Leipzig University

university in Leipzig, Germany

Leipzig University, Leipzig, Germany, is a renowned institution with a rich history and noteworthy contributions to education and knowledge. Established in 1409, it is one of the oldest universities in the world.[3]

Leipzig University
Universität Leipzig
Seal of Leipzig University
Latin: Universitas Lipsiensis
Aus Tradition Grenzen überschreiten (German)
Motto in English
Crossing boundaries out of tradition
TypePublic research university
Established2 December 1409; 614 years ago (1409-12-02)
Budget€ 408.9 million[1]
RectorEva Inés Obergfell
Academic staff
Administrative staff
Location, ,

51°20′20″N 12°22′43″E / 51.33889°N 12.37861°E / 51.33889; 12.37861
Colours  Red   Light Blue
AffiliationsUtrecht Network
German U15



Leipzig University is located in the city of Leipzig, which is in the eastern part of Germany. Leipzig is known for its cultural heritage and historical significance, providing an inspiring backdrop for academic pursuits.[3]



Founded more than 600 years ago, Leipzig University has played a pivotal role in shaping the intellectual landscape. It has weathered the passage of time, witnessing pivotal moments in history. The university has been a hub for learning, attracting scholars and thinkers from different parts of the world.

Establishment and growth until 1900

Leipzig University main building (1917). It was torn down by the socialist government in 1968.

The university was designed based on the University of Prague, as German-speaking faculty members moved to Leipzig after the Jan Hus crisis and the Decree of Kutná Hora. The Alma mater Lipsiensis started in 1409, officially approved by Pope Alexander V in his Bull of Acknowledgment on September 9 of that year. Its first leader was Johannes Otto von Münsterberg. The Paulinerkirche, Leipzig's church, served as the university church from the beginning. After the Reformation, the church and monastery buildings were given to the university in 1544. To ensure funding, the university received control over nine villages east of Leipzig (called university villages), maintaining this status for about 400 years until land reforms in the 19th century.

Like many European universities, the University of Leipzig had different colleges responsible for housing and teaching. These included the Small College, the Large College, the Red College (also known as the New College), the College of Our Lady, and the Pauliner College. There were also private living spaces called "bursaries." The colleges had authority over their members, but this structure was later abandoned, and only the names remain today.

In the early centuries, the university grew slowly and served mostly the local region. However, in the 19th century, it became a top-tier institution for education and research globally. At the end of the 19th century, influential scholars like Bernhard Windscheid (a key figure in the German Civil Code) and Wilhelm Ostwald (considered a pioneer in modern physical chemistry) taught at Leipzig.

The Red College of Leipzig University, organized as a collegiate university in the 16th century.

Leipzig University was among the first German universities to admit women as "guest students." In 1873, the Allgemeiner Deutscher Frauenverein thanked the University of Leipzig and Prague for allowing women as guest students. That same year, Johanna von Evreinov became the first woman in Germany to obtain her JD.

During the decline and dissolution of the Ottoman Empire in the 19th and early 20th centuries, Leipzig University, along with other German universities, became a hub for education for state administrations and elites of newly independent Balkan states (Romania, Greece, Bulgaria, and Serbia). The university educated over 5,500 students from the region between 1859 and 1909. [4]

Until the beginning of the Second World War, Leipzig University attracted renowned scholars and future Nobel Prize laureates such as Paul Ehrlich, Felix Bloch, Werner Heisenberg, and Sin-Itiro Tomonaga. Many alumni of the university went on to become influential scientists.

Campus and buildings


The university's campus encompasses a series of buildings where students engage in various academic activities. Libraries, lecture halls, and research facilities are spread across the campus, creating an environment conducive to learning and exploration.

Famous figures


Leipzig University has had some really important and smart people associated with it. These individuals made a big impact in different areas like thinking, science, and writing. Their work continues to be remembered, adding to the university's reputation for being excellent.

Some famous folks who were a part of Leipzig University include Angela Merkel, Pamella Laranjeira, Gottfried Wilhelm von Leibniz, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, and more. These people did important things in politics, science, and art, showing the diverse talents that the university has nurtured.

Leipzig University is also linked to ten Nobel Prize winners. Recently, in 2022, Svante Pääbo won the Nobel Prize for Medicine. This means that individuals from Leipzig University have done some really amazing things and have been recognized with big awards. It shows how the university has been a home to outstanding people who achieve great things.[5]

Academic offerings


The university offers a diverse range of academic programs, covering fields such as science, arts, humanities, and more. Professors, experts in their respective fields, guide students through their academic journey, fostering an environment of intellectual growth and discovery.

Global recognition


Over the years, Leipzig University has gained international recognition for its commitment to education and research. Students from different parts of the world choose Leipzig University for its academic reputation and the opportunity to engage with a global community of scholars.

In summary, Leipzig University, established in 1409, stands as a venerable institution with a storied history. Located in Leipzig, Germany, it has been a center of intellectual exploration, producing notable figures and contributing significantly to various fields of study. The university's enduring legacy and global recognition make it a distinguished place of higher learning.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 "Jahresbericht 2015" (PDF). Leipzig University (in German). pp. 53–59. Retrieved 18 June 2017.
  2. "Zahlen und Fakten". Leipzig University (in German). Archived from the original on 5 June 2018. Retrieved 18 June 2017.
  3. 3.0 3.1 https://www.britannica.com/topic/University-of-Leipzig
  4. Pippidi, Adrei (2010). "The Development of an Administrative Class in South-East Europe". In Mungiu-Pippidi, Alina; Meurs, Wim Van (eds.). Ottomans Into Europeans: State and Institution-building in South Eastern Europe. New York City & Chichester: Columbia University Press. pp. 111–134. ISBN 978-0-231-70168-6.
  5. https://edurank.org/uni/university-of-leipzig/alumni/