Etching of Catherine of Aragon by Wenceslaus Hollar (Bohemian, 1607-1677)

Catherine of Aragon: Europe’s First Female Ambassador

Remembered as the wife Henry VIII brushed aside for Anne Boleyn, Catherine of Aragon was viewed as a strong leader and diplomat in her own lifetime.
Edgar Allan Poe with some seashell illustrations from The Conchologist’s First Book

Edgar Allan Poe (Sort of) Wrote a Book About Seashells

The American writer was an enthusiast of the sciences, which may explain his decision to “adapt” a text about seashells for publication under his own name.
From the cover of Henry and June by Anaïs Nin

June Miller: More Than An Erotic Muse?

Anaïs Nin and Henry Miller, two writers in search of sexual and literary inspiration, modeled their most seductive characters on June Mansfield Miller.
A painting of Queen Eleanor by Anthony Frederick Sandys

Eleanor of Aquitaine’s “Court of Love”

Allegedly, the noblewomen of Poitiers solved the problems of love, lost and found. But was the court real, or was it just the fanciful invention of historians?
The Devonshire Manuscript facsimile 6v

The Devonshire Manuscript

The sixteenth-century handwritten collection of poetry and commentary offers a glimpse of intellectual life at the court of King Henry VIII.
French lawyer and politician Simone Veil, the Minister of Health, addresses the French Senate in Paris, on the subject of abortion, 13th December 1974

The Manifesto of the 343

In a dramatic act of civil disobedience, more than three hundred French women publicly confessed to having had an illegal abortion.
At the Theatre, Prudence Heward, 1928

Who Belonged to the Beaver Hall Group?

An association of Montreal-based artists, the Beaver Hall Group embraced the free-spirited Jazz Age in their work, their habits, and their lifestyles.
Portrait of Edna St. Vincent Millay, c. 1914-1915

The Poetry Contest Edna St. Vincent Millay Lost

Though her writing career opened in an inauspicious manner, Edna St. Vincent Millay became the first woman to be awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry.
Lady Elizabeth Eastlake, c. 1843-47

The Contrary Journalist: Lady Elizabeth Rigby Eastlake

One of the sharpest female journalists of Britain’s Victorian era, Eastlake considered Jane Eyre an exercise in rudeness and vulgarity.
Portrait of Frances Theresa Stuart, Duchess of Richmond and Lennox by Peter Lely, 1662

The Woman Famous for Not Sleeping With a King

As a lady-in-waiting to the Queen of England, Frances Stuart was known as much for her ability to fend off the advances of King Charles II as for her beauty.