DELBRÜCK, Berthold Gustav Gottlieb

DELBRÜCK, Berthold Gustav Gottlieb. Putbus, Rügen 26.7.1842 — Jena 3.1.1922. German Indologist and IE Scholar. Professor in Jena. Son of a judge, Ernst Friedrich Felix D., in a well-known family of lawyers and theologians, educated in Stralsund and Halle (Franck. Stiftungen). Early death of father forced him to think economically and therefore take the study of school subjects, classical philology, history, geography and French, at Halle, but he also added IE philology under Pott. Then at Berlin under Bopp, Weber and Steinthal. Ph.D. 1863 Halle. Employed as a tutor in Livonia, then 1864-66 teacher at Gymnasium of Marienwerder (East Prussia). Staying with his father-in-law in St.Petersburg he became friend with Böhtlingk, Hehn and Schiefner. Habilitation at Halle in 1867, taught Sanskrit, comparative grammar and Greek syntax compared with the IE. In he 1870 succeeded Leskien as ao. Professor at Jena, from 1873 ord. Professor of Sanskrit und vergleichende Sprachforschung at Jena, remained there until retirement in 1912, rejecting the invitations from Berlin, Strassburg and Heidelberg. In 1904 lecture tour to the U.S.A. Dr.juris h.c. Chicago 1904 and Jena 1908, Ph.D.h.c. Athens 1912. Member of the A.W. of Leipzig (1885), Göttingen (1912), and Bavaria (1890). Member of National-Liberal party and an admirer of Bismarck. In 1865 married Constance Kämptz (1845-1934; the daughter of a St.Petersburg Professor of physics), two sons (—> Richard D.) and two daughters.

Delbrück was the founder of IE comparative and historical syntax. He started on lines of Bopp, Schleicher and Curtius, but soon joined the junggrammarians. He took Sanskrit as the starting-point. In Indology he followed Böhtlingk and Roth, and based his studies on the language of the Rigveda and Brāhmaṇas. His special interest was syntax. Among his rather few students were P. v. Bradke, Gaedicke, Ed. Hermann, Knauer, and Reuter.

Publications: Diss. De infinitivo Graeco. 36 p. Halis Saxonum 1862 (severely criticized by Beckh).

Habil.diss. De usu dativi in carminibus Rigvedae. 28 p. Halle 1867, and rev. version in German, “Über den idg., speziell den Vedischen Dativ”, KZ 18, 1869, 81-106.

Ablativ, localis Instrumentalis im Altindischen, Lateinischen, Griechischen und Deutschen. 4+80 p. B. 1867; Die Grundlagen der Griechischen Syntax. Syntaktische Forschungen 4. Halle 1879.

with E. Windisch: Der Gebrauch des Conjunctivs und Optativs im Sanskrit und Griechischen. 12+267 p. Syntaktische Forschungen 1. Halle 1871.

Das altindische Verbum aus den Hymnen des Rgveda dargestellt. 8+248 p. Halle 1874; Altindische Tempuslehre. 6+136 p. Syntaktische Forsch. 2. Halle 1876.

Vedische Chrestomathie mit Anmerkungen und Glossar. 6+128 p. Halle 1874.

Altindische Wortfolge aus dem Çatapathabrâhmana dargestellt. 8+80 p. Syntaktische Forsch. 3. Halle 1878; Die Grundlagen der griechischen Syntax. Syntaktische Forsch. 4. Halle 155 p. Halle 1879.

Einleitung in das Studium der indogermanischen Sprachen. 8+142 p. Lp. 1880, 6th ed. 1919, English (by E. Channing, 1882), Italian (by P. Merlo, 1881), and Russian translations; Vergleichende Syntax der indogermanischen Sprachen, in Brugmann & D., Grundriss. 3-5. Strassburg 1893-1900.

Altindische Syntax. 656 p. Syntaktische Forschungen 5. Halle 1888.

– “Die indogermanischen Verwandtschaftnamen. Ein Beitrag zur vergleichenden Alterthumskunde”, ASGW 25, 1890, 379-606.

Grundfragen der Sprachforschung. 6+180 p. Strassburg 1901.

Articles in KZ, etc.

Sources: *E. Eggers, Lex. Gramm. 1996, 229f.; Ed. Hermann, Idg. Jb. 8, 1920/21, 259-266 (republ. in Sebeok 1966:1, 489-496); *E. Hermann, B. D. Ein Gelehrtenleben. Jena 1923; J. Mehlig, WZUHalle 7:4, 1958, 893f.; Stache-Weiske 2017, 260-263, 516; Windisch 414-421; W. Wüst, N.D.B. 3, 1957; *Idg. Forsch. 31, 1912/13, 507-513; German Wikipedia with photo; photo in Rau 46; another photo in Pedersen 1959, 309.

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