The Encyclopedia Americana (1920)/Brugmann, Friedrich Karl

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BRUGMANN, broog-mạn, Friedrich Karl, German philologist: b. Wiesbaden, 10 March 1849. He was educated at Halle and Leipzig; was instructor in the gymnasium at Wiesbaden and at Leipzig; and in 1872-77 was assistant at the Russian Institute of Classical Philology at the latter place. In 1877 he was lecturer at the University of Leipzig, and in 1882 became professor of comparative philology there; in 1884 he took the same position at the University of Freiburg, but returned to Leipzig in 1887 as successor to Curtius. He is one of the chief representatives of the new school of philologists and his researches have done much to revolutionize the study of philology. This school, known as that of the “Neo-grammarians,” followed Leskien, especially in urging the inviolability of laws of sound changes, and in emphasizing the working of analogy as an important linguistic factor, as well as in laying stress on the observation of phonetic laws and their operation in modern languages. As joint editor with Curtius of ‘The Studies in Greek and Latin Grammar,’ he wrote an article for this work on ‘Nasilis Sonans,’ in which he defended theories so radical that Curtius afterward disclaimed them. His conclusions are now generally accepted. His most important work, summarizing his conclusions, is ‘Outline of the Comparative Grammar of the Indo-Germanic Languages’ (translated into English); he also wrote ‘Morphological Researches in the Indo-Germanic Languages’ (with Osthoff); ‘A Problem of Homeric Textual Criticism’ (1870); ‘Lithuanian Folk Songs and Tales’ (1882); ‘The Present Position of Philology’; ‘Greek Grammar’; and ‘Short Comparative Grammar’ (1902). Brugmann was knighted by the King of Saxony, and in 1896 he was invited, with other distinguished scholars, to attend the jubilee of Princeton University, where he received the degree of doctor of laws.