The Book of Pontiffs in the Renaissance

I will be speaking at the international conference “The Book of Pontiffs in the Renaissance / Der Liber Pontificalis – ein Schlüsseldokument europäischer Geschichte”, Vatican City, 21-24 November 2018.

My paper is entitled: “The Book of Pontiffs in the Renaissance: Platina, Panvinio and their Critics”


For a complete programme see

and for a PDF flyer





Interdisciplinarity in early modern studies

I will be speaking at the symposium:

Interdisciplinarity in early modern studies: the state of the question

University of Hull, 15 June 2018




Modern Europe meets Reform

University of Leeds, Room 1.08 Parkinson Building
Woodhouse Lane – Leeds
Date / time  12 April – 13 April

2:00 pm – 5:00 pm

‘Modern Europe meets Reform’ is a workshop that aims to investigate the development of historical writing about the medieval church across the period from the Reformation to the twentieth century. We hope this will bring together medievalists and modernists and create new areas for debate. Confirmed speakers include: Stefan Bauer (York), Joshua Bennett (Oxford), Julian Fuehrer (Zurich), Daniel-Odon Hurel (CNRS Paris), Stephen Taylor (Durham) and Nicholas Vincent (UEA).

I (Stefan Bauer) will speak about “Onofrio Panvinio’s view of Gregory VII in his history of papal elections (1558-1563)”.

Modern Europe meets Reform’ is part of a larger international project entitled ‘Rethinking Reform 900-1150: Conceptualising Change in Medieval Religious Institutions’, funded by the Leverhulme Trust. It brings together scholars from across Europe to focus on how changes in medieval churches were understood and explained in their own day and on how they have been reinterpreted in post-Reformation and especially post-Napoleonic historical writing.

The project is co-ordinated by the University of Leeds (UK), with partners from UEA, Paris VIII, Mainz, KU Leuven, Durham and Ghent. Over the years 2016-19 the project will run four workshops and a final conference to allow discussion of various aspects of the main theme. Workshops in January and September 2017, held respectively at York and KU Leuven, gave groups of scholars the chance to reflect on the choice of vocabulary used to define change between the early middle ages and the twelfth century and also the ways in which medieval institutions and individuals created narratives of change.

The fourth workshop will be held at the University of Mainz in September 2018 and a final conference will be held at Ghent University April 2019. Please contact Dr Ceri Pitches ( for further details.

Download the conference programme here: MEmR (Leeds) Programme


Thursday 12 April 2018

1.30pm – 2.15pm Registration in the Grant Room, Michael Sadler Building (with tea/coffee and cake)

2.15pm – 2.30pm Welcome and Introduction: Julia Barrow, University of Leeds

2.30pm – 3.00pm Paper 1: Stefan Bauer, University of York: Onofrio Panvinio’s view of Gregory VII in his history of papal elections (1558- 1563)

3.00pm – 3.30pm Paper 2: Gianmarco Giuliani, SNS Pisa/EPHE Paris: Reformatio or Restauratio? Cardinal Baronius and the rehabilitation of Gregory VII’s status in the XI volume of the Annales Ecclesiastici

3.30pm – 4.00pm Discussion of Papers 1 & 2

Treasures of the Brotherton

4.00pm – 5.30pm Special exhibition of books from Brotherton Special Collections – with panel members available for interpretation & discussion

Friday 13 April 2018

9.30am – 10.00am Arrival & tea/coffee (Grant Room, Michael Sadler Building)

Parkinson 1.08

10.00am – 10.30am Paper 3: Joshua Bennett, Christ Church, University of Oxford: Henry Hart Milman and the liberal Anglican discovery of medieval church reform

10.30am – 11.00am Paper 4: Stephen Taylor, Durham University: Post-Reformation views of religious reform in England c.900-1150: Thomas Fuller and Jeremy Collier

11.00am – 11.30am Discussion of Papers 3 & 4

11.30am – 12.00 Tea/coffee & biscuits (Grant Room, Michael Sadler Building)

12.00pm – 12.30pm Paper 5: Nicholas Vincent, University of East Anglia: Reform or restoration? Hallam and Stubbs on Church and State

12.30pm – 12.45pm Discussion of Paper 5

12.45pm – 2.00pm Lunch (Grant Room, Michael Sadler Building)

