Gudmund Hatt
Professor Aage Gudmund Hatt (1 October 1884 - 27 January 1960) was a Danish archaeologist
Archaeology, or archeology , is the study of human society, primarily through the recovery and analysis of the material culture and environmental data that they have left behind, which includes artifacts, architecture, biofacts and cultural landscapes...

 and cultural geographer
Cultural geography
Cultural geography is a sub-field within human geography. Cultural geography is the study of cultural products and norms and their variations across and relations to spaces and places...

. He was a professor of cultural geography at the University of Copenhagen
University of Copenhagen
The University of Copenhagen is the oldest and largest university and research institution in Denmark. Founded in 1479, it has more than 37,000 students, the majority of whom are female , and more than 7,000 employees. The university has several campuses located in and around Copenhagen, with the...

 from 1929 through 1947. Also an ethnologist
Ethnology is the branch of anthropology that compares and analyzes the origins, distribution, technology, religion, language, and social structure of the ethnic, racial, and/or national divisions of humanity.-Scientific discipline:Compared to ethnography, the study of single groups through direct...

, he was the first person to systematically inventory cultural similarities and differences amongst northern peoples.

Early years

Hatt was born in Vildbjerg, Denmark and studied there through 1904. His father was the local teacher. In 1905, he went to the United States and lived among the Cherokee
The Cherokee are a Native American people historically settled in the Southeastern United States . Linguistically, they are part of the Iroquoian language family...

 Indians in Oklahoma
Oklahoma is a state located in the South Central region of the United States of America. With an estimated 3,751,351 residents as of the 2010 census and a land area of 68,667 square miles , Oklahoma is the 28th most populous and 20th-largest state...

 for a year which lead him to study ethnography at Harvard University
Harvard University
Harvard University is a private Ivy League university located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States, established in 1636 by the Massachusetts legislature. Harvard is the oldest institution of higher learning in the United States and the first corporation chartered in the country...

 from 1906-07. Returned to Denmark, he lectured on Native Americans in the United States
Native Americans in the United States
Native Americans in the United States are the indigenous peoples in North America within the boundaries of the present-day continental United States, parts of Alaska, and the island state of Hawaii. They are composed of numerous, distinct tribes, states, and ethnic groups, many of which survive as...

 and their former way of living, and began his studies under Hans Peder Steensby, ethnographer and Professor of Geography at the University of Copenhagen
University of Copenhagen
The University of Copenhagen is the oldest and largest university and research institution in Denmark. Founded in 1479, it has more than 37,000 students, the majority of whom are female , and more than 7,000 employees. The university has several campuses located in and around Copenhagen, with the...


In 1911, he married the painter and ethnographer Emilie Demant
Emilie Demant Hatt
Emilie Demant Hatt was a Danish artist, writer, and ethnographer...

, who had developed a keen interest in Sami people
Sami people
The Sami people, also spelled Sámi, or Saami, are the arctic indigenous people inhabiting Sápmi, which today encompasses parts of far northern Sweden, Norway, Finland, the Kola Peninsula of Russia, and the border area between south and middle Sweden and Norway. The Sámi are Europe’s northernmost...

. In the same year, he began doctoral studies of Arctic people, including an ethnographic study of Lapland
Lapland (region)
Lapland is a region in northern Fennoscandia, largely within the Arctic Circle. It streches across Norway, Sweden, Finland and the Kola Peninsula . On the North it is bounded by the Barents Sea, on the West by the Norwegian Sea and on the East by the White Sea...

. For two years, between 1912-1914, Hatt and Demant visited northern Sweden
Sweden , officially the Kingdom of Sweden , is a Nordic country on the Scandinavian Peninsula in Northern Europe. Sweden borders with Norway and Finland and is connected to Denmark by a bridge-tunnel across the Öresund....

 several times, collecting ethnographic materials for the National Museum of Denmark
National Museum of Denmark
The National Museum of Denmark in Copenhagen is Denmark’s largest museum of cultural history, comprising the histories of Danish and foreign cultures, alike. The museum's main domicile is located a short distance from Strøget at the center of Copenhagen. It contains exhibits from around the world,...

. This research formed the basis for his 1914 doctoral thesis, Arctic skin clothing in Eurasia and America when he noticed the cut in the clothing of Arctic peoples was based on whether they fished marine life or hunted in loose snow. From this, he theorized that two cultures developed in the Arctic
The Arctic is a region located at the northern-most part of the Earth. The Arctic consists of the Arctic Ocean and parts of Canada, Russia, Greenland, the United States, Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Iceland. The Arctic region consists of a vast, ice-covered ocean, surrounded by treeless permafrost...

, one that was land-locked and another that was coastal. In 1914, while a Fellow of The American-Scandinavian Foundation
The American-Scandinavian Foundation
The American-Scandinavian Foundation, is an American non-profit foundation dedicated to promoting international understanding through educational and cultural exchange between the United States and Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden...

