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Friday, 8 June 2012

Freaky Friday - L'inconnue de la Seine, The Unknown Woman of the Seine

Death Mask of the Unknown Woman

In the late 1880s the discovery of a body in the river Seine was not an uncommon thing, but what happened to the visage of one young woman was anything but common.

The unidentified body of a young woman, thought to be no older than 16 years was pulled from the waters of the Seine.  With no signs of violence on the body suicide was given as a possible cause of death.  Once at the Paris morgue a pathologist was so taken by her beauty and enigmatic smile that he ordered a molder to make a plaster cast death mask of her face.  Her identity was never discovered.  However she was not merely going to fade into obscurity. 

Copies where made of her original death mask and where soon to be found adorning the most fashionable homes in France.  Many likened her smile to that of the Mona Lisa and many more pondered what secrets lay behind her eerily happy expression.

Maybe she was simply at peace with her death.

1 comment:

  1. Sad but lovely story. Whoever she was its good that she was not forgotten. The mask truly is a thing of beauty as she must have been.


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