1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Dübner, Johann Friedrich

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DÜBNER, JOHANN FRIEDRICH (1802-1867), German classical scholar (naturalized a Frenchman), was born in Hör selgau, near Gotha, on the 20th of December 1802. After studying at the university of Göttingen he returned to Gotha, where from 1827-1832 he held a post (inspector coenobii) in connexion with the gymnasium. During this period he made his name known by editions of Justin and Persius (after Casaubon). In 1832 he was invited by the brothers Didot to Paris, to co-operate in a new edition of H. Etienne’s Greek Thesaurus. He also contributed largely to the Bibliotheca Graeca published by the same firm, a series of Greek classics with Latin translation, critical notes and valuable indexes. One of Dübner’s most important works was an edition of Caesar undertaken by command of Napoleon III., which obtained him the cross of the Legion of Honour. His editions are considered to be models of literary and philological criticism, and did much to raise the standard of classical scholarship in France. He violently attacked Burnouf’s method of teaching Greek, but without result. Dübner may have gone too far in his zeal for reform, and his opinions may have been too harshly expressed, but time has shown him to be right. The old text-books have been discarded, and a great improvement in classical teaching has taken place in recent years. Dübner died at Montreuil-sous-Bois, near Paris, on the 13th of December 1867.

See F. Godefroy, Notice sur J. F. Dübner (1867); Sainte-Beuve, Discours à la mémoire de Dübner (1868); article in Allgemeine deutsche Biographic.