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A Short History of Liceo

“CIVIC” LICEO-GYMNASIUM  from 1824 to 2004:
 180 years!

ROYAL LICEO-GYMNASIUM “ANDREA D’ORIA” from 1884 to 2004 :120 years!

LICEO-GYMNASIUM “ANDREA D’ORIA” got its primary location in various luxurious mansions and, after some roamings, acquired the one that, situated in the very historical centre (Arx Jani) and in the very ancient centre (Castrum) of Genoa, should become its own traditional placing at the top of St. Augustin wide road , looking on to Piazza Sarzano and close to the confluence of Vegetti lane and St. Croce lane

1805 By July 4th 1805 Decree (Messidor 15th, XIII year) Napoleon Ist introduces sweeping reforms of University and of “Establishments of State Education”; by the same Decree were instituted the “Civic Schools” which previously belonged to private education (controlled and conducted by religious such Piarists/”Calasanzio”, Jesuits/”Arecco”, Barnabites/”Vittorino”, Somasks/”Nervi”, Augustinian friars/”San Nicola”, et al.). In such a foundation “our Liceo’s first nucleus” is to be sought after (...on the active list and in operation for 199 years, that is to say almost two centuries!).

1824 Even if it is difficult to get a photo of the “Civic Gymnasium” dating back to 1824, the one to be considered the real year of our “Liceo” ‘s beginning, since its own birth, as the histories report, led by “men of great honesty and of didactic zeal”.
Which were the subjects that went to make up the initial stage of the “Liceo-Gymnasium” specializing in classical studies? RHETORIC (afterwards divided into Eloquence and Poetics), THE HUMANITIES, GRAMMAR (superior and inferior); later on positive PHILOSOPHY (Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry).

1824-2004: Liceo D’ORIA is 180 years old!
In the very year GENOA is EUROPEAN CAPITAL OF CULTURE, the CIVIC” LICEO-GYMNASIUM celebrates 180 years of steady and high-class presence in town.
1828 In 1828, the study of SHORTHAND was unsuccessfully proposed by Genoa’s commercial, political and journalistic forces.
1838 and ten years later in 1838, was successfully poposed the study of THE FRENCH LANGUA GE .
1849 Thanks to marquis Camillo Pallavicino, deputy mayor, in 1849, the year in which the French were in Genoa, was founded a Gymnasial Course including three years of GRAMMAR and two years of RHETORIC; Town Council could sanction definitely the “Civic Gymnasium” by appointing a Headmaster as a Studies’ Director and a team of valuable Teachers. On poet Giovanni Torti’s proposal, prof. MICHELE SARTORIO, “a vastly learned man and a passionate patriot”, was appointed Headmaster. (Inside Liceo a memorial tablet is dedicated to him, just like to others).
1859 In 1859 Casati Bill sets up the Licei; but the “Civic Gymnasium” has got so notable a value is that, though reorganized, its own preservation is deemed necessary; rather, Town Council makes a model school of it “choosing as teachers the ones who excelled in brains and looking for them even in the lecturehalls”. In the new school regulations, decided and passed by Town Hall, “high moral standards and discipline were required, but - “maxima debetur Discipulis reverentia” - corporal punishments were absolutely forbiddenl ” (in proof and in confirmation of what is being changed into a real and appreciated tradition of pedagogic and didactic abilities).
1861 “Civic Gymnasium’s long and honourable tradition” not only persuaded the Authorities of necessity to be preserved, but through June 1861 Ministerial Decree del Giugno 1861 it was “officially recognizied as a Royal School”.
1879-1880 In the s.y. 1879-’80 Liceo-Gymnasium, being then “Municipal”, was recognized, “as equal to the State Schools thanks to the value of studies and exams”, and it was entitled to “ANDREA D’ORIA”: Headmaster prof. Michele Sartorio, who died on January 5th, 1880, saw his dream being fulfilled. Prof. LUIGI TOMMASO BELGRANO, who was the vice-Headmaster, succeeded him to the Headmastership.
1884 On October 1st, 1884, by Royal Decree, both the title of “ROYAL LICEO-GYMNASIUM” and the name of the glorious admiral “ANDREA D’ORIA” were ratified; after long roamings, it moved to S. Augustin wide road (“offical” venue for over half a century: exactly up to 1937).
1884-2004: Liceo D’ORIA is 120 years old! (October 1st,1884 by Royal Decree - October 1st, 2004).
In the very year in which GENOA is EUROPEAN CAPITAL OF CULTURE, LICEO-GYMNASIUM, passed from “Town Hall” to “State” being the name of “ANDREA D’ORIA” confirmed (October 1st,1884 Royal Decree), celebrates 120 years of steady and high-class presence in town.
Prof. LEOPOLDO MARENCO, “a learned man with charming speech ” , was the first Headmaster ...
1887 ... “moved to Bologna” in 1887 owing to School Leaving Examination of that year when “a real killer” took place: out of 104 candidates only eight passed” so those who failed were “in the terrible proportion of 92%” in confirmation of “a great number of blockheads encroaching on the benches at school” (The sentences put in inverted commas can be read - sic! - on Secolo XIX of the same year).
1888 To act for the “moved” Headmaster prof. Marenco was called, since 1888, prof. MICHELE FERRUA, who taught Natural Science; he, having ten children, showed he was “a good father for his own puplils” as well.
1891 Successor to Ferrua, in 1891, was prof. GASPARE BUFFA, “a learned man of gentle nature” and very fond of poetry,
1893 to him in 1893 succeeded prof. GASPARE COLOMBO, who, being a bureaucrat, “carried out a beneficial job by rearranging the Archives and the practical headship of Liceo”.
1895 Prof. SILVIO CECCHI, a Pilosophy teacher, was called, in 1895,,to succeed him: like his predecessors he continued his office for a period of two years as well. After a succession of “Headmasters” who held public office for a short period, one year or a couple of years , the Ministry
1897 appointed, in 1897, prof. LUIGI GIO. BATTA PANDIANI, who held his office for twenty-two years (up to 1919 ) and, besides setting up three libraries (School’s, Teachers’, Students’) and obtaining a lot of educational materials,
1903, he secured, in 1903, the introduction of electrical energy.
1915-’18 An so many, really a large number, were Liceo D’ORIA’s students who, like heroes and like martyrs, took part in
1939-’45 world wars of 1915-’18 and of 1939-’45 . We enclose in our memory all of them, from the first to the last and forgetting not a single of them .
1937 But the events of LICEO-GYMNASIUM ANDREA D’ORIA, situated on Sarzano’s (Arx Jani ) hilltop, went on until, in 1937, took place the transfer to a building “brand- new and in strict accordance with the rules”, in Victory Square. From then on, over sixty-five years, Students and Teachers have continued attending the Liceo, one among the most famous in Italy.Trusting to the humanistic and classical culture, the Teachers have educated and brought up whole generations of Students who have made their way in life and in society, often being promoted to the highest ranks. Headmasters of great renown have run it and have workedto make its name famous.
Here follows the roll of yesterday’s Headmasters:
prof. MICHELE SARTORIO (1849-1880)
prof. LUIGI TOMMASO BELGRANO (1880-1884)
Prof. LEOPOLDO MARENCO (1884-1887)
prof. MICHELE FERRUA (1888-1891)
prof. GASPARE BUFFA (1891-1893)
prof. GASPARE COLOMBO  (1893-1895)
prof. SILVIO CECCHI (1895-1897)
prof. LUIGI GIO.BATTA PANDIANI (1897-1919)
prof. GIOVANNI ZICCARDI (1937-1958)
prof. ITALO MALCO (1958-1977)
prof. LORENZO GIOVANNACCI (1977-1982)
prof. SALVATORE DI MEGLIO (1982-1983)
prof. LUIGI CAMPAILLA (1983-1986)
prof. CARMELO TORRENTE (1986-1991)
prof. Salvatore Di Meglio (1991-2008)
prof. Egidio Ravotto (2008-

