Anonymous: The Assembly of Ladies

(2800 words)
  • Simone Celine Marshall

The Assembly of Ladies is an anonymous Middle English poem that is largely derivative in content and form, combining courtly love themes and the debate genre popular in English secular poetry of the late medieval period. The poem is likely to have been composed in the early part of the fifteenth century, judging by the influence on its author of the works of Chaucer, Lydgate, and the English poems of Charles d’Orleans (Boffey, 2003, 158-94). The earliest surviving witnesses of the poem are three manuscripts, London, British Library, Additional MS 34360, Warminster, Longleat House, MS 258, and Cambridge, Trinity College, MS R.3.19, dating from around the third quarter of the fifteenth century, but none of these appear to be i…

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Marshall, Simone Celine. "The Assembly of Ladies". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 08 December 2010
[, accessed 01 July 2015.]