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A brief history of the General high school Gian Rinaldo Carli Koper

The gymnasium or general high school has its name after its most distinguished student, the representative of Enlightment in Koper, Gian Rinaldo Carli. It was founded in 1612. It was first a seminary, then a noble institution – Collegio dei Nobili. The first years were particularly marked by two historical events, the war of the Uskoks in 1617 and the plague, raging on this territory during those years. The Collegio dei Nobili had then to cease its function.

Picture 1: At the time the gymnasium was founded, Koper was an island surrounded by walls and connected to the mainland only by a wooden bridge.

In 1675 Venice assured the institution they would restart their activity, which was realized the next year, in 1676. In 1683 the Noble institution was given new premises, where it still operates.

Picture 2: The façade of Gymnasium Gian Rinaldo Carli nowadays.

The educational work was first entrusted to the vicars of Somask and later on, around 1700, to the vicars Scolops. The downfall of the Republic of Venice and the implementation of the Austrian rule did not bring major changes, which took place in 1809 with the Illyrian Provinces. The French changed the Noble institution into a lyceum and hired, along with the monks, secular teachers.

With the comeback of the Austrian in 1813, the school got back its original name, Collegio, and a year later, in accordance with the Austrian education system, it was renamed in gymnasium – Imperial Regio Ginnasio Giustopolitano. The teaching languages were Latin and Italian, all the texts had to have the consent of the authorities, which lead to the conversion in a German gymnasium in the later years. During the years 1824-1825, there were no lectures in Italian, which lead to a decline of inscriptions and a low number of students. Consequently, in the year 1841/1842 the school and the whole education staff were transferred to Trieste. The inhabitants of Koper were irritated by this loss and particularly blamed the education staff who could not decisively resist the Germanization. With the improvement of the circumstances in 1848, the reputable institution was transferred back to Koper, the lectures were given in Italian, with a Chair in German. In 1852, it came under the jurisdiction of the State and became a High school (gymnasium). The next years were a flourishing period with 300 students attending its eight classes.

Picture 3: The school museum collects old didactic tools and instruments.

With the Ministerial Decree of 4 May 1868, Italian became the language of instruction in all subjects, German and Slovenian were compulsory only for students of German and Slavic nationalities. At the end of the First World War under the Italian rule, the school was renamed the Royal Lyceum-Gymnasium of Carlo Combi.

Picture 4: A memorial plaque in the atrium of the school reminds of the period following WW1.

In the seventies of the past century, the Yugoslav school reform, with targeted education, changed the grammar school into the secondary school of social sciences with the Italian language of instruction.

After the Slovenian independence and the new school reform on June 24, 1992, which re-introduced gymnasiums into the school system, the school was named after the Koper enlightenant and polyglot – Gymnasium Gian Rinaldo Carli Koper.

Picture 5: Gian Rinaldo Carli – the school has its name after the Koper enlightenant.

In addition to ensuring a high quality level of teaching, the School encourages students to participate in activities of interest and in various projects, exchanges and collaborations with various institutions and schools.



At the end of the school year the school publishes the magazine created by the students and contains themes, reviews, photos and games reflecting the activities carried out during the school year. The Carlito is edited by class III.


Every year we dedicate two days to a single theme developing it with an informal, interactive and “visible learning” approach. The school is filled with smells, tastes, sounds and images, creating a pleasant and at the same time educational environment.


Let’s discover together interesting films by famous directors on intriguing themes that make us think and discuss and show how the tenth muse can also be a didactic medium.


Science, languages, art workshops.

Sources for images:
Picture 1: http://www.rtvslo.si/kultura/knjige/slikovite-podobe-vedutistov-ki-so-se-potepali-po-nasih-dezelah/323628
Picture 2: http://www.primorske.si/Primorska/Istra/Vpeti-v-okolje-in-predani-socloveku.aspx
Picture 4: http://editfiume.com/lavoce/cultura/9045-combi-personaggio-da-studiare-e-capire
Picture 5: http://www.primorske.si/Priloge/7–Val/Najstarejsa-laicna-sola-v-Kopru.aspx