Programme of the Ceremonial Conferment of Doctoral Degrees

The conferment festivities last for two days and include the Sword Sharpening Ceremony, Ceremonial Conferment, academic procession, Service, Banquet and Ball. 

Thursday 17 September 2020

Rehearsal for the Conferment Ceremony Thursday 17 September 2020 at 2 pm

At the rehearsal, the different stages of the Conferment Ceremony will be explained thoroughly. All Doctors, Honorary Doctors and Conferrers have to attend the rehearsal. Instructions will be delivered to the attendees beforehand.

Sword Sharpening Ceremony at the lobby of the University’s Main Building, on Thursday 17 September at 7 pm

The swords are sharpened with grindstones which the heralds wet with sparkling wine. The grindstone is rotated by the avec of the doctor or honorary doctor. The swords are sharpened in the conferment order, first all the honorary doctors.

After the welcome speech there is a dinner and before the sword sharpening there is a dance performance and a speech to the sword. At the end of the evening there is dance.


Friday 18 September 2020

Conferment Ceremony at noon

The Conferment Ceremony begins with an academic procession which includes the chancellors, rectors, professorate, conferrer, honorary doctors and the doctors.

The programme of the Conferment Ceremony includes a speech by the conferrer of the faculties of philosophy. Afterwards, all the honorary doctors and doctors will receive their hats, swords and diplomas. The conferment is carried out one faculty at time. There will also be music in the Conferment Ceremony.

The academic procession leaves the hall in a reversed order, i.e. first the conferrers, then the honorary doctors and doctors in conferring order.

Academic procession to the Cathedral 

After a short break, the academic procession will reassemble and head for the Service in the Cathedral. Everyone is welcome to come and watch the procession, for example, to the Cathedral Square.

Service at the Cathedral or secular service at 3.30 pm

Seats will be reserved for the procession in the front and in the middle of the Cathedral. Relatives and the audience may seat themselves freely in any available seat. The swords cannot be taken into the church and are left to the lobby for the duration of the Service.

A secular service will also be organised at the same time near the Cathedral. Family and relatives are welcome to join the secular service as well. The place of the service will be confirmed later.

Laying of the Wreaths

After the Service, the representatives of the conferred doctors lay wreaths of conifer sprigs on the grave of Porthan and on the soldiers´ graves.

Ceremonial Conferment Banquet at Turku Castle at 7 pm

A festive dinner will be served in a banqueting hall at Turku Castle. During the banquet, will be held a series of speeches. 

After the banquet the evening will continue at the Turku Castle with music and dancing and end at daybreak with a speech to the sun.