Presidency College, Chennai

(Redirected from Presidency College, Madras)

Presidency College is an art, commerce, and science college in the city of Chennai in Tamil Nadu, India. On 16 October 1840, this school was established as the Madras Preparatory School before being repurposed as a high school, and then a graduate college. The Presidency College is one of the oldest government arts colleges in India. It is one of two Presidency Colleges established by the British in India, the other being the Presidency College, Kolkata.[1]

Presidency College
Logo of Presidency College, Chennai
Coat of Arms
Latin: Praesidentia Universitatis, Chennai
Former name
Madras Preparatory School, Madras High School
MottoUnde Orta Recurrit (Latin)
Motto in English
This inspired returns
TypeGovernment College
Established1840; 183 years ago (1840)
PrincipalDr. R. Raman
Academic staff
Wallajah Road, Chepauk, Chennai, India
AffiliationsUniversity of Madras
Main building of Presidency College, Chennai.


Historical photograph of the college (from the Illustrated London News, 1870)

Sir Thomas Munro asked for a Committee of Public Instruction to form in 1826. In 1836, the committee's duties changed to the "Committee of Native Education". The plans drawn up by the committee did not commend themselves to the Governor of Madras, Lord Elphinstone, who proposed nineteen resolutions that passed unanimously.[2]

Elphinstone chose E. B. Powell, a University of Cambridge Wrangler in mathematics, to be the first principal, and Powell accepted the post. He arrived in Mumbai (Bombay) on September 20, 1840, but did not reach Chennai (Madras) until 24 November. Meanwhile, the committee had invited Cooper from Hoogly College, Kolkata, to temporarily carry out the principal duties at a salary of Rs 400 per month. Cooper accepted the invitation and came to Chennai (Madras). He and his staff opened Presidency School, a preparatory school, in a rented building in Egmore known as Edinburgh Home, on 16 October 1840. Cooper remained in the primary school for only a few months. Soon after Powell's arrival, and before the high school department opened on 12 April 1841, he returned to Kolkata. The preparatory school shifted to Popham's Broadway in 1841.[2]

The schools grew into Presidency College. When the University of Madras was founded in 1857, Presidency College became affiliated with it.[2]

In 1870, the college moved to its present location in Kamaraj Salai, opposite Marina Beach.[3]

Close up view of the main entrance to the Presidency College
The clock tower atop the building
Senior Mathematics Intermediate Group, Break-up social, 3 March 1941


Presidency College is ranked AIR 7th by NIRF 2021 for college ranking. The 2022 NIRF ranking of the college is 3rd in the college category.[4]

Notable alumniEdit

Notable facultyEdit

Victoria hostel

In popular cultureEdit

Presidency College (mainly its campus) was the place where many films were shot, including:[19]


  1. ^ "Home". Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  2. ^ a b c "The History of Presidency College". Archived from the original on 13 November 2009. Retrieved 29 September 2017.
  3. ^ "The Hindu : Tamil Nadu / Chennai News : Presidency College to have bioinformatics centre". Archived from the original on 7 March 2007. Retrieved 15 January 2022.
  4. ^ "MoE, National Institute Ranking Framework (NIRF)".
  5. ^ Martin, Douglas (November 2014). "Alagappa Alagappan, 88, Dies; Founded Hindu Temples Across U.S." The New York Times. Retrieved 8 July 2018.
  6. ^ "Diwan K Seshadri Iyer". geni_family_tree. Retrieved 3 May 2021.
  7. ^ "The Nobel Prize in Physics 1983". Retrieved 3 May 2021.
  8. ^ "The Nobel Prize in Physics 1930". Retrieved 3 May 2021.
  9. ^ "Chakravarti Rajagopalachari – The Last and the Only Indian to Become Governor General of India | BeAnInspirer". Be An Inspirer. 10 December 2017. Retrieved 3 May 2021.
  10. ^ "Contact Us - IndiaInfoline". Retrieved 3 May 2021.
  11. ^ Praveen, S. r. (28 February 2016). "Setting an old record straight". The Hindu. Retrieved 25 September 2017.
  12. ^ Thadathil, George (2002). "The Making of a Tradition: The Vision of Nataraja Guru" (PDF). Divyadaan. 13 (2): 159–190. Archived from the original (PDF) on 23 March 2014.
  13. ^ "IFSA mourns Rukmini". Deccan Herald. 31 December 2009. Retrieved 23 January 2022.
  14. ^ Subramanian, Archana (2 September 2017). "On Teachers' Day, remembering an educator". The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  15. ^ "presidency". Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  16. ^ ലേഖകന്‍, സ്വന്തം. "ആറ്റിക്കുറുക്കിയ കവിതകളുടെ ആറ്റൂര്‍". Mathrubhumi. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  17. ^ Kolappan, B. (18 February 2015). "Perumal Murugan joins duty at Presidency College". The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  18. ^ Subramanian, T. S. (4 July 2013). "Abode of legacy". The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  19. ^ "Reel Life Locations In Chennai Where Some Of The Best Films Were Made | LBB". LBB, Chennai. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  20. ^ "From Vikram Vedha To Vijay's Theri: Seven Places You Need To Make A 'Madras Film'". Film Companion. 17 March 2020. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  21. ^ "▓▒╚• Nanban •╝▒▓ Glorious 100 days....Great century of our 'Mass'claster! - Page 80". Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  22. ^ Chhabra, Aseem. "'It took a decade to make The Man Who Knew Infinity'". Rediff. Retrieved 23 May 2021.

External linksEdit