Marthe Bibesco - Exile


Eventually, Valentine and her husband were released from Romanian detention in 1958, and allowed passage to Britain, where Marthe, now totally dependent on her writing for money, bought them a home, the Tullimaar residence at Perranarworthal in Cornwall. She remained in Paris, first living at the Ritz Hotel (1946-1948), then in her apartment at 45, Quai de Bourbon. In 1955, she was appointed a member of the Belgian Academy of French Language and Literature, on the seat previously held by Anna de Noailles (née Bibesco, princess Bassaraba de Brancovan). Marthe cherished the 1962 award of the Légion d'honneur. It was in 1960 that her novel (27 years-in-the-making), La Nymphe Europe, which was really her autobiography, was published by Plon.

Now a grande dame, she enjoyed her last great friendship with a powerful leader, Charles de Gaulle, who invited her in 1963 to an Élysée Palace reception in the honour of the Swedish Sovereigns. De Gaulle also took a copy of Isvor, Pays des Saules with him when he visited Romania in 1968, and told her in the same year: ... you do personify Europe to me. Marthe was 82 years old. She died on 28 November 1973 in Paris.

In January 2001, a national poll of the most influential women in Romania's history placed princess Marthe Bibesco in the first position as the woman of the Millennium and of the 20th century.

Read more about this topic:  Marthe Bibesco

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    the bird in the poplar tree
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    The exile is a singular, whereas refugees tend to be thought of in the mass. Armenian refugees, Jewish refugees, refugees from Franco Spain. But a political leader or artistic figure is an exile. Thomas Mann yesterday, Theodorakis today. Exile is the noble and dignified term, while a refugee is more hapless.... What is implied in these nuances of social standing is the respect we pay to choice. The exile appears to have made a decision, while the refugee is the very image of helplessness.
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