Dr Ariel Hessayon

Staff details

Position Reader in early modern History
Department History
Email a.hessayon (@gold.ac.uk)
Phone +44 (0)20 7919 7492
Dr Ariel Hessayon

Dr Ariel Hessayon is primarily an early modern historian, although he occasionally ranges outside that chronological boundary. He has written extensively on a variety of topics including antiscripturism, anti-Trinitarianism, anticlericalism, ball games, book burning, communism, environmentalism, esotericism, extra-canonical texts, heresy, crypto-Jews, Judaizing, millenarianism, monstrous births, mysticism, prophecy and religious radicalism.

His work is based on extensive research and quite often utilises sources unknown to other historians since it draws upon a great many archival discoveries. Consequently, Dr Hessayon tends to offer very detailed accounts coupled with original observations based on engagement with these recovered sources.

Academic qualifications

  • BA History, Trinity College, Oxford University 1990
  • PhD History, Selwyn College, Cambridge University 1996

Teaching and Supervision

  • London's History through Literature
  • Early Modern European philosophy
  • Introduction to the late medieval and early modern European world
  • Heresy, the Occult and the Apocalypse in Early Modern Europe
  • Radicalism during the English Revolution, 1641–60

Research interests

Dr Hessayon's current research consists of several aspects.

Firstly, a monograph on the reception of Jacob Boehme's writings in the English-speaking world during the seventeenth century. This is under contract with Brill and scheduled for publication towards the end of 2022.

Secondly, a major project entitled 'Providence, Mission, Race and Settlement in the Atlantic World, c.1580-c.1690. This is being undertaken with the collaboration of Luís Filipe Silvério Lima.

Thirdly, a book-length study on Enoch and the books of Enoch in the British Isles and beyond, c.1450-c.1850.

Fourthly, a book aimed at general readers on The history of football in the British Isles, c.1250-c.1900.

Finally, a study of Radicalism and the occult during the English Revolution, 1641-1660.

Publications

Book

Hessayon, Ariel. 2007. ‘Gold Tried in the Fire’: The prophet TheaurauJohn Tany and the English Revolution. Aldershot: Ashgate. ISBN 978-0-7546-5597-8

Edited Book

Hessayon, Ariel and Laborie, Lionel, eds. 2020. Early Modern Prophecies in Transnational, National and Regional Contexts, vol. 1: Continental Europe. Leiden: Brill. ISBN 9789004443631

Hessayon, Ariel and Laborie, Lionel, eds. 2020. Early Modern Prophecies in Transnational, National and Regional Contexts, vol. 3: The British Isles. Leiden: Brill. ISBN 9789004443631

Hessayon, Ariel and Laborie, Lionel, eds. 2020. Early Modern Prophecies in Transnational, National and Regional Contexts, vol. 2: The Mediterranean World. Leiden: Brill. ISBN 9789004443631

Hessayon, Ariel, ed. 2018. The Refiner’s Fire: the Collected Works of TheaurauJohn Tany. London: Breviary Stuff Publications. ISBN 9780957000575

Hessayon, Ariel, ed. 2016. Jane Lead and her Transnational Legacy. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN 978-1-137-39613-6

Hessayon, Ariel and Apetrei, Sara, eds. 2013. An Introduction to Jacob Boehme: Four Centuries of Thought and Reception. Abingdon: Routledge. ISBN 9780415843577

Hessayon, Ariel and Finnegan, David, eds. 2011. Varieties of Seventeenth- and early Eighteenth-century English radicalism in context. Aldershot: Ashgate. ISBN 978-0-7546-6905-0

Hessayon, Ariel, ed. 2007. A selection of papers from "Rediscovering Radicalism in the British Isles and Ireland in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth centuries", Goldsmith’s College, University of London, 21-23 June, 2006. Florence: Florence University Press.

Hessayon, Ariel and Keene, Nicholas, eds. 2006. Scripture and Scholarship in Early Modern England. Aldershot: Ashgate. ISBN 978-0-7546-3893-3

Edited Journal

Hessayon, Ariel; Corns, Thomas and Hughes, Ann, eds. 2014. Gerrard Winstanley: Theology, Rhetoric, Politics, Prose Studies, 36(1). 0144-0357

Book Section

Hessayon, Ariel. 2021. ‘Beastly Furie, and Exstreme Violence’: Pain, Injury and Death Resulting from Football and Other Ball Games Played in the British Isles Before the Reformation. In: Stephen Wagg and Allyson M. Pollock, eds. The Palgrave Handbook of Sport, Politics and Harm. Cham, Switzerland: Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 17-70. ISBN 9783030728250

