North American Scholar


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  • Date of Birth (YYYY-MM-DD): 1915-04-17
  • Born City: Breslau
  • Born State/Country: Germany
  • Parents: Richard, professor of philosophy at University of Breslau, and Gertrud Grunwald H.
  • Date of Death (YYYY-MM-DD): 2003-06-16
  • Death City: Haverford
  • Death State/Country: PA
  • Married: Gabriele Lina Schöpflich
  • Education:

    U. Munich, 1932-3; U. Zurich, 1933-34; U. Padua, 1934-36; D. Litt., U. Florence, 1936.    

  • Professional Experience:

    Fell., ACLS, 1942-43, 1944-5; Guggenheim fell., 1950-51; mem. Staff Inst. Studi Etruschi, 1936-38; lectr. to res. Asst. linguistics, Yale, 1939-42, 1945-46; lectr to instr. Phonetics & ling. Hartford Sem. Found. 1942-43, 1945-46; in charge Army specialized training in Hindustani, U. Pennsylvania, 1943-44; staff for serv. Instr U.S. Dept. State, 1946-47; assoc. prof. class lang. U. Texas, 1947-48; assoc. prof. linguistics, U. Pennsylvania, 1948-59; Prof. 1959-85; chair, 1963-70; Lectr. Hunter Coll. 1942-43; 1946; vis. Assoc prof. Georgetown U., 1952-53; 1954; sr. linguist, Deccan Coll. (India), 1955; Newberry Library fell., 1956; vis. Assoc. prof. Princeton, 1959-60; vis. Prof. Yale, 1961-62; Nat. Sci. Found. Sr. Fell., Ctr. Adv. Stud. Behav. Sci., 1962-63; mem. Cont. Lang. Comm, ACLS, 1963-70; Fulbright Lectr. Kiel, summer 1968; Herman Collitz Prof. Linguistic Soc. Am., 1955; pres. 1958; pres. American Oriental Soc. 1966-67

  • Publications:

     “Παν-compounds in early Greek,” Language 16 (1940) 183-188; “Campanian Inscriptions at Yale,” AJA (1941) 582-586; “The Epicharmian Title Λόγος και Λογίνα,” Language (1941) 247-49; “On Etruscan and Latin Month-Names,” AJP (1941) 199-206; “Three Inscriptions in the University Museum, Philadelphia,” with E.H. Dohan, AJA (1942) 532-537; “The Etruscan Language,” AJA (1943) 101; Spoken Hindustani (New York: Henry Holt, 1946);  “The Phonology of Etrusco-Roman Names,” TAPA 77 (1946) 319; “On Varro, De lingua latina V,15,” AJP (1947) 198-199; “Antevocalic u-diphthongs in Latin,” Language 25 (1949) 392-394; “A Note on Latin Prosody. Initial s Impure after Short Vowel,” TAPA 80 (1949) 271-280; “The Principal Step in Comparative Grammar,” Language 26 (1950) 357-364; “Laryngeals and s Movable,” Language 28 (1952) 182-185; “South Etruscan and Cypriote Writing,” AJA 56 (1952) 174; “Ῥα, δέδαε, δασύς and the Semivowels,” Language 29 (1953) 288-292; “Media, Neutrum und Zirkumflex,” Sprachgeschichte und Wortbedeutung. Festschrift A. Debrunner gewidmet von Schülern, Freunden und Kollegen (Bern: Francke, 1954) 209-212; Language Change and Linguistic Reconstruction (Chicago: U. of Chicago Press, 1960; repr. 1965); “Mycenaean Augments and the Language of Poetry,” Mycenaean studies. Proceedings of the third international Colloquium for Mycenaean Studies, ed. E.L. Bennett (Madison: Univ. of Wisconsin Pr., 1964) 179-182; “A Note on Overlength in Greek Fascicule,” Word 24 (1968) 252-54; “The Syllabaries and Etruscan Writing,” Congresso di micenologia 1967. Atti e memorie (Roma: Ed. dell'Ateneo, 1969) 410-416; Indo-European and Indo-Europeans. Papers presented at the Third Indo-European Conference at the University of Pennsylvania, 1966, ed. with G. Cardona & A. Senn (Philadelphia : Univ. of Pennsylvania Pr., 1970); “Indo-European *p in Celtic and the Claim for Relative Chronologies,” JIES 1 (1973) 324-29; “Su -nd- latino,” AGI 40 (1975) 55-58; The European Background of American Linguistics: Papers of the Third Golden Anniversary Symposium of the Linguistic Society of America (ed.) (Dodrecht: Foris Publications, 1979); “The Name of the Argolid,” Word 31 (1980) 105-107; “On the Impact of Vowel Syncope in Latin,” Italic and Romance. Linguistic Studies in Honor of Ernst Pulgram ed.  H.J. Izzo (Amsterdam: Benjamins, 1980) 53-57; “From Plain to Worse,” Sprachwissenschaftliche Forschungen. Festschrift für Johann Knobloch. Zum 65. Geburtstag am 5. Januar 1984 dargebracht von Freunden und Kollegen, ed. H.M. von Oelberg & Gernot Schmidt (Innsbruck : Inst. für Sprachwiss., 1985) 167-170; “Language, Meter, and Choice in Latin Word-initial Stop and Liquid,” Studia linguistica, diachronica et synchronica Werner Winter sexagenario anno MCMLXXXIII gratis animis ab eius collegis, amicis discipulisque oblata, ed. U. Pieper & G. Stickel (Berlin: de Gruyter, 1985) 377-383; “Some Considerations of Relative Chronology. The Greek Thematic Present,” O-o-pe-ro-si. Festschrift für Ernst Risch zum 75. Geburtstag ed. A. von Etter (Berlin: de Gruyter, 1986) 372-375; “Ἀιει and the Prehistory of Greek Noun Accentuation,” Studies in Memory of Warren Cowgill (1929-1985). Papers from the Fourth East Coast Indo-European Conference Cornell University, June 6-9, 1986 ed. Calvert Watkins (Berlin: de Gruyter; New York, 1987) 51-53; Biological Metaphor and Cladistic Classification: An Interdisciplinary Perspective, ed. with Linda F. Wiener (Philadelphia: U. of Pennsylvania Press, 1987); “A Note on Semivowel Behavior and its Implications for the Laryngeals,” Die Laryngaltheorie und die Rekonstruktion des indogermanischen Laut- und Formensystems, ed. Alfred von Bammesberger (Heidelberg : Winter, 1988) 199-211; “Syllabicity, Prosody, and Epic Formula,” AAPhA (1989) 63; “... F and Liquid,” CQ 40 (1990) 272-74; “The Prosody of the Epic Adonius and its Prehistory,” ICS 16 (1991) 1-15; “Silbengrenze und Vokalschwächung im Lateinischen,” Latein und Indogermanisch: Akten des Kolloquiums der Indogermanischen Gesellschaft, Salzburg, 23-26. September 1986, ed. Oswald von Panagl & Thomas Krisch (Innsbruck: Inst. für Sprach-Wiss. der Univ., 1992) 81-85; “Lipous' Androteta, Elision, and Prosody,” Nomodeiktes: Greek Studies in Honor of Martin Oswald, ed. Ralph M. Rosen & Joseph Farrell (Ann Arbor : University of Michigan Pr., 1993) 459-465; “Some Archaisms in the Iliad,” Historical, Indo-European, and Lexicographical Studies: A Festschrift for Ladislav Zgusta on the Occasion of His 70th Birthday, ed. Hans Henrich Hock (Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter, 1997) 79-85; “Εὖ, ἐύ and the Accent of Non-Thematic Neuters,” Mír curad: Studies in Honor of Calvert Watkins, ed. Jay H. Jasanoff, H. Craig Melchert and Lisi Oliver (Innsbruck: Institut für Sprachwissenschaft der Universität Innsbruck, 1998) 271-274; “Proclisis in Greek Studies,” in Baltic and Indo-European Linguistics: In Honor of William R. Schmalstieg, ed. by Philip Baldi, Pietro U. Dini (Amsterdam; Philadelphia: Benjamins, 2004) 67-73. Festschrift: Festschrift for Henry Hoenigswald: On the Occasion of his 70th Birthday, ed. George Cardona & Norman H. Zide (Tübingen: G. Narr, 1987).

