Richard Methley (ca. 1450–1527/8), a Carthusian of Mount Grace, was the last great mystic before the English Reformation. Most of his prolific works are lost, but the treatises translated here display the same kind of experiential, affective, and ecstatic mysticism that is often labeled "feminine." Dating from the 1480s, they include a guide to contemplative prayer, a spiritual diary, and an unknown work on the discernment of spirits. Indebted to Richard Rolle and compared by one of his contemporaries to Margery Kempe, Methley will be an exciting discovery for students of late medieval religion.
Barbara Newman, professor of English and classics at Northwestern University, is a medievalist specializing in religious culture and writings by, for, and about medieval women. She has translated many Latin texts, including Hildegard of Bingen's Symphonia, the collected saints' Lives of Thomas of Cantimpré, The Life of Juliana of Cornillon, the Epistolae duorum amantium (probably by Abelard and Heloise), and Mechthild of Hackeborn's Liber specialis gratiae, as well as Frauenlob's Marienleich from the Middle High German.
Laura Saetveit Miles is associate professor of British literature and culture in the Department of Foreign Languages, University of Bergen, Norway. She has published on the Virgin Mary in medieval religious culture, including her monograph The Virgin Mary's Book at the Annunciation: Reading, Interpretation, and Devotion in Medieval England (D.S. Brewer, 2020). Other research interests include medieval women's writing, anchoritic texts, visionary and contemplative genres, and monastic literary traditions, specifically the Carthusian and Birgittine Orders. Currently she is working on a large project exploring Birgitta of Sweden's influence in late medieval England, funded by the Norwegian Research Council.