Hessayon, Ariel. 2020. Rethinking early Quakerism and its origins. In: John Coffey, ed. The Oxford History of Protestant Dissenting Traditions. Volume I, The Post-Reformation Era, 1559-1689. Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 139-160. ISBN 9780198702238

Hessayon, Ariel. 2018. Jacob Böhme’s Foremost Seventeenth-Century English Translator: John Sparrow (1615–1670) of Essex. In: Bo Andersson; Lucinda Martin; Leigh Penman and Andrew Weeks, eds. Jacob Böhme and His World. Leiden: Brill, pp. 329-357. ISBN 9789004385092

Hessayon, Ariel. 2018. 'Not the Word of God': Varieties of Antiscripturism during the English Revolution. In: Robert Armstrong and Tadhg Ó Hannracháin, eds. The English Bible in the Early Modern World. Leiden: Brill, pp. 161-182. ISBN 9789004347977

Hessayon, Ariel. 2017. The Resurrection of John Lilburne, Quaker. In: John Rees, ed. John Lilburne and the Levellers: Reappraising the Roots of English Radicalism 400 Years On. Abingdon: Routledge, pp. 95-116. ISBN 9781138060692

Hessayon, Ariel. 2016. Lead’s Life and Times: (part one) Before Widowhood; (part two) The Woman in the Wilderness; (part three) The Philadelphian Society. In: Ariel Hessayon, ed. Jane Lead and her Transnational Legacy. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 13-90. ISBN 9781137396136

Hessayon, Ariel. 2016. Jane Lead’s Legacy in Perspective. In: Ariel Hessayon, ed. Jane Lead and her Transnational Legacy. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 1-12. ISBN 978-1-137-39613-6

Hessayon, Ariel. 2015. The Apocrypha in early modern England. In: Kevin Killeen; Helen Smith and Rachel Willie, eds. The Oxford Handbook of the Bible in Early Modern England, c. 1530–1700. Oxford: Oxford UP, pp. 131-148. ISBN 9780199686971

Hessayon, Ariel. 2014. The Ranters and their sources: the question of Jacob Boehme’s supposed influence. In: Vittoria Feola, ed. Antiquarianism and Science in Early Modern Urban Networks. Paris: Blanchard, pp. 77-101.

Hessayon, Ariel. 2013. ‘Boehme’s life and times’. In: , ed. Ariel Hessayon and Sarah Apetrei (eds.), An Introduction to Jacob Boehme: Four Centuries of Thought and Reception. New York: Routledge, pp. 13-37. ISBN 978-0-415-84357-7

Hessayon, Ariel. 2013. Jacob Boehme’s writings during the English Revolution and afterwards: their publication, dissemination and influence. In: , ed. Ariel Hessayon and Sarah Apetrei (eds.), An Introduction to Jacob Boehme: Four Centuries of Thought and Reception. New York: Routledge, pp. 77-97. ISBN 978-0-415-84357-7

Hessayon, Ariel. 2012. Abiezer Coppe and the Ranters. In: Laura Lunger Knoppers, ed. The Oxford Handbook of Literature and the English Revolution. Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 346-374. ISBN 9780199560608

Hessayon, Ariel. 2011. Gerrard Winstanley, radical reformer. In: Ariel Hessayon and David Finnegan, eds. Varieties of seventeenth- and early eighteenth-century English radicalism in context. Aldershot: Ashgate, pp. 87-112. ISBN 978-0-7546-6905-0

Hessayon, Ariel and Finnegan, David. 2011. Introduction: Reappraising early modern radicals and radicalism. In: Ariel Hessayon and David Finnegan, eds. Varieties of seventeenth- and early eighteenth-century English radicalism in context. Aldershot: Ashgate, 000-000. ISBN 978-0-7546-6905-0

Hessayon, Ariel. 2011. “The Great Trappaner of England”: Thomas Violet, Jews and crypto-Jews during the English Revolution and at the Restoration. In: Michael Braddick and David Smith, eds. The Experience of Revolution in Stuart Britain and Ireland. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, pp. 210-230. ISBN 780521868969

Hessayon, Ariel. 2007. Jacob Boehme, Emanuel Swedenborg and their Readers. In: Stephen McNeilly, ed. The Arms of Morpheus: Essays on Swedenborg and Mysticism. London: The Swedenborg Society, pp. 17-56. ISBN 9780854481507

Hessayon, Ariel. 2006. Og King of Bashan, Enoch and the Books of Enoch: Extra-Canonical Texts and Interpretations of Genesis 6:1-4. In: Ariel Hessayon and N. Keene, eds. Scripture and Scholarship in Early Modern England. Aldershot: Ashgate, pp. 5-40. ISBN 9780754638933

Hessayon, Ariel. 2006. Fabricating radical traditions. In: Mario Caricchio and Giovanni Tarantino, eds. Cromohs Virtual Seminars. Recent historiographical trends of the British Studies (17th–18th Centuries). Florence University Press, 000-000.

