Hermann Georg Fiedler

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Hermann Georg Fiedler, c.1904.

Hermann Georg Fiedler (1862–1945), was a German scholar, who became Taylor Professor of the German Language and Literature at the University of Oxford (1907–37).[1] He was previously lecturer in German at Mason College (which later became Birmingham University).[2]


H.G. Fiedler was born in 1862 in Zittau, Germany.[3] In July 1888, he received a doctorate from the University of Leipzig in German philology and literature under Friedrich Zarncke. In October 1888, Zarncke helped in Fiedler becoming a lecturer in German at Queen Margaret College and the University of Glasgow until 1890.[4]

In October 1890, Fiedler was then appointed Professor of German at Mason College. Fiedler was instrumental in the setting up of University of Birmingham.[5] He was a member of the initial committee of nine set up in 1894 by Robert Heath.[2]

In July 1907, Fiedler was appointed the first Taylor Professor of the German Language and Literature at the University of Oxford[6] and a Fellow of The Queen's College.[4] In 1911, he became a British citizen and he was a tutor to the Prince of Wales (later King Edward VIII) between 1912–14.[6] However, in 1915 during World War I, he felt obliged to offer his resignation, but this was not accepted. He continued to run the German department at Oxford University during World War I.

In 1926, Fiedler was appointed secretary to the curators of the Taylor Institution in central Oxford.[3][7] He improved the Taylor Institution Library and was in charge of the extension of the Taylor Institution, which was opened in 1932 by the Edward, Prince of Wales. In May 1931, he met the physicist Albert Einstein, a fellow German speaker, during a visit by Einstein to Oxford.[8] He retired in 1937.

H.G. Fiedler authored a number of books related to German studies during his career.[9]


In 1899, Hermann Fiedler married his former pupil Ethel Mary (1870/71–1933, a daughter of Charles Harding), who wrote a diary covering their marriage between 1899–1922.[3] They had two daughters, Herma (born 1902) and Beryl (born 1913). Herma died on 2 May 1920, which caused serious depression in Ethel for the rest of her life.


  1. ^ "Hermann Georg Fiedler". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Oxford University Press. Retrieved 2015-02-04. 
  2. ^ a b "Hermann Georg Fiedler". UK: The National Archives. Retrieved 2010-08-04. Hermann Georg Fiedler (1862–1945) was lecturer in German at Mason College, Birmingham (a predecessor college of the University of Birmingham), with a doctorate from Leipzig. ... 
  3. ^ a b c Fiedler, Ethel Mary. "Main Incidents in the married Life of Hermann Georg Fiedler and Ethel Mary Fiedler". Archives Hub. UK: Jisc. Retrieved 3 January 2016. 
  4. ^ a b "Hermann Georg Fiedler". International Story. UK: University of Glasgow. Retrieved 3 January 2016. 
  5. ^ "Papers relating to Hermann Georg Fiedler". Cadbury Research Library Special Collections. UK: University of Birmingham. 1888–1914. Retrieved 4 January 2016. [permanent dead link]
  6. ^ a b Fiedler, Hermann Georg (1945). "Papers of Hermann Georg Fiedler (19th century–1945)". University of Oxford, Taylor Institution Library, UK: Archives Hub. Retrieved 4 January 2016. 
  7. ^ "History of the Taylor Institution Library and its Collections". Taylor Institution Library: A Bodeian Libraries weblog. UK: Bodleian Library, University of Oxford. Retrieved 4 January 2016. 
  8. ^ Eisinger, Josef (2011). "Berlin and Oxford (1931)". Einstein on the Road. Prometheus Books. ISBN 978-1616144609. 
  9. ^ "Hermann Georg Fiedler". Amazon.com. Retrieved 3 January 2016.