Erotic Tudor love poem discovered in West Virginia library

English gentlewomen of Tudor times, especially, married Catholic women to Protestant scholars, were not supposed to pen love poems to men, but this did not deter Lady Elizabeth Dacre, whose work was recently discovered in a 16th century copy of Chaucer.

The poem was found by Professor Elaine Treharne of Florida State University in the library of West Virginia University. Treharne translated the poem, which is in Latin, and found that it was a love poem written to Sir Anthony Cooke, a tutor to King Edward VI. While the beginning of the poem speaks of a sweet parting, the end has a more erotic turn. "It's a very beautiful piece and I think for her it was quite a prized possession, because it's been so very carefully copied out and looked after," said Treharne.