Lot 464: French military engineer and writer (1714–1800) known for his work on fortifications. Two third-person ALSs in French to the Chevalier d'Eon. First is addressed to "Monsieur le Chev. d'Eon," one page, 4.25 x 6.75, July 19, . In part (translated): "M. de Montalembert has been in London for a few days and is preparing to take the waters in Bath that have been prescribed for his health. He would be very pleased to see Mr. le Chevalier d'Eon and renew their acquaintanceship from St. Petersburg, which dates from many years past, as he will see at first sight. But he is sufficiently well despite his age and the great illness which he has just contracted." Second is addressed to "Mademoiselle la Chevalier D'Eon," one page, 7.25 x 9, July 22, 1792. In part (translated): "The Marquis de Montalembert prays Mademoiselle la Chev. d'Eon to do him the honor of coming to dine with him tomorrow, Monday, or any other day that will suit her; that's the best way to renew such an old acquaintance. He sends her many compliments." Intersecting folds, scattered soiling, and various notations, otherwise overall fine condition. d'Eon (1728–1810) was a French soldier and one of King Louis XV's personal spies. Beginning in 1777, d'Eon claimed to be anatomically a woman (a fact refuted during autopsy) and is considered to be one of the earliest openly transvestite or transgender people—this pairing of letters is especially interesting because one addresses d'Eon as a man and the other as a woman.
RR Auction's Fine Autographs and Artifacts Auction 456
Wednesday, 15th July 2015
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