Kingship: The Politics of Enchantment

Oct 6, 2016
Classics 110
1010 E 59th St.
Chicago, IL 60637
Back to Events

Francis OakleyWilliams College


Cosponsored by the History Department and the Medieval Studies Workshop

The lecture will focus on the extraordinary millennial career of the sacral kingship down through the ages and across the globe as the most common form of government known to humankind. It will trace its survival down into the early modern era and highlight the unexpected turn whereby it drew the papacy itself into its ideological orbit and helped transform the popes into the last of the great sacral monarchs.

You can read more about Prof. Oakley's book on Kingship HERE.


Francis Oakley is Edward Dorr Griffin Professor of the History of Ideas Emeritus and President Emeritus at Williams College, where he has taught since 1961. He is also President Emeritus of the American Council of Learned Societies and in 1999 he was Isaiah Berlin Visiting Professor of the History of Ideas at Oxford University. Prof. Oakley is the author of thirteen books, coeditor of three others, and contributor to the journals of around two hundred articles, translations and book reviews on topics in medieval history and on American higher education. In 2004 his Conciliarist Tradition (Oxford University Press, 2003) was awarded the Roland Bainton Book Prize. His most recent book is The Watershed of Modern Politics: Law, Virtue, Kingship, and Consent (1300-1650), the final volume of a trilogy on the emergence of western political thought in the Latin middle ages.