Dr Adam Budd (PhD, FRHistS, SFHEA)

Senior Lecturer; Cultural History


I completed my PhD at the University of Toronto and took up a lectureship in History in 2013. I have held fellowships at the Wellcome Trust Centre for the History of Medicine (London), the Houghton Library (Harvard), and at the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities (Edinburgh). Despite the passing years, I still can't quite believe that my desk is just a stone's throw away from a world-class copyright library, whose roots lie in 1682, and where David Hume served as Keeper during the 1750s. This period marks my primary areas of teaching and research. 

I am a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, and mentor colleagues through the Edinburgh Teaching Award. I also have taught on the PGDE (Secondary) Programme in the Moray House School of Education. I teach undergraduate and graduate courses on eighteenth-century cultural history, print culture, and historical theory. I enjoy my duties as Director of Postgraduate Taught Programmes and as a cohort lead for our in-house and visiting students.

I am passionate about Widening Participation and working toward racial and ethnic equality in our profession. Close to home, I direct History for Schools and our Global Partnership with Salaam Baalak Trust, an NGO for current and former street children in Delhi. 

You can learn more about my Honours-level course in Print Culture: Edinburgh and London, 1709-1814, and read about a hilarious new letter by David Hume that I identified at the Beinecke Library at Yale. I am thinking about the interest in archival repositories and the fashioning of Enlightenment in the metropole and colonies during eighteenth century. The seminars on my Special Subject on "The Archival Turn" are an intellectual highlight of my timetable.

External appointments

I am Secretary of Education and Chair of the Education Policy Committee at the Royal Historical Society, where I also serve as a Trustee. I have been an RHS Councillor since 2018 and am a former Chair of the RHS Alexander Prize (2021-22). Read about our national education initiatives and prizes.

I was nominated to the AHRC Peer Review College in 2022.

I am the History reviews editor for the Journal for Eighteenth-Century Studies (Wiley Blackwell). If you are a late-stage PhD student or ECR and wish to write a review, please get in touch.

I am also a member of the Advisory Committee of JISC Historical Texts.

I have been a contributing editor of The Scriblerian and the Kit Kats since 2010. I review for a number of publishers, newspapers and journals, including Routledge, Cambridge UP, English Historical Review, Historical Journal, Journal of Eighteenth-Century Studies, Scottish Historical Review, and The TLS. 

Useful Links


Circulating Enlightenment: primary sources with e-learning modules www.millar-project.ed.ac.uk



Responsibilities & affiliations



Awarded the Principal's Medal for Contribution to the Community, 2019

Winner of the Ian Campbell Award for Best Overall Teacher in the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, 2017

Co-author: RHS Report on Race and Ethnic Equality in UK History

Other affiliated schools


Affiliated research centres

Edinburgh Centre for Global History

Undergraduate teaching

I teach undergraduate courses on eighteenth-century cultural history and historical theory; I particularly enjoy teaching British History 1 (from c.1558) to first-year undergraduates. You can learn more about my Honours-level course in Print Culture: Edinburgh and London, 1709-1814. This year, I will be teaching

  • Print Culture: Edinburgh and London, 1709-1814 (Course director)
  • Postgraduate Directed Reading in Historical Scholarship, 1835-1985

I supervise Honours dissertations on eighteenth-century history, cultural history, and historiography. 

Postgraduate teaching


Winner of the Ian Campbell Award for Best Overall Teacher in the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, 2017

Open to PhD supervision enquiries?


Areas of interest for supervision

I would be happy to discuss potential research projects on any aspect of reading, writing, and commissioning of literary materials, in Scotland and England, c.1720-1810. I also supervise research in American, British, and European historical writing, particularly on race and ethnicity,  c.1750-1950. 

Current PhD students supervised


Research summary


  • Britain & Ireland
  • Europe
  • Scotland


  • Comparative & Global History
  • Culture
  • Gender
  • Ideas
  • Language & Literature
  • Medicine, Science & Technology


  • Eighteenth Century
  • Twentieth Century & After

I am interested in the cultural contexts and intellectual trends that define the history of historical scholarship in the West—mainly in the eighteenth and in the twentieth centuries. The second edition of my textbook in the history of historical scholarship, The Modern Historiography Reader: Western Sources, will published by Routledge in late 2021. I examine the fitful emergence of history as an academic discipline, in Europe, in the Cambridge Companion to Nineteenth-Century Thought (Cambridge UP, 2019).

