John T.R. Terry

John T.R. Terry

Ph.D. Candidate (ABD)

Advisor: Paul J.E. Kershaw

Phone: 434-466-6258

Email: johntrterry (at)

Fields & Specialties

Early medieval monasticism, hagiography, the natural world in late antiquity and the early middle ages


  • Ph.D. University of Virginia (expected Fall 2014)
    • Ph.D. Dissertation: "Imagining Nature and Creating Sacred Landscapes in Early Medieval England and Francia, c. 400-850"
    • Languages (reading knowledge): Latin (mastery qualification, 2010), German (proficiency qualification, 2009), French.
    • Comprehensive Exam Qualifications (April 2011): Roman Republic and Empire (Elizabeth Meyer), Late Antiquity and Early Medieval Europe (Paul Kershaw), Medieval and Renaissance Italy, Early Modern Europe (Duane Osheim), Early Modern England and Reformation (Paul Halliday)
  • M.A. University of Virginia, History, 2010
  • B.A. University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, Summa Cum Laude, History and Classics, 2008
    • "Memory, Nostalgia, and the Rhetoric of Loss in Bede's Historia Ecclesiastica," supervised by Lynda L. Coon. Recipient, Gordon H. McNeil Award for an Outstanding Research Paper
  • Classics Tripos Part II, Cambridge University, Corpus Christi College, 2007 (Year Abroad)


  • Ph.D. Dissertation (in progress): "Environmental Communities: Creating Landscapes and Constructing Identities in Early Medieval Europe, 400-900"
  • M.A. Thesis: "Æthelwulf's De abbatibus and the Creation of Monastic Foundational Identity" (May 2010)
  • Paper Presentation: "'These Rural Woodlands': The Conquest of Space and Landscape in Merovingian Francia, c. 480-600," International Medieval Congress, Leeds University (July 2013).
  • Paper Presentation: "The Rhetoric of Foundational Space in Anglo-Saxon England," International Congress on Medieval Studies, U. of Western Michigan, Kalamazoo (May 2011)
  • Paper Presentation: "Constructing Identity in Eighth-Century Northumbria: Nostalgia, Memory, and the Rhetoric of Loss in Bede's Ecclesiastical History," Bertoti Graduate History Conference, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg (March 2009).
  • Paper Publication: "Nostalgia, Memory, and the Rhetoric of Loss in Bede's Ecclesiastical History of the English People," Inquiry: The Undergraduate Research Journal of the University of Arkansas 9 (2008), 92-102. 
    • Recipient: Gordon H. McNeil Award for an Outstanding Research Paper

Teaching Experience

  • 2013 Spring: Instructor, HIEU 4051, "Landscapes of Belief: Paganism, Christianity and Islam in the Early Medieval World, c. 500-1100."
    • Course website
    • This course examines the rise of Christianity in the Latin West after the collapse of the Roman Empire; it will concentrate on interactions among Christians and non-Christian groups, c. 500-1100 (such as pagans, Vikings, Muslims and Jews) as a means of understanding how Christianity developed from a cult to a universalizing religion. This period after the slow collapse of Roman control in the West is crucial to any larger attempt to understand how a community of believers became “Christendom,” a totalizing concept of the body of the faithful. By the ninth century, Christianitas had become shorthand for the institutional structure of the priesthood and monasticism. This class will approach the period c. 500-1100 as one in which interactions with the “other” served as means by which Christian intellectuals argued for the ubiquity of the faith. We will explore the Christianization in the later Roman Empire under Constantine and after (c. 300-450) as a basis for assessing Christian understandings of the pagan landscape and culture during Anglo-Saxon England’s “conversion period,” as well as the theology of claiming and controlling such cultures by insular and, later, Frankish missionaries in the eighth and ninth centuries (broadly, c. 500-900). We will also consider the aggressive imperial expansion of Carolingian rule in Europe in the later eighth and ninth centuries under Charlemagne and his heirs. Finally, we will discuss in the last two classes the interactions between Christians and Muslims in Spain (c. 711-900) and the rise of crusading cultures, both against outsiders (Muslims) and home-grown threats (heretics) during the period c. 1000-1100. 
  • 2013 Spring: TA, HIEU 3061, "Anglo-Saxon England" (Paul Kershaw). 
  • 2012 Spring: TA, HIEU 3021, "Greek and Roman Warfare" (J.E. Lendon). 
  • 2011 Fall: TA, HIEU 2001, "Western Civilization" (Erin Rowe). 
    • Lecture Experience: "The Fall of the Roman Empire" and "Asceticism and the Byzantine Empire," (October 2011). 
  • 2011 Spring: TA, HIEU 3061, "Anglo-Saxon England" (Paul Kershaw). 
  • 2010 Fall: TA, HIEU 3211, "Renaissance Italy" (Duane Osheim). 
  • 2010 Spring: TA, HIEU 3061, "Angl0-Saxon England" (Paul Kershaw). 
  • 2009 Fall: TA, HIEU 2061, "Birth of Europe," (Paul Kershaw). 

Honors & Awards

University of Virginia, 2008-present

  • The Dr. Frank Finger Graduate Fellowship for Teaching, 2014
  • Fellow, Institute of the Humanities and Global Cultures, 2013-present.
  • Buckner W. Clay Award in the Humanities, Institute of the Humanities and Global Cultures, 2013-14.
  • Raven Fellowship for Summer Summer Research, 2013.
  • Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences Summer Research Fellowship, 2013.
  • Robert J. Huskey Travel Fellowship, 2013.

University of Arkansas, 2004-08

  • Sturgis Fellowship, 2004-08.
  • Gordon H. McNeil Award for an Outstanding Research Paper, 2008.
  • Phi Beta Kappa, 2008.
  • Phi Alpha Theta History Honor Society, 2008.
  • Eta Sigma Phi Classics Honor Society, 2007.
  • Student Undergraduate Research Fellow, 2007-08.


Corcoran Department of History
University of Virginia
Nau Hall - South Lawn
Charlottesville, VA 22904

tel: (434) 924-7147; fax: (434) 924-7891
office: M-F 8 am to 4:30 pm
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