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Professor Deborah Howard FBA

The art and architecture of Venice and the Veneto; Renaissance architectural history and theory; the relationship between Italy and the Eastern Mediterranean; and music and architecture in the Renaissance
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About this Fellow

Deborah Howard is Professor Emerita of Architectural History in the Faculty of Architecture and History of Art in the University of Cambridge, where she is a Fellow of St John's College. A graduate of Cambridge and of the Courtauld Institute of Art, she taught at University College London, Edinburgh University and the Courtauld Institute, before returning to Cambridge in 1992. She was Head of Department of History of Art in Cambridge from 2002-9 (with a sabbatical break). She has held visiting appointments at Yale (Summer Term program in London), Harvard (Aga Khan program and the Villa I Tatti), the National Gallery of Art in Washington DC, Smith College, Princeton, and the Universities of Melbourne and Queensland. She is a Trustee of Venice in Peril. Her principal research interests are the art and architecture of Venice and the Veneto; Italian Renaissance architecture and theory; music and architecture in the Renaissance; and the relationship between Italy and the Eastern Mediterranean. She is one of the leaders of a four-year interdisciplinary research project entitled Domestic Devotions: The Place of Piety in the Italian Renaissance Home 1400-1600, funded by an ERC Synergy Grant (2013-17). She currently holds a Leverhulme Emeritus Fellowship (2017-19) for the project 'Technological Invention and Architecture in the Veneto in the Early Modern Period.



Current post

  • Professor Emerita of Architectural History, University of Cambridge; Fellow, St John's College, Cambridge

Past Appointments

  • Professor Emerita of Architectural History; Fellow, St John's College, Cambridge, University of Cambridge, 1970

British Academy Appointments

  • Member of Council, 2013 - 2016


Jacopo Sansovino: Architecture and Patronage in Renaissance Venice 1975, rev. edn. 1987

The Architectural History of Venice 1980, 1987, rev. enlarged edn. 2002

Scottish Architecture from the Reformation to the Restoration 1560 - 1660 1995

Venice and the East: the Impact of the Islamic World on Venetian Architecture 1100-1500 2000

Sound and space in Renaissance Venice: Architecture, Music, Acoustics 2009

Venice Disputed: Marc’Antonio Barbaro and Venetian Architecture 1550-1600 2011

Other Early Modern History to 1850 Fellows

Professor Denis Crouzet

Religions history, 'Histoire de l'imaginaire', Wars of religion, War & peace during the European Renaissance, astrology, early modern political thought.

Professor Joachim Whaley

The Holy Roman Empire in its European context from the fifteenth century to 1806; the legacy of the Holy Roman Empire in German-speaking central Europe from 1806 to the present

Professor Knud Haakonssen

History of moral, political & legal thought 1600-1800, especially natural law & rights; Enlightenment in Germany, Scandinavia & Scotland; scholarly editions of eighteenth century texts.

Professor Peter Mandler

Modern British history, especially cultural, intellectual and social; the histories of the humanities and social sciences in comparative perspective