The exhibition in Treasures of the Brotherton will be open during lunch for those wishing to visit

2.00pm – 2.30pm Paper 6: Kathleen Cushing, University of Keele: Law and Reform: Burchard of Worms and His Readers

2.30pm – 2.45pm Discussion of Paper 6

2.45pm – 3.15pm Summing up: Sarah Hamilton, University of Exeter

3.15pm – 4.00pm Roundtable discussion and questions

Workshop ends

Burckhardt at 200

Burckhardt at 200: The Civilization of the Italian Renaissance reconsidered

Burckhardt II

Events • Conference

The bicentenary of the birth of the Swiss scholar, Jacob Burckhardt (25 May 1818 – 8 August 1897), author of The Civilization of the Renaissance in Italy (1860), seems an appropriate moment at which take stock and consider whether or not the idea of an ‘Italian Renaissance’ is still a hermeneutically helpful one. This conference will task an interdisciplinary team of scholars of Renaissance studies as well as of Burckhardt himself to interrogate both the Swiss historian’s own agenda as well as the contemporary validity and helpfulness of the label ‘Italian Renaissance’. Specific reference will be made to the themes treated in his classic account: the state as a work of art; development of the individual; revival of antiquity; discovery of the world and of man; society and festivals; morality and religion.

Professor Simon Ditchfield, University of York
Professor Michelle O’Malley, The Warburg Institute
Dr Stefan Bauer, University of York

Dr Stefan Bauer, University of York
Professor Robert D. Black, University of Leeds
Dr Jill Burke, University of Edinburgh
Professor Virginia Cox, Villa La Pietra, NYU Florence
Professor Wietse de Boer, Miami University
Professor Marco Gentile, University of Parma
Professor Mary Laven, University of Cambridge
Dr Mikkel Mangold, University of Basel
Professor Giuseppe Marcocci, University of Oxford
Professor Sarah Ross, Boston College
Professor Nicholas Terpstra, University of Toronto
Professor Joan-Pau Rubiés, Pompeu Fabra University
Professor Will Stenhouse, Yeshiva University
Dr Claudia Wedepohl, The Warburg Institute
Dr Barbara von Reibnitz, University of Basel

Please click here for a copy of the current conference programme.




Seminar in Durham

“The Art of Disagreeing Badly: Early Modern Religious Polemic about Church History.”

Seminar in Durham on 28 November 2017.

Seminar Series

Religious Diversity

IMEMS seminar series for 2017-18 will focus on religious diversity, with prestigious invited speakers across a wide range of disciplines. This very comprehensive theme will bring together scholars from across the medieval and early modern disciplinary range, whether using historical records, literature, art, architecture or artefacts. Topics considered will include interactions between Jewish, Islamic and Christian groups, the Crusader States and other religious contact zones, the Reformation, Catholic-Protestant relationships, and the development of heresies, monastic movements and sects. Each talk will be followed by a reception, offering a chance to get to know colleagues in the field of medieval and early modern studies.

Register here for Religious Diversity seminars taking place during Michaelmas Term (9th October – 15th December 2017)

The Art of Disagreeing Badly: Early Modern Religious Polemic about Church History

28th November 2017, 16:00, Palace Green Library Learning Centre, Dr Stefan Bauer (University of York)

followed by a drinks reception at the Cafe, Palace Green Library.

This event is part of the IMEMS Religious Diversity seminar series for 2017/18.

Please note that places for this event will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis. To book your place click here

Abstract: The sixteenth and seventeenth centuries were an age of religious polemic. The Reformation presented a new challenge. Protestants aimed to explain, through examples from history, why error had come into the Church after apostolic times and how, after centuries of decadence, the Reformation had become necessary. Catholics argued, on the other hand, that the Church had always remained the same. Protestants also doubted specific key events in church history. They asserted, for example, that St Peter had never been in Rome, so that the tradition, on which the papacy based its own primacy, was invalid. Catholics, by contrast, never doubted Peter’s stay in Rome. This seminar will explore how such polemical arguments conditioned the writing of ecclesiastical history.




