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Pollard Prize 2018


Entries are invited for this year’s Pollard Prize (sponsored by Wiley) awarded for the best paper presented at an IHR seminar 2017-18 by a postgraduate student or by a researcher within one year of completing the PhD.1096214263368_PXYJwtsF_l

First prize

Fast track publication in the prestigious IHR journal, Historical Research, and £200 of Blackwell books.

Runner up prizes

Publication in Historical Research, and a selection of Blackwell books.


Applicants are required to have delivered a paper during the academic year in which the award is made. Submissions should be supported by a reference from a convenor of the appropriate seminar. Papers should be fully footnoted, although it is not necessary at this stage to follow Historical Research house style. All papers submitted must be eligible for publication.

The closing date for submissions is  24 May 2018.

Enquiries and submissions should be directed to the Executive Editor, Historical Research (

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Daring Dynasty: Custom, Conflict and Control in Early-Tudor England by Mark R. Horowitz


He founded perhaps the most famous dynasty in history: the Tudors. Yet, in 1485 when Henry Tudor defeated Richard III to become King Henry VII, he possessed the most anaemic claim to the throne since William the Conqueror. In defiance of the norms of medieval rule, he transformed England from an insolvent, often divided country in the waning years of the Wars of the Roses into an emerging modern state upon his death in 1509, a legacy inherited by his larger-than-life heir, Henry VIII. How did this happen? Through impressive archival research over several decades and a provocative perspective, Daring Dynasty illuminates what occurred by exploring key aspects of Henry’s reign, which included a dark side to royal policy. It will provide historians, students, history enthusiasts and devotees of “all things Tudor” with an understanding of how the populace and political players melded into a nation through the efforts of its king and his government.

Mark Horowitz’s new volume contains collected essays including articles originally published in the IHR’s journal Historical Research. For more information see here.

Mark was guest editor of the journal’s special issue Who was Henry VII? The 500th anniversary of the death of the first Tudor King (August 2009)

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Historical Research – top 5 most cited articles


Discover and Share Top Research From Historical Research
Enjoy FREE access to the top 5 most cited articles over the past two years. These key articles are generating conversation and influencing your community.
Top 5 Most Cited Articles:


The rise of the promeneur: walking the city in eighteenth-century Paris. Laurent Turcot


Notable protests: respectable resistance in occupied northern France, 1914-18. James E. Connolly


Sterilization and the British Conservative party: rethinking the failure of the Eugenics Society’s political strategy in the nineteen-thirties. Bradley W. Hart and Richard Carr


The representation and experience of English urban fire disasters. John E. Morgan


False traitors or worthy knights? Treason and rebellion against Edward II in the Scalacronica and the Anglo-Norman prose Brut chronicles. Andy King


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Historical Research survey and prize draw



20 October – 12 November 2017

We would really like to hear what you think about the IHR’s journal, Historical Research. Please help by filling in our survey. All information provided will be kept anonymous and used solely for the purpose of improving our services to authors and readers. We would like to hear from past, present (and future) authors, regular and occasional readers and the history community at large. Let us know what you value in a history journal and help us to keep improving!

You can also enter our prize draw to win £50 worth of Wiley books.

Thank you.

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Royal Historical Society Alexander Prize


Congratulations to Felicity Hill whose Historical Research article  ‘Magna Carta, canon law and pastoral care: excommunication and the church’s publication of the charter’ (Historical Research, lxxxix (2016)), was selected as runner up in the Royal Historical Society’s prestigious Alexander Prize for 2017.

The judges commented: “This article impressed the judges by offering a fresh perspective on a much studied subject: Magna Carta. The author does this by connecting two aspects of thirteenth-century history that have usually been treated separately: efforts to promulgate the definitive 1225 text of the Charter, and the Church’s concern to improve pastoral care. In particular, she argues that the inclusion of a sanction of general excommunication on breakers of Magna Carta and the Forest Charter, especially after this sanction was given written form in 1253, meant that the clergy were obliged to publicize the sentence, together with the charters, so that parishioners would avoid incurring the resulting spiritual penalties. Thus the Church’s duty of pastoral care contributed to the dissemination of political awareness. Clearly and cogently argued, firmly grounded in the primary sources, especially canon law, and engaging critically with a wide range of secondary literature in several languages, the article makes an original and significant contribution to scholarship, and the judges warmly recommend that it be selected as proxime accessit.”


