Hans Gross

Hans Gustav Adolf Gross (December 12, 1847, Graz - December 9, 1915, Graz) was an Austrian criminal jurist and an examining magistrate. He is believed to be the creator of the field of criminalistics and is to this day seen as the father of Criminal Investigation; he taught as a professor at the Chernivtsi University, Prague University and the University of Graz. He was also the father of the Austrian psychoanalyst Otto Gross. The release of his book Handbuch für Untersuchungsrichter, Polizeibeamte, Gendarmen (Handbook for Coroners, police officials, military policemen) in 1893, is marked as the birth of the field of criminalistics. The work combined in one system fields of knowledge that had not been previously integrated, such as psychology and science, and which could be successfully used against crime. Gross adapted some fields to the needs of criminal investigation, such as crime scene photography. In 1912, he founded the Institute of Criminalistics (later: Institute of Criminology), as part of the University of Graz' Law School, which was to be followed by many similar institutes all over the world. Green, Martin (1999). Otto Gross, Freudian Psychoanalyst, 1877-1920.

Personal details

Date of birth
December 12th, 1847
Date of death
December 9th, 1915 at age of 68
Place of death
Graz, Austria


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