An institution of higher education named University College London (UCL) was founded in the UK’s largest metropolis and capital city in 1826. A mere three years later, in 1829, a second, similar institution named King’s College London (KCL) opened its doors. Then, a mere decade after the founding of UCL, a third institution known simply as University of London (UL) was founded in 1836 by the merger of UCL and KCL.
Both UCL and KCL continued to operate, each with its own distinctive identity, under the UL administrative umbrella, and have continued to do so until today. However, over the years many other institutions have joined what has now become a vast educational conglomerate (resembling in this respect the University of Paris). Altogether, UL at present comprises some 17 semi-autonomous universities, colleges, schools, and institutes.
Among these, perhaps the most notable are, in addition to UCL and KCL, the following:
In its origins, UL was closely associated with the progressive moral and political philosophy of Jeremy Bentham known as “utilitarianism.” In line with this pedigree, it was the first university in the UK to admit students regardless of their religious affiliation, as well as the first to admit women (in 1878). As a curious side note, when Bentham died in 1832, he bequeathed his body to a physician friend of his, who had it stuffed. In 1850, the doctor donated the mummy to UCL, where it may be viewed to this day, dressed in Bentham’s own clothes and sitting in his own chair, between 9:00 am and 6:00 pm, M–F.
Among the many notable alumni of UL, one may mention the following:
In addition, the politicians, statesmen, and heads of government and state—both from the UK and throughout the world—who have been affiliated with UL are far too numerous to tell about in any detail. We will only mention two outstanding UL-connected political personalities: the revered Indian independence leader, Mohandas K. Gandhi, and the renowned Burmese democracy activist, Aung San Suu Kyi.
All in all, a very impressive 74 Nobel Prizes are associated with UL alumni and faculty.
Who are University of London's Most influential alumni?
University of London's most influential alumni faculty include professors and professionals in the fields of Economics, Nursing, and Literature. University of London’s most academically influential people include H. G. Wells, Francis Crick, and John Stuart Mill.
English writerview profile
British molecular biologist, biophysicist, neuroscientist; co-discoverer of the structure of DNAview profile
British philosopher and political economistview profile
English modernist writer known for use of stream of consciousnessview profile
British naturalist, explorer, geographer, anthropologist and biologistview profile
Bengali poet and philosopherview profile
British science fiction writer, inventor, and futuristview profile
Scientist and inventor known for his work on the telephoneview profile
Polish anthropologist and ethnographer based in England and the USAview profile
English biologist and comparative anatomistview profile
English novelist, poet, playwright, essayist, literary critic and painterview profile
English novelist, poet and writerview profile