Johann Martin Lappenberg - Encyclopedia

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JOHANN MARTIN LAPPENBERG (1794-1865), German historian, was born on the 30th of July 1794 at Hamburg, where his father, Valentin Anton Lappenberg (1759-1819), held an official position. He studied medicine, and afterwards history, at Edinburgh. He continued to study history in London, and at Berlin and Gottingen, graduating as doctor of laws at Gottingen in 1816. In 1820 he was sent by the Hamburg senate as resident minister to the Prussian court. In 1823 he became keeper of the Hamburg archives; an office in which he had the fullest opportunities for the laborious and critical research work upon which his reputation as an historian rests. He retained this post until 1863, when a serious affection of the eyes compelled him to resign. In 1850 he represented Hamburg in the German parliament at Frankfort, and his death took place at Hamburg on the 28th of November 1865. Lappenberg's most important work is his Geschichte von England, which deals with the history of England from the earliest times to 1154, and was published in two volumes at Hamburg in 1834-1837. It has been -translated into English by B. Thorpe as History of England under the Anglo-Saxon Kings (London 1845, and again 1881), and History of England under the Norman Kings (Oxford, 1857), and has been continued in three additional volumes from 1154 to 1509 by R. Pauli. His other works deal mainly with the history of Hamburg, and include Hamburgische Chroniken in Niederstichsischer Sprache (Hamburg, 1852-1861); Geschichtsquellen des Erzstiftes and der Stadt Bremen (Bremen, 1841); Hamburgisches Urkundenbuch (Hamburg, 1842); Urkundliche Geschichte des Hansischen Stahlhofes zu London (Hamburg, 1851); Hamburgische Rechtsalterthiimer (Hamburg, 1845); and Urkundliche Geschichte des Ursprunges der deutschen Hanse (Hamburg, 1830), a continuation of the work of G. F. Sartorius. For the Monumenta Germaniae historica he edited the Chronicon of Thietmar of Merseburg, the Gesta Hammenburgensis ecclesiae pontificum of Adam of Bremen and the Chronica Slavorum of Helmold, with its continuation by Arnold of Lubeck. Lappenberg, who was a member of numerous learned societies in Europe, wrote many other historical works.

See E. H. Meyer, Johann Martin Lappenberg (Hamburg, 1867); and R. Pauli in the Allgemeine deutsche Biographie, Band xvii. (Leipzig, 1883).

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