Osaka University (大阪大学, Ōsaka daigaku), or Handai (阪大, Handai), is a major national university located in Osaka, Japan. It is the sixth oldest university in Japan as the Osaka Prefectural Medical College, and formerly one of the Imperial Universities of Japan. Numerous prominent scientists have worked at Osaka University such as the Nobel Laureate in Physics Hideki Yukawa.
Academic traditions of the university reach back to Kaitokudō (懐徳堂), an Edo-period school for local citizens founded in 1724, and Tekijuku (適塾), a school of Rangaku for samurai founded by Ogata Kōan in 1838. The spirit of the university's humanity sciences is believed to be intimately rooted in Kaitokudo, whereas that of the natural and applied sciences, including medicine, is widely believed to be based on Tekijuku.
Osaka University traces its origin back to 1869 when Osaka Prefectural Medical School was founded in downtown Osaka. The school was later transformed into the Osaka Prefectural Medical College with university status by the University Ordinance (Imperial Ordinance No. 388 of 1918) in 1919. The college merged with the newly-founded College of Science to form Osaka Imperial University（大阪帝國大学） in 1931.
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