Dr Bettany Hughes

Dr Bettany Hughes

Dr Bettany Hughes has devoted her time to ancient history and culture. An award-winning historian, she has written and presented several historical and philosophical television and radio documentaries for the BBC, Channel 4, Discovery, PBS, The History Channel, National Geographic, Discovery, BBC World and ITV.

These include two superb programme on Greek history ‘A Greek Island Odessey’ and Roman History ‘Secrets of Pompeii’s Greatest Treasures’

Some of her presenting credits include; The Ideas That Make Us (BBC, 2016) Pompeii Live and Vikings Live – educational pieces for the British Museum, Genius of the Ancient World (Buddha, Socrates, Confucius) (BBC4, 2015) and Genius of the Modern World (Marx, Nietzsche, Freud) (BBC4,2016).

As an author, Dr Bettany’s first book Helen of Troy: Goddess, Princess, Whore has been translated into ten languages. Her second publication, The Hemlock Cup, Socrates, Athens and the Search for the Good Life was a New York Times bestseller and was shortlisted for the Writer’s Guild Award.

Contact Great British Speakers today to book history presenter & speaker Dr Bettany Hughes for your next event.

Type Of Speaker


It’s not often that a speaker on Socrates holds her own with consumer gurus and political pundits. But in the lecture series in which she spoke at Cornell this year, Bettany Hughes proved every bit as popular as those who spoke on more contemporary subjects. Hughes’ talk was enthralling, professional, and deeply humanistic. Not only did she hold a crowd of 150 students spellbound, but — in the highest compliment of all — they stayed for the question period afterwards. Students vote with their feet! And, from what they told me afterwards, they felt like stomping out their approval.

Cornell University

Bettany was both erudite and witty, effortlessly creating vivid parallels between the ancient world of Sparta and the modern-day cut and thrust of commercial enterprise.”

Alex Kanellis – Chief Executive PZ Cussons

Bettany Hughes was a charismatic and hugely entertaining speaker. A blend of serious scholarship and fun anecdotes, her talk was perfect.”


I was delighted that Bettany Hughes accepted to take part in a panel discussion on the public intellectual, in ancient Athens and today, hosted by the Royal Society under the aegis of the Institute of Advanced Study, Durham University. She thrilled the audience and panellists alike. I particularly valued her views on how anxious, litigious and frightened the ancient Athenians often were, even while they affirmed the value of rational debate and public scrutiny.

Prof. Graziosi, Institute of Advanced Study

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