Skip to main content Skip to navigation

Winners of the Dr Greg Wells Undergraduate Essay Prizes, 2021

During July 2021 the CSR awarded for the fifth time its Greg Wells Prizes for the best undergraduate intermediate-year and final-year essays and dissertation. We would like to thank all of our colleagues who submitted essays for entry into the prize this year, and to those who acted as adjudicators-Stella Fletcher, Estelle Paranque, Brenda Hosington, Ioanna Iordanou, Elizabeth Goldring, and Stephen Bates - as always, your support is invaluable. In total we received 16 (pre-selected) entries and the winners were:

Intermediate year essay, Luke Holloway (History) with his essay entitled: ‘Assess the relationship between Lutheranism and the printing trade in the early Reformation’. The adjudicators in this category said,

“The essay is very well executed, structured, and argued throughout. While the adjudicators wondered at first how could such a well-worn subject possibly engage the reader’s attention, it was pleasantly surprised by the new angles that the author of the essay chose to take: namely focusing on printing as a trade, rather than a medium as well as focusing on Luther’s agency and dependence on others around him. The opening paragraph was very strong and made the adjudicators want to read on. Best of all, the author’s mature and sophisticated writing style made the reading process an absolute pleasure for all the adjudicators. The sources are employed with obvious thought and the resulting text is genuinely informative.”

Final year essay, Emma Lovell (History of Art) with her essay entitled: ‘Discuss how Leonardo’s Map of Imola fits within Sixteenth Century Cartographic Tradition as an Expression of Knowledge’. The adjudicators in this category said,

"… an outstanding piece of academic work. We were particularly impressed with the engaging and lucid writing style, the high quality of research and, importantly, the highly original, yet potently convincing, arguments that the author put forth in this essay. Attuned to the interdisciplinary nature of the Centre for the Study of the Renaissance, we also found the way in which the essay effortlessly interwove concepts from History, Art History, and Cartography an attribute to be added to the essay’s outstanding qualities. We sincerely hope to see a version of this essay published in a peer reviewed journal in the near future."

Final year dissertation, David Nemeth (History) with his dissertation entitled: ‘Navigating society, culture, and religious identity in early modern Pécs, Hungary, according to Evliya Celebi’s Book of Travels (Seyahatname)’. The adjudicators in this category said,

“…(this) is extremely ambitious for an undergraduate thesis: an attempt, by contextualizing Evliya’s Book of Travels, to bring to life the early modern city of Pécs. It is a superior case study, which weaves together social, cultural and religious insights, whilst remaining alive to – and transparent about – the inevitable limitations of the surviving source material. The thesis is well structured and ordered: its central argument is clearly articulated at the outset and there is helpful sign-posting for the reader throughout. Written in an unpretentious style which conveys a genuine enthusiasm for the subject, this thesis is a pleasure to read. The achievement is all the more impressive given that the research and writing took place during a year when – owing to the Covid-19 pandemic – access to libraries and archives was extremely limited and foreign travel all but impossible.”