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Professor Graeme Small

Professor (Late Medieval History)

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Professor (Late Medieval History) in the Department of History  
Associate Director (MA and PG Development) in the Institute of Medieval and Early Modern Studies  


I came to Durham in 2012 after a long spell at Glasgow University, and before that I held posts at Keele, Newcastle uponTyne and Edinburgh, where I was also an undergraduate and postgraduate. I studied French with European History for my first degree, spending my year abroad in Aix-en-Provence, and a gap year before the PhD as a lecteur d’anglais in the English department at Caen. During my doctoral work I enjoyed lengthy periods of research in northern France and Belgium, and although I continue to go back there for my research, I also get the chance to work further afield in France and the Low Countries.

I have supervised doctoral students in a wide range of fields in the later medieval period, including material culture in the Burgundian Netherlands, literary and manuscript sources from the Low Countries, cross-Channel relations during the Hundred Years’ War (using legal and diplomatic sources, among other things), urban history in France and the Burgundian dominions (drawing on town accounts and other municipal records), the history of the court (using Scottish as well as Burgundian sources) and more obviously biographical studies. I also have experience as a secondary supervisor of working with municipal and manuscript sources from other parts of Europe. I have worked with prospective PhD students to write successful grant applications for funding in open competition, winning full awards from the Students Award Agency Scotland, the AHRB/AHRC, the ESRC and the Carnegie Institute for the Universities of Scotland. These experiences stood me in good stead for setting up internal arrangements in my last job to run the AHRC’s Block Grant Partnership awards. Not everyone is interested in an academic job once they have finished the PhD, but for those that are I look to develop a profile that enhances their prospects of success in the market. Five of my PhD students hold or have held university lectureships in History. If you are interested in finding out more about doing doctoral research with me, get in touch using the contact details on this page.

My own research continues to focus on historical and political culture in the Burgundian Low Countries with a particular emphasis on city and court, but I am working increasingly on French material, especially since my last book, and I am interested in urban sources, in particular town council minutes.

Research interests

  • French and Anglo-Norman Vernacular historography 12th-15th centuries
  • Town council minutes 13th-16th centuries (France, Low Countries, British Isles)
  • The historical writings of Johan Huizinga
  • The Valois Burgundian court
  • French political life, 1300-1500

Research groups


Authored book

  • Fronska, Joanna, Wiijsman, Hanno & Small, Graeme (2015). De flamische Bilderchronik Philipps des Schonen/ The Flemish Chronicle of Philip the fair/La Chronique flamande de Phillipe le Beau. Lucerne.
  • Small, Graeme (2009). Late Medieval France. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Small, Graeme & Brown, Andrew (2007). Court and civic society in the Burgundian Low Countries c. 1420-1530. Manchester: MUP.
  • Small, Graeme (1997). George Chastelain and the shaping of Valois Burgundy. Political and historical culture at court in the fifteenth century * NB A paperback edition of this book came out in 2011. Boydell Press.

Chapter in book

  • Small, Graeme (Published). 'Municipal registers of deliberations in the late Middle Ages: cross-Channel comparisons'. In Les idées passent-elles La Manche?. Genet, J.-P. Paris: Presses universitaires de la Sorbonne. 37-66.
  • Small, Graeme (Published). 'Of Burgundian dukes, counts, saints and kings, 14 C.E. - 1500'. In The ideology of Burgundy. Boulton, J. & Veenstra, J. Leiden: Brill. 151-94.
  • Small, Graeme (2020). 'Epilogue: from Herfsttij to Autumntide'. In in Autumntide of the Middle Ages. A study of forms of life and thought of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries in France and the Low Countries. By Johan Huizinga. Small, Graeme, van der Lem, Anton, & translated by Diane Webb Leiden: Leiden University Press. 538-79.
  • Small, Graeme (2019). The Making of the Autumn of the Middle Ages I: Narrative Sources and Their Treatment in Huizinga's Herfsttij. In Rereading Huizinga: Autumn of the Middle Ages, a Century Later. Arnade, Peter & Howell, Martha Amsterdam University Press.
  • Murphy, N. & Small, G. (2018). Town and crown in late fifteenth-century France: Rouen after the Réduction, c. 1449-1493. In La guerre en Normandie (XIe-XVe siècle). Curry,A. & Gazeau, V. Presses universitaires de Caen. 309-331.
  • Dumolyn, J. & Small, G. (2018). Speech acts and political communication in the Estates General of Valois and Habsburg Burgundy, c. 1370-1530. In Political representation. Communities, ideas and institutions in Europe (c. 1200-c.1690). Damen, M., Haemers, J. & Mann, A.J. Brill. 15: 240-266.
  • Small, Graeme (2013). ‘The Scottish court in the fifteenth century: a view from Burgundy’. In La cour de Bourgogne et l’Europe. Le rayonnement et les limites d’un modèle culturel. Paravicini, Werner Thorbecke Jan Verlag. 73: 456-474.
  • Small, Graeme (2007). ‘Robert Campin et la “révolution démocratique” de Tournai: contextes politiques, socio-économiques et culturels’. In Campin in context. Nys, L. & Vanwijnsberghe, D. Valenciennes-Brussels: Presses universitaires de Valenciennes – Institut royale du patrimoine artistique. 43-50.
  • Small, Graeme (2006). ‘Local elites and “national” mythologies in the Burgundian dominions in the fifteenth century’. In Building the past/Konstruktion der eigenen Vergangenheit. Suntrup, R. & Veenstra, J. Frankfurt: Fritz Lang. 229-45.
  • Small, Graeme (2000). 'The centre, the periphery and the problem of power distribution in later medieval France'. In War, government and power in later medieval France. Allmand, C. Liverpool UP. 145-74
  • Small, Graeme (1996). 'Chroniqueurs et culture historique au bas Moyen Âge'. In Valenciennes au Moyen Âge (winning volume, Prix Roger van der Weyden, 1997). Nys, L. & Salamagne, A. Presses universitaires de Valenciennes. 271-96.
  • Small, Graeme (1993). 'Les origines de la ville de Tournai dans les chroniques légendaires du bas moyen âge'. In Les grands siècles de Tournai (12e-15e siècles). Pycke, J. & Dumoulin, J. Tournai/Louvain-la-Neuve: Casterman. 81-113.

Edited book

  • Small, Graeme (2013). Piety and politics in Britain (14th-16th centuries) (Variorum reprints edition of the essays of the late Professor John A.F. Thomson, ).
  • Small, Graeme, Brown, A. & Cauchies, J.-M. (2001). Le héros bourguignon. Épopée et histoire (XIVe-XVIe siècles). Brussels: Centre européen d'études bourguignonnes.

Journal Article

Scholarly Edition

  • Small, Graeme & van der Lem, Anton (orig.) (2020). Autumntide of the Middle Ages. A study of forms of life and thought of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries in France and the Low Countries. By Johan Huizinga [Webb, Diane (translator)] . Leiden: Leiden University Press

Working Paper

Supervision students