Lyons, Benjamin



Ph.D. – Columbia University, 2016
Ed.M. – Teachers College, 2002
M.A. – Columbia University, 2000
B.A. – Colby College, 1995


Interests and Research

Benjamin Lyons is an intellectual, legal, and diplomatic historian, interested in “the law of nations”—the early-modern term for international law—and its impact on early American diplomacy.  His research focuses on the role of law in John Jay’s negotiations with Spain during the War for Independence.  He is also interested in the intellectual influence of Samuel Johnson, president of King’s College in New York City (Jay’s alma mater), and a major figure in the American Enlightenment.  He is currently writing an article on how early American conceptions of the law of nations differed from the practice of European states.



  • John Jay and the American Revolution




  • Member, American Historical Association