Part I: Eugen Kölbing and the Foundational Period (1877-1899)

 Die Geschichte der anglistischen Mediävistik im deutschsprachigen Kulturkreis ist noch nicht geschrieben, wie überhaupt eine kritische Aufarbeitung der Geschichte des Faches Anglistik & Amerikanistik noch nicht erfolgt ist.

(Hildegard L. C. Tristram, 2001)

[E]s will mir scheinen, uns fehlt allzusehr die fröhliche lust des observirens, die in keck ursprünglicher wissbegier, ohne sich durch überängstliche akribie lähmen zu lassen, über die jahrhundete hin eilt. [...] [B]eklag ich ein unwiederbringlich verlorenes jugendglück unsrer wissenschaft?

(Gustav Roethe, 1898)


As the proliferation of academic centers and publications in the area of Wissenschaftsgeschichte since the 1970s demonstrates, interest in the history of academic disciplines has been and is still growing by leaps and bounds. Investigations into the discipline of English studies in Germany (called Englische Philologie or Anglistik) had an enthusiastic start with the work of Thomas Finkenstaedt, Gunta Haenicke, and their collaborators at the University of Augsburg from the late 1970s through the early 1990s. They researched and published an introductory narrative and several essential handbooks on the history of Anglistik and began to extend their efforts to other European countries.1 Since the late 1990s, a new wave of interest has been sparked by Renate Haas and Balz Engler's European English Studies: Contributions Towards the History of a Discipline, a project sponsored by the European Society for the Study of English, Stephan Kohl's Anglistik: Research Paradigms and Institutional Policies 1930-2000, an effort growing out of several meetings of the professional organization of German-speaking Anglicists, the Anglistenverband, and the comprehensive work done by Frank-Rutger Hausmann on English studies during the Third Reich.2 Despite these publications, relatively little attention has yet been paid to the role of scholarly journals in the history of English studies. As they accompany, often over decades, scholars and paradigms in a specific field, they afford a long-term perspective on political, social, and cultural developments and changes in the academy, the nation, and the world that cannot be provided by the examination of individual essays, monographs, biographies of scholars, or editions.3

The following investigation, which will appear in three separate installments in the Erfurt Electronic Studies in English (EESE), intends to present a case study of medieval scholarship published in Englische Studien, the first journal world-wide dedicated exclusively to the investigation of English language and literature, from its inception in 1877 through its discontinuation in 1945. The focus on medieval literature and language studies is as much due to my own area of expertise as to the concentration on the earlier periods by the first generations of scholars in English Philology. Concise narrative introductions in each of the three essays will attempt to summarize various observations on scholarly discourses, methods, practices, and practitioners. These introductions will be complemented by comprehensive chronological annotated bibliographies. The excellent searchability of these bibliographies in electronic format is what convinced me to submit the work to EESE rather than to any of the existing print publications in the field.4 This first installment of my investigation discusses the foundational period of the journal, a period that coincides with the editorship of its founding editor, Eugen Kölbing, from 1877 through 1899.

Beginnings Times Two

In October 1876, Eugen Kölbing, Privatdozent for Germanic languages and literatures at the Prussian University of Breslau, sent out a brochure announcing his plan to establish a publication that would, after an initial period of gauging interest among colleagues, become a valuable "voice" (the original German word is "Organ") for the young subject of English philology.5 His cautious description for the project was due to the negative sales record of the Jahrbuch für romanische und englische Philologie, a journal offering space for both Romance and English language and literature publications, just as both subject would be taught by one and the same university professor from the 1850s through the 1870s.6 Increasing academic specialization, the victorious war with France, and the founding of the German Empire in 1871, when the Prussian King Wilhelm was proclaimed German Emperor at Versailles, helped separate English from Romance Philology. English, because it was considered a German(ic) subject, immediately received a chair of its own at the newly Germanized "Imperial University" of Strassburg (Bernhard Ten Brink) in 1872. The other German (and Austrian) universities would soon follow suit, and Kölbing's own position - he was appointed coordinator of English Philology in Breslau in 1876 - can be seen as part of the increasing independence of the nascent academic discipline. Still, in 1877 there were relatively few colleagues devoting their full attention to English Philology, and thus Kölbing was not sure he would be able to produce two, three, or even four regular issues per annum, a pressure that would oblige him, as he states, to accept less important contributions not strong enough "to advance" the "scientific endeavors" he had in mind.7 Because of his doubts about the sustainability of his project, Kölbing abstained from inviting his colleagues to send contributions.

Kölbing's Leipzig colleague, Richard Paul Wül[c]ker, was more optimistic about sustaining a fully-fledged and regularly published journal in his discipline's early years. Only two weeks after the publication of the brochure announcing Englische Studien by Kölbing's publisher, Gebrüder Henninger in Heilbronn, Wülker sent out his own publisher's brochure, announcing his plan to found Anglia, a journal [Zeitschrift] dedicated to the field of "Englische Philologie." Unlike Kölbing's, his announcement included an invitation to colleagues to contribute to the new project. The first annual volume of Englische Studien, containing three continually paginated issues, appeared in 1877; the first annual volume of Anglia in 1878. As might be expected, both journals engaged in a flurry of heated exchanges about the priority, value, and quality of both ventures during the first few years of their existence.

Foundational Moves

The almost simultaneous creation of two new academic publications by German Anglicists should not surprise. Like their teachers and colleagues in German and Romance Philology one or two academic generations earlier, Wülcker and Kölbing simply demonstrated a keen understanding of the foundational moves necessary to anchor their young discipline among their more established sister philologies.8 Moreover, they were keenly aware of the career boost the editorship of the first exclusively Anglistic journal or book series would provide. The shock of the sudden appearance of another publication that might challenge one's own central role within the discipline is evident from both editors' reactions: Wülcker stresses Kölbing's decision not to have Englische Studien count as a journal since Englische Studien could then claim an albeit ridiculously short primogeniture of one year.9 Kölbing, who reads Wülcker's move as an attempt to denigrate Englische Studien as something somehow less than a journal, asks the rhetorical question about what might be the difference between a journal (Anglia) and another publication in one's field (Englische Studien) when that second publication also published two to three issues annually and had those issues bound together as an annual volume at the end of each year. He answers his own question as follows:
Certainly the only [difference] can be that the first one is held to certain fixed publication dates. If three issues appear, the first one is due out on the first of May, the second on the first of September, and the third at the end of December. However, since the first issue of Wülcker's journal appeared as late as the second half of June, 1877, the third only in mid-March, 1878, it is all too tempting to think of lucus a non lucendo.10
Kölbing, who likens Wülcker's distinction between Anglia (journal) and Englische Studien (non-journal) to the fourth-century grammarian Honoratus Maurus's famous pseudo-etymologies by far fetched or non-sensical opposites, further claims that, had he known of Wülcker's plans, he would have discontinued his own project to support his colleague's or would have proposed a possible merger. Since, however, he announced his plans first, he would have expected Wülcker to propose either of these solutions.11

It would be problematic to put too much trust into Kölbing's or Wülcker's protestations. All they really do is live up "philology's" reputation as being more "disputatious" than any other academic subject.12 Out of either scholar's attacks and counterattacks speaks the competitive voice of two colleagues, both of whom see in the respective other a potential diminution of their own role as founding fathers of English Philology. The altercation between both editors includes the petty listing of printing problems, individual typographic errors, and similar quisquilia. They charge each other with "editorial negligence," "gross distortion of facts," and claim that only their own positions are "factual" and "impartial."13 In secret, however, both scholars did everything to compete with one another for contributors and readers and attempted to learn from the respective other's accusations: For example, in a "Postscript" to the third and final issue of volume 1 (1877), pp. 545-46, the publishers of Englische Studien welcome Kölbing's decision to be flexible about the publication dates of the various issues and volumes of the journal and defend it against any assumption that such procedure would make it less important than a more regularly appearing periodical. Moreover, they stress that a less conventional publication mode of their texts is to the contributors' advantage, since they are not restricted by a pre-established date of publication or specific numbers of pages for one issue. This "Postscript," perhaps penned by Kölbing himself or at least suggested by him point by point, also includes an invitation to contribute to all colleagues in the field, thus emulating Wülcker's invitation in his Anglia brochure.

