T. C. W. Blanning

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Timothy Charles William Blanning, FBA (born 21 April 1942) is a historian and retired academic. Between 1992 and 2009, he was Professor of Modern European History at the University of Cambridge.

Fellow of the British Academy Award granted by the British Academy to leading academics for their distinction in the humanities and social sciences.

Fellowship of the British Academy (FBA) is an award granted by the British Academy to leading academics for their distinction in the humanities and social sciences. There are three kinds of fellowship

  1. Fellows, for scholars resident in the United Kingdom
  2. Corresponding Fellows, for scholars not resident in the UK
  3. Honorary Fellows, an honorary academic title
University of Cambridge University in Cambridge, England, United Kingdom

The University of Cambridge is a collegiate public research university in Cambridge, United Kingdom. Founded in 1209 and granted a Royal Charter by King Henry III in 1231, Cambridge is the second-oldest university in the English-speaking world and the world's fourth-oldest surviving university. The university grew out of an association of scholars who left the University of Oxford after a dispute with the townspeople. The two 'ancient universities' share many common features and are often referred to jointly as 'Oxbridge'. The history and influence of the University of Cambridge has made it one of the most prestigious universities in the world.



Timothy Charles William Blanning was born on 21 April 1942. After attending the King's School in Bruton, he went up to Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts degree and then continuing to complete his doctorate there; his PhD was awarded in 1967. In 1965, he was elected to a research fellowship at Sidney Sussex, and in 1968 was elected to a fellowship there. In the meantime, he was appointed to an assistant lectureship at the University of Cambridge in 1972, being promoted to lecturer four years later. He was promoted again to be Reader in Modern European History in 1987, and was appointed Professor of Modern European History in 1992. He retired in 2009, but remains at Cambridge as an emeritus professor. [1]

Kings School, Bruton independent co-educational secondary school in Bruton, Somerset, England

King's Bruton is an independent fully co-educational secondary day and boarding school based in Bruton, Somerset, England. It was founded in 1519 by Richard FitzJames, and received royal foundation status around 30 years later in the reign of Edward VI. It is a member school of the Headmasters' and Headmistresses' Conference.

Bruton town and parish in Somerset, England

Bruton is a small town, electoral ward, and civil parish in Somerset, England, situated on the River Brue along the A359 between Frome and Yeovil. It is 7 miles south-east of Shepton Mallet, just south of Snakelake Hill and Coombe Hill, 10 miles north-west of Gillingham and 12 miles south-west of Frome in the South Somerset district. The town and electoral ward have a population of 2,907. The parish includes the hamlets of Wyke Champflower and Redlynch.

Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge constituent college of the University of Cambridge

Sidney Sussex College is a constituent college of the University of Cambridge in England. The college was founded in 1596 under the terms of the will of Frances Sidney, Countess of Sussex (1531–1589) and named after its foundress. It was from its inception an avowedly Protestant foundation; "some good and godlie moniment for the mainteynance of good learninge". In her will, Lady Sussex left the sum of £5,000 together with some plate to found a new college at Cambridge University "to be called the Lady Frances Sidney Sussex College". Her executors Sir John Harington and Henry Grey, 6th Earl of Kent, supervised by Archbishop John Whitgift, founded the college seven years after her death.


Blanning's first book, Reform and Revolution in Mainz, 1743–1803 (1974), offered a case study which could examine the German Problem, the idea that modern Germany began moving apart from Western Europe in political and cultural terms; Blanning sought to demonstrate that this process began in the eighteenth century, whereas earlier historians had emphasised the nineteenth century as a more important period. [2] His second book, The French Revolution in Germany: Occupation and Resistance in the Rhineland, 1792–1802, was published in 1983, and the French Revolution was also the subject of Blanning's The Origins of the French Revolutionary Wars (1986), The French Revolution: Aristocrats versus Bourgeois? (1987; a second edition was published in 1998 as The French Revolution: Class War or Culture Clash?) and The French Revolutionary Wars (1996). In the meantime, he turned to the Habsburg monarchy and produced a biography of the Holy Roman Emperor Joseph II in 1994; he has also published biographies of George I (2017) and Frederick the Great of Prussia (2015), [1] the latter of which won the British Academy Medal in 2016. [3]

