1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Beck, Christian Daniel
BECK, CHRISTIAN DANIEL (1757–1832). German philologist, historian, theologian and antiquarian, one of the most learned men of his time, was born at Leipzig on the 22nd of January 1757. He studied at Leipzig University, where he was appointed (1785) professor of Greek and Latin literature. This post he resigned in 1819 in order to take up the professorship of history, but resumed it in 1825. He also had the management of the university library, was director of the institute for the deaf and dumb, and filled many educational and municipal offices. In 1784 he founded a philological society, which grew into a philological seminary, superintended by him until his death. In 1808 he was made a Hofrath by the king of Saxony, and in 1820 a knight of the civil order of merit. His philological lectures, in which grammar and criticism were subordinated to history, went largely attended by hearers from all parts of Germany. He died at Leipzig on the 13th of December 1832. He edited a number of classical authors: Pedo Albinovanus (1783), Pindar and the Scholia (1792–1795), Aristophanes (with others, 1794, &c.), Euripides (1778-1788), Apollonius Rhodius (1797), Demosthenes De Pace (1799), Plato (1813-1819), Cicero (1795-1807), Titus Calpurnius Siculus (1803). He translated Ferguson’s Fall of the Roman Republic and Goldsmith’s History of Greece, and added two volumes to Bauer’s Thucydides. He also wrote on theological and historical subjects, and edited philological and bibliographical journals. He possessed a large and valuable library of 24,000 volumes.