It was Matthew Arnold in his poem ‘Thyrsis’ written in 1866 who described the view of Oxford from Boars Hill as:
"And that sweet city with her dreaming spires,
She needs not June for beauty's heightening".
The reverse view (in the photograph) of Boars Hill from Oxford’s St Mary the Virgin church, features Christopher Wren’s octagonal Tom Tower – one of those famous ‘dreaming spires’. Tom Tower was built in 1681, at the gateway to Christ Church College, to house the Great Tom bell, the loudest bell in Oxford that chimes 101 times each night at 9.05pm, once for each of the college’s original 101 students. The reason it strikes at 9.05pm and not 9pm is that Oxford is west of Greenwich and Great Tom continues to keep Oxford time and not Greenwich Mean Time.
Several sites on Boars Hill, including Jarn Mound, Matthew Arnold Field and land on the north side of the hill have views of the "dreaming spires" of Oxford, and are now owned by the Oxford Preservation Trust.