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Lady Mary Wortley Montagu was an 18th century English aristocrat and poet chiefly known today for the letters she wrote while living with her diplomat husband in Istanbul. Although frequently attacked during her life, her writings are now considered an extremely valuable historical resource, and the earliest secular work by a woman about the Muslim world. Her experiences in the Ottoman Empire gave her knowledge about a practice of inoculation against smallpox called variolation, which Lady Mary introduced to the West on her return. She also kept a diary (destroyed by her daughter) and wrote essays, a brief epistolary novel, and a play. Her first published writing appeared in 1714 in Addison's Spectator, under the pseudonym Lady President. Her Letters and Works were published in 1837 with an introduction by her granddaughter Lady Louisa Stuart.
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