William Allan Neilson
|Born||28 March 1869|
Doune, Perthshire, Scotland
|Died||13 February 1946 (aged 76)|
Northampton, Massachusetts, United States
|Occupation(s)||Educator, writer, and lexicographer|
|Board member of||G.C. Merriam and Co., NAACP, National Refugee Service|
|Alma mater||University of Edinburgh, Harvard University|
|Institutions||Bryn Mawr College, Harvard University, Columbia University, Smith College|
|Notable works||The Facts about Shakespeare|
William Allan Neilson (28 March 1869 – 13 February 1946) was a Scottish-American educator, writer and lexicographer, graduated in the University of Edinburgh in 1891 and became a PhD in Harvard University in 1898. He was president of Smith College between 1917 and 1939.
Neilson was born in Doune, Scotland on 28 March 1869. He emigrated to the United States in 1895, being naturalised 3 August 1905. He taught at Bryn Mawr College from 1898 to 1900, Harvard from 1900 to 1904, Columbia from 1904 to 1906, and Harvard again from 1906 to 1917. Neilson was author of a number of critical works on William Shakespeare, Robert Burns and the Elizabethan theatre, editor of the Cambridge and Tudor editions of Shakespeare (1906, 1911) and editor of Webster's New International Dictionary, Second Edition (1934). Less known is his translation of the famous late 14th century Middle English alliterative chivalric romance Sir Gawain and the Green Knight.
- The Origins and Sources of the "Court of Love" (1899)
- Milton's Minor Poems (1909); 1919 edition
- Essentials of Poetry (1912)
- with Ashley Horace Thorndike: The Facts About Shakespeare (1913)
- Lectures on the Harvard Classics (1914)
- Robert Burns, Project Gutenberg books.google (1917)
- Sir Gawain And The Green Knight (transl. by William Allan Neilson) (1917)
- with Ashley Horace Thorndike: History of English Literature (1920)
- "William Allan Neilson Personal Papers, 1952–1946, Biographical Note". Five College Archives & Manuscript Collections. Retrieved 26 April 2017.
- "Smith's Beloved Dr. Neilson Dies". Holyoke Transcript-Telegram. 14 February 1946. pp. 1, 4. Retrieved 30 April 2023 – via Newspapers.com.
- "President William Allan Neilson". Smithipedia. Retrieved 26 April 2017.
- "William Allan Neilson". American Academy of Arts & Sciences. 9 February 2023. Retrieved 3 April 2023.
- "APS Member History". search.amphilsoc.org. Retrieved 3 April 2023.
- Margaret Farrand Thorp, Neilson of Smith (1956)
- Works by or about William Allan Neilson at Wikisource
- Works by William Allan Neilson at Project Gutenberg
- Works by or about William Allan Neilson at Internet Archive
- Works by William Allan Neilson at LibriVox (public domain audiobooks)
- Allison Lockwood, "Making of a president: Smith College's William Allan Neilson," Daily Hampshire Gazette, 8 May 2010.
- William Allan Neilson personal papers at the Smith College Archives, Smith College Special Collections
- Office of President William Allan Neilson files at the Smith College Archives, Smith College Special Collections