Born on this day in the village of Saint-Saveur-en Puisaye, Burgundy, French writer Sidonie-Gabrielle Colette (1873-1954) wrote with extraordinary insight, sensitivity, and sensuality.
Best known for her novel Gigi (1944), she "discovered" actress Audrey Hepburn on the Riviera and pushed for her casting of Gigi on Broadway.
"Writing only leads to more writing," Colette said, a leader in avant-garde Paris artistic circles. She created lyrical prose, and was a journalist and actress. Her lifestyle celebrated the magic of love, chocolates, and champagne. She became a one-name enigma before Marilyn, Elvis, and Madonna.
"For years I had a mass of notes in my diary, but I never would have dared to think them readable," she said.
Intriguing and unconventional, Colette lived a colorful life, full of drama and experimentation. About the positive self-esteem of one of her characters, she once wrote somewhat autobiographically: "The sudden desire to look beautiful made her straighten her back. Beautiful? For whom? Why, for myself, of course."
Considered a national treasure by her compatriots, Colette took pride in her adventures and remarked upon reflection, "What a wonderful life I’ve had! I only wish I’d realized it sooner."
More COLETTE Quotations
Finding happiness is true wisdom.