Hessayon, Ariel. 2004. 19 entries in Oxford Dictionary of National Biography: ‘Adams, Mary (supp. fl. 1652)’, ‘Attaway, Mrs (fl. 1645-1646)’, ‘Blunden, Humphrey (b. 1609, d. in or after 1654)’, ‘Brice, Edmund (fl. 1648-1696)’, ‘Bromley, Thomas (bap. 1630, d. 1691)’, ‘Bull, John (d. 1642)’, ‘Burton, Simon (bap. 1613, d. 1663)’, ‘Calvert, Giles (bap. 1612, d. 1663)’, ‘Coppe, Abiezer (1619-1672?)’, ‘Crab, Roger (c.1616-1680)’, ‘Currer, William (c.1617-1668)’, ‘Everard, William (bap. 1602?, d. in or after 1651)’, ‘Franklin, William (b. c.1610)’, ‘Jhones, Basset (b. 1613/14)’, ‘Norwood, Robert (c.1610-1654)’, ‘Pordage, John (bap. 1607, d. 1681)’, ‘Robins, John (fl. 1641-1652)’, ‘Totney, Thomas (bap. 1608, d. 1659?)’, ‘Wyke, Andrew (fl. 1645-1663)’,. In: H.C.G. Matthew and Brian Harrison, eds. Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Oxford and online: Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0198614111

Article

Hessayon, Ariel and Lucci, Diego. 2022. The Supposed Burning of the Racovian Catechism in 1614: A Historiographical Myth Exposed. History: The Journal of the Historical Association, 107(374), pp. 25-50. ISSN 0018-2648

Hessayon, Ariel. 2020. ‘Teutonicus': Knowledge of Boehme among English Speakers before the English Civil War’. Daphnis, 48, pp. 247-269. ISSN 0300-693X

Hessayon, Ariel. 2019. Gerrard Winstanley in translation. Notes and Queries, 66(4), pp. 544-546. ISSN 0029-3970

Hessayon, Ariel. 2017. The Jews, Instructions for Use: Four Eighteenth-Century Projects for the Emancipation of European Jews. By Bernardini, Paolo L. and Lucci, Diego. Academic Studies Press. 2012 [Book Review]. History: The Journal of the Historical Association, 102(351), pp. 514-516. ISSN 0018-2648

Hessayon, Ariel. 2015. Gerrard Winstanley: The Digger’s Life and Legacy. By John Gurney. London: Pluto Press, 2013 [Book Review]. The Historian, 77(3), pp. 607-608. ISSN 0018-2370

Hessayon, Ariel. 2014. Paul C. Lim. Mystery Unveiled: The Crisis of the Trinity in Early Modern England. New York: Oxford University Press, 2012 [Book Review]. Journal of British Studies, 53(4), pp. 1048-1049. ISSN 0021-9371

Hessayon, Ariel. 2014. Winstanley and Baptist thought. Prose Studies, 36(1), pp. 15-31. ISSN 0144-0357

Hessayon, Ariel. 2014. "The Faustian Century. German Literature and Culture in the Age of Luther and Faustus". Laan, J.M. van der and Weeks, Andrew, eds. Rochester, NY: Camden House, 2013 [Book Review]. Cromohs - Cyber Review of Modern Historiography, 18, pp. 145-148. ISSN 1123-7023

Hessayon, Ariel. 2014. Paul Kléber Monod, Solomon’s Secret Arts: The Occult in the Age of Enlightenment, New Haven and London: Yale University Press 2013 [Book Review]. Aries: Journal for the Study of Western Esotericism, 14(2), pp. 260-263. ISSN 1567-9896

Hessayon, Ariel. 2013. Revelation Restored: The Apocalypse in later Seventeenth-Century England, by Warren Johnston [Book Review]. The English Historical Review, 128(530), pp. 155-157. ISSN 0013-8266

Hessayon, Ariel. 2013. ‘Gerrard Winstanley and Jacob Boehme’. Cromohs – Cyber Review of Modern Historiography, 18, pp. 1-28. ISSN 1123-7023

Hessayon, Ariel. 2011. Women, Feminism and Religion in Early Enlightenment England, Sarah Apetrei. Cambridge University Press, 2010 [Book Review]. Women's Studies International Forum, 34(6), pp. 613-614. ISSN 0277-5395

Hessayon, Ariel. 2011. John Selden. A life in scholarship. By G. J. Toomer. (Warburg Studies.) Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009 [Book Review]. The Journal of Ecclesiastical History, 62(3), pp. 624-625. ISSN 0022-0469

Hessayon, Ariel. 2011. Jews and crypto-Jews in sixteenth and seventeenth century England. Cromohs: Cyber Review of Modern Historiography, 16, pp. 1-26.

