Circa 1888 Gonville and Caius College extended St Michael’s Court resulting in the demolition of the existing buildings at this location.
The Little Gift Shop on the Corner
Cambridge Inscriptions Explained by Nancy Gregory (2006) comments on this inscription.
EX PRUDENTIA ET LITTERIS VIRTUTIS PETRA FIRMATIS IMMORTALITAS
From wisdom and learning, founded upon the rock of virtue, come immortality
It dates back only to 1901-1904 when this block was built by Gonville and Caius College to provide more accommodation. The words are supposed to be those of John Caius, explaining the significance of the Caius arms granted to him in 1561.
On the coat of arms the two serpents represent wisdom, the books portrays learning and the buckles, keys (i.e. Caius). The stone slab is the rock of virtue and the sengrene (large flower) and ‘flowers gentle’ (small flowers) stand for immortality.
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