Man Into Woman (American Edition)

[Copyright Facsimile Image]


               EINAR WEGENER (ANDREAS SPARRE) ABOUT 1920 Frontispiece
EINAR WEGENEREinar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter; married to Gerda Wegener; died as Lili Elbe in Dresden, 1931 (ANDREAS SPARREAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter) ABOUT 1920 Frontispiece

[Title Page Facsimile Image]

MAN INTO WOMAN

An Authentic Record of a Change of Sex

The true story of the miraculous transformation of the Danish painter Einar Wegener (Andreas Sparre)

Edited by NIELS HOYERNiels Hoyer (historical), pseudonym of Ernst Harthern, who composed and edited Man into Woman

Translated from the German by H. J. STENNINGH J Stenning (historical), translator of the English-language editions

Introduction by NORMAN HAIRENorman Haire (1892-1952), an Australian-born physician and prominent sexologist who lived and worked in London, Ch.M., M.B.

With 18 Illustrations

NEW YORK

E.P. DUTTON & CO, INC.

Man Into Woman, Copyright, 1933, By E. P. Dutton & Co., Inc.:: All Rights Reserved: Printed in U.S.A.

[List of Illustrations Facsimile Image]

List of Illustrations

Einar WegenerEinar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter; married to Gerda Wegener; died as Lili Elbe in Dresden, 1931 (Andreas SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter) about 1920 Frontispiece Facing page

LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, ParisParis (historical), capital of France, 1926 - - - - - - 40

LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 and her friend ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923, BeaugencyBeaugency (historical), a town on the Loire river in southern France, FranceFrance is a western European country whose capital is Paris., 1928 (before the operation) - 64

French landscape by Einar WegenerEinar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter; married to Gerda Wegener; died as Lili Elbe in Dresden, 1931, 1929 - 72

Einar WegenerEinar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter; married to Gerda Wegener; died as Lili Elbe in Dresden, 1931, 1929 - - - - - - 80

Einar WegenerEinar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter; married to Gerda Wegener; died as Lili Elbe in Dresden, 1931 as LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, ParisParis (historical), capital of France, January 1930 96

Einar WegenerEinar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter; married to Gerda Wegener; died as Lili Elbe in Dresden, 1931's pictures at CopenhagenCopenhagen (historical), capital of Denmark Exhibition, 1930, in lifetime of Lili ElbeLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 104

Lili ElbeLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany, May 1930, between second and third operations - - - - 112

Lili ElbeLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany, June 1930, after the operation - - - - - - 128

Portrait by Gerda Wegener.Gerda Maria Frederikke Gottlieb Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator; married to Einar Wegener, with LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 as model - - - - - - - 136

In the Women's ClinicMunicipal Women’s Clinic (fictional), modeled on Staatliche Frauenklinik in Dresden, directed by Professor Kurt Warnekros at the time, DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany, 1930 - 152

Lili ElbeLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, CopenhagenCopenhagen (historical), capital of Denmark, October 1930 - - 176

Lili ElbeLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, CopenhagenCopenhagen (historical), capital of Denmark, February 1931 - 208

Portrait of three women (LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 in centre) by Gerda WegenerGerda Maria Frederikke Gottlieb Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator; married to Einar Wegener - - - - - 224

Lili ElbeLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany, 1931, after the operation 240

Grave of Lili ElbeLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 - - - - - 276

Fragment of letter written by Einar WegenerEinar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter; married to Gerda Wegener; died as Lili Elbe in Dresden, 1931, January 1930 - - - - - 280

Fragment of letter written by Lili ElbeLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, June 1931 - - - - - - - 280

Page v

INTRODUCTION

To the reader unfamiliar with the unhappy byways of sexual pathology, the story told in this book must seem incredibly fantastic. Incredible as it may seem, it is true. Or, rather, the facts are true, though I think there is room for differences of opinion about the interpretation of the facts.

There would seem to be no doubt about the following points. A well-known Danish painterEinar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter; married to Gerda Wegener; died as Lili Elbe in Dresden, 1931, whose identity is shrouded in this book under the name of Andreas SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, was born in the 'eighties of the last century. At about the age of twenty he married, and was sufficiently normal both psychologically and physically to be able to fulfil his functions as a husband. Some years later a purely fortuitous happening led him to dress up as a woman, and the disguise was so successful that he followed it by dressing up as a woman on several occasions, on each of which those who were in the secret were surprised at his apparent femininity. In fun, one of his friendsAnna Larssen (1875-1955), a Danish actress, friend of the Wegeners dubbed him, when disguised as a woman, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931. Gradually he began to feel a change taking place in himself. He began to feel that "LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931" was a real individual, who shared the same body as his male self— AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter. The second personality, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, became more and more important, and AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter became convinced that he was a sort of twin being, part male and part
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female in the one body. He began to suffer from disturbances every month in the shape of bleedings from the nose and elsewhere, which he came to regard as representative of menstruation, and he sought the help of many doctors, who, however, were unable to relieve him.

He began to study books on sexual pathology and gradually came to the conclusion that although his external organs were those of a male, and quite normal (though perhaps rather undeveloped), yet his body contained in it the internal sexual organs of a female in addition.

Some of the doctors to whom he went thought him neurotic, some thought him homosexual; but he himself denied the truth of both these diagnoses. One doctor treated him with X-rays, and later on AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter attributed the shrunken state of the female sexual organs which were found in his abdomen to the destructive effect of this X-ray treatment.

Gradually the female personality, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, took on such importance that AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter felt that, unless in some way his male self could be made to give place to LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, he could not go on living. By this time he was in his forties, and his failure to find any doctor who could help him to realize his desire to become a woman led him to the project of suicide if nothing should happen within the next year.

Just as things seemed at their worst he met a famous German doctor from DresdenKurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist who performed all but the first of four surgeries on Lili Elvenes; director of the Women’s Clinic in Dresden (Staatliche Frauenklinik) from 1925 to 1948, who agreed that AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter was probably an intermediate sexual type, furnished, by some sport of nature, with both male and female gonads. He explained that
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there were probably rudimentary ovaries in AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter' abdomen, but that these were unable to develop properly because of the inhibiting influence of the testicles which AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter also possessed.

He proposed that AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter should go to BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany, where certain investigations were to be undertaken. If these investigations confirmed his suppositions he promised to remove AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter' male organs and transplant into him ovaries from a young woman, which would, as the work of the SteinachEugen Steinach (1861–1944), an Austrian physician who pioneered gonadal transplants and early theorized the existence of hormones school had shown, activate the rudimentary ovaries lying dormant in AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter' abdomen.

AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter went to BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany. The investigations confirmed the German doctorKurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist who performed all but the first of four surgeries on Lili Elvenes; director of the Women’s Clinic in Dresden (Staatliche Frauenklinik) from 1925 to 1948's theory, and AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter embarked on a series of operations. The first one was castration. His testicles were removed. A few months later he went to DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany, where his penis was also removed, his abdomen was opened, and the presence of rudimentary ovaries was established, and at the same time ovarian tissue from a healthy young woman of twenty-six was transplanted into him. A little later he underwent another operation, the nature of which is not explained, though it had something to do with the insertion of a canula.

By this time he felt himself to be entirely a woman. The Danish authorities issued him a new passport as a female in the name of Lili ElbeLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, and the King of DenmarkKing (fictional), modeled on Christian X, the King of Denmark from 1912 to 1947 declared his marriage null and void. With his consent, and indeed at his suggestion, his former wifeGerda Maria Frederikke Gottlieb Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator; married to Einar Wegener married a mutual friendFernando Porta (b. 1897), Gerda Wegener’s second husband of theirs in RomeRome (historical), capital of Italy.

A French painterClaude Prévost (historical), friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923, who had been a friend of
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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter and his wifeGerda Maria Frederikke Gottlieb Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator; married to Einar Wegener for many years, now fell in love with LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, and proposed marriage to her.

Before consenting to the marriage LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 made another journey to the German surgeon at DresdenKurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist who performed all but the first of four surgeries on Lili Elvenes; director of the Women’s Clinic in Dresden (Staatliche Frauenklinik) from 1925 to 1948 to tell him that she had received the offer of marriage and to ask him if he could carry out yet another operation on her to enable her to function completely as a woman, to take the female part in intercourse, and to become a mother. An operation for this purpose was carried out; but shortly afterwards LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 died in DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany of heart trouble.

There seems to be no question that the above statements are true. The case was kept secret at first, but through a friend's indiscretion the secret leaked out, and the case was reported in the German and Danish newspapers and caused a great sensation in the year 1931, some time before LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's death.

. . . . .

The story of this strange case has been written by Niels HoyerNiels Hoyer (historical), pseudonym of Ernst Harthern, who composed and edited Man into Woman, partly from his own knowledge, partly from material dictated by LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 herself, partly from LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's diaries, and partly from letters written by LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 and other persons concerned. The biographerNiels Hoyer (historical), pseudonym of Ernst Harthern, who composed and edited Man into Woman states that the surgeon who performed the operationKurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist who performed all but the first of four surgeries on Lili Elvenes; director of the Women’s Clinic in Dresden (Staatliche Frauenklinik) from 1925 to 1948 has passed his account of the case as correct.

. . . . .

The case falls within the domain of sexual pathology, and comes within the category of sexual intermediacy. We are accustomed to classify individuals as male or female, the classification
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being made at birth by inspection of the external genital organs. But modern sexology has pointed out the inadequacy of this rough and ready classification. It must be remembered that in the early embryo it is impossible, even by the most careful examination, to determine the sex. Gradually a little eminence grows up which forms the rudiments of the sexual organs. At first the rudiments of the organs of both sexes develop, but later only one set continues developing, while the other set remains very rudimentary. If development proceeds normally, the individual differentiates sufficiently to be classified for all practical purposes as a male or as a female. But even in the most normal and unambiguous individual, the rudiments of the organs of the other sex are present throughout life. Thus the male possesses a rudimentary uterus and the female a rudimentary penis. So far, we have been speaking of the primary sexual organs, or genital organs.

But there are a number of other, or secondary sexual characters (breasts, width of pelvis, hair, etc.) which differ in the two sexes, and individuals who are classified as male may have secondary sexual characters of a female type and vice versa. When carefully investigated even the apparently most normal male may be found to have certain physical sex characters approximating to the female type, and the apparently most normal female to have sex characters approximating to the male type. One is led to the conclusion that the hundred-per-cent male and the hundred-per-cent female are theoretical types which do not exist in reality.

So far we have dealt only with the physical
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sexual characters, but there are psychological sexual characters which differ as between the sexes, too. Sometimes the presence of marked physical characteristics of the opposite sex is not accompanied by any noticeable psychological intermediacy, or by any change in the direction of sexual desire, i.e., by any trace of homosexual feeling. In other cases some degree of homosexual feeling is present and in yet other cases the sexual intermediacy is marked much more psychologically than it is physically. For a full discussion of this subject the reader is referred to Professor Gregorio MarañonGregorio Marañon (1887-1960), also spelled Marañón, a Spanish physician and author's book, The Evolution of Sex and Intersexual Conditions, which is available in an English translation.

Cases occur, though rarely, where an individual possesses the genital organs of one sex, and in addition more or less complete genital organs belonging to the other sex as well. Such anomalies are known as hermaphrodites, though in human beings the hermaphrodism always seems to be incomplete. There is a small number of curious cases of this sort recorded in sexological literature, though no other case, so far as I know, has been so extreme, or so well recorded, as the case of Andreas SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter.

Thus, when I was a medical student in SydneySydney (historical), a city in Australia, AustraliaAustralia (historical), a continent and a country surrounded by the Indian Ocean whose capital is Canberra., about the year 1912, a man was admitted to the wards of my hospital suffering from regularly recurring hæmorrhages, which were thought to be due to kidney disease. Investigation showed that although his external genital organs were normal, and he was married and able to perform the sexual act as a male, his body contained ovaries.

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In BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany in 1923, I saw, at the clinic of a colleague, an individual who was apparently male, but who felt himself to be a female just as AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter did. This patient, too, had his male organs removed at his own request, and was given injections of ovarian extract. No operation was ever undertaken to determine whether ovaries were present in his body or not. I saw him—or her—again in 1926, after the removal of the male organs, and quite recently I received a report about the case. The individual is very unhappy, and has not succeeded in becoming completely a woman.

Professor SteinachEugen Steinach (1861–1944), an Austrian physician who pioneered gonadal transplants and early theorized the existence of hormones, of ViennaVienna (historical), a city in Austria, has for some decades been carrying on a series of investigations into sexual physiology, and has had considerable success in changing males into females and females into males among lower animals, such as rats and guinea-pigs. He has even been successful in enabling a formerly male rat to develop breast glands which function to the extent of producing milk to nourish the litter of another rat; but up to the present he has not succeeded in completing the transformation so that a former male could become pregnant and give birth to a litter.

Among birds, there are a number of cases on record where hens, which have laid eggs and produced many chickens, have gradually changed their plumage, begun to crow, and developed into cocks, and as cocks have fertilized other hens.

But in human beings, although mild grades of sexual intermediacy are by no means rare, cases like that of Andreas SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter arise but seldom; and I cannot help thinking that until we know more about sexual physiology it is unwise to
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carry out, even at the patient's own request, such operations as were performed in this case. It would, I think, have been better to try the effect of psychological treatment. Andreas SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter might either have been cured, or at least enabled to adapt himself to life. By proper psychological treatment the duplication of personality might have been resolved and he might have been enabled to lead a reasonably happy life instead of embarking on a series of painful and dangerous operations which ended only with his death.

There seems to be no need to disclose the real names of the persons mentioned in this book, except to say that Andreas SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter was the well-known Danish painter Einar WegenerEinar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter; married to Gerda Wegener; died as Lili Elbe in Dresden, 1931.

127 Harley Street,

London, W.I. Norman HaireNorman Haire (1892-1952), an Australian-born physician and prominent sexologist who lived and worked in London

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FOREWORD

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In accordance with Lili ElbeLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's last wishes, I have arranged the papers she left behind in the form of this book. It is a veracious life story, recorded by a person whose earthly course assumed the shape of an unparalleled and incredible tragedy of fate, the life story of a person whose afflictions were outside the range of our ordinary ideas.

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The German doctorKurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist who performed all but the first of four surgeries on Lili Elvenes; director of the Women’s Clinic in Dresden (Staatliche Frauenklinik) from 1925 to 1948 whose bold operations enabled the mortally ill and despairing Danish painter Einar WegenerEinar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter; married to Gerda Wegener; died as Lili Elbe in Dresden, 1931 (Andreas SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter) to go on living in complete harmony with the dictates of his nature has approved the book in its German version. At Lili ElbeLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's desire, fictitious names have been employed for the persons who figure in her narrative.

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She has retained her own name, chosen out of gratitude to the German city in which she fulfilled her human destinyDresden (historical), city in Germany.

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The German edition of this book was preceded by a Danish edition, and arrangements are being made for editions of the book to appear in other languages.

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Lili ElbeLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's book must be dedicated in gratitude to her great helper in DresdenKurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist who performed all but the first of four surgeries on Lili Elvenes; director of the Women’s Clinic in Dresden (Staatliche Frauenklinik) from 1925 to 1948, her life comradeGerda Maria Frederikke Gottlieb Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator; married to Einar Wegener in the sunny south, and her truest friend in ParisClaude Prévost (historical), friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923.

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Niels HoyerNiels Hoyer (historical), pseudonym of Ernst Harthern, who composed and edited Man into Woman

I.

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The scene is ParisParis (historical), capital of France in the Quartier Saint GermainQuartier Saint Germain (historical), also known as the Latin Quarter (see D1), section of Paris. The time a February evening in 1930. In a quiet street which harbours a stately palace there is a small restaurant, whose regular customers are foreigners, and mostly artists.

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Among them this evening were AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter and Grete SparreGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, two Danish painters, and their Italian friend Ernesto RossiniErnesto Rossini (fictional), modeled on Eric Allatini (1886–1943), friend of the Wegeners; married to Hélène Allatini, with his elegant French wife ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques. The friends had not seen each other for a whole year. One couple had been travelling in the North, the other in the South of EuropeEurope (historical), a continent in the Northern Hemisphere.

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"Skaal!" cried AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, in the good old Nordic way, and raised his glass. "This wine, children, is for the soul what alpine sun is for the body. And this reminds me of a glorious legend of the cathedral of SevilleCathedral of Seville (historical), most likely, Catedral de Santa María de la Sede, known as Seville Cathedral, which GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and I were admiring a short time ago. Under the plinth of the highest column they have immured a sunbeam—that is the whole legend."

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"Splendid!" cried ErnestoErnesto Rossini (fictional), modeled on Eric Allatini (1886–1943), friend of the Wegeners; married to Hélène Allatini, with enthusiasm.

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"Heavenly, AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter!" chimed in ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques, warmly pressing his hand.

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And GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator smiled happily and thoughtfully.

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GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and ErnestoErnesto Rossini (fictional), modeled on Eric Allatini (1886–1943), friend of the Wegeners; married to Hélène Allatini exchanged a multitude of travel impressions—wanderings through museums and disreputable alleys in CadizCádiz (historical), port city in Spain and AntwerpAntwerp (historical), a city in Belgium, voyages of discovery through bazaars in the BalkansBalkans (historical), region in southeastern Europe and in marine stores in The HagueThe Hague (historical), city in the Netherlands and AmsterdamAmsterdam (historical), capital of the Netherlands. Each tried to outdo the other. Thus GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator; thus ErnestoErnesto Rossini (fictional), modeled on Eric Allatini (1886–1943), friend of the Wegeners; married to Hélène Allatini—completely absorbed in their subject, their keen eyes alight with the enthusiasm of the artist.

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Meanwhile, AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter was leaning attentive, while ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques was whispering in his ear the latest amusing, and even scandalous, anecdotes from RomeRome (historical), capital of Italy and MadridMadrid (historical), capital of Spain.

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"You are not drinking too much, AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter?" suddenly inquired ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques, pausing in the midst of one of the "latest" incredible stories, only to be related in a whisper. . . . She had noticed the growing nervous excitement of her companion. "You want to be fit and well to-night."

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ErnestoErnesto Rossini (fictional), modeled on Eric Allatini (1886–1943), friend of the Wegeners; married to Hélène Allatini and GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator caught up ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques's words. GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator gazed mutely at AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter. ErnestoErnesto Rossini (fictional), modeled on Eric Allatini (1886–1943), friend of the Wegeners; married to Hélène Allatini took his friend's hand. "Is LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 causing you trouble again?" he inquired, full of solicitude.

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"You've said it, ErnestoErnesto Rossini (fictional), modeled on Eric Allatini (1886–1943), friend of the Wegeners; married to Hélène Allatini," replied AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter very seriously. "This condition is gradually becoming intolerable. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 is no longer content to share her existence with me. She wants to have an existence of her own. I don't know whether you understand me. . . . I—I'm no longer any use. Cannot do anything more. I'm finished. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 has known this for a long time. That's how matters stand. And consequently she rebels more vigorously every day. What shall I do with myself? The question may sound strange, though only fools
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think they are indispensable, irreplaceable. But not another word of this. Let us drink! Let us drink a fiery, sweet Asti, to please ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques!"

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"Bravo!" cried ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques, not taking her eyes off AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, who then rose wearily and made for the bar.

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"Tell me quickly," whispered ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques, looking towards her friend, "how is your husband? I don't like his looks."

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GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator had lost her smile. "He has never been worse."

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ErnestoErnesto Rossini (fictional), modeled on Eric Allatini (1886–1943), friend of the Wegeners; married to Hélène Allatini and ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques gazed silently at their friend.

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"I have almost given up all hope of saving him," said GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator very softly, "unless a miracle—"

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ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques interrupted her sharply. "Look here, you're talking of a miracle." GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator regarded her friend inquiringly. "Well, listen. A very good friend of oursProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist is now in ParisParis (historical), capital of France. He comes from DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany. He is a woman's doctor. He rang us up early to-day, shortly after we had spoken to AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter on the telephone. And then I thought at once: 'If anybody can help AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, it is this doctor from DresdenProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist.' And the matter is urgent, as the doctorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist must return to GermanyGermany is a western European country whose capital is Berlin. to-morrow afternoon. I will make an appointment with him this evening."

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GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator made a listless movement with her hand. "Dearest ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques, it is useless. AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter won't see any more doctors."

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ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques seized both GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator's hands.

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"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, dearest, now you must not contradict; this time you must obey, and I will call on the ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist this very evening. I know the ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist will be able to help him."

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GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator slowly lit a cigarette. She blew away clouds of blue smoke and stared into the haze.

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Then she said slowly, without excitement, and distinctly.

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"Good, ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques; go and see your German ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist, and I will persuade AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter to call upon you early in the morning."

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter returned at this moment, holding up two bottles of Asti as if they were booty.

. . . . .

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When GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter were strolling at a later hour along the avenue near which their studio dwelling was situated, she avowed at first cautiously, but afterwards with energy, what she had arranged with ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques. AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter was beside himself. He stood still in the middle of the road. He would not be examined either by a German or by a French, or by an Indian mountebank. He was through with these bloodsuckers.

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He had been ill for many years. Innumerable doctors and specialists had examined him—without result. Now he was utterly tired. Life had become a torment to him.

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Nobody understood what was wrong with him. But his sufferings were of the strangest kind. A specialist in Versailles had without further ado declared him to be an hysterical subject; apart from this he was a perfectly normal man, who had only to behave reasonably like a man to become perfectly well again; all that the patient lacked was the conviction that he was perfectly healthy and normal.

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A young doctor, likewise in VersaillesVersailles (historical), a royal palace outside Paris, had
[Page 19]
indeed pronounced that "everything was not as it should be" . . . but he had dismissed AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter with the following reassuring words: "Don't distress yourself about your physical state. You are so healthy and unimpaired that you could stand anything."