I also have published on the ways in which print culture shaped social and intellectual history: in my book on the Edinburgh-trained physician-poet John Armstrong (1709-79), and on the civil disobedience, among publishers and readers, in response to government efforts to censor news of the Malt Tax riots in Glasgow, during the summer of 1725.

In 2013, I was awarded an AHRC Early-Career Research Grant, which enabled me to examine material elements of Enlightenment literary culture. I spent the next three years focussing on the commissioning, production, marketing, buying, selling, and suppression of Scottish publications in eighteenth-century London. My monograph, Circulating Enlightenment: The Career and Correspondence of Andrew Millar, 1725-1768, is in print with  Oxford UP. I regret it's so pricey: I wish that were my call. 

Click here for a full review of Dr Budd's recent research activities.

Current research interests

Click here for a full review of Dr Budd's recent research activities.

Past research interests

One of my current projects examines the troubled but productive collaboration between the republican philanthropist Thomas Hollis (1730-74) and the publisher

Affiliated research centres

Project activity

One of my current projects examines the troubled but productive collaboration between the republican philanthropist Thomas Hollis (1730-74) and the publisher Andrew Millar (1705-68). This involved numerous engravers and illustrators from the Society of the Arts in London, and the commissioning of several important works of 17th-c "liberty" literature--much of it surviving in libraries across Scotland, Europe, and particularly in the US. I am intrigued by the prospect that the intellectual history of the Enlightenment was fostered--if not dependent--on the philanthropic supporters and financiers of the technical arts.

Explore my open-access research site, on Millar and associated topics, Circulating Enlightenment, and tell me what you think.

The list below is a subset of the information held on the University of Edinburgh PURE system, and includes Books, Chapters, Articles and Conference contributions. For a full list, including details of other publication types (e.g. reviews), please see the Edinburgh Research Explorer page for Dr Adam Budd.

Books - Authored

Budd, A. (2020) Circulating Enlightenment: The Career and Correspondence of Andrew Millar, 1725-68. Oxford: Oxford University PressDOI: https://doi.org/10.1093/actrade/9780199557172.book.1

Budd, A. (2011) John Armstrong's The Art of Preserving Health: Eighteenth-Century Sensibility in Practice. Farnham, Surrey: Ashgate Publishing

Budd, A. (2009) The Modern Historiography Reader: Western Sources. London: Routledge


Budd, A. (2007) Why Clarissa Must Die: Richardson's Tragedy and Editorial Heroism. Eighteenth-Century Life, 31(3), pp. 1-28DOI: https://doi.org/10.1215/00982601-2007-001

Budd, A. (2002) ‘Merit in distress': The Troubled Success of Mary Barber. The Review of English Studies (RES), 53(210), pp. 204-227DOI: https://doi.org/10.1093/res/53.210.204

Budd, A. (2001) Moral correction: The refusal of revision in Henry Fielding's Amelia. Lumen, 20, pp. 1-17


Budd, A. (2019) Historical methods in Europe and America. In: Claeys, G. (ed.) The Cambridge Companion to Nineteenth-Century Thought. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, pp. 95-122DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781107337541.006

Budd, A. (2018) Andrew Millar's 'Good Vouchers': The malt tax crisis and trade in controversy. In: Benchimol, A. and McKeever, G. (eds.) Cultures of Improvement in Scottish Romanticism, 1707-1840. New York; Abingdon: Routledge, pp. 19-50DOI: https://doi.org/10.4324/9781351056427

Budd, A. (2008) Aesthetic Sensibility and the Contours of Sympathy through Hume's Insertions to the Treatise. In: Dick, A. and Lupton, C. (eds.) Theory and Practice in the Eighteenth Century: Writing Between Philosophy and Literature. London : Pickering & Chatto, pp. 109-122