Millenial The Faculty of Medicine

Enter this thousand-year-old place. From the entrance, the large room will surprise you with its monumental staircase.

A unique place

A bit of History

Adjacent to St. Peter’s Cathedral, the university is located in a former 14th century monastery that was devoted to law and theology. Lord Guilhem VII had already signed an edict authorizing the teaching of medicine in Montpellier, but it was not until 1220 that the “Faculty of Medicine” was officially recognized.

It is the oldest medical school in the West that is still functioning. The walls of the hall are decorated with portraits of the most famous teachers in formal dress, among them a certain François Rabelais.

The Faculty houses numerous treasures, including a library of 900 manuscript volumes, 300 incunabula, 100,000 volumes printed before 1800, and all the theses produced by the faculties of Montpellier and Paris since the 17th century.

Did you know ?

Did you know that Montpellier was one of the birthplace of Medicine?

The Faculty of Medicine of Montpellier, created in the 12th century, is the oldest in the western world still in operation! It contains the Conservatory of Anatomy, an astonishing place presenting 5000 anatomical pieces and waxes.

Montpellier also has many other sites of Heritage related to medicine: the Jardin des Plantes, the Mo.Co. Panacée, the Pharmacy museum

The reputation of medicine in Montpellier being considerable, famous personalities have marked its history as students such as Rabelais, Nostradamus, Lapeyronie, Guy de Chauliac

In 2020, the Faculty of Medicine celebrated its 800th anniversary!

Other places related to the history of Medicine

The Pharmacy Museum, founded in 1972 in the Faculty of Pharmacy, gathers numerous documents on ancient and contemporary pharmacy, and the collections of the druggist of Pharmacy, preserving thousands of medicinal plants.

The historical complex of the Pharmacy and the Chapel of Mercy contains the last apothecary still in place, with a rare collection of Montpellier earthenware pharmacy pots.

The Saint-Côme Amphitheater, built in the middle of the 18th Century on the model of the Amphitheater of St Côme in Paris, was used for anatomy demonstrations. Today, the CCI is installed there.

The Atger Museum, located in the heart of the historic buildings of the Faculty of Medicine, contains a collection of drawings, including some on human characters. Atger wanted to donate his collection to the faculty of medicine, so that students could, through drawing, assimilate human anatomy and sharpen their sense of observation.

The Fabre Museum is located on the site of the former Salle de l’Evêque and the Jesuit College, and moreover a street very close to the museum still bears the name “Rue de la Salle l’Evêque“.

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Focus on... the Conservatory of Anatomy

The Conservatory of Anatomy seems to hold a particular fascination. Nearly one hundred metres long and adorned with columns, the room contains numerous display cases that offer an impressive inventory of medical progress over the past 200 years. Jars, skulls and castings of a remarkable realism surround a resin écorché model that stands in the centre of the room.

The second floor of the conservatory houses the imposing collections of the Delmas-Orfila-Rouvière museum, consisting of écorchés and wax anatomical models from the last two centuries.

The Faculty and the Conservatory of Anatomy can only be visited exclusively with the Tourist Office.

INFORMATION: The Conservatory of Anatomy is currently closed for work, a selection from the collections will be offered to you in the Delma-Orfila-Rouvière room.