Dr Arthur der Weduwen

Dr Arthur der Weduwen

USTC Project Manager & Lecturer

Researcher profile

+44 (0)1334 46 2862


Research areas

I am a Lecturer in Modern History and Co-Director and Project Manager of the Universal Short Title Catalogue project. My specialism lies in the history of the Netherlands, but I have enjoyed broadening my research in recent years to encompass Europe generally, as well as more specifically the history of Anglo-Dutch relations, Scandinavia, the Baltic and Eastern Europe.

The first subject of my research career was the history of newspapers, which resulted in the publication of the first complete bibliography of seventeenth-century Dutch and Flemish newspapers (Brill, 2017), as well as two co-authored studies on the invention and development of newspaper advertising (both Brill, 2020). I have also worked extensively on the history of early modern printing, the book trade and book collecting, producing two co-authored public-facing monographs on the book trade of the Dutch Golden Age (Yale UP, 2019) and a global history of libraries (Profile, 2021).

My most recent major publication, State Communication and Public Politics in the Dutch Golden Age, is partially based on the PhD thesis that I defended at St Andrews in 2018, a study of state communication in the Dutch Republic (OUP, 2023). This work describes the political communication practices of the authorities in the early modern Netherlands: the manner in which government sought to inform its citizens, publicise its laws, and engage publicly in quarrels with political opponents.

In 2023 I secured funding through an ERC Starting Grant/UKRI Frontier Research Grant that allowed me to expand my research on state communication by embarking on a comparative European study of the communication of law. The COMLAWEU project runs from 2024 to 2028, and involves three postdoctoral scholars and a PhD student. Each member of the team works on a case study (Italy, France, Scandinavia and the Baltic, Poland-Lithuania), which will allow us, as a research team, to come to a comprehensive understanding of the strategies that European authorities used to communicate with their inhabitants.

In my previous research, I have also undertaken work as part of my British Academy Postdoctoral Fellowship (2020-2023) on the writing and publishing of history in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, focussing as a case study on the canonisation of events in the Dutch Disaster Year (1672) and the Franco-Dutch War (1672-1678).

I have published four co-edited volumes on the history of book catalogues, the Reformation and the book, the early modern book trade and the first prominent Dutch historical schoolbook.

I have been a visiting fellow at Trinity College Dublin, the University of Leiden, the Herzog August Bibliothek Wolfenbüttel and the University of Padua.

I am an editor-in-chief of Brill's The Library of the Written WordHandpress monograph series, and a member of the editorial board of the Dutch Yearbook for Book History.

At St Andrews I teach at undergraduate and postgraduate levels on the history of the book, printing and public opinion, and the Dutch Republic. I welcome enquiries for postgraduate research supervision.

PhD supervision

  • James McCall
  • Giovanni Petrocelli
  • Chloe Akers
  • Saba Alkuwari
  • Alexa Zildjian
  • Basil Bowdler
  • Adyan Sharda
  • Barnaby Cullen
  • Maria Zukovs
  • Zachary Brookman
  • Mhairi Winfield

Selected publications


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