Francis J. Haverfield

Francis John Haverfield, FBA (8 November 1860 at Shipston-on-Stour – 1 October 1919) was an English ancient historian, archaeologist, and academic. From 1907 to 1919 he held the Camden Professorship of Ancient History at the University of Oxford.

Francis J. Haverfield
Francis John Haverfield

(1860-11-08)8 November 1860
Shipston-on-Stour, Warwickshire, England
Died1 October 1919(1919-10-01) (aged 58)
Academic background
Alma materNew College, Oxford
Academic advisorsTheodor Mommsen
Academic work
DisciplineAncient history and archaeology
InstitutionsBrasenose College, Oxford
Notable students


Educated at Winchester College[1] and the University of Oxford, he also worked under Theodor Mommsen. In 1907 he became Camden Professor of Ancient History at Oxford.


Haverfield was the first to undertake a scientific study of Roman Britain and is considered by some to be the first theorist to tackle the issue of the Romanization of the Roman Empire. Some consider him the innovator of the discipline of Romano-British archaeology.[2] His works include The Romanization of Roman Britain (1905)[3] (which originated as a lecture to the British Academy and for which he is best known),[4] Ancient Town Planning (1913),[5] and The Roman Occupation of Britain (1924), many monographs, and the authoritative chapters he contributed to the Victoria History of the Counties of England. He excavated the Roman fort at Hardknott, the site of ancient Mediobogdum in Cumbria.[6] He collected and published known Latin inscriptions in Britain.[7]

He gave the Rhind Lectures in 1905 and 1907, on Roman Britain.[citation needed]

Haverfield is credited as playing a prominent role in creation of both the Society for the Promotion of Roman Studies and the British School at Rome.[8]

He was on the governing body of Abingdon School from 1907 to 1919 and was a supporter of the school.[9]


Among his students was the archaeologist and topographer Thomas Ashby (1874–1931), the first scholar and third director of the British School at Rome, the Oxford historian, archaeologist, and philosopher R. G. Collingwood (1889–1943) and the archaeologist and anthropologist John Garstang (1876–1956).


  1. ^ Sabben-Clare, James. Winchester College. Paul Cave Publications, 1981. p. 187
  2. ^ Philip Freeman (2007). The Best Training-ground for Archaeologists: Francis Haverfield and the Invention of Romano-British Archaeology. Oxbow. ISBN 978-1-84217-280-3.
  3. ^ F. (Francis) Haverfield (January 2012). The Romanization of Roman Britain. HardPress. ISBN 978-1-290-35685-5.
  4. ^ Fulford, M. 2008. "Review Article - The Best Training Ground for Archaeologists: Francis Haverfield and the invention of Romano-British Archaeology", The Antiquaries Journal, p481.
  5. ^ F. (Francis ) Haverfield (16 April 2014). Ancient Town-Planning. Bookpubber. GGKEY:G06BW3ESND5.
  6. ^ Francis Haverfield (1893). The Roman Fort on Hardknott, Known as Hardknott Castle. T. Wilson.
  7. ^ Francis Haverfield (1892). Roman Inscriptions in Britain: 1888–1890. William Pollard & Company.
  8. ^ Van Buren, A. W. (1919). "In Memorian – Francis John Haverfield". The Classical Journal. 15: 169–172.
  9. ^ "Donors of Prizes" (PDF). The Abingdonian.

External linksEdit

Academic offices
Preceded by
Henry Francis Pelham
Camden Professor of Ancient History
Succeeded by
Henry Stuart Jones