Paris Travel Planner   La Sorbonne, Paris, France
The Sorbonne, once synonymous with the University of Paris in the Latin Quarter on the Left Bank, is among the world's oldest institutions of higher learning.




La Sorbonne is a building in the Latin Quarter on the Left Bank of the River Seine in Paris (map; Métro: Cluny-La Sorbonne). It holds the offices of the Rectorate of Paris, the common head administration of the 13 universities into which the former University of Paris was divided in 1970.

Le Collège de la Sorbonne, founded in 1257, was one of the numerous colleges of the medieval University of Paris.

During les événements de Mai 1968, university students in Paris protested treatment of some students in Nanterre, the Sorbonne was occupied by police, and some 20,000 students and faculty marched on the Sorbonne to "liberate" it.

These actions led to a general strike of workers throughout France, with some 11 million workers—almost a quarter of the entire population of France—joining the strike. The government fell, and President Charles de Gaulle was almost toppled from leadership. France was at the very edge of revolution, but order was eventually restored, elections were held, and the crisis passed.

It can truly be said that the Sorbonne has been at the heart of intellectual, political, and university life in Paris for nearly a thousand years.

The building stands at the heart of the Left Bank university district of classroom, laboratory and administrative buildings.

Left Bank of the Seine

The River Seine

Le Panthéon


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La Sorbonne, Paris, France

La Sorbonne, surrounded by
university buildings in Paris.

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