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Dr Luca Zenobi

Dr Luca Zenobi

Junior Research Fellow, Trinity College

Luca Zenobi is available for consultancy.

Trinity College, Trinity St
Cambridge CB2 1TQ


I am a historian of late medieval and Renaissance Europe, specialising in the political and social history of the Italian Quattrocento. I was recently awarded my doctorate (DPhil) from the University of Oxford, where I held the Hugh Trevor-Roper Graduate Scholarship in History. Previously, I studied History (BA) and Historical Sciences (MA) at the University of Milan, and qualified as archivist and palaeographer following the two-year postgraduate course of the Italian state archives. In April 2019, I took up a four-year research fellowship at Trinity College.

Research Interests

Situated primarily in Italy, my work investigates the spatial dimension of political and social life. I am especially interested in how political cultures (ideas, discourses) and social structures (institutions, networks) shaped and were shaped by space, and how this influenced the lives of groups and individuals.

For my doctorate, I investigated the world of borders in fifteenth-century northern Italy: how they were drawn, crossed and imagined; and what they can tell us about the spatial fabric of political and social life in the later middle ages. While revising my thesis for publication, I am now developing a new research project: inspired by my doctoral work on borders as sites of movement and control, the project will explore the role played by mobility in shaping power and social relations in Renaissance Europe.

Other interests include: environmental history, and especially the long history of rivers and mountain ranges; the cultural history of cartography and record-keeping; the application of digital methods (GIS, SNA) and new relational approaches (entangled history, histoire croisée) to the study of the past; and the interdisciplinary connections between history and the social sciences (notably political geography and social theory).

Research Supervision

I welcome inquiries from students interested in the history of late medieval and Renaissance Italy.


  • Part I, Paper 14: European History, ca. 900 – 1450
  • Part I, Paper 16: European History, ca. 1450 – 1760


  • European History

Key Publications

I have written articles and book chapters on a range of topics: the process of community- and territory-making, the spatial organisation of factions and family militias, and – more recently – the experience of migration, exile and displacement. I am also the co-editor of two forthcoming special issues: 'Movement and Urban Space in Early Modern Europe' (The Journal of Early Modern History) and 'Fiction and Disinformation in the Early Modern World' (Past & Present). My first book, titled 'Borders and the Politics of Space in Late Medieval Italy', will soon be published by Oxford University Press.