Detlev Blanke, German Esperantist, Died at 75

Detlev Blanke was born on May 30, 1941, and died on August 20, 2016.

He was an interlinguistics lecturer at Humboldt University of Berlin.

Blanke was one of Germany’s most active Esperanto philologists and was from 1991 to 2016 both the chair of the Gesellschaft für Interlinguistik (“Interlinguistics Society”) and the editor of its newsletter, Interlinguistische Informationen.

Detlev and his wife Wera Blanke were especially interested in the evolution of language — particularly in the development of terminology for the planned language Esperanto and in questions of sociolinguistics.

He has made a keen study of Eugen Wüster’s work towards common international terminology and towards international standardization.

After university studies, Detlev worked as a teacher of German and geography.

Detlev earned a doctorate from Humboldt University of Berlin in 1976 with his dissertation on comparative word construction of Esperanto and German. In 1985 he earned a second doctorate from Humboldt on constructed languages.

(In his country East Germany such a second degree was known as “dissertation B”, corresponding to the highest academic qualification of “habilitation” awarded to full professors in many European countries.)

During 1988 the university appointed him “Honorary Lecturer of Interlinguistics.”

Detlev Blanke passed away at 75 years old.