The Jagellonian's Collegium Maius

Trip Start Apr 09, 2010
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Trip End Apr 26, 2010


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Flag of Poland  , Southern Poland,
Saturday, April 24, 2010

Krakow is a university town, and many of the Jagellonian buildings are near the town center. The most impressive ones were built during the 19th c. However, on Saturday I visited one of the original buildings - the Collegium Maius, now the Jagellonian University Museum. The building was a theological school for Catholic priests starting in the 1400's. It is a very small school. The guide showed us the library, the refectory and a few other rooms that were used by the faculty and students. During World War II, professors were carted off to concentration camps, but Karol Józef Wojtyła was still able to study here in secret, off-campus classrooms as the war progressed.

I got to the museum thinking that the first tour was at 9am, rather than 10, but was rewarded with the unexpected treat of seeing and hearing the clock strike and the mechanical academic procession take place in the courtyard. I found the fountain behind the construction zone, and luckily the light was just right to get a good picture.

The rooms are a mixture of original furniture and representative items added later. Lots of carved woodwork makes the rooms feel warm and cozy, although of course people were probably chilly most of the time.
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