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Professor of HIstory, University of Warwick

Academic Profile

PhD (1990) Oxford University
Fellow of the Royal Historical Society
Member of the Editorial Board of Parliamentary History
Project Champion for the JISC funded Virtual Research Environment for the History of Political Discourse 1500-1800
Principal Investigator for a British Academy funded project to explore words and concepts in early modern Britain
Principal Investigator for an AHRC-funded Early Modern Forum for Early Modern Studies, which links Warwick with international partners such as Yale, The Sorbonne, Vanderbilt, Boston, The Huntington Library and USC.
I have recently appeared in a number of TV programmes, including Who Do You Think You Are?

Undergraduate Modules Currently Taught
Politics, Literature and Ideas in Stuart England c. 1600-c.1715 (HI271)
Corruption in Britain and its Empire 1600-1850 (HI2D2)
The Birth of Modern Society? Britain 1660-1720 (HI31G)
Modules Taught in the Past
Making History (HI175)
The Enlightenment (HI174)
Georgian Britain (HI284)
Postgraduate Modules Taught
I convene the early modern pathway through the MA. For details click here.
In 2012 I was voted 'Best Postgraduate Tutor' by students - nominations for their 'Stars of Warwick' came from across the whole University
In the past I have taught 'Corruption: Concept and Practice in Britain and its Empire, c.1600-1835' (HI979)
Selected Publications
The Devil in Disguise: Delusion, Deception and Fanaticism in the Early English Enlightenment (OUP, 2011). For details click here
Representation and Misrepresentation in Later Stuart Britain: Partisanship and Political Culture (OUP, 2005 hardback, 2006 paperback)
The Entring Book of Roger Morrice 1677-1691 vol 5 (Boydell and Brewer, 6 vols, vol. 6 2007)
many entries in The House of Commons 1690-1715 (eds. Hayton, Cruickshanks and Handley, CUP 2002)
Politics and Opinion in Crisis, 1678-1681 (CUP, 1994)
I work on the political culture of early modern Britain and its empire c.1550 - c.1850, with particular interests in the history of corruption in Britain and its empire; the integration of political and social history; the nature of public discourse; the role of print; and the interaction of politics, literature and ideas. For recent publications please see research. I am currently researching:

Corruption in Britain and its colonies, from the Reformation to Reform
Officeholding and accountability
The history of early modern words and concepts - for more details about the project see
Early modern petitioning
The life and works of James Boevey, merchant philosopher
The memoirs of an early eighteenth century rake
I am also currently leading a project to create a collective biography of Coventry - details here - seeking to explore how to create historical memory when much of the material culture of the city was destroyed during the war and recording the lives of people currently living there, to explore their own memories and hopes for a city in transition.


  • –present
    Professor of HIstory, University of Warwick