Christian Molbech

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Christian Molbech, drawing by J.V. Gertner.

Christian Molbech (8 October 1783 – 23 June 1857) was a Danish historian, literary critic, writer, and editor of historical sources.

Christian Molbech was raised in Sorø. He graduated from Sorø Academy in 1802 and was employed at the Royal Danish Library in 1804. He was thus never formally trained as a historian. In 1829 he succeeded Knud Lyne Rahbek as professor of literature at the University of Copenhagen. He also functioned as the director of the Royal Danish Theatre from 1830 to 1842.

In 1839 he participated in the founding of the Danish Historical Society, and he was a founder of the Historisk Tidsskrift, which is the oldest still published scientific historical journal in the world.

Molbech also wrote various philological works, including The Danish Dictionary ("Dansk Ordbog" 1828–1833) and the "Danish Dialect Dictionary" ("Dansk Dialektleksikon 1833-1841).

Furthermore he wrote the "Historical Annals for Enlightenment and Education in the History of the North, specifically the History of Denmark" (3 volumes, 1845–1851), which was meant as a reference work for historians and which was groundbreaking in the establishment of the chronology of Danish history.

As a literary critic, he was infamous for his devastating reviews of the works of Hans Christian Andersen and Bernhard Severin Ingemann.