Rome: The first institute for the human sciences
The young Society received a bequest from the Jewish art collector Henriette Hertz in the form of the Palazzo Zuccari in Rome, together with a significant amount of endowment funding. Henriette Hertz had built up an impressive library in Rome. The Institute of Art History was to be named “Bibliotheca Hertziana” in her honour and dedicated primarily to studying the Renaissance. Even before its “soft opening", the Institute hosted the International Congress of Art History in October 1912. Following Italy’s entry into the war, research at the Bibliotheca Hertziana came to a halt in 1915 and only resumed in 1920. A Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for German History, which was also originally to be based in Rome, was planned as another institute dedicated to the human sciences. The Institute began its work on 1 October 1917 on the premises of the Royal Library in Berlin. Its first Director was the historian Paul Fridolin Kehr. In 1924, a resolution was passed to found the first institute for legal studies: the Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law. In 1926, the Institute for Comparative and International Private Law, also began its work in the Berlin Palace.