Lee M. Hollander

Lee Milton Hollander (November 8, 1880 October 19, 1972)[1][2][3] was an American scholar of Norse literature and mythology. He was a long-term faculty member and head of the Department of Germanic Studies at the University of Texas at Austin and published many translations of Old Norse texts.[4]

Life and career

Born in Baltimore, Maryland, Hollander received his primary and secondary education in Frankfurt and his B.A. (in Germanic philology with minors in comparative literature and English) and PhD (with a dissertation on prefixal -s in Germanic) from Johns Hopkins University.[1][4] He then spent two years traveling and studying in Scandinavia. On his return to the United States he taught German and Norwegian at the University of Michigan and then the University of Wisconsin and began to publish first translations and then scholarly articles. When World War I broke out, he lost his job like other faculty who taught German, and he worked for the university library maintaining a newspaper clippings file until being hired by the University of Texas in 1921. He spent the remainder of his teaching career there, 47 years, until his retirement in 1968.[1][4] He became chairman of the Department of Germanic Studies in 1929 and after his retirement was professor emeritus.[5]

Hollander's translation of Kierkegaard was the first into English. In his translations of Old Norse works, he placed high importance on preserving the style.[2] His complete works encompass 16 books and monographs, 22 translations, 88 articles, and 157 reviews.[2]

Hollander married Jean Wright Fisher in June 1912; they had three children. He played violin in both the University of Texas Symphony Orchestra and the Austin Symphony Orchestra, and participated in founding both. He was also a gardener and beekeeper. He was politically liberal and contributed to The Nation and volunteered at the Austin Human Rights Center helping students master English.[2] He died at an Austin hospital on October 19, 1972.[5][6]


Selected works

  • "Introduction". Speeches and new letters [of] Henrik Ibsen, tr. Arne Kildal, 1910.
  • (tr.) Selections from the Writings of Kierkegaard, 1923
  • (tr.) The Poetic Edda, 1928.
  • (tr.) Old Norse Poems: The most important non-skaldic verse not included in the Poetic Edda, 1936.
  • (tr.) The Skalds: A selection of their poems, 1945.
  • (tr.) The sagas of Kormák and the Sworn brothers, 1949.
  • A bibliography of Skaldic studies, 1950.
  • (tr.) Njál's saga, 1955.
  • (tr.) The saga of the Jómsvíkings, 1955.
  • (tr. with Paul Schach) Eyrbyggja saga, 1959.
  • (tr.) Heimskringla: History of the kings of Norway, by Snorri Sturluson, 1964.
  • (tr.) Víga-Glúm's saga and The story of Ögmund Dytt, 1972.


  1. "Lee M. Hollander: A Biographical Sketch", in Edgar C. Polomé, ed., Old Norse Literature and Mythology: A Symposium, Austin: University of Texas, 1969, OCLC 464177776, pp. 29193, online at Department of Germanic Studies, University of Texas (pdf)
  2. In Memoriam: Lee M. Hollander", The University of Texas at Austin (pdf)
  3. Dimension (1972) p. 656.
  4. "Professor Dies Here". The Austin American. October 20, 1972. p. 6. Retrieved December 7, 2018 via Newspapers.com.
  5. "Dr. Lee Hollander". The Austin American. October 20, 1972. p. 17. Retrieved December 7, 2018 via Newspapers.com.
  6. "Dr. L. Milton Hollander". Austin American-Statesman. October 21, 1972. p. 14. Retrieved December 7, 2018 via Newspapers.com.
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