The Great Gate, begun in 1490 is the entrance to King's Hall and was completed in 1535; it is the largest of all the college gates. The Great Gate is also home to the famous statue of founder Henry VIII whose sceptre was replaced by a chair leg by students in the 19th century.
The tourist porter at the Great Gate is available to let visitors know which parts of the College are open.
The College of superlatives in Cambridge: Trinity is the largest, richest and most prestigious of the 31 Colleges. It was founded by Henry VIII as a merger of two older Colleges (Michaelhouse and King's Hall) in 1546. Of all 88 Nobel Prizes attributed to the University of Cambridge, 33 have their origin at Trinity College. Together with St. John's and King's, it is one of the three "Royal Colleges", which give them a special role in ceremonial issues. Famous alumni include Sir Isaac Newton and King Edward VII.
Most probably, you will enter King's College through the gatehouse facing King's Parade. There, you will find and inscription of Edward III. (who refounded King's Hall in 1337) and a statue of Henry VIII. Once, he had a sword in his right hand, but it was once replaced by a table leg - probably by student pranksters (I have St. John's in suspicion - see below...). The gatehouse and King's Hostel are the only remaining structures of King's Hall - there is unfortunately nothing remaining of Michaelhouse. Once you paid the entry fee, you are free to roam the grounds and admire the architectural details of these Tudor and Stewart structures. The 17th century Wren Library and the chapel are usually open for the public, but even with both of them closed, a visit to Trinity is worth its visit.
Trinity has a long-standing, but friendly rivalry with neighbouring St. John's. It includes a race between the Colleges to become the first to have a clock tower built. Trinity eventually won - by erecting a wooden tower - and you can still see the place where the clock was supposed to be at St. John's. This led to the famous anecdote which explains the reason why the clock at Trinity chimes twice - once for Trinity and once for St. John's. Other anecdotes say that there is no "J" staircase at Trinity because of the rivalry (The reason is rather that there is no "J" in the Latin alphabet) or explain why two muzzle cannons point towards the neighbouring College. All of them are of rather doubtful truth.... The Great Court Run is another tradition at Trinity which became famous through the 1981 film "Chariots of Fire" and the even more famous song. Please see my "Local Costum" tip for that.
If you have to chose only one College to visit, I would chose King's College for its chapel. However, Trinity would be my immediate second choice as no other College represents the traditions of cambridge University in the way Trinity does. Please check out my tip “Visiting the Colleges” for some details you should know before planning your visit.
Trinity College is the largest college in the University of Cambridge. Visitors can enter the grounds and chapel for small addmission fee. The clock on the tower chimes the hour twice.This courtyard was portrayed in the film "Chariots of Fire" with the race between Harold Abrahams and Lord Burghley[the race is fictitious ]
We only had time to visit one college and as we were on our way to find King's College. we poked our noses into the courtyard of Trinity College and were told that this was the best college to visit so we paid our admission fee of L2.20, grabbed a leaflet and off we went to explore. We weren't able to visit the library as we were there after 2 pm but we did see the hall which reminded me of something out of a Harry Potter movie and the Chapel.
Trinity is the wealthiest college in Cambridge, it was founded by Henry VIII in 1546 from property seized from the monasteries.
Wren Library open Monday-Friday 12pm-2pm
Hall open daily 3 pm-5 pm
Chapel open daily 10am-5pm
Trinity College is the most wealthy college in Cambridge. Isaac Newton is their most famous graduate and there is a statue of him in the chapel - Kristi commented that he had such a little head for such a brainy man. Other famous graduates are Tennyson, Lord Byron & 31 noble prize winners.
It was GBP2.20 to walk around the college grounds, the chapel & the canteen. The college is closed at times to the public so best to check the web page
We were told by our guide that Trinity college & St John's college being their neighbour are big rivals in both sport & academia. There is no staircases inside starting with the letter J which led to some speculations this was because of their rivals St John's, however the real reason is that there is no J in the Roman alphabet.
Our guide also told us that St John's & Trinity college held a competition to see who could erect a clock tower first. St John's had space for a clock in their designs and planned to build it in, however Trinity college beat them to it by erecting one out of wood thus winning the right to have a clock. There is a noticiable empty space where the clock would have been at St John's college. The Trinity clock chimes twice, some say the second chime is to rub St John's noses in the fact they have no clock. The real reason is the chimes that strike on the hour are chimed once in low note & again in high note.
