The quadrangle was started in 1716 and finished in 1719 with money bequeathed to the College by John Radcliffe, a former student of the college tutored by Obadiah Walker and doctor to the King. Oxford's main hospital and other University buildings are also named after him.
The architectural style of the quad matches that of the earlier main quadrangle immediately to the west, although this was by then incredibly old-fashioned for almost a century. It is not a "quadrangle" in the same way as the main quadrangle, because it only has buildings on three sides; the fourth side is bounded by a high stone wall separating the garden of the Master's Lodgings to the south.
To the east is Logic Lane, a small cobbled lane through the College, connecting the High Street at the front of the College and Merton Street at the rear. A covered bridge built in 1903 connects the Radcliffe Quad buildings internally with other buildings on the High Street owned by the College to the east.
The Radcliffe Quad is where University College's matriculation photograph is taken at the start of each academic year. The quad has also been used for celebrations after undergraduate examinations.
- University College Access Guide
- 'Radcliffe Quadrangle, University College, Oxford' watercolour by Jane Carpini