Specialisation: History; British; English; South Australia; Australia
Wilfrid Prest held a personal chair in History at the University of Adelaide from 1991-2002 and an ARC Australian Professorial Fellowship from 2002-2007. He is currently Professor Emeritus and a Visiting Research Fellow in the Law School and the School of History and Politics. University of Adelaide; a Fellow of Queen’s College, University of Melbourne, and a member of the Council of the Selden Society.
Rhodes Scholar, Victoria and New College Oxford, 1962-65
Lecturer, Department of History, University of Adelaide, 1966-69
Assistant Professor, Department of History, Johns Hopkins University, 1969-71
Senior Lecturer, Department of History, University of Adelaide, 1972-78; Reader, 1978-90
Visiting Fellow, All Souls College, Oxford, 1975
Chairman of the Board, Art Gallery of South Australia, 1978-84
Fellow, Law and Public Affairs Program, Princeton University, 2001-2
Honorary Fellow (2006-10) and Fellow (2010-), Queen’s College, University of Melbourne
Council, Selden Society, London, 2010-
Fellow of the Royal Historical Society
Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities
Prest’s current research centres on the history of English law from the Glorious Revolution (1688) to the accession of George III in 1760, as part of his contribution to volume IX of The Oxford History of the Laws of England, as one of three co-authors. Prest is also general editor of the Oxford Blackstone, a new variorum edition of Sir William Blackstone’s Commentaries on the Laws of England, published in 4 volumes by Oxford University Press. OUP have also published his William Blackstone: Law and Letters in the Eighteenth Century (2008, 2012).
Prest’s other publications include Albion Ascendant: English History 1660-1815, a volume in the Short Oxford History of the Modern World Series (Oxford University Press, 1998), The Rise of the Barristers: a Social History of the English Bar 1590-1640 (Clarendon Press, 1986, 1991) and The Inns of Court under Elizabeth I and the Early Stuarts 1590-1640 (Longman, 1972), as well as numerous papers in scholarly journals.
He edited The Wakefield Companion to South Australian History (Wakefield Press, 2001), and was co-editor with Sharyn Roach Anleu of Litigation Past and Present (University of New South Wales Press, 2003), a volume derived from a workshop originally held under the auspices of the Academy. He has also edited and contributed to Pasts Present: History at Australia’s Third University (Wakefield Press, 2014) and Re-interpreting Blackstone’s Commentaries: a Seminal Text in National and International Contexts (Hart Publishing, 2014). .