It all began in 1431: A short history of the University of Poitiers

The University of Poitiers, founded in 1431 by Pope Eugene IV, later confirmed by French King Charles VII’s letters patent, was originally composed of five Colleges: theology, canon law, civil law, medicine and arts.

As early as the 16th century, the University of Poitiers was the centrepiece of the city’s cultural life. At that time, it was considered the second most important University in France after Paris; 4,000 students attended the University, some of whom were to become famous: Joachim du Bellay, Guez de Balzac, François Rabelais, René Descartes, Francis Bacon, Scévole de Sainte Marthe etc. After the French Revolution, which abolished provincial universities, the University of Poitiers was refounded and strengthened by the addition of new colleges (literature and science) during the 19th century.

The University of Poitiers currently serves more than 26,000 students and employs more than 3,000 people: Teachers and Academics / Librarians, engineers, technicians, workmen, administrative, service and health workers / Temporary teaching and research staff / Language assistants  / Contract PhD students / and Contract teachers.


Université de Poitiers - 15, rue de l'Hôtel Dieu - TSA 71117 - 86073 POITIERS Cedex 9 - France - Tél : (33) (0)5 49 45 30 00 - Fax : (33) (0)5 49 45 30 50 - webmaster@univ-poitiers.fr