Much to their surprise, on the eve of their departure from Oxford, the vice-chancellor of the university invited the Ladies Who Travel to tea in his splendid offices. He expressed his appreciation to @katieshilk for spearheading the Ladies' comprehensive tour of his university and to the Ladies for their promotion of the university, its colleges, and the fabled city of the dreaming spires surrounding them. In thanks, he presented @katieshilk with an original botanical print by William Baxter, curator of the University of Oxford Botanical Gardens from 1813 to 1833, of the snakeshead fritillaria, a flower long associated with the Oxford because it blooms prolifically in Magdalen (Maudlin, trust me) College gardens in spring.

This event gave the Ladies the perfect opportunity to present @katieshilk with their own thank you gifts: a first edition of The University of Oxford: A New History, inscribed by both the author and the vice-chancellor; a stuffed dodo (the bird is the university's unofficial mascot); a Cheshire Cat ornament sporting the university seal (Alice in Wonderland author Charles Dodgson aka Lewis Carroll instructed in mathematics at Christ Church College); and for lagniappe, an Oxford refrigerator magnet. ;-)

The Ladies thought it appropriate to wear British designers to this august ceremony. Here--

Dress and shawl: Alexander McQueen
Shoes: Kurt Geiger
Bag: Vivienne Westwwod
Earrings: Astley Clarke Couture
Bracelet: Timothy Roe
Ring: Babette Wasserman
Watch: Burberry

The vice-chancellor is the senior officer of the university. The photo shows the current vice-chancellor, noted research chemist Andrew Hamilton. Before accepting his position, he taught at Princeton, the University of Pittsburgh (my son's alma mater), and Yale. The vice-chancellor serves a seven-year term.

The current chancellor is Christopher Francis, Lord Patten of Barnes. "The chancellor is usually an eminent public figure elected for life and serves as the titular head of the University, presiding over all major ceremonies." Formerly a Conservative MP, Lord Patten served as the last governor of Hong Kong and as chancellor of Newcastle University, He is an honorary fellow of Balliol College and has been chair of the BBC since 2011.

@katieshilk @parmelia @blessingfan13 @helenadelaide @sadiesue @empresskimz1 @trickster-kat [Did I miss anyone?]
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