Christopher Hill obit

Marvin Gandall marvin.gandall at
Tue Feb 25 20:08:07 MST 2003

(From London Times -- Hill died Monday)

Christopher Hill
Historian and Master of Balliol College whose influential writings on
17th-century change were imbued with his Marxist beliefs

A former communist who became Master of Balliol College, Oxford, Christopher
Hill had an unparalleled command of the history of 17th-century England. His
books on the period, such as Intellectual Origins of the English Revolution
(1965) and The World Turned Upside Down (1972), broke new ground by placing
ideological and radical causes above the high political questions and

A pioneer of "history from below", Hill used his immense knowledge of
writing, poetry, diaries and pamphlets to give a Marxist explanation for the
events of the mid 17th century. He argued that the period saw a
"revolution", which he compared to the events of 1789 and 1917.

Hill was a member of the Communist Party until 1957, and eight years after
his resignation he became Master of Balliol, having been a Fellow there for
more than 25 years. After he retired in 1978, he…,,60-591156,00.html

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