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Oxford Inscriptions: Peace stone at Carfax


Peace stone at Carfax

 

PEACE
was proclaim’d
In the CITY of
OXFORD
JUNE 1814

There is a more modern inscribed stone immediately below the peace stone, which adds no information whatsoever:

THE STONE ABOVE
COMMEMORATES
THE PEACE OF
1814

In 1814 this peace stone was set in the north side of the tower of the original medieval Church of St Martin at Carfax. This church was in the centre of the City of Oxford where four roads meet, and it was also the City Church.

It refers to the short-lived peace proclaimed on 27 June 1814 when Napoleon was imprisoned on Elba. Two peace stones were put up in Oxford to commemorate the event: the other one is at the Plain roundabout

The medieval church of St Martin became unsafe in 1820 and was demolished except for its thirteenth-century west tower; and the church that replaced it was in turn demolished in 1896: again the medieval tower with this peace stone on its north outside wall survived.

To view this peace stone it is necessary to pass through the café at Carfax

See also:

  • Wikipedia: Treaty of Paris (1814)
  • G. V. Cox, Reminiscences of Oxford (London: Macmillan & Co, 1868), pp. 73–76, where he describes the “great event” that took place in Oxford in 1814
  • Christopher Danzig, “The big junket” in Oxford Today for Trinity Term 2014 which describes how the victorious sovereigns celebrating the imprisonment of Napoleon descended on Oxford on Tuesday 14 June 1814, with King Frederick William and Marshal Blucher receiving honorary degrees in the Sheldonian Theatre
Stephanie Jenkins, 2013