Professor Elizabeth Tingle

Job: Professor of History

Faculty: Arts, Design and Humanities

School/department: School of Humanities and Performing Arts

Address: De Montfort University, The Gateway, Leicester LE1 9BH

T: 0116 250 6113




Personal profile

I studied for a BA History at University College, London and a DPhil at Oxford University, with a thesis entitled ‘The Building Industries of Eastern Brittany 1600-1790’. A PGCE in secondary History at the Institute of Education, London, was followed by a year’s teaching at Colchester Sixth Form College. I then taught History at University of Northampton (1990-2006) and Plymouth University (2006-2016).

After working on social and economic history projects (building industries, ceramics industries, urban corporations, gender and work I turned to an enduring interest in a combination of the history of ideas (politics and religion) and material culture, and work on the French Wars of Religion. This was published as a political history of Nantes in the later sixteenth century, then came projects on the Counter and Catholic Reformations, published as books on Purgatory funded by the Finzi Trust and Indulgences, funded by the Leverhulme Trust. My latest book is on long-distance pilgrimage in north-western Europe in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, principally to Santiago de Compostela, the Mont Saint-Michel and Lough Derg. Along the way there have been numerous small projects on social history, religious life and culture such as a study of Breton ossuaries, maritime votive objects, parish churches and the Christianisation of prehistoric monuments.

My new research project is on cathedrals and collegiate churches in early modern Europe and their role in urban culture and economy, and the Catholic/Counter-Reformation.

Applications for PhD study in histories of early modern European religion, culture and society are welcome.

Research group affiliations

Institute of History

Research interests/expertise

Early modern European History

French history of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries

French Wars of Religion

Counter and Catholic Reformations in France

Material culture of religious life

Parish churches in Britain and France

Areas of teaching

Historiography and Historical Methodology

Heritage & Public History

Early modern religious history, magic and superstition.

Parish churches.


BA (Hons) History (London)

DPhil History (Oxon)

PGCE Secondary History (London)

Membership of external committees

  • Leicester City Council Heritage Partnership
  • Historical Assn Leicester Branch (committee member)
  • Royal Archaeological Institute (trustee & council member)
  • Leicestershire Historic Churches Trust (trustee)
  • Leics and Rutland Victoria County History Trust (trustee)
  • Leicestershire Archaeological and Historical Society (trustee & committee member)

Membership of professional associations and societies

  • Fellow of Royal Historical Society
  • Member of Royal Archaeological Institute
  • Senior Fellow of Higher Education Academy
  • Arts and Humanities Research Council (peer review college member 2017-2021)


Current projects:

Cathedrals and Collegiate Churches in Early Modern European Cities

Funerary monuments of the counter reformation in France.

The Eco-Histories of the Leicestershire Wolds

Recent research outputs


P. Booth & E. Tingle eds., A Companion to Death, Burial and Remembrance in Late Medieval and Early Modern Europe c.1300-1700 (Leiden: Brill, 2021).

Sacred Journeys: Long Distance Pilgrimage in North-Western Europe in the Counter Reformation (Medieval Institute Press/De Gruyter, 2020)

J. Hillman & E. Tingle eds, Soul Travel. Spiritual Journeys in Late Medieval and Early Modern Europe (Oxford: Peter Lang, 2019).

Guest Editor: The Reformation in the Midlands, Midland History, vol. 44,2 (Sept. 2019).

Indulgences after Luther: pardons in Counter-Reformation France 1500-1700 (London, Pickering & Chatto, 2015).

With Jonathan Willis eds., Dying, Death, Burial and Commemoration in Reformation and Counter-Reformation Britain and Europe, (Farnham. Ashgate, 2015).

Purgatory and Piety in early modern Brittany 1480-1720 (Farnham, Ashgate, 2012).

Authority and Society in Nantes during the French Wars of Religion 1558-1598 (Manchester, Manchester University Press, 2006).


Current research students

[Clare Bowyer, 2nd supervisor, Masquerade and Ambiguity in Festival Costume Design ] 

e.g Names of research students currently supervised, Mode, supervisory role (1 st supervisor / 2 nd supervisor)    (Extract from EIP report ‘Supervisors and their Students’ could be used)

Externally funded research grants information

2023 British Academy/Leverhulme Trust Small Research Grant.

2021-22 Conference Grant from Institution of Historical Research for Global Leicester History Festival (April 2022).

2017 - Short-term fellowship at the Huntington Library, California, USA.

2016 – Conference grants of £200 from Renaissance Studies Society and £360 from Royal Historical Society, joint bids with Jenny Hillman, for conference on Pilgrimage at University of Chester, 24 June 2016.

2013-15. Historic advisor for Ugborough Parish Church, Devon, in a HLF bid which included £5400 for directing university student work on heritage/history of the church.

2013-14. Leverhulme Research Fellowship for ‘Indulgences after Luther. The fall and rise of pardons in Counter-Reformation France.

May 2012 Westhill Foundation £1500 for project on Islam and Christianity in SW England.

June 2011 Scouloudi Foundation Publication £798 to complete for publication Purgatory & Piety in Brittany 1480-1720.

March 2011 Canon Symonds Memorial Scholarship for a week of residential study, St Deiniol’s Library, Hawarden, Flintshire.

January 2010 The Mercers’ Company of London £2000. For a joint History-Chaplaincy series of six lectures on ‘History and Faith’ Spring Term 2010.

June 2006. £2,500 for archival and field research for project ‘Purgatory, Personal Devotions and the Dead in Brittany 1500-1720’, by Gerald Finzi Trust.

ORCID number