Collegium Maius and Jagiellonian University

ul. Jagiellońska 15, 31-010 Kraków

The Jagiellonian University, founded by King Casimir III the Great in 1364 as the Kraków Academy, is the oldest Polish university, and the second oldest university in this part of Europe (following the Charles University in Prague, which was established in 1348). Unfortunately, after the king's death, the academy deteriorated and ended its activity.

Only in the 1390s did a representative of King Władysław II Jagiełło and Queen Jadwiga buy a stately brick house from Szczepan Pęcherz, an heir of Rzeszotary, for the use of the university. At the time, the building was located in the contemporary Jewish district, at the intersection of the present Św. Anny and Jagiellońska streets. This was the origin of Collegium Maius – the first seat of the university, reestablished in the 1400.

In the subsequent decades, it became necessary to expand the institution due to the increasing number of students and professors. The first stage of the expansion (around 1440) gave rise to the so-called Stuba Comunnis (common chamber) with its characteristic bay on the first floor, looking over Jagiellońska Street.

Between 1507 and 1509, the university underwent thorough reconstruction. Apart from the great hall and the library, the reconstructed Collegium Maius contained lecture rooms, and the upper floors were converted into apartments for the professors.

Today, Collegium Maius houses the Jagiellonian University Museum. Crowds gather in the courtyard, drawn by a clock and its features, which include a range of melodies as well as a procession of moving figurines depicting the most important people associated with the university. The clock is activated daily at: 9:00 am, 11:00 am, 3:00 pm and 5:00 pm.

Date: 2016-05-05 Show ticket
News author: Karol Róg
News Publisher: Portal główny EN
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