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A radiologist had been very active, but he had nearly killed AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter.

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The diagnosis of a medical personage from Vienna, a man of somewhat mystical temperament and a friend of SteinachEugen Steinach (1861–1944), an Austrian physician who pioneered gonadal transplants and early theorized the existence of hormones, pointed in the right direction. "Only a bold and daring doctor can help you," this man had declared; "but where will you find such a doctor to-day?"

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Thereupon AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter had taken heart and approached three surgeons.

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The first had declared that he had never in all his life performed "beautifying operations"; the second examined exclusively the blind-gut; and the third declared AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter to be "perfectly crazy".

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Most people would probably have agreed with this third specialist: for AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter believed that in reality he was not a man, but a woman.

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And he had grown tired of it all, and sworn to himself that he would not visit any more doctors. He had made up his mind to end his existence. The first of May was to be the fatal day. Spring is a dangerous time for people who are sick and tired.

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He had thought over everything, even the mode of his departure. It was to be, to some extent, a polite obeisance to Nature. Now it was February. March and April would be waiting months. A reprieve . . . he felt calm.

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The only thing which tormented him, which pained him unspeakably, was the thought of his wife—the loyal friend and companion of his life.

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Grete SparreGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator was an artist of great talent. Her pictures made an exciting and tingling impression, like a vapour from the jungles of ParisParis (historical), capital of France.

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Perhaps because their marriage had been, above all, a comradeship almost from the beginning, they both found life pleasant and worth while only when they were together.

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They were hardly adult and were still attending the Copenhagen academy of artArt Academy (fictional), modeled on The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts (Det Kongelige Danske Kunstakademi) in Copenhagen, where Einar and Gerda Wegener studied and met when they had married. A few days before the wedding AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter had sold his very first picture at his very first exhibition. They had lived mostly abroad, chiefly in ParisParis (historical), capital of France, and this life abroad had contributed to strengthen the tie which bound them.

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It was therefore inevitable that AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter frequently had moments when it seemed as if he were behaving like a traitor towards GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator. He had been forced to recognize that he could work no longer, and he was apprehensive of becoming a burden on GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator. This thought had been worrying him for months, poisoning the fount of his enjoyment.

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GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator was aware of his thoughts. Yet she suspected that whatever she proposed to offer in the way of new hope would prove futile. There were so many things that bound them together, so many struggles, so many memories, bright and dark, and, perhaps most of all, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931. For AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter was, in fact, two beings: a man, AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, and a girl, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931. They might even be called twins who had both taken possession of one body at the same time.

Page 21
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In character they were entirely different.

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Gradually LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 had gained such predominance over AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter that she could still be traced in him, even after she had retired, but never the reverse. Whereas he felt tired and seemed to welcome death, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was joyous and in the freshness of youth.

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She had become GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator's favourite model. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 wandered through her best works.

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GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator felt herself to be the protectress of this carefree and helpless LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931. And AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter felt himself to be the protector of both. His ultimate hope was to die in order that LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 might awaken to a new life.

Page 22

II.

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The next morning GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator spoke affectionately to him, pointing out lightly that he must call upon ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques if for no other reason than as an act of courtesy. When there he could always find an excuse if he could not bring himself to visit her German ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist.

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An hour later he was on his way to PassyPassy (historical), an upscale neighborhood in Paris, home of many avant-garde artists in the 1920s, where ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques lived: punctually at twelve o'clock her car stopped in front of the house where the German doctorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist was staying. While ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques was pulling the bell, AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter whispered: "Perhaps it will turn out quite interesting to see your German celebrityProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist face to face, as he belongs to a race in whom interest in scientific investigation is so strongly pronounced that this interest—"

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"For heaven's sake," interrupted ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques, "don't start delivering a lecture on the doorstep."

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter seized his friend's hand. "ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques, I only mean . . . I only hope . . . How shall I express it?"

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ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques looked very seriously at her friend, who was pale with excitement. "Go on, AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter."

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And then he blurted out: ". . . That he will not regard me merely as a sorry renegade . . . because . . . I would rather be a woman than a man."

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"No, AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, I will answer for that."

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Footsteps were heard inside the house.

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The door was opened and a servant received
[Page 23]
them; but before he had found time to announce them a tall, thin gentleman advanced to meet them. A dark-blue sakkoanzug *See note. emphasized the austere elegance of his appearance in an almost military manner. His hair, which was brushed in a smooth mass across his high forehead, was dark, while his small moustache, trimmed in American style, was of a light fair colour.

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When AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter later on tried to recall these features to memory his mind was a mere blank every time. From those blue, deep-set eyes, which were bright and dark at the same time, radiated a strange, captivating charm.

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It was Werner KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist.

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter felt his heart beat faster. While the ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist was conducting them with a somewhat ceremonious cordiality into the drawing-room, exchanging the while a few words with ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques, it occurred to AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter for the first time in his life that German was a beautiful and musical language.

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As in a dream he listened to the conversation between the two, even when ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques was telling the ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist about him and his doleful story, throwing him now and again, as if accidentally, a quick, affectionate glance.

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter could think of nothing, and was conscious of nothing but the doctor's voice. It was as if he were laid under a spell, the spell of this voice. It reminded him of the ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist's eyes; it, too, was light and dark at the same time. Both the eyes and the voice penetrated into the innermost recesses of his soul.

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And what would this voice have to say to him?
[Page 24]
And these eyes, what would their glance announce to him?

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A death sentence? Did he expect anything other than this? Did he expect anything at all? Had he come here for any definite purpose?

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The ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist stood in front of him, hardly looked at him, and spoke only a few brief words to him. And AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter followed the professorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist into an anteroom, where he was told to undress. "Now I feel like a sleepwalker," thought AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter in a vague and remote manner. He must obey, without questioning. He wanted to say something, and fumbled for German words.

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"You need not give me any explanations, sir," the ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist interrupted him considerately.

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"It hurts here, doesn't it, and there, and likewise there, doesn't it?" And his hand slowly glided over AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter' body. All that AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter needed to do was to nod quickly and shyly. An almost terrifying astonishment gripped him. How did this strange man know where his pains were located?

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And this astonishment grew into amazement when the ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist, to whom ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques had handed a bundle of photographs of LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, took the portraits out of the envelope and laid them on the table in the order of the years marked on their backs, which the ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist had not observed.

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"There we have the development clearly marked," said the ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist bluntly. AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter did not even nod.

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"I hear you have had Röntgen Rays treatment by a radiologist; but unless he previously made chemical or microscopical examinations it is impossible to say whether he exerted an
[Page 25]
unfavourable effect upon the germ glands, and perhaps upon any existing ovaries . . . this must be disclosed by a further examination."

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"Ovaries!" AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter almost shrieked. "Then . . . I . . . have . . ." He could get no further. He could scarcely breathe from excitement. Everything was going round.

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"Extremely probable," replied the ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist, imperturbable and positive; yet the sound of his voice seemed slightly muffled, very soft and discreet. AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter was to be reminded continually of this lightly veiled voice, and not merely AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter. "For I think you possess both male and female organs, and that neither of them has sufficient room to develop properly. It is fortunate for you that you have such a pronounced feminine feeling. That's why I think I shall be able to help you."

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter had to clutch at his heart. He leaned over, in order not to miss a single word that fell from the lips of this amazing man. He stared fixedly at him, expecting to find confirmation of his words in his glance.

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"Well, ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist, what am I? . . . What . . . ?"

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The ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist rose, paced up and down the room for a while as if to think the matter over, and then turned to AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter again. And once more AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter drank in his words.

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"Come to me in GermanyGermany is a western European country whose capital is Berlin.. I hope I shall be able to give you a new life and a new youth."

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These words were uttered with extreme simplicity.

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter stood up and struggled for speech.

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"Then it will be LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 who survives?"

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"Yes," answered Werner KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist. "I will operate on you, and give you new and strong ovaries.
[Page 26]
This operation will remove the stoppage in your development which occurred at the age of puberty. But first of all you will have to undergo various treatment of a preliminary nature in BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany. Then you can come to me in DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany."

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With these words ended the serious and fateful conversation between the strange man and AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, who was still sitting a little breathless when the ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist brought ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques into his consulting-room. And she smiled to conceal her emotion.

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The doctorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist stood apart from them thoughtfully, and looked suddenly at AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter and then at ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques. "May I speak quite openly?" he said, glancing from one to the other.

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"Please do," replied AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter. "I have no secrets from ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques."

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"Well, then," began the ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist, "I hear that you are married."

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter blushed with embarrassment.

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"Your marriage . . . perhaps you can tell me something about it, because, as a doctor, at any rate . . ."

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Each of them was conscious of something fantastic at this moment, although the question seemed the most natural thing in the world.

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"Perhaps I had better go," suggested ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques, full of solicitude for her friend.

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter caught hold of her. "No, ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques, no, don't go."

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The ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist came to the assistance of both. His smile worked at this moment like a deliverance. "What is the attitude, for instance, of—I thought I heard the name LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 just now—well, of LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, towards men? I mean, do men interest LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931?"

Page 27
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"Yes, indeed," laughed ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques; "it is positively incredible what an attraction LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 has for the other sex."

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter attempted to interrupt her. The ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist was now laughing heartily.

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"Let the lady go on, please." And AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter had perforce to listen while she continued: "I have seen it with my own eyes at various carnivals and balls."

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The ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist became serious again. "What you have just told me, madam, is all of a piece with the picture I have formed in my own mind. . . . For the rest, the operation which has become necessary, especially as it is the first of its kind, will create a number of remarkable situations, not least, from a legal point of view. But"—and with this he came close to AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter and took his hand—"I promise you I will not leave LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 in the lurch and that I will assist her with her first independent steps into life."

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter looked down at the stranger's hand. He did not know what he ought to do. He looked helplessly around the room, then released the doctor's hand and stretched out both arms to ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques, as if imploring help. She hurried to him and embraced him maternally.

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"ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques," he stammered through his tears, "the life which is now coming with which I shall have nothing whatever to do . . . this life, ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques, you have saved. Without you, ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques, I should never have come here."

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Werner KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist was standing in front of the window, looking silently into the street.

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter went towards him, weeping. The ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist took his hands and said quietly: "I understand you. I know how much you have suffered."

Page 28

III.

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For hours GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator had been waiting in the little studio for her husband's return.

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When at last he entered, he was as pale as death. GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator hurried to him. She led him to the sofa, upon which he collapsed helplessly. GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator remained sitting by him for a long time without saying a word.

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When at length AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter began to speak, she listened to him with closed eyes, and AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter too spoke with closed eyes. How much of it all was a dream? And how much reality? Did that which was then beginning mean redemption, the redemption? Whither led the way for him, for her, for both?

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And AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, completely upset by all that he had just experienced, told his story in broken words.

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At length he rose to his feet. Without a word he took GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator's hands and led her to the easel in front of the broad window, through which the northern sky was lighting up the room. A large picture was leaning against the easel, upon which three female figures were to be seen. One of the women bore GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator's features, another bore ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques's features, and the third figure bore AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter' —LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's features!

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"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator," he then said, "be thankful that you
[Page 29]
have believed in LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 to the last. You know that I have never been able to doubt her. I knew that the day would come. . . . I am so happy."

. . . . .

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On the evening of this fateful day AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter collapsed. His powers of resistance were at an end.

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Not until then did he dare to acknowledge to himself how great his torment and despair had been during these last years. Now he could be frank with himself. Now he must be. . . . Yet he badly needed help, but had a friend who would assist him, his brother-in-lawChristian (fictional), Andreas’s brother-in-law; modeled on Thomas Christian Thomsen (1883-1963), married to Einar’s sister Christiane and father of Einar’s nephew, Sigurd, in whom he had confided for years and who knew the secret of LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931. AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter poured out his heart to his distant relative.

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"ParisParis (historical), capital of France.

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"29th January, 1930.

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"Dear ChristianChristian (fictional), Andreas’s brother-in-law; modeled on Thomas Christian Thomsen (1883-1963), married to Einar’s sister Christiane and father of Einar’s nephew, Sigurd,

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"You have not heard from me for a long time, because I have been able to tell you nothing good about LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931. From time to time I have been examined by several doctors, but without result. Throughout they prescribed sedative remedies, which left me no better nor wiser than I was before. For I want to know what is happening to me, even if it hurts. After consulting with GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques took me to one of her personal acquaintances, who received me three hours before he was leaving ParisParis (historical), capital of France. Then something happened which sounds almost like a miracle! I had a consultation with the famous surgeon and woman's doctor Professor Werner KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist,
[Page 30]
of DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany. Strangely enough, he resembled you. He examined me a long time, and then declared that my case was so rare that only one similar case had been known up till now. He added that in the condition in which I am at present, I could hardly be regarded as a living creature, because the ray treatment had been a great mistake, especially as it had not been preceded by microscopical examination. Now he fears that this treatment in the dark may have destroyed my organs—male as well as female. Consequently, he wants me to go to BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany as quickly as possible for the purpose of a microscopical examination.

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"Some time afterwards he will operate on me himself. He wants to remove the dead (and formerly imperfect) male organs, and to restore the female organs with new and fresh material. Then it will be Lili who will survive!

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"Her weak girl's body will then be able to develop, and she will feel as young as her new and fresh organs. Dear ChristianChristian (fictional), Andreas’s brother-in-law; modeled on Thomas Christian Thomsen (1883-1963), married to Einar’s sister Christiane and father of Einar’s nephew, Sigurd, I am now sitting here and weeping like a child while I am writing you these lines. It seems so like a miracle that I dare not believe it. One thing, however, consoles me—that were it otherwise I must soon die. GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and I believe we are dreaming, and are fearful of waking. It is too wonderful to think that LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 will be able to live, and that she will be the happiest girl in the world—and that this ghastly nightmare of my life is drawing to an end. This wretched comedy as a man! Without GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator I should have thrown up the sponge long ago. But in these dark days I have
[Page 31]
had a fresh opportunity of seeing what a splendid girl she is . . . she is an angel. Over-exertions, her own sufferings, have left her unscathed. She has contrived to work for two, now that I am no longer worth much. I do what I am able, of course, and have exhibited and sold with success in all the important Salons. But now all this is over. I am no longer fit for anything. I am like a wretched grub which is waiting to become a butterfly. The operation is urgent, and the doctorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist would like me to proceed to BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany immediately, as some twenty days must elapse between the first examination and the operation. And I must be in DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany on the day he is ready to create LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931. He will send me medicine, which I am to take, in order to support the internal organs and thereby keep me alive until then. For practical reasons I begged for some delay, and I told him that I should prefer so to arrange matters as to proceed to BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany via CopenhagenCopenhagen (historical), capital of Denmark, as I wanted first to hold an exhibition in DenmarkDenmark is a Scandinavian country in northern Europe whose capital is Copenhagen.. I would then proceed from BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany to DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany at the beginning of April.

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"This does not particularly please the doctorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist; but he understood that I had suggested this for practical reasons.

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"Now, I do not know whether it is due to excitement, but my condition has worsened to such an extent that I no longer feel able to make preparations for an exhibition and attend to everything it involves—I realize that I have no time to lose.

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"Hence, I want your help.

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"Will you lend me the money for the operation and the stay in the nursing-home? I do not know
[Page 32]
how much it will cost. I only know that ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques has so arranged it that the ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist is taking an exceptionally low fee. Out of consideration for GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator I dare not take money from our savings; the less so as our trip to RomeRome (historical), capital of Italy and my illness has cost us so much.

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"I—or we—have deposited many pictures with Messrs. Heyman and HaslundHeyman and Haslund (fictional and historical), Svend Heyman (1878–1931), Ole who owned Ole Haslands Hus with Georg Haslund (1877–1962), where the Wegeners exhibited in Copenhagen, of CopenhagenCopenhagen (historical), capital of Denmark, and I estimate their value to be between 7,000 and 10,000 kronen. I do not, however, know what the operation will cost, but I estimate it will come to between 4,000 and 5,000 kronen in all. I give you all these pictures in DenmarkDenmark is a Scandinavian country in northern Europe whose capital is Copenhagen. by way of security in the event of my death—and in any event. If the affair turns out badly, the pictures can be sold, and if it turns out well, we can soon repay you the money. Our earning powers are good, and we have many large orders.

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"Tell no one except my sisterSister (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s sister, Christiane Thomsen (1881–1954) anything of the contents of this letter, and be good enough to let me know what you decide as quickly as possible, first by telegram and then by letter.

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"It is only because I have the feeling that death is on my track that I send you this letter. Up till now I have never incurred debts in any quarter. Warmest greetings to you and the sisterSister (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s sister, Christiane Thomsen (1881–1954) from GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and

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"AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter."

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Two days later his brother-in-lawChristian (fictional), Andreas’s brother-in-law; modeled on Thomas Christian Thomsen (1883-1963), married to Einar’s sister Christiane and father of Einar’s nephew, Sigurd's answer arrived: a short telegram:

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"Don't worry. Whatever you need is at your disposal."

Page 33
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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter breathed again; he began to summon up new courage.

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Werner KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist had promised to send him early news, the signal to strike his tent.

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One evening he said to GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator: "I often find myself thinking of my old schoolmaster now. He used to tell us the story of the negroes of Saint Croix, who broke out into revolt a day before their emancipation from slavery. Now I understand their feelings. I feel I can wait no longer."

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A few days later, on a Monday morning, ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques received a telegram from a friend in BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany directing AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter to arrive in BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany not later than the following Saturday and to stay at a specified hotel, which the ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist frequented during his visits to BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany. A letter would be awaiting AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter in the hotel.

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Two days later AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter was on his way to BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany.

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GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques accompanied him to the train.

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Since the arrival of the telegram he had scarcely uttered a word. He seemed like a man living in a dream. Every joy and every sorrow he shut up in his heart. Even at the moment of farewell he scarcely betrayed any excitement. To be alone . . . to get away . . . fleeing towards a new fate . . . fleeing from past and future . . . and—to refrain from thinking until the goal was reached. . . . What goal?

Page 34

IV.

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The train moved slowly away. AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter had a seat by the window.

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Out of old habit he had lit a cigarette. One after another he smoked. . . . From time to time he mechanically flicked off the ashes.

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He was a prey to that complete mental lassitude which so frequently supervenes upon hasty travel preparations the moment the traveller suddenly finds himself alone in the departing train.

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Horrible ideas assailed him when he suddenly realized that he had now surrendered himself. He fell into a fever of apprehension.

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Suddenly he had a vision of the two beloved faces. GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator . . . ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques . . . and gradually the two faces changed into one. . . .He had only one name for them both: home, and now, it occurred to him, ParisParis (historical), capital of France.

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He looked out, as if he were seeking them: ParisParis (historical), capital of France . . . ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques . . . GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator.

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When farewells were being said he had not once leaned out of the window. . . . The Eiffel TowerEiffel Tower (historical), the most famous Parisian landmark, constructed in 1887 . . . the mirage in the sky of the towering dome: Sacré CœurSacré-Coeur (historical), a Roman Catholic church in Paris. . . ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques. . . GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator. . . all had vanished for ever.

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For ever? Yes, for ever! And he, Andreas SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, would never return to ParisParis (historical), capital of France.

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Perhaps another being. . . . He was unable to pursue the thought to its end.
[Page 35]
GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator . . . ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques . . . ParisParis (historical), capital of France. . . . This triad accompanied him, the fugitive. Now he heard it suddenly in the rhythm of the train: fugitive . . . fugitive. . . .

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The train raced through northern FranceNorthern France (historical), France is a western European country. We had to distinguish Northern France from France because in some languages Northern France is one word and can signify a specific region with its unique identity..

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Across the landscape new townships were springing up out of the ruins. Here and there were vast, strange-looking rectangles with fantastic crops. They were not cornfields: they were fields of crosses, soldiers' cemeteries, plantations of the dead. Cross set close to cross as far as eye could see.

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And he thought of GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator. Why had he not allowed her to accompany him? She had implored him to do so. And yet he had forced her to remain behind in ParisParis (historical), capital of France . . . and to wait. He pulled himself together, lit a cigarette, and put the thought out of his mind.

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The train reached the frontier between FranceFrance is a western European country whose capital is Paris. and BelgiumBelgium (historical), a country in western Europe whose capital is Brussels.. He gazed indifferently out of the window. The last seat in the compartment was now occupied.

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Through BelgiumBelgium (historical), a country in western Europe whose capital is Brussels. the train crawled at a snail's pace. AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter strolled up and down the dining-car and mixed a cocktail. It was not yet six o'clock. The train stopped at every tiny village. Passengers alighted and entered in a leisurely way, as if they had endless time on their hands.

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Then the German frontier was reached, and a new engine imparted new energy to the journey. Slowly the night descended, and soon the train was rushing through the darkness.

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter had lingered over his meal in the dining-car and had drunk more wine than usual to deaden his feelings and lull the pain caused him by the
[Page 36]
vibration and rolling of the train. But he must return to his compartment. He could scarcely keep on his feet. At length he sank back in his corner again, clenched his teeth, and closed his eyes. All his bridges were burned. Everything lay behind him. His whole life seemed to him to be something that was past, something that was lost.

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He resolved not to think. But his brain gave him no rest. Would it not perhaps be best to abandon this fantastic experiment? For what it was proposed to do to him was only an experiment after all. Would it not have been more rational to live out his life to the end as it was shaped for him, to let this life ebb away from him?

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He thought of the letter which he had lately written to Werner KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist:

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"Yours for life and death, provided LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 survives."

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Every particle of masculine pride that dwelt in him stirred and gripped him. "I must reach the goal. I must hold out." He spoke his thoughts half aloud, and several fellow-travellers regarded him inquiringly.

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He had to laugh. . . . Not in vain was he a native of CopenhagenCopenhagen (historical), capital of Denmark, where nothing is ever taken seriously.

