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Fred Smith

Research Interests

I am a 2nd year PhD student, supervised by Professor Alexandra Walsham, working on English Catholic exiles from the reigns of Henry VIII and Edward VI. My research explores the ways in which these emigres' experience of displacement and dislocation, as well as their contact with Catholics from throughout Europe, affected the development of their religious beliefs. Through investigating the influential roles many of these exiles went on to fulfill after their return home during the reign of Mary I, this project seeks to reconnect the history of mid-Tudor English Catholicism to the religious history of the continent and the rest of the British Isles.

More broadly I am interested in the identities and experiences of marginalised religious groups of all confessional stripes during the English Reformations of the 16th and early 17th centuries, and the ways in which historians have remembered and, more usually, forgotten such groups.


I offer supervisions in the following papers in Part I of the Historical Tripos:

Part I: Paper 4 - British political history, 1485-1714

Part I: Paper 9 - British economic and social history, c. 1500-1750

Other Professional Activities

Lead Convenor of the Gender and Sexuality History Graduate Workshop 2016-17

Organiser of the 2017 Cambridge AHRC DTP International Conference on "Tradition and Transformation", 18-20 September 2017, Emmanuel College, Cambridge

Co-Editor of Doing History in Public.


  • Early Modern History

Key Publications

'Life after Exile: Former English Catholic Exiles and the Legacy of Flight in Marian England', English Historical Review (forthcoming, August 2018)

'The Origins of Recusancy in Elizabethan England Reconsidered', The Historical Journal, 60 (2017), pp. 301-332 (DOI: