Born Oct. 17 (28), 1793, in Kalviai, in present-day Skuodas Raion; died Nov. 24 (Dec. 6), 1864, in Papile, in present-day Akmene Raion. Lithuanian historian and writer-educator. The son of a peasant.
In 1825, Daukantas graduated from the University of Vilnius and worked in Riga (1825–34) and St. Petersburg (1835–51). In The History of Lithuania From Ancient Times and other works, Daukantas gave a romantically idealized account of Lithuania’s historical past (especially prior to the 15th century). He believed that serfdom had been brought to Lithuania by foreign “landowners and priests.” Daukantas acknowledged that feudal labor conscriptions were unjust and that the peasants’ resistance to these conscriptions was justified. He believed that the land that the peasants cultivated was their property and that it had been seized by the lords. Daukantas was the first to show the role of the Catholic Church as an organizer of and participant in the raids of the Teutonic knights on Lithuania. He collected and published Lithuanian folklore (Žemaičiai Folk Songs, 1846) and compiled dictionaries of the Lithuanian language.
WORKSDarbai senuju lietuviu ir Žemaičiu. Kaunas, 1929.
Lietuvos istórija, vols. 1–2. Plymouth. 1893–97.
Būdq senoves lietuviu kalnenu ir Žemaičiu. [Kaunas, 1935.]
Rinktiniai raŝlai. [Vilnius] 1955.
Rinktine[4th ed.]. Kaunas. 1960.
REFERENCEOcherki po istorii filosofskoi i obshchestvenno-politicheskoi mysli narodov SSSR. vol. 2. Moscow. 1956.
IU. I. ZHIUGZHDA