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Born in Bayonne, this actress and theater director never failed to come out on top.*
* That's what she said.
Sorry. I've never quite got the hang of that.
After starting out in an acting troupe, she worked her way into high society to become the director of a theater in Versailles. With the Revolution, she set herself up in Paris which, at the time, was home to 237 theatres that continued to thrive even during the Terror. Known as the "Ribaude du Palais-Royal" (the Trollop of the Palais-Royal), she set up two theatres that played to full houses. Her financial success inevitably aroused envy, and she was later accused of espionage and receiving funds from the English. Imprisoned on November 14, 1783, she was declared innocent and released after serving ten months. Following the death of Robespierre, who hated this kind of woman, she resumed her career and conquered the hearts of her many admirers once more. She was 90 when the final curtain fell.