Robert John Weston Evans 1997-2011

Robert Evans (1997-2011) is also an early-modern historian. His interests span the history of central Europe from the Reformation to the present day. Against stiff competition he may qualify as the most multi-lingual person to hold the Regius chair, and this is reflected in the importance he accords languages in historical development. Language, he has argued, is a much more concrete and vital thing than ethnicity in processes of social change.

His publications range from biography – Rudolf II and his World (1973), to grand survey – The Making of the Hapsburg Monarchy (1979) and Austria, Hungary, and the Hapsburgs (2006). 

Among the small nations and seldom-learnt languages championed by Evans, a special place must go to Wales, for whose history and culture he is an indefatigable ambassador. He is also a great supporter of local history and education in and around Oxford.