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Bredsdorff, Elias Lunn (1912–2002), Danish scholar, was born on 15 January 1912 at Roskilde folk high school, Denmark, the youngest of six sons of Thomas Vilhelm Birkedal Bredsdorff (1868–1922) and his wife, Margrethe, née Lunn (1871–1958). His father was the headmaster of the school, a further education college run on liberal Christian principles, and his mother a teacher. Originally taught at home, from the age of twelve he attended ...

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Elias Lunn Bredsdorff (1912–2002) by Bertyl Gaye, c. 1962–1963 The Master and Fellows of Peterhouse, Cambridge

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Fagius, Paul (c. 1504–1549), protestant reformer and Hebraist, was born in Rheinzabern in the Rhine Palatinate, son of Peter Büchelin, schoolmaster and city clerk in Rheinzabern, and Margarethe Hirn of Heidelberg. At the age of eleven he went to the Neckarschule in Heidelberg...

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Fiedler, Hermann Georg (1862–1945), German scholar, was born on 28 April 1862 at Zittau, Saxony, the second of three children of August Fiedler (1837–1912) and Minna Grossmann (1842–1894). His father was Musikdirektor at Zittau and his elder brother (August) Max Fiedler (1859–1939) became one of the most renowned conductors of his time. His sister ...

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Francis Watt

revised by Janette Ryan

Hüttner, Johann Christian (1766–1847), translator, was born at Guben in Lusatia, Germany. He studied philology at Leipzig University and was awarded his doctorate on the basis of his work De mythis Platonis, which was published in Leipzig in 1788. He travelled to England...

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Jacobi, Johann Christian (1670?–1750), bookseller and translator, was born in Germany. He studied at the University of Halle, probably in the 1690s, where he became closely associated with August Hermann Francke, the leading figure of the pietist reform movement within contemporary German Lutheranism, and his circle. Although his motivation in coming to ...

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Krapf, (Johann) Ludwig (1810–1881), linguist of Swahili and first protestant missionary in east Africa, was born on 11 January 1810 at Derendingen near Tübingen, in the kingdom of Württemberg, the youngest of four children of Johann Jakob Krapf (1773–1846), peasant farmer, and his wife, ...

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Eiríkur Magnússon (1833–1913) by Hay, 1867 National Museum of Iceland

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Magnússon, Eiríkur (1833–1913), librarian and Icelandic scholar, was born in the parsonage of Berufjörður in east Iceland on 1 February 1833, the second son and third child of the Revd Magnús Bergsson (1799–1892), then curate of Berufjörður, and his wife, Vilborg Eiríksdóttir (1804–1862)...

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Meidel, Christopher (b. c. 1659, d. in or before 1715), Quaker minister and translator, was born probably in Skien, Norway, one of three or more children of Gert Meidel (c.1606–1696), a shipowner of Langesund, and his wife, Elen, whose surname was probably ...

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Friedrich Max Müller (1823–1900) by George Frederic Watts, 1894–5 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Müller, Friedrich Max (1823–1900), Sanskritist and philologist, was born on 6 December 1823 in Dessau, the capital of the small duchy of Anhalt-Dessau in Germany, the only son of the popular lyric poet Willhelm Müller (1794–1827), and his wife, Adelheid (1799?–1883), elder daughter of ...

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Ravis [formerly Raue], Christian [Christianus Ravius] (1613–1677), oriental and biblical scholar, was born on 25 January 1613 at Berlin, Brandenburg, the son of Johann Raue, deacon at the Nikolaus-Kirche, and his wife, Margarete Guericke. After attending the Berlin Gymnasium, in 1630 he entered ...

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G. Le G. Norgate

revised by John D. Haigh

Render, Wilhelm (fl. 1790–1809), grammarian and translator, was a native of Germany, probably brought up in or near Heppenheim, south of Darmstadt. Nothing is known of his parents. He attended Giessen University, and was ordained to the Lutheran ministry. He was also a member of the freemasons. For a time he acted as 'travelling guardian to the son of a distinguished personage'. He then travelled in ...

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Sike, Henry (bap. 1669, d. 1712), orientalist, the son of Heinrich Sieke and his wife, Gerti, was born in Bremen where he was baptized on 3 January 1669 at the church of St Stephen. In April 1687 he entered the local Gymnasium Illustre...

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Stephens, George (1813–1895), philologist and runologist, son of John Stephens (1772–1841) of Ongar, a Methodist minister, and his wife, Rebecca Eliza Rayner (d. 1852), was born at Liverpool on 13 December 1813. His brother was Joseph Rayner Stephens (1805–1879). George was educated at private schools and at ...

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F. Y. Powell

revised by Carolyne Larrington

Vigfússon, Gúðbrandur (1827–1889), scholar of Icelandic literature, was born on 13 March 1827 in Galtadalur, Dalasýsla, western Iceland. He was the son of Vigfús Gíslason, of an old and respected Icelandic family, and Halldóra Gísladóttir. He was brought up by his foster-mother and great-aunt ...

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Wilkins, David (1685–1745), Coptic scholar, was born of Prussian parentage in Memel, Lithuania, on 11 June 1685. His original name was Wilke, which he Latinized as Wilkius and Anglicized into Wilkins. Little is known about his education in Germany (probably in Berlin) or how he acquired his knowledge of ancient and Semitic languages, which was extensive rather than profound. He referred to the antiquarian ...