Michael Whitby

L. Michael Whitby is a British ancient historian of Late Antiquity. He specialises in late Roman history, early Byzantine history and historiography. He is currently pro-vice-chancellor and head of the College of Arts and Law at the University of Birmingham.

Early life

Whitby read Literae Humaniores at Corpus Christi College, University of Oxford.[1] He then spent three years working as a civil servant in the Scottish Office. He returned to Oxford to conduct postgraduate study in Byzantine history.[2]

Academic career

Whitby held a junior research fellowship at Merton College, Oxford.[3] In 1987, he joined the Ancient History department at the University of St Andrews. He became head of department in 1993 and received a personal chair in 1995 as Professor of Ancient History.[2]

He was Professor of Classics and Ancient History at the University of Warwick,[4] having joined the Department of Classics and Ancient History in 1996.[5] He also served as pro-vice-chancellor 'Teaching, Learning and Quality' from 2003,[6] and then 'Academic Planning and Resources'.[1]

On 1 September 2010, he became pro-vice-chancellor and head of College of Arts and Law at the University of Birmingham.[1]


In 2007, Whitby was awarded a Doctor of Letters (DLitt) honorary degree by the University of Warwick.[7] He received one of the 2009 Distinguished Book Awards from the Society for Military History for The Cambridge History of Greek and Roman Warfare.[8]


  • The Emperor Maurice and his Historian: Theophylact Simocatta on Persian and Balkan Warfare (1988).
  • Chronicon Paschale 284–628 AD (1989), with Mary Whitby.
  • The Cambridge Ancient History XIV; AD 425–600 (2000), co-editor.
  • Rome at War AD 293–696 (2002).
  • The Cambridge History of Ancient Warfare (2005), co-editor.
  • Christian Persecution, Martyrdom and Orthodoxy (2006).
  • Sparta. New York: Routledge (2002).


  1. "Birmingham appoints Whitby to lead College of Arts and Law". My Science. 7 July 2010. Archived from the original on 7 March 2014. Retrieved 28 July 2013.
  2. "Professor Michael Whitby". University of Birmingham. Retrieved 28 July 2013.
  3. "PROFESSOR MICHAEL WHITBY, PRO-VICE-CHANCELLOR". University of Warwick. Retrieved 28 July 2013.
  4. Philip Sabin; Hans van Wees; Michael Whitby, eds. (2007). The Cambridge history of Greek and Roman warfare. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 9780521857796.
  5. "Professor Michael Whitby". University of Warwick. 3 June 2010. Retrieved 28 July 2013.
  6. "General Meeting - Closing Remarks". University of Warwick. 19 December 2006. Archived from the original on 16 May 2012. Retrieved 28 July 2013.
  7. "Higher Doctorates for Warwick People". University of Warwick. 17 July 2007. Retrieved 28 July 2013.
  8. "Distinguished Book Awards". Society for Military History. Retrieved 28 July 2013.