He studied philology and theology in Berlin and Breslau.
On the whole, greater weight is due to the evidence from botanical sources than to that derived from philology, particularly since the discovery both of the wild almond and of a form like a wild peach in Afghanistan.
In 1843 he was appointed professor of philology at Kiel and director of the archaeological museum founded by himself in co-operation with Otto Jahn.
Current periodicals are Hollandsche revue, monthly; De Gids (1837), monthly; De nieuwe Gids (1886), monthly; De Architect, bi-monthly; Caecilia (for music); Tijdschrift voor Strafrecht; Museum, for philology (1893), monthly; Tijdschrift voor nederlandsche taal en letterkunde; Nederlandsch Archievenblad; De Paleograaf; Elseviers geillustreerd Maandschrift, monthly; Groot Nederland, monthly.
The strife, which reflects the controversy between the "analogists" and the "anomalists" in philology, continued long after their death.