Elizabeth Cary (1585-1639) was an English poet, translator and dramatist. She is best known today for The Tragedy of Mariam (1613), the first original play in English known to have been written by a woman. Over her lifetime, she married Sir Henry Cary, and had eleven children by him. Disinherited by her father for using her own income to defray household expenses, she was later abandoned by her husband when she converted to Catholicism. She would spend much of the rest of her life battling for custody of her sons and daughters.