Lady Mary Wroth entry: Overview screen.
Writing and Life
Works By
Lady Mary Wroth achieved two firsts with a single publication in 1621: the first full-length fiction (a prose romance) to be written in English by a woman and the first sonnet sequence in English by a woman (discounting the less than certain ascription of a sonnet sequence based on Psalm 51 to Anne Locke). Outside this landmark publication, she is known to have written other poems, a play, and surviving letters.
18 October 1587 Mary Sidney (later LMW) was born, most probably at Baynards Castle, the London base of her family. Bibliographic Citation link.
Around 1610-1620 LMW wrote her major work, Urania, a prose romance with poems and sonnets, some interspersed but most printed in a block at the end. Bibliographic Citation link.
1613 A complimentary remark of Joshua Sylvester about LMW implies that she was circulating her writings in manuscript by this date. Bibliographic Citation link.
13 July 1621 LMW's pastoral prose romance, The Countesse of Montgomeries Urania, was licensed for printing; it appeared that year. Bibliographic Citation link.
15 December 1621 LMW wrote to assure Buckingham, the king's favourite, that she meant no offence to the court by her book, yet offering to withdraw it. Bibliographic Citation link.
31 May 1640 The Earl of Rutland, reading Urania, wrote to ask LMW for a key to names of the characters, to increase his enjoyment. Bibliographic Citation link.
1651 or 1653 LMW died in one of these two years. Bibliographic Citation link.
1815 Sir Egerton Brydges reprinted extracts from LMW's Urania. Bibliographic Citation link.
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