Prof James Palmer

Prof James Palmer

Director of Research


Researcher profile

+44 (0)1334 46 2197
Mediaeval History, 71 South Street
Office hours
By appointment. On Research Leave (Semester 2).



I was born in Nottingham and studied in Sheffield (BA and PhD) and Cambridge (MPhil). I held posts at the universities of Leicester and Nottingham, before moving to St Andrews in 2007. I was a cross-faculty pro dean for research postgraduates 2014-18 and I have been a full professor since 2018.

Research areas

My research focuses on culture and religion c. 400-900. I am particularly interested in the movement of ideas and people across different cultural worlds – across Eurasia and Africa – and the consequences of the exchanges involved.

My research has focused on two principal areas: saints and hagiography (Anglo-Saxons in a Frankish World [2009] and Early Medieval Hagiography [2018]) and apocalyptic beliefs (The Apocalypse in the Early Middle Ages [2014] and the volume Apocalypse and Reform from Late Antiquity to the Middle Ages [2018, co-edited with Matt Gabriele]).

I am presently working on a project on early medieval science, medicine and belief. I am also writing a textbook on the Merovingian Frankish world.

PhD supervision

  • Dana Weaver
  • Jessica Collett
  • Matthew Edholm

Selected publications


See more publications