Dieter Bitterli

Dieter Bitterli, Prof. Dr.

Privatdozent für Englische Philologie

Phone: +41 44 6343551


Dieter Bitterli has taught Old and Middle English language and literature at the Universities of Lausanne and Zurich (Switzerland), where he is a lecturer in the English Department. He received his PhD from the University of Zurich, studying English, German, and Medieval Latin. After a research grant from the Swiss National Fund (1992-97), he submitted his Habilitationsschrift (requirement for a professorship) on the Exeter Book Riddles to the University of Zurich in 2005, and became Privatdozent (lecturer) the same year. From 1998 to 2007 he held the post of Wissenschaftlicher Oberassistent at the English Department of the University, before he was appointed professor of English language, literature and culture (Fachwissenschaft Englisch) at the University of Teacher Education Lucerne.

At the English Seminar, Dieter Bitterli has regularly taught seminar courses in Old and Middle English language, literature and culture, from "Beowulf" to Robin Hood. He has supervised a number of M.A. theses and exams in the field of pre-modern English literature and linguistics (Englische Sprachwissenschaft).

Dieter Bitterli's two main areas of research are Anglo-Saxon literature, including the relations between medieval Latin and the vernacular, and Early Modern emblems and architecture. He is a member of the International Society of Anglo-Saxonists (ISAS) and the Society for Emblem Studies. Among his current projects is the web-based Inventory of Applied Emblems in Switzerland (see below under "Electronic publications")



Der Bilderhimmel von Hergiswald. [Vollständig überarbeitete und erweiterte Neuausgabe.] Salenstein: Benteli 2018.

Say What I Am Called: The Old English Riddles of the Exeter Book and the Anglo-Latin Riddle Tradition. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2009.

Die Wallfahrtskirche Unserer Lieben Frau in Hergiswald (LU). Bern: Gesellschaft für Schweizerische Kunstgeschichte, 2000; 2nd rev. ed. 2007.

Der Bilderhimmel von Hergiswald: Der barocke Emblemzyklus der Wallfahrtskirche Unserer Lieben Frau in Hergiswald bei Luzern, seine Quellen, sein mariologisches Programm und seine Bedeutung. Basel: Wiese, 1997; 2nd rev. ed. 1999.

Prokop von Templin OFMCap: Encæniale, Das ist: Hundert Kirch-Tag-Predigen (1671): Photomechanischer Nachdruck, mit Kommentar, Glossar, Nachwort und Bibliographie, Geistliche Literatur der Barockzeit, 13-4, 2 vols. Amsterdam, Maarssen: Amsterdam University Press, 1990. [PhD University of Zurich]

Select Articles: Anglo-Saxonica

"Exeter Book Riddle 95, the Sun" [under review for publication 2019]

"Spur, a New Solution to Exeter Book Riddle 62", Notes and Queries 66 (2019) [accepted for September 2019 issue]

"The One-Liners Among the Exeter Book Riddles", Neophilologus 103 (2019), pp. 419-434.

"Strange Perceptions: Sensory Experience in the Old English Marvels of the East", in The Five Senses in Medieval and Early Modern England, eds. Annette Kern-Stähler, Beatrix Busse and Wietse de Boer. Leiden and Boston: Brill, 2016, pp. 137-62.

"Two Old English Prose Riddles of the Eleventh Century", in Words, Words, Words: Philology and Beyond: Festschrift for Andreas Fischer on the Occasion of his 65th Birthday, eds. Sarah Chevalier and Thomas Honegger (Tübingen: Francke, 2012), pp. 1-11.

"Alkuin von York und die angelsächsische Rätseldichtung", Anglia 128 (2010), pp. 4-20. English abstract [revised version of "Alkuin und die angelsächsische Rätseldichtung", in: Alkuin von York und die geistige Grundlegung Europas, eds. E.Tremp and K.Schmuki (St.Gallen: Verlag am Klosterhof, 2010), pp. 151-67].

"The 'Cuckoo' in the Collectanea of Pseudo-Bede: An Unnoticed Analogue to Exeter Book Riddle 9", Notes and Queries 56 (2009), pp. 481-2.

"The Survival of the Dead Cuckoo: Exeter Book Riddle 9", in Riddles, Knights and Cross-dressing Saints: Essays on Medieval English Language and Literature, ed. T. Honegger, Sammlung/Collection Variations 5 (Bern, Berlin etc.: Peter Lang, 2004), pp. 95-114.

"Exeter Book Riddle 15: Some Points for the Porcupine", Anglia 120 (2002), pp. 461-87. English abstract

Select Articles: Emblematica

"Marcellin de Pise OFMCap (1594-1665) und seine Moralis encyclopaedia: Die Predigtsammlung des französischen Kapuziners – eine neu entdeckte Quelle für den Bilderhimmel von Hergiswald", Helvetia Franciscana 47 (2018), pp. 113-22.

" – zur Dokumentation angewandter Emblematik in der Schweiz", in Architektur als Ort für Embleme, ed. Ingrid Höpel. Kiel: Ludwig, 2014, pp. 28-34.

"Imago Sancti Judoci: An Unknown Cycle of Applied Emblems in Central Switzerland", in Visual Words and Verbal Pictures: Essays in Honour of Michael Bath, eds. Alison Saunders and Peter Davidson, Glasgow Emblem Studies, special volume. Glasgow: Glasgow Emblem Studies, 2005, pp. 13-36.

"Barockemblematik, Memento mori und Totentanz: Die Embleme in der Beinhauskapelle von Ettiswil (LU)", Zeitschrift für Schweizerische Archäologie und Kunstgeschichte 58 (2001), pp. 143-58.

"Tota pulchra es amica mea: Marianische Embleme in Luzern, Stans und Hospental", Der Geschichtsfreund 146 (1993), pp. 115-150.

"Die emblematische Kassettendecke der Rosenburg in Stans (NW)", Zeitschrift für Schweizerische Archäologie und Kunstgeschichte 49 (1992), pp. 201-220.

Web Publications An Inventory of Applied Emblems in Switzerland.
Regular contributions since 2011; ongoing.

Bilderhimmel Hergiswald