Hessayon, Ariel. 2011. The Complete Works of Gerrard Winstanley edited by: Thomas N. Corns, Ann Hughes, David Loewenstein (2 volumes), Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2009 [Book Review]. Reviews in History(1043), ISSN 1749-8155

Hessayon, Ariel. 2011. The making of Abiezer Coppe. The Journal of Ecclesiastical History, 62(1), pp. 38-58. ISSN 0022-0469

Hessayon, Ariel. 2011. Biblical Scholarship, Science and Politics in Early Modern England: Thomas Browne and the Thorny Place of Knowledge by Kevin Killeen [Book Review]. Sixteenth Century Journal, 42(4), pp. 1106-1108. ISSN 0361-0160

Hessayon, Ariel. 2011. Stephen Wright, The Early English Baptists, 1603–1649, Woodbridge, Suffolk: The Boydell Press, 2006 [Book Review]. Cromohs - Cyber Review of Modern Historiography, 16, ISSN 1123-7023

Hessayon, Ariel. 2010. Apocalypse Then: Prophecy and the Making of the Modern World, by Arthur H. Williamson (Westport, CT: Praeger, 2008) [Book Review]. The English Historical Review, 125(516), pp. 1250-1252. ISSN 0013-8266

Hessayon, Ariel. 2010. Marvin Perry and Frederick M. Schweitzer, eds, Antisemitic Myths: A Historical and Contemporary Anthology, Indiana University Press: Bloomington IN, 2008 [Book Review]. European History Quarterly, 40(3), pp. 548-550. ISSN 0265-6914

Hessayon, Ariel. 2010. A Radical History of Britain. Visionaries, Rebels and Revolutionaries: the Men and Women who Fought for Our Freedoms. London: Little, Brown and Company, 2009 [Book Review]. Reviews in History(888), ISSN 1749-8155

Hessayon, Ariel. 2009. Peter Lake and Steven Pincus (eds.), The politics of the public sphere in early modern England. Manchester University Press, 2007 [Book Review]. Archives: The Journal of the British Records Association, 34(121), pp. 72-73. ISSN 0003-9535

Hessayon, Ariel. 2009. François Soyer, The Persecution of the Jews and Muslims of Portugal. King Manuel I and the End of Religious Tolerance (1496–7) [The Medieval Mediterranean. Peoples, Economies and Cultures, 400–1500. Volume 69] (Leiden, Brill, 2007) [Book Review]. Reviews in History(797), ISSN 1749-8155

Hessayon, Ariel. 2009. Eliane Glaser, Judaism without Jews: Philosemitism and Christian Polemic in Early Modern England. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2007 [Book Review]. Reviews in History(798), ISSN 1749-8155

Hessayon, Ariel. 2009. The Face of the City: Civic Portraiture and Civic Identity in Early Modern England By Robert Tittler [Book Review]. History: The Journal of the Historical Association, 94(314), pp. 236-237. ISSN 0018-2648

Hessayon, Ariel. 2009. William Blake and the Cultures of Radical Christianity, by Robert Rix (Aldershot: Ashgate, 2007) [Book Review]. The English Historical Review, 124(506), pp. 195-196. ISSN 0013-8266

Hessayon, Ariel. 2009. Early modern communism: The Diggers and community of goods. Journal for the Study of Radicalism, 3(2), pp. 1-49. ISSN 19301189

Hessayon, Ariel. 2009. Restoring the Garden of Eden in England’s Green and Pleasant Land: The Diggers and the Fruits of the Earth. Journal for the Study of Radicalism, 2(2), pp. 1-25.

