Dr Tom Asbridge
Reader in Medieval History
Email: email@example.comTelephone: +44 (0)20 7882 8343Room Number: ArtsTwo 4.06
I studied for a BA in Ancient and Medieval History at Cardiff University, and then undertook doctoral research on the early history of the ‘crusader’ principality of Antioch at Royal Holloway, University of London.
I then taught at St Andrews and the University of Reading, before joining Queen Mary in 1999.
I am a medieval historian specialising in the study of the crusades, knighthood and chivalry, and medieval violence. My major publications include The Crusades – The War for the Holy Land (link is external)(2010), which so far has been translated into eight different languages, and a biography of the influential medieval knight William Marshal titled The Greatest Knight (link is external) (2015). My current research explores whether the violence enacted during the crusades was more extreme than that witnessed in other forms of medieval warfare.
- Medieval history
- Crusades & the Crusader States
- Medieval Knighthood
- Medieval Violence
- The Greatest Knight: The Remarkable Life of William Marshal, the Power Behind Five English Thrones (link is external) (London: Simon & Schuster, 2015), pp. 1-464). Other editions of this work already published: US Edition – New York: Ecco Press, HarperCollins, 2014; German Translation – Stuttgart: Klett-Cotta. Forthcoming editions of this work in press: Mandarin Translation – Bejing: Gingko Book; Russian Translation – Moscow: Centrepolygraph.
- The Crusades: The War for the Holy Land (link is external)(London: Simon & Schuster, 2010), pp. 1-784. A second edition of this book was reprinted with a new forward in the UK in 2012. Other editions of this work already published: US Edition – New York: Ecco Press, HarperCollins; Dutch Translation – Amsterdam: Het Spectrum; German Translation - Stuttgart: Klett-Cotta; Romanian translation – Iasi: Polirom; Danish Translation – Copenhagen, People’s Press. Forthcoming editions of this work: Spanish Translation – Barcelona: Edhasa; Russian Translation – Moscow: Centrerpolygraph.
- The First Crusade: A New History (link is external) (UK Edition: London: Free Press, Simon & Schuster, 2004), pp. 1-408. US Edition: The First Crusade: A New History. The roots of conflict between Christianity and Islam (New York: Oxford University Press, 2004). Dutch edition: De Eerste Kruistocht: De oorsprong van het conflict tusen Islam en Christendom (Amsterdam: Athenaeum – Polak & Van Gennep, 2006). Polish edition: Pierwsza Krucjata: Nowe Sporjzenie (Poznan: Rebis, 2006).
- The creation of the principality of Antioch 1098-1130 (link is external) (Woodbridge: Boydell, 2000), pp. 1-272.
- Walter the Chancellor’s ‘The Antiochene Wars’: A translation & commentary (link is external)(Aldershot: Ashgate, 1999), pp. 1-230. Co-authored with S.B. Edgington.
- Thomas Abridge, 'An Experiment in Extremity: The Portrayal of Violence in Robert the Monk's Narrative of the First Crusade', History 105 (2020), pp. 719-50.
- ‘William of Tyre and the first rulers of the Latin principality of Antioch’, Deeds Done Beyond the Sea: William of Tyre, Crusade and Settlement, ed. S.B. Edgington & H. Nicholson (Aldershot: Ashgate, 2014), pp. 35-42.
- ‘Bohemond of Taranto and the foundation of the principality of Antioch’, Convegno IX centenario morte Boemondo I d’Altavilla, ed. C.D. Fonseca (Canosa di Puglia, 2014), pp.134-50.
- 'How the crusades could have been won: King Baldwin II of Jerusalem’s campaigns against Aleppo (1124-5) and Damascus (1129)’, Journal of Medieval History, vol. 11 (2013), pp. 73-93.
- ‘Talking to the Enemy: The role and purpose of negotiations between Saladin and Richard the Lionheart during the Third Crusade’, Journal of Medieval History, vol. 39 (2013).
- ‘The principality of Antioch and the early history of the Latin East’, East and West in the Medieval Eastern Mediterranean II, ed. K. Ciggaar & V. Van Aalst (Wilsele: Peeters, January 2013).
- ‘The Holy Lance of Antioch: Power, devotion and memory on the First Crusade’, Reading Medieval Studies, vol. 33 (2007), pp. 3-36.
- ‘Knowing the Enemy: Latin relations with Islam at the time of the First Crusade’, Knighthoods of Christ, ed. N. Housley (Aldershot: Ashgate, 2007), pp. 17-25.
- ‘Alice of Antioch: a case study of female power in the twelfth century’, The Experience of Crusading: Defining the Crusader Kingdom, ed. P. Edbury and J. Phillips (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2003), pp. 29-47.
- ‘The impact of Islam and Byzantium upon the crusader community at Antioch’, Transactions of the Royal Historical Society, 6th series, vol. 9 (1999), pp. 305-325.
- ‘The significance and causes of the battle of the Field of Blood’, Journal of Medieval History, vol. 24.3 (1997), pp. 301-316.
- ‘The Jabal as-Summaq and the principality of Antioch’, The First Crusade: Origins and Impact, ed. J. Phillips (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1997), pp. 142-152.
- Online Historiographical Database for Crusader Studies (link is external)
I welcome applications from candidates wishing to undertake doctoral research on any field of medieval history, with particular reference to:
- military and religious history
- the crusades and the crusader states
- knighthood and chivalry
Current PHD Students
- Belinda Guthrie – There's no room for the perfect knight in Jerusalem': The Portrayal of Knights during the Era of the Crusades
I am currently engaged in a number of projects that disseminate the findings of my research. These include:
- Co-curating a major exhibition to commemorate the 1217 Battle of Lincoln with The Collection, Lincoln and Lincoln Cathedral.
- Founding and running the Teaching the Crusades Network, which brings together school teachers and academic specialists
- Developing a number of digital humanities projects exploring crusading history and the life of William Marshal