THE MAIN BUILDING OF TARTU UNIVERSITY
Location: N58° 22` 51.9", E26° 43` 11.7"
The main building of Tartu University is located in the centre of Tartu. This house is almost a textbook example of classicistic style buildings in Estonia. Traditionally, the Rector’s Office and the Faculty of Humanities, have been located in the main building, in recent decades also the Faculty of Theology. Today, the Rector's Office is located in the southern wing of the building. There are not lectures held in the main building anymore. Studying takes place in the other buildings of the university.
Although the University of Tartu was established already in 1632 by Gustav II Adolf, the King of Sweden, the current building was built from 1804 to 1809 at the power of Tsarist Russia according to the design created by architect Johann Wilhelm Krause. Later a church and the wings were built. There the building houses the Art Museum of the university, which collection of art was already started 200 years ago. This is the only museum in Estonia, which exhibits antique art, and enables meeting with the genuine Egyptian mummy.
The Assembly Hall is the most beautiful room in the main building. The Assembly Hall inauguration ceremony was held on 31 July 1809, and from that day on, all major events at the university have been celebrated there. The hall is also a superb venue for concerts.
The attic of the main building contains a historical lock-up room. Students who had offended public morality and the code of student conduct at the University were detained there. Punishments involving detainment in the lock-up were meted out by the university's tribunal and it varied from a few days to three weeks. Many students channeled their lock-up experience into scribbled or carved drawings, verses or monograms, many of which have been preserved on the walls, ceiling and door of the lock-up. The punishment room has been preserved and visitors can see the walls with these original drawings left there by the 19th-century students.
Today the University of Tartu has been listed as the only university from Baltic countries among the world’s 3% of the best universities, According to two most prestigious university rankings it is ranked among the best 400 universities in the world. The University of Tartu has also got four colleges: Pärnu College, Narva College, The College of Europe and Viljandi Culture Academy. It is possible to study in four faculties: Faculty of Arts and Humanities, Faculty of Social Sciences, Faculty of Medicine and Faculty of Science and Technology.
The University also comprises the Estonian Genome Center, botanical gardens, the museums of arts, history, geology and zoology, library and Youth Academy. There were 13,750 students including 800 international students from 70 countries studying at the university at the beginning of year 2016.