The She-Apostle: The Extraordinary Life and Death of Luisa de Carvajal

Hardcover | November 1, 2008

byGlyn Redworth

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Before dawn one morning in June 1612, an elderly Frenchman took charge of a carriage carrying a precious cargo near Tyburn Fields, London's notorious place of execution. It was heading for a house in Spitalfields, where a wizened Spanish woman was waiting to receive the mortal remains offreshly-martyred Catholic priests. Her name was Luisa de Carvajal and this book tells her story. Born into a great Spanish noble family, Luisa suffered a horribly abusive childhood and from her early years hankered to become a martyr for her faith. For almost 20 years she struggled to become possibly the first female missionary of modern times. In 1605 - the year of the Gunpowder Plot - she was secreted into England by the Jesuits, despite the fact that she spoke not a word of English. To everyone's surprise including her own, she steadily assumed a prominent role within London's underground Catholic community, setting up an unofficialnunnery, offering Roman priests a secure place to live, consoling prisoners awaiting execution, importing banned books, and helping persecuted Catholics to flee abroad. Throughout this time she ran the grave risk of imprisonment and execution, yet she miraculously managed to avoid this ultimate fatein spite of being arrested on a number of occasions. This vividly written biography, the first to give equal treatment to her double life in Spain and England, is based on Luisa's own autobiographical writings, her sparkling collection of poems and letters, and the detailed reminiscences by dozens of people who worked with her. In parts humorous, thebook contains Luisa's biting descriptions of the cost of living in Shakespeare's London, the poor quality of food in the capital, as well as the weekend rowdiness of the English.

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Before dawn one morning in June 1612, an elderly Frenchman took charge of a carriage carrying a precious cargo near Tyburn Fields, London's notorious place of execution. It was heading for a house in Spitalfields, where a wizened Spanish woman was waiting to receive the mortal remains offreshly-martyred Catholic priests. Her name was ...

Glyn Redworth taught at Oxford University for several years and was a research fellow at Christ Church before moving to the University of Manchester. Closely associated with the Institute of History in Madrid, he has spent several years in Spain researching Luisa's life. He has published widely on sixteenth and early seventeenth centu...

other books by Glyn Redworth

The Letters Of Luisa De Carvajal Y Mendoza Vol 1
The Letters Of Luisa De Carvajal Y Mendoza Vol 1

Hardcover|Sep 1 2012

$262.07 online$315.00list price
Format:HardcoverDimensions:288 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.85 inPublished:November 1, 2008Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199533539

ISBN - 13:9780199533534

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Table of Contents

Part I: Spain1. The Last House in London2. Carvajal and Mendoza3. Blessed Discipline4. Toledo Street5. Sweet Manacles6. New Ways of Living7. Generation of Vipers8. The She-Apostle9. Most Extraordinary JourneyPart II: England10. Treason and Plot11. Carrots, Capons, and Plague12. Grand India13. Sovereign Virgin14. Broken English15. Fashionable and Modest16. Pears and the Last Supper17. Oran18. The Siege of Spitalfields

Editorial Reviews

`An artfully reconstructed life of an astonishing noble woman from her abused childhood in Spain to aspirant Jesuitess and foiled martyr in Jacobean London. 'Dame Olwen Hufton