Mary Ward entry: Overview screen.
Writing and Life
Works By
Mary Ward, seventeenth-century religious reformer and founder of a religious Order, used her writings (letters, autobiography, prayers, notes, and speeches) as a means to forward her radical ecclesiastical administration. She also wrote devotional works for her own spiritual life, and familiar letters.
23 January 1585 Joan Ward, later MW, was born at Mulwith Manor, Mulwith in Yorkshire (near the moors), the eldest of six children. Bibliographic Citation link.
23 January 1617 At Liège on her twenty-second birthday, MW began an autobiography on the model of St Augustine's Confessions, which takes her life to the age of fifteen only. Bibliographic Citation link.
Later 1617 Faced with evidence of scepticism about her projects among the top Catholic hierarchy, MW made at St Omer "Three Speeches" about her mission. Bibliographic Citation link.
About 1627 MW wrote—or perhaps dictated—a second autobiography, in Italian, which begins with her aged fifteen. Bibliographic Citation link.
20 January 1645 MW, whose health had been failing for some time, died in a 'safe home' outside the recently besieged city of York. Bibliographic Citation link.  scholarly note link.
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