In September 1833, Gautier was solicited to write a historical romance based on the life of French opera star Mlle Maupin, who was a first-rate swordswoman and often went about disguised as a man. Originally, the story was to be about the historical la Maupin, who set fire to a convent for the love of another woman, but later retired to a convent herself, shortly before dying in her thirties. Gautier instead turned the plot into a love triangle between a man, d'Albert, and his mistress, Rosette, who both fall in love with Madelaine de Maupin, who is disguised as a man named Théodore. (--from Wikipedia)
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