Wolfson History Prize celebrates 50th anniversary with increased prize money and 2022 key dates

The Wolfson History Prize, the most prestigious history writing prize in the UK, has confirmed the dates for the 2022 Prize, with the shortlist of six historical non-fiction books set to be revealed on Thursday 21 April, and the winner announced on Wednesday 22 June.

To celebrate its 50th anniversary, the UK’s most valuable history writing prize will increase the prize money this year, with the winner of the 2022 Prize to take home £50,000 and each shortlisted author to receive £5,000.

First awarded in 1972, the Wolfson History Prize recognises outstanding works of historical non-fiction from the previous year, demonstrating the relevance of history and historical writing to society today. During that time, the Prize has awarded over £1.3 million to more than 120 historians, with winners including Mary Beard, Simon Schama, Eric Hobsbawm, Amanda Vickery, Antony Beevor, Christopher Bayly, and Antonia Fraser. With recent winning titles tackling subjects as varied as the history of the sea, the legacy of the Holocaust, and the leader of the Haitian Revolution, the Prize not only showcases the breadth of historical writing, it also demonstrates the impressive history work being produced in the UK today.

The winner of the Wolfson History Prize 2021 was Sudhir Hazareesingh for Black Spartacus: The Epic Life of Toussaint Louverture, selected from a shortlist of six titles including: Survivors: Children’s Lives after the Holocaust by Rebecca Clifford, Ravenna: Capital of Empire, Crucible of Europe by Judith Herrin, Double Lives: A History of Working Motherhood by Helen McCarthy, Burning the Books: A History of Knowledge Under Attack by Richard Ovenden and Atlantic Wars: From the Fifteenth Century to the Age of Revolution by Geoffrey Plank.

The Wolfson History Prize is run and awarded by the Wolfson Foundation, an independent charity that awards grants in the fields of science, health, heritage, humanities and the arts.

Full plans of the Wolfson History Prize’s 50th anniversary celebrations will be revealed in the coming weeks.