The entire altercation was little more than a storm in a tea cup since, in the end, both journals would find enough contributors to survive and even prosper. However, Kölbing would insist on editing Englische Studien without fixed publication dates, thus publishing no volume in one year (e.g., 1878) and several times two volumes in others (e.g., 1889, 1892, 1895, and 1898). Nevertheless, Englische Studien was looked upon and cited as belonging to the genre "journal" or "periodical" by reviewers, readers, and contributors in Germany and beyond, and its reputation as one of the two leading journals in the field was not undermined by its editor's somewhat atypical policy.14 Interestingly, Max Niemeyer Verlag in Tübingen, the publishers of Anglia, continue until this day to use the terminological différance separating Wülcker and Kölbing to describe their publication as "founded in 1878" and thus "the oldest Anglistic journal" (my italics).15 Quite clearly, that honor belongs to Kölbing's Englische Studien, which appeared a little earlier than its competitor. The founding editors of Anglia - R. P. Wülcker shared editorial responsibilities with his former advisee, Moritz Trautmann – actually acknowledged the priority of Englische Studien in their 1899 eulogy on Kölbing, stating that it was he who had given the field "its first journal exclusively dedicated to the study of English language and literature."16

With hindsight, one can see that both journals, mainly due to the specialty areas of their editors, carved out their own niche within the field: Englische Studien would concentrate more on the Middle English period, while Anglia would focus more on Anglo-Saxon studies. In this manner, the existence of two foundational journals became more of an "embarrass de richesse" for German Anglistik than a problem.17

The Prevalence of Medieval Studies

English studies in Germany and Austria is a latecomer and the least prestigious among the so-called "New Philologies" at the modern university. Small wonder that the field's representatives immediately concentrated on emulating those discursive moves which had already helped institutionalize its "older" sister disciplines against the dominant Classical Philology. In addition to founding academic journals, editing heretofore unedited historical texts, cataloguing the quickly increasing scholarly production in bibliographies, and securing international connections, it is mainly the language and literature of pre-Shakespearean Britain the founding fathers of the discipline paid attention to. It was the generally accepted understanding that historical linguistic monuments only deserved to be studied at a university if they offered the same degree of difficulty as the works of Homer, Hesiod, Cicero, and Quintilian. Although Jacob Grimm had praised the English language as characterized by "strength," "vigor," "highly spiritual genius and wonderfully happy development," and "proceeded from a surprisingly intimate alliance of the two oldest languages of modern Europe - the Germanic and the Romanesque," there existed the widespread conviction, expressed for example by Arthur Schopenhauer, that languages, "especially from a grammatical point of view, are the more perfect the older they are" and that "by degrees they become ever inferior, from the lofty Sanskrit down to English jargon, that cloak of ideas which is patched and compiled from scraps of different materials."18 Old English, since it resembled Classical Greek and Latin, both synthetic languages, could most easily be defended against the hubris of colleagues in already recognized disciplines. Middle English, because of the intricacy of dialect variation and complicated manuscript histories and authorship issues, also quickly met existing academic standards. The careers of the first German chairs of English philology, both educated by specialists in Classical and German(ic) philology, demonstrate these early areas of concentration: Bernhard Ten Brink, chair of English Philology at Strassburg, made a name for himself mainly through his monographs on Beowulf (1888) and Chaucer (1884).19 Julius Zupitza, who was appointed to the prestigious professorship in English Philology at the University of Berlin in 1876, gained his reputation through his 1882 facsimile edition of Beowulf and his critical editions of Cynewulf's Elene (1877), Guy of Warwick (1883), and the Pardoner's Prologue and Tale (1890ff.).20 His stubborn resistance to teaching and researching anything post-medieval reveals the unmistakable late nineteenth-century preference for pre-modern texts. When encouraged to teach a course on Shakespeare, Zupitza responded that Shakespeare was only of interest to him in matters of historical linguistics. And when Alois Brandl published a monograph on Coleridge, he commented to colleagues that his former student had written "an interesting novel."21 Similarly, Eugen Kölbing relates on the first page of the first issue of his journal that the main focus of his own studies is on historical texts that are important "in terms of grammar," less on those that provide interesting "content."22

The first 25 volumes of Englische Studien provide ample evidence for the prevalence of medieval scholarship in the foundational phase of the discipline: A simple count of page numbers per literary/linguistic period shows that more than 50% of all essays and reviews deal with medieval subject matter, and both competing journal editors, although medievalists themselves, acknowledge this fact by accusing each other of discriminating against the later periods.23 Due to Kölbing's own specialty, the Middle English period and especially the romances take up most space among the essays on medievalia. Among reviews of medieval publications, however, Beowulf and various dictionaries and textbooks of Old English receive most critical attention. Beyond the medieval period, only Shakespeare and Byron attain an exceptional status, the earlier because of his general cultural capital and his special reception history in Germany, the latter only from the early 1890s onward and because Kölbing showed much personal scholarly interest in the Romantic poet. The percentage of medieval publications declines somewhat toward the end of the nineteenth century, opening up more room for studies of early modern and modern literature and pedagogy.24 In fact, from the mid-1880s onward, Englische Studien does full justice to its subtitle: "Organ für englische philologie unter mitberücksichtigung des englischen unterrichts auf höheren schulen." More than its rival, Anglia, Englische Studien provided a forum for the discussion of the various methods of the teaching of English at the Gymnasium, Realymnasium, and Mittelschule levels.

The Philological Approach

So many confusing things have been written about the term and academic practice of "philology" that it would be impossible to do justice to its complex history within the frame of this introductory essay. Those interested in the term's most recent permutations should explore the self-absorbed and confusing attempt at a re-invention and -definition of a "New Philology" by a group of U.S. scholars in Romance literature and language studies in the 1990s.25

What experts will probably agree on is that German and Austrian scholars of literatures and languages during the final third of the nineteenth century, in order to compete with their colleagues in the natural sciences, increasingly abandoned subjective aesthetics, speculative metaphysics, and social or political considerations in order to embrace pseudoscientific methodologies. During this process, earlier, more broadly conceived conceptualizations of philology as the all-encompassing study of the history and knowledge of all human thought and activity (for example, August Boeckh's famous "Erkenntnis des Erkannten," or Jacob Grimm's adventurously comparative practice), were narrowed down and formalized into the various positivistic, easily teachable, and repetitive practices of diachronic linguistics, dialectology, prosody, lexicography, etymology, grammar, textual/manuscript study, source study, and author-based literary history.26 While all of these practices appear individually in the medievalist contributions to Englische Studien, it is the area of textual study that perceptibly dominates all others. However, the fully critical evaluation of an historical text for the contributors to the journal often demanded the application of several, if not all, the existing "philological" practices in order to establish the best possible "critical" edition.

