August Ludwig Schlözer

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Schlözer, August Ludwig

 

Born July 5, 1735, in Gaggstadt; died Sept. 9,1809, in Göttingen. German historian, philologist, and statistician. Adjunct of the St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences (1762). Honorary member of the Society of History and Russian Antiquities (1804).

Schlözer studied at the universities of Wittenberg and Göttingen. At the invitation of G. F. Miller, he worked in Russia from 1761 to 1767 and studied the Old Russian chronicles. As a supporter of the Norman theory of the origin of Rus’, he was sharply criticized by M. V. Lomonosov. Schlözer contributed to the publication of V. N. Tatishchev’s History of Russia. In 1763 and 1764 he composed a grammar of the Russian language. After returning to Germany he taught history and statistics at the University of Göttingen and wrote a number of works on Russian history. His principal work, Nestor, had a positive influence on the development of the study of sources in Russia.

A rationalist thinker, Schlözer remained a representative of the moderate trend of the Enlightenment and a supporter of enlightened absolutism. He elaborated concepts of universal history and protested against the division of peoples into “historical” and “nonhistorical.”

Schlözer became a foreign honorary member of the St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences in 1769.

REFERENCES

Cherepnin, L. V. “A. L. Shletser i ego mesto v razvitii russkoi istoricheskoi nauki.” In the collection Mezhdunarodnye sviazy Rossii v XVII–XVIII vv. Moscow, 1966.
Peshtich, S. L. Russkaia istoriografiia XVIII v., Part 2. Leningrad, 1965.
Lomonosov, Schlözer, Pallas. Berlin, 1962.