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Mr Scott Mandelbrote

Fellow, Director of Studies in History, and Perne Librarian, Peterhouse

Cambridge CB2 1RD

Departments and Institutes


Research Interests

Early modern intellectual history, particularly the history of scholarship and the history of science. Current projects include a study of the interpretation of the Septuagint (the Greek Old Testament) in Early Modern Europe and work on the international reception of the thought and writings of Isaac Newton.

Research Supervision

Early modern British and European intellectual history.

Recent students have written M.Phil. or Ph.D. dissertations on Thomas Hobbes and Francis Bacon; Elias Ashmole and the Uses of Antiquity; The Intellectual Biography of John Wallis; Natural Philosophy in the English Universities, 1500-1570; The Role of Witchcraft in the Experimental Philosophy of Robert Boyle; Perceptions of Extraordinary Natural Events and their Meanings in England, 1692-1750; Renegades to the Ottoman Empire and their Impact in the Early Modern Period; Corpuscular Chymistry and the English Fossil Debate, 1660-1681; The Reception of the Work of Thomas Willis; Civil Religion and the Hebrew Republic in Spinoza's Theory of Toleration; The Transatlantic Culture of Benefaction in the Colonial American College Library; The Dutch Church at Austin Friars and the English Church in Amsterdam; Marsilio Ficino's commentary on Proclus; The Reception of the Writings of Giovanni Pico della Mirandola in England; John Locke, Judaism and Islam; Henri Estienne and Herodotus; John Evelyn's History of Chalcography; The Library of the 'Theophrastus Redivivus'; Sir John Marsham and the Historiography of the Ancient World; The Reception of John Chrysostom, 1417-1588; Conrad Peutinger and the Eucharist; Health and Diet in 1650s English Medical and Theological Writing; The Vernacular Reception of Augustine in Early Modern England; Montaigne and Philosophical Concord.


I offer a course on the history of the book to students for the Early Modern M.Phil. and supervise undergraduates for papers in British History, European History, and Political Thought in Part I and for two Specified Subjects in Part II ('The Politics of Knowledge from the Late Renaissance to the Early Enlightenment' and 'Print and Society in Early Modern England').

Other Professional Activities

Co-Director, The Bible and Antiquity in Nineteenth-Century Culture, based at CRASSH.

Editorial director, The Newton Project, currently based at the University of Oxford.

General Editor, publications of the Oxford Bibliographical Society.


  • Early Modern History

Key Publications

‘Witches and Forgers: Anthonie van Dale on Biblical History and the Authority of the Septuagint’, in D. van Miert et al. (eds), Scriptural Authority and Biblical Criticism in the Dutch Golden Age (Oxford University Press, 2017), pp. 270-306.

‘The Old Testament and its Ancient Versions in Manuscript and Print in the West, from c. 1480 to c. 1780’, in E. Cameron (ed.), The New Cambridge History of the Bible. Volume Three (Cambridge University Press, 2016), pp. 82-109.

(ed. with Joanna Weinberg), Jewish Books and their Readers: Aspects of the Intellectual Life of Christians and Jews in Early Modern Europe (Leiden: Brill, 2016).

‘When Manuscripts Meet: Editing the Bible in Greek during and after the Council of Trent’, in A. Blair and A.-S. Goejing (eds), For the Sake of Learning: Essays in Honor of Anthony Grafton (Leiden: Brill, 2016), pp. 251-67.

‘Newton and Eighteenth-Century Christianity’, in R. Iliffe and G. Smith (eds), The Cambridge Companion to Newton, 2nd edition (Cambridge University Press, 2016), pp. 554-85. 

‘“The Doors shall fly open”: Chronology and Biblical Interpretation in England, c.  1630-c. 1730’, in K. Killeen, H. Smith, and  R. Willie (eds), The Oxford Handbook of the Bible in Early Modern England (Oxford University Press, 2015), pp. 176-95.

‘The Publication and Illustration of Robert Morison’s Plantarum Historiae Universalis Oxoniensis’, Huntington Library Quarterly, 78 (2015), 349-79.

(ed. with M. Ledger-Lomas), Dissent and the Bible in Britain, c. 1650-1950 (Oxford University Press, 2013).

(ed. with J.H.R. Davis), The Warden's Punishment Book of All Souls College, Oxford, 1601-1850 (Woodbridge:Boydell Press for the Oxford Historical Society, 2013).

'The Learned Press: Geography, Science, and Mathematics' (with V. Feola) and 'The Bible Press', both in I. Gadd (ed.), The History of Oxford University Press, Volume One: Beginnings to 1780 (Oxford University Press, 2013), pp. 308-49 and 480-509.

'Early Modern Natural Theologies', in Russell Re Manning (ed.), The Oxford Handbook to Natural Theology (Oxford University Press, 2013), pp. 75-99.

'Isaac Vossius and the Septuagint', in E. Jorink and D. van Miert (eds), Isaac Vossius (1618-1689) between Science and Scholarship (Leiden: E.J. Brill, 2012), pp. 85-117.

'“Bondage in Babylon”: The Bible, Freedom of Conscience, and Ideas of Civil Liberty in England, c. 1640- c. 1750', in C. Bultmann and L. Danneberg (eds), Hebraistik—Hermeneutik—Homiletik. Die >>Philologia Sacra<< im frühneuzeitlichen Bibelstudium (Berlin: W. de Gruyter, 2011), pp. 469-97.

'Origen against Jerome in Early Modern Europe', in S.-P. Bergjan and K. Pollmann (eds), Patristic Tradition and Intellectual Paradigms in the Seventeenth Century (Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2010), pp. 105-35.

'The Library of Peterhouse, Cambridge, and the Problem of the Spatial Arrangement of Knowledge during the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries', in R. Felfe and K. Wagner(eds), Museum, Bibliothek, Stadtraum. Räumliche Wissensordnungen 1600-1900 (Berlin: Lit Verlag, 2010), pp. 23-76.

Codrington's Benefactions (Oxford: All Souls College, 2010).

(ed. with J. van der Meer), Nature and Scripture in the Abrahamic Religions, 4 vols. (Leiden: Brill, 2008).

‘English Scholarship and the Greek Text of the Old Testament, 1620-1720: The Impact of Codex Alexandrinus’, in A. Hessayon and N. Keene (eds), Scripture and Scholarship in Early Modern England (Aldershot: Ashgate, 2006), pp. 74-93.

Donors of Books to Peterhouse (Cambridge: Rampant Lions Press, 2005).

(ed. with M. Pelling), The Practice of Reform in Health, Medicine and Science, 1500-2000 (Aldershot: Ashgate, 2005).

(ed.), Newton and Newtonianism, special issue of Studies in History of Philosophy of Science, Vol. 35A.3, September 2004, pp. 415-680.

Footprints of the Lion: Isaac Newton at Work (Cambridge: Cambridge University Library, 2001).

(with J. Bennett), The Garden, the Ark, the Tower, the Temple. Biblical Metaphors of Knowledge in Early Modern Europe (Oxford: Bodleian Library, 1998).