GELPKE, Fritz

GELPKE, Fritz Ludwig. Northeim, Hannover 29.12.1896 — 1945. German Indologist. Son of physician Joh. G. and Ottilie Doecks. Gymnasium in Northeim. Participated in WW I and never really recovered. Studies of Indology, Persian and ancient history at Göttingen (Wackernagel, Oldenberg, et al.) and Rostock. After a long interval because of a kidney illness Dr. phil. 1929 Göttingen (under Sieg). From 1932 Assistant, then from 1935 until death Custos in Museum für Völkerkunde in Berlin. Obtained Professor’s title (1940 styled so). In a letter in 1946 to Waldschmidt, Kümmel as Gelpke’s director wrote that he had been long time mentally instabile. Soon after war he took poison.

Publications: Diss. Anantabhaṭṭa’s Padārthaprakāśa. Ein Kāṇva-Kommentar zum Vājasaneyi-Prātiśākhya. 63 pp. Göttingen 1929.

Reviews: Renou’s Bibliographie védique, OLZ 36, 1933, 386-389; Waldschmidt’s Buddhistische Spätantike 7, DLZ 57, 1936, 480–484; J. J. Meyer’sTrilogie altindischer Mächte, ZfEthnol. 73, 1941, 117f. and of Paul Wirz’s Einsiedler auf Taprobane, ZfEthnol. 73, 1941, 421.

– “Epochen indischer Kunst / Epoche dell’arte indiana”, Berlin Rom Tokio. Monatsschrift für die Vertiefung der kulturellen Beziehungen der Völker des weltpolitischen Dreiecks 1/10, 1941, 21-24.

With O. Kümmel edited the Ostasiatische Zeitschrift 27 (N.F. 17), 1941 — 28, 1942/43.

Sources: Mitgliedernachrichten in ZDMG 1944; not in D.G.K. nor in Dt. biogr. Archiv 1st & 2nd series, no works in the N.U.C.; birth and parents in genealogy.net; C. Dreyer, “‘Turfan’ und die Berliner Indologie”, Framke, Lötze, Strauch (ed.), Indologie und Südasienkunde in Berlin, Geschichte und Positionsbestimmung. Geschichte zur Gegenwart und Asiens 4. Berlin 2014, 57f.; stray notes.

genealogy.net claims that he was born in Pekalongen (Java) as the son of Karl Otto G. and Anna Nahapiet, but himself he gives the above information in his diss. I thank Sven Ekelin who in December 2020 pointed this out and sent the Lebenslauf to me.

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