Quite fascinatingly, German philologists developed an editorial practice far different from that of their British counterparts. Eugen Kölbing himself clarifies this general distinction in a review of Jakob Schipper's 1877 edition of the Late Middle English Alexius legends:
For the editing of Middle English [textual] monuments there currently still exist two glaringly contrasting positions: On the one hand there is the desire to print exact diplomatic offprints of texts, i.e., to print and publish any somehow important manuscript of each work individually and only then to proceed with these as a foundation; on the other hand, there is the position to produce - as is being done in other areas of the New Philology - critical editions as quickly as possible. English editors [...] predominantly pursue the earlier solution; Schipper's short text provides us with an example of the latter, [which is prevalent in Germany].27
Kölbing's distinction not only demonstrates German Anglicists' dependence on the methods developed earlier by Classical, German, and Romance Philology, but also their insistence on exerting control over the process of preserving and publishing historical texts. Not content with simply saving such cultural records for the present as well as future generations, as does the diplomatic offprint, they developed strict rules about securing the authenticity of these texts. Ever suspicious of the unreliable process of textual transmission, they applied a whole host of critical analytical, and classificatory methods (e.g., recensio, examinatio, emendatio, glosses, commentary, annotations) without which, they claimed, the meanings of historical texts could not be correctly described. Following the successful forays into the relationships of the Indo-European languages by the comparative philology practiced by Friedrich Schlegel, Rasmus Rask, Franz Bopp, and Jacob Grimm, late nineteenth-century philologists systematized their forebears' discoveries into laws (Verner's, Grimm's, Kuhn's, etc.), quite visibly in an attempt at attaining the same validity for their results as claimed by their colleagues in the natural sciences. As Jacob Grimm foresaw as early as 1851, in his eulogy on the famed philologist Karl Lachmann, not Sachphilologie (i.e., studying words in order to learn about entire subjects), but Wortphilologie (i.e., studying subjects in order to learn about individual words), would become all the rage at the modern German university.28

The critical editing of an heretofore unedited English manuscript was considered one of the prize projects for a young scholar trying to join the field, and Kölbing encouraged most of his doctoral candidates in Breslau to produce such an edition. In fact, almost all of the 57 dissertations he supervised demanded the application of Textkritik.29 His Dr. phil. candidates print, usually with extended critical textual commentary, an historical text for the first time; collate all existing manuscript and older print versions of a narrative to attribute authorship and discuss authenticity; investigate the major lexicographic or grammatical features; search for sources and/or analogues; compare Middle or Old English translations of Latin or Old French originals; they investigate meter and rhyme; situate a specific text or its motifs within the European and/or national tradition; investigate individual terms; and establish the geographic provenance of a text through an examination of dialect traits. One of the 57 dissertations, Reinhold Merbot's Ästhetische Studien zur angelsächsischen Poesie (1883), appears to consider non-philological issues; and one other study, Heinrich Krautwald's Layamon's Brut verglichen mit Wace's Roman de Brut in Bezug auf die Darstellung der Kulturverhältnisse Englands (1878), appears to apply a textual comparison to predominantly extratextual cultural phenomena. But these are exceptions, and thus, one additional telling feature emerges from the medieval dissertations published in Englische Studien: The young scholars strictly avoid not only direct political or social commentary, but even anything approaching a "reading" or "interpretation". Their texts are excellent examples of "purposeless" positivistic scholarship, another attitude supposed to render them acceptable to contemporary work produced in the natural sciences.30 Jost Hermand has indicated that this strict positivism should be seen as the
[...] faithful reflection of the saturated bourgeoisie in the second half of the nineteenth century, which has given up on the idealism of the 1848 generation, and which is satisfied with the leisurely consolidation of power already gained. Audacious thoughts, political perspectives or social reform are no longer in the foreground, but a sedulous collecting of tiny and tiniest pieces to build an imposing tower of mere facts which was furnished with everything except an idealistic structural frame.31
Hermand's description adequately summarizes the impressions to be gleaned from the majority of these studies. The almost complete absence of any interpretive gesture makes most of these dissertations/articles decidedly unexciting reading. And the hundreds of notes and reviews in these first 25 volumes of Englische Studien, many of which intend only to correct individual spelling errors or variants in one of many manuscripts of a medieval narrative only confirm this impression. George Steiner, when commenting on the temporality and rootedness of human "creation," distinguishes between the rhetoric of timelessness and "irreplaceable everlastingness" which attaches to poetry and the "perceived and statutory linearity" that shackles scientific inventions to the historical moment. "The Homeric epic, the Platonic dialogue, the Vermeer townscape, the Mozart sonata," he explains,
do not grow obsolescent as do the products of invention. A nineteenth-century steam-engine is now an historical curio. A novel by Dostoevski is not. The distinction is at once obvious and intractable. It suggests highly problematic but trenchant differences in the existentialities of time in individual consciousness and in culture. If the past, present, and future of Dante's Commedia are not those of the Riemann hypothesis, what are they?32
Steiner's astute observation may help explain why most of the philological medievalia in Englische Studien are and should no longer be read, while some of the less scientific interpretations and aesthetic, literary, or cultural readings from the same period, let's say by Francis James Child or James Russell Lowell, may still be of value to a contemporary student of Old and Middle English texts.33 Like other scientific results, most of the findings by Kölbing and his contemporaries have been replaced by more comprehensive studies, studies which - based on additional information or more advanced technology not yet available in the 1870s and 1880s - have been able to claim a higher degree of validity than those of their precursors. The scientific study of literature and language was attractive to its practitioners at the modern university because of its easily quantifiable results. However, as quantifiable or "profitable" studies they have proven "ephemeral" because they are
at home in what is wordly and domesticated within their own generative mechanisms. They are, at the trivial or ostentatious level manufactured (one recalls Stalin's "engineers of the soul"). In contrast, serious and major work is never at ease in regard to the unclarities of inception to which it owes its necessarily incomplete, imperfect genesis and performance. It endures because it carries with it the [...] lava-scars left by an inward incandescence and often self-destructive surfacing. In ways difficult to classify yet obvious to the active reader [...], the ephemeral, the opportunistic in thought and the arts remains static.34
If Kölbing's own doctoral candidates span pretty much the complete horizon of these narrowing philological practices of the late nineteenth century, other colleagues mass-produced the exact same approach to the same topics ad nauseam and throughout their entire careers. In 1894, J. E. Wülfing reviews six doctoral dissertations in English Philology from the University of Leipzig. Published between 1889 and 1992, five of them investigate the syntactic use of the verb in a specific Old English text:
The sixth, H. A. Reussner's Untersuchungen über die Syntax in dem angelsächsischen Gedicht vom heiligen Andreas (1889), only appears to be discussing Old English syntax in more general terms. As the reviewer points out, it too centers on the role of the verb, and he adds two more Leipzig dissertation titles with the same specialization to prove his point (T. Wohlfahrt, Die Syntax des Verbums in Aelfric's übersetzung des Heptateuch und des Buches Hiob, 1885; P. T. Kühn, Die Syntax des Verbums in Aelfric's Heiligenleben, 1889). Wülfing indicates that the scholarly texts under review are identical in their titles, content, and even long sections of text. He produces a tongue-in-cheek defense of their authors against a potential charge of plagiarism by stating that, given the generally regular features of Old English syntax, larger differences in the use of the verb in the historical texts under investigation would have been an indication of their authors' making some kind of mistake. If, Wülfing continues, the compilers of these dissertations were asked to engineer such "mechanical concoctions according to template" ("mechanische schablonenmachwerke"), and if scholarly readers will know as much after reading one of them as after reading all of them, the only person who can possibly profit from this kind of academic "slog" is the man who is planning on publishing a primer on Anglo-Saxon syntax.35 This "man of the future," as Wülfing ironically calls him, will have a much easier time at finding example phrases for compiling his envisaged textbook when his sources are all laid out according to the same template.36 Max Kaluza once stressed - albeit guardedly - that there was as least a certain amount of varietas ("eine gewisse mannigfaltigkeit") in the topics suggested and supervised by his own teacher, Kölbing, so that the large number of investigations originating in Breslau did not mean that the English department there had become a "degree mill" ("doktorenfabrik").37 Exactly this insinuation, however, Wülfing reserves for Kölbing's nemesis, Richard Paul Wülcker, the "man of the future" behind the Leipzig dissertations in question.

