Brian Ogilvie



Associate Professor of History


Professor Ogilvie's book The Science of Describing: Natural History in Renaissance Europe, which examines the origins of modern botany and zoology in the 16th and early 17th centuries, was published in Spring 2006. He has received a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship, along with a fellowship at the Columbia University Institute for Scholars at Reid Hall, Paris, for his next research project, on "Ezechiel Spanheim (1629-1710) and the Learned Culture of Seventeenth-Century Europe," which will examine the connections among antiquarianism, diplomacy, and polite society in Baroque and early Enlightenment Europe.
He has published essays on "Encyclopaedism in Early Modern Natural History: From historia to pinax" (1997), "Renaissance and Humanism in the English-language Scholarly Literature, 1988-1998" (1998), "Renaissance and Humanism in the English-language Scholarly Literature, 1998-2000" (2001), "Image and Text in Natural History, 1500-1700" (2003), "The Many Books of Nature: Renaissance Naturalists and Information Overload" (2003), the historiography of Renaissance science (2004), and "Natural History, Ethics, and Physico-Theology" (2005). He is also planning a book-length essay on natural theology and the argument from design. More broadly, he is interested in Renaissance culture, the philosophy of history, the history of witchcraft belief and persecution, and the history of religion. He regularly reviews books for such journals as Renaissance Quarterly, Isis, The Journal of the History of Biology, and American Scientist. He has held fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation, the National Science Foundation, the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, and the Columbia University Institute for Scholars at Reid Hall. He has received grants from the American Philosophical Society, the European Science Foundation, the Folger Shakespeare Library, and the UMass Office of Research. 

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