Leconfield Lectures

The Leconfield Lecture is named after the first Chairman of the British-Italian Society, Hugh Wyndham, who was Chairman for 12 years in the 1940s and 1950s, and became Lord Leconfield in 1952. After Lord Leconfield’s death in 1963, Sir Ashley Clarke, then Chairman of the Society, inaugurated this series of  prestigious lectures. Since 1978 the Leconfield Lectures have been the main event in the Society’s annual calendar (no Leconfield Lectures were held in the years 1970-72, 1975 or 1977). The lectures have always been given by a speaker of particular distinction. 

2020

Visions of Heaven: Dante and the Art of Divine Light in Painting

Prof Martin Kemp

2019

Orazio and Artemisia Gentileschi: Two Italian Artists at the Court of Charles I

Dr Gabriele Finaldi

2018

Edgar Degas and Italy

Dr Denis V Reidy

2017

The Two Eyes of Europe: Byzantium and Italy

Lord True

2016

The Beginnings of Global Opera

Dr Benjamin Walton

2015

The Ceramic Museum of Casteldilago

Sir Timothy Clifford

2014

Becoming a Musician in Renaissance Italy – or Not…

Dr Bonnie Blackburn

2013

The State of Italy

Mr Bill Emmott

2012

Travelling Texts, Eastern Approaches: Italian Fabulists and the 1001 Nights

Dame Marina Warner

2011

Italo Calvino

Prof Martin McLaughlin

2010

Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and Profane

Dr Andrew Graham-Dixon

2009

Hadrian, the Eternal Emperor

Dr Paul Roberts

2008

Women in Power: Caterina and Maria De Medici and the Artemisia Tapestries

Dr James Bradburne

2007

The Giuseppe Garibaldi Bicentenary

Ms Anita Garibaldi & Prof Daniel Pick

2006

Puccini’s Heroines

Sir Antonio Pappano

2005

Mazzini: Prophet of the Nation

Prof Christopher Duggan

2004

Melo and Drama: The Films of Luchino Visconti and the Music of Nino Rota

Dr Richard Dyer

2003

Herculaneum

Prof Andrew Walace-Hadrill

2002

Justice Italian Style

Mr David Willey

2001

Verdi in His Anniversary Year

Sir Edward Downes

2000

The Future of the Catholic Church and the Papacy

Mr John Wilkins

1999

Can You Have Too Much of Italy? (interview with Mr John Tusa)

Earl Harewood

1998

Thinking Forward on Europe

Lord Hurd

1997

Paradise of Exiles: A View from the Keats-Shelley Memorial House in Rome

Ms Bathsheba Abse

1996

Italy and Britain in Europe: Results and Perspectives

Ambassador Paolo Galli

1995

Anglo-Italians: Ideological Defectors in the First Cold War (1547-1620)

Lord Dacre

1994

The Italian Republic in the Face of the Future

Dr Paul Ginsborg

1993

The Bellini: A Venetian Family Firm

Dr Jennifer Fletcher

1992

Italy and Britain in Europe: The Thoughts of a British Italophile Who Had Spent Some Time in Brussels

Rt Hon Lord Jenkins of Hillhead

1991

Machiavelli: Image and Interpretation

Professor Nicolai Rubinstein

1990

Looking Eastwards and Looking Southwards: The Changing Landscape of Europe

Ambassador Boris Biancheri

1989

The Italian Armistice of 1943

Prof Denis Mack Smith

1988

The Alps as a Cultural Frontier in the Renaissance

Sir John Hale

1987

Italian Caricature and its English Transformations

Sir Ernst Gombrich

1986

Classical Scholarship for a Classical Country: The Problem of Education in Italy from the Risorgimento

Professor Arnaldo Momigliano

1985

The Reputation and Critical Fortune in Britain of Gabriele d'Annunzio

Professor J R Woodhouse

1984

The Norman Kingdom of Sicily

Lord Norwich

1983

Some Reflections on Italian Fascism

Dr Christopher Seton-Watson

1982

Drawing a Future from the Past: Italian Cultural Activities in the United Kingdom

Mr John Drummond

1981

Anglo-Italian Wartime Relations and the Origins of the British-Italian Society

Mr Ruggero Orlando

1980

Italian Foreign Policy and the Development of the European Community in the Mediterranean

Ambassador Andrea Cagiati

1979

The Governability of Democracies: The British and Italian Cases

Mr Arrigo Levi

1978

Is Venice Still Sinking?

Sir Ashley Clarke

1976

The Italian Experience of Devolution

Ambassador Roberto Ducci

1974

Gli Antichi Banchieri di Firenze ed i loro Rapporti con la Gran Bretagna

Avv Lorenzo Corrini

1973

Ugo Foscolo in England and Italy

Professor E R Vincent

1969 (Oct)

The Past, Present and Future of the Italian Merchant Navy

Admiral Ernesto Giuriati

1969 (Mar)

The Economic Situation in Southern Italy

Avv Vittorio Veronese

1968 (Oct)

Antonio Panizzi

Dr E J Miller

1968 (Mar)

The Architecture of Our Time

Professor Pier Luigi Nervi

1967

Italian Foreign Policy: A Personal View

Ambassador Gastone Guidotti

1966 (Dec)

Verdi's "Simon Boccanegra"

Maestro Tito Gobbi

1966 (Jun)

Problems of Italy Today

Dr Guido Carli

1966 (May)

Rome and the Second Vatican Council

Archbishop Cardinale

1965 (Nov)

Post-War Cinema in Italy

Mario Soldati

1965 (May)

The Italian Liberal Party

On Giovanni Malagodi

1965 (Apr)

The Rebirth of Italian Fashion

Marchese Emilio Pucci

1965 (Apr)

The IRI: State and Industry in the Italian Economy

Professor Pasquale Saraceno

1964 (Nov)

The Position of Women in Italian Life Today

Signora Maria Luisa Astaldi

1964 (Jun)

Socialism and the Working Class

Senator Paolo Vittorelli

1964 (Mar)

The Role of Christian Democracy in Italy

On G Codacci Pisanelli

1964 (Feb)

The Opening to the Left

On Pierluigi Romita

1963 (Dec)

Italian Public Opinion

Dr Italo Zingarelli

1963 (Nov)

How Italian Democracy Works

Ambassador Pietro Quaroni