JØRGENSEN, Hans Jensen. Oksbøl Mark, Als Island (then Prussian Schleswig-Holstein, now Denmark) 4.3.1886 — Copenhagen 6.2.1954. Danish Indologist (Newari Scholar). Born as Prussian citizen in a Danish peasant family, parents Jens J. and Helene Christiansen, educated at Oksbøl school and Haderslev gymnasium. From 1906 studies of classical philology and comparative linguistics at Kiel (under Lüders), Marburg and Munich. Ph.D. 1911 Kiel (under Sieg). From 1912 Wissenschaftliche Hilfsarbeiter in Museum für Völker­kunde in Berlin, here became acquainted with Newari manuscripts. In 1914-15 in the army, in 1915 sent to Russian front, but soon discharged on behalf of a nervous illness, of which he never completely recovered. In the end of 1915 he returned to the museum, where he worked under Grünwedel, mainly on Indonesian collections. In spring 1919 resigned and returned to Als, now on the verge of being restored to Denmark (1920), but fell again ill and had to spend several years at his home farm, now run by his brother. Supported by D. Andersen he obtained in 1927 a grant for his Newari studies from Carlsberg Foundation and this grant was then renewed until the end of his life. He lived part of each year in Als, the other part working in Kongelige Bibliotek in Copenhagen, and twice visited England in search of Newari material. In the early 1930s again some years ill. Unmarried.

Jørgensen was the great pioneer of Newari studies, the author of the first printed text edition (1931) as well as of the first dictionary (1928/36) and grammar (1941) of written Newari. After 1941 worked no longer on Newari, but wrote the grammar of his home dialect.

Publications: Diss. Das Mantra-Brahmaṇa. 2. Prapāṭhaka. Sanskrit und deutsch, mit Sāyanas Kommentar. 12+84 p. Darmstadt 1911.

– “Ein Beitrag zur Kenntniss des Nevārī”, ZDMG 75, 1921, 213-236; “Versuch eines Wörterbuchs der Nevārī-Sprache”, AO 6, 1928, 26-92; “Linguistic Remarks on the verb in Newārī”, AO 14, 1936, 280-285.

Edited & transl.: Vicitrakarṇikāvadānoddhṛta. A Collection of Buddhist Legends. Nēvārī text. 344 p. Or. Transl. Fund N. S. 31. L. 1931.

Dictionary of the Classical Newārī. 178 p. Danske Vid. Selsk. Hist.-filol. Medd. 23:1. Copenhagen 1936.

Edited & transl.: Batīsaputrikākathā. The Tales of thirtytwo Statuettes – A Newārī Recension of the Siṁhāsanadvātriṁśatikā. 372 p. Danske Vid. Selsk. Hist.-filol. Medd. 24:2. Copenhagen 1939.

A Grammar of the Classical Newarī. 108 p. Danske Vid. Selsk. Hist.-filol. Medd. 37:3. Copenhagen 1941.

Alsisk Formlære. 59 p. Udvalg for Folkemaals Publik A9. 1950.

Sources: E. Pauly, Køb. Univ. 8, 1992, 557 & IT 10, 1982, 185-192 & Dansk Biografisk Leksikon 3rd ed. (online version 2011 in https://biografiskleksikon.lex.dk/Hans_J%C3%B8rgensen); briefly Wikipedia.

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