SCHIEFNER, Franz Anton (A. A. Šifner)

SCHIEFNER, Franz Anton (Anton Antonovič Šifner). Reval (Tallinn) 6.(18.)7.1817 — St. Petersburg 4.(16.)11.1879. Russian (German of Estonia) Indologist and Tibetan Scholar. Academician in St.Petersburg. After school in Reval started in 1836 study of law at St. Petersburg (where his uncle was Professor of Roman Law), but also attended Graefe’s lectures on comparative philology. In 1840 he went to Berlin to study under Savigny, but soon turned entirely to philology under Boeckh, Bopp, Lachmann and Tredelenburg. From 1843 schoolteacher of Latin, later also of Greek in St.Petersburg, continued his studies of Greek. Now he became also interested in Tibetan. From 1848 one of the librarians of Imperial Academy, from 1852 Adjunkt (in Tibetan), from 1853 eo. Academician. In 1860-73 also Professor of Classical Lan­guages at Roman Catholic theological seminary. In 1863 visited England, in 1870 Germany and Austria. Councillor of State.

AS was mainly a Tibetologist, but also interested in Indology, Iranian, Mongolian, Caucasian and even Fenno-Ugrian. He was much interested in myhtology and in narrative literature and a pioneer of Bon studies.

Publications: “Beiträge zur Kritik des Bhartṛhari”, Bull. Acad. Imp. 4:18, 1847, 273-284; “Einige Bemerkungen zum Poley’schen … Devīmāhātmya”, ibid. 4:6-8, 1847, 125-128; “Über Indras Donnerkeil”, ibid. 5:2, 1848, 17-21; “Über die nepalischen, assamischen und ceylonischen Münzen des Asiatischen Museums”, ibid. 12:9-10, 1855, 150-154 (all also in Mél. as.); “Über ein indisches Krähen-Orakel”, ibid. 1, 1860, 438-448 & Mél. as. 4, 1863, 1-14; smaller articles.

with A. Weber: “Über ein indisches Würfel-Orakel”, MbBeAW 1859, 158-180, again with transl. in Weber, Ind. Streifen 1, 1868, 274-307.

– “Eine tibetische Lebensbeschreibung Çâkjamuni’s”, Mém. Acad. Imp. 6:3, 1851, 231-333; “Tibetische Studien”, Bull. Ac. Imp. 8, 1851 & 8, 1865, also Mél. as. 1, 1852, 324-394 & 5, 1868, 178-194; “Das buddhistische Sûtra der zweiundvierzig Sätze”, Bull. Acad. Imp. 9:5, 1852 & Mél. as. 1, 1852, 435-452.

Ergänzungen und Berichtigungen zu Schmidt’s Ausgabe des Dsanglun. 2+94 p. St.P. 1852; Carminis indici “Vimalapraçnottararatnamâlâ” versio tibetica. 26 p. St.P. 1858; Buddhistische Triglotte, d. h. sanskrit-tibetisch-mongolische Wörter­verzeichniss. 4+37 p. St.P. 1859.

ed. Tā-ra-nā-thai rgya-gar-chos-’byur-bnugs. Târanâthae de doctrinae Buddhicae in India propagatione narration. 10+220 p. St.P. 1868; tr. Târanâtha’s Geschichte des Buddhismus in Indien. 12+346 p. St.P. 1869.

Bharatae responsa tibetice cum versione latina. 4+46 p. St.P. 1875.

Mahâkâtjâjana und König Tschanda-Pradjota. Ein Cyklus buddhistischer Erzählungen. 8+67 p. Mém. Ac. Imp. 7:12:7. St.P. 1875.

– “Indische Erzählungen”, Bull. Acad. Imp. 1876-78, also in Mél. as. 7, 1876, 673-760, 773-795; 8, 1881, 89-188, 281-333, 449-534.

Über das Bonpo-Sûtra: “Das weisse Nâga-Hunderttausend”. 4+86 p. Mém. Ac. Imp. 7:28:1. St.P. 1880.

on Fenno-Ugrian: the first German translation of the Kalevala (1859), articles on Finnish mythology in Bull. Acad. Imp.; edited M. A. Castrén, Nordische Reisen und Forschungen. 1-12. StP. 1853-62.

on Turcology: “Über die Heldensagen des minussinschen Tataren”, Bull. Acad. Imp. 15:23-24, 1858, 353-390, also in Mél. as. 3; Ausführlicher Bericht über Baron P. v. Uslar’s Kasikumükische Studien. 8+136 p. Mém. Acad. Imp. 7:10:12, 1866; also articles on Tungusic.

on Caucasology: “Versuch über die Thusch-Sprache”, Mém. Acad. Imp. 6:9, 1859, 1-160; Versuch über das Awarische. 2+54 p. Mém. Acad. Imp. 7:5:8, 1862; Ausführlicher Bericht über des Generals Baron Peter von Uslar Achasische Studien. 62 p. Mém. Acad. Imp. 7:6:12, 1863; Versuch über die Sprache der Uden. 110 p. Mém. Acad. Imp. 7:6:8, 1863; Tschetschenische Studien. 7+ 72 p. Mém. Acad. Imp. 7:7:5, 1864; Ausführlicher Bericht über Baron P. v. Uslar’s Hürkanische Studien. 4+200 p. Mém. Acad. Imp. 7:17:8, 1871; Ausführlicher Bericht über Baron P. v. Uslar’s awarische Studien. 8+180 p. Mém. Acad. Imp. 7:17:6, 1872; Ausführlicher Bericht über Baron P. v. Uslar’s Kürinische Studien. 4+256 p. Mém. Acad. Imp. 7:20:2, 1873; Awarische Texte. 50+113 p. Mém. Acad. Imp. 7:19:6, 1873; smaller articles.

on Iranian: “Ossetische Sprüchwörter”, Bull. Acad. Imp. 5, 1863, 435-453, 492-495 (also in Mél. russes 4); “Ossetische texte”, Bull. Acad. Imp. 6, 1863, 446-474 (& Mél. as. 5); Osetinskie teksty. 2+104 p. Zap. Ak. 14:4. St.P. 1868; “Ossetische sagen und Märchen”, Bull. Acad. Imp. 12, 1868, 180-212 (& Mél. as. 5).

Sources: Buckland, Dictionary; *R. Rost, IA 9, 1880, 111-11?; *B. Le Calloch, “F.A.S.: maître des études finno-ougriennes, caucasiennes et tibétaines”, JSFOu 84, 1992, 31-52; Walravens 2008, 166-168; *Wiedemann, Bull. Acad. Imp. 26, 1880, 30-44 (with bibliography); JRAS 1880, Proc. ix-xiii, also in Max Müller, Biogr. Essays. 2nd ed. = Chps 2, 1895, 454-457; bibliography in Livotov & Portulak 1966; Wikipedia with photo, same in Rau 26.

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