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Religions and Theology

Qumran caves and rock formations

Centre for Biblical Studies

The Centre for Biblical Studies within Religions and Theology at The University of Manchester is the principal home of all the University’s postgraduate and staff activity in Biblical Studies.

The CBS will be hosting a breakfast for prospective postgraduate students during the annual SBL meeting in Boston. Prospective students attending SBL in Boston who are interested in being supervised by a CBS staff member should contact Peter Oakes for more information. Spaces are limited.

With over 30 active researchers, The Centre for Biblical Studies is one of the world's most productive biblical research centres and is the principal home of all the University's postgraduate and staff activity in biblical studies.

The Centre carries forward the work which established a world-wide reputation for biblical studies at Manchester, notably through the work of the holders of the Rylands Chair of Biblical Criticism and Exegesis: A.S. Peake, C.H. Dodd, T.W. Manson, F.F. Bruce, Barnabas Lindars SSF, Christopher M. Tuckett, and George Brooke.

The Centre for Biblical Studies is central to the academic life of all biblical studies graduate students at Manchester. The CBS provides opportunities for professional growth through international trips, scholarships, weekly lectures, and academic support.

In the 2017 QS world university subject rankings, The University of Manchester ranked seventh in the world, second in the UK, and third in Europe for research citations in Theology, Divinity, and Religious Studies. The majority of the works leading to this high ranking were published by those affiliated with the Centre.

Research interests

Affiliates of the Centre for Biblical Studies have interests ranging from Ugaritic Literature through to early Rabbinic Judaism. Key to activity of the Centre is study of the literature and cultural contexts of the Hebrew Bible / Old Testament and New Testament. In addition, the Centre hosts several specialists in early Christian gnosticism and early Judaism, especially the Dead Sea Scrolls. For current research interest of those affiliated with the Centre for Biblical Studies, please click on this link.


The Centre provides facilities for postdoctoral fellows and visiting scholars who may wish to spend study leave working in the strongly research-oriented Department of Religions and Theology at Manchester. Recent visitors have included scholars holding awards from the British Academy, the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the Economic and Social Research Council, and the John Rylands Research Institute.