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In Flanders fields
In Flanders fields the poppies blow Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place: and in the sky
The larks still bravely singing fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the dead: Short days ago,
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved: and now we lie
In Flanders fields!
Take up our quarrel with the foe
To you, from failing hands, we throw
The torch: be yours to hold it high
If ye break faith with us who die,
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields
Composed at the battlefront on May 3, 1915
during the second battle of Ypres, Belgium
The author of this poem, Canadian officer John McCrae, by these lines gave vent to his grief by the loss of his companion at war and closest friend Alexis Helmer.
Since then this poem has become known worldwide and has been much loved.
The poppy has become the emblem and symbol in memory of all those who have fallen fighting during the First World War (1914-1918).
The Seat of Wisdom
Flanders is the modern Dutch-speaking region of Belgium, Walloon being its French-speaking part.
The commercial cities of Flanders Ghent, Burgs, Ypres, already from the Medieval Ages, were among the richest and most densely populated cities in Europe.
The Catholic University of Leuven, the first university of Belgium, is one of the best in the world, and it is dedicated to Mary, Mother of Jesus and Seat of Wisdom.
Since its foundation in 1425, it did not cease to contribute especially in the development of Catholic theology.
Every year on 2nd February the Holy Virgin is particularly honoured as patroness of the Institute through various activities. One of them is the awards of honorary doctorates to international personalities who have positively contributed to the benefit of the world society.
Among those who have been honoured by this diploma are: the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew (1996), the Romanian writer Eugene Ionesco ((1977), the Archbishop of San Salvador Oscar Romero (1980), the director of the I.M.F. Christine Lagarde (2012) and the U.N. Secretary General Ban-Ki-Moon (2015).
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