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August issue of Historical Research



Historical Research, vol. xc, no. 249

Two men in prison MS Ludwig XIV 6 (Getty open content)


Getting out of jail: suicide, escape and release in late medieval and Renaissance Bologna. Trevor Dean

The 1553 succession crisis reconsidered. Paulina Kewes

Whose city? Civic government and episcopal power in early modern Salisbury, c.1590–1640. Catherine Patterson

‘I was no “master of this work” but a servant to it’? William Laud, Charles I and the making of Scottish ecclesiastical policy, 1634–6. Leonie James [open access]

Between tension and rapprochement: Sunni-Shi‘ite relations in the pre-modern Ottoman period, with a focus on the eighteenth century. M. Sait Özervarlı

One of the best men of business we had ever met’: Thomas Drummond, the boundary commission and the 1832 Reform Act. Martin Spychal [open access]

Charles Mason, the ‘king of China’: British imperial adventuring in the late nineteenth century. Catherine Ladds

‘That racial chasm that yawns eternally in our midst’: the British empire and the politics of Asian migration, 1900–14. Cornelis Heere

Invasion, raids and army reform: the political context of ‘flotilla defence’, 1903–5. Richard Dunley

‘And those who live, how shall I tell their fame?’ Historical pageants, collective remembrance and the First World War, 1919–39. Angela Bartie, Linda Fleming, Mark Freeman, Tom Hulme, Paul Readman and Charlotte Tupman [open access]

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Pollard and Neale Prize winners 2017


Congratulations to the winners of the Pollard and Neale prizes:

Sir John Neale Prize in Early Modern British History

The Neale Prize is awarded annually to a historian in the early stages of his or her career for an essays on a theme related to the history of early modern Britain.

Winner: Stephen Tong of Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, for ‘The Doctrine of the Sabbath in the Edwardian Reformation’


The Annual Pollard Prize (sponsored by Wiley)

The Pollard Prize is awarded annually for the best paper presented at an Institute of Historical Research seminar by a postgraduate student or by a researcher within one year of completing the PhD.

Winner:  Kenneth Duggan of Kings College, London,  for ‘The Limits of Strong Government: Attempts to Control Criminality in Thirteenth-Century England’, paper given to the European History Seminar 1150-1500

Runner up: Imogen Peck of the University of Bristol, for  ‘A chronology of some memorable accidents’: the representation of the recent past in English almanacs, 1648-1660, paper given to the History Lab seminar

The papers will be published in Historical Research


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New Historical Research articles



Nader Shah’s portrait from the collection of the Smithsonian Institution

Between tension and rapprochement: Sunni-Shi‘ite relations in the pre-modern Ottoman period, with a focus on the eighteenth century by M. Sait Özervarlı

The Ottoman empire is known for its ethnically and religiously pluralistic social fabric, but also for defending the mainstream Sunni branch of Islam in opposition to its Iranian Safavid rival. This article revisits the Ottoman construction of Sunnism and suggests that, despite strict state policies from above to exclude Shi‘ites and communal pressures from below in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, channels of dialogue could not be closed down in the long term. By focusing on a specific intra-religious dialogue of 1743, that aimed at reconciliation between Sunnis and Shi‘ites, this article highlights a probable case of ‘de-confessionalization’. Close examination of the textual account of this inter-communal meeting demonstrates how the Ottomans were torn between defending their Sunni identity and the need for rapprochement to avoid further sectarianism in broader Muslim society.


Invasion, raids and army reform: the political context of ‘flotilla defence’, 1903–5 by Richard Dunley

A1 class submarine, 1902

In response to the pressure of the invasion debates of 1903–1905 the Admiralty developed a new strategy, ‘flotilla defence’, to counter arguments brought forward by the War Office. This concept was a purely political one; it was a cynical bid to mislead the Committee of Imperial Defence in order to secure naval funding. By placing ‘flotilla defence’ in this context this article will demonstrate that it was not, as has been claimed, a revolutionary naval strategy, but part of the polarization of defence policy which led to a breakdown in relations between the army and the navy.


