Margery Kempe entry: Overview screen.
Writing and Life
Works By
Margery Kempe, called the first English autobiographer, wrote (in the earlier fifteenth century) an account of her life-experience as immensely significant to God and to herself. In a sense, though her subject is herself, she may be seen as writing hagiography. She was more concerned to record her religious experiences than her external adventures on pilgrimage.
About 1373 Margery Brunham (later MK) was born in Lynn in Norfolk (later called King's Lynn). Bibliographic Citation link.
1431-2 At about this date MK began dictating the story of her life. Bibliographic Citation link.
28 April 1438 At the suggestion of her priest-scribe, it seems that MK began adding a shorter second part to her book, telling what had happened in the interim. Bibliographic Citation link.  scholarly note link.
Some time after April 1438 MK died at an unknown date; she seems to have been alive during this month. Bibliographic Citation link.  scholarly note link.
1501 The early printer Wynkyn de Worde printed seven pages from MK's text as A Shorte Treatyse of Contemplacyon Taught by Our Lorde Ihesu Cryste. Bibliographic Citation link.
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