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a famous female enthusiast, was born Jan. 13, 1616, at Lisle in

, a famous female enthusiast, was born Jan. 13, 1616, at Lisle in Flanders. She came into the world so very deformed, that a consultation was held in the family some days about stifling her as a monstrous birth. But if she sunk almost beneath humanity in her exterior, her interior seems to have been raised as much above it. For, at four years of age, she not only took notice that the people of Lisle did not live up to the principles of Christianity which they professed, but earnestly desired to be removed into some more Christian country; and her progress was suitable to this beginning. Her parents lived unhappily together, Mr. Bourignon using his spouse with too much severity, especially in his passion: upon which occasions, Antoinette endeavoured to soften him by her infant embraces, which had some little effect; but 'the mother’s unhappiness gave the daughter an utter aversion to matrimony. This falling upon a temper strongly tinctured with enthusiasm, she grew a perfect devotee to virginity, and became so immaculately chaste, that, if her own word may be taken, she never had, in all her life, not even by temptation or surprise, the least thought unworthy of the purity of the virgin state: nay, she possessed the gift of chastity in so abundant a manner, that her presence and her conversation shed an ardour of continence over all who knew her.