Jan E.M. Houben
jemhouben at gmail.com
Wed Sep 15 21:18:05 UTC 2021
Please have a closer look at the history of your beautiful city.
Tsar Peter the Great kept good scientific and cultural contacts with the
Netherlands (at that time the Dutch Republic) and for some period --
especially when the forefathers of Böhtlingk relocated there -- only or
especially Dutch were allowed to settle in the newly founded St.
Petersburg, originally named, in Dutch style, Sankt-Pieter-Burkh.
"Otto B. came from a respected and wealthy German merchant family who -
coming from Lübeck - had already settled in the northern residence when
Petersburg was founded" ("Otto B. entstammte einer angesehenen und
begüterten deutschen Kaufmannsfamilie, die -- aus Lübeck kommend -- sich
schon bei der Gründung Petersburgs in der nordischen Residenz ansässig
gemacht hatte", Biographisches Jahrbuch).
A massive presence of Germans and the existence of a German Lutheran
congregation in St. Petersburg in the *later*18th and early 19th
centuries can of course not be doubted by anyone.
I did not write or think that Otto Böhtlingk was Dutch, but that his
forefathers adopted, formally or administratively, the Dutch nationality in
order to settle in the Russian empire. That is not the same.
And in any case, as we have seen, even if they perhaps did not apply this
administrative device (although it seems likely at that time that they
did), Böhtlingks' forefathers belonged for some time to the Dutch merchant
community in St. Petersburg.
And in any case, my main point with regard to Pāṇini is that his first
successful European interpreter, Otto Böhtlingk, had, just as apparently
Pāṇini himself, a strong merchant community background, whether or not this
merchant community was (originally) Dutch-Republican and (later on,
gradually more and more predominantly) Prussian.
On Wed, 15 Sept 2021 at 21:28, Evgeniya Desnitskaya <khecari at yandex.ru>
> Dear Jan,
> One can hardly doubt the existence of a German Lutheran congregation in
> St. Petersburg in 18th-early 19th centuries. Given the number of Germans in
> Russia of that time I wonder why do think that only Dutch were allowed to
> settle in Russia. Cf.
> Among numerous Lutheran churches in Saint Petersburg some were definetely
> German. E.g. St.-Annen-Kirche was built in 1770-th for German Lutherans.
> As for Böhtlingk,it is usually believed that he belonged to a German
> family from Lüb <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/L%C3%BCbeck>eck that
> settled in Russia in 1713. What are the reasons to think he was Dutch?
> Evgeniya Desnitskaya
> Institute of Oriental Manuscripts
> Russian Academy of Sciences
> 15.09.2021, 18:57, "Jan E.M. Houben via INDOLOGY" <
> indology at list.indology.info>:
> Dear Roland,
> What remains is that Böhtlingk's family belonged to the Dutch merchant
> community in St. Petersburg.
> Whether or not his forefathers had adopted the Dutch nationality which at
> that time was practically the only way to be officially allowed to settle
> in the Russian empire depends on the archival evidence that can be found,
> *minus* coverup attempts that may have followed... There were very old
> Lutheran congregations in the Dutch republic preaching since the 16th
> century in 'Nederduits' -- grammatically standardized several centuries
> before 'Hochdeutsch' -- so the religious or even religious-linguistic
> affiliation need not be a decisive factor.
> N.B. the existence of a German Lutheran congregation in St. Petersburg in
> the early and mid-19th century should not be construed according to the
> political situation of middle Europe in the late 19th century,
> Jan Houben
> On Wed, 15 Sept 2021 at 13:43, Roland Steiner via INDOLOGY <
> indology at list.indology.info> wrote:
> > Otto Böhtlingk, whose forefathers adopted the Dutch nationality
> > in order to be able to settle as merchants in the Russian Empire.
> According to the research of Agnes Stache-Weiske, this claim, which
> can be found in various places (e.g. Windisch, Kern, Mylius), is not
> true. It is correct that Böhtlingk's father belonged to the Dutch
> merchant community in St. Petersburg, but according to Stache-Weiske
> this says nothing about his nationality. A relatively sure indication,
> however, is the religious affiliation of the family, which from the
> beginning belonged to the German Lutheran congregation in St.
> Petersburg and not to the Dutch Reformed Church.
> Böhtlingk's father only acquired Russian citizenship shortly before
> his death, but only for himself and not for his family. It was only
> when he was awarded the title of nobility that Otto Böhtlingk himself
> became a Russian citizen in 1888.
> Compare Agnes Stache-Weiske: "... für die Wißenschaft, der ich von
> ganzer Seele lebe", Otto Böhtlingk (1815-1904): ein Gelehrtenleben,
> rekonstruiert und beschrieben anhand seiner Briefe, Wiesbaden:
> Harrassowitz 2017,, p. 12 f.
> Roland Steiner
> INDOLOGY mailing list
> INDOLOGY at list.indology.info
> *Jan E.M. Houben*
> Directeur d'Études, Professor of South Asian History and Philology
> *Sources et histoire de la tradition sanskrite*
> École Pratique des Hautes Études (EPHE, Paris Sciences et Lettres)
> *Sciences historiques et philologiques *
> Groupe de recherches en études indiennes (EA 2120)
> *johannes.houben [at] ephe.psl.eu <johannes.houben at ephe.psl.eu>*
> *https://www.classicalindia.info* <https://www.classicalindia.info/>
> LabEx Hastec OS 2021 -- *L'Inde Classique* augmentée: construction,
> et transformations d'un savoir scientifique
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