Professor Daniel Wakelin

MA, MPhil., PhD. (Camb)

Research and Teaching

Professorial Fellow in English, St Hilda's College
Jeremy Griffiths Professor of Medieval English Palaeography, Faculty of English

Professor Daniel Wakelin is the Jeremy Griffiths Professor of Medieval English Palaeography. He came to Oxford from Cambridge, where he was a student at Trinity Hall, a Junior Research Fellow at St Catharine’s College and then a Fellow and University Lecturer in English at Christ’s College. He has also held visiting positions at universities and libraries in the USA and Canada.

In the Faculty of English, Professor Wakelin primarily teaches Course II, the special medieval options, and the MSt course in English 650-1550. His research focuses on manuscripts and early printed copies of English literature, primarily from the 1100s to the 1500s, especially of humanist and learned literature; everyday pragmatic literacy; Chaucerian traditions; and carols and interludes. His research combines palaeography and codicology with literary criticism in order to recover the creative agency of authors, scribes and readers alike. From 2022-24 he will be on sabbatical, with a Leverhulme Major Research Fellowship, studying creativity in writing as pat of everyday life in medieval England.


Among his recent publications are:

Immaterial Texts in Late Medieval England: Making English Literary Manuscripts, 1400–1500 (Cambridge UP, 2022)

‘A New Age of Photography: ‘DIY Digitization’ in Manuscript Studies’, Anglia, 139 (2021), 71-93

‘Urinals and Hunting Traps: Curating Fifteenth-Century Pragmatic Books’, New Medieval Literatures, 20 (2020), 216-254

with Edward Wilson, ed.,  A Middle English Translation from Petrarch’s ‘Secretum’, EETS os 351 (Oxford UP, 2018)

Designing English: Early Literature on the Page (Bodleian Library, 2017)

Revolting Remedies from the Middle Ages (Bodleian Library, 2017)

‘Not Diane: Writing and the Risk of Error in Chaucerian Classicism’, Exemplaria, 29 (2017), 331-348

‘Thys ys my boke: Imagining the Owner in the Book’, in Mary Flannery and Carrie Griffin, ed., Spaces for Reading (London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2016), 13-33

‘Early Humanism in England c.1440-1490’, in Rita Copeland, ed., The Oxford History of Classical Reception in English Literature: Volume I (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016), 487-513

‘When Scribes Won’t Write: Gaps in Middle English Books’, Studies in the Age of Chaucer, 36 (2014), 249-78

Scribal Correction and Literary Craft: English Manuscripts 1375-1510 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2014). This book was joint winner of the DeLong History Book Prize 2015 for ‘Scribal Correction and Literary Craft: English Manuscripts 1375-1510’ Cambridge University Press, 2014.

‘England: Humanism beyond Weiss’, in David Rundle (ed.), Humanism in Fifteenth-Century Europe (Oxford: SSMLL, 2012), 265-306

‘Caxton’s Exemplar for The Chronicles of England?’, Journal of the Early Book Society, 14 (2011), 55-83

with Alexandra Gillespie, ed., The Production of Books in England 1350–1500 (Cambridge University Press, 2011)

‘Instructing Readers in Late Medieval Poetic Manuscripts’, Huntington Library Quarterly, 73 (2010), 433-52

‘Maked na moore: Editing and Narrative’, Studies in the Age of Chaucer, 32 (2010): 365-73

‘Possibilities for Reading: Classical Translations in Parallel Texts ca. 1520–1558’, Studies in Philology, 105 (2008), 463-486

Humanism, Reading, & English Literature 1430–1530 (Oxford University Press, 2007)

‘William Worcester Writes a History of his Reading’, New Medieval Literatures, 7 (2005), 53-71