Ingrid De Smet

Ingrid De Smet

Robert Lehman Visiting Professor
Outwitting Nature, Humans, Nature and Technology
2022-2023 (April-June)
Ingrid De Smet


Ingrid De Smet studied Classics and Medieval Studies at the KU Leuven (Belgium). Following doctoral studies at St John's College, Cambridge, and a Prize Fellowship and British Academy Postdoctoral Fellowship at Magdalen College Oxford, her career is especially associated with the University of Warwick (UK), where she is a Professor of French and Neo-Latin Studies. Ingrid specialises in the intellectual culture of sixteenth- and early seventeenth-century France, the Low Countries, and Italy (Republic of Letters; Wars of Religion; Neo-Latin; Classical tradition; history of scholarship; history of the book). Her research has been supported, amongst others, by the British Academy, the Arts and Humanities Research Board (UK), The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Modern Humanities Research Association, and The Leverhulme Trust. She is a Fellow of the British Academy and Member of the Academia Europea. A former member of the Executive Committee of the Renaissance Society of America and Past President of the International Association of Neo-Latin Studies, Ingrid De Smet has a keen interest in promoting doctoral and early-career research development.

Project Summary

Through various studies on the crossroads between mechanical arts and natural history , Ingrid's research challenges persistent notions of a dichotomy between vernacular and Latin (or Neo-Latin) cultures, between literary and non-literary genres, between knowledge and know-how ("savoir" and "savoir-faire"). It is a threat that has run through my work on the history of hunting (falconry, and more recently fishing) and on locks, keys and seals as instruments of secrecy (and more) - from object to metaphor. At Villa I Tatti, Ingrid will concentrate on a new edition and translation of Pietro Angelio da Barga's unfinished Latin didactic poem on bird-catching ("De Aucupio liber I").