Electorate of Mainz archdiocese

The Electorate of Mainz, previously known in English as Mentz and by its French name Mayence, was one of the most prestigious and influential states of the Holy Roman Empire. In the Roman Catholic hierarchy, the Archbishop-Elector of Mainz was the Primate of Germany, a purely honorary dignity that was unsuccessfully claimed from time to time by other archbishops. There were only two other ecclesiastical Prince-electors in the Empire: the Electorate of Cologne and the Electorate of Trier.

The Holy Roman Emperor was the ruler of the Holy Roman Empire during the medieval and early modern periods. The title was, almost without interruption, held in conjunction with title of King of Germany throughout the 12th to 18th centuries.

Joseph II, Holy Roman Emperor Holy Roman Emperor

Joseph II was Holy Roman Emperor from August 1765 and sole ruler of the Habsburg lands from November 1780 until his death. He was the eldest son of Empress Maria Theresa and her husband, Emperor Francis I, and the brother of Marie Antoinette. He was thus the first ruler in the Austrian dominions of the House of Lorraine, styled Habsburg-Lorraine. Joseph was a proponent of enlightened absolutism; however, his commitment to modernizing reforms subsequently engendered significant opposition, which resulted in failure to fully implement his programmes. He has been ranked, with Catherine the Great of Russia and Frederick the Great of Prussia, as one of the three great Enlightenment monarchs. His policies are now known as Josephinism. He died with no sons and was succeeded by his younger brother, Leopold II.

Since the early 2000s, Blanning's work has also focused on cultural histories of Europe, beginning in 2002 with his book The Culture of Power and the Power of Culture; this was followed by The Pursuit of Glory: Europe 1648–1815 (2006), The Triumph of Music: Composers, Musicians and Audiences, 1700 to the Present (2008) and The Romantic Revolution (2011). [1]

<i>The Pursuit of Glory</i> book by Tim Blanning

The Pursuit of Glory: Europe 1648–1815, written by the British historian Timothy Blanning, was first published by Allen Lane in 2007. It met with very favourable reviews, was The Sunday Times history book of the year, and was reprinted in paperback by Penguin Books in 2008.


In 1990, Blanning was elected a Fellow of the British Academy (FBA). [4] In September 2016, he was awarded the British Academy Medal for his book Frederick the Great: King of Prussia (2015). [3] Blanning was awarded a Doctor of Letters degree by the University of Cambridge in 1998. [1]

The British Academy Medal is awarded annually by the British Academy to up to three individuals or groups. It is awarded for "outstanding achievement that has transformed understanding of a particular subject or field of study in ... any branch of the humanities and social sciences". It was first awarded in 2013. It is the first medal awarded by the British Academy for any subject within the remit of the academy. According to a reputation survey conducted in 2018, it is the third most prestigious interdisciplinary award in the social sciences, after the Holberg Prize and the Stein Rokkan Prize for Comparative Social Science Research.

Doctor of Letters higher doctorate

Doctor of Letters is an academic degree, a higher doctorate which, in some countries, may be considered to be equal to the Ph.D. and equal to the Doctor of Science. It is awarded in many countries by universities and learned bodies in recognition of achievement in the humanities, original contribution to the creative arts or scholarship and other merits. In some countries it also regarded as the highest degree of education. When awarded without an application by the conferee, it is awarded as an honorary degree.


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  1. 1 2 3 4 "Blanning, Prof. Timothy Charles William", Who's Who (online edition, Oxford University Press, December 2017). Retrieved 17 July 2018.
  2. "Reform and Revolution in Mainz, 1743–1803 ", Cambridge University Press. Retrieved 17 July 2018.
  3. 1 2 "British Academy announces 2016 prizes and medal winners". British Academy. 27 September 2016. Retrieved 30 July 2017.
  4. "Professor Timothy Blanning". British Academy. Retrieved 30 July 2017.