G.O. Sayles

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George Osborne Sayles (April 21, 1901 – February 28, 1994), better known as G. O. Sayles, was an English historian best known for his work on the medieval English law courts and the early English Parliaments.

Early life[edit]

He attended Ilkeston Grammar School. He studied at the University of Glasgow and then University College London.


During his lifetime he held the following positions: Assistant in History, Glasgow University 1924-25, Lecturer 1925-34, Senior Lecturer 1934-45; Professor of Modern History, Queen's University Belfast 1945-53; Burnett-Fletcher Professor of History, University of Aberdeen 1953-62; Vice-President, Selden Society 1954-86; FBA 1962; Kenan Professor of History, New York University 1967-68.

His most important works were The King's Parliament of England and his work on the translation of the Fleta.

His long time writing partner was Henry Gerald Richardson.

Personal life[edit]

In 1936 he married Agnes Sutherland, from Glasgow. They had a son (Michael) and daughter (Hilary).

Partial bibliography[edit]

  • The Medieval Foundations of England (Second edition 1950)
  • The King's Parliament of England (1974)
  • The functions of the medieval parliament of England (1987)

in collaboration with H.G. Richardson

  • The Irish Parliament in the Middle Ages (1952)
  • Fleta translation (1954–84)
  • The Administration of Ireland, 1172-1377 (1963)
  • The English parliament in the Middle Ages (1981)


External links[edit]