Dr Matthew Symonds

Senior Research Fellow

Centre for Editing Lives and Letters

Faculty of Arts & Humanities

Joined UCL
1st Sep 2012

Research summary

Office Hour: Fridays, 2pm–4pm, B.08 18 Gordon Square

Matthew Symonds is an historian specialising in the history of the book in early modern Europe and the use of the digital humanities within traditional scholarly research. 

He is Co-PI on CELL’s major research project, The Archaeology of Reading in Early Modern Europe, in collaboration with Johns Hopkins and Princeton universities. He supervises a team of researchers transcribing and analysing the manuscript annotations in a collection of books once owned by Elizabethan man of parts Gabriel Harvey and the polymath John Dee. 

He studied history at UCL and Cambridge. His Ph.D., ‘Grub street culture: the newspapers of Nathaniel Mist c.1715 – c. 1745’, is about a Jacobite, his newspaper, and the repeated scandalous and seditious libels that it published. 

He is currently writing about translation and cultural identity in exile communities, specifically the Huguenot community in early modern London.

Teaching summary

Dr Symonds currently supervises one PhD student.

He teaches two courses on the MA in Early Modern Studies: "Information culture in early modern Europe" and "From Archive to Hard Drive". 

He has also taught courses on early modern news culture, as well as survey courses on the "long eighteenth century" and categories and concepts for early modern studies. 


University College London
Doctorate, Doctor of Philosophy | 2007
University of Cambridge
Other higher degree, Master of Philosophy | 2001
University College London
First Degree, Bachelor of Arts (Honours) | 2000