Vienna, University of

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Vienna, University of

 

one of the oldest universities in Europe, founded in 1365 by Emperor Rudolf IV, who wished to set it up in competition with the University of Prague and the University of Krakow. At first it had four traditional faculties: liberal arts, law, medicine, and theology. In the 16th and 17th centuries the Jesuits were in power at the university. There was a revival of scientific activity at the university during the period of enlightened absolutism under Maria Theresa (reigned 1740-80). The second half of the 19th century marked the beginning of the flourishing of the University of Vienna. Between 1848 and 1870 the majority of the still existing scientific institutes were sounded there, and a number of specialized chairs were set up. In the second half of the 19th century the faculty of philosophy became a center of idealistic philosophical trends such as positivism and empiriocriticism. A number of prominent bourgeois philosophers were associated with the university in the 20th century. In the 1920’s the Vienna circle of logical positivists was organized at the university (R. Carnap, M. Schlick, P. Frank, and others). Associated with the university were the economists K. Menger and E. Böhm-Bawerk, the Sanskritist J. G. Bühler, the prominent Slavic scholars F. Miklosic and V. Jagicć, the Romance philologist W. Meyer-Lübke, the historian of arts M. Dvořák, the geologist E. Suess, the climatologist F. Hochstetter, the physicist L. Boltzmann, and others. The university’s medical school was already very well known even in the 18th century; from 1902 to 1938, S. Freud worked at this school.

In the 1969-70 academic year the University of Vienna had five faculties: Catholic theology, Protestant theology, law and political sciences, philosophy and natural sciences, and medicine. In that same academic year it had 19,000 students and a staff of over 1,000 teachers. The university had an astronomical observatory, botanical gardens, and a library (founded in 1365) with more than 1.5 million volumes (1969).

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.