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15th Century Ecclesiastical and Academic Worlds

An engraving showing Glasgow Cathedral from the north, around the 1750s, by Robert Paul.

The ecclesiastical and academic worlds had much in common in the 15th century.

Both were withdrawn and secluded from the outside world. They were mainly enclosed by sheltering walls. This produced an ambiance conducive to quiet study and contemplation.

Sometimes, such as in both the medieval University and the Cathedral, these enclosed internal spaces would be cloistered.

Any garden space was traditionally turned to a culinary or medicinal use. Often it was simply edged in box hedging (Buxus). During the 15th century this evolved into a more complex Knot garden, indicating the shift in emphasis referred to above.

The medieval University also had a Great Orchard garden outside its precinct. Again, this was for culinary proposes.

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