All About History

was aphra Behn really a spy?

- Diana Khan

Yes! Before Behn became the first profession­al female playwright in English literature, she was a secret agent. A fervent supporter of the newly restored Charles II, she undertook a mission to Antwerp in 1666, where she contacted a Cromwellia­n exile called William Scot. Behn offered him a pardon in exchange for informatio­n on alleged Dutch plans to invade England. Prior to that, she may have visited the English colony of Suriname in

South America to gather intelligen­ce for the crown but the evidence for this is less robust.

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