‘And those who live, how shall I tell their fame?’ Historical pageants, collective remembrance and the First World War, 1919–39 by Angela Bartie, Linda Fleming, Mark Freeman, Tom Hulme, Paul Readman and Charlotte Tupman  [open access]

Oxford Historical Pageant, 1907 (Wikimedia Commons)

This article examines the ways in which the First World War was represented in historical pageants during the interwar period. Pageants in this period are often overlooked as sites of commemoration and dramatic representation. Three types of pageant are identified: those that portrayed the war hyper-realistically, those which relied on symbolism and allegory to convey messages about war and peace, and those which sought to incorporate the war into the longer histories of the communities whose pasts they depicted. The article argues that ‘traditional’ forms of representation of the past proved to be resilient features of popular commemoration and remembrance.



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New IHR research guide on Material Culture


History through Material Culture

by Leonie Hannan and Sarah Longair

History through material culture is a unique, step-by-step guide for students and researchers who wish to use objects as historical sources. Responding to the significant scholarly interest in historical material culture studies, this book makes clear how students and researchers ready to use these rich material sources can make important, valuable and original contributions to history.

Written by two experienced museum practitioners and historians, the book recognises the theoretical and practical challenges of this approach and offers clear advice on methods to get the best out of material culture research. With a focus on the early modern and modern periods, this volume draws on examples from across the world and demonstrates how to use material culture to answer a range of enquiries, including social, economic, gender, cultural and global history.


1 Approaches to the material world
2 Planning a research project
3 Developing a methodology
4 Locating sources: understanding museum collections and other repositories
5 Analysing sources
6 Writing up findings

Leonie Hannan is Research Fellow in Eighteenth-Century History at Queen’s University, Belfast
Sarah Longair is Lecturer in the History of Empire at the University of Lincoln


Price: £12.99, pbk.
ISBN: 978-1-7849-9126-5
Published: April 2017

Buy now

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New Historical Research articles


“Recruiter Deserted,” an engraving by Georges Keating after George Morland and published by J. L. Smithers in 1791.

‘To become again our brethren’: desertion and community during the American Revolutionary War, 1775–83 by Jonathan Chandler

Desertion from active military service has always been a contentious action, especially in times of war. Deserters in the eighteenth century were routinely castigated as poor patriots or traitorous subjects. Recently, scholars have begun to analyse in greater depth how and why desertions occurred, and have demonstrated that political considerations were less important than issues of identity and interest. However, in the context of the American Revolutionary War, historians have focused on the relationship between deserters and the military, arguing that soldiers who left their posts were less integrated into the camp community. This article suggests that the act of desertion was often more than a protest against conditions or discipline, but instead was shaped by a deserter’s connections with civil society rather than the military community.

‘The Gallaunts of Fawey’: a case study of Fowey during the Hundred Years’ War, c.1337–1399, by S. J. Drake

This article explores the influence of the Hundred Years’ War on Fowey between c.1337 and 1399. In so doing, it employs naval pay rolls to study the contribution the town made to royal fleets and considers the mechanisms which the Crown employed to defend the port from enemy raids. It also examines the degree to which the war was extended though the agency of ‘pirates’. The article argues that the conflict had an all-pervasive effect upon Fowey, but that the costs incurred by the port and its people as a result of this were by no means crippling.

Detail from Bayeaux Tapestry, c.1070

In Anglo-Saxon courts, from the eighth century down to the Norman conquest, ‘officers of the mouth’, bore household titles and served the king and his guests during meals, at least on major occasions. Those butlers (pincernae) and dish-bearers (dapiferi, disciferi) were not mere ‘waiters’ but members of great aristocratic families; serving the king’s table was an honour for them, with all the implications of that word in an early medieval context. Using a variety of sources, particularly the subscription lists of charters, this article examines their rank at court, social origin, degree of proximity to kings and queens, and the nature of their occupation.

‘One of the best men of business we had ever met’: Thomas Drummond, the boundary commission and the 1832 Reform Act by Martin Spychal

As one of Britain’s landmark constitutional reforms, the 1832 Reform Act has attracted considerable historical attention. However, only cursory notice has been paid to the extensive work completed by the 1831–2 boundary commission to reform the nation’s parliamentary boundaries. Drawing on previously unused archival material, this article provides the first sustained analysis of the boundary reforms that took place in England’s ancient boroughs in 1832, revealing the significance of Thomas Drummond, a previously obscure royal engineer and chair of the English and Welsh boundary commission, to the ‘Great Reform Act’. As well as revealing the wider importance of parliamentary boundaries to the passage of reform by 1832, Drummond and the boundary commission established significant precedents for the expansion of the reformed British state and future parliamentary reform.

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