Schele de Vere, Maximilian

Schele de Vere, Maximilian

(1820–98) philologist; born in Wexiö, Sweden. He showed an early aptitude for languages and obtained a Ph.D. from the University of Berlin in 1841. He emigrated to America in 1843, and in 1844 he was appointed professor of modern languages at the University of Virginia. He was among the first in this country to embrace the methods of comparative linguistics, leading to his Outlines in Comparative Philology (1853). At the founding of the University of Virginia, Thomas Jefferson had advocated the study of Anglo-Saxon and this recommendation was finally realized in the teaching of Schele de Vere, a pioneer in Anglo-Saxon studies. Other significant works are Studies in English (1867) and Americanisms: The English of the New World (1871).