BERGMANN, Benjamin Fürchtegott Balthasar von. Arrasch, Livonia (now Āraiši in Latvia) 17(28).11.1772 — Blussen b. Wenden (now Blusu near Cēsis, Latvia) 16(28).8.1856. German (Livonian) Priest and Traveller, a Pioneer of Lamaist Studies. Son of Gustav B. (1787 von B.; 1749–1814, priest and scholar) and Beata Meder. Educated at Domschule and Lyceum in Riga, studied Lutheran theology and philology from 1791 at Leipzig, 1793 at Jena. Tutor in Riga 1795-98 and in Moscow 1798-1802. In 1802-03 in South Russia among the Kalmucks. He was interested in ethnography and spent 15 months with the nomads. In 1804-06 asst. minister (adjunct) in Rujen (Rūjiena), Livonia, 1806-14 minister in Erlaa, and 1814-46 in Rujen. 1816 Ph.D. Dorpat. Married 1804 Eleonore Wilhelmine Polchow (d. 1846), six children. His Nomadische Streifereien are one of the earliest detailed and rather reliable sources on Kalmucks and their Lamaism.

Publications: Nomadische Streifereien unter den Kalmüken in den Jahren 1802 und 1803. 1-4. 352+352+302+356 p. Riga 1804-05. Wrote also on Russian history.

Sources: Napiersky, Livl. … Prediger 2, 1850; Deutsch-baltisches biogr. Lexikon. 1970; Recke & Napiersky, Livl. Schriftsteller-Lexicon 1, 1827, 129-132 (also briefly in 2 & 4); Baltisches biogr. Lexikon at; *Latvian Vikipēdija contains a portrait.