Professor Martyn Rady
Professor of Central European History
020 7679 8807
020 7679 8777
I have lived in London nearly all my life and was an undergraduate at (the now defunct) Westfield College, University of London. I went on to complete a PhD at SSEES and a PGCE at Cambridge, and spent most of the 1980s teaching history and politics at Mill Hill School in North London. My first book, Medieval Buda, was published in 1985. It was followed by half a dozen books designed for schoolchildren that are now considerably over-used by undergraduates.
I have been teaching at SSEES since 1989 where I am Professor of Central European History. I was head of the SSEES History Department from 2003 to 2008 and have been involved in one way or another as editor of the Slavonic and East European Review since 1998. My main interest is the history of the Habsburg Monarchy and of Hungary in particular, but I have also written on Romanian, British, Bulgarian and Austrian history. I cover most periods in terms both of my teaching and of my research and writing. Although I have published predominantly on the Middle Ages, my best known books are on 20th century Romania and Emperor Charles V. My most numerous undergraduate lecture-course (if only because it is compulsory) looks at European and world history from the Bronze Age to the industrial revolution, via Ming China, the American West and ancient Mesopotamia.
My current research is on Hungarian and Central European legal history. I recently co-edited and co-translated the principal Hungarian legal text for the period up to 1848, and am working as part of a team on an edition of Hungary's laws, 1490-1526. I hope over the next few years to write a book on the history of Hungarian law, provisionally entitled 'The Making of the Customary Law Tradition in Hungary'.
In 2008 I published an edited volume on the history of revolution and resistance in Central Europe with special reference to 1956. This was the fifth collection of essays that I have edited on Hungarian and East European history. Over the last few years I have been increasingly involved not only with the translation of legal texts but also with the translation of other sources for the history of Central Europe. I am currently translating from the Latin the 'Chronicle of the Hungarians' written around 1200 by 'the Anonymus' and a rough draft is linked below. I am also writing a short book on the history of Corfu.
Teaching and supervision
I teach three undergraduate courses: 'Introduction to European History', 'History of the Habsburg Monarchy 1700-1918', and 'Crown, Church and Estates in Central Europe, 1500-1700'. MA students wishing to follow a course in Central European history are invited to suggest a topic that I may (or may not!) choose to teach as a 'directed reading course'. My MA 'default option' is the history of the Habsburg monarchy, 1526-1918.
I am prepared to supervise any serious MPhil/PhD student in respect of aspects of Central European history or, indeed, aspects of European history as a whole. Previous research students have completed PhD theses under my supervision on interwar Hungarian politics, interwar Austrian identity, and Greek foreign policy after 1945. I currently have research students studying agricultural reform in early nineteenth-century Hungary and late medieval Czech history.
The Gesta Hungarorum of Anonymus
This page last modified
Tuesday 25 May 2010.