Bernhard Alexander

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Bernhard Alexander (1850–1927) was a Hungarian writer of Jewish background, and a professor of philosophy and esthetics.

Life and career[edit]

Bernhard (Bernát) Alexander was born Alexander Márkus in Pest[1] on 13 April 1850, and educated in his native city, later attending German universities, where he pursued studies in the fields of philosophy, aesthetics and pedagogy. On his return to Hungary he was appointed to a teaching post in a Realschule (scientifically oriented high school) in Budapest, and in 1878 was admitted as a docent into the faculty of philosophy at the University of Budapest, where he became a full professor in 1895. From 1892, he also lectured on dramaturgy and esthetics at the National Theater Academy, and on the latter subject and on the history of civilization at the Francis Joseph Polytechnic. He was a corresponding member of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences and a member of the Kisfaludy Society, a major force in Hungarian literature.


Alexander's chief works are A philosophia történetének eszméje, tekintettel a történetre általában (The idea of the history of philosophy, in consideration of history in general, 1878); Kant. Élete, fejlődése és philosophiája (Life, development and philosophy, 1881); A XIX. század pesszimizmusa: Schopenhauer és Hartmann (The pessimism of the 19th century: Schopenhauer and Hartmann, Budapest, 1884, prize essay). Alexander, together with Professor Józef Bánóczi, later edited a seminal series of books on philosophers, the Filosofiai Irók Tára, for which he did translations and annotations of René Descartes, David Hume, and the Prolegomena to Immanuel Kant. Jointly with Bánóczi, he translated Kant's Critique of Pure Reason. He was an active writer on matters of education, editing the pedagogical journal Magyar Tanügy from 1882 to 1886.

Exile and death[edit]

However, Alexander became pariah in the nationalistic, anti-Semitic environment of post-1919 Hungary and spent four years abroad. He died in Budapest in 23 October 1927.


  1. ^ The cities of Buda and Pest and the town of Óbuda were merged as the city of Budapest in the fall of 1873.

 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainSinger, Isidore; et al., eds. (1901–1906). "article name needed". Jewish Encyclopedia. New York: Funk & Wagnalls Company.  and from the Hungarian Wikipedia page.