Chevalier d’Eon

I was looking at this picture of the diplomat Chevalier d’Eon – one of the older portraits of a cross-dresser. Originally thought to be that of a woman, a little conserving and cleaning of the picture revealed some obvious stubble on this woman’s face. Chevalier d’Eon was a fascinating man/woman. She lived openly as a woman in London society and was hailed as a feminist ideal by Mary Wollstonecraft. Chevalier d’Eon also famously gave fencing demonstrations while in skirts.

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