Associate Professor of History
Ph.D. Cambridge University Renaissance and Reformation
16th-, 17th-, and 18th-Century Europe
A 1974 graduate of Georgetown University with a B.A. in History summa cum laude, William J. Tighe was subsequently a graduate student at Yale University, where he studied under J. H. Hexter and from which he received the degrees of M.A. in 1975 and M. Phil. in 1977, and at Cambridge University under Sir Geoffrey Elton, Regius Professor of History, where he took the Ph.D. degree in 1984. After a period as University Research fellow in history at the University College of North Wales, he became a member of the Muhlenberg College History Department in 1986.
Although he has described himself betimes as an ecclesiastical historian manque, Tighe's field of research specialization is the political, religious and social history of Tudor and Stuart Britain (c. 1460 to c. 1715). His Ph.D. work focused on a corps of men known as the Gentlemen Pensioners at the court of Queen Elizabeth I and over the past decade he has embarked on a wide-ranging study of that group of the most initmate servants of that queen known collectively as the Privy Chamber. Among his publications are "A Nottinghamshire Gentleman in Court and in Country: the Career of Thomas Markham of Ollerton (1530-1607)", Transactions of the Thoroton Society of Nottinghamshire (1986); "The Gentlemen Pensioners, the Duke of Northumberland and the Attempted Coup of July 1553", Albion (1987); "Courtiers and Politics in Elizabethan Herefordshire: Sir James Croft, His Friends and His Foes", Historical Journal(1989); "'To Run with the Time': Archbishop Whitgift, the Lambeth Articles and the Politics of Theological Ambiguity in late Elizabeth England", Sixteenth Century Journal(1992); and "Country into Court, Court into Country: John Scudamore of Holme Lacy and his Circles" in Tudor Political Culture, ed. D. E. Hoak (Cambridge,1995). His teaching interests include the whole of British History, Europe in the Renaissance, the Reformation and the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries and a range of introductory courses, first-year seminars and other departmental offerings.