Leading historian and UN graduate to publish book on Royal diplomacy

Date 12.11.2015

Dr Matthew Glencross, who graduated from the University of Northampton in 2007, is to publish his debut book next month, entitled: The State Visits of Edward VII:  Reinventing Royal Diplomacy for the Twentieth Century.

The book’s synopsis reads:

‘Prince of Pleasure’, ‘selfish’, ‘cruel’, ‘Mr Toad’ – a selection of terms applied to Edward VII, thanks to his reputation as one of history’s most notorious playboy monarchs. Yet he was much more than this, being seen by contemporaries as one of the leading diplomats of his day, and – as this book reveals – a shrewd user of the trappings of monarchy in the shape of public pomp and ceremony. Drawing on the Royal Archives and contemporary political and media sources, The State Visits of Edward VII explores his revival of the British Monarchy’s use of active royal diplomacy on the European stage, through the re-establishment of the tradition of the overseas royal state visit. It forces a reassessment of the positive nature of the personal and political relationship between Edward VII and his royal relatives including the Kaiser – all fellow members of what he called the Trade Union of Kings – and of their contribution to European diplomacy during the key years of 1901 to 1910.

After completing the History BA (Hons) at the University of Northampton, Dr Glencross went on to do a PhD with the Institute of Contemporary British History, at King’s College London, where he is now a Visiting Professor. He is also a regular contributor to television and radio on all matters monarchical, as well as an editor of the forthcoming publication The Windsor Dynasty 1910 to the Present: ‘Long to Reign over Us’?.

Dr Glencross commented:  “The sheer level of dedication the staff had to the students at Northampton inspired me to go into academia myself.  I still consider them as role models in my career today.”

The University of Northampton’s Dr Drew Gray, Senior Lecturer in History of Crime taught Matthew during his degree. He commented: “From the very first day in Welcome Week, Matthew’s enthusiasm for history was clear, and it never wavered. We are very proud of his achievements and everyone in the history department wishes him well and hopes that he can be an inspiration to our current students.”

Dr Matthew Glencross’ book, The State Visits of Edward VII: Reinventing Royal Diplomacy for the Twentieth Century (ISBN: 9781137548993), will be published by Palgrave in October.


Pictured: Dr Matthew Glencross outside Number 10 Downing Street, where he was recently invited to discuss his research.​