Project Leader The Development of Aspect in Middle Persian
Research Associate Zoroastrian Middle Persian: Digital Corpus and Dictionary

Thomas Jügel is interested in the development of languages, in particular, of Iranic languages. The Middle Iranic period is in his focus since it allows  to trace the linguistic development from Old to New Iranic. He has investigated questions of alignment, ergativity, case, pronominal systems and agreement as well as tense and aspect. Beside work on Old and Middle Iranic, he also explored various topics of New Iranic dialectology with special consideration of Kurdish.

Following his education in Berlin and Frankfurt am Main, he spent years abroad in Sweden, France and Japan, and is now working on the linguistic annotation of the Middle Persian corpus in the MPCD project.

Areas of Research

  • Historical & comparative linguistics
  • Ergativity & alignment
  • Tense & aspect
  • Language classification & dialectology
  • Linguistic minorities & language identity


  • MA (Magister Artium) in Iranic Studies, Turkic Studies and German Linguistics at the universities Freie Universität Berlin and Humboldt-Universität Berlin (1998–2004).
  • PhD in Comparative Linguistics at Goethe-Universität Frankfurt (2006–2013).

Completed Research Projects:

  • Ergativity in Old and Middle Iranic (PhD, 2006–2012)
  • Middle Persian Verbal Morphology at Goethe-Universität Frankfurt (2009–2010)
  • Digital Tools for Analysing Avestan at Goethe-Universität Frankfurt (LOEWE project 'Digital Humanities', 2011–2014)
  • Iranic Verbal Morphology at Goethe-Universität Frankfurt and Uppsala University in Sweden (2014–2015)
  • West Iranic Pronominal Systems at the UMR Mondes iranien et indien in Paris (Labex EFL project 'Contact et variation Morphosyntaxique dans l'aire West Asia: Contribution à une typologie' 2016–2017)
  • Sogdian Verbal System at Kyoto University in Japan (2018–2019)
  • Aspect in Middle Persian at Goethe-Universität Frankfurt (2019–2021)


  • PhD stipend by DFG (Graduiertenkolleg "Satzarten")
  • Postdoc stipend by Fritz-Thyssen-Stiftung
  • Postdoc stipend by JSPS (Japanese Society for the Promotion of Science) awarded by the Alexander-von-Humboldt-Stiftung
  • Project "Eigene Stelle" by DFG