LINGUIST List 16.352

Fri Feb 04 2005

All: Obituary for Rado Lencek

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        1.    Donald F. Reindl, Obituary for Rado Lencek

Message 1: Obituary for Rado Lencek

Date: 03-Feb-2005
From: Donald F. Reindl <>
Subject: Obituary for Rado Lencek

New York - The Slovenian linguist, Slavist, cultural historian and
ethnologist Rado Leneck died in New York on Thursday at the age of 84.
Lencek received his doctorate in Slavic languages and literatures from
Harvard in 1962, and then taught Slavic languages and literature at the
University of Illinois at Chicago. In 1965 he started teaching at Columbia
University in New York, where he remained until his retirement in 1995. In
recognition of his many years of service in raising the profile of the
Slovenian language abroad, he received the honorary medal of freedom of the
Republic of Slovenia in 2001.

Rado Lencek was born in 1921 in Mirna, Lower Carniola, and in 1940
graduated from the Novo Mesto upper secondary school. He was a student in
the Slavic studies program at the University of Ljubljana's Faculty of Arts
until 1944, and then continued his studies at the University of Padua in
1946 and 1947. In 1959 he studied in the graduate program at the University
of Chicago, and then from 1959 to 1962 at Harvard. For the first ten years
after the Second World War, Lencek was employed as a professor at Slovenian
secondary schools in the British-American section of the Free Territory of
Trieste in Gorizia and Trieste. For a time in Trieste he also edited the
''Kulturne vesti'' [Cultural News] newsletter of the United States
Information Service, and in 1956 he and his family emigrated to the United

Professor Lencek published many books and articles in the course of his
research. These include the books ''Ob Jadranu: Etnografski zapiski in
studije'' [Along the Adriatic: Ethnographic Notes and Studies] (Trieste,
1947), ''Slovenska marijanska lirika'' [Slovenian Marian Lyrics] (Trieste,
1954), ''A Bibliographical Guide to Literature on Slavic Civilizations''
(New York, 1966), ''The Structure and History of the Slovene Language''
(Columbus, 1975),'' To Honor Jernej Kopitar 1780-1980'' (Ann Arbor, 1982),
and ''Slovenes, the Eastern Alpine Slavs, and their Cultural Heritage''
(New York, 1989).

The honors that Lencek received include an award from the American
Association of Teachers of Slavic and Eastern European Languages (1994) and
an honorary ambassadorship of the Republic of Slovenia, which was awarded
to him in 1995 by the Ministry of Science and Technology for his
achievements in research that contributed to raising Slovenia's
international profile.

Published in ''Delo,'' Friday, 28 January, 2005
Translated by Donald F. Reindl

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