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October 28, 2021

First museum of Romanian university set up in Iasi 98 years ago

Devised in the spirit of continuing the efforts initiated more than a century ago by such scientists as Teohari Antonescu and Orest Tafrali, the Museum of Alexandru Ioan Cuza University is the first museum aimed at preserving the cultural assets of the Romanian academic space, Agerpres reports. The University Museum was founded in 1916 and was dedicated to the conservation of the antiquities having entered the university patrimony following the archaeological diggings in the Cucuteni Culture area and the Greek fortresses located at the Black Sea. The Museum functioned till October 26, 2010 and resumed activity on December 1, 2011, with the new organization structure involving a major transformation both in terms of quantity and quality. Many of the initiatives made in the inter-war years in order to preserve and capitalize on the academic patrimony belonged to researcher Ilie Minea, who showed particular interest in the pieces belonging to the Moldavian medieval era. After World War Two, all these materials got into the custody of the History Museum of Moldavia, an institution responsible to the Culture Ministry.
‘The interest in the preservation of all the proofs relating the activity of the university may be seen at the time of the beginnings of the institution when it was headed by Titu Maiorescu, a rector from 1863-1867. However, the initiatives for the conservation and scientific use of the cultural assets, by means of specialized publications were to materialize later, as the Iasi academic institution began to assert a specific identity. The preoccupations for saving the historical patrimony of the oldest higher education institution in Romania were stepped up under the impact of the dramatic changes the Romanian society underwent in the 20th century,’ explained Professor Bogdan Maleon, the University Museum director.

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