Matthew Gabriele is a professor of medieval studies and the chair of the Department of Religion and Culture at Virginia Tech.
His research and teaching generally explore religion, violence, nostalgia, and apocalypse, whether manifested in the Middle Ages or the modern world. This includes events and ideas such as the Crusades, the so-called “Terrors of the Year 1000,” and medieval religious and political life. He has also presented and published on modern medievalism, such as recent white supremacist appropriations of the Middle Ages and pop culture phenomena like Game of Thrones and the video game Dragon Age.
Gabriele has published numerous academic articles and several books, including An Empire of Memory: The Legend of Charlemagne, the Franks, and Jerusalem before the First Crusade, which received the Southeastern Medieval Association’s Best First Book in 2013. He has also presented at dozens of national and international conferences and has given invited talks at Harvard, Princeton, Georgetown, the University of California-Berkeley, the University of Wisconsin-Madison, the University of Virginia, the University of Tennessee-Knoxville, and Westfälische Wilhelms Üniversität-Münster.
Gabriele is a regular contributor to Forbes.com; his public writing has appeared in such places as The Washington Post, The Guardian, The Daily Beast, Slate, and The Roanoke Times; and interviews with him have aired locally, nationally, and internationally. He completed a bachelor’s degree in history at the University of Delaware and a master’s degree and a doctorate in medieval history at the University of California, Berkeley.
- Medieval Studies
- Intellectual History
- PhD, Medieval History, University of California, Berkeley, 2005
- MA, Medieval History, University of California, Berkeley, 1998
- BA, History, University of Delaware, 1997
- Chair, Virginia Tech Department of Religion and Culture
- Elected Councilor, Medieval Academy of America (2016–19)
- Member, American Historical Association
- Exemplary Department Award, Religion and Culture, 2019
- Inaugural Member, Academy of Faculty Leadership, Virginia Tech, 2016
- “Favorite Faculty” Award, Student Affairs, Virginia Tech, 2012, 2014, 2015, 2016
- Best First Book for An Empire of Memory, Southeastern Medieval Association, 2013
- Departmental Diversity Award, College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences, Virginia Tech, 2012, 2013
- Provost’s Visiting Scholars Award, 2010, 2012
- Certificate of Teaching Excellence, College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences, 2011
- Scholar of the Week, 2011
- Distinguished Lecturer in Medieval Studies, University of Virginia, 2009
- Etienne Gilson Dissertation Award, Medieval Academy of America, 2005
Apocalypse, Prophecy, and the Transformation of the Medieval West (Oxford University Press, under contract).
An Empire of Memory: The Legend of Charlemagne, the Franks, and Jerusalem before the First Crusade (Oxford University Press, 2011).
Apocalypse and Reform from Late Antiquity to the Middle Ages, ed. Matthew Gabriele and James T. Palmer (Routledge, 2018).
The Charlemagne Legend in Medieval Latin Texts, ed. William J. Purkis and Matthew Gabriele (Boydell & Brewer, 2016).
Where Heaven and Earth Meet: Essays on Medieval Europe in Honor of Daniel F. Callahan, ed. Michael Frassetto, Matthew Gabriele, and John D. Hosler (Brill, 2014).
The Legend of Charlemagne in the Middle Ages: Power, Faith, and Crusade, ed. Matthew Gabriele and Jace Stuckey (Palgrave Macmillan, 2008).
Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles
“The Terrors of the Year 1900: The Eleventh Century and a Debate about Modernity,” postmedieval: a journal of medieval cultural studies, 10 (2019), 194–205.
“Debating the ‘Crusade’ in Contemporary America,” The Mediaeval Journal, 6 (2016): 73-92.
“From Prophecy to Apocalypse: The Verb Tenses of Jerusalem in Robert the Monk’s Historia of the First Crusade,” Journal of Medieval History, 42 (2016): 304–16.
“The Last Carolingian Exegete: Pope Urban II, the Weight of Tradition, and Christian Reconquest,” Church History 81 (2012), 796-814.
“The Chosen People of the 11th and 21st Centuries,” Revisiting the ‘Judeo-Christian’ Tradition, special issue of Relegere: Studies in Religion and Reception 2 (2012): 281–90.
