The Library of Nineteenth-Century Photography

 
 
 
Menken and Dumas

Adah Isaacs Menken and Alexandre Dumas père


A famous but seldom seen portrait of the notorious actress Adah Isaacs Menken in intimate pose with the famous author Alexander Dumas, père, who was more than thirty years her senior. There is no proof that the two were ever lovers, but Dumas was certainly fascinated by the actress, as were Charles Dickens in London and Mark Twain in New York. The two were photographed together in a number of affectionate poses, all of which would have been considered risqué, to say the least, by the standards of the time.

Menken was of the most scandalous actresses of her day. She created a sensation in the role of Mazeppa, in which she appeared practically naked, strapped to the back of a horse.

Photographed by Alphonse Liébert of Paris.

 

Code: 123582
 
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© Paul Frecker 2018