Leah Goldberg

related topics
{son, year, death}
{language, word, form}
{work, book, publish}
{theory, work, human}
{day, year, event}
{style, bgcolor, rowspan}
{country, population, people}
{god, call, give}
{group, member, jewish}

Leah Goldberg (Hebrew/Yiddish: לאה גולדברג; May 29, 1911, Königsberg – January 15, 1970, Jerusalem) was a prolific Hebrew poet, author, playwright, literary translator, and researcher of Hebrew literature. Born in a Jewish Lithuanian family, her writings are classics of Israeli literature.



Born in Königsberg, Germany[1] Goldberg studied in Lithuania and Germany, specialising in philosophy and Semitic languages. She received a Ph.D. in Semitic languages from the University of Bonn in 1933, before emigrating to the British Mandate of Palestine (now Israel) in 1935.

Goldberg settled in Tel Aviv where she worked as a literary adviser to Habimah, the national theater, and an editor for the publishing company Sifriyat HaPoalim ("Workers' Library"). In 1954, she became a lecturer in literature at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. From 1963, she headed the university's Department of Comparative Literature.

With exemplary knowledge of seven languages, Goldberg translated numerous foreign literary works into Hebrew. Her translations from Russian and Italian are of particular note, including Tolstoy's epic novel War and Peace - her magnum opus, yet her breadth also included completing translations of Chekhov’s Stories (1945), selected poems by Petrarch (1953), Ibsen’s Peer Gynt (1958) as well as many other works including reference books and works for children.

Aside an extensive repertoire of translation, Goldberg was also a prolific writer in Hebrew of poetry, drama, and children's literature. Goldberg's books for children, among them "A Flat for Rent" (דירה להשכיר Dira Lehaskir) have become classics within Modern Hebrew children's prose.

Lea Goldberg never married, and lived with her mother both in Tel Aviv and later Jerusalem. Goldberg died in 1970 of lung cancer, due to her copious smoking habit.

Literary Style & Influences

Goldberg had a modernist literary style that may superficially look uncomplicated. She writes in a poem about her own style that "lucid and transparent / are my images". Although she sometimes chose to write poems that do not rhyme (especially in her later period), she always respected questions of rhythm; moreover, in her "antique" works (e.g., the set of love poems The Sonnets of Therese du Meun, a false document about the love-longings of a married French noblewoman for a young tutor), Goldberg adopted complex rhyming schemes. A very elaborate style that she sometimes used was the thirteen-line sonnet.

Full article ▸

related documents
William Barnes
Liu Song Dynasty
Sir Henry Rawlinson, 1st Baronet
Deborah Cavendish, Duchess of Devonshire
Bliss Carman
Matthias Claudius
Carl Wilhelm Siemens
Christian Morgenstern
Richard Baker (chronicler)
List of Aragonese monarchs
Humbert I of Savoy
Verner von Heidenstam
Memoirs of a Fox-Hunting Man
A Farewell to Arms
Charles II, Duke of Savoy
David II of Scotland
Anya Seton
Louis IV of France
Baillie of Jerviswood
Indulf of Scotland
Alfonso XI of Castile
Jean-Louis Guez de Balzac
Antonia Major
Julius von Payer
Henry I, Duke of Brabant
Marcus Aemilius Lepidus (triumvir)
Ptolemy VI Philometor