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"So," said AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter to himself, "let us write our obituary. It's not a matter to be taken tragically."

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And then he began rapidly to compose the sort of notice that would be published, appraising him as artist.

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"The painter Andreas SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter is dead. He died in the train between ParisParis (historical), capital of France and BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany. His
[Page 37]
fellow-travellers thought he had fallen asleep in one of the corner seats of his compartment. The cause of death was probably a heart attack.

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"A happy and harmonious artistic life here came to an abrupt close. He was a man in the prime of life. After searching for a long time and experimenting in various ways, he seemed to have found his style. His pictures, which mostly originated in FranceFrance is a western European country whose capital is Paris. and ItalyItaly is a European country whose capital is Rome., were sometimes bright and bathed in colour, sometimes dark and somewhat sombre, but always charged with sentiment and natural feeling. Two subjects he preferred above all else: ParisParis (historical), capital of France, whose embankments, bridges, and towers he succeeded, with no little mastery, in reproducing in their lightly veiled pearl-grey atmosphere, and landscapes under lowering skies, showing in vivid lights the trees and houses in the background. It was especially in pictures of the latter kind, these strong, very masculinely conceived storm pictures, that Andreas SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter found an outlet for his talent.

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"We, who were acquainted with his soft, often effeminate appearance, and his laughing, joyous tones in conversation, noted this with astonishment, and the thought frequently struck us that whatever masculine force resided in him found its outlet in these strong, somewhat wild and wilful pictures.

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"He painted very quickly, and thus it happened that he found time to devote himself to many other things beside his art. His knowledge was really comprehensive. Very characteristic was an answer which we once heard from his own lips, in the TrianonGrand Trianon (historical), a palace on the estate of Versailles outside Paris, addressed by him to an older
[Page 38]
colleague. The latter had expressed his annoyance at the fact that a young colleague was beginning a picture in what he thought was too systematic a way. 'You must pardon me if I don't share your view,' retorted Andreas SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, 'but I do believe that it is impossible to paint a leaf of a rose correctly unless one knows the last thing about the influence of Assyrian bas-relief upon the sculpture of the Greeks.'

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"On another occasion he expressed himself in the following way: 'I cannot understand how lightly most of my older colleagues take their art—how easily satisfied they are with their performances. As for me, I calculate I should require a thousand years to become a decent painter.' Thus seriously did Andreas SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter take his art, at any rate.

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"The greater portion of his life he had spent far from his Danish home—in ItalyItaly is a European country whose capital is Rome., HollandHolland (the Netherlands, historical), a country in northwestern Europe whose capital is Amsterdam., GermanyGermany is a western European country whose capital is Berlin., and FranceFrance is a western European country whose capital is Paris.. He lived mostly in ParisParis (historical), capital of France.

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"The reason why he turned his back in early manhood on CopenhagenCopenhagen (historical), capital of Denmark, although his art was highly appreciated there from the beginning, was because CopenhagenCopenhagen (historical), capital of Denmark and DenmarkDenmark is a Scandinavian country in northern Europe whose capital is Copenhagen. did not seem to him to be the right soil for his wife's art. In CopenhagenCopenhagen (historical), capital of Denmark he had frequently been obliged to hear how much his pictures were preferred to those of his wife. And that was perhaps the worst thing that could be said to him. In ParisParis (historical), capital of France, where the contrary was generally the case, he felt at home for this very reason. He felt his wife's successes as his own successes, for his dominant characteristic was chivalry towards his wife, as towards women generally.

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"For the rest, his was a complex, enigmatic
[Page 39]
nature. Despite the inevitable influences to which every artist in ParisParis (historical), capital of France is exposed, he remained fundamentally a Northern painter, and his art, in its quintessence, had little affinity with Latin, but every affinity with Teutonic influences. His personal outlook was European. He maintained a constant intercourse with French philosophers and writers, with Polish violinists, with Russian architects, and German painters.

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"In collaboration with a French friendCharles Guyot (1892-1963?), French writer, co-author of Les Livres des Vikings (1924) with Einar Wegener he wrote a book about Northern sagas, which passed through many editions in ParisParis (historical), capital of France. Of this he was not a little proud. And he took pleasure in the fact that through this book he had been the means of opening the eyes of the Latin reading world to the Teutonic world of ideas, an undertaking which in the post-War period (the book appeared in the year 1924) deserves praise as the throwing of an intellectual bridge between the Latin and the Teutonic worlds.

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"Without being himself a practised musician, he cherished a deep love of music.

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"In recent years his health had not been particularly good. He had frequently complained of pains, but always in a restrained and smiling way, so that even the doctors whom he was eventually obliged to consult were misled as to his real condition or were unable to realize the serious state of his health.

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"And now death has so abruptly—and to the deep sorrow of his many friends near and far—terminated this versatile artistic career, which to all of us who have known him must seem like an unfinished romance. . . ."

Page 40
a1c04p036

"Full stop," said AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter to himself. "Full stop." And he thought that, in much the same language as he had just been using, someone else had secretly written down his career in a diary—GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, his faithful life's companion, as she too thought that he would die suddenly. One night he had found her asleep over her diary. He was careful not to let GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator suspect that he knew of the existence of this diary.

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The train had passed AixAix (historical), city in Germany long ago. Would they never reach CologneCologne (historical), city in Germany? he moaned inwardly.

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter had not booked a sleeping-berth. He did not care for this modern travelling comfort. To be perched aloft with perfect strangers was repellent to his fastidiousness. An unconquerable aversion forbade him to undress in the presence of other men. He had often been chaffed on this account. Only GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator understood his repugnance.

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At last, CologneCologne (historical), city in Germany! All his fellow travellers left the compartment. "They have sleeping-berths," thought AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter gleefully. He was left alone.

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After a short time the train started again. AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter lit a fresh cigarette. Would the pain leave him in peace until he reached his destination, BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany? If he could only sleep just this one night! If he could only banish thought for just this one night!

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He took off his coat and laid it under his head, so that he might lie higher, and wrapped himself in his cloak. Before he had felt too hot . . . now he began to shiver. He rose from his seat, drew down the curtains in front of the windows, and switched off the light. Then he laid down again.

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The pains racked him afresh. He drew his cloak over his face.



                        EINAR WEGENER (ANDREAS SPARRE) POSING AS LILI, PARIS,
                        1926
EINAR WEGENEREinar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter; married to Gerda Wegener; died as Lili Elbe in Dresden, 1931 (ANDREAS SPARREAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter) POSING AS LILILili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, PARISParis (historical), capital of France, 1926

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Then he fell asleep, and slept for several hours.

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"HanoverHanover (historical), also spelled Hannover, city in Germany! . . . HanoverHanover (historical), also spelled Hannover, city in Germany!" the porters were shouting, And then again, a long way off: "HanoverHanover (historical), also spelled Hannover, city in Germany!"

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The sound of hammers was heard tapping the wheels, coming nearer and nearer. Doors were flung open and slammed.

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A shrill whistle blew and slowly the train moved off again.

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter was half leaning, half lying on the seat in a drowsy state. Suddenly he jumped to his feet. The door of his carriage was flung open. The drawn curtains were pushed aside.

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A ladybride (fictional), no known historical model was standing in front of the door. Her silhouette was sharply defined against the light in the corridor.

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The darkness in his compartment seemed for a moment to intimidate her. But only for a moment. Then she threw a small trunk upon the rack and sank wearily into the nearest empty corner seat, next to the door leading to the corridor.

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter switched on the light again.

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He suppressed his ill-humour at being thus suddenly jerked out of his solitude. "The train will not stop again until it reaches BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany," he thought, "and so there is no hope of being alone again." Should he move into the adjoining compartment? Perhaps it was empty. But he immediately rejected the idea. He could not hurt the lady's feelings by appearing discourteous.

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He sat up straight in his seat, and observed his companion without her noticing it.

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What struck him was the expression of her eyes. She did not seem to be seeing him at all; she did
[Page 42]
not seem to be aware that she was sharing the tiny compartment with a man.

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He looked in front of him. He stared at his fingers. But his eyes were soon fixed on her again, and he noted with astonishment that she was weeping.

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The tears were starting from her eyes. She must have seen that he was looking at her; but in spite of this she did not make the least attempt to hide her weeping or dry her tears.

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She was obviously quite young. Plaits of fair hair framed a smooth, narrow, girlish forehead. Her eyes, dimmed with tears, were bright blue and at other times could sparkle with gaiety. She had removed her gloves. He noticed a plain ring on a finger of her left hand. She was a bride, then.

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Profound sympathy stirred in him.

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"Mademoiselle . . ." he began.

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She did not seem to hear him. Probably he had spoken too softly, or the roar of the train had drowned his words.

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Then it occurred to him that he was now in GermanyGermany is a western European country whose capital is Berlin..

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"Gnädiges Fräulein . . ." he repeated, almost embarrassed.

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She raised her weeping eyes. "What an enchanting bride!" thought AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter.

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"I should like so much to help you," he said. "You seem to be in great trouble. . . ."

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He could get no further. She covered her face with her hands and wept as if her heart would break. Then, between her sobs, she handed him a folded newspaper, which she had been hugging the whole time. Only then did AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter notice it. He
[Page 43]
took the paper, but did not know what to do with it. He rose from his seat and sat beside the weeping girl and stroked her hand. She became calmer.

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It appeared that her husband, a well-known musicianPianist XX (fictional), no known historical model, had gone to BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany two days before in order to give a concert in that city. This very evening he had been expected to return. On the way to the station to meet him, she had chanced to buy a newspaper, the newspaper which AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter was now holding in his hand, and in it she had read . . .

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She pointed to the place on the front page and wept again.

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter read:

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The young pianist XX of HanoverPianist XX (fictional), no known historical model, who gave a successful concert yesterday evening in the XX hall, met with an accident on the way to his hotel, his taxi-cab colliding with a tramcar. He is now lying in hospital with very serious injuries. His condition gives rise to the gravest anxiety.

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter was shocked when he read the report. He had offered his help to the unhappy bridebride (fictional), no known historical model. Now he felt like an idle chatterer.

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And yet, little as he had ever been able to help himself, in the case of others he had frequently been able to alleviate pain by means of a mystic force which appeared to dwell in him. How often had not GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques assured him of this?

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The young lady's feverish hands were now lying in his. He clasped them tightly for a long time. At first she quivered like a captive bird. Then the quivering grew less and less. He did not utter a word; he merely stroked very softly the limp, girlish hands. She too was silent. He could hear her
[Page 44]
gentle breathing, and then her breathing became more and more regular. Her head sank on his shoulder, and she fell asleep. Now her heart was beating softly against his hand, which he had been obliged to place around her to afford her support.

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And he smiled happily at the thought that something of that hidden enigmatic force was still left in him to-day.

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More than once he tried to move; but each time his companion trembled like a sick child, whimpering in slumber. He therefore remained sitting in a rigid position. And gradually the roar of the train rocked him lightly to sleep also.

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It was not long before he awoke, and the thought of his position forced a smile to his lips.

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Here he was now sitting, he, Andreas SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, of CopenhagenCopenhagen (historical), capital of Denmark, whom life had drifted to ParisParis (historical), capital of France, and who was now being driven northward by a fantastic destiny, overwhelmed with his own grief and needing help and assistance if ever a person did, and chance had selected just him to give consolation to a perfect stranger, to help her over a dark hour of her existence— perhaps her darkest hour. And here was this little German ladybride (fictional), no known historical model, the wife of an unknown manPianist XX (fictional), no known historical model, lying in his arms. And she and he, each of them, were journeying, guided by by some blind providence, towards their own fates . . . somewhere in GermanyGermany is a western European country whose capital is Berlin..

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These were the thoughts that kept running through his mind.

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And then a few secret tears splashed down his cheeks, and it suddenly dawned upon him why all this had so happened. This charming creature from Hanoverbride (fictional), no known historical model, who was now slumbering
[Page 45]
in his arms like a blissfully confiding child, had been sent him as the last woman towards whom he could act as a protective male—before parting for ever from woman, from the eternal-feminine.

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So his thoughts assumed these vague shapes, while on the other side of the window a foggy morning was dawning, and the train was rushing through the sea of houses which constituted BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany.

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He realized that he must awaken his travelling companion.

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With a shriek of anguish she started out of her sleep, and gazed at him in utter perplexity. "Oh, he can't be dead!" Her words again dissolved in tears.

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"Child," he said, speaking in a soft and confident voice, "child, I do not know your name, and you do not know mine, but please believe me when I say that I know he is alive."

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She seized both his hands and covered them with kisses.

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"Yes, indeed," he assured her, "make your mind quite easy."

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"Oh, I am quite at ease! How you have helped me! I shall never forget what you have done."

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A few minutes later she was lost in the crowd of people on the platform. AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter gazed after her for a long time. The newspaper which she had given him during the night was the only memento which he retained.

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A few days later AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter happened to read in a newspaper that the husband of his unknown travelling companionPianist XX (fictional), no known historical model was on the road to recovery.

Page 46

V

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In the company of a porter AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter walked the short distance from the station to the hotel.

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"How devilish cold it is here in BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany, although it is the first of March!" he confided in a tone of surprise to the man who was carrying his two trunks. "In ParisParis (historical), capital of France it is already spring."

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"Yes, in ParisParis (historical), capital of France," replied the honest fellow, "in ParisParis (historical), capital of France." And this ended the conversation.

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter turned up his collar. His teeth were really chattering. He was exhausted after passing an almost sleepless night and plunging into the midst of a strange world. But the unexpected coldness of the temperature kept his senses fully alert.

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Suddenly, before he reached the neighbouring hotel, the thought struck him: "These two trunks contain my very last articles of clothing, shirts, collars. . . . How absurd!"

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A feeling of defiance welled up in him, as if the man were at bay, the man within him.

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In the hotel, where the manager had been advised of his arrival, he was treated with exquisite courtesy. He immediately inquired whether Professor KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist, who was in the habit of staying in this hotel almost every week-end, had perchance already arrived. He was disappointed to learn that this was not so, nor had any letter been left for him with the porter.

Page 47
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A few minutes later he went to his room. He took a warm bath, and by the time he had breakfasted all his troubles were forgotten.

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Elena's woman friendBaronin Schildt (fictional), modeled on Marie-Anne von Goldschmidt-Rothschild (née Friedländer-Fuld, 1892-1973), known as Baroness Rotschildt; a friend of Kurt Warnekros, the sender of the fateful telegram which had prompted his journey to BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany, soon rang him up.

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"Welcome to BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany," her voice sounded over the telephone. AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter immediately recognized the voice of Baroness SchildtBaronin Schildt (fictional), modeled on Marie-Anne von Goldschmidt-Rothschild (née Friedländer-Fuld, 1892-1973), known as Baroness Rotschildt; a friend of Kurt Warnekros, whom he had met in ParisParis (historical), capital of France on a number of occasions with GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and their two friends.

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"We have everything ready. And so that no time may be lost, some specialists whom Werner KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist has been consulting will be getting into touch with you, probably to-day or to-morrow."

a1c05p012

Some minutes later, Professor ArnsProfessor Arns (fictional), also Arno; possibly modeled on Arthur Weil, who invented a bold test and worked at Magnus Hirschfeld’s Institute in Berlin, a doctor whom he had never heard of before, made an appointment with him for twelve o'clock.

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And scarcely had this visit been arranged than the telephone rang again. Niels HvideNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938, an old CopenhagenCopenhagen (historical), capital of Denmark friend, a lawyer and a poet at the same time, who had been living in BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany for years, called him up.

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"Hullo, AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter."

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"How do you know that—"

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"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator sent me a long telegram yesterday, and early this morning an express letter from her followed. The letter has therefore been racing you. You must come and see us at once. IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 and I will keep the morning coffee hot until you arrive."

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An address and directions were hastily written down. A few minutes afterwards AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter was on his way, and half an hour later he was in his friend's house.

Page 48
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A splendid fellow, this NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938—a blond giant from North JutlandNorth Jutland (historical), Jutand is a region of Denmark. We had to distinguish North Jutland from Jutland because in some languages North Jutland is one word and can signify a specific identity., where his family were old landed proprietors.

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IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938, his wife, was the type of the modern cultivated woman. Henna-red hair contrasted piquantly with her large blue eyes. Both were globe-trotters. GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter had often undertaken long journeys with them together. Intimate as they had all been with one another, however, NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 and his wife had hitherto been unaware of AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter' secret.

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He was received most cordially. They had breakfast and spoke about indifferent subjects as long as IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 was in the room. Then NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 blurted out:

a1c05p021

"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator has told me something which I can't quite understand in this letter which came early this morning. You can, of course, read it."

a1c05p022

AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter retorted. "No; the letter is addressed to you."

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On the walls of the room hung a few pictures, painted by GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and by AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter. Involuntarily AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter looked up at them. The first picture, painted by GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, was—LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931.

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"Yes," said NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 delicately, "now I understand a good deal of what used to seem like a fantastic idea about you both—seeing you crop up so often as a female model in GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator's pictures."

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A brief silence followed this remark.

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"Well, old fellow," resumed NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938, "some hints which GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator let fall about you a year ago in ParisParis (historical), capital of France showed me then that your life appeared to be taking a strange turn. Whether the change that is now in store for you is a happy or a disastrous
[Page 49]
one, you can be assured of this—that you have entrusted your fate here to the best and most conscientious hands. Everything now depends upon whether you will have the strength to go through with it. You seem tired. But"—and NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 laughed merrily—"it really is a most extraordinary thing for a man to be faced with the choice of whether he will survive in this world of multiplying sensations as AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, or"—and then he pointed to the picture—"as LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931."

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter looked hard at his friend. "Faced with the choice, you say. . . . No, I do not think it is a question of that, but of something much more serious, of life or death, in fact; for believe me, the man you are talking to is condemned to death. And now the question is, whether that being there"—and he pointed to the portrait—"can be summoned into existence and take up the battle of life."

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NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 now spoke very seriously. "Yes, and what seems to be the most important thing at the moment is that you should be perfectly clear in your own mind how this strange, fantastic change which you have been undergoing from childhood until now—that is, during a normal human life—has been proceeding; in what gradual manner, therefore, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 has been gaining the upper hand over AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter."

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"That is so," replied AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, looking at his watch; "but now I must be off to my first arbiter of life and death, to Professor ArnsProfessor Arns (fictional), also Arno; possibly modeled on Arthur Weil, who invented a bold test and worked at Magnus Hirschfeld’s Institute in Berlin. And when I have finished with him I must probably go further . . . through the whole round."

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"Agreed," laughed NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 jovially; "and when
[Page 50]
you have finished your lesson you will come again to us. And now, neck or nothing!"

. . . . .

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Professor ArnsProfessor Arns (fictional), also Arno; possibly modeled on Arthur Weil, who invented a bold test and worked at Magnus Hirschfeld’s Institute in Berlin, the inventor of a new method of blood-testing, received AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter in a very considerate manner. He put a series of questions which, although of a delicate nature, were answered by AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter without the least hesitation.

a1c05p032

During the long and elaborate examinations— (the main thing was to determine the vital condition of LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 in AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter by an analysis of his blood)—AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter exerted all his will-power to exclude thought. The doctor conducted him from the study into a comfortably furnished room. "If you would like to smoke, please do so," he said. After chatting for a short time about unimportant things, Professor ArnsProfessor Arns (fictional), also Arno; possibly modeled on Arthur Weil, who invented a bold test and worked at Magnus Hirschfeld’s Institute in Berlin intimated to his patient that he must now submit himself for a special examination by his friend Dr. HardenfeldProfessor Hardenfeld (fictional), modeled on Magnus Hirschfeld (1868–1935), a German physician and one of the most influential sexologists of the time; Einar Wegener was examined at his Institute in March 1930, the sexual psychologist. "My colleague HardenfeldProfessor Hardenfeld (fictional), modeled on Magnus Hirschfeld (1868–1935), a German physician and one of the most influential sexologists of the time; Einar Wegener was examined at his Institute in March 1930 has had so much experience in the more 'emotional' sphere—whatever we may think of this from the scientific standpoint—that I, at any rate, cannot ignore his opinion in what may so specially affect your person. When they have dismissed you there, you will have to go to Dr. KarnerDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown, another colleague. He and I, in fact, have to determine the hormone content of your blood, while colleague HardenfeldProfessor Hardenfeld (fictional), modeled on Magnus Hirschfeld (1868–1935), a German physician and one of the most influential sexologists of the time; Einar Wegener was examined at his Institute in March 1930 has to pronounce a purely psychological opinion upon you and the person in you whom you call LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931. In any case I shall be glad if you will call on me again to-morrow morning. The result of these various 'tests' to which we have to subject you
[Page 51]
will then be forwarded to your protector, Professor KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist."

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"Your protector." . . . These words made AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter' heart beat faster, and when, shortly afterwards, he was sitting in a waiting-room of the spacious Institute for PsychiatryInstitute for Psychiatry (fictional), modeled on the Institut Für Sexualwissenschaft (Institute for Sexual Science) in Berlin, founded by Magnus Hirschfeld in 1919; Einar Wegener was initially examined there, he was obliged to keep repeating these two words to himself—otherwise all his courage would have oozed away. "Why have I been sent here?" he wondered. "What have I to do here?" He felt intensely uncomfortable. In this large room a group of abnormal persons seemed to be holding a meeting—women who appeared to be dressed up as men, and men of whom one could scarcely believe that they were men. The manner in which they were conversing disgusted him; their movements, their voices, the way in which they were attired, produced a feeling of nausea.

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At length Dr. HardenfeldProfessor Hardenfeld (fictional), modeled on Magnus Hirschfeld (1868–1935), a German physician and one of the most influential sexologists of the time; Einar Wegener was examined at his Institute in March 1930 appeared and ushered him into his consulting-room. By means of a thousand penetrating questions, this man explored the patient's emotional life for hours. AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter had to submit to an inquisition of the most ruthless kind. The shame of shamelessness is something that actually exists, he thought, during these hours, and clung to this definition, which he had once found in some philosophical work, in an effort to banish the feeling he had of standing there as if in the pillory. His emotional life was undergoing an ordeal which resembled running the gauntlet.

