Born Dec. 19, 1865, in Magdeburg; died Sept. 12, 1936, in Giessen. German linguist.
Hirt studied at the universities of Leipzig and Freiburg with such neogrammarians as K. Brugmann, A. Leskien, and E. Sievers. He became a professor at the University of Leipzig in 1896 and was a professor at the University of Giessen from 1912 to 1936. In his principal works, which dealt with Indo-European linguistics, Hirt studied Indo-European accent and vowel gradation. He was the author of Indo-Germanic Grammar (vols. 1–7, 1921–37), and he pursued research on the culture and original homeland of the Indo-European peoples. Some of Hirt’s ideas are open to question, such as his theories on vowel gradation and on the structure of roots.
WORKSDer indogermanische Akzent. Strasbourg, 1895.
Der indogermanische Ablaut. Strasbourg, 1900.
Die Indogermanen, vols. 1–2. Strasbourg, 1905–07.