Mademoiselle de Maupin was like a character from a Dumas novel, but she was a) a real person and b) female. She was the very image of a swashbuckling cavalier, down to the swordfighting expertise and the romance. (She romanced both men and women, and usually won her duels). La Maupin was also an accomplished opera singer. She was born Julie d'Aubigny in 1670; she died in 1707. Undeservedly forgotten fascinating person; there should be a Rose of Versailles-like shoujo manga written about her at the very least. Definitely one of history's uppity women.

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