Rozen, Viktor Romanovich
Born Feb. 21 (Mar. 5), 1849, in Tallinn; died Jan. 10 (23), 1908, in St. Petersburg. Russian Orientalist and Arabist. Academician of the St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences (1890).
In 1870, Rozen graduated from the faculty of Oriental languages at the University of St. Petersburg. He joined the faculty as a privatdocent in 1872, later becoming a professor and, from 1893 to 1902, serving as dean. In 1885 he became head of the Eastern Division of the Russian Archaeological Society, and in 1896 he founded Zapiski vostochnogo otdeleniia Russkogo arkheologicheskogo obshchestva (Transactions of the Eastern Division of the Russian Archaeological Society). The creation of a new school of Oriental studies is credited to Rozen’s activity.
Although Rozen studied primarily the spiritual culture of the Arab countries as reflected in literature and scholarly works, he was also interested in the political history of these countries. He is the author of a monograph on socioeconomic conditions in the central regions of the Caliphate in the ninth and tenth centuries. He introduced modern techniques and methods of investigating historical sources and conducting textual analysis. He studied and published Arabic sources on the history of Russia and published an annotated translation of parts of the chronicle of the 11th-century Arab Christian historian Yahya of Antioch. He took part in an international publication of the History of al-Tabari. A number of Rozen’s works are devoted to the study and description of Arabic and Persian manuscripts.
In the course of his research, Rozen overcame what were sometimes idealist conceptions of history and adopted a materialist explanation of cultural phenomena. He also criticized Europocentrism in the study of the world historical process.
WORKSIzvestiia al-Bekri i drugikh avtorov o Rusi i slavianakh. St. Petersburg, 1878.
Imperator Vasilii Bolgaroboitsa. St. Petersburg, 1883.
“Prolegomena k novomy izdaniiu Ibn-Fadlana.” Zapiski Vostochnogo otd. russkogo arkheologicheskogo obshchestva, 1903, vol. 15.
“K voprosu ob arabskikh perevodakh Khudai-Name.” In the collection Vostochnye zametki, St. Petersburg, 1896.
REFERENCESPamiati akademika V. R. Rozena. Moscow-Leningrad, 1947.
Krachkovskii, I. Iu. Soch., vol. 5. Moscow-Leningrad, 1958. Pages 440–47.
“Spisok trudov barona V. R. Rozena.” Zapiski Vostochnogo otd. russkogo arkheologicheskogo ob-va, 1909, vol. 18 (supplement).
Dopolnenie k bibl. rabot barona V. R. Rozena. Leningrad, 1928.
KH. I. KIL’BERG