For most observers outside the philologized academy, however, there was little qualitative différance between the practices of Kölbing and Wülcker and their respective students, all of whom increasingly communicated the discoveries of Jacob Grimm and his contemporaries "as facts, systems divorced from the texts they had been found in."38 In 1885, Eduard Engel, a Dr. phil. and author of a history of English literature written for a general audience and students at secondary schools, responded to an extremely negative review by Kölbing in volume 8, 1885, of Englische Studien. After receiving a copy of the review sent by the publishers, he answers as follows:
I have only read the first page of the review and found my earlier convictions confirmed: namely that there are there is no less suitable a critic for books in literary history than philologists (and as a philologist I have heard about Mr. Kölbing every now and then, not knowing exactly what his achievements are). A philologist, and only a philologist, will believe that he is being critical when accusing me of not having cited this or that specific edition of a work. Of course, he cannot even conceive of the idea that I would never dream of competing with him or any of the other government-patented and -paid "scholar", whose main area of expertise is limited to knowing all manuscripts, all commata and flyspecks in the manuscripts, and whose erudition furthers [...] neither science nor knowledge of literature among educated readers. People like Mr. Kölbing are simply my day-laborers and handmaids. They exist - and are very well paid by the state - in order to produce the best and most comfortable editions for the real workers, those who see in literature something beyond textual collation. For this service we may cite them once in a while in a footnote, but otherwise we, the public and the sciences, ignore them. If we did not ignore them, these professors might deem themselves authors, literary scholars; and God beware that ever happens! They were, are, and will remain copyists and emendators of manuscripts, paid by the state so that the constructive people, who do not have time to strain out gnats, may put their efforts to [good] use.39
German Philology and English Textual Territory

One other reason for this developing and sedulous applying of philological textual practices was that practically all of the historical texts Anglicists were interested in were housed across the (English) channel. Since British universities lagged behind German universities in the process of professionalizing the study of "modern" language and literatures, the few private British scholars with an interest in publishing such texts often saw their own efforts preempted by quickly growing numbers of German professors and their students, who would eagerly copy and edit as many documents as possible during their extended research visits. Henry Sweet, for example, who had set his plans on founding an independent school of English Philology in his country, found that the historical study of English "was being rapidly annexed by the Germans" and resigned himself to searching for "regions yet uninvaded by dissertations and programs" and to playing the role of a "purveyor" to the "swarms of young program-mongers turned out every year by the German universities, so thoroughly trained in all the mechanical details of what may be called 'parasite philology' that no English dilettante can hope to compete with them."40 In a similar vein, Walter W. Skeat remarked sarcastically that he, "being merely a native of London, in which city Chaucer himself was born," might "to some extent be disqualified" to produce a critical edition of Chaucer, since the Germans considered themselves better qualified.41 Other British "dilettantes," especially Frederick Furnivall, welcomed the German interest in medieval British textual terrains since their excellent editorial skills and state-funded time to research sped up the publication of ever so many historical records of the Early English Text Society and similar venues. While Furnivall was not himself in support of the "doctored editions" constructed by his German guests and stressed the human and sociological importance of the texts in question, he shared some of the German scholars' enthusiasm for the application of scientific principles (for example the infamous "rhyme-test") used to attribute certain texts to certain authors.42

Although the German Anglicists' medieval contributions to Englische Studien do not contain too many direct attacks on British scholars, the following description well characterizes the general attitude towards their colleagues' work:
Just as the new imperial Germany rushed to colon(ial)ize territories around the world (Kamerun; Tsingtao; Togoland) and (re-) appropriate regions in Europe (Elsass-Lothringen), its philological scholars quickly moved to stake out areas in other nations' literatures. In English philology the various linguistic and historical connections with Britain made annexing the corpora of Anglo-Saxon and Middle English manuscripts a rewarding target. The processes of exploring, uncovering, transcribing, and editing heretofore unknown original sources in the British libraries happened coevally with the hoisting of the German flag on newly annexed lands. Being first in the editorial process not only inscribed the individual scholar's name onto the bodies of these texts and provided lasting fame, it also diminished the advantage British scholars had for their work through their direct and easy access to the manuscripts. As soon as such a critical edition existed, German scholars could work with it at home and use it as the secure foundation for all the other branches of philological endeavour: critical bibliography, etymology, linguistic and literary history, motif and source study, etc. Moreover, as the edition had been conceived according to their preferred philological practices, they controlled the methodologies, the critical terminology and, thus, the discursive acceptability of other editorial and interpretive efforts. The first colon(ial)izing and later gate-keeping character of this emphasis on Textkritik and other similarly foundational areas (chronology; authenticity; biography) can be gleaned from the fact that most German Chaucer scholars obsessively reviewed every single publication related to these topics while they withheld recognition from enthusiastic, i.e., extra-discursive (e.g., aesthetic, artistic, sociological, psychological) readings. Scholars who accepted the ruling discursive framework and investigated within its boundaries, gained credibility and acceptance and were praised with the recurring vocabulary of industriousness, thoroughness, and - above all - philological exactitude. Scholars who dared use the terms "edition," "critical," or "philological" for work not adhering to the sanctioned paradigms were othered as dilettantes. Such open critique would happen in reviews written in caustic tone and published in the leading academic journals, sometimes in major newspapers. The acceptance of philological paradigms and organisational forms (e.g., the Seminar-structure) in Anglophone and other countries, the reputations of Altphilologie, Germanistik, and Romanistik, the priority in building up an impressive academic infrastructure (chairs, journals, book series), and an easily teachable, formalized and scientistic methodology enabled German Anglicists to enact and secure (for some time) a hegemonic relationship toward non-German scholars [...].43
In Englische Studien, publications by British and U.S. scholars are usually subjected to extensive and painstaking scrutiny due to the strictly applied German paradigms.44 Attempts by scholars from France and Italy are either welcomed – albeit often rather haughtily – as decent and enthusiastic beginnings, especially when they base their work on German sources and acknowledge the German hegemony in the field, or completely ridiculed, when they lack cognizance of German scholarship and/or write for the general public.45 In the latter case, they share the fate of German non-academic attempts at reading Old and Middle English texts.46 The reason for such wholesale rejection was that the representatives of the newly professionalized subject of English Philology felt they needed to build up clear discursive boundaries against non-academic writing, especially journalists, essayists, and feuilletonists (all three often subsumed under the terms "aesthetes" and "dilettantes"), whom they accuse of lacking the new specialists' educational background and of catering solely to contemporary and quotidian tastes, very much to the detriment of a thorough, i.e., historicist perspective.47

