Elaine Hobby

In A Virtue of Necessity (1988), Hobby focuses on Ephelia's strong feminist voice and her uses of various traditions of love-poetry. She disagrees with "Ephelia" contrarians, such as Paddy Lyons (Glasgow University), whom she names, who judge "Ephelia" a clever hoax. Hobby concludes that most of the verse in Female Poems...by Ephelia (1679) was the work of one woman writer, working independently. Hobby is tentative, however, about Ephelia's authorship of the controversial "Lamentation" to Mulgrave and the concluding five lyrics in this interesting gathering of work.

Having failed herself in the 1980s to find a candidate for Ephelia's authorship, Hobby adamantly believes that all efforts to identify Ephelia emanate from arguments unprovable and unknowable.