Professor Christopher J Tyerman

Senior Research Fellow and Tutor in History, Archivist


Educated at New College, Oxford (BA First Class 1974; DPhil 1981), lecturer at the University of York (1976-77), holder of Oxford research fellowships at The Queen’s College (1977-82) and Exeter College (1982-87), and winner of the Royal Historical Society’s Alexander Prize Medal (1981), Professor Tyerman has been a lecturer in medieval history at Hertford since 1979 and a fellow since 2006.

Undergraduate teaching 

Professor Tyerman teaches most of the undergraduate courses in British and European history from 500 to 1500, a number of medieval First Year options and Historiography, as well as a specialist Further Subject on the Crusades. 

Postgraduate teaching 

Professor Tyerman supervises graduate research students for the MStud and DPhil on medieval topics, especially those relating to the Crusades.


Professor Tyerman’s main research interests have related to crusading as a cultural, religious, political and social phenomenon of medieval western Europe between the eleventh and sixteenth centuries. He has lectured and published widely on various aspects of the crusades, from motivation and perception to their social and intellectual structures. He has also written in particular on crusading in relation to high and late medieval England and later medieval France as well as on crusading historiography from the middle ages to the present day. Recently published books have included The Crusades in the popular Very Short Introduction series (OUP 2005 with translations into German, Spanish, Bulgarian, Portuguese etc. but forbidden a licence in the People’s Republic of China); God’s War: A New History of the Crusades (Allen Lane/ Penguin and Harvard University Press 2006, a major and comprehensive new survey now translated into a number of languages including Estonian); and The Debate on the Crusades 1099-2010 (Manchester University Press 2011). Other research interests have included aspects of the history of education. He also reviews widely both for academic journals in the UK, US and Canada and for the press, such as the Times Literary Supplement or the Wall Street Journal.


Publications include (by type and chronological order)



England and the Crusades 1095-1588 (University of Chicago Press 1988;paperback

edition 1996)

Who’s Who in Early Medieval England 1066-1272 (Shepheard Walwyn 1996; US edition, Stackpole 2001)

The Invention of the Crusades (Macmillan 1998; Italian trans.,Einaudi, Turin 2000)

A History of Harrow School 1324-1991 (Oxford University Press 2000)

An Eyewitness History of the Crusades ( 4 vols. of edited and introduced translated sources, Folio Society 2004)

Fighting for Christendom: Holy War and the Crusades (Oxford University Press 2004; Spanish trans. as  Las Cruzadas: Realidad y mito Criticia 2005; Bulgarian trans. 2006; Portuguese 2009;German 2009; others in preparation. Second English edition, in an abbreviated form, as The Crusades: A Very Short Introduction OUP 2005 ; new illustrated edn, Sterling, NY 2009)

God’s War: A New History of the Crusades (Penguin/Allen Lane and Harvard University Press 2006; paperback UK 2007; US 2008; trans. Spanish, Estonian; Italian; projected: Portuguese; Czech; Greek; Turkish etc.)

The Debate on the Crusades 1099-2010 (Manchester University Press 2011)


Edited volumes:

Soldiers Nobles and Gentlemen: Essays in Honour of Maurice Keen (Boydell & Brewer 2009), ed. Peter Coss and Christopher Tyerman

New College (Third Millenium 2010), ed. Christopher Tyerman

Chronicles of the First Crusade (Penguin Classics; Penguin UK 2011), ed. and introduced Christopher Tyerman




‘Marino Sanudo Torsello and the Lost Crusade: Lobbying in the Fourteenth Century’,

Transactions of the Royal Historical Society,5th Series,vol.32 (1982)

‘Philip V of France, the assemblies of 1319-20 and the Crusade’, Bulletin of the Institute of Historical Research,vol.lvii,no.135 (1984)

‘Sed nihil fecit? The last Capetians and the Recovery of the Holy Land’, War and Government in the Middle Ages, ed. J. Gillingham & J. C. Holt (Woodbridge 1984)

‘The Holy Land and the Crusades in the Thirteenth and Fourteenth Centuries’, Crusade and Settlement, ed. P. W. Edbury (Cardiff 1985)

‘Philip VI of France and the Recovery of the Holy Land’, English Historical Review, c (1985)

‘Some English evidence of attitudes to the crusade in the thirteenth century’, Thirteenth Century Studies, i, ed. S. Lloyd (Woodbridge 1986)

‘Harrow School in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries’, Journal of the Byron Society 1989

Articles on the Crusades and Language and National Identity in the Middle Ages for The Chronicle of World History (Longman, London 1990)

Contributor to The Atlas of the Crusades, ed. J. Riley-Smith (London 1991)

‘Who went on Crusade to the Holy Land?’, The Horns of Hattin, ed. B. Z. Kedar (Jerusalem 1992)

‘Were there any Crusades to the Holy Land in the Twelfth Century?’, English Historical Review, cx (1995); reprinted in T. F. Madden, The Crusades: The Essential Readings (Blackwells 2002)

Contributor to A Dictionary of Art, ed. J. Turner (Macmillan 1996)

‘Holy War, Roman Popes, and Christian Soldiers: Some Early Modern Views on Medieval Christendom’, The Medieval Church: Universities, Heresy and the Religious Life, ed. P. Biller and B. Dobson, Studies in Church History : Subsidia 11 (Woodbridge 1999)

‘What the Crusades meant to Europe’, The Medieval World, ed. P. Linehan and J. Nelson (Routledge 2001; paperback 2003)

‘William of Wykeham 1324-1404’, New College Record, 2004

Entries in The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography

Entries on Crusades against Christians, Crusade Historiography, Edward I’s Crusade and Marino Sanudo Torsello for An Encyclopaedia of the Crusades, gen. ed. A.V.Murray (ABC-CLIO 2006)

Principes et Populus: Civil Society and the First Crusade’, Cross, Crescent and Conversion, ed. S. Barton and P. Linehan (Brill, Leiden 2008)

‘The Expansion of Europe and the Crusades’, A Companion to the Medieval World ed. C. Lansing and E. English (Blackwell 2009)

‘Court, Crusade and City: The cultural milieu of Louis I, duke of Bourbon’, Soldiers, Nobles and Gentlemen: Essays in Honour of Maurice Keen, ed. P. Coss and C. Tyerman (Boydell and Brewer 2009)

‘Henry of Livonia and Crusade Ideology’, Crusading and Chronicle Writing on the Medieval Frontier, ed. M. Tamm, L. Kaljundi and C. Selch Jensen (Ashgate 2011)

‘New wine in old skins? The Crusade and the Eastern Mediterranean in the Later Middle Ages’, Byzantines, Latins and Turks in the Eastern Mediterranean World after 1150, ed. C. Holmes and J. Harris (Oxford Byzantine Studies, Oxford University Press 2012)

Reviews and short notices for the English Historical Review, Art History, Medium Aevum, History, Early Medieval History, War in History, The Literary Review, The Sunday Times, The Spectator, The Times Literary Supplement, Journal of International History, Speculum, Wall Street Journal etc.


Future Publications


The Practices of Crusading: Image and Action from the Eleventh to the Sixteenth Centuries (Variorum Series, Ashgate 2013)

How to Fight a Successful Crusade: Reason and Religious War in the Middle Ages (Allen Lane/Penguin, delivery 2013)

Chapter in ‘Crusading in the Fifteenth and Sixteenth centuries’ for The Cambridge History of the Crusades, ed. J. Phillips and A, Jotischky (Cambridge University Press – delivery 2014)