So, the college is a community with commensality for the dons consisting today mainly of shared lunching and dining (the Oxford jargon is 'commons', or 'common table', for lunch and 'high table' for dinner). For the undergraduates (significantly, 'junior members') commensality is about the whole experience of 'living in' college rooms with the shared meals and the team sports. Some dons and junior members may also share
the experience of chapel but the days when attendance was compulsory for both, thus forming an integral part of commensality, have long gone. Nonetheless, the image of close-knit communities sharing arcane rituals still continues to be part of the Oxbridge image. Whether all this is harmless may be debatable given the alarmingly high murder rates of the college crime novels. Evidently, too much commensality can breed fierce hatreds as well as lasting friendships.