Frederik Kortlandt

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Frederik Kortlandt
Frederik Kortlandt.jpg
Frits Kortlandt
Frederik Herman Henri

(1946-06-19) 19 June 1946 (age 75)
Academic background
Academic work
InstitutionsLeiden University
Main interestsIndo-European languages, historical linguistics

Frederik Herman Henri (Frits) Kortlandt (born 19 June 1946) is a Dutch former professor of descriptive and comparative linguistics at Leiden University in the Netherlands. He writes on Baltic and Slavic languages, the Indo-European languages in general, and Proto-Indo-European, though he has also published studies of languages in other language families. He has also studied ways to associate language families into super-groups such as controversial Indo-Uralic.


Kortlandt was born on 19 June 1946 in Utrecht.[1] Kortlandt, along with George van Driem and a few other colleagues, is one of the proponents of the Leiden School of linguistics, which describes language in terms of a meme or benign parasite.

Kortlandt holds five degrees from the University of Amsterdam:

He obtained his PhD under Carl Lodewijk Ebeling with a thesis titled: "Modelling the phoneme : new trends in East European phonemic theory".[2] Kortlandt was a professor of Slavic Languages at Leiden University between 1975 and 2011.[1]

Kortlandt has been a member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences since 1986[3] and is a 1997 Spinozapremie laureate.[4] In 2007, he composed a version of Schleicher's fable, a story written in a hypothetical, reconstructed Proto-Indo-European, which differs radically from all previous versions.


  1. ^ a b "Frederik Herman Henri Kortlandt (Frits)". Leiden University. Archived from the original on 23 July 2019.
  2. ^ a b "F.H.H. Kortlandt". University of Amsterdam. Archived from the original on 30 October 2020.
  3. ^ "Frits Kortlandt". Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences. Archived from the original on 5 August 2020.
  4. ^ "NWO Spinoza Prize 1997". Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research. 11 September 2014. Retrieved 30 January 2016.

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