Friedrich Max Müller (6 December 1823 – 28 October 1900), generally known as Max Müller, was a German-born philologist and Orientalist, who lived and studied in Britain for most of his life. He was one of the founders of the western academic field of Indian studies and the discipline of comparative religion. Muller wrote both scholarly and popular works on the subject of Indology and the Sacred Books of the East, a 50-volume set of English translations, was prepared under his direction. He also put forward and promoted the idea of a Turanian family of languages and Turanian people.
Friedrich Max Müller was born on 6 December 1823 in Dessau, the son of Wilhelm Müller, a lyric poet whose verse Franz Schubert had set to music in his song-cycles Die schöne Müllerin and Winterreise. His mother, Adelheid Müller (née von Basedow), was the eldest daughter of a prime minister of Anhalt-Dessau. Carl Maria von Weber was a godfather.
Müller was named after his mother's elder brother, Friedrich, and after the central character, Max, in Weber's opera Der Freischütz. Later in life, he adopted Max as a part of his surname, believing that the prevalence of Müller as a name made it indistinctive. However, the name is shown as "Maximilian" on several official documents (e.g. university register, marriage certificate), on some of his honours and in some other publications...
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