Lady Margaret Hoby

(2472 words)
  • Julie Crawford (Columbia University )

Margaret Hoby (c.1571-1633) is best known for the diary she kept between August 9, 1599 and July 21, 1605, a period covering, among other things, the 1601 Essex rebellion, the death of Elizabeth I, and the accession of James I. The diary comprises 59 folios (118 pages) and is written in her own hand – a hand, as the diary’s editor points out, “well accustomed to the use of the pen” (Meads, x). Until recently, Hoby’s diary has been seen as the life record of a “very private Elizabethan lady", a private document “kept largely as a means of assisting in the religious exercise of self-examination", or as part of the “self-imposed career” of a “Puritan saint” (Meads, 47; Moody, xv; Mendelson, 189; Willen, 563). It has …

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Crawford, Julie. "Lady Margaret Hoby". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 13 February 2014
[, accessed 27 September 2016.]