(b Hamburg, 11 Feb. 1794; d Copenhagen, 15 July 1868).
German art historian. In 1822 he published a book on the van Eycks that made his reputation and led to his appointment as director of the recently founded Gemäldegalerie in Berlin in 1832. In 1844 he became the first holder of a university chair in art history when he was appointed professor at Berlin University. Widely travelled, with a great reputation as a connoisseur, Waagen is best remembered for his notes on works of art in public and private collections in various countries, which are a mine of information. Outstanding among them is Treasures of Art in Great Britain (3 vols., 1854), translated into English by Lady Eastlake; a supplementary volume entitled Galleries and Cabinets of Art in Great Britain was published in 1857.