Hirschfeld, Hartwig

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HIRSCHFELD, HARTWIG (1854–1934), scholar of Judeo-Arabic literature. Hirschfeld, who was born in Thorn, Prussia, received his doctorate from Strasbourg (1878). He immigrated to England in 1889 and taught first at Montefiore College in Ramsgate. In 1901 he became both librarian and professor of Semitic languages at Jews' College, London, and lector in Hebrew, Semitic epigraphy, and Ethiopian at University College, London, where he was appointed full professor in 1924. Hirschfeld's chief interest lay in the interplay between the Arab and Jewish cultures as well as in the Arabic literature of the Jews. He published The Book Chasari (Kusari) by Judah ha-Levi (1886), a critical edition of the original Arabic text and the Hebrew translation by Judah ibn Tibbon, and also a German (1885) and an English translation of this work (1905; enlarged edition 1931); the Hebrew translation of The Book of Definitions by Isaac Israeli (Steinschneider-Festschrift, 1896); various studies on the Koran (Jewish Elements in the Koran (dissertation, 1878); Contributions to Explication of the Koran (1901), among others); Arabic Chrestomathy in Hebrew Characters (1892); Descriptive Catalogue of the Hebrew Mss. of the Montefiore Library (1904); Yefet ibn Ali's (Karaite) Arabic Commentary on Nahum (1911); Qirqisānī Studies (1918); and Literary History of Hebrew Grammarians and Lexicographers (1926). In addition, Hirschfeld wrote numerous articles in various journals concerning problems of Arabic and Hebrew philology and bibliography; of especial importance is a series of essays concerning the Arabic fragments in the Cairo *Genizah (jqr, vols., 15–20, 1903–08).


A. Heymann, Orientalisches Taschenbuch (1912), 18; I. Harris, in: Jews' College Jubilee Volume (1906), cxii ff.; I. Epstein, in: S. Federbush (ed.), Ḥokhmat Yisrael be-Ma'arav Eiropah, 4 (1959), 497f.