The Wild Boar story

Queens college dinner
  • Queen's College Wild Boar Christmas Dinner.
    Etching: Queen's College Governing Body
Queen's college trumpet
  • Silver trumpet; given to The Provost & Scholars in 1666 by Sir Joseph Williamson - replacing one of brass.

The trumpet is still used to call the college to dinner. Photograph: Ashmolean Photo Lab. and Queen's College Governing Body

Composite Boar's Wood
  • The Boar's Wood.
    Photo Composite:
    Beazley Archive, Ian Hiley

"The 'traditional origin' of this custom is as follows; a wild boar had taken possession of a wood not far from this college, and by his nocturnal depredations had become the terror of the neighbourhood. One day a student of this society, having wandered into the forest with the 'Logic of Aristotle' in his hand, suddenly perceived the furious animal approaching him. Not at all alarmed, he awaited his attack with great 'logical' composure, and, when in the act of springing on him, he thrust the Aristotle into the boar's throat, crying *gracca cum est, and instantly choaked him."
Oxford University and City Guide, 1820, page 21

* A rough translation is "with the compliments of the Greeks"