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Professor Sir John Hale

The History Department is sad to announce the passing of Professor Sir John Hale, founding Chair of the Warwick History Department, on 12th August 1999. A copy of his obituary is available online.


Sir John Rigby Hale
(September 17, 1923 - August 12, 1999) was a British Renaissance historian, translator, editor, and university professor. John Rigby Hale was born September 17, 1923, in Ashford, Kent, in the United Kingdom. He was educated at Jesus College, Oxford (B.A., 1948, M.A., 1953). He also attended Johns Hopkins University and Harvard University (1948-49). He was a Fellow of the British Academy and Emeritus Professor of Italian History at University College, London, where he was head of the Italian Department from 1970 until his retirement in 1988. His first position was as Fellow and Tutor in Modern History at Jesus College, Oxford, from 1949-1964, followed by being the first Professor of History at Warwick University. He taught at a number of other universities including Cornell and the University of California. He was a Trustee of the National Gallery, London from 1973-80, becoming Chairman from 1974. He was made a Knight Bachelor on 20 August 1984.



  • Napoleon: the Story of his Life, London, Faber and Faber, 1954.
  • England and the Italian Renaissance: the Growth of Interest in its History and Art, London, Faber and Faber, 1954.
  • Machiavelli and Renaissance Italy, London, English Universities Press, 1961.
  • The Art of War and Renaissance England, Washington, Folger Shakespeare Library, 1961.
  • Renaissance exploration, New York, W. W. Norton, 1968.
  • Italian Renaissance Painting from Masaccio to Titian, New York: Dutton, 1977.
  • Florence and the Medici: the Pattern of Control, London, Thames and Hudson, 1977.
  • Renaissance Fortification: Art or Engineering?, London, Thames and Hudson, 1977.
  • Renaissance War Studies, London, Hambledon Press, 1983.
  • Artists and warfare in the Renaissance, Yale University Press, 1990.
  • The Civilization of Europe in the Renaissance (1993)


  • Mandragola: a comedy, by Niccolò Machiavelli, Fantasy Press, 1957.
  • Literary Works: Mandragola, Clizia, A dialogue on language, and Belfagor: with selections from the private correspondence, by Niccolò Machiavelli. Edited and translated by J.R. Hale, London, New York, Oxford University Press, 1961.
  • The Travel Journal of Antonio de Beatis: Germany, Switzerland, the Low Countries, France and Italy, 1517-1518, translated from the Italian by J. R. Hale and J. M. A. Lindon. Edited by J. R. Hale. London, Hakluyt Society, c1979.


  • History of Italy and History of Florence. Translated by Cecil Grayson. Edited and abridged with an introduction by John Rigby Hale. New York, Washington Square Press, 1964.
  • Certain Discourses Military, Ithaca, N.Y., Published for the Folger Shakespeare Library by Cornell University Press, 1964.
  • Europe in the Late Middle Ages. Edited by John Rigby Hale, J. R. L. Highfield [and] B. Smalley. Northwestern University Press, 1965.
  • The Evolution of British Historiography: from Bacon to Namier. London, Melbourne, Macmillan, 1967.
  • A Concise Encyclopaedia of the Italian Renaissance, New York, Oxford University Press, 1981.
  • The Thames and Hudson Encyclopedia of the Italian Renaissance, New York, Thames and Hudson, 1981.



Sir John Hale