When I began my research, Sophie Croizette was discovery for me. She was Pauline Carolus-Duran’s sister and Bernhardt’s biggest rival until she left the stage to marry a banker. She was an engaging personality, sensual and big-hearted. Her motto, Quand même, might be translated as “All the same” or “Nevertheless.” Imagine it spoken with a sly, tolerant twinkle in her eye.
As for the Divine Sarah Bernhardt, someone asked me whether she dressed as exotically as I said she did, and the simple answer is, yes. Much has been written about her for good reason. Her motto was À outrance or “To the hilt,” “Over the top.” For a portrait that catches some of her skinny exoticism, click here. And for another side of her personality, ca. 1877, click here.