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And when this torture came at last to an end, the inquisitor dismissed him with the words: "I shall expect you to-morrow morning at the same time."

Page 52
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Then it was Dr. KarnerDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown's turn. AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter had by now acquired a sort of routine in answering the questions put to him. This examination took the form of a conversation throughout. Before AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter was aware of it, he found himself in the midst of a real "masculine conversation", its theme being the political relations between FranceFrance is a western European country whose capital is Paris. and GermanyGermany is a western European country whose capital is Berlin.. And thus, quite incidentally, the doctor introduced a long, fine syringe into AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter' arm, in order to take a blood test.

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Dr. KarnerDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown also dismissed him with the words: "And I will see you again in the morning."

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Exhausted by his ordeal, AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter at length made his way to NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 and Inger HvideInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 in the evening.

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"No," he exclaimed, "don't ask me anything now. I am not fit to answer questions. Let us rather take a good walk through your Babylon on the SpreeBerlin (historical), capital of Germany round the KurfürstendammKurfuürstendamm (historical), an upscale avenue in Berlin whose cafés and theaters were the center of Berlin’s cultural scene in the 1920s. Its Jewish-owned shops were targeted during Kristallnacht in 1938.. I must see men, healthy men."

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IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 had a previous engagement for the evening; but NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 accepted his friend's proposal with alacrity.

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They proceeded first to a Russian restaurant, where they enjoyed a supper of many courses, washed down with several glasses of vodka. Then they sampled German, French, Hungarian, and Spanish wines in bars and cafés of the most various kind. To the surprise of them both, AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter proved a good tippling comrade this evening.

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"Your health, AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter!" said NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938, who had again remarked his friend's astonishing drinking capacity. "You are really a strange fellow. This evening you are behaving just like a rake—and to-morrow you will perhaps be insisting that henceforth I must treat you like a lady. When I look at you
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I can hardly believe that there is not something wonderful about it all. But perhaps from the very beginning not only have two souls dwelt within your breast in the sense of GoetheGoethe (historical), Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749-1832), German writer and diplomat, but two beings, two whole beings. . . . I hardly know how to express myself."

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter regarded him calmly. "I know what you are trying to get at. It is difficult to make head or tail of this change, difficult for me, but much more difficult for others. And the strangest thing of all, believe me, is that each of the beings within me is healthy and perfectly normal in its emotional life."

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"And it is just that which is perhaps the abnormal and incredible thing about your case," declared Neils. "I have known you for years, I mean"—and then he laughed slightly—"as AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, for you have been silent about LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 to us friends. And as a man you have always seemed to me unquestionably healthy. I have, indeed, seen with my own eyes that you attract women, and that is the clearest proof that you are a genuine fellow." He paused, and then placed his hand on AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter' shoulder. "You won't take it amiss if I ask you a frank question?"

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter stared at him. "NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938, if you knew what kind of questions I have had to answer to-day you would not behave so solemnly about the matter."

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"Well, then, AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, have you at any time been interested in your own kind? You know what I mean."

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter shook his head calmly. "My word on it, NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938; never in my life. And I can add that
[Page 54]
those kind of creatures have never shown any interest in me."

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"Good, AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter! That's just what I thought."

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"I will honestly and plainly confess to you, NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938, that I have always been attracted to women. And to-day as much as ever. A most banal confession!"

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NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 raised his glass. "And now we will drink to the future. Let come what may! Go right through with it! If you had lived in the time of the old Greeks, perhaps they would have made you a demi-god. In the Middle Ages they would have burnt you, for miracles were then forbidden. But to-day doctors are, at any rate, permitted to accomplish something like a miracle. Thus we will drink to the day that is coming."

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They drank the toast.

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NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 accompanied his friend to his hotel. When AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter found himself alone in his room, his physical and bodily torments overwhelmed him, and he collapsed.

. . . . .

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By the next morning AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter had recovered his equilibrium, outwardly at least.

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Punctual to the minute he called on Professor ArnsProfessor Arns (fictional), also Arno; possibly modeled on Arthur Weil, who invented a bold test and worked at Magnus Hirschfeld’s Institute in Berlin.

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"Since I saw you yesterday I have been talking to Professor KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist. We are both agreed that a young colleague here, a surgeon of reputeProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930, ought to treat you first. When that is over, there will no longer be any obstacle to your reception in the Professor's clinicMunicipal Women’s Clinic (fictional), modeled on Staatliche Frauenklinik in Dresden, directed by Professor Kurt Warnekros at the time. That means, it is not you who will be received there."

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"Not I?"

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"KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist runs a women's clinic. Your case"— the ProfessorProfessor Arns (fictional), also Arno; possibly modeled on Arthur Weil, who invented a bold test and worked at Magnus Hirschfeld’s Institute in Berlin then laughed a little—"is somewhat unusual, even for us doctors. This means, therefore, that when the surgeonProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930 here dismisses you,. you will be no longer Andreas SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, but—"

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"LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931!"

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"Just so! HardenfeldProfessor Hardenfeld (fictional), modeled on Magnus Hirschfeld (1868–1935), a German physician and one of the most influential sexologists of the time; Einar Wegener was examined at his Institute in March 1930 has told me that he too regards the masculine element in you as by far the least considerable part of your being, which, in his opinion from the emotional standpoint, reveals between eighty and one hundred per cent of feminine characteristics. The examination of your blood has yielded a similar result. I will, of course, be present at the operation which we shall perform on you here in BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany. Before this happens we will take a few photographs of you, for scientific reasons. Dr. HardenfeldProfessor Hardenfeld (fictional), modeled on Magnus Hirschfeld (1868–1935), a German physician and one of the most influential sexologists of the time; Einar Wegener was examined at his Institute in March 1930 is now expecting you. To-morrow morning, then, you will go into the surgeon's nursing-homeGebhard’s sanitorium (fictional), possibly modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt’s private clinic at Augsburger Str. 66, Berlin." Saying which, Professor ArnsProfessor Arns (fictional), also Arno; possibly modeled on Arthur Weil, who invented a bold test and worked at Magnus Hirschfeld’s Institute in Berlin gave AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter the exact address of the nursing-homeGebhard’s sanitorium (fictional), possibly modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt’s private clinic at Augsburger Str. 66, Berlin.

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VI.

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Late that evening AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter was again sitting with NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 and IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938.

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After the three of them had finished dinner, during which husband and wife had intentionally avoided putting questions to AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter as to the outcome of the various medical examinations, AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter lit a cigarette, rose to his feet, and extinguished all superfluous lights, leaving only a solitary electric candle, suspended in an alcove, to cast a feeble light.

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He sat down in a convenient armchair, and without any introduction began in a free and easy style.

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"Yesterday evening, NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938, I pondered very deeply over your words."

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"Over my words?"

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"Yes; as you said, the most important thing at the moment is for me to be perfectly clear in my own mind—I am using your own words—how this strange, fantastic change which I have been undergoing from my childhood onwards has been taking place—"

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"And how LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 has gradually gained the upper hand over you," said NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938, finishing the sentence.

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"Well, then. I did ponder over this last night; especially as it is by no means unlikely that the present night will be the last night of—"

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"Nonsense!" interrupted IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938.

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"Let it pass, IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938," interposed NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938. "I know what AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter means."

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter laughed. "However that may be, IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938, it is my farewell night. And in order that you may perfectly understand this, and supposing that you both have as much patience as I have, I propose relating in detail how all this has happened. . . . I have made a few notes, so as not to lose the thread of my story. Who knows what the morrow will bring—whether I shall be still I, or whether I, obliterated to a certain extent as AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, the person who is now sitting in front of you, will start losing all memory of myself, in order to make room for another person."

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NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 rose to his feet, paced up and down a few times, and then remained standing in front of AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter. He too had now become serious.

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"I thought it would be something like that. And as you know me to be a level-headed person, who mostly takes things as he finds them—that is, without letting his feelings run away with him— incidentally I have not yet forgotten the shorthand of my student days—I should like to suggest, if I am not hurting your feelings, that you let me take down in shorthand the curriculum vitae which you are about to relate. . ." He broke into a laugh in which AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter joined and then IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938.

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"An excellent opportunity," exclaimed AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, amused. "Your reporting will not affect me in any way whatever. On the contrary!"

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"Then fire away!" With these words NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 settled himself in an armchair, and produced a pencil and notebook. IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 reclined on the sofa and smoked her cigarette.

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"I will tell you the story of my life, like an accurate chronicler," began AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, "so let it commence with my parents, whom you have both met. If I should grow tedious now and then, or too introspective—"

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"I will run my blue pencil through it afterwards, as your TacitusTacitus (d. 117 AD), a senator and a historian of the Roman Empire." NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 completed the sentence.

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"FatherFather (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s father, Vilhelm Wegener's ancestors came from MallorcaMallorca (historical), a Spanish island to JutlandJutland (historical), the largest region of Denmark. From him I have my dark eyes. He was not a man of bracing character, but rather effeminate, much concerned with himself and his own comfort. MotherMother (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s mother, Ane Marie Wegener (née Thomsen), on the other hand, was a hale woman, with healthy nerves, a Nordic blonde type, perhaps even somewhat hard in her temperament, an efficient housewife and a good mother. She died before FatherFather (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s father, Vilhelm Wegener, quite suddenly. FatherFather (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s father, Vilhelm Wegener was inconsolable. Their marriage had survived many storms. After MotherMother (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s mother, Ane Marie Wegener (née Thomsen)'s death he revered her like a saint.

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"She had four children, three sons and one daughter; I being the youngest.

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"I was a very happy child. Everybody pampered me, even my brothersBrothers (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s brothers, Holger (b. 1880) and Henrik and sisterSister (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s sister, Christiane Thomsen (1881–1954). I was a great epicure, and could eat nothing but my favourite dishes. From my fatherFather (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s father, Vilhelm Wegener I never heard a harsh word in all my life. Whenever a slap was necessary, it was administered by MotherMother (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s mother, Ane Marie Wegener (née Thomsen). For the rest, she vied with FatherFather (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s father, Vilhelm Wegener in spoiling me, as all youngsters are doubtless spoiled. MotherMother (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s mother, Ane Marie Wegener (née Thomsen) loved to dress me up. I was never clad finely enough for her. Sometimes I was not allowed to romp about with my playmates on account of my 'best clothes', and this was the greatest distress I had to endure.
[Page 59]
As a little chap I had long, fair locks, snow-white skin, and dark eyes, so that strangers often took me for a girl. In a kindergarten, where, as the only boy, I played with eleven girls, I was the cleverest of all the children in knitting and embroidery. As a five-year-old, at the annual prize-giving of our kindergarten I received my first mark of public distinction for fancy-work.

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"As an eight-year-old my two brothersBrothers (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s brothers, Holger (b. 1880) and Henrik often bantered me on account of my 'girl's voice'. I took this very much to heart, and thereafter made great efforts to acquire a proper youthful bass.

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"Looking back on things now, it seems as if my childish voice was my first dissimulation.

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"In other respects my childhood was nothing but sunshine. With my brothersBrothers (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s brothers, Holger (b. 1880) and Henrik I played with tin soldiers, with my sisterSister (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s sister, Christiane Thomsen (1881–1954) with dolls. No one saw anything strange in the fact that I was fond of pushing my sisterSister (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s sister, Christiane Thomsen (1881–1954)'s toy perambulator, as many brothers who have sisters do this.

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"At nine years of age I went to the same grammar school as my brothersBrothers (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s brothers, Holger (b. 1880) and Henrik. None of us was a model pupil. My favourite subjects were French and Latin, but I was also one of the most assiduous users of the school library, which gave me a high place in our headmaster's opinion. Nevertheless, I was usually the last but one in the class. The old man himself taught us French. He spoke the language correctly, with an excellent accent. Once during the summer holidays he went to ParisParis (historical), capital of France, and afterwards he told us wrathfully that he did not think much of the Parisians, as they neither understood him nor he understood them, ending his anecdote with the words: 'And
[Page 60]
now you know, boys, that I can speak French." He was a droll chap.

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"Of a different stamp was my Latin teacher. He was a most enlightened man, who not only taught us Latin grammar, but took great pains to familiarize us with the intellectual atmosphere of antiquity and the art of the ancients. He it was who first opened my eyes to the flawless beauty of Greek sculpture. It was only a vague and remote comprehension. But I can remember as if it were yesterday, when bathing with boys of my own age I would often blush at seeing my own somewhat slim and delicate youthful body reflected in the water beside the sturdy and not particularly well-proportioned youthful bodies of the others. I was really built on much more delicate and flexible lines than were my comrades. Then I would think of the youthful figures of PraxitelesPraxiteles (395-330 BC), an Athenian sculptor, about which the Latin master had been telling us a few days before. In the art-room we had also a few plaster casts.

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"This reminds me of a little scene. At that time a number of girls were attending our school. One of them attended the same classes as I. Once —during the interval—she put her hat on my head for fun. 'Doesn't he look like a proper girl?' she cried, and my comrades laughed with me. Suddenly our Latin master stood in front of us. I was too frightened to take off the girl's hat in time, and before I knew what was happening I had received a sound thrashing. I was then in a perfect rage, and did not realize until many years later why my old teacher had then felt it his duty to punish me. We poor humans . . . what do we
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know about ourselves . . . how much less about our neighbours?

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"For the rest I was an ordinary boy. I was in the thick of all fights. Just because I was more delicate than my companions I deliberately displayed special daring. Many bruises were the result of this ambition.

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"Incidentally I went on long walks with my sisterSister (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s sister, Christiane Thomsen (1881–1954). And when I knew that no one was likely to see me—as in the wood close to the town—I pushed her doll's pram, which always accompanied us.

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"In adolescence my interest in art constantly increased. When I was seventeen I began to read art periodicals and to visit art exhibitions. My fatherFather (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s father, Vilhelm Wegener, who, being an old merchant, thought little of an artist's career for me, tried several times to divert my life into a 'practical direction'. Thus he apprenticed me first to a merchant and then to a master painter, without achieving anything except to intensify still more my desire to follow an artistic career.

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"At the same time, like every adolescent, I had my 'flame'; indeed, to be honest, I must even speak of 'flames'.

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"When my fatherFather (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s father, Vilhelm Wegener at length realized that it was hopeless to try to interest me in anything 'practical', I was sent at nineteen years of age to an art academy at CopenhagenArt Academy (fictional), modeled on The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts (Det Kongelige Danske Kunstakademi) in Copenhagen, where Einar and Gerda Wegener studied and met. Here a number of good comrades took me under their wing and took care that I very quickly lost my provincial simplicity and embarrassment and that I also lost my innocence in a thoroughly brutal fashion. Then I met GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator.

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"It was love at first sight.

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"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator had just come to the art academyArt Academy (fictional), modeled on The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts (Det Kongelige Danske Kunstakademi) in Copenhagen, where Einar and Gerda Wegener studied and met. She too was from the provinces. We immediately became inseparable. We attended all the evening lectures together. The ordinary teaching in the academyArt Academy (fictional), modeled on The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts (Det Kongelige Danske Kunstakademi) in Copenhagen, where Einar and Gerda Wegener studied and met was at that time so arranged as to divide the sexes.

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"A friend had brought us together.

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"When he learned one day that we were engaged, he became perfectly furious with jealousy, not really on account of GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, but, and this I only learned many years later, on account of me. But even such a symptom as this is really nothing extraordinary. How many friends have not had similar experiences when a woman has come between them! A year after our first meeting GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and I were married. We were still very young—I barely twenty, GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator two or three years younger. What did we know of life, of people? We were indescribably happy in each other's society.

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"I recollect one evening in the first years of our marriage—we were then living in a studio which commanded a wide view over Copenhagen—GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator was reading to me a primitive fable out of antiquity. It ran somewhat like this: 'HermesHermes (fictional), in Greek mythology, son of Zeus and messenger of the gods, the darling of the gods, had a son, and AphroditeAphrodites (fictional), in Greek mythology, the goddess of love and beauty proclaimed by Homer to be the daughter of Zeus, the divine beauty, a daughter. The two children were perfect models of beauty. Yet they had never seen each other before when one day they confronted each other in the Wood of the Gods. The girl was immediately enamoured of the boy; but the boy fled from her. However fast she ran after him, he ran faster still. In despair the divine
[Page 63]
maiden turned to ZeusZeus (fictional), in Greek mythology, the king of the gods and bewailed to him her love torment. "I love him, father, but he has fled from me. He will have nothing to do with me. Oh, father, grant that I become one with him." And ZeusZeus (fictional), in Greek mythology, the king of the gods heard the prayer of the divine child, and he raised his arm, and the next moment the shy son of HermesHermes (fictional), in Greek mythology, son of Zeus and messenger of the gods stood before the Olympian, and AphroditeAphrodites (fictional), in Greek mythology, the goddess of love and beauty proclaimed by Homer to be the daughter of Zeus's daughter shouted with glee, embraced the trembling youngster—and again ZeusZeus (fictional), in Greek mythology, the king of the gods raised his arm—both melted into each other. When HermesHermes (fictional), in Greek mythology, son of Zeus and messenger of the gods and AphroditeAphrodites (fictional), in Greek mythology, the goddess of love and beauty proclaimed by Homer to be the daughter of Zeus sought after their children, they found a blissfully smiling divine child. "It is my son!" cried HermesHermes (fictional), in Greek mythology, son of Zeus and messenger of the gods. "No, it is my daughter!" cried AphroditeAphrodites (fictional), in Greek mythology, the goddess of love and beauty proclaimed by Homer to be the daughter of Zeus. They were both right.

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"'You know,' said GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator to me, 'I love you so much that I should like you and me to be one being.'

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"About this time GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator painted the portrait of the then popular actress in CopenhagenCopenhagen (historical), capital of Denmark, Anna LarsenAnna Larsen (fictional), modeled on Anna Larssen, a Danish actress, friend of the Wegeners. One day AnnaAnna Larsen (fictional), modeled on Anna Larssen, a Danish actress, friend of the Wegeners was unable to attend the appointed sitting. On the telephone she asked GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, who was somewhat vexed: 'Cannot AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter pose as a model for the lower part of the picture? His legs and feet are as pretty as mine.'

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"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator laughed. Anna LarsenAnna Larsen (fictional), modeled on Anna Larssen, a Danish actress, friend of the Wegeners was aware that once, when GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator was painting a picture of a woman, I had been obliged to come to her assistance with my legs. But it had really only been a question of drapery. 'You really have very pretty woman's legs,' GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator had said to me jokingly.

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"While GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator was talking to Anna LarsenAnna Larsen (fictional), modeled on Anna Larssen, a Danish actress, friend of the Wegeners on the telephone, I had been busy cleaning my palette. I was smoking a cigarette and scarcely
[Page 64]
listened when GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator informed me of Anna LarsenAnna Larsen (fictional), modeled on Anna Larssen, a Danish actress, friend of the Wegeners's proposal. At first I declined rather shortly. GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator chaffed me, abused me, implored me, petted me, and a few minutes later I was standing in the studio in costume and high-heeled shoes. We both laughed as though it were a great joke. And to make the disguise complete, GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator fetched out a carnival wig from the depths of a trunk, a fair, very curly wig, and drew it over my head. Then she attacked me with rouge and powder, while I submitted patiently to everything.

a1c06p041

"When all was ready we could scarcely believe our eyes. I turned round and stared at myself in a mirror again and again, trying to recognize myself. Was it really possible, I asked myself, that I could be so good-looking? GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator clapped her hands delightedly. 'The most perfect ladies' model,' she cried again and again. 'You look just as if you had never worn anything but women's clothes in your life.'

a1c06p042

"And I cannot deny, strange though it may sound, that I enjoyed myself in this disguise. I liked the feel of soft women's clothing; indeed, I seemed to take them as a matter of course. I felt at home in them from the first moment. GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator began to paint.

a1c06p043

"Then a bell rang in the corridor, and a moment later Anna LarsenAnna Larsen (fictional), modeled on Anna Larssen, a Danish actress, friend of the Wegeners rustled into the studio. She had managed to find time.

a1c06p044

"She looked at me, but did not recognize the strange lady in front of her. She only recognized her own clothes. Then she uttered a cry of delight and embraced me violently.

a1c06p045

"'I haven't seen anything so amusing for a long

                            EINAR WEGENER (ANDREAS SPARRE) AT THE TIME HE BEGAN TO
                            ASSUME THE NAME OF LILI, AND HER FRIEND
                                CLAUDE, BEAUGENCY, FRANCE, 1928 (BEFORE THE OPERATION)
EINAR WEGENEREinar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter; married to Gerda Wegener; died as Lili Elbe in Dresden, 1931 (ANDREAS SPARREAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter) AT THE TIME HE BEGAN TO ASSUME THE NAME OF LILILili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, AND HER FRIEND CLAUDEClaude Prévost (historical), friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923, BEAUGENCYBeaugency (historical), a town on the Loire river in southern France, FRANCEFrance is a western European country whose capital is Paris., 1928 (BEFORE THE OPERATION)


[Page 65]
time,' she declared, and applauded my appearance. She peeped at me from every angle. I had to turn about and assume every possible position. Finally she asserted that I was very much prettier as a girl than as a man. I wore ladies' clothes very much better than male costume. 'Yes,' she maintained—and I have never forgotten these words, 'you know, AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, you were certainly a girl in a former existence, or else Nature has made a mistake with you this time.'

a1c06p046

"She spoke quite slowly, quite deliberately, and it was obvious that she was strangely stirred.

a1c06p047

"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator gave me a hint to take off the clothes, as Anna LarsenAnna Larsen (fictional), modeled on Anna Larssen, a Danish actress, friend of the Wegeners could now pose herself.

a1c06p048

"I made a movement to retire; but Anna LarsenAnna Larsen (fictional), modeled on Anna Larssen, a Danish actress, friend of the Wegeners held me back. 'No,' she cried, 'I simply could not endure to meet AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter again to-day. We won't even speak of him. Listen, and now I will christen you, my girlie. You shall receive a particularly lovely, musical name. For example, Lili. What do you say to Lili? Henceforth I will call you LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931. And we must celebrate this! What do you say, GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator?'

a1c06p049

"And GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator merely nodded, looked now at AnnaAnna Larsen (fictional), modeled on Anna Larssen, a Danish actress, friend of the Wegeners, now at the child about to be christened; and then the three of us kept up rejoicings until far into the night—LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's christening night.

a1c06p050

"So LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 came into existence, and the name stuck; nor was it merely a question of the name.

a1c06p051

"With an extravagant joke, a genuine accident of the studio, if you like, it started, and for many years we played our game with LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931.

a1c06p052

"A few weeks after LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's christening an artists' ball was held. GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator suggested that LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 should go
[Page 66]
in order to be introduced into the larger world, and she designed a pierrette's costume.

a1c06p053

"It was a complete success. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was one of the most popular dancers of the evening. An officer paid her special attentions. Eventually he called her out for every dance, and towards midnight he became somewhat obtrusive. Then LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 tried to disclose her secret. It availed her nothing—the officer simply would not believe her! When she managed to escape, she fell out of the frying-pan into the fire. A fresh cavalier caught hold of her, and would not let her go. On the spot he requested permission to kiss her, at least, on the neck. When at length she escaped from his clutches, the pierrette costume bore some trace of the struggle.

a1c06p054

"Another remarkable fact came to LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's notice during this ball—the attitude of the female sex towards her. Several times she had regarded with a friendly smile such ladies as she found attractive. But most of them had returned her confident look with an icy stare. She was perplexed, and at last inquired of GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator whether she had behaved herself badly, whether she looked impossible. GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator said with a smile, 'Our stupid LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 is very young. She does not yet know the malice and mistrust of women towards other women.'

a1c06p055

"It was the first time that LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was conscious of possessing a separate personality. And out of this amusing incident came something like a presentiment. How often have my thoughts wandered back to that far-off evening!

a1c06p056

"But this evening yielded another experience, which was no less characteristic.

