Skip to main content Skip to navigation

Mathilde Alain

'The Christian kingdom of Ethiopia in the travel diary of Francisco Álvares (1520-1526)'

I am a second year PhD candidate in Cotutelle between the Centre for the Study of the Renaissance at Warwick and the Centre d’Études Supérieures de la Renaissance at Tours, co-supervised by Natalya Din-KariukiLink opens in a new window, Nathalie BoulouxLink opens in a new window and Paul BotleyLink opens in a new window.

My doctoral project, 'The Christian kingdom of Ethiopia in the travel diary of Francisco Álvares (1520-1526)', funded by the Chancellor's International Scholarship, aims to provide a critical edition of Alvares' travel diary and a detailed analysis of the text. In order to achieve that I study the text's transmission, a central question as the original manuscript – presumably Portuguese – has been lost.

I am interested in Ethiopian history as well as in the history of travel and in travel writing literature, connected and global history.

I have recently been awarded with the Society for Renaissance Studies/British School of Rome scholarship to stay at the British School of Rome (April-June 2023). This award enables me to study Álvares' Italian manuscripts.





Conferences and seminars

Education and Professional Development

2020-2021: research assistant at the French National Library (Paris) for a research project about the notebooks of Antoine d’Abbadie who travelled to Ethiopia (1838-1848), with Vanessa Desclaux & Anaïs Wion (a presentation of the project in FrenchLink opens in a new window)

2018-2020: MA in History (Renaissance Studies), Centre d’Études Supérieures de la Renaissance (Tours)

2019-2020: Erasmus at the University of Coimbra (Portugal)

2015-2018: Bachelor in History, University of Tours (France)

2017-2018: Erasmus year at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (Trondheim, Norway)


  • 2023: Seminar Tutor for the class 'Geographical Discoveries' with Natalya Din-Kariuki, part of the module for second and third year undergraduates: 'Renaissance Europe II: Movement, Revolution, and Conflict' (term 2, 2h) - University of Warwick.
  • 2022: Chargée de Travaux Dirigés (seminar tutor) in History for second-year undergraduates: 'Transferts culturels XII-XVe siècles' ('Cultural transfers 12-15th centuries') (term 1,18h) - University of Tours.
  • 2022: Chargée de Travaux Dirigés (seminar tutor) in History for first-year undergraduates: 'Techniques documentaires' (methodology classes to search primary and secondary sources) (term 1,18h) - University of Tours.

Other activities

  • Co-organizer of the CSR's reading group about Montaigne's Essays with Iván Parga Ornelas (2022-2023)
  • Member of the Work in Progress committee, organized by the History Department of Warwick (2022/2023)
  • Team member of the project 'Mss Abbadie' co-led by Anaïs Wion (CNRS) and Vanessa Desclaux (BnF)
  • Vice-secretary of the ADCESR (Association of the PhD Students of the CESR, Tours) (2022-2023)
  • SSLC representative for the PGR students for the CSR (2023)
  • Member of the Hakluyt Society