Gavin Lewis, a retired associate professor of history at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice at CUNY, died peacefully in Princeton Jan. 20, 2019. He was 75.
Born in England in 1943 to a concert-pianist mother and architect father, Lewis earned a bachelor’s degree in history from Oxford University. In 1969 and 1972, respectively, he earned a master’s degree and Ph.D. in history from Princeton.
For more than 30 years Lewis taught Western civilization to the undergraduates at John Jay College. He co-authored A Brief History of the Western World, a widely used undergraduate textbook. Among the other books he wrote are Church and Party in Political Catholicism, Tomás Masaryk, and Close-Ups of the Past: Western Civilization Case Studies.
His research and publications also included studies of Sumerian civilization, Athenian politics and religion, print and culture in the Renaissance, and the decipherment of Egyptian writing. He also was a book editor of many scholarly works for major university presses.
Lewis is survived by his wife of 40 years, Nadia; their four children; and five grandchildren. A longtime resident of Princeton, he was buried in Princeton Cemetery.
Graduate memorials are prepared by the APGA.