The Library of Eugen Mittwoch (1876–1942)
Eugen Mittwoch (1876–1942) was one of the most prominent representatives of German Orientalism during the first decades of the twentieth century. Trained as an Arabist and Semitist, Mittwoch was at the same time a specialist of Ethiopian studies, and he was part of the circle of Carl Heinrich Becker (1876–1933) who initiated a new direction for Islamic studies in Orientalism. At the same time, Mittwoch was also engaged in the study of the Geniza and he worked on topics relevant also to the Science of Judaism (“Wissenschaft des Judentums”). Mittwoch’s academic career ended abruptly when he was dismissed from his professorial position at the end of 1935 and eventually forced into exile in 1938. As a result, only portions of his professional and personal Nachlass have come to us. The present study provides a first overview of the available sources for a reconstruction of his biography and it discusses in some depth those that inform us of the fate of his library, in 1939, when his family joined him in London, as well as after his death in 1942.