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Harry Bober (1915-1988)- Photo from The Harvard Crimson

Harry Bober (1915–1988) was an American art historian, a university professor, and a writer. He was the first Avalon Professor of the Humanities a New York University (NYU).[1] He wrote and edited several books and published numerous articles on the art, architecture and historiography of the Middle Ages and the early Renaissance period.


Education and early lifeEdit

Bober's started his study of art history at the City University of New York. In 1936, he was among the first group of students to enroll in the Fine Arts Graduate Center at NYU. This would later be known as NYU Institute of Fine Arts. Bober wrote his M.A. thesis under Erwin Panofsky (on the Brussels Apocalypse) in 1939. He married the future art historian Phyllis Pray in 1943, which he meet while attending class at New York University. He joined the U.S. Navy during World War II and after the war, Bober and his wife continued their graduate work. He received his Ph.D., from NYU in 1949, writing his dissertation on medieval books of hours. The 1950-51 year was spent as a senior research fellow at the Warburg Institute. Then in 1954 he returned to New York University as Avalon professor at the Institute of Fine Arts in New York University. He was a founding member and first secretary (1956-1959) of the International Center for Medieval Art, for which he also helped launch Gesta, its scholarly organ. During these years Bober published several facsimile editions of medieval manuscripts for Hans P. Kraus.[2]


Bober taught at Harvard University 1951-54. In 1954 he returned to New York, joining the NYU faculty.[2]

Bober was professor of medieval art at the NYU's Institute of Fine Arts (IFA/NYU)[3] from 1954 until his death in 1988.[4]

He also taught at Queens College, Smith College, and Johns Hopkins University.[1]

Complementing his career as an academic, he served as one of the founding members of the board of directors of the International Foundation for Art Research (IFAR).[5][6][7]

Selected worksEdit

In a statistical overview derived from writings by and about Harry Bober, OCLC/WorldCat encompasses over 110 works in over 150 publications in four languages and over 1,300 library holdings.[8][9]

  • Catalogue of Astrological and Mythological Illuminated Manuscripts of the Latin Middle Ages: English Libraries (1953)
  • Medieval Objects in the Guennal Collection (1975)


  1. ^ a b "Harry Bober, 72, Professor of Medieval Art," New York Times. June 20, 1988.
  2. ^ a b "Bober, Abraham Herschel ("Harry")". Dictionary of Art Historians.
  3. ^ "IFA - About". Retrieved 2013-09-06.
  4. ^ "IFA/NYU, History". Retrieved 2013-09-06.
  5. ^ "". Retrieved 2013-09-06.
  6. ^ Glueck, Grace (May 8, 1970). "Art Group Is Set Up To Judge Attribution". New York Times.
  7. ^ "International Foundation for Art Research (IFAR)-About". IFAR. Retrieved 2013-09-06.
  8. ^ "WorldCat Identities". Retrieved 2013-09-06.
  9. ^ "André Beauneveu and Mehun-sur-Yèvre". 1966-05-08. Retrieved 2013-09-06.


External linksEdit