(b Neubukow, Mecklenburg, Jan 6, 1822; d Naples, Dec 26, 1890).
American archaeologist and businessman of German birth. The death of his mother in 1831 and accusations of embezzlement against his father (a pastor) in 1833 disrupted his schooling. A consequent sense of under-achievement propelled him to Amsterdam, where he studied bookkeeping and foreign languages. In 1844 he secured a position with the merchant bankers B. H. Schröder & Co., and in 1846 he was posted as the firm’s agent to St Petersburg, where he established himself as a commodity dealer and spent the next 20 years. There followed a short period in America as a banker of doubtful integrity during the California gold-rush (1850–51), a marriage (1852) and three children, travels (1858–9) and a world tour resulting in an undistinguished travel diary, La Chine et le Japon (Paris, 1867).
By 1866 Schliemann was 44 and restless; leaving his wife and family he moved to Paris, ostensibly to study at the Sorbonne. In ...