The Sorbonne is an edifice of the Latin Quarter, in Paris, France, which has been the historical house of the former University of Paris. The name is commonly used to refer to this historic University of Paris or one of its successor institutions (see below), but this is a recent usage, and "Sorbonne" has actually been used with different meanings over the centuries. For information on the historic University of Paris and the present universities, which are its successor institutions or the Collège de Sorbonne
The Collège de SorbonneThe name is derived from the Collège de Sorbonne, founded in 1257 by Robert de Sorbon as one of the first significant colleges of the medieval University of Paris. The university as such predates the college by about a century, and minor colleges had been founded already in the late 12th century. The Collège de Sorbonne was suppressed during the French revolution, reopened by Napoleon in 1808 and finally closed in 1882. This was only one of the many colleges of the University of Paris that existed until the French revolution.
In 1970, the University of Paris was divided into thirteen different universities. These universities still stand under the management of a common rectorate – the Rectorate of Paris - with offices in the Sorbonne. The building also houses the Rectorate of Paris, the École Nationale des Chartes, the École pratique des hautes études, the Cours de Civilisation Française de la Sorbonne and the Library of the Sorbonne.Today the word Sorbonne no longer refers to the University of Paris but to the historical building located in the Latin Quarter, the 5th arrondissement of Paris.