Aleksandr Smirnitskii

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Smirnitskii, Aleksandr Ivanovich


Born Mar. 24 (Apr. 6), 1903, in Moscow; died there Apr. 22, 1954. Soviet philologist and linguist.

Smirnitskii graduated from the department of social sciences at the First Moscow State University in 1924. He taught at the Second Moscow State University in 1930, at the Moscow Institute of Philosophy, Literature, and History in 1934 and 1935, and at the First Moscow State Pedagogical Institute of Foreign Languages from 1936 to 1941. He was a professor at Moscow State University from 1942 to 1951 and served as director of the division of Germanic languages at the Institute of Linguistics of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR from 1950 to 1954.

Smirnitskii’s chief works dealt with runology and included Swedish Runic Inscriptions of the Viking Era (1939) and On the Language of Old Nordic Runic Inscriptions (1947). In collaboration with B. Iu. Aikhenval’d he translated E. Tegnér’s Frithiof’s Saga (1935) and the Old Icelandic saga of the same name (1935). Smirnitskii conducted research on the lexicon, grammar, and history of the English language. He wrote many works on English philology and on comparative, historical, and general linguistics. He was awarded two orders and several medals.


Ob“eklivnost’sushcheslovovaniia iazyka. Moscow, 1954.
Drevneangliiskii iazyk. Moscow, 1955.
Leksikologiia angliiskogo iazyka. Moscow, 1956.
Sintaksis angliiskogo iazyka. Moscow, 1957.


Reformatskii, A. A. “Pamiati professora A. I. Smirnitskogo.” Voprosy iazykoznaniia, 1954, no. 6.
Mednikova, E. M. Aleksandr Ivanovich Smirnitskii. Moscow. 1968.

T. V. VENTTSEL’ [23–1815–]

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.