German historian, epigrapher, and archeologist; born March 16, 1843, at Königsberg, Prussia. He studied philology and history at the universities of Königsberg and Bonn (Ph.D. 1863), and then spent two years in Italy. In 1869 he acquired the right of holding university lectures in Göttingen, where he was baptized. In 1872 he was called to the University of Prague as professor of ancient history, going thence to Vienna in 1875 as professor of ancient history, archeology, and epigraphy. Here he made valuable contributions to archeology, especially in connection with the numerous Roman inscriptions found in Austria, organizing together with Alexander Conze the Archeologic-Epigraphic Seminary at the University of Vienna, which has gained a wide reputation as a model for similar institutions.
In 1885 Hirschfeld went to Berlin University as professor of ancient history, which position he still (1903) holds. On the occasion of his sixtieth birthday a "Festschrift" was dedicated to him by his colleagues and pupils under the title "Beiträge zur Alten Geschichte und Griechisch-Römischen Altertumskunde" (Berlin, 1903).
Hirschfeld's works include: "De Indigitamentis et Devinctionibus Amatoriis apud Græcos Romanosque," 1863; "Untersuchungen auf dem Gebiete der Römischen Verwaltungsgeschichte," i., Berlin, 1877; "Lyon in der Kaiserzeit", Vienna, 1878; "Zur Geschichte des Lateinischen Rechtes" (in "Festschrift zur 50 Jährigen Gründungsfeier des Deutschen Archäologischen Instituts in Rom"), ib. 1879; "Gallische Studien," ib. 1883-84; "Inscriptiones Galliæ Narbonensis Latinæ" ("C. I. L." vol. xii.), ib. 1888; together with Zangenmeister, "Inscriptiones Trium Galliarum et Germaniarum Latinæ" ("C. I. L." vol. xiii.), ib. 1899; "Inscriptionum Orientis et IllyriciLatinæ Suppl." ("C. I. L." vol. iii., Supplement), ib. 1902. Besides these Hirschfeld has published numerous papers in the reports of the Prussian Academy of Sciences, of which he is a member; in the "Annali dell' Istituto Archeologico," etc.
Hirschfeld is associate editor of the "Abhandlungen des Archäologisch-Epigraphischen Seminars der Universität Wien," of the "Archäologisch-Epigraphische Mittheilungen aus Oesterreich," and of the "Ephemeris Epigraphica."
- Bibliographisches Jahrbuch der Deutschen Hochschulen;
- Frankfurter, Prof. Otto Hirschfeld, in Zeitschrift für die Oesterreichischen Gymnasien, 1903.