University of Saint Francis Xavier
|Universidad Mayor Real y Pontificia de San Francisco Xavier de Chuquisaca|
|Established||March 27, 1624|
The Royal and Pontificial Major University of Saint Francis Xavier of Chuquisaca (Spanish: Universidad Mayor, Real y Pontificia de San Francisco Xavier de Chuquisaca or USFX) is a public university in Sucre, Bolivia. It is one of the oldest universities of the new world, ranking as the second oldest university in the Americas behind Peru's National University of San Marcos. On many historical texts it is also referred as the University of Charcas (Spanish: Universidad de Charcas).
Founded in 1624 by order of the Spanish King Philip IV, and with the support of Pope Innocent XII, the university was intended to provide an education in Law and Theology to the families and descendants of the wealthy gentry of South America.
At the turn of the 19th century, Chuquisaca and its university came to constitute an center of revolutionary zeal in Bolivia. The university intellectually sustained the well-cultivated Francophile elite whose ideals led to the Bolivian War of Independence and ultimately to the independence of all the Spanish colonies. Once Republic was proclaimed by Simón Bolívar, the university became the main university of the new country.
Until the first decades of the 20th century, its law faculty remained famous all across South America.
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