Page 67
a1c06p057

"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 were preparing to return home. In the search for her cloak LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 ran into the arms of a tall painter who belonged to the academyHauwitz (fictional), no known historical model. He was one of my four studio comrades. For heaven's sake, what could I do to prevent the secret from being discovered? LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 behaved as if she had not seen him. He seized her, squeezed her, and pressed half a dozen kisses on her neck. This time I came to LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's assistance. A few well-armed blows caught the insolent fellow right on the face . . . . HauwitzHauwitz (fictional), no known historical model was the man's name.

a1c06p058

"When I entered the class in the academyArt Academy (fictional), modeled on The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts (Det Kongelige Danske Kunstakademi) in Copenhagen, where Einar and Gerda Wegener studied and met the following day, I found the comrades in the thick of a discussion of the carnival night. HauwitzHauwitz (fictional), no known historical model was the most enthusiastic of them all. He recounted his experiences in the grand manner.

a1c06p059

"'But where were you hiding yesterday?' he attacked me at once. The others, too, asked me why I had not been present, especially as GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator had been there.

a1c06p060

"I explained that I had not felt well. Anyhow, I knew that the comrades enjoyed themselves very much, especially HauwitzHauwitz (fictional), no known historical model, who had courted a pierretteLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 very ardently.

a1c06p061

"How did I know that, threw in HauwitzHauwitz (fictional), no known historical model, flattered: a man could not move, it seemed, without giving rise to gossip; who, then, has been so indiscreet as to betray his little adventure?

a1c06p062

"'I know you're a famous heart-breaker,' said I. 'Let's hear all about it.'

a1c06p063

"At first HauwitzHauwitz (fictional), no known historical model refused chivalrously. 'I hope I'm a gentleman. Moreover, the pierretteLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was really a fabulous person.'

a1c06p064

"He simpered and winked at me expectantly.
[Page 68]
The others crowded round him. 'Fire away, HauwitzHauwitz (fictional), no known historical model,' they encouraged him.

a1c06p065

"'No; friend SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter seems to know all about it. Ask him,' he replied meaningly.

a1c06p066

"'But, my dear HauwitzHauwitz (fictional), no known historical model, please do not misunderstand me. I should be the last to give anyone away,' I retorted, inquiring at the same time: 'Was she really so pretty, then?'

a1c06p067

"'You can suppose as much as you like,' broke out HauwitzHauwitz (fictional), no known historical model. 'You cannot go too far in your suppositions. An unheard of thing!'

a1c06p068

"Whereupon he relapsed into silence, which was more eloquent than the coarsest boasting.

a1c06p069

"To my intimate friends I afterwards confessed who the pierretteLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was. HauwitzHauwitz (fictional), no known historical model was only initiated into the secret much later, after he had found further opportunity to pose as CasanovaCasanova (historical), Giacomo Girolamo Casanova (1725-1798), an Italian author and womanizer.

a1c06p070

"This ball was followed by others, at which LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 became accustomed to her rôle with growing success. GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator titivated her each time, so that this strange creature who had suddenly emerged in CopenhagenCopenhagen (historical), capital of Denmark artistic circles began to cause a stir. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 gradually became indispensable to GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator. For, strange as all this may now sound, it was not I who dressed up as LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, but both for me and for GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 very soon became a perfectly independent person, in fact, a playmate for GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, her own playmate and her toy at the same time.

a1c06p071

"LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 and I became two beings. If LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was not there, we spoke of her as of a third person. And when LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was there—that is, when I was not there—I was spoken of between her and GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator as of a third person. And soon our most intimate
[Page 69]
friends learned all this. But it was still a game for many years.

a1c06p072

"In the depths of her soul GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator is utterly melancholy. And to banish such feeling she summoned her playmate LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, was, in fact, carelessness and serenity personified. Gradually LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 became equally important to her mistress in the capacity of a model; indeed—I can say it calmly now—LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 has been GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator's favourite model. Whether it was chance or not, GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator had more and more success with pictures for which LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 posed as model. And she began to see in LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 a kind of mascot, a talisman that brought luck. A large number of GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator's pictures and drawings originated at that time in our first studio in Copenhagen, in which LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 appears as model in a hundred different poses. GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator's artistic fame spread. But nobody knew who was concealed behind the model. Legends sprang up around it. Rumour also began to whisper, without, however, discovering the track of the secret.

a1c06p073

"A well-known writer asserted that the model LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was no creature of flesh and blood at all, but merely a female type, upon which GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator's imagination had fastened, and therefore an empty caprice.

a1c06p074

"Only a few suspected the connection. But nobody knew anything definite about the mystery of LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931—with the exception of Anna LarsenAnna Larsen (fictional), modeled on Anna Larssen, a Danish actress, friend of the Wegeners, who, however, had been sworn to silence. She kept her word.

a1c06p075

"One day GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator received an invitation from ParisParis (historical), capital of France to exhibit her 'LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 sketches'.

a1c06p076

"And so the three of us were transplanted to ParisParis (historical), capital of France: GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, I, and—LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931."

Page 70

VII.

a1c07p001

"Before our removal to ParisParis (historical), capital of France we had already made several journeys abroad.

a1c07p002

Whenever we were able to spare sufficient money from the sale of our pictures—we were extremely frugal in our mode of living—we had travelled South, to study, to paint, and to become acquainted with the world. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 had not been with us upon any of these trips. There were too many new things to see for GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and I to find any time to devote to her. But as soon as we found ourselves again in our native studio, she reappeared—and then we had to acknowledge every time that we had really missed her.

a1c07p003

"We spent almost a whole year in ItalyItaly is a European country whose capital is Rome. without LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931. It was the most carefree year which I ever passed with GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator. The romance of the South was an indescribably splendid revelation to us two children of the North.

a1c07p004

"How could we find time to . . . play? GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator was at that time serenity itself. In ItalyItaly is a European country whose capital is Rome.'s wonderland she never felt oppressed. She needed no distraction. Hence LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was not conjured up by her.

a1c07p005

"And yet LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was probably more than ever closely bound up with us both. Only it was no longer a pastime. About that time I began to undergo a change in myself, the nature of which I did
[Page 71]
not then realize. I first became aware of it through my influence upon others . . . in ItalyItaly is a European country whose capital is Rome. just at that time. In FlorenceFlorence (historical), city in Italy an unfortunate person approached me. He was a wealthy foreigner. One day, after he had been dogging me for weeks, he spoke to me and suggested that I should take up my quarters in his villa, where I could pursue my studies as a painter to my heart's content. I declined politely, but very firmly. After that I saw him frequently. I was always with a lady, either with GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator or in the company of a strikingly beautiful Sicilian. A very little more and I should have been obliged to challenge this poor creature to a duel with pistols.

a1c07p006

"In RomeRome (historical), capital of Italy I had a similar adventure. In that city an American millionaire wanted me to accompany him to EgyptEgypt (historical), a country in northeast Africa whose capital is Cairo.. He pestered not only me, but also GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator. He sailed alone to AlexandriaAlexandria (historical), a city in Egypt.

a1c07p007

"Never before had I been placed in such delicate situations. Why this happened just then in ItalyItaly is a European country whose capital is Rome. I only realized much later. When Professor KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist recently saw in ParisParis (historical), capital of France a number of photographs taken of me during recent years, including some taken on my first Italian trip, he pointed to these very pictures with the words: 'That was when LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 could be distinctly recognized in appearance for the first time.'

a1c07p008

"In due course we returned to ParisParis (historical), capital of France.

a1c07p009

"In the neighborhood of the Ecole des Beaux ArtsEcole des Beaux Arts (historical), École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts, the most famous school of the fine arts in Paris, on the left bank of the SeineBanks of the Seine (historical); a river that runs through Paris, we stayed in one of the numerous small hotelsHôtel D’Alsace (historical), small hotel in Saint Germain, Paris. The landlord and his wife were not attractive, but their charming little daughter was like a ravishing kitten. Their like is only to be found in ParisParis (historical), capital of France.

Page 72
a1c07p010

"Two pleasant rooms, painted bright red and greyish colours, were assigned to us. One of them overlooked an old neglected garden, and had a mysterious alcove, with red-diapered curtains. The factotum of the hotelHôtel D’Alsace (historical), small hotel in Saint Germain, Paris, JeanJean (fictional), no known historical model by name, lost no time in telling us that Oscar WildeOscar Wilde (1854-1900), an Irish-born prominent British playwright and author imprisoned for “gross indecency” (homosexuality) in 1897 had spent his last days in these two rooms. He had died in the alcove with the red-diapered curtains. As JeanJean (fictional), no known historical model was telling us this, the tears ran down his ill-shorn cheeks. He had reason to regret Oscar WildeOscar Wilde (1854-1900), an Irish-born prominent British playwright and author imprisoned for “gross indecency” (homosexuality) in 1897's death. Many a twenty-franc piece had been given him by the unfortunate poet, with which to buy a few sous' worth of cigarettes, and he had never been asked for the change, he added, as a delicate hint to us.

a1c07p011

"For GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and I these two quiet rooms were altogether delightful. We often sat in front of the broad window overlooking the garden and read page after page of the works of the poet, whom I had admired for many years. Gradually GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and I came to know "De Profundis" and "The Ballad of Reading Gaol" by heart. They were lovely evenings.

a1c07p012

"Quite close to the hotelHôtel D’Alsace (historical), small hotel in Saint Germain, Paris we found our favourite café, 'Chateau neuf du PapeChâteau neuf du Pape (fictional), no known historical analogue', where art students mainly foregathered. A very modest little restaurant; but one could dine sumptuously there for one franc thirty. The wine was included in the price. Here we met our first Parisian friends.

a1c07p013

"Shortly afterwards GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator was invited by the editor to contribute to a well-known Parisian illustrated periodical. He had, in fact, seen GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator's pictures and sketches at her first exhibition in ParisParis (historical), capital of France.


 FRENCH LANDSCAPE BY EINAR WEGENER
                            (ANDREAS SPARRE), 1929
FRENCH LANDSCAPE BY EINAR WEGENEREinar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter; married to Gerda Wegener; died as Lili Elbe in Dresden, 1931 (ANDREAS SPARREAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter), 1929

Page 73
a1c07p014

"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator was all on fire to begin her contributions immediately. But what should she offer? How quickly could she hunt up a suitable model?

a1c07p015

"She looked at me inquiringly, hesitated a few moments, and then said: 'What do you think if LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 . . .'

a1c07p016

"I confess that I was at first somewhat surprised. I too had forgotten LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 in the midst of the hubbub of ParisParis (historical), capital of France, just as I had during our first Italian trip. Here in ParisParis (historical), capital of France GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator had hitherto not required the company of LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 either for the purposes of her work or by way of distraction.

a1c07p017

"'Very good,' I said; 'but what shall she put on?'

a1c07p018

"LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's 'outfit' had been left behind in CopenhagenCopenhagen (historical), capital of Denmark. Quite apart from the fact that LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was considerably bigger than the very dainty GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, the strictest separation of property was observed by us with regard to the wardrobe.

a1c07p019

"The most necessary things for LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 were quickly procured. She was not a little proud of her first real Parisian costume.

a1c07p020

"Thus she came to life again in the heart of ParisParis (historical), capital of France. The sketches for which she sat as model were successful. GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator was radiant. She obtained considerable prices for her work and we were able to rent a pleasant studio for ourselves. We settled in ParisParis (historical), capital of France, and built up our circle of friends and acquaintances.

a1c07p021

"I too was now painting a great deal, partly in ParisParis (historical), capital of France, partly in VersaillesVersailles (historical), a royal palace outside Paris, where we passed the warm summer months.

a1c07p022

"A few happy and harmonious years were now in store for GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and me. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 only appeared in
[Page 74]
our midst when GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator urgently needed her as a model. We earned good money, and GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator could hire 'strange models'.

a1c07p023

"When we had put aside sufficient money for an educational tour, we set out again for ItalyItaly is a European country whose capital is Rome.. Our objective was CapriCapri (histoical), island off Italy in the Gulf of Naples. For years we had been longing to become acquainted with this paradise of sunshine.

a1c07p024

"Scarcely had we arrived there than to our great delight we ran up against a painter from FlorenceFlorence (historical), city in Italy whose acquaintance we had made during our first Italian journey. NinoNino (fictional), no known historical model we called him. Henceforth we were inseparable. Within a few days we had more acquaintances among the cosmopolitan artists with whom CapriCapri (histoical), island off Italy in the Gulf of Naples was teeming than was always agreeable. Three or four times a day we met at the 'Morgano'Morgano (fictional), no known historical analogue, and evening after evening we played chess and draughts. It went without saying that we mustered our full strength during bathing-hours on the tiny beach at Piccola Marina.

a1c07p025

"Here we met one day a Scotsman, who always appeared in the company of a very pretty boy. When bathing the boy was transformed, to our astonishment, into a very nice girl.

a1c07p026

"'Just what I expected,' declared a Venetian sculptor who belonged to our clique when this revelation burst upon us. 'I knew it from the start! A girl cannot impersonate a man, neither can a man impersonate a girl. Those who have eyes to see can detect the deception immediately. Some superficial thing always gives the game away.' The man's name was FavioFavio (fictional), no known historical model.

a1c07p027

"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator threw me a saucy look. I understood
[Page 75]
what it meant. At the hour of promenade the next afternoon GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator appeared in the company of a tall, slender young lady whom no one had hitherto seen in CapriCapri (histoical), island off Italy in the Gulf of Naples. They strolled past the 'Morgano'Morgano (fictional), no known historical analogue, where GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator had to return many curious greetings from friends and acquaintances. Suddenly Signora FavioSignora Favio (fictional), wife of Favio, no known historical model, the sculptor's wife, spoke to the two ladies, inquired after me, and expressed the hope that I was not ill, as no one had seen me that day. Would GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and I like to come to a social evening at her villa near Monte Tiberio?

a1c07p028

"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator regretted that AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter had been obliged to go to NaplesNaples (historical), city in Italy to attend to some important business, and he would not be back until early the following morning.

a1c07p029

"Then she introduced her companion—'Mademoiselle Lili CortaudLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 . . . Signora FavioSignora Favio (fictional), wife of Favio, no known historical model.'

a1c07p030

"The signoraSignora Favio (fictional), wife of Favio, no known historical model had achieved her aim, and she hastened to invite Mademoiselle LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 with Madame SparreGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator to the social evening. We accepted with pleasure.

a1c07p031

"The mystification succeeded beyond all expectation. Grete's French friendLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was welcomed with extreme cordiality by the whole company. A well-known Norwegian lady novelist pledged Mademoiselle LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 in a lively toast as 'the most perfect incarnation of French charm and Parisian elegance'. She did not stir from LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's side. She invited LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 to visit her in NorwayNorway is a Scandinavian country in northern Europe whose capital is Oslo..

a1c07p032

"LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 and GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator were both delighted, for the enchanting, perhaps I should say the piquant, thing about this new friendship was that this passionate Norwegian had hitherto shown a striking aversion to me.

Page 76
a1c07p033

"In the following days Grete's French friendLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 gave a few more performances. In order to explain my continued absence, GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator told everybody who was curious on the point that her friend LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 and I did not get on at all well together. But CapriCapri (histoical), island off Italy in the Gulf of Naples is a small place, and LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was soon obliged to 'depart', in order to leave the field clear for me. FavioFavio (fictional), no known historical model and all the others remained completely unsuspecting.

a1c07p034

"When we returned to ParisParis (historical), capital of France, it frequently happened that after GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator had employed her as a model during the hours of daylight, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 remained in bed during the whole evening. And if one or other of our intimate friends dropped in, she did not, as formerly, fly into another room, but stayed where she was and where the others were, and behaved charmingly.

a1c07p035

"Gradually everybody came to like her. She was, as GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator was always obliged to acknowledge, the good fairy of all our little studio festivities.

a1c07p036

"But everybody made a great distinction between LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 and me. GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator's female friends, who treated me with almost ceremonial propriety, embraced LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 and petted her. So did GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator's and my male friends.

a1c07p037

"It was also strange that when LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 found herself among GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator's lady friends—who, like herself, were artists almost without exception— she felt the most feminine of them all. At first the friends laughed somewhat heartily at this fact, but gradually observed that LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's feeling was genuine.

a1c07p038

"And thus it came to pass that month after month LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 insisted with growing stubbornness on her rights, and gave place to me with increasing reluctance.

a1c07p039

"In the Salon d'AutomneSalon d'Automne (historical), annual art exhibit in Paris begun in 1903, where we both
[Page 77]
exhibited, GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and I had met a French sculptor, Jean TempêteJean Tempête (fictional), modeled on Léon Leyritz (1888-1976), French sculptor and friend of the Wegeners. This acquaintance was to lead to new experiences for LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931.

a1c07p040

"He possessed a summer-house in a small town on the Loire. Assisted by a number of friends, he intended giving a theatrical performance upon the tiny stage of this small town for charitable purposes. BalgencieBalgencie (fictional), modeled on Beaugency, a town on the Loire river in southern France was the name of the place.

a1c07p041

"He invited GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and I to take part.

a1c07p042

"It proved to be a delightful drive. The small town was a miniature RothenburgRothenburg (historical), a medieval town in Bavaria.

a1c07p043

"The 'theatre', which was to be occupied by us that same evening, looked from the outside like a tobacco shop with a café attached. The interior was usually let for cinematograph exhibitions and dances. As there was only one piece of scenery, which, moreover, was useless for our purpose, GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator was immediately appointed scene-painter. With lightning rapidity she sketched the stage scenery for the revue, which had been composed by Jean TempêteJean Tempête (fictional), modeled on Léon Leyritz (1888-1976), French sculptor and friend of the Wegeners himself.

a1c07p044

"At six o'clock in the evening everything was ready, and at nine o'clock the performance was to begin.

a1c07p045

"At seven o'clock TempêteJean Tempête (fictional), modeled on Léon Leyritz (1888-1976), French sculptor and friend of the Wegeners and I repaired to the station, in order to fetch the only member of our company who was still missing, a young lady artist who for some reason or other had not been able to travel with the others. She had to play a minor part, that of a typical Parisienne.

a1c07p046

"The train arrived, but our Parisienne was not on board. It was the last train before the performance.

