Portrait of the Day: Chevalier d'Eon
Past event archive
30 October 2019, 12:30
- Talks and Lectures
by Thomas Stewart, after Jean Laurent Mosnier
The Chevalier d'Eon was a French soldier, diplomat, spy and fencing demonstrator who lived as a woman from 1777. D'Eon first came to London in 1763 to negotiate the end of the Seven Years War. Rumours that d'Eon was a woman in disguise were encouraged by d'Eon and widely accepted. D'Eon used secret letters to blackmail the French king, Louis XVI, and was paid an income from 1777 on the condition that d'Eon wore women's clothes. From 1785, d'Eon achieved fame in Britain as a celebrity female fencer.
Portrait of the Day talks are given by members of the Gallery's Visitor Services Team and last for up to 30 minutes. Talks are subject to change so please call 0207 306 0055 on the day or check signage in the Gallery.