PhD Studentship: Elizabeth I and Mary, Queen of Scots, 1560-1587

University of Kent - History

This AHRC CDP award is jointly supervised between the British Library and the University of Kent’s Centre for Medieval and Early Modern Studies.

Relations between Elizabeth I of England and her Scottish cousin, Mary, Queen of Scots, have excited considerable scholarly interest. Yet, historical coverage is patchy and relations between the two Queens are often discussed in a vacuum, isolated from broader diplomatic and cross-border interactions.

Whilst broadening their view from this traditional approach, we anticipate that the successful candidate will shape the project depending on their own skills and interests. However, we have an especial interest in projects exploring the flow of information across the Anglo-Scots border and the growth in political commentary and propaganda produced in Scotland in this period.

We also anticipate the PhD research will explicitly seek to redress the prevalent Anglo-centric bias in the historiography.

Working in the BL’s Cotton collections and elsewhere the student will have considerable autonomy to develop the project based on archival discoveries.

The student will have the opportunity to contribute to a major BL exhibition on Elizabeth I and Mary, Queen of Scots with opportunities for public engagement.

The successful applicant will have staff-level access to the BL collections and skill-specific training opportunities.

This is one of two scholarships offered, suitably qualified candidates may apply to both.


UK/EU nationals who meet the Research Council residency criteria welcome to apply.  

For details of the residency criteria please refer to the Research Council Handbook (Section 6/44-46). If you are unsure about your eligibility please email and we will be happy to make an assessment for you.

Academic Criteria:

Applicants are required to hold a Bachelors Degree at 2:1 or better in a relevant subject, and hold or are expected to hold a Master’s degree in a relevant subject by September 2018.

Expected Start Date: 1 October 2018

Award Components and Value:

Stipend at AHRC rate (£14,777  for 2018/19, plus an additional £550 for Collaborative Doctoral Students, plus fees, plus up to £1,000 per annum from the British Library for research-related costs and staff-level access to the British Library’s collections, expertise and facilities.

Closing Date for Applications: Tuesday 8 May 2018, 12:00 (midday, London time).

Names of supervisors:

Dr Amy Blakeway (Lecturer in History, University of Kent).

Dr Andrea Clarke (Lead Curator Medieval & Early Modern Manuscripts, British Library).

Entry Requirements:

The successful candidate will have an excellent BA Honours degree, or equivalent qualification. The candidate will have, or be studying for a Master’s Degree in a relevant subject (e.g.: History, Early Modern History, Early Modern Studies, Early Modern/Renaissance literature). They should have prior experience working with early modern/late medieval manuscripts.

Essential: excellent sixteenth-century palaeography.

Desirable: French and/or Latin.

Informal Enquiries:

Dr Amy Blakeway,

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