The Soul as Virgin Wife presents the first book-length study to give a detailed account of the theological and mystical teachings written by women themselves, especially by those known as beguines, which have been especially neglected. Hollywood explicates the difference between the erotic and imagistic mysticism, arguing that Mechthild, Porete, and Eckhart challenge the sexual ideologies prevalent in their culture and claim a union without distinction between the soul and the divine. The beguines' emphasis in the later Middle Ages on spiritual poverty has long been recognized as an important influence on subsequent German and Flemish mystical writers, in particular the great German Dominican preacher and apophatic theologian Meister Eckhart. In The Soul as Virgin Wife, Amy Hollywood presents the first book-length study to give a detailed textual account of these debts. Through an analysis of Magdeburg's The Flowing Light of the Godhead, Marguerite Porete's Mirror of Simple Souls, and the Latin commentaries and vernacular sermons of Eckhart, Hollywood uncovers the intricate web of influence and divergence between the beguinal spiritualities and Eckhart.