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Today’s Memory – Dimitrie Cantemir

11 - DimCantem

Dimitrie Cantemir became a member of the Royal Academy of Berlin

11 July 1714


Dimitrie Cantemir (1673–1723) was a Moldavian soldier, statesman, and man of letters. He was twice Prince of Moldavia (in March–April 1693 and in 1710–1711) and later adviser of Peter the Great of Russia. He was also a prolific man of letters – philosopher, historian, composer, musicologist, linguist, ethnographer, geographer.

Versed in 11 languages, Cantemir wrote prolifically on Romanian and Ottoman history; his Historia Incrementorum atque Decrementorum aulae Othomanicae (History of the Growth and Decay of the Othman Empire, 1716) earned him a reputation throughout Europe. A keen student of Turkish culture and religion, he devised a system of notation for Turkish music and wrote a comprehensive synthesis of Islamic religious beliefs and practices.

17 th Century Ottoman Music by Dimitri Cantemiroglu (1673)

His other works include the first critical history of Moldavia-Walachia and the first comprehensive descriptions of Moldavia’s geography, ethnography, and economy. He was elected a member of the Berlin Academy for his scientific work in 1714, and he also helped found the Academy of Sciences at St. Petersburg.

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Dimitrie Cantemir – The Book of the Science of Music Hespèrion XXI, Conduced by Jordi Savall


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