Page 78
a1c07p047

"TempêteJean Tempête (fictional), modeled on Léon Leyritz (1888-1976), French sculptor and friend of the Wegeners raved. Small as the part was, without the player the piece would collapse.

a1c07p048

"'Then we must ask GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator to step into the breach,' I declared.

a1c07p049

"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and I, who had only been invited to join the travelling party at the eleventh hour, did not belong to the company of players.

a1c07p050

"'An excellent idea!' exclaimed TempêteJean Tempête (fictional), modeled on Léon Leyritz (1888-1976), French sculptor and friend of the Wegeners, and the moment he entered the so-called hotel where we had found accommodation, he pounced upon GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator. Completely exhausted by her scene-painting, she was lying on a rickety sofa.

a1c07p051

"'Out of the question,' she declared. 'With the best will in the world, I cannot do it.' Then she gave me a furtive look. 'But perhaps . . . LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 can?'

a1c07p052

"'Who is LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931?' asked TempêteJean Tempête (fictional), modeled on Léon Leyritz (1888-1976), French sculptor and friend of the Wegeners. They all asked the same question.

a1c07p053

"'Don't worry about that. The main thing is that she comes. She can play the part without any trouble,' GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator assured the curious circle. She caught hold of TempêteJean Tempête (fictional), modeled on Léon Leyritz (1888-1976), French sculptor and friend of the Wegeners, drew him aside, and gave him the necessary explanations. He shook with laughter, promised to hold his tongue, and then it was arranged that while LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was being dressed he should initiate her into the part of the fast-dyed Parisienne in the seclusion of an hotel sitting-room.

a1c07p054

"When evening came and the revue was launched in front of a crowded audience, not a soul in the hall suspected that LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was not a genuine Parisienne. Moreover, the poetically minded chemist of Balgencie, who was a member of the charity committee, was so enthusiastic over
[Page 79]
LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 that he sent a box of violet soap to the unknown beauty at her hotel.

a1c07p055

"On this evening LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 became acquainted with her truest friend, Claude LejeuneClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923, the tenor of the revue. He was the comic character of the evening. His mere appearance on the stage unloosed a storm of merriment. He was the only real artiste in this company of amateurs; that is to say, he was the only member of it who was not an amateur.

a1c07p056

"Earlier in the day I had already noticed this young artiste, who with his droll, lightning wit might have bobbed up in any MontmartreMontmartre (historical), a hilltop section of Paris, renowned locate for artists and intellectuals in the 1920s bar. He had completely irregular features and colourless, somewhat deep-set eyes, the whole capped by a funny, pointed nose. At first glance he would probably appear ugly, but if one looked at him somewhat longer one would become conscious of a remarkable geniality and kindliness which his whole personality radiated.

a1c07p057

"If anything he had given me (AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter) the cold shoulder, but his conduct towards LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was of quite another character.

a1c07p058

"It went without saying that, like the rest of his colleagues from ParisParis (historical), capital of France, he was soon 'in the picture'. As for the rest, discretion was observed.

a1c07p059

"And the citizens, who had arranged a charity ball after the performance was over, of which we 'Parisians' were to form the centre of attraction, saw in LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, who at the desire of all the company had remained in her stage costume, the typical Parisienne. Wherever she showed herself, she was treated with exquisite courtesy. She enjoyed herself immensely. She was sought after more than
[Page 80]
any other dancer at the ball. When at length she found she could skip a dance, Claude LejeuneClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923 made his way towards her, bowed in his most amusing way, then, in order to show the most serious face in the world, screwed his monocle tighter into his eye, even blushed a little, and said almost solemnly: 'Mademoiselle, may I, as soon as you have somewhat recovered, solicit the honour of being your dancing partner a number of times in succession?' LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 looked at him somewhat surprised, and then nodded. And during this night they danced together many times. They were both about the same height. During the dancing they scarcely spoke a word to each other. They danced, completely surrendering themselves to the rhythm of the dance.

a1c07p060

"When the last dance was over, Claude LejeuneClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923 bowed very low before LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, blushed again, and said: 'Mademoiselle, may I hope you will honour the excursion we are making to-morrow with your presence?'

a1c07p061

"The other comrades also begged LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, and she promised with a smile. Only the 'Parisians' took part in this excursion, otherwise LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 could hardly have been present. The day passed in perfect harmony, and it was arranged that everybody should meet again in BalgencieBalgencie (fictional), modeled on Beaugency, a town on the Loire river in southern France on the first of August, to spend their holidays together on the banks of the LoireBanks of Loire River (historical); the longest river in France. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was specially invited. She promised, on behalf of her brother AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter. By this name LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 henceforth called—me.

a1c07p062

" That evening we returned to ParisParis (historical), capital of France

a1c07p063

"In August the 'ParisParis (historical), capital of France gang', as we were henceforward called, half admiringly, half apprehensively,

                     EINAR WEGENER (ANDREAS SPARRE), 1929
EINAR WEGENEREinar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter; married to Gerda Wegener; died as Lili Elbe in Dresden, 1931 (ANDREAS SPARREAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter), 1929


[Page 81]
conquered the little townBalgencie (fictional), modeled on Beaugency, a town on the Loire river in southern France, together with the delightful bathing-placeBanks of Loire River (historical); the longest river in France. The thermometer registered 85 degrees in the shade. Frequently we were obliged to prolong our day into the night, which was all the more amusing as by ten o'clock in the evening the little townBalgencie (fictional), modeled on Beaugency, a town on the Loire river in southern France was shrouded in darkness, whether the moon was full or new.

a1c07p064

"The so-called respectable society of BalgencieBalgencie (fictional), modeled on Beaugency, a town on the Loire river in southern France kept at a distance from us, with the exception of Monsieur RenéMonsieur René (fictional), possibly modeled on a deputy mayor of Beaugency, Henri René Goujon, the deputy mayor. The 'proper' civic chief had been obliged for a long time to shift the official business on to the broad shoulders of Monsieur RenéMonsieur René (fictional), possibly modeled on a deputy mayor of Beaugency, Henri René Goujon, owing to chronic stomach trouble. Monsieur RenéMonsieur René (fictional), possibly modeled on a deputy mayor of Beaugency, Henri René Goujon, as everybody in the town called him, was a bachelor. He took part in all our nocturnal excursions through the environs of his town, and it was he who during those August days submitted to the town councillors solemnly assembled in the town hall a proposal to organize, with the help of the 'ParisParis (historical), capital of France gang', another civic function for charitable purposes. The proposal was unanimously accepted. The next day solemn invitations were delivered to Jean TempêteJean Tempête (fictional), modeled on Léon Leyritz (1888-1976), French sculptor and friend of the Wegeners, GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, and me, as well as to a few other prominent members of our party, to devise a programme for the function. We resolved to organize a water-carnival, with flower-bedecked boats, on the LoireLoire River (historical), the longest river in France. CupidCupid (fictional), the god of love in classical mythology's boat was to sail at the head of the procession of boats.

a1c07p065

"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator received instructions to prepare CupidCupid (fictional), the god of love in classical mythology's boat.

a1c07p066

"Monsieur RenéMonsieur René (fictional), possibly modeled on a deputy mayor of Beaugency, Henri René Goujon placed at our disposal an old broad-bottomed boat, as well as a boathouse, together with his wine cellar. When the rather
[Page 82]
shabby boat was at length transformed into CupidCupid (fictional), the god of love in classical mythology's festive gondola—the sail was a large red heart—and the launching had taken place, it transpired that, owing to its splendid, as well as very weighty, equipment, the craft was extremely difficult to steer. At BalgencieBalgencie (fictional), modeled on Beaugency, a town on the Loire river in southern France the LoireLoire River (historical), the longest river in France is very impetuous, and treacherous winds render a sail rather dangerous. It was therefore necessary for CupidCupid (fictional), the god of love in classical mythology, as well as his attendant, to be strong swimmers. As no practised and daring swimmer could be discovered among the young ladies of the town, Jean TempêteJean Tempête (fictional), modeled on Léon Leyritz (1888-1976), French sculptor and friend of the Wegeners very discreetly asked me if I could not assume CupidCupid (fictional), the god of love in classical mythology's rôle, provided Claude LejeuneClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923 was assigned to me as squire. I was known to be an excellent swimmer. I promised on behalf of LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 and also of ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923, who had meanwhile become a good friend of ours.

a1c07p067

"Thus on the banks of this ancient townshipBanks of Loire River (historical); the longest river in France, into which Joan of ArcJoan of Arc (1412-1431), soldier in the Hundred Years’ War and a Roman Catholic saint; fought in the Battle of Beaugency in 1429 had made her entry as a warrior in steel and iron centuries before, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was dressed up as the boy CupidCupid (fictional), the god of love in classical mythology. . . . The carnival took place in glorious midsummer weather. The whole population stood on the shore and greeted CupidCupid (fictional), the god of love in classical mythology with frantic cheers as he sailed in triumph upon the smooth glassy surface of the LoireLoire River (historical), the longest river in France. With his golden bow he shot a rain of arrows at the thousands of heads peeping through the trellis-work on the shore. And everybody believed that behind CupidCupid (fictional), the god of love in classical mythology's mask was concealed the typical Parisienne from the revue of the last charity performance.

a1c07p068

"Upon ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923 had devolved the task, after the carnival was over, of conducting LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 to her hotel through a crowd wild with enthusiasm,
[Page 83]
and when at length he brought her intact to her room, he looked at her long and then said, very quietly: 'However you dress up and whatever you want to make me believe, you are a genuine girl.'

a1c07p069

"He stopped, startled at his own temerity. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 stared at him.

a1c07p070

"'What is the matter, ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923?' she asked.

a1c07p071

"'Nothing,' he said quietly, 'nothing at all. Or it is something? But if I told LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 what I was just thinking and what I have been thinking all day, her brother AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter would certainly be very angry with me.'

a1c07p072

"Then he went, and when we saw each other again the following morning he looked at me shyly and kept out of my way. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 had again disappeared.

a1c07p073

"Year after year we all met again at BalgencieBalgencie (fictional), modeled on Beaugency, a town on the Loire river in southern France, where I gradually became accustomed to LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's and my double experience. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 took part in the festivities and excursions. I painted very industriously, swam and drank many glasses of wine with the notabilities of the town. I had many friends there. All the inhabitants of the town knew me and were delighted to recognize their houses and gardens and themselves in pictures of mine, which might subsequently hang in the autumn exhibitions of ParisParis (historical), capital of France. But nobody in the town suspected the identity of the slender ParisienneLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 who now and then strolled with GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923 through the alleys of the town and out into the country. These trips were among LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's most delightful recollections. In the early dawn, before any bedroom window was opened, the three of them
[Page 84]
would march out into the summer morning, and not until late in the evening, when the town had long since retired to rest, did they return, tired and happy. ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923 was then GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator's and LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's most delightful cavalier; he was their brother and protector, and the friendship between them became ever more intimate and permanent, a friendship which stood every test.

a1c07p074

"It went without saying that this 'triple alliance' continued in ParisParis (historical), capital of France. Every Sunday ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923 made his appearance, when he was the guest of the studio for the whole of the day. And in accordance with an unwritten law, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 always received him at the door in the corridor. If, however, she was, by a rare chance, absent, and I had to open the door to him, we greeted each other in a very comradely way; he gave me his hand, asked about this and that; but I could always remark his disappointment. In the studio he would then look at my pictures, although quite cursorily; politics and similar topics were touched on in conversation and even the latest Parisian scandal. But it did not last long, at the most a quarter of an hour, and then ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923 would look at me somewhat uncertainly. 'I have not yet said good day to GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator.' And then he would disappear into the little kitchen to join GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator.

a1c07p075

"But if LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 opened the door to him on Sundays, he would at once go with her into the kitchen.

a1c07p076

"In this connection I recall a little incident which happened just at that time.

a1c07p077

"ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923 had come to see us one weekday evening. GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator was not at home. I then suggested to him that we should visit some amusing dancing-bar
[Page 85]
in the Quartier LatinQuartier Saint Germain (historical), also known as the Latin Quarter (see D1), section of Paris together. We landed in the Gipsy BarGipsy Bar (fictional), no known historical analogue, where ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923 ordered the speciality of the house, namely a coffin-nail. This cocktail was not unworthy of its very promising name. A frequent repetition of the enjoyment of this drink during a day or a night is calculated to curtail considerably our sojourn here below. Perhaps it was this drink which prompted us to try out a new dance which ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923 had recently seen somewhere. Moreover, it was the first time that he had danced with me. We had scarcely taken the first step before the manager made a dash at us and requested us to stop dancing immediately. The gentlemen must excuse him; he knew us both very well, but in his establishment, unfortunately, they did not allow two gentlemen to dance together.

a1c07p078

"We duly explained to the strict gentleman that all we were concerned about was trying out a new dance. He answered: 'Messieurs, I am sorry, but gentlemen are not allowed to dance together here. If I permitted it only for one occasion, and I know that in your case I am dealing with irreproachable gentlemen, my establishment would be over-run by persons of a certain type and its reputation would suffer injury.'

a1c07p079

" We sat down again with a laugh, ordered a harmless apéritif, and then went home.

a1c07p080

" The next evening GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, and ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923 visited the dancing-barGipsy Bar (fictional), no known historical analogue. ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923 had, in the meantime, taught both ladies the same dance, and shortly after entering the bar ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923 and LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 executed the extremely complicated dance without a hitch, amid the vigorous applause of the manager.

Page 86
a1c07p081

"Then he came over to ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923's table, made a polite bow to GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, and especially to LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, and said: 'I hope that your friend, whom I am sorry not to see with you to-day, has not avoided my establishment because he was irritated at the little incident of yesterday evening. Monsieur will understand."

a1c07p082

"'Oh, we understand,' answered ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923, 'and I can assure you that my friendAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter is not annoyed in the least.'

a1c07p083

"And the manager turned to LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931: 'May I offer Mademoiselle my heartiest congratulations? Mademoiselle dances charmingly, charmingly." And then, turning to ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923: 'Monsieur will admit that his partner of yesterday cannot be compared in the least with Mademoiselle.'

a1c07p084

"In connection with this amusing encounter I must tell you about another experience, which also happened about this time.

a1c07p085

"Together with ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923 and GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was sometimes invited to a smart artists' club. The club evening usually consisted of a meal followed by a ball. One evening, GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator being tired, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 went there alone with ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923, at his urgent request. A lady who was an intimate friend of ours and knew me as well as LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931—for the rest, nobody in the club suspected our double existence—made a point this evening of introducing LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 to a number of gentlemen, including her cousincousin (fictional), historical figure unidentified, a nobleman who was no longer quite young. Hitherto LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 had declined to make fresh acquaintances on these club evenings, which were rare events for her. She was happy enough dancing with ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923, and did not need any other partners. Yet, before she could decline, her friend fetched her cousin: 'My cousin, le Comte de TrempeComte de Trempe (fictional), no known historical model
[Page 87]
la Baronne Lili de CortaudLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931.' The gallant CountComte de Trempe (fictional), no known historical model immediately challenged LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 to a fox-trot. This dance was followed by several more. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 could not refuse. ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923 nodded to her merrily. Thus it happened that LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 danced with her new cavalier until far into the night. When at length, completely exhausted, she said farewell to him 'for the present', with the most solemn face in the world he begged 'Madame la BaronneLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931', who, as his cousin had whispered, was staying with GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator for a few days, to allow him to pay his respects to her the following day. What else could LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 do than make the best of a bad job?

a1c07p086

"When LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 reached home, GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator was fast asleep.

a1c07p087

"The next morning, while LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was telling GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator about her conquest in the club, the bell rang in the corridor. The CountComte de Trempe (fictional), no known historical model appeared; he made profuse apologies—GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator had opened the door—in case he was intruding, but he only wanted to inquire after the health of her guest, the Baroness Lili de CortaudLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931.

a1c07p088

"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator regretted sincerely that her visitor had already gone out, and showed the CountComte de Trempe (fictional), no known historical model into the studio, where he immediately discovered portraits of LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 all over the place. He was beside himself with enthusiasm. Might he wait until the BaronessLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 returned? GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator assured him that this would be a useless undertaking, as her visitor, who was also her sister-in-lawLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, had been invited to dinner with friends.

a1c07p089

"'Oh,' the CountComte de Trempe (fictional), no known historical model then exclaimed, 'so your husband—Monsieur SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter—is brother to the BaronessLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931.'

Page 88
a1c07p090

"In her distress GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator was obliged to admit this fact.

a1c07p091

"'When may I perhaps have the pleasure of calling on Monsieur SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter?' asked the CountComte de Trempe (fictional), no known historical model, almost flurried.

a1c07p092

"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator promised to let him know soon through his cousin.

a1c07p093

"The following day—we were taking tea in our studio with a few friends and were just discussing LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's involuntary experience—the corridor bell rang again. The CountComte de Trempe (fictional), no known historical model!

a1c07p094

"'I am sincerely delighted,' he began at once in his ceremonious way, 'to pay you a visit' (I could scarcely find time to usher him in). 'As I have already told Madame SparreGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, the day before yesterday I made the acquaintance of your sister, the charming BaronessLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, and I am most anxious to see her again.'

a1c07p095

"Of course it was now very difficult to keep up the pose, but we succeeded in doing so, and I replied: 'My sister will certainly be sorry to have missed the pleasure of shaking hands with you again, monsieur.'

a1c07p096

"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and our visitors had great difficulty in strangling an outburst of Homeric laughter. I had to throw them a warning look. Without thinking, I continued: 'Unfortunately, we are seeing very little of our sister these days, invited everywhere . . . very much sought after . . . scarcely home before midnight.'

a1c07p097

"'Yes, I quite understand that,' said the CountComte de Trempe (fictional), no known historical model, looking at me searchingly. My heart felt like an anvil trembling under the strokes of a hammer. He went on, speaking slowly and blinking through
[Page 89]
his monocle at every word: 'It is very strange that you are brother and sister, for Madame de CortaudLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 does not resemble you in the least, my dear sir.'

a1c07p098

"I agreed emphatically, and gave GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator an imploring look to keep a straight face. I had just finished a lengthy and prolix assurance that my sister and I did not resemble each other in the least, when the CountComte de Trempe (fictional), no known historical model addressed to me an inquiry as to whether my sister was, as his cousin intimated to him, not engaged, was really free.

a1c07p099

"Foolishly enough I did not contest this point.

a1c07p100

"Whereupon he made an exemplary bow and, without beating about the bush, declared: 'Then, monsieur, I have the honour of offering the BaronessLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 my hand.'

a1c07p101

"I thanked him in the name of my sister and promised to inform her of his flattering offer. He then withdrew, amidst the exchange of numerous compliments.

a1c07p102

"A moment later our studio was rocking with the roaring laughter of GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and our visitors.

a1c07p103

"I did not join in. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's experience at the ball was taking her out of her depth. I had to think of a way out.

a1c07p104

"'Quite simple,' cried GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, whose laughter had brought tears into her eyes. 'I will tell the cousin to inform the CountComte de Trempe (fictional), no known historical model that his lady-love has been suddenly obliged to leave for CopenhagenCopenhagen (historical), capital of Denmark for very urgent family reasons. For the present a return to ParisParis (historical), capital of France is out of the question.'

a1c07p105

"And so it happened. A few postcards which we caused to be posted to the CountComte de Trempe (fictional), no known historical model by a friend in CopenhagenCopenhagen (historical), capital of Denmark, who had to forge LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's 'handwriting',
[Page 90]
gradually convinced him of the 'hopelessness' of his wooing.

a1c07p106

"He never learnt who LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was.

a1c07p107

"Even stranger was something that happened at the house of my sister and my brother-in-law in Copenhagen, where we were staying some months later on a visit.

a1c07p108

"My little nieceniece (fictional), possibly modelled on Else, daughter of Einar Wegener’s sister had seen pictures of LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, and wanted to see this remarkable person for once 'in the life'. So it was arranged that she should be present one Sunday afternoon, which my parents were also to spend with my relatives. My parents had not seen GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and me for a number of years. Consequently fatherFather (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s father, Vilhelm Wegener and motherMother (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s mother, Ane Marie Wegener (née Thomsen) were disappointed to learn on their arrival that I was not expected until later, as I had a very important call to make first. Suddenly the bell rang in the hall. The girl announced that a French lady was in the passage and wanted to speak to Madame Grete SparreGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator. The lady was brought in; GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator welcomed her in the most cordial manner. It was a friend from ParisParis (historical), capital of France—unfortunately she only spoke French. And . . . FatherFather (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s father, Vilhelm Wegener immediately began a conversation in French! MotherMother (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s mother, Ane Marie Wegener (née Thomsen), who made him translate everything to her, was enormously proud of him!

a1c07p109

"In the course of the conversation MotherMother (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s mother, Ane Marie Wegener (née Thomsen) suddenly warned FatherFather (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s father, Vilhelm Wegener that he should not keep so close to the window with the lady from ParisParis (historical), capital of France. It was the middle of winter. 'Don't forget,' she said to FatherFather (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s father, Vilhelm Wegener, looking thoughtfully at the lady, 'the lady comes from a much milder climate and is so thinly clad. Please tell her to sit near the stove.' Then tea was served. And FatherFather (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s father, Vilhelm Wegener and MotherMother (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s mother, Ane Marie Wegener (née Thomsen) plied
[Page 91]
the foreign visitor with requests for the latest news from ParisParis (historical), capital of France.

a1c07p110

"For a whole hour the 'Parisienne' kept up the deception in front of FatherFather (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s father, Vilhelm Wegener and MotherMother (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s mother, Ane Marie Wegener (née Thomsen). When she suddenly disclosed her identity, they both covered their faces with their hands. They could no longer trust their own eyes.

a1c07p111

"'No, no!' repeated MotherMother (fictional), modeled on Einar Wegener’s mother, Ane Marie Wegener (née Thomsen), after a long interval. 'That AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter and Mademoiselle LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 from ParisParis (historical), capital of France are one and the same person I cannot believe.'

