Bernard Sterling Comrie
Born23 May 1947
Academic background
Alma materUniversity of Cambridge
Academic work
InstitutionsUniversity of California, Santa Barbara
Main interestsLinguistic typology and linguistic universals

Bernard Sterling Comrie,[1] FBA (/ˈbɜːrnərd ˈkɒmr/; born 23 May 1947) is a British-born linguist. Comrie is a specialist in linguistic typology, linguistic universals and on Caucasian languages.

Early life and education

Comrie was born in Sunderland, England on 23 May 1947. He earned his undergraduate and doctoral degrees in Modern and Medieval Languages and Linguistics from the University of Cambridge,[2][3] where he also taught Russian and Linguistics until he moved to the Linguistics Department of the University of Southern California.[4]

Academic career

For 17 years he was professor at and director of the former Department of Linguistics at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany, combined with a post as Distinguished Professor of Linguistics at the University of California, Santa Barbara, where he returned full-time from 1 June 2015. He has also taught at the University of Southern California and the University of California, Los Angeles.[5]

Personal life

He married linguistics professor Akiko Kumahira in 1985.[6][7]


Comrie was elected a Fellow of the British Academy (FBA), the United Kingdom's national academy for the humanities and social sciences.[8] He became a foreign member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2000.[9] In September 2017, he was awarded the Neil and Saras Smith Medal for Linguistics by the British Academy.[10]

Selected works




  1. ^ "Bernard Comrie (Q705700)". Wikidata. Retrieved 30 October 2021.
  2. ^ "Bernard Comrie - Curriculum Vitae" (PDF). Max Planck Institute. Retrieved 21 November 2015.
  3. ^ "Professor Bernard Comrie FBA". The British Academy. Retrieved 28 February 2022.
  4. ^ "Bernard Comrie | Department of Linguistics - UC Santa Barbara".
  5. ^ "Bernard Comrie". University of California, Santa Barbara. Retrieved 21 November 2015.
  6. ^ State of California. Marriage Index, 1960-1985. Center for Health Statistics, California Department of Health Services, Sacramento, California.
  7. ^ "Akiko Comrie". Loyola Marymount University. Archived from the original on 22 November 2015. Retrieved 21 November 2015.
  8. ^ "Professor Bernard Comrie". The British Academy. Retrieved 15 October 2017.
  9. ^ "B.S. Comrie". Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences. Archived from the original on 29 January 2016. Retrieved 29 January 2016.
  10. ^ "Prize and medal winners 2017". The British Academy. Retrieved 15 October 2017.