“Introduction,” with Benjamin E. Sax, Revisiting the “Judeo-Christian” Tradition, special issue of Relegere: Studies in Religion and Reception 2 (2012): 245–51.
“The Provenance of the Descriptio qualiter Karolus Magnus: Remembering the Carolingians at the Court of King Philip I (1060-1108) before the First Crusade,” Viator 39 (2008): 93–117.
“Asleep at the Wheel? Apocalypticism, Messianism and Charlemagne’s Passivity in the Oxford Chanson de Roland,” Nottingham Medieval Studies 43 (2003): 46–72.
“Introduction,” in The Cultural History of Western Empires in the Middle Ages, ed. Matthew Gabriele (Bloomsbury, 2018), 1–20.
“This time. Maybe this time. Biblical Commentary, Monastic Historiography, and Lost Cause-ism in Tenth- and Eleventh-Century Europe,” in Apocalypse and Reform from Late Antiquity to the Early Middle Ages, ed. Matthew Gabriele and James T. Palmer (Routledge, 2018), 183-203.
(With James T. Palmer) “Introduction,” in Apocalypse and Reform from Late Antiquity to the Early Middle Ages, ed. James T. Palmer and Matthew Gabriele (Routledge, 2018), 1-9.
“Frankish Kingship and the Ghost of Charlemagne in the Exegetical Diplomas of King Philip I of Francia,” in The Charlemagne Legend in Medieval Latin Texts, ed. William Purkis and Matthew Gabriele (Boydell & Brewer, 2016), 9-32.
“Introduction: An Appreciation of Daniel F. Callahan,” in When Heaven Came to Earth: Essays on Medieval Europe in Honor of Daniel F. Callahan, ed. Michael Frassetto, John G. Hosler, and Matthew Gabriele (Brill, 2014), 1–8.
“Waging Guerrilla Warfare against the 19th Century,” in Burn after Reading: Miniature Manifestosfor a Post/Medieval Studies, ed. Eileen Joy and Myra Seaman (Punctum Books, 2014), 39–41.
“Translation of Charlemagne’s Pilgrimage from Benedict of Monte Soratte’s Chronicon,” in Pilgrimage in the Middle Ages, ed. Brett Whalen (University of Toronto Press, 2011), 124–25.
“Prologue,” in The Charlemagne Legend in the Middle Ages: Power, Faith and Crusade, ed. Matthew Gabriele and Jace Stuckey (Palgrave Macmillan, 2008), xiii–xvii.
“Against the Enemies of Christ: The Role of Count Emicho in the Anti-Jewish Violence of the First Crusade,” in Christian Attitudes toward the Jews in the Middle Ages: A Casebook, ed. Michael Frassetto (Routledge, 2006), 61–82.
“Otto III, Charlemagne, and Pentecost 1000 A.D.: A Reconsideration Using Diplomatic Evidence,” in The Year 1000: Religious and Social Response to the Turning of the First Millennium, ed. Michael Frassetto (Palgrave Macmillan, 2002), 111–32.
- International Travel Grant, Virginia Tech, 2013, 2014, 2018
- Jerome Niles Faculty Research Award, College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences, Virginia Tech, 2010, 2017
- Global Partnership Sustainability Award, Virginia Tech, 2015–16
- Humanities Summer Stipend, National Endowment for the Humanities, 2010, 2012
- Jerome Niles Faculty Fellowship, College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences, Virginia Tech, 2011
- Grant Development Award, Institute for Society, Culture, and Environment, Virginia Tech, 2011
- Diversity Enhancement Grant, CIDER (now Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning), Virginia Tech, 2010
- Interdisciplinary Instructional Grant, Center for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching, Virginia Tech, 2009–10
- Learning Technologies iPod Grant, Virginia Tech, 2008
- Summer Institute Participant, “Holy Land & Holy City,” in Oxford, United Kingdom, National Endowment for the Humanities, 2008
- Teaching-Release Grant, Center for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching, Virginia Tech, 2007
- “Miracles and Apocalypse in Fulcher of Chartres’ Historia,” Keynote for the 2019 Religion and Conflict in the Medieval and Early Modern Periods Conference, Nottingham Trent University, Nottingham, United Kingdom, July 2019.
- “All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of thing shall be well: The Future of Medieval Studies,” Keynote for History Festival 2019, University of Kent, Canterbury, United Kingdom, February 2019.
