Jonathan Reimer

Associate Professor of History and John H. Van Gorden Chair in History


Dr. Jonathan Reimer is the John H. Van Gorden Assistant Professor of History.  He is an early modern historian who is especially fascinated by the web of religious, political, and social changes that we call the English Reformation(s).  His work examines the printers, preachers, and politicians who radically transformed British religion and culture in the wake of Henry VIII’s famous break with Rome.  His publications combine history, theology, and bibliography and can be found in journals such as Reformation, The Journal of Ecclesiastical History, Church History, Augustiniana, The Journal of World History, The Library, Notes & Queries, and Transactions of the Cambridge Bibliographical Society.  He is presently completing his first book on the life and writing of the Tudor clergyman and bestselling devotional author Thomas Becon (1512-1567), which will be published by Princeton University Press.  He is also researching a second book on the phenomenon of religious recantation in Reformation Britain and co-authoring a third book entitled The Spiritual Discipline of History.  He is also committed to writing for audiences beyond the academy in publications like First Things and Tui Motu InterIslands

Before joining the faculty at Eastern University, he taught at St Mark’s and Corpus Christi College in Vancouver, Canada, and at the Margaret Beaufort Institute of Theology in Cambridge, England.  He was also a Postdoctoral Fellow with the Society for Renaissance Studies.  He is privileged to live with his fiercely intelligent and inexhaustibly interesting wife Thea (herself a theologian and a scholar) and their imperious, yet loveable, cat Mollie.


Ph.D., History, University of Cambridge
Th.M., Theology, Regent College
M.A., History, Regent College
B.A. (Hons.), History, University of British Columbia

Classes Taught
  • HIST 160 - Ancient Western Thought and Civilization
  • HIST 318 - Medieval History
  • HONR 161 - Medieval and Renaissance Europe
Professional Associations and Services
  • Sixteenth Century Society
  • American Society of Church History
  • Society for Reformation Studies
Select Publications
  • “Selling Forbidden Evangelical Books in Early Tudor Cambridge” Transactions of the Cambridge Bibliographical Society  
  • “The Lost Works of Thomas Becon” The Library 
  • “Tobit or Not Tobit” First Things May (2020): 59-62.
  • “Another Lost Work by Thomas Becon” Notes & Queries 66:3 (2019): 377-380.
  • “Thomas Becon: A Popular Devotional Writer” in Sources of the Christian Self: A Cultural History of Christian Identities eds. James Houston and Jens Zimmerman (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2018), pp. 411-422.
  • “John Calvin: Scholar, Exile, Pastor.” Tui Motu InterIslands March (2017): 20-21.
  • “Thomas Becon’s Henrician Writings: Composition and County Patronage, 1541-1543” Reformation 21:1 (2016): 8-24.
  • “History as Polemical Theology in Elizabethan England: Thomas Becon’s Relikes of Rome” in Themes of Polemical Theology Across Early Modern Literary Genres eds. Svorad Savarský, Lucy R. Nichols (Cambridge: Cambridge Scholars Press, 2016), pp. 15-26.
  • “Stir Up the Heart: The Use, Protreptic Purpose and the Theological Significance of the Verb Excitare in Augustine’s Confessions” Augustiniana 63:1-4 (2013): 155-172.