Rhodes House is part of the University of Oxford in England. It is located on South Parks Road in central Oxford, and was built in memory of Cecil Rhodes, an alumnus of the university and a major benefactor.
The will of Cecil Rhodes (1853–1902) created scholarships that became known as Rhodes Scholarships, administered by the Rhodes Trust.
During 1931, Albert Einstein delivered a series of three lectures at Rhodes House. Edmund Bowen, a chemistry don at the university, saved the blackboard used in the second lecture (on 16 May). Einstein's Blackboard, now an iconic object, can still be seen at the Museum of the History of Science in Oxford, formally presented by Sir Francis Wylie, the Warden of Rhodes House at the time.
Rhodes House was the location for one of the gigs of the band Ugly Rumours in the early 1970s, of which former British Prime Minister Tony Blair was a member. The Oxcentrics jazz band also played at Rhodes House.
Portraits at Rhodes House
Rhodes House houses a significant collection of paintings and photographic portraits and busts, including of:
- Queen Elizabeth II
- Cecil Rhodes, the Founder of the Rhodes Scholarships
- John MacBain, Second Century Founder of the Rhodes Scholarships
- George Robert Parkin, the founding Organizing Secretary of the Rhodes Trust
- busts of early Rhodes Trustees Viscount Milner and Otto Beit
- Nelson Mandela, who joined his name with Cecil Rhodes in the Mandela Rhodes Foundation
- distinguished Rhodes Scholars such as former US President Bill Clinton, the first African-American Rhodes Scholar Alain Locke, former Jamaican Prime Minister Norman Manley and Jamaican cultural icon Rex Nettleford, the Canadian neuroscientist Wilder Penfield, and former Australian Prime Minister Bob Hawke
- former Chairs of the Rhodes Trust, including Sir Kenneth Wheare, Robert Blake, Baron Blake, and Lord Waldegrave of North Hill
- former Wardens of Rhodes House – Sir Francis Wylie, Sir Carleton Allen, Sir Edgar Williams, Dr Robin Fletcher, Sir Anthony Kenny, Dr John Rowett, Sir Colin Lucas, and Professor Donald Markwell.
The Rhodes Trust
The Rhodes Trust is based at Rhodes House. The Rhodes Trust, established in 1902 under the terms and conditions of the will of Cecil Rhodes, and by subsequent Acts of Parliament, is an educational charity whose principal activity is to support scholars selected from the citizens of 14 specified geographic constituencies to study at the University of Oxford. Rhodes Scholarships for up to three years have been awarded annually since 1903. Cecil Rhodes' goals in creating the Scholarships were to promote civic-minded leadership among young people with (in the words of his 1899 Will) "moral force of character and instincts to lead", and (in the words of a 1901 codicil to his Will) to help "render war impossible" through promoting understanding between the great powers.
In 2002, the Rhodes Trust partnered with Nelson Mandela to establish the Mandela Rhodes Scholarship. The Rhodes Trust provides the Rhodes Scholarships in partnership with the Second Century Founder, John McCall MacBain, and other generous benefactors.
The Trust is governed by a Board of Trustees. The current Warden of Rhodes House is Charles R. Conn, who acts as Secretary to the Rhodes Trust.