2003-2004: Liceo D’ORIA is 120 years old !
Nowadays, in the school year 2003-2004, prof. SALVATORE DI MEGLIO is the Headmaster of “LICEO-GYMNASIUM ANDREA D’ORIA” (1); he, besides the good functioning of the school, - in his own time surely “not wasted”, even if too little - is involved in “varied philosophy and pleasant literature”. He was Liceo D’Oria’s Headmaster on annual contract in the school year 1982-’83 and later on he returned as a permanent Headmaster (nowadays called “School Executive” ), being continually in office in the same Liceo since the school year 1991-’92. Under his “Headmastership” Liceo has become, just like in far1937, “brand new”, in fact have been brought to a close the hugeous works that have provided a general restructuring, works of complete renewal and application of safety regulations and overcoming of architectural features that deny access to the handicapped (L. 626).
Ex-Students The Association of Liceo D’ORIA’s Ex-Students, led by Chairman dr. MARIO SOSSI (being dr. MARIO CANEVARA, honorary Chairman), assisted by prof. MARIA PAOLA COMOLLI VIAZZI, active vice-Chairman and press agent, keeps alive the tie of yesterday’s Liceo with all that today’s Liceo still represents. Yesterday’s Students continue ideally strengthening the close bond that links them to“theirr” Liceo, by organizing meetings with experts in different fields and lectures about subjects of varied culture and varied humanities. Special emphasis deserves the yearly ceremony with the donation of books written by Ex-Students to Liceo D’ORIA’s library.
(1) Unfortunately, owing to the constantly growing number of pupils hurrying to enroll at the prestigious and renowned Liceo, the amount of the classrooms has no longer been adequate for some years; and, in order to increase the capacity and to put up all the pupils who are entitled to attend the school to which they have addressed their application, there have been converted into classrooms: * parents’ reception; * the room once used (and fitted out) as a sickroom; * the room just assigned to those pupils who, not making use of Religious Education, want to stay and study at school, as the regulations in force prescribe; * the attendant’s flat; and - Nay, it is like that! - even...* “the great halll”.
TOWN COUNCIL’s? PROVINCE’s? MINISTRY’s competent Authorities are hard of hearing (nor lend an ear, nor pay due attention) to the cry the PARENT-TEACHER-STUDENT ASSOCIATION, PARENTS, STUDENTS, TEACHERS and the HEADMASTER have been uttering for years. As they say, Authorities are hedging and they don’t know how to look for “real solutions”, they don’t want to put forward “solutions” (not temporary palliatives or, worse, convenient arrangements), being suitable and fit to not temporary settlement of the hoary problem. And yet the definitive solution would be possible and there is, yes indeed... And “in loco” (that is to say: “ inside” the very School: where there’s a will, there’s a way).

Liceo-Gymnasium “ANDREA D’ORIA


Laboratorio di Fisica



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Ultimo aggiornamento sezione Archivio : 01/01/2011