German Historical Institute London

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The German Historical Institute London (DHIL) or German Historical Institute London (GHIL) is a scientific institution for research into British history and the representation of German history and historical studies in Great Britain.

History and Development

The establishment of the institute goes back to an initiative of Carl Haase , then director of the Lower Saxony State Archives, in 1968. A British-German Historians' Circle was formed from German and British historians in 1973. It began to organize scientific conferences with financial support from the Volkswagen Foundation . In 1975 the Federal Ministry for Research and Technology provided the funds to found the institute. The project received special support from the English side through the historian Arthur Geoffrey Dickens . It was officially opened under its first director Paul Klukein 1976. In 1983 the institute moved into a historic 18th century building in central London .

Wolfgang J. Mommsen , who was its director from 1977, played an important role in the institute's upswing . Numerous publications by the institute are based on scientific conferences with an international group of participants. From the beginning, the emphasis on comparative research has been important. These include studies of the bourgeoisie or the nobility in England and Germany during the 16th century, questions about political violence or the development of the welfare state. A publication on the structure of the Nazi state dealt only with German history.

Other directors were: Adolf M. Birke (1985–1994), Peter Wende (1994–2000), Hagen Schulze (2000–2006) and Andreas Gestrich (2006–2018).

Today's structure and research focus

In addition to the scientific exchange, the institute also awards grants to British and German students, doctoral candidates and post-docs. Lecture events and symposia take place regularly in the rooms of the DHIL. The institute has an extensive library of 70,000 volumes and numerous journals for research purposes. An in-house bulletin is published twice a year.

His main focus today is German-British relations, English history of the late Middle Ages and the early modern period , British history in the 19th and 20th centuries, and the history of the Empire and the Commonwealth .

Today the institute is supported by the Max Weber Foundation . This will continue to be financed by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF). Christina von Hodenberg is the director of the DHIL . The DHIL is a partner organization of the German History Society .

The institute is also a collaboration partner in the project to open up the Prize Papers (documents from the prize court files, from the time of the naval wars between 1600 and 1817).


  • Ian Kershaw : The German Historical Institute in London . In: Geschichte und Gesellschaft Vol. 12 1986 pp. 134-138
  • German Historical Institute, London 1976-2001 . London 2001
  • German Historical Institute London 1976-2001 . London 2001

Web links

See also

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Prize Papers. Cataloging - Digitization - Presentation

Coordinates: 51 ° 31 '8 "  N , 0 ° 7' 26"  W.