HAMM, Frank-Richard

HAMM, Frank-Richard. Königsberg 8.10.1920 — Bonn 11.11.1973. German Indologist and Tibetan Scholar. Professor in Bonn. Son of Lieutenant Richard and Hedwig Hamm, moved with his parents to Hamburg in 1922 and matriculated there 1939. In 1940-41 studies of Indology, philosophy and ethnology at Hamburg (under Schubring, Zieseniss, E. Fraenkel and J. C. Tavadia). In 1941 he was taken in the army, returned in 1945 from American captivity and continued his studies, now concentrating on Indology, Tibetology and IE linguistics. Ph.D. 1948 Hamburg. In 1948-52 taught as a Tutor of Indology at Hamburg and planned a habilitation about Jaina versions of the Rāmāyaṇa, but gave up when a similar work appeared in India. Turned now his attention to Tibetan. In 1952-54 further study at Raghu Vira’s International Academy of Indian Culture in Nagpur, in 1954-58 the first Assistant at Hamburg Seminar of Indology. Befriended with Alsdorf, he was much influenced by him. In 1957 habilitation at Hamburg, PD there 1958-64. In 1964 first holder of the new chair of Indology at F.U.Berlin, but already in 1965 he became Hacker’s successor as Professor and Director of Indological Seminar at Bonn. During his last years illness limited his ability to work.

FRH was a student of Schubring and thus familiar with Jainism. In Tibetan his master was H. Hoffmann. His main interest, however, was Pāli Buddhism. He was slow to publish his work, and illness and death interrupted many plans like editions of Milaraspa’s songs and of the Visuddhimagga. During his few years at Bonn three students completed their M.A., and three dissertations were nearly completed (Čičak-Chand, Eimer, and ?Hahn), further his students included S. Dietz.

Publications: diss. Gīyatthavihāra. Das sechste Kapitel des Mahānisīhasutta im Text mit Anmerkungen und Glossar. MS. 1948, publ. in p. 5-59 of his and Schubring’s Studien zum Mahānisīha, Kapitel 6-8. ANISt 6. Hamburg 1951.

habil.diss. Specimen einer kritischen Ausgabe des Rab tu ’byun ba’i gži. Tib. Text, dt. Übers. und Anm. 1957 (Pravrajyāvastu).

– “Jaina-Versionen der Sodāsa-Sage”, Schubring Festschrift 1951, 66-73; “Das Tor nach Tibet”, Westermanns Monatshefte 1956; “Über die Bedeutung der Wahr­nehmungslehre im frühen Buddhismus”, Nobel Festschrift 1959, 92-100; “Tib. dbus und yud dbus”, IIJ 1960, 150-153; “Zu einigen neuen Ausgaben des Pāli-Tipiṭaka”, ZDMG 112, 1962, 353-378, rev. tr. in German Scholars on India 1973, 123-135; “Buddhismus und Jinismus”, Saeculum 15, 1964, 41-56; “Die ‘Verkörperung’ des Bodhisattva im Pāli-Jātaka”, ZDMG 118, 1968, 357-368; “Chāndogyopaniṣad VI. Ein erneuter Versuch”, WZKS 12/13, 1968/69, 149-159; “Prof. Dr. Walter Schubring 1881–1969”, Jain Journal 1970, 1-15; “Die tib. Überlieferung zweier Udānavarga-Verse”, Zas. St. 4, 1970, 17-27; “Studien zur Überlieferung des Mi la’i mgur ’bum”, ibid. 29-79; reviews.

Rab tu ’byuṅ ba’i gži: die tibetische Übersetzung des Pravyajyāvastu im Vinaya des Mūlasarvāstivādins. Nach Vorarbeiten von F.-R. Hamm und weiteren Materialien hrsg. von H. Eimer. 1-2. As. Forsch. 82. 1983.

Sources: *bibliography by H. Eimer, IT 21, 1990, 13-18; *H. Eimer (ed.), Frank-Richard Hamm Memorial Volume: October 8, 1990. 215 p. Indica et Tibetica 21. Bonn 1990; M. Hahn, ZDMG 125, 1975, 6-10 with photo and bibliography; *Cl. Vogel, ZAS 18, 1985, 292-294; briefly Wikipedia.

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