MANNOURY D’ECTOT, marquise de. ~ Mémoires secrets d’un tailleur pour dames par une femme masquée. Édition illustré d’un frontispice á l’eau-forte et de vingt sept figures á mi-pages. Brussels: Gay et Doucé, 1880.
8vo (190 × 120 mm), pp. , 159, , plus etched frontispiece by J. Chauvet. 27 wood engraved vignettes in the text. Plus 4pp. ‘Clef’, separately issued (copy 10 of 75 printed for private circulation) loosely inserted at rear. Slightly later half morocco, gilt. An excellent copy.
First edition, one of 10 copies on chine (of an edition of 100, the other copies on hollande). A rare erotic curiosity: a collection of racy stories about her contemporaries at the Imperial court of Napoleon III by the marquise de Mannoury d’Ectot. The cast of characters (provided by the invaluable and rarely-found ‘clef’ loosely inserted here) include couturier Charles Frederick Worth, the Emperor and Emperess themselves and a fascinating gathering of society women. The marquise is an interesting figure, being the author of several clandestine erotic novels (she is often considered the first female author of such works). She held a salon at her chateau in Normandy, where Paul Verlaine, Charles Cros and Guy de Maupassant were among her regular guests.