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Gottfried Achenwall (20 October 1719 ‚Äď 1 May 1772) was a Germanmarker philosopher and statistician. He is counted among the inventors of statistics.

He was born in Elbing (ElblńÖgmarker ) in the Polish province of Royal Prussia. Beginning in 1738 he studied in the Jenamarker, Hallemarker, again Jena and Leipzigmarker. In the years 1743 to 1746 he worked as controller in Dresdenmarker. He was awarded his master's degree in 1746 by the philosophical faculty of Leipzig and went in the following to Marburgmarker to work as assistant professor lecturing history, statistics, natural and international law. In 1748 he was called to G√∂ttingenmarker to become extraordinary professor of philosophy, in 1753 extraordinary professor of law and regular professor of philosophy. In 1761 professor of natural law and politics, in 1762 doctor of both laws.

In 1765, Achenwall became court counsellor of the Royal British and the Electoral court of Hanover. With financial support from King George III he travelled to Switzerlandmarker and Francemarker in 1751 and to Hollandmarker and Englandmarker in 1759.


  • Abri√ü der neuen Staatswissenschaft der vornehmen Europ√§ischen Reiche und Republiken, 1749, in the following editions titled Staatsverfassung der Europ√§ischen Reiche im Grundrisse, 1752 ff.
  • (with Johann Stephan P√ľtter:) Naturrecht, 1750, 1753
  • Jus Naturae, 2 vol., 1755-56 ff, edition VII in 1781 with a preface from Johann Henrick Christian de Selchow.
  • Grunds√§tze der Europ√§ischen Geschichte, zur politischen Kenntnis der heutigen vornehmsten Staaten, 1754, 2nd edition 1759 titled Die Geschichte der heutigen vornehmsten Staaten im Grundrisse, 5th edition 1779
  • Entwurf der Europ√§ischen Staatsh√§ndel des 17. und 18. Jahrhunderts, 1756, 4th edition 1759
  • Staatsklugheit nach ihren ersten Grunds√§tzen, 1761, 4th edition 1759
  • Juris gentium Europaei practici primae lineae, 1775, unfinished.



  1. Friedrich Gottlob Leonhardi, Erdbeschreibung der preuiÔł£schen Monarchie, 1791, p. 757. Google Books
  2. Franciszek Paprocki, Domowe wiadomosci o wielkim xiestwie Litewskim z przylaczeniem historyi tegoŇľ narodu. Przedrukowane 1771, p. 82. Google Books
  3. Daniel Stone,A History of East Central Europe, University of Washington Press, 2001, p. 30, ISBN 0295980931 Google Books

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