  • Notes:

    Henry M. Hoenigswald was a member of the Ameri­can Philological Association since 1940, and served on its Committee on Ancient History and on an Ad Hoc Committee on Basic Research Tools. After coming to the United States as a victim of Nazi barbarism in 1939, he held teaching positions at Yale and at the University of Texas and worked for the Foreign Service Institute of the U.S. State Department in Washington. He joined the faculty of the University of Pennsylvania in 1948 and retired in 1985. As a member of the Department of Linguistics as well as Classical Studies, he regularly taught courses in Greek and Latin linguistics, through which he inspired and supervised many dissertations, particularly in metrics. He died peacefully of cancer at the age of 88. Trained in the European traditions prevalent at the Uni­versities of Munich, Zurich, Padua, and Florence, he quickly absorbed what he could learn from the theoreti­cal and synchronic approach that was coming into its own in American linguistics, and effected a marriage between the two, which turned out crucial for the path taken by linguistic studies thereafter. As his friend and colleague, Professor Anna Morpurgo Davies of Oxford University, put it in an obituary in The Independent of London, "his work, which impressively combined the approaches of the old world and the new world, gave a new dignity to historical linguistics.... Hoenigswald's main task became that of stating the principles, while not ne­glecting the concrete philological work." Prominent among the latter was his pioneering work on Etruscan. Hoenigswald's outstanding and numerous scholarly contributions were internationally recognized. Honors and awards were bestowed upon him by American as well as foreign academies and associations. Less in the pub­lic eye was his total dedication to the pursuit and preser­vation of academic freedom, and of the observance and adherence to civil rights. His integrity is attested by the many difficult arbitration cases over which he was asked to preside at the University of Pennsylvania. He spoke freely and forcefully against the inroads on freedom during the McCarthy period; he was a leading member of the American Civil Liberties Union and of Amnesty International; together with his wife Gabi, he was an enthusiastic supporter of the League of Women Voters and the Women's League for Peace and Freedom. What he has given us remains a monumentum aere perennius.

  • Sources:

    APA Newsletter (Oct. 2003) 32

  • Author: Martin Ostwald