David Emanuel Daniel Europaeus
Humanist of the day

David Emanuel Daniel Europaeus

D.E.D. Europaeus was one of the leading Finnish folklorists of the nineteenth century. He carried out a total of seven field trips throughout Karelian Finland, during which he collected literally thousands of oral poems. What Europaeus was able to collect had a great influence on the second edition of the national epic, Kalevala, and constitutes one of the most important sources of research material in Finnish folklore studies. Europaeus was also a journalist, linguist and mediaevalist.

David Emanuel Daniel Europaeus

David Emanuel Daniel Europaeus
Born 1 December 1820, Sarvitaipale. Died 15 May 1884, St. Petersburg

Matriculant, 1844
Enrolled in Imperial Alexander University, 1856 (Finnish Language)

Seven field trips to regions in formerly Finnish Karelia: Aunus, Kainuu, Viena, Ingria, and Tver, 1845–1854
Language survey of the Kola Peninsula, 1856, Novgorod & Valkeajärvi, 1868
Seven field trips to mediaeval sites in the Aunus, Novgorod and Tver regions, 1872–1879

Founder, Editor, Suometar journal, 1847–1850
Founder, Kansakunnan lehti newspaper, 1863–1864
Miscellaneous employment

Silver medal, Russian Imperial Geographical Society, 1879

Photo: Museovirasto
Author: Tomas Sjöblom
Translated by John Calton

David Emanuel Daniel Europaeus was born December 1st, 1820 in Savitaipale, in the South Karelia region of Finland. His father, the local vicar Peter Adolf Europaeus, was a member of the intelligentsia, as well as a friend and assistant to H. G. Porthan. The younger Europaeus, too, was a part of the intellectual elite of his day, albeit his status was less straightforward than that of his father's.

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Folklore and folk customs were very dear to D.E.D. Europaeus, and he made their study his life’s work. His interest was probably aroused at home, since his father, a member of the clergy, had collected oral poetry before him; Europaeus tells of how he read about Finno-Ugric peoples and languages in his father’s library.

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