Christopher Hibbert
Born5 March 1924
Enderby, England
Died21 December 2008 (aged 84)
Other namesArthur Raymond Hibbert
Academic background
Alma materOriel College, Oxford
Academic work
Main interestsBritish history
Notable worksVarious major biographies

Arthur Raymond "Christopher" Hibbert, MC, FRSL, FRGS (5 March 1924 – 21 December 2008) was an English author, popular historian and biographer. He has been called "a pearl of biographers" (New Statesman) and "probably the most widely-read popular historian of our time and undoubtedly one of the most prolific" (The Times).[1]


Arthur Raymond Hibbert was born in Enderby, Leicestershire in 1924, the son of Canon H. V. Hibbert (died 1980) and his wife Maude. He was the second of three children, and christened Arthur Raymond.[2] He was educated at Radley College in Oxfordshire before he went up to Oriel College at the University of Oxford.[1][3] He was awarded the degrees of BA and later MA.[citation needed]

He left Oriel College to join the Army, where a sergeant major referred to Hibbert as "Christopher Robin" (of Winnie the Pooh books) based upon his youthful looks. The name "Christopher" subsequently stuck. During World War II, Hibbert served as an infantry officer in the London Irish Rifles regiment in Italy, reaching the rank of captain. He was wounded twice and awarded the Military Cross in 1945.[3][4]

From 1945 to 1959, he was a partner in a firm of land agents and auctioneers,[1] and began his writing career in 1957.[4] Hibbert was awarded the Heinemann Award for Literature in 1962 for The Destruction of Lord Raglan.[3] He was a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature.

Personal life

Hibbert lived at Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire, and was a member of the Army and Navy Club and the Garrick Club. He was married to Susan Piggford and the couple had three children: his literary executor Kate Hibbert, television writer Jimmy Hibbert and music journalist Tom Hibbert.[3]

He died on 21 December 2008, in Henley, from bronchial pneumonia at the age of 84.[1][3][4] He was cremated, after a humanist ceremony in Oxford, on 2 January 2009.[5]



  1. ^ a b c d "Christopher Hibbert: popular historian". The Times. 29 December 2008. Retrieved 28 April 2020.
  2. ^ Sheppard, Francis (27 January 2009). "Obituary: Christopher Hibbert". The Guardian. Retrieved 29 April 2021.
  3. ^ a b c d e Sheppard, Francis (27 January 2009). "Obituary: Christopher Hibbert". The Guardian. Retrieved 28 August 2011.
  4. ^ a b c Grimes, William (6 January 2009). "Christopher Hibbert, 84, Lively Historian, Dies". The New York Times. Retrieved 28 August 2011.
  5. ^ "Hibbert, Arthur Raymond [Christopher] (1924–2008), historian". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. May 2012. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/100916. ISBN 978-0-19-861411-1. Retrieved 23 September 2012. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.) Subscription needed.

Further reading