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About Dr David Harry

My research interests lie in the religious, political and cultural history of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, with particular reference to pre-Reformation Britain and the Catholic Reformation. 

My first monograph, Constructing a Civic Community in Late Medieval London: the Common Profit, Charity and Commemoration was published by Boydell in 2019. The Urban Church in Late Medieval England: Essays in Honour of Clive Burgess, co-edited with Christian Steer, was also published in 2019 by Shaun Tyas. I am also preparing, with Dr Steer, an edition of the churchwardens accounts of St Nicholas Shambles (Newgate) for the London Record Society. I have also published on the church in London, the macabre, the early printed book, monumental brasses and Catholic martyrdom in the sixteenth century. I have recently been involved in the Paul Mellon funded project 'Saints Shrines as Tangible Art: A Digital Baromter' in collaboration with the University of Lancaster.

Before joining the Department of History and Archaeology full-time in September 2017, I undertook teaching and research positions at the Universities of the West of England, Bristol, Kent and Chester. Between 2013 and 2018 I was secretary of the Harlaxton Medieval Symposium (

I would be happy to supervise PhD students on any aspect of religious and cultural life in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries with particular reference to unreformed and Catholic worship.

Modules taught at Chester include: HI5130 Witchcraze; HI6143 Heresy and Unbelief in an Age of Reform; HI7348 Killing in the Name: Colonial Missions in Africa, Asia and the Americas, 1400-1600.


Modules I currently teach at Chester include:

HI5130: Witchcraze

HI6143: Heresy and Unbelief in an Age of Reform, 1400-1600

HI6144: Historical Sources: Heresy and Unbelief

HI7348: “Killing in the Name”: Colonial Missions in Africa, Asia and the Americas, 1400-1600


I also teach on the following team-taught modules:

HI4114: Turning Points in History 1000-2000

HI5105: Research Methods, Practices and Skills

HI5117: Journeys in the Past

HI6100: Dissertation

HI7401/4: Research Methods and Skills in History

HI7329: Dissertation


My research interests lie in the history of religion and supernatural in the period 1400-1600 with particular focus on the Catholic tradition.

Areas of MRes and MPhil/PhD supervision:

  • Pre-Reformation England and the English Reformation
  • Aspects of Catholic worship and theology
  • The Counter Reformation and Global Mission
  • Witchcraft, the supernatural and folk magic
  • Early print
  • The parish church and parish records
  • The administrative and ecclesiastical history of London

Published Work


David Harry, Constructing a Civic Community in Late Medieval London: the Common Profit, Charity and Commemoration (Boydell, 2019)

David Harry and Christian Steer (eds), The Urban Church in Late Medeival England: Essays in Honour of Clive Burgess (Shaun Tyas, 2019)

David Harry, ‘Martyrdom and Marriage: The Death of John Fisher Reconsidered’, in Sue Powell (ed.), Saints in the Middle Ages (Shaun Tyas, 2017), pp. 124-39.

David Harry, 'A Cadaver in Context: The Brass of John Brigge Reconsidered’, Transactions of the Monumental Brass Society 19 (2015), 101-10.

David Harry, 'Caxton and Commemorative Culture in Fifteenth-Century England’, in Linda Clark (ed), Exploring the Evidence: Commemoration, Administration and the Economy (Boydell, 2014), pp. 63-80.

David Harry, ‘Learning to Die in Yorkist England: Earl Rivers’ Cordial’, in Hannes Kleineke and Christian Steer (eds), The Yorkist Age (Shaun Tyas, 2013), pp. 380-98.


BA (UEA), MA, PhD (Bristol)