John Corwin Rule

RULE John Corwin Rule, professor of history emeritus at Ohio State University, died on January 12, 2013, at Westminster-Thurber Retirement Community in Columbus. He was born on March 2, 1929, in Warren, Indiana, to Corwin and Elaine Rule. He graduated from Broad Ripple High School in Indianapolis and from Stanford University, where he also took an M.A. in history. He then did a Ph.D. at Harvard University, graduating in 1958 after teaching for a year at Northeastern University. It was in 1958 that he joined the faculty at Ohio State, which he served until he retired as professor emeritus in 1995. For a generation, he was at the heart of cross-disciplinary socializing that made the University a vibrant academic community. He was also a legendary teacher, with a following among both undergraduate and graduate students. Nationally and internationally, he was one of the leading historians of seventeenth and eighteenth-century French history and served as associate editor of the journal, French Historical Studies. His research appeared in the form of many articles, a number of which were selected and reprinted elsewhere. Well known internationally, he also presented his findings in lectures in North America, Europe, and Australia. His scholarship was recognized by grants from the American Philosophical Society, the National Science Foundation, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Newberry Library, the Folger Library, and the Huntington Library. He also held visiting teaching appointments at Western Reserve University and Johns Hopkins University. In 1979, he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society (Great Britain). Beyond his national and international service, he served in many capacities at Ohio State, including as a member of the editorial board of the Ohio State University Press. Fortunately, his crowning scholarship and historical interpretation will be presented in his book to be published later this year by McGill-Queen's University Press, Bureaucracy under Louis XIV, co-authored with Ben Trotter. John Rule's passing will be mourned by colleagues and former students across the world, by friends at the University and in the Columbus community, and by cousins, Abigail Jones, of Savannah, Georgia, and Ginger (Royston) Gathings, of West Chester, Pennsylvania. Arrangements are being handled by the SCHOEDINGER STATE STREET CHAPEL, in Columbus, Ohio. At John's request, there will be no funeral service or calling hours, but a memorial service may be held at a later date. Memorial gifts may be sent to the Elaine S. and John C. Rule Study Abroad Fund for graduate student travel, c/o The Ohio State University Foundation, 1480 West Lane Avenue, Columbus, OH 43221. Please visit to share a memory of John.

Funeral Home

Schoedinger Funeral Home Midtown Chapel
229 East State Street Columbus, OH 43215
(614) 224-6105
Published in The Columbus Dispatch from Jan. 16 to Jan. 17, 2013