The archivist in the reading room believes that I should know more about Lithuania than just KGB files.  In order to contribution to my education, she arranged for a friend who works at Vilnius University’s visitor services to give me a tour this week.  She waited until we were having a beautiful sunny day to send me over to the university for an afternoon tour.

Vilnius University was founded in 1579.  It was originally a Jesuit university and was taken over by the Grand Duchy of Lithuania in 1773.  The university was closed by Tsar Nicholas I in 1832 after a Polish-Lithuanian uprising against Russian imperial rule.  The university re-opened in 1919 when Vilnius was part of Poland.  Since 1940, it has been the highest educational institution in Lithuania.

The original campus is located in Old Town.  It consists of 13 buildings and 13 courtyards.  The university buildings include Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque and Classicist styles.  Here are a few photos from my tour.

The Observatory Courtyard

The Observatory Courtyard

The Grand Courtyard

The Grand Courtyard

Entrance to Art Gallery

Entrance to Art Gallery

A faded fresco on one of the buildings

A faded fresco on one of the buildings