David Abulafia#


David Abulafia was born at Twickenham, England. His family is a very old Sephardic family that left Spain for Galilee around 1492 and lived for many generations in Tiberias. His wife Anna Sapir Abulafia is a renown historian of Jewish-Christian relations. David Abulafia was educated at St. Paul's School and King's College, Cambridge.

David Abulafia has given lectures in many countries including Italy, Spain, Portugal, France, Germany, the U.S., Japan, Israel and Egypt.

His most influential book is Frederick II: a medieval emperor. It was first published in England in 1988 and reprinted many times in several Italian editions. He has been appointed Commendatore dell'Ordine della Stella della Solidarietà Italiana by the President of Italy in recognition of his writing on Italian history, especially Sicilian history.

Research Interests
Economic, social and political history of the Mediterranean lands in the Middle Ages and Renaissance, especially southern Italy, the Italian 'despotisms' and the Italian islands (viewing Italian history from an unconventionally southern perspective); also the trade and society of the Spanish lands of the Crown of Aragon. More generally, the interaction of the three religions in medieval Spain and Sicily, including the problem of Jewish (and Muslim) 'servitude'. A major interest is the opening of the eastern and western Atlantic in the fifteenth and early sixteenth century, with particular emphasis on the encounter of Europeans with native peoples.

Also the Levant trade, links between Italy and the lands across the Adriatic, and 19th and 20th century historiography of medieval Europe. Now writing a general history of the Mediterranean for Penguin.
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