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Biographical/Historical Information

The poet and playwright Ernst Lissauer was born in Berlin on December 10, 1882, the son of Hugo Lissauer (1843-1910), a city counselor for Charlottenburg and one of the founders of the Berliner Reformgemeinde. Ernst Lissauer’s first collection of poetry, “Der Acker” was published in 1907. In 1914 at the beginning of World War I, he wrote “Hassgesang gegen England” (‘Song of Hate against England’), the poem that brought him most fame. Lissauer served as a volunteer in the war and edited the German sections of the Feldwochenschrift, which was published in German and Hungarian from 1917 to 1918. At the end of the war he was transferred to Berlin, where he worked in the media department of the Ministry of War. As a playwright, his biggest success was the comedy “Gewalt”, which was performed for the first time in Frankfurt in 1924. In 1923, Lissauer moved to Vienna, where he stayed for the rest of his life. His last collection of poems was published in Vienna in 1936. He died on December 10, 1937 and is buried on the Jewish cemetery in Vienna.

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Ernst Lissauer, Leo Baeck Institute, F 2617.