• Alastair Bellany
  • Alastair Bellany
  • Professor of History
  • Degree: Ph.D., Princeton University B.A. (First Class Honours), Oxford University
  • Rutgers : At Rutgers Since 1996
  • Specialty: Early Modern British Isles: Political and Media History, Climate and Environmental History
  • Office: 101B Van Dyck Hall
  • Phone: 848-932-8542


My research to date has focused primarily on the political culture of early modern England and on the cultural origins of the English Revolution. This work has included an array of publications on news, media, and the political public sphere, on popular politics and political agency, on the interplay between early modern politics, literature and visual culture, on poison and medicine, and on the scandalous images of early Stuart court favorites. I am currently completing a textbook for Oxford University Press on the history of the Britannic Isles from prehistory to 1715, which has spun off an essay project on the politics of mid- and late- seventeenth-century antiquarian interpretations of Stonehenge. I am also beginning a major new project on late medieval and early modern climate history, tentatively titled “Looking for the Little Ice Age”, while continuing to work on a small book that explores the history of song through a socio-cultural analysis of a late Stuart hanging ballad and its migrations through various English and American afterlives.



  • 510:231 A History of the Britannic Isles
  • 510:245 SAS Signature Course, The Arts of Power: Ritual, Myth and Propaganda from the Emperor Augustus to the Age of Wikileaks
  • 510:248 Histories of the Little Ice Age
  • 510:342 Reformation England, 1485-1603
  • 510:344 Revolutionary England, 1603-1714
  • 510:345 The English Revolution, 1640-60
  • Byrne First Year Seminars: "How to Read a Verse Libel"; "My name It is Jack Hall: Transatlantic Histories of a Hanging Ballad"; and "From Gallows Tree to Lethal Injection: Capital Punishment in Historical Perspective"


  • 510:603 Colloquium in Early Modern British History
  • 510:597 PDR in Early Modern European History



  • The Murder of King James I, (Yale UP: New Haven and London, 2015), co-written with Thomas Cogswell
  • The Politics of Court Scandal In Early Modern England: News Culture and the Overbury Affair, 1603-1660, (Cambridge UP: Cambridge, 2002).
  • Early Stuart Libels: An Edition of Poetry from Manuscript Sources (Early Modern Literary Studies: Texts Series I (2005)), co-edited with Andrew McRae
  • "Thinking With Poison", in Malcolm Smuts (ed.). The Oxford Handbook of the Age of Shakespeare (Oxford, 2016)
  • “Libel”, in Joad Raymond (ed.), The Oxford History of Popular Print Culture (Oxford UP: Oxford, 2011)
  • “Buckingham Engraved: Politics, Print Images and the Royal Favourite in the 1620s”, in Michael Hunter (ed.), Printed Images in Early Modern Britain (Ashgate: Farnham and Burlington, 2010)
  • “The Murder of John Lambe: Crowd Violence, Court Scandal and Popular Politics in Early Seventeenth Century England”, Past and Present 200 (2008)
  • “‘Naught But Illusion’?: Buckingham’s Painted Selves”, in Kevin Sharpe and Steven Zwicker (eds.), Writing Lives: Biography and Textuality, Identity and Representation in Early Modern England (Oxford, 2008)
  • “Railing Rhymes Revisited: Libels, Scandal and Early Stuart Politics”, History Compass 5:4 (2007).


  • 2017: Rutgers University Board of Trustees Award for Excellence in Research
  • 2016: Co-winner, Book Prize of the Pacific Coast Conference on British Studies (for The Murder of King James I)
  • 2012: ACLS Collaborative Research Fellowship (held during 2013)
  • 2009: Seminar Director, Folger Institute, Folger Shakespeare Library
  • 2003: Rutgers University Board of Trustees' Fellowship for Scholarly Excellence
  • 2000: Rutgers University FAS Award for Distinguished Contribution to Undergraduate Education
  • 1994: Whiting Fellowship
  • 1987: Brackenbury Scholarship, Balliol College, Oxford


  • AHA
  • North American Conference on British Studies
  • NACBS Program Committee 2015-17
  • General Editor, series on Politics, Culture and Society in Early Modern Britain, Manchester University Press