BARR, Kaj. Copenhagen 26.6.1896 — 4.1.1970. Danish Iranian Scholar. Professor in Copenhagen. Son of a mechanic, matriculated in Copenhagen 1917. Began studies at Technical High School, but soon turned to classical, Arabic and Iranian philology (under Christensen) at Copenhagen University: mag. artium 1925 in Classics. Also further studies under Andreas at Göttingen. In 1923-33 Assistant in the Commission for Corpus Lexicographorum Graecorum, from 1947 its member. In 1935-45 lektor i klassisk filologi at Copenhagen University, in 1945 succeeded Christensen as Professor eo. i iransk filologi. Retired in 1966 (and was succeeded by Asmussen). 1945 member of the Videnskabernes Selskab. Hon. dr. phil. Copenhagen 1969. Married 1927.
KB was a well known specialist of Ancient and Middle Iranian, also Kurdish. Since the 1930s he worked on an Bundahišn edition, but in the 1960s finally dropped the project. In addition to Greek and Iranian he knew Armenian, Chinese and Romani and was famous for his wide learning. He was also interested in the history of learning and founded the Videnskabshistorisk Selskab.
Publications: “Bruchstücke einer Pehlevi-Übersetzung der Psalmen von F. C. Andreas, aus dem Nachlass hrsg.”, SBeAW 1933, 91-152 (text, transl., glossary); Remarks on the Pahlavi Ligatures. 1936; “Avest. drəgu-, driγu-”, Fs. J. Pedersen 1953, 21-40.
– coeditor of the Codices Avestici et Pahlavici Universitatis Hafniensis. 7–12, 1937–44.
– transl. into Danish: Avesta. Verdensreligionernes Hovedværker. 1954.
– Latinsk grammatik. 1957; Islam. Verdens religioner. 1966.
Sources: Kraks Blå Bog 1969; www.denstoredanske.dk; very briefly in Danish and Swedish Wikipedia.
J.P. Asmussen, Enc. Iranica 3, 1988, 821f.; Kraks Blå Bog 1969; www.denstoredanske.dk; photo in AO 30, 1966; very briefly in Danish and Swedish Wikipedia.