Georg Wissowa

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Georg Wissowa (1859-1931)

Georg Otto August Wissowa (17 June 1859 – 11 May 1931) was a German classical philologist born in Neudorf, near Breslau.

Wissowa studied at the University of Breslau, later serving as a professor at the University of Marburg (from 1886), and at the University of Halle (from 1895).

He is remembered today for re-edition of Realencyclopädie der Classischen Altertumswissenschaft, an encyclopedia of classical studies initially started by August Friedrich Pauly (1796–1845) in 1839. In 1890, Wissowa began the new edition, an ambitious project that he anticipated would take ten years to finish. However, it wouldn't be until the 1970s that the last of its 83 volumes was published.

He was the author of a significant work on ancient Roman religion, titled Religion und Kultus der Römer (1902), a book in which he explored the development of Roman religion, and in the process, provides a comprehensive description of its deities and religious practices. Wissowa also published a revision of Ludwig Friedländer's moral history of Rome called Sittengeschichte Roms, worked on Wilhelm Heinrich Roscher's encyclopedia of Greek and Roman mythology, Ausführlichem Lexikon der griechischen und römischen Mythologie and edited the second edition of Joachim Marquardt's Römische Staatsverwaltung, vol. iii. (1885).