La Maupin once scandalized a ball by kissing another woman on the dance floor. She was challenged to a duel by three men, beat them all, and promptly returned to dancing. Jim Burrows is writing a novel about her, and has this account of her life:
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La Maupin, 17th century French swordswoman, adventuress and opera star, was like something out of a novel by Dumas or Sabatini, except for two things.
First she was real, and second few authors would have attributed her exploits to a woman.
Theophile Gautier borrowed her name and a few of her characteristics for the heroine of his novel Mademoiselle De Maupin, but in many ways his character was only a pale imitation of the original. The real Maupin was a complex creature.
Well born and privileged, she knew how to use her influential friends and contacts to get what she wanted or to escape danger, but she was also proud and self-reliant.