Origins of Old Germanic Studies in the Low Countries
This volume deals with the study of Old Germanic languages in the Low Countries, in the seventeenth century. The work of the philologist and lawyer Jan van Vliet (1622-1666) has been taken as a starting point for a discussion of the intellectual background and philological methodology of seventeenth-century investigations into the earliest recorded forms of the Germanic languages.
Van Vliet's activities provide an extraordinary example of the earliest attempts to approach Old Germanic languages from a comparative point of view. The cosmopolitan tradition of philological studies in the Dutch Republic as well as Van Vliet’s great admiration of Francis Junius (1590–1677), the founding-father of Germanic philology, formed the basis for his ideas about vernacular languages. His work allows us a unique insight in the pioneering seventeenth-century studies in Germanic philology.