Nocturnal Climbing at Cambridge University: Background information when reading The Night Climbers

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The Night Climbers

A Novel

by Ivo Stourton

The Night Climbers by Ivo Stourton X
The Night Climbers by Ivo Stourton
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  • First Published:
    Sep 2007, 336 pages

    Jun 2008, 336 pages


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About this Book

Nocturnal Climbing at Cambridge University

This article relates to The Night Climbers

Print Review

Cambridge, the second oldest university in the English-speaking world, is located in the East of England. It is said that it was established by a group of scholars in the early 13th century who left Oxford (which was established in the 11th century) after two of their number were accused of murdering a local and hung by town authorities. Today, Cambridge consists of 31 colleges, of which three are all-female; the last all-male college, Magdalene (pronounced maudlin), started to admit women in 1988. In 2007 the influential Times Higher Education Supplement ranked Cambridge as the fourth best university overall in the world after Harvard, Stanford and the University of California at Berkeley - but first in the natural sciences, biomedicine and arts & humanities.

American readers may be stunned to learn that the cost of a year of education at Cambridge for a British citizen is about 3,000 English pounds (~$6,000). This is in line with other British universities. Student loans are available for the full amount of tuition, and means-tested grants are available to offset living costs. About one-third of Cambridge's income comes from UK government funding for teaching and research, another third from research grants; endowment income contributes about 6%.

The Night Climbers of Cambridge, the much sought after book described in Ivo Stourton's The Night Climbers does exist, but is not as rare or hard to find as described in the book. In fact, a complete copy can be read by clickingthis link. This guide to nocturnal climbing in Cambridge was written under the pseudonym Whipplesnaith and first published in 1937 by Chatto and Windus. Apparently Whipplesnaith is a pseudonym for Noel Howard Symington who wrote the book with the help of several others. A new edition was published by the Cambridge based Oleander Press in late 2007.

Interesting link: Ivo Stourton talking about The Night Climbers.

Filed under Places, Cultures & Identities

This "beyond the book article" relates to The Night Climbers. It originally ran in September 2007 and has been updated for the June 2008 paperback edition. Go to magazine.

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