KUEHNOEL, kith'neil (KUINOL, KUINOELIUS), CHRISTIAN GOTTLIEB: German Protestant; b. at Leipsic Jan. 2, 1768; d. at Giessen Oct. 23, 1841. He was educated at the Thomas School in Leipsic, and at the University of Leipsic (Ph.D., 1787), where in 1788 he established himself as privat-docent for philosophy and philology. In his lectures, as well as in his publications, he occupied himself equally with Old- and New-Testament exegesis and with the exposition of Greek and Roman classics. In 1790 he became professor extraordinary of philosophy at Leipsic; in 1799 he was called to Giessen, where he remained until his death. In 1809 he became ordinary professor in the theological faculty there. His lectures suffered from philological dryness, but he exercised a sound and stimulating influence upon many of his hearers, in a scientific as well as practical direction, and his writings, in spite of their disagreeable diffuseness and pedantry were in high authority and acquired fame even beyond the borders of Germany. He wrote translations of Hosea (Leipsic, 1789), of the Messianic prophecies (1792), and of the Psalms (1799), with brief German notes; Geschichte des jüdischen Volks von Abraham bis auf Jerusalems Zerstörung (1791); a Latin commentary on Hosea (1792); Obsevationes ad Novum Testamentum ex libris apocryphis Veteris Testamenti (1794); Pericopæ evangelicæ (2 vols., 1796-97); and Specimen observationum in Psalmos (in Commentationes theologicæ (vol. iv., 1798). Of higher value are his commentaries on the New Testament, especially
BIBLIOGRAPHY: C. W. Justi and J. M. Hartmann, Hessische Denkwürdigkeiten, iv. 2, pp. 435 sqq., Marburg, 1805; H. E. Scriba, Biographisch-literärisches Lexikon, i 199-200, ii. 419, Darmstadt, 1831-43; ADB, xvii. 354-357.
Kuenen was one of the founders and editors of the Theologische Tijdschrift, was president of the Teyler Stichting, secretary of the Haagsche Genootschap tot Verdediging van den Christelijken Godsdienst, and president of the Koninklijke Akademie van Wetenschappen at Amsterdam. In the struggle between orthodoxy and the liberal movement, he was a leader of the modern school. In his De religione Christiana per continuas theologiæ commutationes sibi conslanti et incolumi he combated the orthodoxy which demanded belief in the contravention of natural law. On the other hand, he often preached moderation to the more ardent advocates of liberalism. Industrious from his youth, Kuenen was endowed with a remarkable memory, so that the volume, variety, and exactness of his learning were phenomenal. He was not a discoverer of truth, but was a scholar of great acumen, a critic of the first rank, whose importance can be explained by the combination of a pure character with a high intelligence. His personality was revealed both in his great modesty and in his stern devotion to duty, which led him to accept from opponents as well as from sympathetic fellow workers whatever he recognized as truth. In his writings he aimed to present simply the facts as he believed he had found them, while his readers were left to draw the conclusions.
Kuenen's most noteworthy production is his Historisch-Kritisch Onderzoek naar het onstaand en de verzameling van de Boeken des Ouden Verbonds (3 vols., Leyden, 1861-65; Eng. transl. of part, Historico-critical Inquiry into the Origin and Composition of the Hexateueh, London, 1886), an exhaustive study of the sources for the history of the people and religion of Israel preserved in the Old Testament. In this he adopts the hypothesis of Graf that the priest code is of later date than the other Pentateuchal documents, and defends and illustrates it with a wealth of learning and quiet moderation, and with great sobriety of judgment. He also contributed much of value to the knowledge of the structure of Hebrew poetry. Of less value is Kuenen's other principal work, De Godsdienst tot den ondergang van den Joodsehen staat (2 vols., Haarlem, 1869-1870; Eng. transl., Religion of Israel to the Fall of the Jewish State, London, 1873-75), which, in its sympathy with the recoil from a one-sided super-naturalism, fails to take account of the divine factor in history; e.g., when merely natural evolution is discerned in prophecy. This comes out especially in De Profeten en de profetie onder Israel (2 vols., Leyden, 1875; Eng, transl., Prophets and Prophecy in Israel, London, 1877). Another valuable contribution is Kuenen's Hibbert Lectures on National Religions and Universal Religions (London, 1882), which appeared also in Dutch, German, and French. He rendered great service by his collaboration with H. Oort and I. Hooykaas in the translation of the Old Testament from the Hebrew into Dutch in De Bijbel voor Jongelieden (8 vols., The Hague, 1871-78, new ed., 1900, Eng. transl. Bible for Learners, 6 vols., 1873-79), and in Kinderbijbel (2 vols., 1887-88; cf. E. Kautzsch in TSK, lxxiv., 1901, pp. 670-681). He wrote also: Het goed recht der modernen (Leyden, 1866); Friedrich Schleiermacher in de akademisehe godsdienstoefening (1868); and Les Origines du texte masoréthique de l'Ancien Testament (Paris, 1875), while his contributions to periodicals were exceedingly numerous and weighty, especially those to Nieuw en Oud and to the Theologische Tijdschrift.
BIBLIOGRAPHY: A complete list of Kuenen's works is given in Gesamelte Abhandlungen Kuenens, ed. K. Budde, pp. 501-511, Freiburg, 1894. For his life consult the sketches by P. H. Wicksteed, in JQR, v (1892), 571-605; C. H Toy, in New World, i (1892), 64-88; C. P. Tiele, in the "Year Book of the Amsterdam Academy of Sciences" for 1892; H. Oort, in ThT, 1892, pp. 113-116, and in De Gids, 1892; W. C. van Manen, in Protestantische Kirchenzeitung, 1892, passim; A. Réville, in Mannen van beteekenis, vol. xxi.. Haarlem, 1890. A valuable list of review articles is indicated in Richardson, Encyclopaedia, p. 606.
Calvin College. Last modified on 10/03/03. Contact the CCEL.