Alexander Lernet-Holenia

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Lernet-Holenia, Alexander


Born Oct. 21, 1897, in Vienna. Austrian writer. Fought in World Wars I and II.

Lernet-Holenia’s lyric poetry interweaves neoclassicism with neoromanticism and shows the influence of R. M. Rilke, H. von Hofmannsthal, and S. George. His basic themes are love, death, and religion—for example, in the collections Pastorals (1921) and Canzone (1923). Lernet-Holenia’s plays include Dmitri (1926), a tragedy on a subject from Russian history, and comedies satirizing the mores of the aristocracy; An Austrian Comedy (1927) and A Spanish Comedy (1948). Such novels as Nocturnal Wedding (1930) and The Golden Study (1957) combine adventurist and erotic motifs with a criticism of bourgeois society. Other works include novels about historical figures (Prince Eugene, 1960) and artistic presentations of biographies of literary characters (The True Manon and The True Werther, 1959). Lernet-Holenia received the H. Kleist literary award (1926) and the Grosse Staatspreis (1961).


Götter und Menschen. Vienna, 1964.
Die weisse Dame. Vienna, 1965.
Theater. Vienna-Hamburg, 1965.


Langer, N. Dichter aus Österreich. Vienna [1956].
Spiel, N. “A. Lernet-Holenia: Zu seinem 60. Geburtstag.” Der Monat. 1957, vol. 10, book 109, pages 65–72.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.