English Philology, Written in German

In her preface to Thomas Honegger's 2000 essay collection on Authors, Heroes and Lovers. Essays in Medieval English Literature, Hildegard L. C. Tristram urges young German Anglicists in Medieval Studies to consider communicating not only in English, but also in German. She diagnoses the danger of German being abandoned as a langue légitime of English (medieval) scholarship and reminds colleagues of 150 years of "anglistische Mediävistik," during which German, Austrian, and Swiss scholars, writing in German, "managed to found Medieval Studies as a discipline, create [its] philological tools, and gain world-wide acknowledgement" for their feat.48 While I would fully agree with Tristram's basic desideratum, i.e., the maintenance of a multi- or at least bilingual discourse for scholarship in English (Medieval) Studies in German-speaking countries, her invoking the achievements of various German Anglistic forbears might lead to an incorrect impression. Today's German medievalists are indeed under pressure – because of the importance of English as the universal language of academic study and an increasing monolingualist streak among colleagues in English-speaking countries – to write and publish in English. However, late nineteenth-century and early twentieth-century German and Austrian scholars could count on German as a leading and internationally recognized language in which scientific and philological research was published and read. If, as late as 1930, the German physicist Erwin Schrödinger could proudly proclaim that "the language of physics is German," German Anglicists, often with full support by their British and U.S. colleagues, believed that "a scientific study of English philology and literature is absolutely impossible without a knowledge of German."49 And Walter Jackson Bate, describing the "stranglehold" philological practices – in German – had achieved from the 1890s through the 1940s at Harvard University (and most other U.S. research institutions), relates:
If you took a Ph.D. here [at Harvard] as late as the 1930s, you were suddenly shoved – with grammars written in German – into Anglo-Saxon and Middle Scots, plus Old Norse (Islandic), Gothic, Old French, and so on. I used to sympathize with the Japanese and Chinese students who had come here to study literature, struggling with a German grammar to translate Gothic into English! William Allan Neilson, the famous president of Smith College, had been a professor of English here for years. Forgivably, he stated that the Egyptians took only five weeks to make a mummy, but the Harvard English Department took five years.50
A good number of German-language contributions to Englische Studien by international scholars (see, for example, the contributions by the Danish philologist, Otto Jespersen, and the Dutch philologist, A. E. H. Swaen) confirm the at least equal importance of German and English for late nineteenth-century scholarship in English (Medieval) Studies as well as the hegemonic influence of German Anglistics in general. In fact, it is the agonistic and competitive character of German philologists toward their English counterparts that made them decide to choose German, and not English (after all the language of the target culture whose historical texts they were researching) as the exclusive language of discourse for their own scholarship. If German philologists decided to write their research in English, Wilhelm Vietor tellingly admitted, "every educated Englishman would [...] have more claim" to the title of "philologist."51 Only by writing in German could German scholars outdo Englishmen and -women in the academic study of their country's historical texts.

Perhaps, however, German Anglicists were simply making a virtue of necessity, since their focus on the languages and literatures of the Old and Middle English period rarely included sufficient university classes teaching the active mastery of contemporary written or spoken English. Julius Zupitza's English, for example, was so poor that the Prussian ministry of education tacitly removed the celebrated medievalist from the board of examiners for future teachers of English and replaced him with a lecturer.52 And when Alois Brandl traveled to England the first time, Henry Sweet - in overestimation of the importance fluency in contemporary English might signify for the career of a late nineteenth-century German Anglicist - mentioned to Frederick Furnivall that the young academic "spoke such abominable English that he will never succeed in gaining a professorship."53 It is with these examples in mind that we may understand Felix Lindner's resigned admission, in volume 4 (1881) of Englische Studien, that German scholars' studies "written in a foreign language rarely contain substantive results."54

The Founding Editor

Eugen Kölbing studied Philosophy, Classical Philology, Comparative Literature, German(ic) Philology, and "New" Philology at the University of Leipzig, wrote his doctoral dissertation (1868) on the Nordic versions of the legend of Parzival under the supervision of Friedrich Karl Theodor Zarncke, an eminent Germanist, and finished his post-doctoral dissertation at the University of Breslau on the Nordic versions of the Partonopeus legend (1873).55 This early concentration on Nordic and Germanic philology is similar to that of many of those of his contemporaries, who would later go on to take positions in the new field of English Philology.

In his eulogy on Kölbing, his student Max Kaluza describes his teacher's predilection for the philological Textkritik as typical of the first generation of Anglicists. Completely given to "thoroughness" and "diligence," two key terms used by philologists to praise the true German scholar,
[h]e was incapable of ignoring an unclear, difficult textual passage. The more complex a passage appeared, the more it motivated him to find its true meaning, to consider all possible features leading to an explanation, until he would find either the correct solution and correct word or at least until he had diligently tested the various potential readings.56
This philological "thoroughness" which – according to Kaluza – especially shows in his teacher's abundant textual commentary, was also noted by Gregor Sarrazin, Kölbing's successor as chair of English Philology in Breslau. Sarrazin relates how Kölbing's own background and education might elucidate his own scholarly practices as well as his preferences for the kind of work favored for publication in Englische Studien:
Himself the son of a medical doctor, he loved to prepare and dissect literary products to get to their innermost secrets. The painstaking diligence of the linguist, who had been educated as a Classical philologist, joined forces with the exactitude of the natural scientist using a microscope for analysis. His ideal textual edition had to be one that not only found evidence on an author's dependence on his sources, but also that author's dependence on his predecessors and Zeitgeist, an edition that used this information to decide the intellectual property of an author and to learn about the poet from his poetry. The desire for this edition explains the comprehensive, often almost excessive critical apparatus and commentary he appended to his editions [...].57
And Richard Paul Wülcker, Kölbing's old nemesis, while praising the deceased colleague as a dedicated academic teacher and "born editor," similarly remarks on his predilection for making the historical text less important than the framing editorial paratexts, for indulging in, as Gaston Paris called them, "introductions étendues":
He had chosen the Middle English courtly romances and Byron's works as his specialty. In this he resembled [Julius] Zupitza, with whom he also shared some other personal characteristics. His textual commentary often gives the impression of being excessive, of being too much, which is especially visible in his edition of Byron.58
These descriptions remind readers of Julius Zupitza's practices and of Jacob Grimm's, especially when one keeps in mind Jacob Grimm's critical characterization of such Lachmannian Textkritik as "always robbing and deleting," as busying itself with minutiae ("Who would be so anxious to count all the battle days of the warriors in the Trojan war or the years of Kriemhild's life?") and as "ripping apart [...] that which was meant to be connected."59 It is this "hypercritical" attitude of German philologists which other academic traditions found difficult to accept and which produced schools of students who had memorized their teachers' "every line and every single word," but "who cannot produce one original thought."60 Foreign scholars warned their German colleagues to present "less of merely external facts" and more "about the psychological and literary elements," spend less of their "astounding diligence" and "great gravity" with "mere trifles."61 Of course, it is these very scientific features of German philology that would soon export so very efficiently to Britain, the United States, and many other academic systems building up the modern university. In the Anglo-Saxon tradition, however, they were usually made to coexist alongside practices stressing the reading and interpreting of literature as artistic, social, and cultural phenomena.62

While it is true that Kölbing well represents the German tradition of Textkritik, it should be mentioned that, unlike other founders of Anglistik (especially Julius Zupitza), he saw the necessity for scholars to extend their efforts beyond the Middle Ages. Kölbing's work on Shakespeare and Byron and his various lectures on postmedieval periods would lead the way to the institutional conventions in the twentieth-century, when German and Austrian Anglicists worked towards a decidedly generalist bent and dealt with pre- and post-Shakespearean texts, often dedicating their doctoral dissertation to one period, their Habilitation to the other.63 Kölbing's achievements in Romance philology, which Gaston Paris praised as an important part of his "œuvre considerable," also suggest his tendency to be more inclusive than some of his contemporaries.64

