Quadratura circuli (1643): an Oxford lecture timetable in tabular form

Quadratura circuli (1643): an Oxford lecture timetable in tabular form

Title: Quadratura circuli, studiorum & exercitii academici, priden editi. Quâ, Encyclopaedia, & cyclus seu orbis literarum, print in florentissimâ Academiâ Oxon: singulis terminis, publicè in scholis, auditoribus, proponuntur, in tabulas & planum redacta sunt. Tabula itaque haec seu schema ex corpore statutorum deprompta, cum praelectoribus, tam dotatis quam indotatis, dies, horas, libros, auditores & mulctas accuratè indicans, quotidiano studiosorum usui, & utilitati summoperè inserviat; ideo ex cyclo in hanc formam relata, quo commodious inspiciatur, ea omnia sic representat, suis columnis distributa, ubi primo indicantur professores, qui tenentur in propriis personis publicè legere, bis ad minus, in qualibet Septimanâ, sub poenâ pro singulis diebus omnissis, ut sequitur columnâ primâ; auditoribus inde certi, lectiones, libri, horae dies, reliquis columnis & mulcta auditorum toties quoties columnâ ult.

Imprint: Londini excussum : prostant apud Oct. Pullein, & Tho. Slater, 1643.

Producer: University of Oxford. ' 'In hac forma reduxit W. S.'

Bibliographical reference: Madan, Oxford Books, II, 1577. Wing / 1769:33. Wing (2nd ed.) / O997A

Physical description: 1 sheet.

Source: Bodleian Library, shelfmark Wood 423 (15).

Description. In essence, this broadsheet reduces the provision of Oxford’s statutory lectures to tabular form.  The central column lists the main subjects of the curriculum (which correspond to the lecture rooms of the Schools Quadrangle).  To the left and the right are the two days and the hours in which lectures will be held. To the left, the books are listed on which the lectures are based, and in the left margin the fees which a statutory lecturer must pay if he omits to lecture.  To the right are the categories of student who are obliged to attend these lectures, and in the margin the penalties payable for skipping lectures.  

This broadsheet is therefore precisely a 'quadratura circuli', a 'squaring of the circle', repoducing essentially the same information as the more beautifully produced 'Encyclopaedia' of 1635, but 'Tabulas et planum redacta', that is, in tabular rather than circular form.  As Madan adds, this is 'a new and rare edition of the Encyclopedia issued in 1635 (see no. 795 above), designed to show all the statutable lectures, their subjects, hours, books, and auditors, but issued at the worst possible time, when University studies were almost entirely suspended.… The only copy I have met with is in the Bodleian.'