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Dyan Elliott

Peter B. Ritzma Professor of the Humanities and Professor of History

Ph.D., University of Toronto, 1989
Curriculum Vitae


Geographic Field(s):  Medieval and Early Modern European History

Thematic Field(s):  Gender and Sexuality History; Religious History

Principal Research Interest(s):  Medieval Sexuality, Gender, and Spirituality


Dyan Elliott (Ph.D., University of Toronto, 1989) is a medieval historian who has published widely on medieval gender and religious history. At present, she is working on a book length analysis of the medieval clergy and sexual scandal. She has also recently completed a historical novel entitled A Hole in the Heavens (forthcoming with Bagwyn press – a subsidiary of Arizona State University’s Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies). 


Teaching Interests

I accept students who are engaged with many aspects of the cultural history of the high and later Middle Ages. My most recent graduates are Anne Koenig (PhD, 2013; presently Assistant Professor of History at the University of South Florida) and Melissa Vise (PhD, 2015; presently Visiting Assistant Professor in Italian Studies at New York University). Anne’s dissertation was entitled “Out of Their Minds: Madness, Medicine and Society in late Medieval Germany”;  Melissa’s dissertation was entitled "The Threat of the Tongue: Illicit Speech in Late Medieval Italy (1250-1450)."

Undergraduate Courses

  • The Early Middle Ages.
  • The High Middle Ages.
  • The Medieval Misfit.
  • Medieval Sexuality.
  • Medieval Women.
  • Saints and Sinners in the Middle Ages.

Recent Awards and Honors

  • National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Research Fellowship, 2021.
  • John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellow, 2020.
  • ACLS Fellowship, September 2016- September 2017 .
  • National Humanities Center Fellowship, 2012-13.
  • Elected fellow of the Medieval Academy of America, March 2010.