Page 92

VIII

a1c08p001

"So LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 and I continued to live our double life, and no one, neither the 'initiated' nor myself, saw in this anything else than a pleasant kind of distraction and entertainment, a kind of artists' caprice, neither more nor less. We were as little perturbed at the obviously growing distinction, of an emotional kind, which increasingly manifested itself between the mystical girl and myself; nor did anyone take any serious notice of the delicate changes which gradually became perceptible in my physical form.

a1c08p002

"But something had been silently preparing in me.

a1c08p003

"One evening I said suddenly to GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator:

a1c08p004

"'Really I cannot imagine what existence would be like if LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 should one day vanish for ever, or if she should no longer look young and beautiful. Then she would no longer have any justification for living at all.'

a1c08p005

"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator at first looked at me astonished. Then she nodded and said in her calm, thoughtful way: 'It is strange that you have mentioned something which has been on my mind a good deal lately. In recent months I have felt prickings of conscience because I was, to a certain extent, the cause of creating LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, of enticing her out of you, and thus becoming responsible for a disharmony in you which
[Page 93]
reveals itself most distinctly on those days when LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 does not appear.'

a1c08p006

"I was thunderstruck at GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator's words. It was as if she had held up a mirror in front of me.

a1c08p007

"'It often happens,' she continued excitedly, 'that when she poses for me as a model a strange feeling comes over me that it is she whom I am creating and forming rather than the girl whom I am representing on my canvas. Sometimes it seems to me that here is something which is stronger than we are, something which makes us powerless and will thrust us aside, as if, indeed, it wanted to be revenged on us for having played with it.'

a1c08p008

" GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator broke off. Tears stood in her eyes. 'We have come to a steep part of the road, and I don't know where we shall find foothold,' she cried. I tried to calm her; but I scarcely succeeded, at least, not at once. I spoke and she listened to me. 'What you say is all so terribly true. And the most dangerous thing of all is that I feel it is LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, just LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, who forms the bond between us which has lasted all these years. I do not believe I could survive her.'

a1c08p009

"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator interrupted me to say that she had very often thought exactly the same, as LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 embodied our common youth and joy in life. She sobbed: 'Sometimes I wonder what life would be without her.'

a1c08p010

"We stared at each other, deeply moved by this mutual confession, which had been provoked by many, many weeks of secret brooding.

a1c08p011

"'At any rate, I cannot imagine, GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator went on, 'what it would be like for us without LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931.
[Page 94]
We must not lose her. If she should suddenly vanish, it would seem like a murder.'

a1c08p012

"'The more so as I cannot help feeling that she is on the verge of becoming more vigorous than I am,' I said uneasily.

a1c08p013

"Perhaps this conversation had the effect of plunging me into a momentary fit of despondency; but in other respects my health had been excellent during all these years. In spite of the fact that I had never looked very robust, although I was equal to every physical exertion, I had never really been ill. Just recently I had frequently felt indisposed, my chief sensation being one of utter weariness. Also, I had not stood too well the very cold rainy weather which ParisParis (historical), capital of France had latterly experienced year after year. I would cough from late autumn until spring almost without intermission. No doubt that is how I came to have gloomy thoughts. One cannot be young for ever, I would reflect. And then I would think of LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931. She shared her body with me. She was a woman. To remain young meant more for her than for me.

a1c08p014

"My outlook became more and more melancholy. By nature I had always been a gay person, especially as long as I lived in ParisParis (historical), capital of France. But all this was now over. There were days, weeks, and months when I felt utterly impotent. The power to work went out of me. Everybody who had known me for years knew that I had been an industrious person. I could not understand myself.

a1c08p015

"At intervals there would be a return of more lucid periods, whenever I could live in the country far from ParisParis (historical), capital of France and collect fresh subjects, especially in BalgencieBalgencie (fictional), modeled on Beaugency, a town on the Loire river in southern France. But they did not last long. I grew
[Page 95]
more and more tired, more and more languid. I did not know what to do with myself. It was an unbearable condition to be in.

a1c08p016

"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator began to be uneasy. She persuaded me to see a doctor, and to please her I did so. The doctor found nothing specific the matter and prescribed a nerve tonic. It did no good. A new doctor was consulted, with a similar result, and so on.

a1c08p017

"But when LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 appeared, everything went well, and life was fair once more. Every trace of ill-humour vanished.

a1c08p018

"Consequently she now came as often as possible. In the meantime she had built up her own circle of friends and acquaintances, and she had her own memories and habits, which had nothing whatever to do with me. Often she would stay for several days in succession, and then she would sit contented with GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, or even sit quite alone by herself, sewing or embroidering, and smiling to herself, happy in this feminine occupation. Nobody understood this mystery, neither GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator nor ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques. They all regarded this enigmatic being LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, who built up her own world around her, with head-shakings and astonishment. But they let LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 alone, and she was happy.

a1c08p019

"Something that happened just at this time was to inaugurate, more quickly than was anticipated, the last period of this incessant and ruthless inner struggle between LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 and myself. And for a long time it looked as if neither of us would survive this contest.

a1c08p020

"About two years ago my old friend Iven PersenIven Persen (fictional), modeled on Johannes Poulsen (1881–1938), Danish actor and director, married to Ulla Poulsen of the Theatre RoyalThe Danish Royal Theater (historical), located in Copenhagen, CopenhagenCopenhagen (historical), capital of Denmark, gave
[Page 96]
a number of performances among us in ParisParis (historical), capital of France. As his wife, the well-known dancer Ebba PersenEbba Persen (fictional), modeled on Ulla Britta Poulsen Skou (née Iversen) (1905–2001), a Danish ballet dancer whom Gerda painted in Paris in 1927, accompanied him, a ballet had, of course, to be arranged for one of the evenings. The ballet corps was not large, and it was short of one dancer. Thereupon IvenIven Persen (fictional), modeled on Johannes Poulsen (1881–1938), Danish actor and director, married to Ulla Poulsen, who knew that I was not a bad dancer, asked whether I would care to take part. Without hesitation I replied in the affirmative.

a1c08p021

"At the ballet rehearsals, which lasted a very long time, I probably over-exerted myself. At any rate, I was then attacked for the first time by strange hæmorrhages. I bled mostly at the nose, but in so unusual a way that GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator became anxious, and implored me to abandon my dancer's part; but I was very unwilling to do this, as I did not want to leave my old friend in the lurch. I saw the business through, although these hæmorrhages came on after the first night and after each of the numerous repetitions. And the most amazing thing of all was that every time I was seized with a fit of utterly strange convulsive sobbing. When the attack was over, however, I felt as if liberated, just as if something torpid in me had been dissolved; as if something new, something never before felt, was stirring. My whole being seemed as if transformed, as if a dam had suddenly burst.

a1c08p022

"Never had music made so disturbing, so shattering an impression on me as on that evening. An achingly sweet and yet elevating sensation, which gripped all my senses, so the music wrought on me, moving me to tears, and the tears became convulsive sobs.

a1c08p023

"A complete revolution in my character began on this evening. Formerly my intercourse with

                     EINAR WEGENER (ANDREAS SPARRE) AFTER HAVING DEFINITELY
                            ASSUMED THE NAME OF LILI, PARIS, JANUARY 1930
EINAR WEGENEREinar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter; married to Gerda Wegener; died as Lili Elbe in Dresden, 1931 (ANDREAS SPARREAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter) AFTER HAVING DEFINITELY ASSUMED THE NAME OF LILILili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, PARISParis (historical), capital of France, JANUARY 1930


[Page 97]
people had been rather imperious and condescending. From the first rehearsal I had been tormented by a feeling of failure. I was utterly astonished at myself. I no longer recognized myself. A strong impulse to resign myself, to obey, to submit myself unconditionally to another will, had seized hold of me. This impulse seemed to dominate me. IvenIven Persen (fictional), modeled on Johannes Poulsen (1881–1938), Danish actor and director, married to Ulla Poulsen, my old friend and boon companion, acted the chief rôle of the evening, apart from EbbaEbba Persen (fictional), modeled on Ulla Britta Poulsen Skou (née Iversen) (1905–2001), a Danish ballet dancer whom Gerda painted in Paris in 1927. Only a year before the three of us had been very merry together in CopenhagenCopenhagen (historical), capital of Denmark. It had never before occurred to me to play second fiddle to him, to recognize him as the leading spirit! But on this evening, from the time of the first rehearsal, I submitted to him slavishly. Not a word of contradiction on my part did he encounter. And not only that, but I blushed like a boy when he requested me to do this or that step differently, to bow somewhat more or less at some figure or the other, and the like. And if he as much as touched me, I felt so confused that I did not know where to look.

a1c08p024

"In all these psychic disturbances which I then experienced, nothing of an erotic nature played the slightest part. In this respect IvenIven Persen (fictional), modeled on Johannes Poulsen (1881–1938), Danish actor and director, married to Ulla Poulsen and I had thoroughly sound natures. What it therefore meant I could not discover. It simply was so. And it was not I who first observed this change to humility, as GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator called it, but GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator herself. She teased me about it laughingly. But behind her smile was concealed an unbounded astonishment.

a1c08p025

"For the general rehearsal I wore my dancing-costume for the first time, close-fitting tights, a bolero, and a wig of short curls. After the general rehearsal was over, when I was standing in a dirty,
[Page 98]
ill-lighted corridor of the theatre, which was to take the place of the non-existent dressing-rooms, and while I was in the act of washing off powder and paint, a number of lasquenets, who likewise belonged to the ballet, passed behind me, clinking their weapons. One of them gave me a light slap.

a1c08p026

"'It suits you admirably to play a part in trousers, mademoiselle,' grinned the fellow.

a1c08p027

"When I turned round with an energetic protest, the fellow slipped away, exclaiming: 'There is far too much bluff these days, ma petite demoiselle.'

a1c08p028

"A few minutes later I had to go on the stage. When IvenIven Persen (fictional), modeled on Johannes Poulsen (1881–1938), Danish actor and director, married to Ulla Poulsen perceived me, he burst out laughing, and cried: 'No, children, this won't do. Now we have too many ladies!'

a1c08p029

"For a moment I did not understand the allusion. Then I turned round perplexed, all eyes upon me and everybody grinning. Red as a turkey-cock I rushed out, ran into the arms of a dresser, clutched him, and begged him 'at the producerIven Persen (fictional), modeled on Johannes Poulsen (1881–1938), Danish actor and director, married to Ulla Poulsen's request to dress me rather more like a man'.

a1c08p030

" He endeavoured to do so with the assistance of a colleague, and indeed amid the giggles of both worthies. And I pulled myself together and behaved as if all this left me utterly unmoved.

a1c08p031

"The evening before the première I met in the wings an actor of striking muscular development, who had to dance in the ballet in the same costume as I was wearing. When he saw me, he inspected me from top to toe, and then blurted out angrily: 'Good God, man, you look impossible like that!'

a1c08p032

"I was speechless and felt as if I should like to sink into the earth. Had such a thing previously
[Page 99]
been said to me by a man, I would have knocked him down.

a1c08p033

"When I afterwards related everything to GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, she confessed that she too had been struck by the strange alteration in the contours of my body. In my dancing-costume I had looked like a woman impersonating a man.

a1c08p034

"In the time which followed, my nervous condition assumed a feverish character. Henceforth at almost regular intervals these mysterious fits of depression, accompanied by severe hæmorrhages and violent pains, set in. And then, in addition, there were these disconcerting fits of sobbing. At first I thought that I had displaced some internal organ during the ballet performances, and GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator too thought this. Consequently, we went to a doctor, who was really a heart specialist and not competent to deal with my alleged illness. But he had known me for years. Of LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, on the other hand, he knew nothing. Only our most intimate friends had been initiated, among whom the doctor was not numbered. Hence I did not broach the subject of my double life during this visit, although I myself had begun to suspect a connection between this and my physical condition.

a1c08p035

"As, after making a thorough examination, he found nothing which would explain the remarkable phenomena which had recently manifested themselves, he took me to a specialist, whom I had known slightly at VersaillesVersailles (historical), a royal palace outside Paris. This doctor then examined my body with great particularity and growing astonishment, and eventually thought he was able to detect strange irregularities in my inside. For the rest, he declared that the only thing to be
[Page 100]
done was to wait, especially as my whole constitution was very healthy and unimpaired; such a body as mine could stand a good deal.

a1c08p036

"Although this doctor had not said anything definite, this conversation gave me confidence and an almost mystical hope.

a1c08p037

"By this time I was perfectly clear in my own mind that something of a most unusual character must be happening inside me. I had inferred this more from the doctor's expression than from anything he had said.

a1c08p038

"And then, like so many sick persons who do not know what is really the matter with them, I began to procure all kinds of scientific books dealing with sexual problems. Within a short time I acquired an expert knowledge in this department, and knew many things of which the layman hardly dreams. But gradually it became clear to me that nothing which related to normal men and women could throw any light on my mysterious case.

a1c08p039

"So it came about that I formed an independent opinion, to the effect that I was both man and woman in one body, and that the woman in this body was in process of gaining the upper hand. Upon this assumption I explained the disturbances, both physical and psychic, from which I was suffering to an increasing extent.

a1c08p040

"All this I confided to GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator. And when, encouraged by her, I submitted my theory to various doctors in ParisParis (historical), capital of France and VersaillesVersailles (historical), a royal palace outside Paris, they greeted it not merely with head-shakings, but even with disdain. The most polite among them treated me indulgently for every possible illness, while others regarded me as an hysterical subject, or simply as a lunatic.

Page 101
a1c08p041

"It was a terrible time. My health was on the downgrade, and soon I was unable to get any sleep. GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator was the only person who believed with me firmly in my theory. I owed it to her that I did not lose faith that one day I should find salvation.

a1c08p042

"Exactly a year ago we journeyed southward once more, to ItalyItaly is a European country whose capital is Rome.. GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator thought that a change of air just at this time, when ParisParis (historical), capital of France was having very rainy weather, would do me good. The French winter had been unusually cold. The whole of March had been spoiled by rainy weather. Beyond the AlpsAlps (historical), a mountain range in Europe we found the world in blossom.

a1c08p043

"We travelled to RomeRome (historical), capital of Italy, where we had arranged to meet an Italian officerRidolfo Feruzzi (fictional), modeled on Fernando Porta (b. 1897), Gerda Wegener’s second husband whom we had met years before in FlorenceFlorence (historical), city in Italy. He had just returned home on furlough from the East after a long period of colonial service. He was waiting for us at the railway station and escorted us to our hotel, and then we were to dine somewhere in the town. I was utterly exhausted after the long railway journey and was suffering indescribable agony; but I did not want to spoil the day for GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and our friend. I therefore went with them.

a1c08p044

"We entered Facciano'sFacciano (historical), no known historical analogue and found a table. Through the open door the soft evening breezes streamed in from the beautiful Piazza ColonnaPiazza Colonna (historical), site of the famous Column of Marcus Aurelius in Rome, where we could see the shimmering white columns in front of the rusty-red façade of the Palazzo ChigiPalazzo Chigi (historical), a 15th-century palace named after the Chigi family and the colonnade of Biffi, which re-echoed to the shrill cries of newspaper sellers, and thus saved one the expense of buying a journal. The orchestra played divinely. I shall never forget that evening.

a1c08p045

"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator sat opposite me.

Page 102
a1c08p046

"It suddenly flashed upon me that she was looking as if she were hardly twenty-five years old. Every trace of fatigue had been charmed away from her features. And beside her sat our friend Ridolfo FeruzziRidolfo Feruzzi (fictional), modeled on Fernando Porta (b. 1897), Gerda Wegener’s second husband, who was beaming on her. When we had made his acquaintance years ago, it did not seem fated to become an enduring friendship. At that time he had been a half-baked lieutenant. Il bello tenente Feruzzi, he was then called—it had been during our first Italian trip. When we parted at that time it had seemed to be for ever, until his letter from the remote colony had reached us in ParisParis (historical), capital of France. Most of its contents had been addressed to GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator.

a1c08p047

"A feeling of deep melancholy stole over me. I found myself thinking of that time and of the years between, and, to some extent, of myself. What had I become?

a1c08p048

"I pulled myself together. A thousand questions were asked, and as many were answered. 'Do you remember the So and Sos? And Mrs. X? Do you remember that evening at Lapi . . . that afternoon in the Casino . . . and the evening which followed in the cinema in the Piazza Vittorio Emmanuele?' I saw it all as if it had been yesterday, and there was I sitting with GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and Ridolfo FeruzziRidolfo Feruzzi (fictional), modeled on Fernando Porta (b. 1897), Gerda Wegener’s second husband and laughing with them, and sometimes sharing a joke with them. They looked young, just as they did then so many years ago. But I joined in the laughter, although my laugh was forced and mechanical. My old zest in life had vanished. I had become another—a despondent person.

a1c08p049

"There in RomeRome (historical), capital of Italy, a year ago now, I realized
[Page 103]
quite definitely that it was all up with me, that I was at the end of my tether, irrevocably at the end. I felt and knew this as something unalterable.

a1c08p050

"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and I had rented a studio with a wide balcony in the neighbourhood of the Piazza di Spagna. Every day I was ill, every day. And all the time the roses and the orange trees were blooming in front of our studio window.

a1c08p051

"Now and then LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 appeared; but she had lost all her gaiety. She wept every time. She realized how beautiful life could be.

a1c08p052

"Sometimes GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator would weep as well. Otherwise, she was perfectly well, even in RomeRome (historical), capital of Italy. She tried to paint; but nothing would come of her efforts. When I lay awake at night beside her, I observed that she too was lying with wide-open eyes. Our evenings we passed with FeruzziRidolfo Feruzzi (fictional), modeled on Fernando Porta (b. 1897), Gerda Wegener’s second husband. His character, too, underwent a gradual change. A fitful melancholy weighed upon him, even when he tried to appear cheerful. He confessed that when all was said and done his life had been a failure. He could understand men who had reached this conclusion turning to the cloister as their last refuge. Undoubtedly there were such men, even in the twentieth century. I perceived that his words were seriously meant.

a1c08p053

"My thoughts wandered to GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator. Had she not also missed her life's purpose? Had she not sacrificed herself so that I should not live alone—because she felt that I had become a sick man—because she knew that she was the only person who could understand me? I knew that no earthly power could induce her to leave me—to-day less than ever. She was still young now. She still had
[Page 104]
time to catch up with many of the opportunities she had missed for my sake. For me life had no longer any attraction. I know this is a shallow thing to say, for others, but for me it said and comprised everything. Why should I drag out a miserable existence any longer? No doctor could discover what was the matter with me, nobody could help me. To go on living, ill and old before my time . . . the idea was too horrible to contemplate. I thought all this out without any feeling of self-commiseration. And thus the idea presented itself quite naturally: better dead. Then GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator would be free. Then life would have still many rich years in store for her. That evening in RomeRome (historical), capital of Italy I took a resolution. It still holds good. Only one thing can alter it.

a1c08p054

"It was then May. I gave myself a year's reprieve. If in the course of this year I should not find a doctor who could help me—who would try to save LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931—to separate her from me—I know how difficult it is for others to understand these words, to separate LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 from me—but how else shall I express the idea? Well, if I could not by the following May find this helper, then I would take a silent farewell from this existence, even if the other being who was obliged to share this existence with me in one body must also share my fate. I even appointed the day. It was to be the first of May. And I determined to carry out my design as discreetly as was possible to both of us—LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 and I—in order to spare GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator.

a1c08p055

"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator. . . . How to spare her? That was the hardest thing of all. I knew only too well how GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator would take a forcible termination of my life.

                     EINAR WEGENER'S (ANDREAS SPARRE) PICTURES AT Copenhagen EXHIBITION, 1930, IN
                            LIFETIME OF LILI ELBE
EINAR WEGENEREinar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter; married to Gerda Wegener; died as Lili Elbe in Dresden, 1931'S (ANDREAS SPARREAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter) PICTURES AT CopenhagenCopenhagen (historical), capital of Denmark EXHIBITION, 1930, IN LIFETIME OF LILI ELBELili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931


[Page 105]
But despite all my consideration and solicitude for the best and truest friend of my life, I realized that there was no other way out. It would, however, be a release for us both, and certainly the only one that was possible.

a1c08p056

"Once I had taken this decision I felt relieved. Now I knew that there would be an end of this torture within a measurable period of time.

a1c08p057

"My health worsened from day to day. And the moment came when GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator perceived that I could not remain in RomeRome (historical), capital of Italy any longer, that a return to ParisParis (historical), capital of France, where we knew some trustworthy doctors, was urgently necessary.

a1c08p058

"Unutterably depressed, we left RomeRome (historical), capital of Italy—and Ridolfo FeruzziRidolfo Feruzzi (fictional), modeled on Fernando Porta (b. 1897), Gerda Wegener’s second husband—one sunny spring morning much earlier than we had planned.

a1c08p059

"In ParisParis (historical), capital of France, in our native environment, my condition apparently improved. Again we visited a few specialists, but always with a negative result. Eventually a radiologist took me in hand. The treatment almost cost me my life, and I was nearly relieved of the necessity of despatching myself on the appointed first of May.

a1c08p060

"As the Parisian summer was too warm, we withdrew to VersaillesVersailles (historical), a royal palace outside Paris, in the neighbourhood of the Park. Our life resumed its normal course. Neither GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator nor I were fond of making much fuss about our weal and woe, our joys and sorrows. Work is the best doctor, I said to myself. And as often as my condition permitted, I went into the Parkgrounds of Versailles (historical), a royal palace outside Paris with my paintbox and easel, just as I did in former years. And LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 came as often as she liked, to distract GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and herself.

a1c08p061

"The only person who had a fairly clear
[Page 106]
perception of my condition was Claude LejeuneClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923. At that period he was a comforter to us both. Without the need of many words, he divined what was concealed behind the apparent calm which GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and I—and LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931—showed him on all his visits. When he came on Sunday, the old gaiety reigned once more among us.

a1c08p062

"If we had not had Claude LejeuneClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923 at that time . . .

a1c08p063

"He, like GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, had long realized that the only thing that was still vital within me was LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931. This they believed firmly. And hence they both encouraged LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 to come as often as she liked.

a1c08p064

"Claude LejeuneClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923 often took long walks with her through the Park of Versaillesgrounds of Versailles (historical), a royal palace outside Paris, forging plans for the future.

a1c08p065

"On one such evening, when the setting sun had turned to molten gold all the windows of the palacePalace of Versailles (historical), a royal palace outside Paris and the smooth surface of the water in the pond, they were strolling arm in arm along the terrace. Suddenly they heard a lady say to her companion in passing: 'Look! Two happy people!'

a1c08p066

"Most of our friends and acquaintances understood my condition much better than all the doctors whom we had consulted. Of course, their sympathy was limited to words. Nevertheless, their words often gave me moral support. They saw in me an overweighted man, whose sufferings were a real martyrdom, and not, as the French doctors declared over and over again, imagination and hysteria.

a1c08p067

"One day I met an elderly French painter in TrianonGrand Trianon (historical), a palace on the estate of Versailles outside Paris. We had known each other for years, but had not seen each other for a long time. He
[Page 107]
inquired sympathetically after my health. I answered evasively, without betraying the least hint of the real state of the case.

a1c08p068

"To my astonishment he made answer in my place.