, he studied at Columbia University
Columbia University
Columbia University in the City of New York is a private, Ivy League university in Manhattan, New York City. Columbia is the oldest institution of higher learning in the state of New York, the fifth oldest in the United States, and one of the country's nine Colonial Colleges founded before the...



In 1919, Hatt was hired to be the inspector at the National Museum of Denmark's Ethnography Department, and he remained at this civil service post for ten years. This position gave him the opportunity to participate in archaeological research at numerous settlement sites in central and western Jutland
Jutland , historically also called Cimbria, is the name of the peninsula that juts out in Northern Europe toward the rest of Scandinavia, forming the mainland part of Denmark. It has the North Sea to its west, Kattegat and Skagerrak to its north, the Baltic Sea to its east, and the Danish–German...

. Here, he was among the first in Danish archaeology who recognized that the ancient houses were not destroyed by fire which he recognized after excavating the areas between the houses, and not just the individual house sites, which was previously the custom. In 1922-23, he led an archaeological expedition to the Virgin Islands
Virgin Islands
The Virgin Islands are the western island group of the Leeward Islands, which are the northern part of the Lesser Antilles, which form the border between the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean...

 and Santo Domingo
Santo Domingo
Santo Domingo, known officially as Santo Domingo de Guzmán, is the capital and largest city in the Dominican Republic. Its metropolitan population was 2,084,852 in 2003, and estimated at 3,294,385 in 2010. The city is located on the Caribbean Sea, at the mouth of the Ozama River...

 in the Caribbean
The Caribbean is a crescent-shaped group of islands more than 2,000 miles long separating the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea, to the west and south, from the Atlantic Ocean, to the east and north...

. From 1923, Hatt was a lecturer in cultural geography at the University of Copenhagen, becoming a full professor in 1929.

Hatt became a public figure in the late 1930s through the early 1940s with his geopolitical analyses that communicated through radio, newspaper, books and journal articles. During the World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

Nazi Germany
Nazi Germany , also known as the Third Reich , but officially called German Reich from 1933 to 1943 and Greater German Reich from 26 June 1943 onward, is the name commonly used to refer to the state of Germany from 1933 to 1945, when it was a totalitarian dictatorship ruled by...

 occupation of Denmark
Occupation of Denmark
Nazi Germany's occupation of Denmark began with Operation Weserübung on 9 April 1940, and lasted until German forces withdrew at the end of World War II following their surrender to the Allies on 5 May 1945. Contrary to the situation in other countries under German occupation, most Danish...

, Hatt joined the Danish-German reconciliation, possibly because he saw Germany as a natural and inevitable bulwark against Russian communism. After Denmark's liberation, Hatt was brought before an official court, was found to be engaged in ‘dishonourable national conduct’ during the German occupation, and was dismissed from his university chair, albeit with full pension. He became professionally more isolated, however, Hatt continued to publish more of his work in archeology. His last research was on the Danish Iron Age
Iron Age
The Iron Age is the archaeological period generally occurring after the Bronze Age, marked by the prevalent use of iron. The early period of the age is characterized by the widespread use of iron or steel. The adoption of such material coincided with other changes in society, including differing...

 settlement in Fjand.

Hatt served on the Royal Danish Geographical Society
Royal Danish Geographical Society
Royal Danish Geographical Society is a scientific society aimed at furthering the knowledge of the Earth and its inhabitants and to disseminate the interest in the science of geography....

's council and was a member of the board of directors. He was a member of the American Ethnological Society
American Ethnological Society
The American Ethnological Society is the oldest professional anthropological association in the United States.- History of the American Ethnological Society :...

, American Anthropological Association
American Anthropological Association
The American Anthropological Association is a professional organization of scholars and practitioners in the field of anthropology. With 11,000 members, the Arlington, Virginia based association includes archaeologists, cultural anthropologists, biological anthropologists, linguistic...

, Royal Danish Academy of Sciences and Letters
Royal Danish Academy of Sciences and Letters
Royal Danish Academy of Sciences and Letters is a Danish non-governmental science Academy, founded 13 November 1742 by permission of the King Christian VI, as a historical Collegium Antiquitatum...

, Société Royale des Lettres de Lund, Dansk Selskab for Oldtida, La Société Royale des Antiquaires
An antiquarian or antiquary is an aficionado or student of antiquities or things of the past. More specifically, the term is used for those who study history with particular attention to ancient objects of art or science, archaeological and historic sites, or historic archives and manuscripts...

 du Nord, and Society des Americains de Paris. In 1915, he was awarded the Barnard
Barnard College
Barnard College is a private women's liberal arts college and a member of the Seven Sisters. Founded in 1889, Barnard has been affiliated with Columbia University since 1900. The campus stretches along Broadway between 116th and 120th Streets in the Morningside Heights neighborhood in the borough...

Medal Award.

Partial works

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