The History of some Street Names
The actual Corn Market, built in 1536, was demolished in 1644, so that the lead roof could be melted down for bullets, for use in the civil war.
St. Frideswide, the patron saint of Oxford, was a nun so holy that when she prayed for relief from a persistent admirer, the latter was struck blind. She presumably felt this was an unduly harsh punishment, since his sight was restored by the water from her holy well. She is depicted in a window by Burne-Jones in the Latin Chapel of the Cathedral.
There was a thriving Jewish community in Oxford in the 12th & 13th centuries, but Edward 1 expelled all Jews from this country in 1290. They were not officially re-admitted until 1656.
Research has failed to track down a saint called Aldate, though there is a church of this name in Gloucester. It may be a corruption of Eldred or Olave or some other audio-confusable name, but current opinion favours the “Old Gate” theory.
Newcomers to the city will not realise how easy it was to move from north to south 20 or so years ago. Legend has it that on the day when the one-way system was introduced some enterprising undergraduates rearranged the signs so that everyone ended up in Carfax.
Mary Potter was obviously a nice and clean-minded lady, but Magpie Lane was also know as Gropecunt Lane, giving a very vivid depiction of what might have gone on there.