NÖLDEKE, Theodor

NÖLDEKE, Theodor. Harburg 2.3.1836 — Karlsruhe 25.12.1930. German Semitic Scholar, also interested in Iranian. Professor in Kiel and Strassburg. Son of Carl N., teacher, then rector of gymnasium, and Auguste Klingemann, educated in Harburg and Lingen. Studies at Göttingen, mainly under Ewald, apparently also Benfey. Ph.D. 1856 Göttingen, PD there 1861. In 1864-72 Professor at Kiel and 1872-1906 at Strassburg. After the WW I he lived in Karlsruhe and although often ill was able to work until his death in a very advanced age. Married 1864 Sophia Harries, six sons and four daughters. His granddaughter married —> E. Littmann.

Nöldeke was one of the most famous Semitic scholars of his time. He started with Hebrew, but did his main work on Arabic and Aramaic. Among his pioneering achievements can be mentioned the explanation of the relationship between various Aramaic dialects. He also worked on Ethiopian, on Turkish, on New Persian and on Pehlevi. In his work he always tried to combine linguistic and cultural studies. In addition to Semitics, at Kiel he also taught Sanskrit.

Publications: Diss. De origine et compositione Surarum qoranicarum ipsiusque Qorani. 6+102 p. Gottingae 1856.

Numerous publications on Semitic languages and litteratures, among the most important being: Geschichte des Korans. Göttingen 1860; Beiträge zur Geschichte der Poesie der alten Araber. 24+222 p. Hannover 1864; Untersuchungen zur Kritik des Alten Testament. 8+198 p. Kiel 1869; Mandäische Grammatik. 34+486 p. Halle 1875; Kurzgefasste Syrische Grammatik. 32+279 p. Lp. 1880, English ed. 1904; Beiträge zur semitischen Sprachwissenschaft. 9+139 p. Strassburg 1904; Neue Beirr. z. sem. Sprachw. 8+240 p. Str. 1910.

Geschichte der Perser und Araber zur Zeit der Sasaniden. Aus der arabischen Chronik des Tabari übersetzt. 28+503 p. Leyden 1879; Aufsätze zum persischen Geschichte. 6+158 p. Lp. 1887; Persische Studien. 39+46 p. Vienna 1888-92; Das iranische Nationalepos. 1896, 2nd ed. 9+107 p. B. – Lp. 1920.

Sources: C.H. Becker, Der Islam 20, 1932, 43-48; A.A. Bevan, JRAS 1931, 493-496; H. Bobzin, N.D.B. 19, 1998, 311f.; Fück  1955, 217-220; *I. J. Kračkovskij, Izv. AN SSSR 1931; *bibliography by E. Kuhn in Orientalische Studien. Fs. T. N. 1, 1906, xiii-li; *E. Littmann, NGGW Gesch. Mitt. 1930; *Snouck Hurgronje, ZDMG 85, 1931, 239-281; Wikipedia with photo, photo then also in Pedersen 1959, 119.

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