John H. Elliott

John Huxtable Elliott

(1930-06-23)23 June 1930
Died10 March 2022(2022-03-10) (aged 91)
Other namesJ. H. Elliott
Oonah Sophia Butler
(m. 1958)
Academic background
Alma materTrinity College, Cambridge
ThesisCastile and Catalonia During the Ministry of the Conde Duque de Olivares (1956)
Doctoral advisorSir Herbert Butterfield
Academic work
Doctoral studentsGeoffrey Parker

Sir John Huxtable Elliott FBA (23 June 1930 – 10 March 2022) was a British historian and Hispanist who was Regius Professor Emeritus at the University of Oxford and honorary fellow of Oriel College, Oxford, and Trinity College, Cambridge.[1][2] He published under the name J. H. Elliott.


Born in Reading, Berkshire, on 23 June 1930, Elliott was educated at Eton College and Trinity College, Cambridge. He was an assistant lecturer at Cambridge University from 1957 to 1962 and Lecturer in History from 1962 until 1967, and was subsequently Professor of History at King's College, London, between 1968 and 1973. In 1972 he was elected to the Fellowship of the British Academy. He was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1977 and the American Philosophical Society in 1982.[3][4] Elliott was Professor in the School of Historical Studies at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, New Jersey, from 1973 to 1990, and was Regius Professor of Modern History, Oxford, between 1990 and 1997.[5][6][7]

He held honorary doctorates from the Autonomous University of Madrid (1983), the universities of Genoa (1992), Portsmouth (1993), Barcelona (1994), Warwick (1995), Brown University (1996), Valencia (1998), Lleida (1999), Complutense University of Madrid (2003), College of William & Mary (2005), London (2007), Charles III University of Madrid (2008), Seville (2011), Alcalá (2012), and Cambridge (2013).[6] Elliott was a Fellow of the Rothermere American Institute, University of Oxford, of whose Founding Council he was also a member.[8]

Elliott was knighted in the 1994 New Year Honours for services to history[9] and was decorated with Commander of Isabella the Catholic in 1987, the Grand Cross of Alfonso the Wise in 1988, the Grand Cross of Isabella the Catholic in 1996, and the Creu de Sant Jordi in 1999. An eminent Hispanist, he was given the Prince of Asturias Prize in 1996 for his contributions to the social sciences. For his outstanding contributions to the history of Spain and the Spanish Empire in the early modern period, Elliott was awarded the Balzan Prize for History, 1500–1800, in 1999.[6] He was a corresponding member of the Real Academia de la Historia since 1965.[10]

His studies of the Iberian Peninsula and the Spanish Empire helped the understanding of the problems confronting 16th- and 17th-century Spain, and the attempts of its leaders to avert its decline.[11] He is considered, together with Raymond Carr and Angus Mackay, a major figure in developing Spanish historiography.[12]

Elliott's principal publications are The Revolt of the Catalans (1963); The Old World and the New, 1492–1650 (1970); and The Count-Duke of Olivares (1986).[7] His Richelieu and Olivares (1987) won the Leo Gershoy Award of the American Historical Association[13] and, in 1992, the Prize XVIIe. In 2006, his book Empires of the Atlantic World: Britain and Spain in America 1492–1830 was published by Yale University Press, winning the Francis Parkman Prize the following year. In 2012, he published his reflections on the progress of historical scholarship in History in the Making.[7]

Elliott was hospitalised due to pneumonia and kidney complications, at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford, on 5 March 2022. He died on 10 March, at the age of 91.[14][15]



  1. ^ "Honorary Fellows of Trinity College, Cambridge". Retrieved 26 January 2007.
  2. ^ Slack, Paul (30 June 2022). "Sir John Elliott". Past & Present. 257 (1): 3–10. doi:10.1093/pastj/gtac023. ISSN 0031-2746.
  3. ^ "John Huxtable Elliott". American Academy of Arts & Sciences. Retrieved 6 June 2022.
  4. ^ "APS Member History". Retrieved 6 June 2022.
  5. ^ "No. 52199". The London Gazette. 2 July 1990. p. 11319.
  6. ^ a b c "Debrett's People of Today entry for Prof Sir John Elliott, FBA". Archived from the original on 11 November 2014. Retrieved 26 October 2014.
  7. ^ a b c "British Academy Fellows Archive. Record for: ELLIOTT, Sir John". Archived from the original on 26 October 2014. Retrieved 26 January 2007.
  8. ^ "The Rothermere American Institute Founding Council". Rothermere American Institute. Archived from the original on 17 November 2012. Retrieved 22 November 2012.
  9. ^ "No. 53527". The London Gazette. 30 December 1993. p. 1.
  10. ^ "El historiador británico John H. Elliott, premio Órdenes Españolas". ABC. 24 April 2018.
  11. ^ "Balzan Prize Returns to Oxford". Oxford University Gazette 1999. Archived from the original on 23 February 2007. Retrieved 26 January 2007.
  12. ^ Delanty, Gerard Handbook of Contemporary European Social Theory. Routledge, 2006 ISBN 0-415-35518-4 ISBN 978-0-415-35518-6 at Google Books
  13. ^ "Leo Gershoy Award Recipients". Retrieved 26 January 2007.
  14. ^ Miguel, Rafa de (10 March 2022). "Muere John H. Elliott, el historiador británico maestro de hispanistas, a los 91 años". El País (in Spanish). Retrieved 10 March 2022.
  15. ^ "Sir John Elliott, Oxford Regius Professor of Modern History who as a historian of imperial Spain boldly opened up new areas of research". The Telegraph. 10 March 2022. Retrieved 12 March 2022.
Academic offices Preceded bySir Michael Howard Regius Professor of Modern Historyat the University of Oxford 1990–1997 Succeeded byR. J. W. Evans Awards Preceded byMarianne Elliott Leo Gershoy Award 1985 Succeeded byJ. M. Beattie Preceded byRichard Davenport-Hines Wolfson History Prize 1986 With: Jonathan Israel Succeeded byRees Davies Preceded byJohn Grigg Succeeded byJohn Pemble Preceded byMiquel Batllori [an; ca; de; es] Princess of Asturias Awardfor Social Sciences 1996 Succeeded byMartí de Riquer i Morera Preceded byJoaquim Veríssimo Serrão Preceded byHarmon Craig Balzan Prize 1999 With: Luigi Luca Cavalli-Sforza,Mikhael Gromov, and Paul Ricœur Succeeded byAbdul Sattar Edhi Preceded bySir Robert May Succeeded byIlkka Hanski Succeeded byMichel Mayor Preceded byAndrzej Walicki Succeeded byMichael Stolleis Succeeded byMartin Litchfield West Preceded byMegan Marshall Francis Parkman Prize 2007 Succeeded byJean Edward Smith