Born Sept. 28, 1858, in Tilsit; died Dec. 20, 1931, in Berlin. German archaeologist. Professor at the University of Berlin (1902-27).
Kossinna was one of the first to pose the problem of the possibility of determining the ethnic origin of a given ancient people by the method of mapping archaeological cultures. This method is used by modern archaeologists to determine areas of settlement and migration of large masses of people in antiquity. Kossinna’s work was characterized by extreme nationalism. He advanced the absurd hypothesis that supposedly 14 prehistoric civilizing missions of ancient Germans, to whom all the European nations are indebted for their culture, once took place. His nationalistic theories were used by German fascism.
WORKSDie deutsche Vorgeschichte, eine hervorragend nationale Wissenschaft. Leipzig, 1912.
Die Indogermanen. Leipzig, 1921.
Ursprung und Verbreitung der Germanen in vor- und frühge-schichtlicher Zeit. Berlin, 1926.