Lucy Havard

History PhD candidate
Lucy Havard

Lucy Havard studied medicine as an undergraduate at University College London (UCL), graduating in 2013. She always enjoyed studying history and intercalated in History of Medicine at the Wellcome Library in London. She was awarded first class honours for her intercalated BSc in 2010. After working full-time as a medical doctor for four years, she decided to pursue her interest in history further, undertaking a Masters in History and Philosophy of Science at UCL. She was awarded a distinction in 2018. She began the Early Modern History MPhil at the University of Cambridge in 2019. Supervised by Dr Emma Spary and Dr Melissa Calaresu, her thesis combined the study of material culture together with a novel spatial approach and the technique of historical reconstruction to explore how the layout, architecture and contents of the early modern kitchen furthered the acquisition of knowledge. She was awarded a distinction in 2020. Lucy is currently a third year PhD candidate at Gonville and Caius College supervised by Dr Melissa Calaresu and Professor Alexandra Walsham. Her thesis builds on her MPhil research to examine the early modern home as a space for knowledge-making, arguing that the quotidian activities essential to run the household were foundational in the development of modern science. 

Lucy's academic interests include food history, material culture, early modern science and the history of domestic spaces. Her previous work includes research on early modern food preservation practices and the early modern kitchen published in Notes and Records and Cultural and Social History. Lucy was a convenor of the Cambridge Body and Food Histories Group from 2018-2021. This research group ran regular seminars, reading groups and annual conferences. Their last conference was entitled ''The Ideal Body': Perceptions of Perfection from Early Modernity to the Present'.

Lucy has extensive experience in teaching, both in medicine and history. Whilst working as a doctor she undertook a MSc in Medical Education and has supervised final year medical students at Cambridge from Newnham College, Churchill College and Girton College. During her PhD, she has supervised third year history students (Material culture in the early modern world, Paper 14). For the past two years, Lucy has been involved in an outreach programme run by Gonville and Caius College designed to give sixth-formers interested in applying to Cambridge an introduction to the supervision style of teaching. She has supervised groups of students interested in applying to study history and medicine. She has taught on the Worshipful Society of Apothecaries History of Medicine Course and has presented her research at various conferences nationally and internationally. Her Twitter handle is @lucyjanehavard.

- Cabinet of Natural History, Cambridge HPS Department – ‘Domestic Frontispieces, Recipe Books and the Knowledge of the Early Modern Home, 1600-1800’, November 2022.

Institute of Advanced Studies, UCL – ‘Scientific Knowledge Production in the Early Modern Home’, London, in-person presentation, July 2022.

Worshipful Society of Apothecaries – “The Largest and the Best”: A symposium to mark the 150th anniversary of the Society of Apothecaries’ laboratories, ‘The kitchen as laboratory: medical and scientific knowledge production in the early modern home, 1700-1850’, poster presentation, May 2022.

Open Cambridge Festival – Edible England, ‘Making Marmalade’: Culinary Knowledge in the Early Modern Kitchen, online presentation, September 2021.

- 2nd EUI Conference in Visual and Material Culture Studies – Scandalous Feasts and Holy Meals: Food in Medieval and Early Modern Societies, ‘Considering the Kitchen: Culinary Knowledge in the Early Modern Home’, Florence, May 2021.

- Institute of Historical Research Food History Seminar, ‘‘Domestic Knowledge’ in the Early Modern Recipe Book’, London, January 2020.

History of Science, Technology & Medicine Network of Ireland (HSTM) Conference, ‘Preserving Practices in the Early Modern Kitchen,’ Queen’s University Belfast, October 2018.

- Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities (CRASSH) – Encountering Knowledge: Geographies, Concepts and Materials from the Early Modern Period to the Present, ‘Domestic Knowledge-Making in the Early Modern Kitchen’, University of Cambridge, September 2018.


Tags & Themes


Key publications

Lucy J Havard, '‘Preserve or Perish': Food Preservation Practices in the Early Modern Home’, Notes and Records 74 (2020): 5–33,

Lucy J Havard, '‘Almost to Candy Height': Knowledge-Making in the Early Modern Kitchen, 1700-1850’, Cultural and Social History 19, no. 2 (15 March 2022): 119–39,

Lucy J Havard, ‘Mrs Mary Chantrell (Fl. 1690): Book of Receipts (1690-1693)’, in Women in the History of Science: A Sourcebook, ed. Hannah Wills et al. (London: UCL Press, 2023), 96–105,

Lucy J Havard, review of A Culture of Curiosity: Science in the Eighteenth-Century Home in Reviews in History, (review no. 2480) DOI: 10.14296/RiH/2014/2480.

Lucy J Havard, '‘The Experimental Kitchen’: Knowledge-Making Activities in the Seventeenth-Century English Home, 1700-1850’, in Maker Space: Creative Environments in Early Modern Europe, ed. Colin Murray, Sophie Pitman, and Tianna Helena Uchacz (New York: Bard Graduate Centre, expected publication date July 2024).

Lucy J Havard, '‘A Cake the Lady Anselys Way': The Complexities of Information Acquisition, Transfer and Authorship in Early Modern English Recipes’, in Culinary Texts in Context, 1500-1800: Manuscript Recipe Books in Early Modern Europe, ed. Sarah Peters Kernan and Helga Muellneritsch (Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, expected publication date July 2024).