King's College London
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In the Beginning ...
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In the Beginning ...

A colour engraving of academic prize giving with a scholar in a gown bowing across a table to the Archbishop of Canterbury presenting a folder to him. This happens at the centre of a tiered lecture theatre filled with spectators, many of whom are ladies in lace bonnetsPresentation of prizes in the theatre [1840]This exhibition sets out the early history of King's College London and its site in London's West End.

Find out why the College was founded, how it was built, why the Duke of Wellington became embroiled in a duel relating to the founding of King's, and something more about the personalities and achievements of the founders and early staff and students.

A wide range of primary material relating to the history of King's can be found in the College Archives.

Those wishing to read further into the history of King's could consult:

  • F J C Hearnshaw, The centenary history of King's College London, 1828-1928 (London, 1929)
  • H Willoughby Lyle, King's and some King's men (Oxford and London, 1935)
  • Gordon Huelin, King's College London, 1828-1978 (London, 1978)
  • F F Cartwright et al, The story of King's College Hospital and its Medical School (London, 1991)
  • Christine Kenyon Jones, King's College London: in the service of society (London, 2004)

PLEASE NOTE: This exhibition initially appeared online in February 2004 to celebrate the 175th anniversary of the founding of King's. Additionally, a physical display of pictures, letters and printed books was shown at that time in the Weston Room of the Maughan Library, Chancery Lane, King’s College London. The exhibition material is now available to view as an online exhibition only.

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