Heinrich Nissen studied in Kiel and Berlin, and has been heavily influenced by August Boeckh and Theodor Mommsen. After completing his doctorate, he traveled to Italy 1863-1866. The research of this period culminated in Nissen's major work, the two-volume Italic Regional Studies ( 1883-1902 ). Subsequently, Nissen 1867 Habilitation in Bonn. Among his earliest pupils Ulrich was one of Wilamowitz- Moellendorff, who later wrote about Nissen in recognition: " Finally, the historian Nissen, rhetorically eloquent, witty, self-conscious, others on the distance that separated the students from him more cautious than that. The only historic College which I heard was his history of the Western Greeks; it captivated when listening, I have well nachgeschrieben. "
1869 went Nissen as an adjunct professor at the University of Marburg, where he was appointed in 1870 to full professor. In 1877 he went as Professor of Ancient History in Göttingen; However, he moved the following year to Strasbourg. In 1884 he was appointed as the successor to Arnold Schaefer at the University of Bonn. There he taught differently than its predecessor solely Ancient History. The first representative of his field research he had conducted in Bonn for epigraphy - basis were his studies during his years in Italy - and was dedicated to the archeology of the Roman Provinces. He was one of the founders of the Reichs- Limes- Commission. Since 1890, Nissen represented the University of Bonn in the Prussian mansion.
In the fall of 1911 Nissen became Professor Emeritus, and was succeeded by Ulrich Wilcken. Shortly after Nissen died and was buried in the Poppelsdorfer mountain cemetery in a grave of honor.
Writings (selection )
- Pompeii, Lüderitz, Berlin 1867
- Pompeian studies. Leipzig 1877
- Italic Geography: Vol 1 country and people, Berlin 1883; Vol 2: The City (2 sub- volumes), Berlin 1902