Kathrine Koller

Kathrine Koller 1959

Dr. Koller came to the University of Rochester in 1942, and in 1946 became chair of the English Department (the first female chair of any department at the University). She stepped down from the chairmanship in 1958 and remained on the faculty until 1967. In 1948, she was named Joseph H. Gilmore Professor.

Kathrine Koller, 1948

(The image left and the text below are from the 1948 UR yearbook, Interpres.)


In 1850, when the first group of men walked across the quadrangle of the Prince Street campus and up the steps of Anderson Hall, they were beginning their college work in an educational world where woman had not yet been give a place. Half a century passed before women were admitted to Prince Street, and it was not until 1902 that women were allowed to teach there.

A third milestone in college history was passed this year with the appointment of Dr. Kathrine Koller to the post of chairman of the English department, the first woman in the history of the College of Arts and Sciences to hold the chair of a major department.

Dr. Koller, whose singular graciousness and charm have inspired her students at the University since she came, is known for her willingness to discuss student problems and for her keen discernment. A stirring personality, Dr. Koller always has been a person to admire and emulate for her wit, wisdom and charm.

To her, the staff of the 1948 Interpres dedicates this book.

Kathrine Koller and English Department, 1966

1966 yearbook photograph of the English Department.

Rochester Women's Network selected Kathrine Koller-Diez for their "W" Award in 1987. The award recognizes a woman who "Serves the community by inspiring others through her leadership."


"Abraham Fraunce and Edmund Spenser" ELH 7.2 (1940): 108-120.

"Art, Rhetoric, and Holy Dying in The Faerie Queene with Special Reference to the Despair Canto." Studies in Philology 61.2 (1964): 128-139.

"Broadening the Horizon: Cultural Values in Freshman English." College Composition and Communication 6.2 (1955): 82-85.

"A Chaucer Allusion" Modern Language Notes 52.8 (1937): 568-570.

"Falstaff and the Art of Dying" Modern Language Notes 60.6 (1945): 383-386.

"Identifications in Colin Clout's Come Home Again." Modern Language Notes 50.3 (1935) 155-158.

"The Puritan Preacher's Contribution to Fiction." Reprinted from The Huntington Library Quarterly 11.4 (1948): 321-340.

"Social Usefulness as a Criterion for Research." PMLA: Publications of the Modern Language Association of America 66.1 (1951): 32-38.

"A Source of Portions of The Witch of Atlas." Modern Language Notes 52.3 (1937): 157-161.

"Spenser and Ralegh." ELH 1.1 (1934): 37-60.

"The Travayled Pylgrime by Stephen Batman and Book Two of The Faerie Queene." Modern Language Quarterly 3.4 (1942): 535-541.

"Two Elizabethen Expressions of the Idea of Mutability." Studies in Philology 35 (1938): 228-237.


Esdaile, Arundell, collector. Essays and Studies by Members of the English Association. Modern Language Notes 59.6 (1944) 428-430.

Howard, Edwin Johnston, ed. Pleasant Quippes for Upstart Newfangled Gentlewomen. Modern Language Notes 59.6 (1944) 428-430.

Hunter, George K. John Lyly, The Humanist as Courtier. Renaissance News 16.4 (1963): 339-340.

Ringler, William. Stephen Gosson: A Biographical and Critical Study. Modern Language Notes

Wallerstein, Ruth. Studies in Seventeenth-Century Poetic. Modern Language Notes 67.8 (1952) 567-569.

Winny, James (ed.) The Frame of Order: An Outline of Elizabethan Belief. Shakespeare Quarterly 9.3 (1958): 411-412.

Wither, George. A Collection of Emblemes, Ancient and Moderne (1635). Renaissance Quarterly 29.2 (1976): 292-293.

We welcome any comments or additional information about Kathrine Koller and this page. Please contact Katie Papas by e-mail kpapas@library.rochester.edu, phone (585-275-0110), or write

Koller/Collins Center for English Studies
Rush Rhees Library
University of Rochester
Rochester, NY 14627-0055.