Research | Projects (A - Z) | F. A. Mann (1907-1991)

F. A. Mann (1907-1991)


Prof Gerhard Dannemann


In 2014 the Humboldt-Universität archive received 10,000 documents from the estate of the renowned German-British lawyer F. A. Mann. This project will analyse all the written documentation in order to retrace how F. A. Mann has coined legal theory and practice which is still in use today.

“Of all my learned friends, Francis Mann is the most learned of all. Long ago, as a young man, he came from Germany. Since then, he has become the head of an important firm of solicitors: and at the same time the exponent of a wealth of literature in the world of legal knowledge.”

This is what Lord Denning, one of the best known judges and lawyers of the 20th century, famously remarked about an alumnus and former academic staff member of Humboldt-Universität’s law faculty, who, together with his colleague and wife Lore Mann (née Ehrlich) fled racial persecution in Germany in 1933. Anne Kriken Mann, widow of their son David, has kindly donated some 10,000 personal documents to the Humboldt-Universität Archive. Professors Dannemann and Eisenberg are presently working on a grant application for a research project which aims to unlock the secrets from these documents, in particular letters which Francis Mann exchanged with the good and the great of his time. His correspondents include the majority of the senior judiciary of the UK, many internationally leading academics and legal practitioners, well-known business people and politicians, but also the political scientists Ernst Fraenkel and Friedrich Hayek, nobel laureate in economics. The documents have already been painstakingly listed by two student assistants, Daphne Brunkhorst and Alexander Malek, who have been kindly paid for by Anne Kriken Mann.