The German-born philologist Louis Benloew (1818-1900) studied at Berlin, Leipzig and Gottingen before settling in France. Apercu general de la science comparative des langues (first published in 1858) is his best-kwn work. In this second edition of 1872, which includes his own further research on the Celtic languages, he uses the comparative study of grammar and vocabulary to identify relationships between languages and to classify them into families. Not all of his conclusions - especially those connecting the so-called Japhetic (i.e. Indo-European) family to the Semitic languages - are still accepted, but the ambitious scope of his work and the range of his world-wide comparisons provide a useful insight into the state of linguistic research in the mid-nineteenth century.