Albert Habib Hourani CBE was a Lebanese British historian, specialising in the history of the Middle East and Middle Eastern studies. Hourani was born in Manchester, England, the son of Soumaya Rassi and Fadlo Hourani, immigrants from Marjeyoun in what is now South Lebanon. He taught in 1938–39 at the American University of Beirut, the first time he had lived in an Arabic speaking country In World War II he worked at the Royal Institute of International Affairs (aka Chatham House) and in the office of the British Minister of State in Cairo. When in Cairo, Hourani rented a room in Paul Kraus's house; in 1944 Kraus was found hanged in his bathroom for an alleged suicide. After the war's end, he worked at the Arab Office in Jerusalem and London, where he helped prepare the Arab case for the Anglo-American Committee of Inquiry. He began his academic career, which would occupy the rest of his life, in 1948, teaching at Magdalen College, St. Antony's College (where he created and directed the college's Middle East Centre), the American University of Beirut, the University of Chicago, the University of Pennsylvania, and Harvard. He ended his academic career as Fellow of St. Antony's and Reader in the History of the Modern Middle East at Oxford. Hourani trained more academic historians of the modern Middle East than any other university historian of his generation. Today his students can be found on the faculties of LSE, Oxford, Cambridge, Harvard, Yale, University of Pennsylvania, Columbia, MIT and the University of Haifa, among others. He was appointed CBE in the 1980 Birthday Honours.