Pembroke College, Cambridge

Pembroke College, Cambridge

Cambridge College Infobox
name = Pembroke College
infobox_colour = #000066
text_colour =
link_colour = #66CCFF

colours =
full_name =
latin_name =
latin_motto =
english_motto =
founder =
founder_pl =
named_for = Marie de St Pol, Countess of Pembroke
established = 1347
old_names = Marie Valence Hall (1347-?)
Pembroke Hall (?-1856)
location = [;xx=1862;yy=1069;mt=c;ms=100;tl=Pembroke%20College Trumpington Street]
women_only =
mature_students =
head_label = Master
head = Sir Richard Dearlove
undergraduates = 400
JCR_President =
graduates = 294
MCR_President =
SCR_President =
sister_college = Queen's College, Oxford
sister_college_pl =
homepage =
boat_club =

Pembroke College is a college of the University of Cambridge, home to over six hundred students and fellows, and is the third oldest of the colleges. Physically, it is one of the larger colleges in the university, and contains buildings from almost every century since its founding, as well as extensive and immaculately maintained gardens. The college is a financially well-to-do institution, and has a level of academic performance among the highest of all the Cambridge colleges. Not only is Pembroke College home of the first chapel designed by Sir Christopher Wren, but it is also one of the Cambridge colleges to have produced a British prime minister—no less than William Pitt the Younger. The college library, one of the finest in the university, with a Victorian neo-gothic clock tower, is endowed with an original copy of the first encyclopaedia to contain printed diagrams. The college's current master, Sir Richard Dearlove, was previously the head of the United Kingdom's Secret Intelligence Service.


On Christmas Eve 1347, Edward III granted Marie de St Pol, widow of the Earl of Pembroke, the licence for the foundation of a new educational establishment in the young university at Cambridge. The Hall of Valence Mary, as it was originally known, was thus founded to house a body of students and fellows.

The statutes were notable in that they both gave preference to students born in France who had already studied elsewhere in England, and that they required students to report fellow students if they indulged in excessive drinking or visited disreputable houses.

The college was later renamed Pembroke Hall, and finally became Pembroke College in 1856.


The first buildings comprised a single court (now called Old Court) containing all the component parts of a college - chapel, hall, kitchen and buttery, master's lodgings, students' rooms - and the statutes provided for a manciple, a cook, a barber and a laundress. Both the founding of the college and the building of the city's first college chapel (1355) required the grant of a papal bull.

The original court was the university's smallest at only 95 feet by 55 feet, but was enlarged to its current size in the nineteenth century by demolishing the south range.

The college's gatehouse, however, is original and is the oldest in Cambridge. The Hall was rebuilt in the nineteenth century by Alfred Waterhouse after he had declared the existing one unsafe.

The original chapel now forms the Old Library and has a striking seventeenth century plaster ceiling, designed by Henry Doogood, showing birds flying overhead. Around the Civil War, one of Pembroke's fellows and Chaplain to the future Charles I, Matthew Wren, was imprisoned by Oliver Cromwell. On his release after eighteen years he fulfilled a promise by hiring his nephew Christopher Wren to build a great chapel in his former college. The resulting chapel was consecrated on St Matthew's Day, 1665, and the eastern end was extended by George Gilbert Scott in 1880.

Pembroke's enclosed grounds also house some particularly well-kept gardens, sporting a huge array of carefully-selected vegetation. Highlights include "The Orchard" (a patch of semi-wild ground in the centre of the college), an impressive row of Plane Trees and an immaculately-kept bowling green which is reputed to be among the oldest in continual use in Europe.

Famous alumni of Pembroke College

"See also "

Pembroke today

Pembroke College has both graduate and undergraduate students. The undergraduate student body is represented by the Junior Parlour Committee (JPC). The graduate community is represented by the Graduate Parlour Committee (GPC). Pembroke is unusual in having its recreational rooms named as "parlours" rather than the more standard "combination room" . There are many clubs and societies organised by the students of the college, such as the college's dramatic society the Pembroke Players, which has been made famous by alumni such as Peter Cook, Tim Brooke-Taylor, Clive James and Bill Oddie and is now in its 50th year.

International Programmes

Pembroke is the only Cambridge college to have a programme allowing American students to study abroad just for the spring (Lent and Easter) terms. About 20-30 students are accepted into the programme, directed by International Programmes at Pembroke, each year.

Pembroke also hosts summer schools for Japanese high school and university students, and American university students, over the Easter and Summer vacations.


Although the canteen food is affectionally known as "Trough," this is not necessarily an accurate description and catering at Pembroke is generally thought be quite good. In 2007 the UK's first Vegan tapas bar was opened, and in spring 2008 the students voted (by a large majority) for Pembroke to serve only free-range chicken (it will be the first UK college to do so). Pembroke is Cambridge's 2nd Fairtrade College (after St Catherine's), and is also committed to serving local produce and sustainable fish where possible.

Institutions named after the college

Pembroke College, the former women's college at Brown University in the United States, was named for the principal building on the women's campus, Pembroke Hall, which was itself named in honor of the Pembroke College (Cambridge) alumnus Roger Williams, a co-founder of Rhode Island.

ee also

* Pembroke College, Oxford
* Pembroke College Boat Club

External links

* [ A virtual tour of the college]
* [ The "Pembroke Players" dramatic club]
* [ The 2008 June Event site]
* [ Pembroke Christian Union]
* [ The Junior Parlour website]
* [ The Graduate Parlour website]

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Pembroke College (Cambridge) — Pembroke College, Cambridge     …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Pembroke College (Cambridge) — 52° 12′ 06″ N 0° 07′ 09″ E / 52.2017, 0.1192 …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Pembroke Street, Cambridge — For other places with the same name, see Pembroke Street. View of the main court at Pembroke College, on the corner of Pembroke Street and Trumpington Street. Pembroke Street is a street in central Cambridge, England.[1] …   Wikipedia

  • Pembroke College Boat Club (Cambridge) — Pembroke College Boat Club is the rowing club for members of Pembroke College, Cambridge. Over the last century, crews from Pembroke have held the headship of the men s Lent Bumps on four occasions, and the headship of the men s May Bumps ten… …   Wikipedia

  • College (Cambridge) — Collèges de l université de Cambridge L université de Cambridge se compose actuellement de 31 collèges, dont trois n acceptent que des femmes (New Hall, Newnham et Lucy Cavendish). Les 28 autres sont mixtes. Magdalene est le dernier collège… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Pembroke College — There are several Pembroke Colleges:*Pembroke College, Oxford *Pembroke College, Cambridge *Pembroke College (Brown University), the former women s college …   Wikipedia

  • Pembroke College — Den Namen Pembroke College tragen zwei Institutionen: Pembroke College (Cambridge) Pembroke College (Oxford) Diese Seite ist eine Begriffsklärung zur Unterscheidung mehrerer mit demselben Wort bezeichneter Begriffe …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Pembroke College (Brown University) — Pembroke College was the coordinate women s college for Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island. It was founded in 1891 and closed in 1971.Founding and early historyThe founding of the Women s College at Brown in October 1891 marked the… …   Wikipedia

  • Pembroke College (Oxford) — Pembroke College, Oxford           …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Pembroke College — Cette page d’homonymie répertorie les différents sujets et articles partageant un même nom. Pembroke College est un collège de l université de Cambridge. Pembroke College est un collège de l université d Oxford. Catégorie : Homonymie …   Wikipédia en Français

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”