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Professor Edward Timms (1937-2018)

  • 23 November 2018

The College announces with great sadness the death of Professor Edward Timms OBE FBA, Life Fellow of Caius and Research Professor at the University of Sussex.

Edward or ‘Ted’, as he was usually known, was both an undergraduate and a PhD student at Caius, between 1956 and 1963, when he left to take up an Assistant Lectureship at Sussex. He came back to a Fellowship at Caius in 1965 and served as University Lecturer until 1991, when he returned to Sussex to take up a professorship in the School of European Studies and to found the Centre for German-Jewish Studies, which he directed until 2003. He was recognised as one of the world’s leading experts on twentieth-century Austrian culture. Among his many publications the most important was his monumental two-volume study of the satirist Karl Kraus. He was appointed OBE in 2005 and his work was recognised in Austria by the award of the Austrian State Prize for History of the Social Sciences (2002), the Austrian Cross of Honour for Arts and Sciences (2008) and the Decoration of Honour in Gold for Services to the Province of Vienna (2013). He remained dedicated to the College and was proud of his Life Fellowship. He was an outstanding scholar but also a kind and deeply generous man. He was a much admired supervisor and mentor to several current members of the Cambridge German department. In his later years he suffered from an increasingly debilitating illness which he bore with great fortitude. It did not deter him from pursuing his research until the last or from pursuing the joint research projects into modern Turkish literature with his wife Saime. His prize-winning translation of Kraus’s The Last Days of Mankind was published by Yale in 2015. Friends who met him at the many conferences that he attended were invariably greeted with great warmth and left impressed by the fact that his voice remained strong and clear despite his lack of mobility.



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