University of Verduria

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The University of Verduria (Šriftanáe i Verdúria) is the premier academic institution of Verduria city and, arguably, of all Almea.

It was founded in 2312 by the Caďinorian emperor Sörtoro; it is the only one of the six Verdurian universities to have an imperial rather than a royal charter. It is not the oldest still-functioning university; that would be the Šivines in Čeiy. Verdurians like to claim however that theirs is the oldest continuously functioning university— the Šivines was closed down during the Gelyet invasion.

The university was originally located in the western Išira district, where its faculties of natural philosophy (kestora) and medicine still reside; it was given a sprawling campus on Arin Island in the 2500s by Elticai Sáluer. The Biško neighborhood to the south is the student quarter of the city, and attracts artists as well; professors tend to live in the more upscale Nezi neighborhood to the north.

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Many of the monuments of Almean scholarship originated at the University:

  • The Eleďe dynasty spelling reform (promulgated 3272)
  • Definitive grammars of Verdurian, Caďinor, and Cuêzi, as well as extensive treatments of many other Ereláean languages; the University's grammar and dictionary constitute the norm for the Verdurian language
  • A definitive history of Caďinas, the Plesčura Caďinasei Šriftanáei, published at the rate of one volume every five years
  • The reconstruction of Proto-Eastern under the leadership of Osör Ružeon and Estanesa Sarileya
  • Several top journals of philology: Aluatas er Loži (Grammar and Word), Onemi Sfahei (Studies in Verdurian), Řon (Language)

Under its imperial charter the University is self-governing, though of course it is subject to Verdurian law. Since 3380 it has had its own member of the Esčambra, selected by the faculty. The university itself is run by the faculty as a whole, which elects a perelädec or president as its head. (A corollary is that its campus is not part of any kešana or borough, and not subject to the city administration.)

The map shows the location of the faculties on the main campus. Some notes:

  • The Language faculty studies Verdurian language and literature, while the Nations faculty studies other modern languages, plus geography.
  • The Caďinor faculty also studies Cuêzi.
  • The Students’ Corporation (Cumbutát smericië) is something like a guild for the students; it is responsible for student discipline and also provides housing.
  • The avisar is an academic high school run by the University.
  • The cletana is one of the 21 Caďinorian pagan seminaries; it actually predates the university and is responsible to the patriarch (perař) rather than to the perelädec. Students are required to take classes in religious instruction, though since the Eleďe dynasty they are allowed to choose between Caďinorian paganism, Eleďát, and Irreanism.
  • The Ivrosäte (library) contains a quarter of a million volumes, the largest known library on Almea. (It held this distinction even before the invention of printing, though the number then was a few thousand.) Individual faculties have their own libraries, making the total close to 350,000.

On Verdurian maps, the 0° longitude line passes through the university’s observatory. (Other seagoing nations choose their own capitals, of course.)

The University has more than 3,500 students actively studying; at any one time as many as twice that number are registered-- it is common to take many years to complete a degree, often intermittently as money becomes available. Besides the Students' Corporation there are houses (mostly in the Biško) which take in students, many endowed by wealthy alumni and provided with chaplains to ensure a minimum level of virtue. Students may also find housing on their own.

Notable scholars