aphra behn

"Does not my fortune sit high upon my brow? Dost not see the little wanton god there all gay and smiling have I not an air about my face and eyes, that distinguish me from the crowd of common lovers?"
She was not thefirst woman writer; neither was she the only woman writer of her day. But Aphra Behn holds the singular distinction of being thefirst professional woman writer in the English language. She was thefirst woman writer who did it for money.
It was a natural choice for this young woman, a recent spy for the crown and a widow at the age of 26, to turn to selling herself (in a manner of speaking) in order to survive. Many other women of the period did so; but instead of novels and plays, they sold something much more fundamental and far more common. Single women, whether spinsters or widows, often allowed themselves to be kept by rich men of the commons and nobility alike. (Guffey, Wright 54) Mrs. Behn chose not to sell herself but her intelligence and work, and was berated as a whore for her efforts.
Most biographers seem to agree Ayfara, or Aphara (Aphra), Amis or Amies, the daughter of John and Amy Amis or Amies was baptized together with her brother Peter in the Parish Church of SS. Gregorty and Martin, Wye, July 10, 1640.(Guffey, Wright 12)Until this time Aphra's maiden name has been stated to be Johnson, and she is asserted to be the daughter of a barber, John Johnson.She acquired her education and her connections at court through a noble childhood friend for whom her mother acted as wet-nurse.She grew up during the Civil War and the interregnum and was approximately nineteen when Charles II was restored to the throne in 1660.
When she was about twenty years old the Amis family left England for Surinam; her father, who seems to have been a relative of Francis, Lord Willoughby of Parham, sometime administrator of several British colonies in the West Indies, having been promised a post o…

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