William Poole

John Galsworthy Fellow and Tutor in English; Fellow Librarian
MA DPhil Oxon

William Poolewilliam.poole@new.ox.ac.uk

William Poole was educated at New College and Linacre College from 1995-2000, before taking up a Research Fellowship at Downing College, Cambridge, from 2000-2004, after which he returned in 2004 to New College as a Tutorial Fellow in English. He is also the Fellow Librarian.


All aspects of English literature c. 1500-c. 1830.

Research Interests

William Poole’s research is in the field of early-modern literary and intellectual history and bibliography. He has written on the interrelations of science and biblical criticism, the history of libraries and of museums, antiquarianism, the origins of science-fiction, utopianism, artificial languages, and more generally the role of manuscript writings in the age of the printed book, and the history of the printed book itself. He is currently co-editing the correspondence of the antiquary John Aubrey, and solely editing the correspondence of scientist Robert Hooke. Other interests include the Latin scholarship of the age, Jacobean academic drama, and early European sinology, c. 1580-1740, the subject of his next monograph. The English writers on whom he has published most extensively in recent years are John Milton, Francis Godwin, Francis Lodwick, Robert Hooke, and John Aubrey. He is also, with James Willoughby, the co-editor of the Bibliographical Society’s journal, The Library, and for the college he edits New College Notes.

Selected Publications

Five recent books or editions are: 

  • John Aubrey and the Advancement of Learning. Oxford: Bodleian Library, 2010. 
  • The World-Makers: Scientists of the Restoration and the Search for the Origins of the Earth. Oxford: Peter Lang, 2010.
  • Francis Lodwick, Writings on Language, Theology, and Utopia, ed. Henderson and Poole. Oxford: OUP, 2010. 
  • Milton and the Idea of the Fall. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005; paperback 2009.
  • Francis Godwin, ed. Poole. The Man in the Moone (1638). An edition with ancillary texts. Ontario: Broadview Press, 2009.