Tag Archives: Charles Duke of Mayenne

TODAY’S BIRTHDAY: CHEVALIER D’ÉON (1728)


Chevalier d’Éon (1728)

The inspiration for the now-obsolete term “eonism,” describing the adoption of female dress and behavior by a male, the Chevalier d’Éon was a French noble, soldier, and spy who lived first as a male and then as a female. His cross-dressing appears to have begun as part of his covert activities, but by the 1770s, rumors reached France that the Chevalier was actually a woman masquerading as a man, and he was ordered to live as a woman thereafter. When was it proven that he was anatomically male? More… Discuss