HAŞDEU, Bogdan Petriceicu

HAŞDEU, Bogdan Petriceicu (born Tadeu Hâjdeu). Cristineştii, Hotin, Bessarabia (now Kerstentsi in Ukraina) 26.2.1838 — Cîmpína 25.8.1907. Romanian Historian, Linguist and Author interested in Sanskrit. Son of the luminary Alexandru Hâjdeu, who had read Bopp’s comparative grammar and encouraged his son to linguistic studies. Studies at Chişinau and Harkiv (degree in Law), according to Bănăţeanu also Sanskrit at Lwów. Fought in Crimean war and came to Romania as a deserter of Imperial (Russian) army. After a while as judge in Cahul became teacher and librarian in Iaşi in 1858, in 1863 moved to Bucharest and concentrated on literary work. From 1900 Professor at Bucureşti University, mainly taught philosophy. According to Bănăţeanu he lectured comparative linguistics before 1874, when the course was cancelled, and became its Professor in 1878 (in Bucureşti?), acc. to Stati from 1874 Professor of comparative philology at Bucureşti, from 1878 also member of Romanian Academy. In 1873 and in 1886 he is styled Professor at Bucureşti University.

In Romania BPH soon developed a many-sided literary activity. He edited journals, compiled the first Romanian encyclopedia practically alone, wrote poetry, novels and dramas as well as anti-dynastic pamphlets. As a politician he strongly supported unification of all “Romanian provinces”. As a scholar he is considered the founder of modern linguistics in Romania. In his research he also used Sanskrit, but never published anything on it. Further, he collected and translated a number of Slavic documents pertinent to Romanian history. After the death of his daughter Julia (1869–1888) he also started occultism and spiritualism. Among his students was L. Saineanu.

Publications: Principie de filologia comparativa ario-europee. 1-3. Bucureşti 1875-81 (originally articles in Columna lui Traian); articles on etymology etc. in Columna lui Traian.

Etymologicum Magnum Romaniae. 1-3. Bucureşti 1886-98; Cuvente den Batrini. 1-3. 1878-81; etc.

edited: Arhiva Istorica a României. 1-4. 1864ff.

Sources: Banateanu, Indo-Asian Cult. 7:3, 1959, 276-278 & Visva-Bh. Quart. 27, 1961-62, 245f.; S. N. Ionesco, Who Was Who in 20th century Romania. N.Y. 1994; S. Stati, Lex. gramm. 1996, 395f.; *Dictionarul literaturii Române. Bucur. 1979, 424-430, with three photos and numerous further references to Romanian sources; Wikipedia with photo (more details in *Romanian version).

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