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Donald Dickson

Areas of Speciality
  • Early Modern Studies
  • (979) 845-8340
  • LAAH 338
Professional Links

Research Interests

Dr. Dickson’s Scholars@TAMU Profile

  • Digital Humanities
  • Renaissance Hermeticism
  • Textual editing
  • The Devotional Poetry of the seventeenth-century
  • The History of Science in the seventeenth-century
  • Utopianism

Honors and Awards

  • Royal Historical Society, Fellow (Elected 2019)
  • Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, Research Fellow (2016)
  • American Council on Education, Fellow (2000)
  • Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, Research Fellow (1992-1993)
  • National Endowment for the Humanities, Fellow (1983)


The Works of Henry Vaughan, Volume 1 - DicksonThe Works of Henry Vaughan, Volume 2 - DicksonThe Works of Henry Vaughan, Volume 3 - Dickson








The Works of Henry Vaughan. Edited by Donald R. Dickson, Alan Rudrum and Robert Wilcher. 3 vols. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2018.

This is the first newly prepared, complete edition of Henry Vaughan’s poetry and prose for over a century. In the introduction, the reader will find an up-to-date biography of Vaughan, a substantial history of developments in Vaughan scholarship and criticism from the seventeenth to the twenty-first centuries, and full bibliographical descriptions of each of the volumes published in the author’s lifetime. The texts carefully reproduce original spelling and punctuation, with textual variants and significant editorial emendations made in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries noted at the foot of the page for easy reference. Vaughan’s volumes are printed in the order of their first publication and each is introduced by a brief essay on the date and circumstances of its publication, its historical and literary contexts, and the nature of its contents. Vaughan’s surviving letters are also included, and appendices print additional poems found in other volumes, poems of dubious ascription, and marginalia made in medical books owned by Vaughan.

Poetry of John Donne 2017 - DicksonDickson, Donald, textual editor.  The Variorum Edition of the Poetry of John Donne:  The SatyresIndiana University Press, 2017.

Based on an exhaustive study of the manuscripts and printed editions in which these poems have appeared, the fifth volume  in the series of The Variorum Edition of the Poetry of John Donne presents newly edited critical texts of the five canonical satires and “Metempsychosis” and details the genealogical history of each accompanied by a thorough prose discussion. The analysis contained in the volume shows that Donne revised each of the poems and explains how readings from the competing versions were intermingled in the early editions and transmitted to subsequent generations.
 Awarded the MLA Prize for a Scholarly Edition, 2018.


John Donne's Poetry - DicksonDickson, Donald, editor.  John Donne’s Poetry.  WW Norton and Company, 2007.

The texts reprinted in this new Norton Critical Edition have been scrupulously edited and are from the Westmoreland manuscript where possible, collated against the most important families of Donne manuscripts—the Cambridge Belam, the Dublin Trinity, and the O’Flahertie and compared with all seven seventeenth-century printed editions of the poems as well as all major twentieth-century editions.




Of Paradise and Light - DicksonDickson, Donald, editor. Of Paradise and Light.  University of Delaware Press, 2004.

This collection examines intertextual intersections in the works of Henry Vaughan and John Milton and considers their aesthetic, philosophical, or political implications. The theoretical pluralism of the volume reveals the variety and complexity of textual relations in the words of these early modern authors. Some of the essays focus on the author’s conscious creation of inter-text, others explore the reader’s negotiation of books within books, while still others examine the linguistic effect of textual intersections.



The Tessera of Antilia - DicksonDickson, Donald. The Tessera of Antilia.  Brill, 1998.

A study of the Protestant utopian movement that began in Germany, inspired in large measure by the writings of Johann Valentin Adreae, and came to England through the efforts of the émigré Samuel Hartlib.  The first chapters examine Andreae’s utopian writings, including the Rosicrucian manifestos, as part of his lifelong commitment to found a Societas Christiana, a spiritual élite that would improve religious and intellectual life. His writings sparked a transnational movement in early modern Europe. The most significant of the German learned societies are discussed.



Aqua Vitae - DicksonDickson, Donald, editor.  Thomas and Rebecca Vaughan’s Aqua Vitae: Non Vitis.  

Thomas and Rebecca Vaughan, Aqua Vitæ: Non Vitis: Or, The radical Humiditie of Nature: Mechanically, and Magically dissected By the Conduct of Fire, and Ferment (British Library MS, Sloane 1741).   Edited and translated with an Introduction by Donald R. Dickson. Medieval & Renaissance Texts & Studies, vol. 217. Tempe, AZ:  Arizona Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies, 2001.




Poetry of John Donne 1995 - DicksonDickson, Donald, editor.  The Variorum Edition of the Poetry of John Donne: The Anniversaries, Epicedes and Obsequies.  Indiana University Press, 1995

A major editorial and interpretive undertaking, this edition includes a newly edited critical text based on exhaustive study of all known manuscripts and significant printed editions of Donne’s poetry and a complete digest of critical and scholarly commentary on the poetry from Donne’s time to the present.




The Fountain of Living Waters - Dickson



Dickson, Donald.  The Fountain of Living Waters: The Typology of the Waters of Life in Herbert, Vaughan, and Traherne. University of Missouri Press, 1987