UCL English


Dr Charlotte Roberts

Email: charlotte.roberts@ucl.ac.uk
External phone: 020 7679 3145
Internal phone: 33145
Office: Foster Court 230

Charlotte Roberts

Education and Experience 

Charlotte Roberts completed her B.A. in English at Cambridge University in 2006. She began her graduate study as a Henry Fellow at Harvard University before returning to Cambridge as a Benefactors’ Scholar at St John’s College. Her Ph.D, which examined the accommodation of character in the historical and autobiographical writings of Edward Gibbon, was awarded in 2012.

Between 2011 and 2013, Dr Roberts held a Junior Research Fellowship at Clare College, Cambridge, and she joined UCL as a lecturer in 2013.

Research Interests

Charlotte Roberts’ research focuses on eighteenth-century literature and intellectual history. Her first monograph, Edward Gibbon and the Shape of History, explores the relationship between narrative structure, literary detail, and authorial persona in The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire and Gibbon’s Memoirs. She is particularly interested in attitudes towards and perceptions of the past, and her recent research explores historical thinking in a variety of genres: including formal historiography, scientific and travel writing, letters and memoirs.

She is currently working on an examination of the eighteenth-century as an “age of prose”, which examines attitudes towards prose writing found in a wide range of eighteenth-century authors, including Addison, Swift, Richardson, Montagu and Johnson.


Edward Gibbon and the Shape of History (Oxford University Press, 2014).

Articles and Chapters in Books

The Memoirs and the Character of the Historian’, in The Cambridge Companion to Edward Gibbon, ed. by Karen O’Brien and Brian Young (Cambridge University Press, 2018).

‘Living with the Ancient Romans: Past and Present in Eighteenth-Century Encounters with Herculaneum and Pompeii’, Huntington Library Quarterly, 78:1 (2015), 61-85.

‘Tracing a Meridian Through the Map of Time: Fact, Conjecture and the Scientific Method in William Robertson’s History of America’, in Historical Writing in Britain, 1688-1830: Visions of History, ed. by Ben Dew and Fiona Price (Palgrave Macmillan, 2014), pp. 109-126. 

‘Edward Gibbon’, in Atheism and Deism Revalued: Heterodox Religious Identities in Britain, 1650-1800, ed. by Wayne Hudson, Diego Lucci and Jeffrey R. Wigelsworth (Ashgate, 2014).

‘The Marmoreal Edward Gibbon: The Autobiographies and the Ruins of Rome’, Journal for Eighteenth-Century Studies, 34:3 (2011), pp. 357-378.