Madame Talbot's Private Collection

Madame Talbot's Personal Private Collection
Oddities and Curiosities Wanted
Madame Talbot's Poster Prints
Madame Talbot's Oddments
Victorian Lowbrow Mourning Dolls
Madame Talbot's Victorian and Gothic Lowbrow Website
Madame Talbot's Instagram
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L'Inconnue de la Seine Death Mask

French for "the unknown woman of the Seine".

The original owner purchased this in France in 1925 as a souvenir which would make this mask a fairly early reproduction. There is a short description the original owner wrote which adds to the provenance of this piece.

According to an often-repeated story, the body of a young woman was pulled from the Seine River at the Quai du Louvre in Paris around the late 1880s.

The body showing no signs of violence, suicide was suspected. A pathologist at the Paris morgue was so taken by her beauty, he had a molder make a death mask of her face.

Numerous copies were produced and became a fashionable morbid fixture in Parisian Bohemian society. This is the "Parlor Version".

Albert Camus and others compared her enigmatic smile to that of the Mona Lisa, inviting numerous speculations as to what clues the eerily happy expression in her face could offer about her life, her death, and her place in society.


L'Inconnue de la Seine Death Mask L'Inconnue de la Seine Death Mask
L'Inconnue de la Seine Death Mask L'Inconnue de la Seine Death Mask