I am a member of Oriel College. My research, for a long delayed D.Phil., is a study of Richard Fleming, Bishop of Lincoln in the second decade of the fifteenth century. I also work as a freelance tutor in History and as an independent tour guide.
I was received into the Church in 2005 and am a Brother of the External Oratory of St Philip Neri at the Oxford Oratory.
As we begin Lent a friend has forwarded to me, as part of the answer to another friend's enquiry, the traditional rules on Fasting and Abstinence as well as the current ones. They are taken from the website of the SSPX in the US and can be read at http://sspx.org/en/rules-fast-and-abstinence
A while ago an Oratorian friend made the good point that dietary practices have changed with the times. In an age of central heating and better domestic insulation and similar conveniences, together with far less in the way of demanding physical work, we eat less because we no longer need to ingest so much fuel to keep warm. Add to that our concern to be healthy, to diet and to lose weight, and we end up eating normally what was formerly seen as being a fasting meal.The age of three substantial cooked meals a day, not untypical a century ago, would seem like gross over-indulgence to many today. Even where it survives in a modified form - such as an Oxford college - it is there to cater to and for young people burning up calories on the river or sports field.