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Six Centuries of food at Corpus Christi

10:00am-4:00pm on Saturday 11 September
10:00am-4:00pm on Saturday 18 September

The Parker Library, Corpus Christi College, Trumpington Street, CB2 1RH

Discover ‘Six Centuries of food at Corpus Christi College’ by visiting our drop-in exhibition in the spectacular Wilkins Room in the Parker Library. We’ll explore how food is depicted in some of our medieval manuscripts and early printed books, share objects from our College Archives, including a turtle shell from 1913 and an ostrich egg goblet, and reveal treasures from our Silver collection such as our famed auroch drinking horn, given to the College on its foundation in 1352.

The exhibition will also show how the food served to Corpus Fellow and students has changed over the years, from medieval specialities such as jugged hare to elaborate Victorian menus for Commemoration of Benefactors Dinners – and of course, complaints by undergraduates, particularly during the war years when the whalemeat dinners were deemed particularly unpalatable.

Books and manuscripts on display will include the so-called Parker Cookbook, a very special early printed cookbook perhaps owned by Margaret Parker, wife of Matthew Parker, our celebrated 16th-century Master and Archbishop of Canterbury, an illustration of a medieval imperial wedding feast of Emperor Henry and Matilda (showing what appears to be a very early illustration of a medieval pretzel on the table), and the 1621 lease for Cambridge’s beloved pub The Eagle (which has been in College ownership for centuries) requiring the rent to be paid in ‘fat gammon’.

The exhibition is curated by Landsberg Sub-Librarian Dr Alexander Devine and College Archivist Lucy Hughes

This is a drop in event, you may have to wait a short while if the room capacity is full.

Booking Information

Booking not required

During the festival you can access the exhibition online:


Full access

Additional Information

Adults, Young Adults 12 – 18, Exhibition, Film, In person, Free

The exhibition will also be available in a digital version on our website.