- St John's isn't on the main tourist trail of colleges, but it has some outstanding features that make it well worth visiting. Founded in 1437 as St Bernard's (a college for Cistercian students), it was dissolved in 1539 and became St John's 16 years later under the patronage of merchant tailor Sir Thomas White. St John's remained a single-sex college until women were admitted in 1979. The peaceful atmosphere of Canterbury Quad, with its impressive classical architecture, is the ideal setting for the gates through to the college gardens. Designed by Capability Brown in the 18th century, they are perhaps the finest to be found in any Oxford college.
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