Charles University was founded on the 7th of April 1348 by a charter of Charles IV, King of the Romans and of Bohemia. In this way one of the three great ideas of Christian medieval times universitas was fulfilled. Thanks to Charles foresight and his good relations with Pope Clement VI, the newly founded university had four faculties theological, legal, medical and arts a pattern which corresponded to medieval concepts of a complete university. The university was based on the Sorbonne model and it is the oldest university in Central Europe.
Over the centuries, as with all other universities, CU has experienced periods of great success, and times of trouble and decline. Our Alma Mater, founded in the hope that it would serve the nation forever, is now a leading educational and scholarly institution that remains true to its ancient traditions. Its seventeen faculties educate over 50,000 students; teaching and research is carried out by hundreds of specialists in the various disciplines. The prime purpose of Charles University is the diffusion of learning and protection of acquired knowledge, the cultivation of free thought, independent academic research and the arts, and the encouragement of the free creative spirit of humanity.