- Sir John Hood (New Zealand & Worcester 1976), Chairman (since 2011)
- Michael G. McCaffery (Pennsylvania & Merton 1975) (since 2007)
- Professor Ngaire Woods (New Zealand & Balliol 1987) (since 2009)
- Dominic Barton (British Columbia & Brasenose 1984) (since 2010)
- Don Gogel (New Jersey & Balliol 1971) (since 2010)
- Professor Margaret MacMillan (since 2010)
- John McCall MacBain (Quebec & Wadham 1980) (since 2010)
- Festus Mogae (since 2010)
- N. R. Narayana Murthy (since 2010)
- Karen Stevenson (Maryland & Magdalen 1979) (since 2010)
- John Wylie (Queensland & Balliol 1983) (since 2010)
- Dame Helen Ghosh (since 2011)
- Dr Andrew Graham (since 2013)
- Glen James (since 2014)
- Andrew Banks (since 2014)
- Professor Dame Carol Robinson (since 2015)
- Nicholas Oppenheimer (since 2015)
- Julian Thompson (Diocesan College, Rondebosch and Worcester, 1953) (trustee since 2002, emeritus since 2015)
- Professor Sir John Bell (Alberta & Magdalen 1975) (since 2002) (trustee since 2002, emeritus since 2015)
Notable former trustees
- The Rt. Hon. Lord Butler of Brockwell
- Sir Rod Eddington
- The Rt. Hon. The 4th Earl Grey
- The Rt. Hon. The 1st Viscount Hailsham
- Rudyard Kipling
List of Chairmen of the Trust
- Earl of Rosebery 1902–1917
- Viscount Milner 1917–1925
- Sir Otto Beit 1925–1930
- Lord Lovat 1930–1933
- Rt Hon. L. S. Amery 1933–1955
- Sir Edward Peacock 1955–1962
- Sir Kenneth Wheare 1962–1969
- Sir George Abell 1969–1974
- Viscount Harcourt 1974–1979
- Sir William Paton 1979–1982
- Lord Blake 1983–1987
- Sir John Baring, later Lord Ashburton 1987–1999
- Sir Richard Southwood 1999–2002
- The Rt. Hon. Lord Waldegrave of North Hill 2002–2011
- Sir John Hood 2011–Present
List of Wardens
- Sir Francis Wylie 1903–1931
- Professor Sir Carleton Allen 1931–1952
- Brigadier Sir Edgar Williams 1952–1980
- Dr Robin Fletcher 1980–1989
- Sir Anthony Kenny 1989–1999
- Dr John Rowett 1999–2004
- Sir Colin Lucas 2004–2009
- Professor Don Markwell 2009–2012
- Dr Andrew Graham Acting Warden 2012–2013
- Charles R. Conn 2013–Present
- History, The Rhodes Trust, Oxford, UK.
- Albert Einstein — Honours, prizes and awards: Oxford University, Albert Einstein in the World Wide Web, Germany.
- Albert Einstein, Museum of the History of Science, Oxford, UK.
- Charity Commission. RHODES TRUST - PUBLIC PURPOSES FUND, registered charity no. 232492.
- The Rhodes Trust, Rhodes House, Oxford, UK.
- See, e.g., "To 'render war impossible': the Rhodes Scholarships, educational relations between countries, and peace" in Donald Markwell, "Instincts to Lead": On Leadership, Peace, and Education, 2013.
- Mandela Rhodes Foundation (2010) The Mandela Rhodes Scholarships Retrieved 1 October 2012
- Rhodes Trust Board of Trustees, Rhodes House, Oxford, UK.
- "The Rhodes Trust and Trustees". Rhodes House.
- Philip Ziegler. Legacy: Cecil Rhodes, the Rhodes Trust and Rhodes Scholarships (Yale University Press, 2008); 388 pp. ISBN 978-0-300-11835-3.
- R.W. Johnson. Look Back in Laughter: Oxford's Postwar Golden Age (Threshold Press, 2015); 260 pp. ISBN 978-1-903152-35-5. Has a critical account of the decline of the Rhodes Trust under Warden John Rowett, and commends recovery under Wardens Donald Markwell and Charles R. Conn.
Books by former Wardens of Rhodes House, Oxford:
- Anthony Kenny, The History of the Rhodes Trust. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press, 2001.
- Donald Markwell, "Instincts to Lead": On Leadership, Peace, and Education, 2013.
- Rhodes House
- The Rhodes Trust
- Bodleian Library of Commonwealth and African Studies at Rhodes House (Rhodes House Library)
- Virtual tour of Rhodes House