The historical Marguerite Porete, condemned as a heretic, was burned at the stake on 1 June 1310, in the Place de Grève in Paris. Guiard de Cressonessart, who claimed to be the Angel of Philadelphia and her ‘defender’, was sentenced at the same time to perpetual imprisonment. Despite its official suppression, Marguerite’s The Mirror of Simple Souls survived as an anonymous mystical text, and was translated during the fourteenth century into English, Italian and Latin versions. In 1946, over six centuries after Marguerite’s death, her authorship of the work was finally established by an Italian scholar, Romana Guarneri.

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