Hessayon, Ariel. 2009. English Radicalism, 1550-1850 by Glenn Burgess, Matthew Festenstein [Book Review]. Sixteenth Century Journal, 40(3), pp. 873-874. ISSN 0361-0160

Hessayon, Ariel. 2008. Brave community. The Digger movement in the English Revolution. By John Gurney. (Politics, Culture and Society in Early Modern Britain.) Manchester–New York: Manchester University Press, 2007 [Book Review]. The Journal of Ecclesiastical History, 59(4), pp. 778-779. ISSN 0022-0469

Hessayon, Ariel. 2008. Christopher Duston, Judith Maltby, eds. Religion in Revolutionary England. Manchester: Manchester University Press [Book Review]. H-Albion, H-Net Reviews,

Hessayon, Ariel. 2008. Miracles in Enlightenment England. By Jane Shaw. New Haven–London: Yale University Press, 2006 [Book Review]. The Journal of Ecclesiastical History, 59(2), pp. 355-357. ISSN 0022-0469

Hessayon, Ariel. 2008. Heterodoxy in Early Modern Science and Religion - Edited by John Brooke and Ian Maclean [Book Review]. History: The Journal of the Historical Association, 93(309), pp. 124-126. ISSN 0018-2648

Hessayon, Ariel. 2008. Windows of the Soul: The Art of Physiognomy in European Culture 1470-1780 by Martin Porter [Book Review]. Sixteenth Century Journal, 39(2), pp. 571-572. ISSN 0361-0160

Hessayon, Ariel. 2007. Kate Peters, Print Culture and the Early Quakers. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2005 [Book Review]. Reviews in History(626), ISSN 1749-8155

Hessayon, Ariel. 2007. Blown by the Spirit: Puritanism and the Emergence of an Antinomian Underground in Pre-Civil-War England By David R. Como [Book Review]. History: The Journal of the Historical Association, 92(305), pp. 118-119. ISSN 0018-2648

Hessayon, Ariel. 2007. "The refiner’s fire": TheaurauJohn Tany (1608–1659) e la Rivoluzione Inglese. Rivista Storica Italiana, 119, pp. 359-384.

Hessayon, Ariel. 2007. "The Teutonicks writings": translating Jacob Boehme into English and Welsh. Esoterica, 9, pp. 129-165.

Hessayon, Ariel. 2007. Incendiary texts: book burning in England, c.1640–c.1660. Cromohs – Cyber Review of Modern Historiography, 12, pp. 1-25.

Hessayon, Ariel. 2006. Making Heretics: Militant Protestantism and Free Grace in Massachusetts, 1636–1641. By Michael P. Winship. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 2002 [Book Review]. Church History: Studies in Christianity and Culture, 75(1), pp. 206-208. ISSN 0009-6407

Hessayon, Ariel. 2006. A Textual History of the King James Bible by David Norton; The New Cambridge Paragraph Bible with the Apocrypha: King James Version by David Norton [Book Review]. Sixteenth Century Journal, 37(4), pp. 1109-1111. ISSN 0361-0160

Hessayon, Ariel. 2005. Ann Hughes, Gangraena and the Struggle for the English Revolution. Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2004 [Book Review]. Reviews in History(479), ISSN 1749-8155

Hessayon, Ariel. 2005. Og, re di Basan, Enoc e i Libri di Enoc: testi non canonici e intrepretazioni di Genesi 6, 1–4. Rivista di Storia e Letteratura Religiosa, 41, pp. 249-295.

Hessayon, Ariel. 2005. Jacob Boehme and the early Quakers. Journal of the Friends Historical Society, 60(3), pp. 191-223.

Further profile content

Research projects

'Providence, Mission, Race and Settlement in the Atlantic World, c.1580-c.1690
In collaboration with Luís Filipe Silvério Lima

Media engagements

2018: ‘What might Hell look or sound like?’
Broadcast on BBC Ideas

2017: 'Why Football is the World’s Game’
Broadcast on BBC World Service

2012: ‘Roundhead or Cavalier: Which one are you?’
Broadcast on BBC Four

Grants and awards

2022: Visiting fellowship at Escola de Filosofia, Letras e Ciências Humanas/ EFLCH / UNIFESP, Guarulhos, Brazil
Awarded by Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do estado de São Paulo (FAPESP)

2014: ‘“All in All”: the prophetic thought and legacies of Jacob Boehme and Jane Lead’
Grant of £225,000 from the Panacea Society as principal investigator on a four year research project

2008: University of London Research Fellowship at School of Advanced Study
Grant for teaching replacement to enable research on ‘Jews and secret Jews in sixteenth and seventeenth century England’

Fellowships

Fellow of the Royal Historical Society (since 2009)
University of London Research Fellowship at School of Advanced Study (2008)
Leverhulme Special Research Fellowship at Royal Holloway, University of London (1998–2000)
New Hall, Cambridge University, Research Fellowship (1995–1998)

Articles related to Dr Ariel Hessayon