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The Halle Academy, 1652–1937



    THE Kaiserlich Deutsche Akademie der Naturforscher at Halle has recently celebrated the two hundred and fiftieth anniversary of the granting of its charter. In 1652, soon after the end of the Thirty Years' War, there was founded by four physicians, in the Reichsstadt of Schweinfurth, a scientific society under the name of Academia Naturae Curiosorum. The principal founder and first president, Johann Lorenz Bausch, had studied in Italy and become acquainted with the local academies of that day, and especially with the Lyncæorum Academia, now Accademia Reale dei Lincei ; he was also influenced by the writings of Bacon of Verulam. In 1677 the Emperor Leopold I recognized the society as the Academy of the Holy Roman Empire, and ten years later the same prince bestowed upon it considerable privileges and the title of Sacri Romani Imperil Academia Gmsareo-Leopoldina Naturce Curiosorum. Arms were granted, with the motto: "Nunquam otiosus" ; the president and the editor of the ephemerides received golden chains of office ; they and their successors became counts palatine of the Holy Roman Empire ; as such they could legitimize bastards, confirm the liberation of slaves and perform other legal functions. They could, moreover, confer the titles of doctor, licentiate, master and bachelor, in the faculties of medicine, philosophy and laws ; they could even appoint poets laureate. The doctorates so conferred were to secure the same privileges as those given by the universities. The publications of the Academy were exempted from censorship and protected as to copyright.

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