Fellow: Awarded 1977
Field of Study: U.S. History
Competition: US & Canada
David Cressy is an historian of early modern Britain, interested in the society, culture, politics, and religion of England and the English-speaking world from the late fifteenth to the early eighteenth century. Born at Isleworth, Middlesex (4 April 1946), and educated at Latymer Upper School, London (1957–1963) and Clare College, Cambridge (1963–1970), he holds four degrees from the University of Cambridge, including Ph.D. (1973) and D. Litt. (2000). Cressy has spent most of his career in the United States, and is a naturalized citizen. Now George III Professor of British History and Humanities Distinguished Professor of History Emeritus at the Ohio State University, he has held visiting fellowships at Magdalen, St. Catherine’s, and All Souls College, Oxford, and Clare Hall and Churchill College, Cambridge, and at universities and research libraries in Australia, New Zealand, and the United States. He is married to Valerie Cressy, since 1966, and has two grown sons.
Cressy’s publications include Literacy and the Social Order: Reading and Writing in Tudor and Stuart England (Cambridge University Press, 1980); Coming Over: Migration and Communication between England and New England in the Seventeenth Century (Cambridge, 1987); Bonfires and Bells: National Memory and the Protestant Calendar in Elizabethan and Stuart England (Weidenfeld and Nicolson/ University of California Press, 1989); Religion and Society in Early Modern England (with Lori Anne Ferrell, Routledge, 1996; 2nd. edn. 2005); Birth, Marriage and Death: Ritual, Religion and the Life Cycle in Tudor and Stuart England (Oxford University Press, 1997; winner of the Snow Prize, North American Conference on British Studies, and the Schaff Prize, American Society for Church History); Travesties and Transgressions in Tudor and Stuart England: Tales of Discord and Dissension (Oxford, 2000), republished as Agnes Bowker's Cat: Travesties and Transgressions in Tudor and Stuart England (Oxford, 2001); Society and Culture in Early Modern England (Ashgate, 2003); England on Edge: Crisis and Revolution 1640–1642 (Oxford, 2006); Dangerous Talk: Scandalous, Seditious and Treasonable Speech in Pre-Modern England (Oxford, 2010); and Saltpeter, the Mother of Gunpowder (Oxford, 2013). Work in progress includes Charles I and the People of England and Trouble with Gypsies. Driving these works is Cressy’s curiosity about the relationships of central and local authority, elite and popular culture, official and unofficial religion, and ordinary men and women, a curiosity that ranges from kinship to book-burning, from cross-dressing to the man in the moon.