Trinity College is the largest college in the University. The College was founded by King Henry VIII in 1546, it was made up of two standing colleges, the King's Hall and Michaelhouse.
Statues of King James I and his wife and their son Prince Charles can be seen along with Sir Isaac Newtons and W.M. Thackeray, who both lived in he College.
The clock strikes twice on the hour, once for the Trinity College and once for the St Johns college that does not sport a clock although when it was built it did have a space left to have a clock installed.
This is another famous, often-visited place in Cambridge. It's particularly known for the highly ornate, decorative gate.
It was founded in 1546 by King Henry VIII, who merged Michaelhouse and King's Hall colleges. The majority of its buildings date back to the 16th and 17th centuries. Its graduates have included Sir Isaac Newton, Francis Bacon, James Clerk Maxwell, Lord Byron, Alfred Lord Tennyson, and countless others. Today, it has about 600 undergraduates, 300 graduate students, and 160 fellows.
We took a short walk around the gardens of the college after visiting the library.
"Trinity College was founded by Henry VIII in 1546 as part of the University of Cambridge. Since then Trinity has flourished and grown, and is now a home to around 600 undergraduates, 300 graduates, and over 160 Fellows. Princes, spies, poets and prime-ministers have all been taught here, and members of the College go on to a very wide range of professions and careers after taking degrees in all the subjects the University offers."
We were dropped off here on our way to Sir Christopger Wren's library, which is situated inside Trinity College.
"The Great Gate, built in 1530 as part of King's Hall and the largest of all the college gates, is the only one with two doors, one large and one small. When a new Master is admitted, a ceremony is held at the larger gate.
Above the Great Gate, on the outside of the College, is a statue of the College's founder, King Henry VIII. Some years ago, his sceptre was replaced by a chairleg as an undergraduate prank; its current whereabouts are unknown. Underneath are the coats of arms of Edward III and his sons.
Among the cobbles outside the Gate is a very unusual stone, geologically speaking, which has the letters TCN inscribed on it in memory of a past Senior Bursar, T. C. Nicholas, who was a Fellow of Trinity from before the First World War until he died in 1992 aged 101.
To the right are the former rooms of Sir Isaac Newton, the famous mathematician and natural philosopher. In what was once his garden is an apple tree reputedly descended from one at his home at Woolsthorpe in Lincolnshire. The novelist William Thackeray also lived on the same staircase in what is now part of the Porter's Lodge.
As you step through the Gate, the roof bosses feature the coats of arms of previous Masters including Lord (Rab) Butler (1965-78) and William Bill (1551-53).
Facing inwards towards Great Court are statues of King James I, his wife Anne of Denmark and his heir, Prince Charles, later King Charles I."
This is a fascinating place to visit if you’re into any sort of scientific history. My girlfriend wanted to see this place as it houses some very important artefacts relating to Sir Isaac Newton.
The library was built specifically on the first floor to save it from any possible flooding damage from the nearby river Cam. It was designed by Sir Christopher Wren in in1676 and completed in 1695. It is credited as being one of the first libraries to be built with large windows to give comfortable light levels to aid readers
There are six exhibition cases in the Wren with a selection from the Library's collections on display. Almost always on view are the oldest book in the Library (the Epistles of St Paul, produced in the 8th century, Trinity MS B.10.5), Newton's own copy of the first edition of Principia containing his annotations for the second edition (NQ.16.200) and A.A. Milne's manuscript of Winnie-the-Pooh (Trinity Add.MS.c.200).
The Wren Library is open to the general public between 12 noon and 2.00pm Monday to Friday and on Saturday mornings in Full Term, 10.30 am to 12.30 pm. Numbers are restricted to 15 at a time. Photography without the use of a flash is permitted.
We went in November and so there wasn’t any sort of a queue to get in. I’m not so sure that we’d have been so lucky at the height of the summer season.
There is no admission charge for the Wren Library, though there is a charge for entry to the rest of the college.
Trinity College is located on Trinity Street. Founded by Henry VII in 1546. Prince Charles, Sir Isaac Newton, Lord Byron, Francis Bacon, and Alfred Lord Tennyson were students here. The Wren Library was built between 1676 and 1690 by Sir Christopher Wren who also designed St Paul's Cathedral. Lord Byron kept a bear in his rooms at Trinity and he led it around the college on a chain. Look for the tree outside Trinity's gate, said to descend from Newton's famous apple tree.