The Contributors

One of the goals of most scholars at the modern university was the founding of their own school, the "fathering" (an appropriate expression considering the German term, "Doktorvater") of a large number of "disciples" who would accept and propagate the lessons of their "leader" and "master."65 In fact, a little more than one third of all pages dealing with medievalia in Englische Studien between 1877 and 1899 originates from Kölbing's own students, especially doctoral candidates who were more than happy to have their mostly essay-length dissertations published in the first journal in English Philology. Other significant pools of participants originated from the personal scholarly contacts Kölbing established during his extended stays in Britain (for example, Walter W. Skeat; Henry Sweet; and Frederick James Furnivall), German scholars in Britain (for example, Karl Breul, who held various positions in Germanic Languages and Literatures at Oxford) and the Netherlands (Karl D. Bülbring, Professor of English Philology at the University of Groningen), and from the many school teachers with philological doctoral degrees who kept in touch with academia through the writing of book reviews (for example, John Koch, one of the most productive Chaucerians in the history of Chaucer studies).66 Kölbing also managed to attract some of the best-known medieval scholars of his day as regular contributors: Jakob Schipper, Professor of English Philology at the University of Vienna; Franz Heinrich (also: Francis Henry) Stratmann, the famous compiler of the first philological Middle English Dictionary; Carl Horstmann, one of F. J. Furnivall's most motivated editors for the Early English Text Society; Hermann Varnhagen, Professor of English Philology at the University of Erlangen; Gregor Sarrazin, who would be appointed chair in Breslau after Kölbing's death; Friedrich Kluge, Professor for Germanic Philology at the University of Freiburg and compiler of the widely known Etymologisches Wörterbuch der deutschen Sprache; Arnold Schröer, Professor of English Philology at the University of Freiburg; Julius Zupitza, Professor of English Philology at the University of Berlin; Ferdinand Holthausen, Professor of English Philology at the University of Giessen; and Karl Luick, Professor of English Philology at the University of Graz.67 Other famous colleagues, like the Anglicist Bernhard Ten Brink or the Celtologist Rudolf Thurneysen, contributed short research notes. And George Lyman Kittredge, the philologically minded Harvard scholar, and his student, F. N. Robinson (he appears as erroneously as "J. N. Robinson"), demonstrate with their essays how carefully the journal was received by the quickly growing (and philologizing) schools of English (medieval) studies in the United States.

Women scholars are almost completely missing from the pages of Englische Studien during the period under investigation. Lucy Toulmin Smith (1838-1911), whose magisterial expertise as a librarian at Harris Manchester College, Oxford, and editor of the York Mystery Plays and John Leland's Itinerary, granted her access as author, reviewer, and subject of reviews, is the only exception in the area of medieval studies between 1877 and 1899. The absence of women from the academic study in late nineteenth century Germany and Austria reflects, as Renate Haas has demonstrated, one aspect of the general upper middle class fear of democratization. Since women were establishing themselves more and more in the field of letters, they became serious rivals for male scholars, participated actively in the revolution of 1848, and insisted on better education for their sex. Unlike France and Switzerland, "Germany, and notably its leading state Prussia, was a particularly restrictive country, even more so than Austria, and the extraordinary prestige of German research helped to uphold academic exclusiveness." The conspciuous absence of women in Englische Studien can be seen as a result of the strong opposition of the "vast majority of German university professors" to admitting women to university studies. "Those who did not speak out directly against it, applied the tactics of indefinite delay."68


1 Gunta Haenicke, Zur Geschichte der Anglistik an deutschsprachigen Universitäten 1850-1925 (Augsburg: University of Augsburg, 1979); Thomas Finkenstaedt, Kleine Geschichte der Anglistik. Eine Einführung (Darmstadt: Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft, 1983); Gunta Haenicke and Thomas Finkenstaedt, Anglistenlexikon 1825-1990. Biographische und bibliographische Angaben zu 318 Anglisten (Augsburg: University of Augsburg, 1992); Thomas Finkenstaedt and Gertrud Scholtes, eds., Towards a History of English Studies in Europe (Augsburg: University of Augsburg, 1983).

2 Balz Engler and Renate Haas, eds., European English Studies: Contributions towards the History of a Discipline ([Leicester]: The European Society of the Study of English, 2000); Stephan Kohl, ed., Anglistik: Research Paradigms and Institutional Policies 1930-2000 (Trier: Wissenschaftlicher Verlag, 2006); Frank-Rutger Hausmann, Anglistik und Amerikanistik im 'Dritten Reich' (Frankfurt a. M.: Klostermann, 2003); 'Deutsche Geisteswissenschaft' im Zweiten Weltkrieg. Die 'Aktion Ritterbusch' (1940-1945) (Dresden: Dresden University Press, 1998).

3 I only know of one such investigation in English studies, Christoph Bode's enlightening essay on "Anglia 1933-45" (in Stephan Kohl, ed., Anglistik, pp. 113-33), but his focus on one twelve-year period somewhat undermines the long-term perspective the study of a journal may yield.

4 This research project was made possible by a University of Northern Iowa "Professional Development Assignment" which I was awarded for the fall semester of 2005.

5 Since I could not gain access to the actual brochure, I have to base this narrative on Kölbing's own version of events as published in his extensive review of the first edition of Anglia, in ESt 2 (1879), 264-74, here p. 264.

6 The original Jahrbuch had existed quite successfully from 1859 through 1871, and was revived as a "new series" ["neue Folge"] in 1874. However, the Leipzig publishing company Teubner discontinued publication after only two years due to a lack of interest within the academic community. On the institutional link of Anglistik with Romanistik at the German universities, see Finkenstaedt, Kleine Geschichte der Anglistik, pp. 56-125, and Helmut Christmann, "Romance Philology versus English Studies in the Nineteenth Century – Selected Aspects of a Vast Subject," in Towards a History of English Studies in Europe, pp. 283-302.

7 ESt 2 (1879), p. 264.

8 The establishing of the discipline is also the topic of a number of books reviewed in Englische Studien over the years. A good example of the general concerns in this area is Wilhelm Vietor's review of Bernhard Schmitz's Encyclopädie des philologischen Studiums der Neueren Sprachen, hauptsächlich der französischen und englischen," in ESt 2 (1879), 223-26.

9 Wülcker, in his review of ESt 1 (1877), in Anglia I (1878), p. 374.

10 ESt 2, (1879), 265.

11 The dangerous doubling of efforts seems to have been a real concern for Kölbing. In 1885, he stops F. Rosenthal from publishing his edition of Laurence Minot's poetry in Kölbing's book series, Altenglische Bibliothek, because another scholar, W. Scholle, had already published an edition in 1884. He explains his decision by stating that "English Philology is currently not established enough to tolerate competing editions without doing financial harm to the publishers" (this editorial note immediately follows Rosenthal's review of Scholle's Laurence Minot's Lieder mit grammatisch-metrischer Einleitung in ESt 8 (1885), 162-66).

12 Tom Shippey, translating Jacob Grimm's definition of "philology," in his The Road to Middle Earth (Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin, 1983).

13 Kölbing, "Zu Anglia I, p. 373ff.," ESt 1 (1877), 541-43.

14 See, for example, A. S. Napier, who studied and held university positions both in Britain and Germany, and whose essay, "On the Study of English at German Universities," Educational Review 2 (1892), 66, states that "Germany possesses two periodicals, the Anglia and the Englische Studien, devoted exclusively to English studies; and besides these the Archiv für das Studium der neueren Sprachen und Litteraturen treats of English philological and literary subjects in addition to German and Romance."

15 See the description on Anglia on the publisher's website: (accessed: July 26, 2006).

16 Anglia 22 (1899), 392.

17 This is Max Kaluza's post-hoc perspective in his eulogy on "Eugen Kölbing," in ESt 27 (1900), 163-94, here 172.

18 S. H., "Jacob Grimm on the Genius and Vocation of the English Language," Notes and Queries 7 (1853), 125-26 (S. H. translates from Grimm's Ueber den Ursprung der Sprache, 1851); Schopenhauer, Parerga and Paralipomena: Short Philosophical Essays, trans by E. F. J. Payne, 2 vols (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1974), II, p. 565.

