1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Aïssé, Mademoiselle

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AÏSSÉ [a corruption of Haidée], Mademoiselle (c. 1694–1733), French letter-writer, was the daughter of a Circassian chief, and was born about 1694. Her father’s palace was pillaged by the Turks, and as a child of four years old she was sold to the Comte de Ferriol, the French ambassador at Constantinople. She was brought up in Paris by Ferriol’s sister-in-law with her own sons, MM. d’Argental and Pont de Veyle. Her great beauty and romantic history made her the fashion, and she attracted the notice of the regent, Philip, duke of Orleans, Whose offers she had the strength of mind to refuse. She formed a deep and lasting attachment to the Chevalier d’Aydie, by whom she had a daughter. She died in Paris on the 13th of March 1733. Her letters to her friend Madame Calandrini contain much interesting information with regard to contemporary celebrities, especially on Mme. du Deffand and Mme. de Tencin, but they are above all of interest in the picture they afford of the writer’s own tenderness and fidelity. Her Lettres were edited by Voltaire (1787), by J. Ravenel, with a notice by Sainte-Beuve (1846) and by Eugène Asse (1873). Mlle. Aïssé has been the subject of three plays: by A. de Lavergne and P. Woucher (1854), by Louis Bouilhet (1872) and by Dejoux (1898).

See also Courteault, Une Idylle au XVIIIe siècle, Mlle. Aïssé et le Chevalier d’Aydie (Maçon, 1900); and notices prefixed to the editions of 1846 and 1873. There is an interesting essay by E. Gosse in his French Profiles (1905).