Paris, University of

Second oldest European university (after the University of Bologna), founded с 1170 in France.

It grew out of the cathedral schools of Notre-Dame and, with papal support, soon became a great centre of Christian orthodox teaching. In the medieval period its professors included St. Bonaventure, Albertus Magnus, and Thomas Aquinas. Its most celebrated early college was the Sorbonne, founded с 1257. The university declined somewhat under the impact of the Reformation and Counter-Reformation. With the French Revolution and Napoleon's reforms, teaching became more independent of religion and politics. By the mid-20th century the university had again become a preeminent scientific and intellectual centre. In May 1968 a Sorbonne student protest grew into a serious national crisis. This led to decentralizing reforms, the old university being replaced in 1970 by a system in Paris and its suburbs called the Universities of Paris I–XIII.

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Universalium. 2010.

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