19 Beowulf. Untersuchungen (Strassburg: Trübner, 1888); Chaucer's Sprache und Verskunst (Leipzig: Weigel, 1884).

20 Beowulf. Autotypes of the Unique Cotton MS. Vitellius A XV in the British Museum (London: Trübner, 1882); Cynewulf's Elene (Berlin: Weidmann, 1877); The Romance of Guy of Warwick (London: Trübner, 1883-1891); Specimens of all the accessable unprinted Manuscripts of the Canterbury Tales. The Doctor Pardoner Link, and the Pardoner's Prologue and Tale (London: Kegan Paul, Trench & Trübner, 1892).

21 Alois Brandl, Zwischen Inn und Themse. Lebensbeoachtungen eines Anglisten. Alt-Tirol-England-Berlin (Berlin: Grote, 1936), pp. 123-24.

22 Kölbing, Eugen. "Zur Textkritik des Ormulum," ESt 1 (1877), 1-16, here 1.

23 See Kölbing's comments, ESt 2 (1879), 266. See, however, Kölbing's "Alt- und Neuenglisch auf den deutschen Universitäten," ESt 20 (1895), 177-78, in which he attempts to defend Medieval English studies against various attacks from school teachers, who demand that more contemporary texts be taught at the German universities.

24 As early as ESt 6 (1882), in a review of Gustav Körting's Gedanken und Bemerkungen über das Studium der neueren Sprachen auf den deutschen Hochschulen (1882), Kölbing states that, while there simply is no space to add anything to the current, strongly medieval, university curricula in English philology, authors like Macaulay and Byron "may become, albeit in somewhat different ways, as worthy subjects of academic discussion as Beowulf and Chaucer" (p. 271).

25 On the "New Philology," see Ursula Schäfer, "Von Schreibern, Philologen und anderen Schurken. Bemerkungen zu New Philology und New Medievalism in the USA," Das Mittelalter 5 (2000), 69-81; Karl Stackmann, "Neue Philologie?" Modernes Mittelalter: Neue Bilder einer populären Epoche, ed. by Joachim Heinzle (Frankfurt a.M.: Insel, 1994), pp. 398-427, and Keith Busby, ed., Toward a Synthesis? Essays on the New Philology (Amsterdam: Rodopi, 1993). Perhaps the most pertinent discussion of the term and its meanings in the North American academy can be found in Jan Ziolkowski's essay collection, On Philology (University Park, PA: Pennsylvania State University Press, 1990).

26 One of the best cultural histories of "philology" is Heinz Schlaffer's Poesie und Wissen. Die Entstehung des ästhetischen Bewußtseins und der philologischen Erkenntnis (Frankfurt a.M.: Suhrkamp, 1990). Tom Shippey's chapter, "Lit. and Lang." (pp. 1-21) in The Road to Middle Earth best describes philology's narrowing path during the second half of the nineteenth century; in my own Chaucer and the Discourse of German Philology. A History of Reception and an Annotated Bibliography of Studies, 1793-1948 (Turnhout: Brepols, 2002), I have attempted a concise description of this process for the subfield of German Chaucer studies. On August Boeckh's famous lecture series, Enzyklopädie und Methodologie der gesamten philologischen Wissenschaften, (ed. by Ernst Bratuschek in 1877), and concept of "philology," see Axel Horstmann's "Antike Theoria und Moderne Wissenschaft. August Boeckh's Konzeption der Philologie (Frankfurt a.M.: Lang, 1992); Jacob Grimm's understanding of "philology" is best described by Ulrich Wyss, Die wilde Philologie. Jacob Grimm und der Historismus (München: Beck, 1979).

27 "Rev. of Englische Alexiuslegenden aus dem XIV. Und XV. Jahrhundert, ed. by J. Schipper (1877)," ESt 2 (1879), 489-92, here 489.

28 "Rede auf Karl Lachmann," in Kleinere Schriften, vol. 1: Reden und Abhandlungen, p. 150.

29 Arthur Kölbing, Eugen Kölbing's son, provided for a complete list of all these dissertations in ESt 27 (1900), pp. 214-17.

30 See, for example, the strategic placement of the adjectives "unparteiisch" ("impartial") "sachgerecht" ("appropriate to the subject") in Max Kaluza's eulogy on "Eugen Kölbing," ESt 27 (1900), 174.

31 Synthetisches Interpretieren (Munich: Nymphenburger Verlag, 1973), p. 23.

32 Grammars of Creation. Originating in the Gifford Lectures for 1990 (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2002), 262-63.

33 Although Child enthusiastically participated in the philological endeavors of his times, he appears to have done so in order for providing his students and readers with a better appreciation of literary aesthetics. Gamaliel Bradford, As God Made Them. Portraits of Some Nineteenth-Century Americans (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1929), pp. 223-24, cites him as saying, "When the charm of poetry goes [...] it seems best to me not to stay. If the world is nothing but Biology and Geology, let's get quickly to some place which is more than that." On Lowell's practice of reorienting European philological scholarship toward North American horizons of expectation, see Richard Utz, "Will It Do To Say Anything About Chaucer?", forthcoming in the January, 2007 issue of the North American Review.

34 Steiner, Grammars of Creation, pp. 309-10.

35 The term "slog" was first used to characterize nineteenth-century philology by Shippey, The Road to Middle Earth, p. 9.

36 The quotations are from Wülfing's review, ESt 19 (1894), 116-19, here 117. It should be mentioned that some of these dissertations shared Wülcker and E. Sievers as advisers. See, for example, Eugen Max Taubert's Der syntactische Gebrauch der Präpositionen in dem angelsächsischen Gedichte vom heiligen Andreas (Leipzig: Hoffmann, 1894).

37 "Eugen Kölbing," 170. Gaston Paris ("Chronique," Romania 28 (189[0]), 641), interestingly, remarks that all of Kölbing's publications demonstrate so many similar features that "[I]ls pourraient tous être intitulés comme son premier ouvrage (1876): Beiträge zur vergleichenden Geschichte der romantischen Poesie und der Prosa des Mittlelalters."

38 Shippey, The Road to Middle Earth, p. 9. A look at the reception of such "mechanical" work in the U.S., for example, demonstrates that the majority of German Anglicists distributed the same kinds of topics in fulfillment of the doctoral degree. The resulting dissertations were seen collected and bound under collective titles such as "Old English Grammatical Studies" by librarians (see, for example, Fordham University Library: PR1.O55).

39 ESt 8 (1885), 425. Engel waxes Biblical here (Matthew 23:24), using the word "Mückenseihen" to describe philological practices. Funnily, the King James version of the Bible uses "to strain at gnats" to translate this expression, but textual scholars (hence "philologists") insist that that expression is a printer's error and was intended to read "to strain out gnats." On this issue, see Edgar J. Goodspeed, Edgar J. The Translators to the Reader: Preface to the King James Version 1611 (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1935).

40 The Oldest English Texts (London: EETS, 1885), p. v-vi.

41 Chaucer. The Minor Poems (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1888), p. vii.

42 On Furnivall's dislike for "doctored editions" and his relationship with German scholars, see James Munro, ed., Frederick James Furnivall. A Volume of Personal Record (London: Oxford University Press, 1911), p. 14, Utz, Chaucer and the Discourse of German Philology, pp. 113-26, and Utz, "Enthusiast or Philologist? Professional Discourse and the Medievalism of Frederick James Furnivall," Studies in Medievalism 11 (2001), 189-211. W. Fick's "Zur Frage von der Authenticität der mittelenglischen Übersetzung des Romans von der Rose," ESt 9 (1886), 161-67, contains an illustrative discussion of the validity of the "rhyme test" to the discussions of the authenticity of the Romaunt of the Rose as a Chaucerian text.

