The Encyclopedia Americana (1920)/Bohlen, Peter von
BOHLEN, Peter von, German Orientalist: b. Wüppels, Oldenburg, 9 March 1796; d. Halle, 6 Feb. 1840. He spent the first 20 years of his life in straitened circumstances, but his talents and perseverance attracted attention, and he obtained admission to the Hamburg gymnasium. He afterward studied the Eastern languages at Halle and Bonn; and he obtained an appointment at Königsberg, first in 1825 as extraordinary, and afterward in 1830 as ordinary professor of Oriental literature. Bohlen has left many works which fully support his title to the high place which he held among Oriental scholars. One of the most important is a work entitled ‘Das alte Indien’ (2 vols., 1830-31), not yet superseded by any other work on the same subject. Other publications of his are ‘Die Genesis historisch-kritisch erläutert’ (1835) and editions of Bhartrihari's ‘Sententiæ’ (1833) and Kalidasa's ‘Ritusanhara’ (1840). The details of his life are given with great minuteness and honesty in an ‘Autobiography’ (Königsberg 1841), which is full of interest, and cannot be read without producing a full conviction that he was no less distinguished by his amiability in private life than by his literary acquirements.