- “Medieval Studies, Medievalism, and Modern Politics (Notes from the Holy War),” Identity/Politics – Medieval/Modern, University of Virginia, September 2018.
- “Historiography and the ‘Terrors of the Year 1000,’” 2018 Compact Seminar Imag(in)ing the End-Times, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, February 2018.
- “Prophecy, Apocalypse, and (Biblical) Lost Cause-ism in the 11th century,” First Millennium Seminar, Georgetown University, April 2017.
- “Apocalypse Then, Prophecy Now: Looking Back, Looking Forward in Frankish Monasteries,” 2017 MARCO Symposium Carolingian Experiments, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, March 2017.
- “The First Lost Cause: Biblical Commentary, Monastic Engagement with the World, and the Local read Globally in 10th and 11th-Century Europe,” Keynote, In Media Res symposium, University of Wisconsin, Madison, May 2016.
- “Exegesis and the Transformation of the Carolingian World,” Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton University, May 2016.
- “Biblical Commentary as History and Lost Cause-ism in the 11-th Century West,” University of Tennessee, Knoxville, September 2015.
- “Escaping the ‘Terrors of the Year 1000:’ How to Think about the Future in the 10th and 11th Centuries,” University of California, Berkeley, September 2013.
- “Frankish Identity, Memory, and Religious Violence before the First Crusade,” Princeton University, April 2012.
- “The Chosen Peoples of the 11th & 21st Centuries,” for Symposium Revisiting the “Judeo-Christian” Tradition, Virginia Tech, October 2011.
- “Reorienting the Medieval West around the Millennium: Thinking from Past to Future,” for Symposium “The Making of Religion? Re-Describing Religious Change in Pre-Modern Europe,” Harvard University, April 2011.
- “Apocalyptic Language and Violence in the 11th Century,” Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster, Germany, June 2010.
- “The Language of Holy War in Contemporary American Discourse,” Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster, Germany, May 2010.
- “Charlemagne, Jerusalem, and Frankish Identity before the First Crusade,” Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster, Germany, May 2010.
- “The Life of the Mind,” University of Delaware, May 2010.
- “How did Crusading Change After 9/11?,” Shenandoah University, April 2010.
- “The Origins of the First Crusade,” Radford University, November 2009.
- “Charlemagne and Empire (Rome and Jerusalem),” Kenyon College, October 2009.
- “The Power of Apocalyptic Rhetoric in the Eleventh-Century West,” University of Virginia, March 2009.
- “Living in the Eleventh Century, Still,” keynote at the Undergraduate Research Symposium, University of Delaware, May 2008.
- “Debating ‘Crusade’ before and after 9/11,” Virginia Tech, October 2007.
- “The Legend of Charlemagne and the Survival of Christendom,” University of California, Berkeley, January 2006.
- “Emicho and the Rhenish Armies of the First Crusade,” The Institute of Historical Research, London, United Kingdom, October 2002.
- Religion and Violence
- Game of Thrones: The Medieval and the Modern
- Age of the Crusades
- Apocalyptic Theories
- The Medieval World
- The Renaissance World
- Investigations in Religion and Culture: Apocalypse
- Investigations in Religion and Culture: Love
- Jews, Christians, and the Idea of Judeo-Christianity
- The Medieval Hero: Warriors and Saints
- Memory and Legend in the Middle Ages
- Religion and Narratives of Conquest
- Prophecy and History
Select Media Mentions
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Smithsonian Magazine, 9/27/2021
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Smithsonian Magazine, 8/3/2021
Article ItemWhat the medieval Olympics looked like , article
Smithsonian Magazine, 7/20/2021
Article ItemA new history changes the balance of power between Ethiopia and medieval Europe , article
Smithsonian Magazine, 6/29/2021
Article ItemGoing medieval on white supremacists , article
NPR, May 2021
Article ItemHow bad analogies undermine our understanding of history , article
Washington Post, 5/3/2021
Article ItemVikings, crusaders, Confederates: Misunderstood historical imagery at the January 6 Capitol insurrection , article
American Historical Association, 1/12/2021
Article ItemDecoding the hate symbols seen at the Capitol insurrection , article
National Geographic, 1/12/2021
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