Derek Beales

Derek Edward Dawson Beales, FBA (born 12 June 1931, Felixstowe) is a British historian.[1] He has written the definitive work on the Holy Roman Emperor Joseph II.[2]

He was educated at the University of Cambridge, where he gained a BA in 1953, an MA and a PhD in 1957.[1] He was appointed a Fellow of Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge in 1955 and a University Lecturer in History in 1965, which he held until 1980.[3] He was then Professor of Modern History at Cambridge until 1997.[3]

He was editor of The Historical Journal from 1971 until 1975.[1] From 1984 until 1987 he was a member of the council of the Royal Historical Society.[1] In 1989 he was elected a fellow of the British Academy.[3]


  • England and Italy, 1859-60 (London: Nelson,1961).
  • From Castlereagh to Gladstone, 1815-1885 (London: Thomas Nelson and Sons Ltd, 1969).
  • Joseph II, Volume I: In the Shadow of Maria Theresa, 1741-1780 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1987).
  • Prosperity and Plunder: European Catholic Monasteries in the Age of Revolution, 1650–1815 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2003).
  • Enlightenment and Reform in 18th-Century Europe (I.B. Tauris, 2005).
  • Joseph II, Volume II: Against the World, 1780–1790 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009).


  1. International Who's Who of Authors and Writers 2004 (London: Routledge, 2003), p. 129.
  2. T. C. W. Blanning, Joseph II (London: Routledge, 2015), p. vii.
  3. Profile, British Academy, retrieved 14 July 2018.

Further reading