Hans Hirsch (historian)

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Hans Hirsch (born December 27, 1878 in Zwettl , † August 20, 1940 in Vienna ) was an Austrian historian and diplomat .

Live and act

Hans Hirsch left the grammar school in Wiener Neustadt in 1897 with the school leaving certificate. He then studied history at the University of Vienna . From 1899 to 1901 he completed the training course at the Institute for Austrian Historical Research with Wilhelm Bauer and Heinrich Srbik . He received his doctorate in Vienna in 1903 under Engelbert Mühlbacher . From 1903 to 1914 he was a permanent employee of the Monumenta Germaniae Historica and worked on the diplomas of the 12th century. He went to Berlin for a year and completed the name register of a Carolingian band. In 1908 he became a private lecturer in Vienna and in 1914 an associate professor. During the First World War he was an officer in the artillery.

In 1918 he became a full professor at the German University in Prague . There he particularly supported Josef Pfitzner . During this period, Hirsch was part of the Volkish camp that called for the university to be relocated to a German-speaking city in Czechoslovakia. He established himself as a folk researcher and specialist in “ Sudeten Germanism ”. He turned down a call to Berlin in 1924. In 1926 he returned to Vienna and took over the chair from Emil von Ottenthal . In 1929 he succeeded Oswald Redlich as head of the Austrian Institute for Historical Research . With Emil von Ottenthal he worked on the issue of Lothar III's documents . (Published in 1927). Then he continued work on the diplomas of Konrad III. away. From 1928 to 1935 he was a member of the central management of the Monumenta Germaniae Historica and head of the Vienna Diplomata department. In 1936 he was accepted as a corresponding member of the Prussian Academy of Sciences . In 1938, Hirsch was awarded an honorary doctorate from Prague University.

In his lectures he propagated his Greater German attitude. Hirsch was positive about the “ Anschluss of Austria ”, and his application for admission to the NSDAP , which was to accompany his rise to the position of prorector of the University of Vienna in 1939, “was not brought to a conclusion while the candidate was alive”. However, Hirsch stated in a personnel questionnaire from the University of Vienna that he was a supporting member of the SS . The initial euphoria quickly gave way to disillusionment - he had little in common with the National Socialists, and he was skeptical of the beginning of the Second World War . He also helped a student from a Jewish family to obtain his habilitation in January 1938, against the resistance of his colleagues . Hirsch died in Vienna in 1940 and was buried in the provost cemetery in his hometown of Zwettl.

His main focus was the founding of monasteries in the 11th and 12th centuries and in particular the Staufer diplomas. Hirsch's academic students included Heinrich Appelt , Heinrich Fichtenau , Wilfried Krallert , Gerhart B. Ladner , Josef Pfitzner , Hans Sturmberger , Hermann Wiesflecker and Paul Zinsmaier . He strongly encouraged Otto Brunner . Hirsch, for example, campaigned for Brunner to be brought back to the university and, in 1931, provided him with an extraordinary position in medieval and Austrian history. In 1940 Brunner succeeded him in his chair and in the institute as well as head of the Southeast German Research Association , which Hirsch had held since 1934.

After Hirsch, the Büdingergasse in Vienna- Währing was renamed Hans-Hirsch-Gasse until the end of the Nazi dictatorship in 1945, in 1955 the Donaufelder Friedhof was named after him as Hans-Hirsch-Park after it was rededicated as a park .


  • Essays on medieval document research. Reprographic reprint. Edited by Theodor Mayer with a foreword . Böhlau, Cologne et al. 1965.
  • Richard Wagner and the German Middle Ages (= Viennese scientific lectures and speeches. 4, ZDB -ID 987893-2 ). Ringbuchhandlung a.o., Vienna a.o. 1944.
  • Research on the history of the German Empire. Volume 1: Forgery of documents from the Regnum Arelatense. The Burgundian policy of Emperor Friedrich I. Rohrer, Vienna et al. 1937.
  • The high level of jurisdiction in the German Middle Ages (= sources and research from the field of history. Vol. 1, ZDB -ID 538567-2 ). Publishing house of the Society for the Promotion of German Science, Art and Literature in Böhmen, Prague 1922 (2nd, unchanged edition. Licensed edition. Photomechanical reprint. With an afterword by Theodor Mayer. Böhlau, Graz et al. 1958).
  • The real and fake deeds of foundation of the Banz Abbey. A contribution to the history of the Franconian monastery. Presented at the meeting on February 21, 1918 (= Academy of Sciences in Vienna. Philosophical-Historical Class. Meeting reports. Vol. 189, Abh. 1, ISSN  1012-487X ). Holder in commission, Vienna 1919.
  • The monastery immunity since the investiture dispute. Studies on the constitutional history of the German Empire and the German Church. Böhlau, Weimar 1913 (2nd, unchanged edition. Reprographic reprint. With an afterword to the reprint by Heinrich Büttner . Böhlau, Cologne et al. 1967).


Web links


  1. a b c Peter Autengruber : Hans-Hirsch-Park, named since 1955 after Hans Hirsch (* December 27, 1878, † August 20, 1940). In: Street names of Vienna since 1860 as “political places of remembrance” In: Forschungsprojektendbericht, Vienna 2013, pp. 300–301.
  2. ^ Membership page of Hirsch at the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences
  3. ^ Andreas Zajic: Hans Hirsch. In: Ingo Haar, Michael Fahlbusch (Hrsg.): Handbuch der Völkischen Wissenschaften. Munich 2008, pp. 244–246, here: p. 245.
  4. ^ Andreas H. Zajic: Hans Hirsch (1878-1940). Historian and science organizer between document and folk research. In: Karel Hruza (Ed.): Austrian Historians. CVs and careers 1900–1945. CVs and careers in Austria, Germany and Czechoslovakia in portraits of the history of science. Vienna et al. 2008, pp. 307-417, here: p. 395.
  5. ^ Hans-Henning Kortüm : Otto Brunner. In: Michael Fahlbusch , Ingo Haar , Alexander Pinwinkler (Hrsg.): Handbuch der Völkischen Wissenschaften. Actors, networks, research programs. With the assistance of David Hamann. 2nd completely revised and expanded edition. Vol. 1, Berlin 2017, pp. 93-104, here: p. 95.
  6. Südostdeutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (SOFG) in the online lexicon on the culture and history of Germans in Eastern Europe
  7. No more published.