At the request of Jaime I the Conqueror, Innocent IV in 1246, authorized by a Bull the establishment of estudios generales in Valencia. Although ion virtue of this Bull some university courses were followed in Valencia, the university itself was not founded until 1411. Its foundation was due to the zeal of St. Vincent Ferrer and to the donation of a building by Mosen Pedro Vilaragut. Only very meagre accounts have been preserved of the practical workings of the university. From the time of its foundation the courses included Latin, Greek, Hebrew, Arabic, philosophy, mathematics, and physics, theology, canon law, and medicine. The closing years of the seventeenth, and the whole of the eighteenth century, witnessed the most prosperous era of the university, Greek, Latin, mathematics, and medicine being specially cultivated. Among the names of illustrious students that of Tosca, Torricelli's friend, noted physicist and author of important mathematical works, stands out prominently. Escolano says that it was the leading university in mathematics, the humanities, philosophy, and medicine. Large anatomical drawings were made by the students. Valencia was the first university of Spain to found a course for the study of herbs. Many of the Valencian graduates of medicine became famous. Pedro Ximeno discovered the third small bone of the ear. He was professor at Alcalá and had for a pupil the celebrated Vallés. Luis Collado, professor of botany, made some valuable discoveries and carried on exhaustive studies of the plants of the Levant; Vicente Alonzo Lorente wrote works on botany; and the famous botanist Cavanilles was also a student of this university. In the seventeenth century the university divided into two factions, the Thomists and the anti-Thomists. The discussions were heated and aroused partisan feelings throughout the entire Kingdom of Valencia. The university possessed a library of 27,000 volumes which was destroyed by the soldiers under the command of General Suchet. Among the most noted professors of the university was D. Francisco Peréz Bayer, a man of wide culture and great influence in the reign of Charles III. Around the university several colleges for poor students sprang up: the first was founded by St. Thomas of Villanova in 1561 and then followed those founded by Doña Angela Alonsar, and Mosen Pedro Martín. The most famous, called Corpus Christi, was founded by Blessed Juan de Ribera; Philip II founded that of San Jorge; and Melchor de Villena founded the last in 1643.
The Catholic Encyclopedia is the most comprehensive resource on Catholic teaching, history, and information ever gathered in all of human history. This easy-to-search online version was originally printed between 1907 and 1912 in fifteen hard copy volumes.
Designed to present its readers with the full body of Catholic teaching, the Encyclopedia contains not only precise statements of what the Church has defined, but also an impartial record of different views of acknowledged authority on all disputed questions, national, political or factional. In the determination of the truth the most recent and acknowledged scientific methods are employed, and the results of the latest research in theology, philosophy, history, apologetics, archaeology, and other sciences are given careful consideration.
No one who is interested in human history, past and present, can ignore the Catholic Church, either as an institution which has been the central figure in the civilized world for nearly two thousand years, decisively affecting its destinies, religious, literary, scientific, social and political, or as an existing power whose influence and activity extend to every part of the globe. In the past century the Church has grown both extensively and intensively among English-speaking peoples. Their living interests demand that they should have the means of informing themselves about this vast institution, which, whether they are Catholics or not, affects their fortunes and their destiny.
Copyright © Catholic Encyclopedia. Robert Appleton Company New York, NY. Volume 1: 1907; Volume 2: 1907; Volume 3: 1908; Volume 4: 1908; Volume 5: 1909; Volume 6: 1909; Volume 7: 1910; Volume 8: 1910; Volume 9: 1910; Volume 10: 1911; Volume 11: - 1911; Volume 12: - 1911; Volume 13: - 1912; Volume 14: 1912; Volume 15: 1912
Catholic Online Catholic Encyclopedia Digital version Compiled and Copyright © Catholic Online