43 Richard Utz, "When Dinosaurs Ruled the Earth: A Short History of German Chaucerphilologie in the Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Century," Philologie im Netz 21 (2002), 54-62, here 56.

44 See, for example, Felix Lindner's review of F. Hall's investigation "On the English adjectives in -able, with special reference to Reliable (1877)," in ESt 1 (1877), 503-505, here 503: "The author appears not to be cognizant of our German grammarians and their views on his topic, at least he does not mention them anywhere;" Eugen Kölbing's review of Richard Morris's Specimens of Early English, Part I. From 'Old English Homilies' to 'King Horn' (1882), in ESt 6 (1883), 92-93, here 92: "Let me stress one of the major lacunae of his book, namely the complete disregard for the achievements of German science in this area in the last ten years. [...] [T]he editor appears never to have consulted our journals;” and M. Heyne's review of T. Northcote Toller's Anglo-Saxon Dictionary, based on the Manuscript Collections of the late Joseph Bosworth (1882), in ESt 7 (1884), 131-35, here 135: "[...] he should make more progress by imitating what we Germans have done and by consulting the best German dictionaries [...]."

45 See, for example, Karl Körner's review of L. Botkine's Beowulf. Analyse historique et geographique (1876) in ESt 1 (1877), 495-96, here 496: "[F]ollowing [C. W. M.] Grein's easily available handbook, the study of Anglo-Saxon is beginning to gain ground even in the French provinces. We in Germany shall welcome any such attempt as the promise of a more historicist study of English language and literature;" and Eugen Kölbing's review of P. Belleza's Introduzione allo studio dei fonti Italiani di G. Chaucer e primi appunti sullo studio delle letterature straniere in generale (1895), in ESt 22 (1896), 288: "Those who might have expected to find in this short pamphlet any new scholarly information on Chaucer's sources will be disappointed. This is truly only an ‘introduction' and, unlike the thorough treatment of the topic one might expect from its title, an informal chat [...]." For more case studies of philological "othering" of their British counterparts, see Utz, Chaucer and the Discourse of German Philology, pp. 103-26.

46 See, for example Karl Körner's review of H. Dederich's Historische und geographische Studien zum angelsächsischen Beowulfliede (1877), in ESt 1 (1877), 481-95, here 495: "Mr. Dederich lacks a thorough philological education in the area of Anglo-Saxon studies, and his translations offer examples of this lacuna in almost every line. However, this thorough education is the indispensable precondition to any fruitful contribution to the field of specialty he has tread upon."

47 See Utz, Chaucer and the Discourse of German Philology, p. 63.

48 Thomas Honegger, ed., Authors, Heroes and Lovers. Essays on Medieval English Literature / Liebhaber, Helden und Autoren. Studien zur alt- und mittelenglischen Literatur und Sprache (Bern: Peter Lang, 2000). The bilingual title underlines H. Tristram's programmatic preface.

49 Schrödinger is quoted by Herbert Meschkowski, "Vorwort," Von Humboldt bis Einstein. Berlin als Weltzentrum der exakten Wissenschaften (Munich and Zurich: Piper, 1989), p. 9. The statement on the necessity of German for the academic study of English philology was made by Napier, "On the Study of English at German Universities," p. 68.

50 "The Crisis in English Studies," Harvard Magazine (September/October, 1982), p. 49.

51 Wilhelm Vietor, Einführung in das Studium der englischen Philologie mit Rücksicht auf die Anforderungen der Praxis (Marburg: Elwert, 1888), p. 43.

52 Renate Haas, "1848 and English Studies / German Philology," in European English Studies, pp. 293-311, here 306.

53 Brandl, Zwischen Inn und Themse, pp. 137-38.

54 "Rev. of An Account of Chaucer's Translation of the Romaunt of the Rose, by Axel Klint," ESt 4 (1881), 340-41, here 341.

55 The doctoral dissertation, Die nordische Parzivalsage und ihre Quelle, was published in Germania 14 (1869), 129-81; the topic of the Habilitation was Über die nordische Gestaltung der Partenopeus-Sage. Eine literarhistorische Abhandlung (Breslau, 1873).

56 "Eugen Kölbing," 189. I do not intend to write a detailed biography here. Kaluza's extended narrative appears to be the best informed, with input from other students, university archives, and Kölbing's own family. An additional source is Max Hippe's entry in the Allgemeine Deutsche Biographie 51 (1906), 329-31.

57 Chronik Universität Breslau, 14 (1900), 119-25, here 121-22.

58 Anglia Beiblatt 10 (1899), 225-28, here 227. Gaston Paris uses this expression in his "Chronique," Romania 28 (189[0]), 641.

59 "Rede auf Lachmann," p. 156-57.

60 The term "hypercritical" is used, for example, by James Geddie, Thomas the Rhymer and his Rhymes (Edinburgh: The Knox's House for the Rhymer Club, 1920), p. 4. The negative judgment of too many German doctoral students educated by Zupitza and other strict philologists appears in Arnold Schröer's memoir of the foundational days of his field, "Aus der Frühzeit der englischen Philologie. I. Persönliche Erinnerungen und Eindrücke," Germanisch Romanische Monatsschrift 13 (1925), 33-51, here 51.

61 So Franz de Backer in his review of Henry Lüdeke's Die Funktionen des Erzählers in Chaucer's epischer Dichtung (1928), Revue Belge de Philologie et d'Histoire 10 (1931), 240-41, who continues: "We did not believe that there could ever be a scholar sufficiently courageous to do this sort of thing. We suppose, however, that science is helped by it. For, after all, that gives us the conclusion - no, the proof mathematical, - that, generally speaking, the narrator interferes somewhat more in Chaucer's works than in those of his models and predecessors."

62 On this development, see Gerald Graff, Professing Literature. An Institutional History (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1987), chapters 4 through 8, and David Matthews, The Making of Middle English. 1765-1910 (Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press, 1999).

63 On Kölbing's publications on Shakespeare, see H. Jantzen's eulogy, "Eugen Kölbing," in Jahrbuch der deutschen Shakespeare Gesellschaft 36 (1900), 280-82.

64 "Chronique," Romania 28 (189[0]), 641.

65 The Biblical overtones are typical of the eulogies with which such devoted students would praise their teachers. See, for example, Gustav Tanger's eulogy on "Julius Zupitza" in the Jahrbuch der deutschen Shakespeare Gesellschaft 32 (1896), 296-301, where he remembers how honored he felt to be allowed to sit "among the twelve blessed members of [Zupitza's] Seminar" (297). The expressions "Führer" and "Meister" may be found in Max Kaluza's eulogy, "Eugen Kölbing," 193.

66 On Koch, see Richard Utz, "Editing Chaucer: John Koch and the Forgotten Tradition," 'And gladly wolde he lerne and gladly teche.' Papers on Language and Literature in Honour of Prof. Dr. Karl Heinz Göller, ed. W. Witalisz (Kraków: Jagiellonian University Press, 2001), pp. 17-26.

67 I characterize these scholars by the highest academic rank they held during the period under investigation.

68 "Lionesses Painting Lionesses? Chaucer's Women as Seen by Early Women Scholars and Academic Critics," in A Wyf Ther Was: Essays in Honour of Paule Mertens Fonck, ed. by Juliette Dor (Liège: Université de Liège, 1992), pp. 178-89, here pp. 180-81.