VILNIUS - JUNE 2008
Lithuania joined the European Union on May 1, 2004, and, before the current crisis, it had one of the fastest growing economies in the EU.
"NEW CITY CENTRE - With the Europa Tower in the middle - the tallest skyscraper in the Baltic States - and the Hotel Lieutva on the left"
"BUILDING - Frenetic construction on the right bank of the River Neris"
"PLANETARIUM - The only one in the Baltic States, it is part of the University of Vilnius Theoretical Physics and Astronomy Institute"
"ARCHITECTURE SCHOOL - Old building for new concepts"
"BRIDGE STATUES - Old style statues on the bridge crossing the Neris"
"OPERA HOUSE - It seems that 36 years after the opera was born in Florence the first one - «Il Ratto di Helena» - was produced at the Vilnius Lower Castle; we were on September 4, 1636"
"GEDIMINAS PROSPECT - The main street of Vilnius runs from the Zverynas Bridge to the Cathedral Square. Created in 1836 as St George’s Prospect, it was renamed to Mickiewicz Street by the Poles, Lenin’s Prospect, when Lithuania was one of the Republics of USSR, and Gedimino from 1989. The Parliament, the National Library and the central Bank, as well as banks, hotels, shops, restaurants and cafés may be found there"
"PORTUGUESE EMBASSY - And, of course, the Portuguese Embassy may also be found in Gedimino Avenue"
"SMALL STATE THEATRE - Established in the new building in the autumn of 2005, it has «An Open Theatre» as motto. It seems the essence is to speak a language everyone understands..."
"VILNIUS UNIVERSITY - One of the oldest in Northern Europe and the largest in Lithuania. It started when a college, established in 1570 by the Jesuits who came to Lithuania to fight the Reformation, was transformed by the 1579 King Stephen Bathory's charter into the Almae Academia et Universitas Vilnensis Societatis Jesu"
LIBRARY DOOR - The bronze door commemorates the first Lithuanian book"
"LIBRARY - The Library of the University, established in 1570, stores collections of rare publications, the first printed books and maps"
"AULA MAGNA - The main Hall of the University"
"AULA RECTORIS - The Rector's Hall"
"ASTRONOMY was a feature of Vilnius University. As most of the medieval universities, studies probably started with the trivium - logic, grammar and rhetoric - considered preparatory for the more difficult quadrivium - arithmetic, geometry, music, and astronomy!"
"VIEW - No need of a telescope..."