All Souls College in Oxford is a unique academic institution and has had a unique history. But its history has been little known and its fortunes in the period 1600-1850 have been viewed, if at all, through the eyes of the Victorian university 'reformers'. This volume explores for the firsttime the 'ancien regime' in All Souls on its own terms. It brings together sixteen substantial studies of some of the college's most significant figures, among them the architect and polymath Christopher Wren and the great eighteenth-century lawyer William Blackstone. Its chapters trace theinvolvement of the College's fellows in the wider world: as key figures in the developing legal profession in London, negotiating the complexities of the English Civil War and the Restoration, as active in national and ecclesiastical politics, as innovators of early modern 'science' and technology,as participants in philosophical and intellectual debate, as significant patrons of art and architecture with European connections, and as administrators of British imperial interests and missionary efforts in the Caribbean and India.