Leipzig University

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The Leipzig University (Universität Leipzig), located in Leipzig in the Free State of Saxony, Germany, is one of the oldest universities in the world and the second-oldest university (by consecutive years of existence) in Germany. Famous alumni include Goethe, Wagner, Nietzsche, Angela Merkel, Cai Yuanpei, Tycho Brahe and eight Nobel Prize winners.

The university was founded on December 2, 1409 by Frederick I, Elector of Saxony and his brother William II, Margrave of Meissen, and originally comprised four faculties. Since its inception the university has engaged in teaching and research for over 600 years without interruption.



Founding and development until 1900

The university was modelled on the University of Prague, from which the German-speaking faculty members withdrew to Leipzig after the Jan Hus crisis and the Decree of Kutná Hora. The Alma mater Lipsiensis opened in 1409, after it had been officially endorsed by Pope Alexander V in his Bull of Acknowledgment on (September 9 of that year). Its first rector was Johann von Münsterberg. From its foundation, the Paulinerkirche served as the university church. After the Reformation the church and the monastery buildings were donated to the university in 1544.

Former main building (Skyscraper and white building).

During the first centuries the university grew slowly and was a rather regional institution. This changed, however, during the 19th century when the university became a world-class institution of higher education and research. Until the beginning of the Second World War, Leipzig University attracted a number of renowned scholars and later Nobel Prize laureates. Many of the university's alumni became important scientists.

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