Founded by Emperor Charles IV on 7 April 1348, Karolinum is the oldest university north of the Alps and still serving its original purpose. Unfortunately, only little was preserved of the original building (a beautiful bay window, for example), but the courtyard was rebuilt in Gothic style after 1948. Thousands of German students left the university in 1420 when the reformer preacher Jan Hus became a rector.
The most striking detail from the original Gothic structure is this oriel window, across from the Estates Theatre, with its many gargoyles and intricately carved fantastic creatures.
Today the Charles University has facilities all over Prague. The Karolinum houses only some medical faculty offices, the University Club and occasional academic ceremonies (ceremonies take place here in the Aula Magna). The gothic bow window is often used as the University symbol. There is a gallery on the ground floor.
Address: Zelezna 9, Prague 1, 110 00; Close to station Mustek (Lines A, B) Old Town