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Borrowed from German Festschrift, from Fest (celebration; festival) +‎ Schrift (writing (work of an author)).



festschrift (plural festschrifts or festschriften)

  1. A collection of articles, essays, etc., published together as a memorial or tribute to an academic or some other respected person. [from late 19th c.]
    Synonym: liber amicorum
    • 1890 April 1, “Gossip. [The International Medical Congress in Berlin.]”, in The Dental Record: A Monthly Journal of Dental Science, Art, and Literature. [], volume X, number 4, London; Manchester: Published by The Dental Manufacturing Company, Limited, [], OCLC 915049627, page 179:
      Great preparations are being made and no effort spared to render the meeting a success. [...] The City of Berlin will present a Festschrift.
    • 1970, P[eter] B. Dews, “Preface”, in P. B. Dews, editor, Festschrift for B. F. Skinner (Century Psychology series), New York, N.Y.: Appleton-Century-Crofts, →ISBN, page x; republished New York, N.Y.: Irvington Publishers, 1977, →ISBN, page x:
      So many people of so many different kinds have been influenced by [Burrhus Frederic] Skinner's work and writings; who should be invited to contribute to a Festschrift volume?
    • 1981, “General Editor’s Preface”, in Wilfred Cantwell Smith, On Understanding Islam: Selected Studies (Religion and Reason; 19), The Hague: Mouton Publishers, →ISBN, page v:
      At the present time a scholar of religion who lectures, reads papers and publishes will inevitably find his various products dispersed over a number of periodicals, Festschriften and other volumes, mostly published in different countries and often in different languages.
    • 1987, W[illiam] A[rthur] Speck, “Geoffrey Holmes: An Appreciation”, in Clyve Jones, editor, Britain in the First Age of Party 1680–1750: Essays Presented to Geoffrey Holmes, London; Ronceverte, W. Va.: The Hambledon Press, →ISBN, page xi:
      The result can be an incoherent festschrift, which only the press of the university to which the recipient's career had been dedicated would undertake to publish. Certainly commercial publishers regard such festschriften as drugs on the market.
    • 1991, David R. Maines, “Reflections, Framings, and Appreciations”, in David R. Maines, editor, Social Organization and Social Progress: Essays in Honor of Anselm Strauss, Hawthorne, N.Y.: Aldine de Gruyter, Walter de Gruyter, →ISBN, page 3:
      As much as they are tributes to scholars of extraordinary significance, festschrifts by their very nature are journeys taken together. Nurtured by previous journeys of the participants, they fuse the personal and professional, the sentimental and intellectual, which is exactly what gives any festschrift its special and distinctive character.
    • 1996, David Foster Wallace, “As of Year of the Depend Adult Undergarment”, in Infinite Jest: A Novel, New York, N.Y.; Boston, Mass.: Little, Brown and Company, →ISBN; republished London: Abacus, 2013, →ISBN, page 65:
      Incandenza's burial in Québec's L'Islet County was twice delayed by annular hyperfloration cycles. Cornell University Press announced plans for a festschrift.
    • 2012, Fred Karlsson, “Is there a Crisis in Generative Linguistics?”, in Diana Santos, Krister Lindén, and Wanjiku Ng’ang’a, editors, Shall We Play the Festschrift Game?: Essays on the Occasion of Lauri Carlson’s 60th Birthday, Berlin; Heidelberg: Springer-Verlag, DOI:10.1007/978-3-642-30773-7, →ISBN, page 4:
      Now that I have the privilege of publishing these remarks in Lauri Carlson's Festschrift, I want, by way of conclusion, to briefly address an issue he brought up in his contribution [...] to my Festschrift.
    • 2013, Willem Botha, “Preface”, in Willem Botha, Paul Mavoungou, and Dion Nkomo, editors, Festschrift Rufus H. Gouws, Stellenbosch, Western Cape: Sun Press, Sun Media, →ISBN, page xi:
      Many thanks are due to Prof. Ilse Feinauer for her support in conceptualising this festschrift in honour of Prof. Rufus Gouws, [...]
    • 2014, G. M. T. Emezue; Inge Kosch; Maurice Kangel, “Introduction”, in G. M. T. Emezue, Inge Kosch, and Maurice Kangel, editors, Justice and Human Dignity in Africa: Collection of Essays in Honour of Professor Austin Chukwu, [s.l.]: HPC Books, →ISBN, page 11:
      Traditional Festschrifts (or Festschriften) are designed by students and colleagues in honour of a person (usually soon to be or a retiree) they know. This action is very noble. However, Michael Taffart observes in "Gardens or Graveyards of a scholarship?" that the most common failings of Festschriften are lack of "themes, insufficient evidence of strong editorial hands and uneven quality throughout the collection." [...] It is no wonder then that in most festschrifts, people usually send their old, sometimes rejected papers, to be published in such collections.
    • 2014, G. N. Forester; M. J. Nicholls, “Preface”, in G. N. Forester and M. J. Nicholls, editors, Christine Brooke-Rose: Festschrift, volume 1, Singapore: Verbivoracious Press, →ISBN, page ix:
      The writers featured are an eclectic mix of critics, storytellers, ardent readers, academics, pasticheurs, homageurs, and people coerced to read the works of Christine Brooke-Rose for the sole purpose of contributing to this festschrift.

Usage notes[edit]

The word is often written as Festschrift (plural Festschriften) following the German orthography.

Alternative forms[edit]


See also[edit]

Further reading[edit]