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OR,
MEMOIRS

of

ILLUSTRIOUS AND CELEBRATED

WOMEN,

OF ALL AGES AND COUNTRIES.

Alphabetically arranged.

BY MARY. HAYS.

IN SIX VOLUMES.

VOL. II.

LONDON:
PRINTED FOR RICHARD PHILLIPS, 71, ST. PAUL'S

CHURCH - YARD.

By Thomas Davison, White-Triars.

1803.

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OF

DISTINGUISHED WOMEN.

ELIZABETH BLAND.. : ELIZABETH BLAND, remarkable for her knowledge of the Hebrew language, and her skill in Hebrew composition, deserves a place among women distinguished for their learning. .'

Elizabeth, the daughter of Robert Fisher of Longdore, was born about the period of the Restoration, in the parish of St. Martin's-in-theFields, Middlesex. In April, 1681, she married Mr. Nathaniel Bland, a linen-draper, in London, and afterwards, by his paternal inheritance, lord of the manor of Beeston, in the parish of Leeds, in the county of York, where he resided with his wife many years. Mrs. Bland bore six children, two of whom only, a son and a daughter, survived their

VOL. II.

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mother. Her daughter, Martha Bland, married Mr. George More, of Beeston.

Mrs. Bland studied the Hebrew language under the direction, and with the assistance, of lord Van Helmont, and became afterwards the instructress of her children. Among the curiosities of the Royal Society is preserved a phylactery * in Hebrew, written by this lady, of which Dr. Grew, in his account of rarities preserved at Gresham college (folio, London, 1681), has given the following description : “ It is a single scroll of parchment, fifteen inches long, three quarters of an inch in breadth, with four sentences of the Law most curiously written upon it in Hebrew; viz. Exod. xiii. from verse 7 to 11, and from 13 to 17. Deut. vi. from verse 3 to 10, and xi. from 13 to 19. Serarius, from the rabbies, saith, that that they were written severally upon so many scrolls, and that the Jews do to this day wear them over their foreheads in their manner. So that they are of several sorts or modes, whereof this is one."| Mrs. Bland having written the phylac

* Their original use, as mementos, founded on Deut. Ixviii.-* And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes." They were afterwards worn ostentatiously, or as spells and amuletgo sto fondos in

tery described by Dr. Grew, at the request of Mr. Thoresby, presented it to the Royal So, ciety.

It appears by two pedigrees of the family, printed in Mr. Thoresby's “ Ducatus Leodiensis," p. 209 and 587, that Mrs. Bland was living in 1712. Of her writings, which are believed to have been considerable, no account has been procured.

Ballard's Lives of British Ladies Biographium.
Famineum.

BOADICEA.

AMONG women illustrious for courage and fortitude, the British Boadicea holds a distinguished place : the widow of Prasutagus, king of the Iceni, she found herself, by the imprudent testament of her husband, involved in the most cruel calamities. Prasutagus, with a view of procuring for his family the protection of the Romans, left the emperor co-heir, with his daughters, to his immense treasures. The Roman officers, whose extortions, it was not easy to satisfy, availing themselves of a privilege so replete with mischief, practised on the unhappy queen and her family,

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