Cope 1992

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Cope, Esther S. Handmaid of the Holy Spirit: Dame Eleanor Davies, Never Soe Mad a Ladie. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1992.
"A prophet ordinarily gave up her or his own identity to be a vessel for another, greater power; Lady Eleanor did not." (2); "she never attracted followers" (3)
"Rather than providing a clear narrative of her life, Lady Eleanor's tracts created a multidimensional world of truth and time that seemed to defy my efforts to impose an analytical framework upon it." (5)

The Lady Eleanor

"For the innumerable biblical citations that she only sometimes identified by book, chapter, and verse, she relied heavily upon the preference of puritans, the Geneva Bible and its commentary as well as the Authorized Version of 1611." (13)
"Although her rigorous defiance of episcopal authority and her familiarity with the Bible make it tempting to call her a puritan during the 1630s and a sectarian in the following decade, she was generally orthodox in doctrine. Her rhetoric has more in common with that of Lancelot Andrewes than that of John Cotton and, like Andrewes, she focused upon the feasts of the liturgical calendar. She did not conform to or fit within the patterns fo community that emphasized the godly household and the congregation. She could accept neither the notion of a gathered church nor radical redefinitions of the sacraments. If she indulged in the kind of spiritual self-examination, fasting, or devotional practices that we have come to associate with puritans and sectarians, or if she enjoyed a close relationship with one or more members of the clergy, she does not say so. Although she denoucned abuse of the sabbath, drinking, gaming, and idolatry, she had little to say about sermons. The form and language of her tracts owed more to the prophetic models in the Bible and the liturgy than it did to sermons, though she was certainly exhorting and instructing her readers." (13)

after her father died, she fought "to acquire some of her family's furniture, tapestries, and linens"

George Carr, acted for Eleanor as Daniel acted for Nebuchadnezzar (30)

Singing a New Song

"Lady Eleanor compounded the offense she caused by her scholarship an by her prophecies by criticizing, as no subject should, the actions of king, bishops, Parliament, and local officials. She also prophesied in defiance of her husband. By doing so and by publishing her pronouncements on matters of religion and government, she challenged early Stuart patriarchy both within her own family and within the kingdom." (34)
"Women who were prophets could venture into such realms as preaching, writing, and discussing public affairs that otherwise belonged exclusively to men. Proof of the authenticity of their inspiration was essential. The very characteristics that made women susceptible to powers beyond themselves also made them likely targets for evil." (38)

later tracts, describes herself as "secretary," and shows an image of her hand holding a pen o nthe tile page of 1648 Given to the Elector (39)

immediately after ED heard Daniel's voice, "she set to work to prepare a text that she personally delivered, a few days late, to Archbishop Abbot of Canterbury at Oxford where hew as attending Parliament." (40) -- probably Warning to the Dragon

Charles Stuart, AL TRUTHS CESAR, anagram; "By showing him truth he could not deny, truth concealed within those letters that spelled his identity, she performed her prophetic function and demonstrated the limits of his authority." (41)

"Using an anagram of his name, JOHN DAVES, JOVES HAND, she told Davies that he himself would die within three years and began wearing mourning." (42)

Eleanor and Henrietta Maria's relationship (50)

"I will utter my grave matter upon the harp"

"While frustration at her inability to attain a comparable position may have encouraged Lady Eleanor's prophesying, a lingering hope of success may have led her to seek Elizabeth's favor during her time in the Low Countries. To reinforce her plea and to explain her cause, Lady Eleanor most likely gave the queen a copy of All the Kings of the Earth. Throughout her career as a prophet, Lady Eleanor personally presented her writings to individuals for whom they were intended. The date printed on the tract is 13 September, 9 days prior to the date of the letter Elizabeth wrote in Lady Eleanor's behalf to King Charles." (61)
"The loss of her books, her prophetic creations, compounded the injury Lady Eleanor had earlier suffered by the deaths of her sons. In denying her the role of prophet, the patriarchal regime destroyed a far greater maternal creation than that which she had borne in temporal motherhood. She was Mary: in writing, she was producing the children who would inaugurate the Second Coming. Their crucifixion, like Christ's confirmed their mission." (68)

courts: "The dilemma she presented them was not simply one of determining an appropriate sentence; they saw her as a violator of gender order." (73)

Prophet or "Mad Ladie"?

The Bride's Preparation

"Although scholars have argued that ties between mothers and daughters tended to be close in this period, the bond between Lady Eleanor and Lucy seems to be especially affectionate and the tract dedicated to Lucy an adaptation of the well-known genre of paternal addresses to sons." (112)

A and O, the Beginning and the Ending

The Lamb's Wife

"Evidence among the Hastings manuscripts ties Lucy both indirectly and directly with the tribute to her mother in the fifth (1670) edition of Baker's Chronicle of the Kings of England. The third (1660) and fourth (1665) editions of the Chronicle had mentioned 'the Lady Davies' briefly in the account of 1628." (163)


"Lady Eleanor claimed power for herself and for her sex when she took up prophecy in 1625. She justified her rebellion against the established order in family and society on the very grounds that were the foundaton for that order -- religion." (165)