The University of Oxford is the oldest university in the Anglo-Saxon world, and one of the most prestigious in Europe and the world together with Cambridge. Sometimes the Oxbridge expression is used to refer both to the University of Oxford and to the University of Cambridge. The two universities have a great tradition of competing against one another. The university's founding date is uncertain and could have been repeatedly on several occasions, but there is evidence of a study and teaching center at least since 1096. When Henry II of England forbade British students to study at the University of Paris in 1167, led many British scholars to return home, thus making Oxford grow very quickly. In 1188, the historian Gerard of Wales made a public reading to assemble the Oxonian students, and two years later, in 1190, came the first foreign student: Emo of Friesland. The foundation of the first residence for students (future "colleges") and the establishment of the role of the Chancellor. date back to that period. In the same period, some private benefactors began to found colleges for self-defending students. Among the first to ride this line were William of Durham, who founded University College in 1249, and John Balliol, who was dedicated to today's Balliol College. Another benefactor, Walter de Merton, set a set of rules and rules to be respected in college communities: in this sense, his Merton College became an example for similar settlements in Oxford, even exceeding Oxfordshire borders and influencing also on Cambridge University. Later, an increasing number of students began to reside in colleges, thus abandoning residences held by religious communities. In 1333-34 there was an attempt by some students to found a new academy at Stamford, Lincolnshire; this project was blocked by the universities of Oxford and Cambridge, with the consent of King Edward III. Thus, Oxford and Cambridge became the only universities on albion soil: this truly academic duopoly, unusual in Western Europe, was broken only in the 1820s. Renaissance thought had found fertile ground in Oxford since the end of Fifteenth century. Among the professors of this period, especially noteable are William Grocyn, who contributed to the great rediscovery of Greek language in those years, and John Colet, known for his Bible studies. The university does not have a university campus; Conversely, the various colleges, departments, and housing are disordered in the center of the city. The only area to remember very closely the concept of 'campus' is the Science Area, or the complex of scientific departments. The University's architectural heritage is vast: among the most impressive and iconic structures, there is the Radcliffe Room, the Sheldonian Theater, used for concerts, shows, and ceremonies, and Examination Schools, where examinations and lectio magistralis. University Parks is a 28-hectare city park located in the northeast of the city. The park is home to numerous tree species, some of which are also exotic; It is also home to several sports facilities to host official and non-official matches, and an area called Genetic Garden, an experimental garden created to investigate evolutionary processes. The botanical garden, in front of High Street, is the oldest botanical garden in Great Britain. Born in 1621 for the cultivation of medicinal plants, the Orto covers an area of 1.8 hectares and contains over 8000 plant species. The University also has other green areas open to the public, including the Bagley Woods and the Christ Church Meadow.