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Dr Frank Riess

Contact details

Tel: 0208 789 2981

About Dr Frank Riess

Education and career

  • BA (Modern Languages) Oxford 1965; BLitt Oxford 1968; Teaching Assistant UC Berkeley 1968-1970
  • Lecturer in Spanish and Latin American Literature, University of Nottingham 1972-1975
  • MA with Distinction in Medieval Studies Birkbeck College 2001
  • PhD in Early Medieval History Birkbeck¬† 2009
  • From 1975-1999 followed an investment banking career: Left the City to work as Director at Wingate Ventures and pursue academic work at Birkbeck.

Research interests

  • Spanish and French Early Medieval History, with special reference to the post-Roman settlement of Visigoths in Spain and Southern France (fifth to eighth centuries).
  • Carolingian realms of religious and intellectual life spanning the eighth and ninth centuries.
  • If you are interested in pursuing research in any of these areas, you should first read our advice on how to apply for MPhil/PhD research before submitting an application.


  • The Journey of Deacon Bodo from the Rhine to the Guadalquivir. Apostasy and Conversion to Judaism in Early Medieval Europe (Routledge, 2019)
  • La espada encendida and the poetry of William Blake-Source or tradition?¬†Cantalao (A biannual magazine dedicated to the life and work of Pablo Neruda) Volume I Number 2, March 2014, 42-45.
  • Narbonne and its Territory in Late Antiquity. From the Visigoths to the Arabs. (Ashgate, 2013)
  • "From Aachen to Al-Andalus: the journey of Deacon Bodo (823-876)" Early Medieval Europe XIII,2 (2005) 131-157.
  • "Dawn and sunset descriptions in Borges' poetry" Bulletin of Hispanic Studies XLIX,4, (October 1972) 383-397.
  • The Word and the Stone. Language and imagery in Neruda's Canto General (OUP, 1972).

Current work

  • Developing the investigation of a 10th century Visigothic codex with digital imaging techniques.