The Uses of History in Early Modern Religious Controversies


The Uses of History in
Early Modern Religious Controversies

International Conference
Huntingdon Room at The King’s Manor, York YO1 7EP
Friday, 2 June 2017

Organiser: Stefan Bauer (Dept. of History, University of York)

From the Reformation, church history presented a challenge to each confession in its own right. Protestants were compelled to invent particularly creative answers because, as Euan Cameron has noted, “the core message of the Reformation called for a shift in perceptions of the Christian past.”  This is because Protestants, who aimed to revert to the pristine early state of the Church, were confronted with the key issue of explaining why error had come into the Church after apostolic times. The prevailing models for church history did not suit their view of the degeneration of the medieval Church, so that Protestant historians in the Reformation had to re-invent the discipline. Catholics, on the other hand, aimed to show that church institutions and doctrine from apostolic times had always been the same.

This conference builds on the recent volume “Sacred History: Uses of the Christian Past in the Renaissance World”, edited by Katherine Van Liere, Simon Ditchfield and Howard Louthan (Oxford 2012). It will push research into the field further by concentrating on the polemical interactions between Catholics and Protestants. It will also explore to which degree history and theology were fused together in the process and to which degree they could be separated.

The historiography of Christianity is a fundamental and burgeoning field in current scholarship, a fact which, in combination with the contemporary topicality of and sensitivity to religious difference and identity, suggests that this conference will be of interest to people both within and without the academy.

9.30am                 Opening remarks

9.40am                 Panel 1:  Initial impact
Chair: Richard Rex (Cambridge)

Sam Kennerley (Cambridge)
Erasmus, Oecolampadius and the politics of patristic scholarship in Reformation Basel, 1523-1529.  Download MP3 podcast here

David Bagchi (Hull)
“O Constance, be strong upon my side!” Contesting the Council in the Reformation, c. 1520-c.1550

10.50 am              Tea break

11.10am               Panel 2:  Church histories
Chair: Simon Ditchfield (York)

Stefan Bauer (York)
Pontianus Polman re-imagined.  Download MP3 podcast here

Harald Bollbuck (Göttingen)
Searching for the true religion: the Church History of the “Magdeburg Centuries” between critical methods and confessional polemics

12.30-2pm           Lunch


2pm                       Panel 3:  England, France and the Netherlands
Chair: Stefan Bauer (York)

Jean-Louis Quantin (EPHE, Paris)
The saint, the pope, and the emperor: the deposition of John Chrysostom in confessional polemics

Jan Machielsen (Cardiff)
Pope Joan on the frontlines: the unknown debate between Egbert Grim and Johannes Stalenus in the 1630s

Bethany Hume (York)
The Albigensian heresy in confessional polemic: Jacques-Benigne Bossuet’s “Histoire des variations des églises protestantes” (1688) and the response of Huguenot exiles

3.30pm                 Coffee/tea break

3.50 pm                Panel 4:  Bibles
Chair: Katrin Ettenhuber (Cambridge)

Debora Shuger (UCLA)
The polemics of the paratext and the English Bible

Kevin Killeen (York)
The eye-sore of the Bible: Catholic Radicalism

Nicholas Hardy (Cambridge)
Biblical criticism and confessional controversy: the text of the Old Testament in the Reformed and Catholic traditions

5.20pm                 Short break

5.30pm                 Roundtable: New perspectives on the history of religious polemics

Euan Cameron (Union Theological Seminary, NYC, chair), Anthony Milton (Sheffield), Richard Rex, Simon Ditchfield, Debora Shuger, Katrin Ettenhuber, Stefan Bauer

6.15pm                 Close of the conference with a drinks reception (sponsored by CREMS) followed by a meal for invited speakers.

The Patrides lecture by Euan Cameron, “World History and God’s Grand Design: the historical imagination in the Middle Ages and Reformation”, will take place on 1 June at 6.30pm. All are invited to this public lecture. Location: Bowland Auditorium, Berrick Saul Building, YO10 5DD. A separate registration for this event via Eventbrite is recommended.

Conference registration for guests costs £12 or £10 for students (to cover lunch and coffee breaks), spaces are limited. Guests can register via email:




The Council of Trent: Myth and Historiography

Cambridge “History of Christianity Seminar”

1 March 2017
2.15 pm in the Lightfoot Room, Faculty of Divinity.

Panel Discussion: The Council of Trent: Myth and Historiography
Speakers: Stefan Bauer (York) and Eleonora Belligni (Torino)
Respondent: Simone Maghenzani (Girton College)