This chapter introduces edited extracts from Eliza's Babes: Or the Virgins-Offering (1652), a collection of poems and prose meditations, whose author can be recognised only by the name ‘Eliza’. Eliza's work expands the metaphor that the writing process mirrors the process of giving birth, exploring images of the mystical marriage, conception, labour, and birth in order to explain her authorship of devotional verse. Her work was clearly influenced by other writers of devotional verse, but particularly George Herbert
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