a1c08p069

"I have been observing you for some time, without your having noticed it, here in the Parkgrounds of Versailles (historical), a royal palace outside Paris , when you are painting. I have been struck with the complete change that has come over you during recent years. Formerly you gave one the fresh, sharp impression of a healthy man. Now, if you will pardon my saying so, the effect you have on me is for all the world like that of a girl impersonating a man. You are ill. You are even very ill. You are undergoing a transformation. It is a fantastic idea; but what had never been before may become actuality to-morrow. We have known of cases of inversion for a long time, and doctors can deal with them. Why shouldn't you also be helped. It is to be hoped you will find a courageous and imaginative doctor. Everything depends on this. Of course, you will wonder how a poor painter can find the enormous fee for such an undertaking. Let us hope, nevertheless, that you will find a man prepared to assist you for humane and scientific reasons.'

a1c08p070

"These and similar expressions of understanding were like little oases in my progress through the desert, and they gave me courage and strength to prolong yet a little further my hopeless quest of a saviour.

a1c08p071

"During this last summer at VersaillesVersailles (historical), a royal palace outside Paris I began to notice that when I was standing in the street, or walking in the Parkgrounds of Versailles (historical), a royal palace outside Paris, people often stared at me
[Page 108]
in astonishment, even in the shops which I had been accustomed to visit for years. I had occasionally been aware of the same thing in ParisParis (historical), capital of France during recent years, but never to the same extent as was now the case in VersaillesVersailles (historical), a royal palace outside Paris. Moreover, Parisians are the most cultivated, the most indifferent and the most blasé people in the world, while the Versaillese are semi-provincial.

a1c08p072

"One morning when I wanted to reach the Parkgrounds of Versailles (historical), a royal palace outside Paris quickly, in order to paint, I took a short cut through a corridor of the Hôtel des ReservoirsHôtel des Reservoirs (historical), at that time a hotel on rue des Réservoirs near the park of Versailles, where several young waiters were standing.

a1c08p073

"I scarcely noticed them, but I had only gone a few steps when I heard behind me in pure Copenhagen slang the words: 'Look at that smart girl in trousers going to paint!'

a1c08p074

"Incidentally I may observe that the hotels in VersaillesVersailles (historical), a royal palace outside Paris are full of Danish waiters—I do not know why. Probably because German and Austrian waiters were mainly employed before the War, and, no doubt, owing to their knowledge of languages.

a1c08p075

"Enough! I behaved as if I had heard nothing, but went on my way pondering on the meaning of this compliment—and then it began to dawn on me why I had attracted attention everywhere in recent times.

a1c08p076

"A few days later the wife of our house porter, with whom I was on the best of terms, called me aside and said: 'Monsieur must not be angry with me if I confide to Monsieur that the shopkeepers in the neighbourhood where Madame and Monsieur make their purchases will not believe that Monsieur is a monsieur.' With eyes starting out
[Page 109]
of her head and mouth wide open she stood stock still while I answered with a smile: 'Madame, I am very much inclined to agree with the shopkeepers.'

a1c08p077

"These and similar incidents showed me that the situation was beginning to be paradoxical. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 could not show herself in the street on her own account, because she and I shared the same body—although not a soul took any notice of her whenever she walked abroad, apart from occasional pursuers. I, on the other hand, was stared at everywhere. Although I was dressed perfectly correctly as a man and took long masculine strides, people took me for a girl masquerading as a man.

a1c08p078

"It was not to be endured.

a1c08p079

"In the autumn, when we returned to ParisParis (historical), capital of France, I noticed that I was beginning to attract attention there also, although it mostly found expression in a somewhat more discreet manner. In the tube, or in the 'bus, or in the tram, I frequently caught looks and words from people who were watching me. The few remarks that I occasionally overheard were enough to convince me that the opinion of the shopkeepers in VersaillesVersailles (historical), a royal palace outside Paris was shared by others. With my thorough knowledge of the sophistication of Parisians in general it became doubly clear to me that I was really on the way to becoming a sensation—and this fact made me more and more nervous. My nerves, which had been weakened by the sufferings of long years, simply revolted: they could no longer bear the sight of me pursued everywhere by wondering and curious grimaces. This molestation by my fellows utterly depressed me.

Page 110
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"Thus I went again to the heart specialist with whom I was acquainted. GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator had called on him a few days before and had tried to explain to him my and LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's double life—and he had promised her to take me to another specialist in Versailles—although, personally, he regarded the whole thing as a fixed idea of mine, and exclusively as a 'diseased imagining without any physical foundation'.

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"'Your husband is healthy. His body is normal. I am speaking from a thorough knowledge, from a thorough examination of his body, madame.' Such was the wisdom of his concluding remarks.

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"This visit to the new specialist in Versailles was to be my last experiment, I had solemnly sworn to GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and myself, before we set out on the journey. On my arrival I immediately received the impression that the two doctors had settled their plan of campaign in advance: they wanted to try to drive out of me my hysterical crochets and whims. After an extremely superficial examination I was told point blank that I was a perfectly normal man without any defect whatever, and that all I had to do was to try to behave as a man with energy and good humour, in order to be able to lead once more the life of an ordinary man masculini generis. During this summary of their profound judgment they regarded me with scarcely veiled irony: they looked upon me as an hysterical subject, plainly as a fraud, and one of them, the 'new specialist', even hinted that I was really homosexual. This suggestion almost broke down my self-control. If GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator had not saved the situation by a ringing laugh, repudiating on my behalf
[Page 111]
the supposition as utterly absurd, I should have seized the fellow by the throat.

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"After this hopeless consultation, which profoundly depressed us both, my last reserves of strength were exhausted. And I swore to myself that henceforth no power on earth would induce me to consult new doctors. I would not run the risk of being degraded again for the amusement of the medicos.

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"I said to myself that as my case has never been known in the history of the medical art, it simply did not exist, it simply could not exist. Thus my doom, which was also LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's doom, was sealed. All that now remained for me to do was to go on living with all the patience that I could muster until the short term that I had set to my life had expired.

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"Outwardly, nothing changed in the routine of our daily life. I was even cheerful when friends or acquaintances visited us, but particularly so in my behaviour towards GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, as I was afraid that she might see through me. That she was seriously perturbed I could divine from her whole attitude. She kept her feelings well under control, and generally showed me a smiling countenance, behind which she was able to hide her despondency. She had become so restless. Frequently, when she believed that I was not observing her, she would look at me furtively with an air of such strange inquiry that I feared she suspected my plans.

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"During these weeks I had only one desire: to hear music. Concerts I could no longer attend, as I dared not see people. Consequently, I bought large numbers of gramophone records, classical and modern music, all mixed up anyhow, and during
[Page 112]
long evenings our gramophone played until far into the night. I swallowed everything that was music—gay and tragic, the most banal and the most solemn, the most melodious and the most discordant music—provided only it were music. It was my comforter, whether it moved me to tears or prompted me to join merrily in some chorus, or even invite GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator to dance with me.

a1c08p087

"At that time I lived on music. If I could not sleep, I fled to music. If I was unable to open my eyes in the morning, GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator would fetch the gramophone from the studio to my bedside. It was not that I was abnormally receptive or sensitive. I was never less sensitive that at this time. I merely felt utterly lost, abandoned to a fate which transcended human understanding. Music, the language of the soul, liberated me. Not to have to speak myself, not to have to give shape to my hopeless brooding, not to think myself nor clothe my vague ideas in words, was my daily and nightly prayer.

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"Formerly I had found distraction in reading. Now I never opened a book. What were the fates of strange persons to me, unless I could find consolation in reading about a person of my own kind? But of such a person no author had been able to write, because it had never occurred to any author that such a person could ever have existed. How could the philosophies of the Greeks and of the present time assist me, which only tell us of the thoughts of men and of the thoughts of women in separate bodies and brains and souls? PlatoPlato (b. 429 BC), an Athenian philosopher's Banquet . . . hitherto it had been my refuge. PlatoPlato (b. 429 BC), an Athenian philosopher was acquainted with persons on the borderline of both emotional worlds, that of man and that

                     EINAR WEGENER (ANDREAS SPARRE) AS LILI ELBE, DRESDEN,
                            MAY 1930. BETWEEN SECOND AND THIRD OPERATIONS.
EINAR WEGENEREinar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter; married to Gerda Wegener; died as Lili Elbe in Dresden, 1931 (ANDREAS SPARREAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter) AS LILI ELBELili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, DRESDENDresden (historical), city in Germany, MAY 1930. BETWEEN SECOND AND THIRD OPERATIONS.


[Page 113]
of woman. 'Mixed beings' they are called. But here in my sickly body dwelt two beings, separate from each other, unrelated to each other, hostile to each other, although they had compassion on each other, as they knew that this body had room only for one of them.

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"One of these two beings had to disappear, or else both had to perish. During these nights I was obsessed by the delusion that this body did not belong to me alone, that my share in this body grew less day by day, as it enclosed in its interior a being which demanded its existence at the price of my existence. I seemed to myself like a deceiver, like a usurper who reigned over a body which had ceased to be his, like a person who owned merely the façade of his house.

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"Now and then LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 would still appear, and GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator was delighted every time she came. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was gayer than I. Both of us knew this. And LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 knew it was in her power to comfort GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator. Sometimes, at GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator's request, she remained for several days. In LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's company GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator was more easily able to bear the nights. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 could fall asleep more easily. And when she slept, GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, too, was able to sleep. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 often wept without GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator remarking it. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 had always possessed her own dream world. She had always had such delightful dreams. Now her dreams had vanished. They revisited her just for a few nights. And every dream was a continuation of the previous one. It was winter, and she would dream of a coming spring which was very sunny. She told GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator these dreams, but she felt that they were only dreams. And then would come fear. The next night, however, a still more beautiful
[Page 114]
dream would drive her fear away. GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator once told me that she had secretly recorded many of these dreams in her diary. And she said this as if she were betraying a secret.

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"'LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 has dreamed you a romance,' I said to her, and turned empty away.

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"But this dream-romance became the favourite subject of conversation between GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 during those dark days, and these talks were the only thing that gave GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 new courage and kept alive their hope that a miracle would somehow happen.

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"Thus we reached February. ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques and ErnestoErnesto Rossini (fictional), modeled on Eric Allatini (1886–1943), friend of the Wegeners; married to Hélène Allatini were in ParisParis (historical), capital of France again. And one morning ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques took me with her to the strange man from GermanyProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist. Now it is the third of March. In less than two months it will be the first of May. That is the extreme limit of the period which I gave myself. Then Andreas SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter will exist no longer. Whether LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 will survive this day and live out her own life rests in the hands of Werner KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist."

Page 115

IX

a1c09p001

When AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter entered his hotel, it was almost morning. He stood at the window of his bedroom and gazed down at the square in front of the railway station. A number of taxi-cabs were there, a few belated pedestrians. A gleam of light was visible from the glass wall of the long narrow booking-hall.

a1c09p002

He was very tired.

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Slowly he undressed. He stood nude in front of the mirror. He thought of an expression he had used that evening: "I am like one who only owns the façade of his house." The mirror in front of him showed him the façade. It was the unblemished body of a man.

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After a few hours he awoke in a cheerful humour, took a bath, breakfasted, punctually paid, one after another, his last visits to the various doctors, and felt almost carefree. In the middle of the Leipziger StrasseLeipziger Strasse (historical), a major boulevard in Berlin he heard a child's voice whisper: "Look, mamma, a woman in man's clothes." He turned round, and encountered a frightened look in two girlish eyes, probably a ten-year-old, with a thick, fair pigtail; the child blushed a fiery red and clutched hold of her mother, who regarded him with as much astonishment as her daughter, and then hurried along with the child.

a1c09p005

A remarkable feeling of grim defiance welled
[Page 116]
up in him. Without meaning to do so, or even being aware of his action, he remained standing in front of a shop window, gazing inquiringly at his own reflection in the smooth plate-glass window. Irritably he muttered to himself. "There is nothing more to be done with me. There is nothing more to be done with me." Several times he repeated this sentence, and then looked at his watch. It was half past four in the afternoon, and at five o'clock he had to be in Professor Gebhard's sanatoriumGebhard’s sanitorium (fictional), possibly modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt’s private clinic at Augsburger Str. 66, Berlin.

a1c09p006

He found himself in Potsdamer PlatzPotsdamer Platz (historical), central square in Berlin and entered the post-office. In the huge telephone directory he looked up the number of Baroness SchildtBaronin Schildt (fictional), modeled on Marie-Anne von Goldschmidt-Rothschild (née Friedländer-Fuld, 1892-1973), known as Baroness Rotschildt; a friend of Kurt Warnekros, whom he really ought to have visited before, and asked to be connected. She was not at home. He despatched a few hasty lines by post:

a1c09l01ha

"Dear BaronessBaronin Schildt (fictional), modeled on Marie-Anne von Goldschmidt-Rothschild (née Friedländer-Fuld, 1892-1973), known as Baroness Rotschildt; a friend of Kurt Warnekros,

a1c09l01p01

"Do not be angry if you should not see me again. In a few minutes I shall be calling a taxi and proceeding to my own funeral-tomb, Professor Gebhard's sanatoriumGebhard’s sanitorium (fictional), possibly modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt’s private clinic at Augsburger Str. 66, Berlin. Whatever happens, think kindly of me. And if LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 should alone survive, do not let her be quite alone. I know that not all my men friends are her friends, but I should like her to inherit my women friends."

a1c09p007

He threw the letter into the bag of the postman who was just emptying the blue pillar-box. He pressed a shilling into the worthy fellow's hand. The postman looked at him astonished. Before the man could thank him, AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter was in the
[Page 117]
nearest taxi. He gave the driver the exact address of the nursing-homeGebhard’s sanitorium (fictional), possibly modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt’s private clinic at Augsburger Str. 66, Berlin, and punctually at five o'clock entered the sanatoriumGebhard’s sanitorium (fictional), possibly modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt’s private clinic at Augsburger Str. 66, Berlin.

a1c09p008

He was immediately led to the house-surgeonProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930, who regarded him with a benevolent mien.

a1c09p009

"I have just had a long telephonic conversation with my colleague KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist about your case," the ProfessorProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930 began. "Previously I had been talking to Doctor ArnsProfessor Arns (fictional), also Arno; possibly modeled on Arthur Weil, who invented a bold test and worked at Magnus Hirschfeld’s Institute in Berlin about it. He will be present at the operation which I have to perform. I should now like to have the opportunity of making your acquaintance. A personal impression is always very desirable."

a1c09p010

AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter answered to the point: "Please, ProfessorProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930, ask me what you like." But the ProfessorProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930 preferred a physical examination to all questions, requested him to undress and lie down upon an adjacent sofa of a type which had become very familiar to him since he had been in BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany.

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"Yes," declared the ProfessorProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930, after making a detailed examination, "in yourself you are entirely what you represent yourself to be in civic life, a man, but at the same time your body undoubtedly shows a female conformation. I am surprised at the state of affairs." And while AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter was dressing himself again, the surgeonProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930 paced the room thoughtfully, regarded the patient without pausing, glanced at his diary, and then said: "I know you are in a hurry. Come early to-morrow morning."

a1c09p012

"That is not convenient, because I am to be photographed by Doctor HardenfeldProfessor Hardenfeld (fictional), modeled on Magnus Hirschfeld (1868–1935), a German physician and one of the most influential sexologists of the time; Einar Wegener was examined at his Institute in March 1930 at eleven o'clock to-morrow morning before the operation, at Professor KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist's wishes."

a1c09p013

"Good," declared Professor GebhardProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930, after
[Page 118]
again consulting his diary; "four o'clock in the afternoon will also be convenient. To-day is Monday . . . then to-morrow, Tuesday, afternoon."

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"So we have a further reprieve," he said to himself, and looked at his watch. It was nearly half past six. A taxi-cab was in the neighbourhood. He gave the driver the name of his hotel, and spent this last night of all alone in the hotel bedroom. He felt that his body and nerves could not stand any more strain that day—yesterday's sleepless night, the conversation which had preceded it, the noisy, strange giant city all around him.

a1c09p015

"I am no longer a player myself. I am only a substitute for LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931. I must therefore be sparing."

a1c09p016

Tuesday morning AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter left his hotel early. It was a bright March day; he strolled along the FriedrichstrasseFriedrichsstrasse (historical), a street in Berlin, then turned into the broad highway of Unter den LindenUnter den Linden (historical), a street in Berlin, and found himself in the Pariser PlatzPariser Platz (historical), central square in Berlin near the Brandenburg Gate, facing the smooth, austere Brandenburg GateBrandenburg Gate (historical), an 18th-century monument, among the best-known landmarks in Berlin. This beautiful and almost classically perfect perspective was bathed in the keen, bright sunshine of March. The painter awoke in him. He went into TiergartentheTiergarten (historical), Berlin’s largest park, a popular meeting-place for homosexual men at the time. Sunshine and budding vegetation everywhere. And the dead leaves were glistening like bronze. He strolled along a path which led to a lake, on which ducks were swimming. The branches of lofty trees were reflected on the surface of the water.

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He had never been there before. He absorbed the picture. He thought of the many morning hours of his past life as a painter, spent far from towns and people, and he blessed the fate which had made him a painter, a creature of utter
[Page 119]
simplicity who surrendered himself fully to the enjoyment of the moment. Not to lose this precious moment was the impulse which found release when he painted. He usually painted feverishly, and could scarcely wait to catch the picture while it presented itself to his gaze, this gaze which was purified by the winds of travel, which saw more than the vacant stare of others, and which was brighter than that of others. Clairvoyant. How fond he had always been of this word, and how it recurred to him at this moment!

a1c09p018

He had always been one with this intangible and restless something, this play of light and shade, of claire-obscure, with colour and form. His attitude had been like that of a sly bird-stalker who laid in ambush and knew all the calls that would allure what he sought.

a1c09p019

Thus he had created his pictures, spellbound on the dead canvas with dead colours, until what he had divined with his eyes suddenly began to take on a life of its own. . . . Captured echoes, he had then usually confessed to himself. My pictures are only feeble echoes . . . He had been happy and very humble, like an initiate. And these hours had been the only real and genuine joys of his life. These joys had belonged to him, to him alone, he could not have shared them with, nor could he have stolen them from, any other person. They had been exclusively his wealth, his property. Could he transmit this property, this wealth? This question had never occurred to him before. Can one transmit joy? The joy of painting? For him, Andreas SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, these joys had gone beyond recall. And if LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 should survive him,
[Page 120]
would she feel any desire to paint? Would he be able to bequeath her as a heritage this joy, this blissful feeling of creative capacity, as a slight compensation for the life he had stolen from her, for the many youthful years he had deprived her of? His consciousness of guilt which so often weighed heavily upon him would be thereby lessened.

a1c09p020

He must now think of LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, who had such different inclinations from his; but why now think of inheritance? What great thing had he ever accomplished? True, he possessed a small token which he had to share with nobody: the golden "palm" of the Paris AcademyEcole des Beaux Arts (historical), École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts, the most famous school of the fine arts in Paris. Oh, vanity!

a1c09p021

He wondered whether it was not time to return. He was standing upon an elegant lightly balanced bridge, whence he could look over a wide canal which poured its masses of water over a sluice drawn half-way up, so that it hissed and glittered like a miniature waterfall.

a1c09p022

"I am just like one who is trying to sail under a waterfall," he reflected, "and I feel the current catching hold of me, and I no longer know whither the voyage is leading. Perhaps into complete destruction. . . . Yet . . . now, half-way, the boat cannot be left. The resolution is taken. I cannot go back."

a1c09p023

Half an hour later he was at Dr. Hardenfeld'sInstitute for Psychiatry (fictional), modeled on the Institut Für Sexualwissenschaft (Institute for Sexual Science) in Berlin, founded by Magnus Hirschfeld in 1919; Einar Wegener was initially examined there, waiting for the photographer.

a1c09p024

A lady, HardenfeldProfessor Hardenfeld (fictional), modeled on Magnus Hirschfeld (1868–1935), a German physician and one of the most influential sexologists of the time; Einar Wegener was examined at his Institute in March 1930's assistant, then came to him in the waiting-room, and began a conversation with him. He merely listened. She was tactful, and he felt that whatever she said was not dictated by curiosity or importunity.

Page 121
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"Your case is a novelty for us here. And what adds to the interest which we take in you for scientific reasons is the fact that you are an artist, an intellectual, and therefore able to analyse your own feelings, your own emotional life. You will experience the unprecedented and incredible thing: first to have lived and felt as a man, and then to live and feel as a woman. I am reminded of that Roman emperor who took his life because he could not achieve what is now your fate."

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At length the photographer arrived. When AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter left Dr. Hardenfeld's institutionInstitute for Psychiatry (fictional), modeled on the Institut Für Sexualwissenschaft (Institute for Sexual Science) in Berlin, founded by Magnus Hirschfeld in 1919; Einar Wegener was initially examined there, he invited himself to a "farewell breakfast". With great care he selected an appropriate restaurant for this purpose in the West End.

a1c09p027

Then he repaired to his hotel, paid his bill, and proceeded to ThomasiusstrasseThomasiusstrasse (historical), a street in the residential section of Berlin, to bid farewell to his friends.

a1c09p028

"You don't look exactly like a victim," affirmed friend NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 the moment he entered the room.

a1c09p029

"Nor do I feel like one—on the contrary," laughed AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter.

a1c09p030

While IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 wrung her hands: "But, AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, in a few hours you are going to be operated upon, and you come here with a cigar in your mouth almost as black as a crow."

a1c09p031

Before he was aware of her action, she had snatched the cigar out of his hand.

a1c09p032

"Please, I have just come from the last meal before my execution, or, speaking more correctly, I have celebrated in the most literal meaning of the words the enterrement de ma vie de garçon."

a1c09p033

IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 took his hand. "I have not been a nurse for nothing; I know how one should behave before
[Page 122]
an operation. Certainly not as you are doing, AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter. It is a stupid boyish trick to go and feast. It is putting on airs. And now NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 will go with you to the nursing-homeGebhard’s sanitorium (fictional), possibly modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt’s private clinic at Augsburger Str. 66, Berlin."

a1c09p034

And so it fell out. Without a cigar, AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter entered the sanatoriumGebhard’s sanitorium (fictional), possibly modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt’s private clinic at Augsburger Str. 66, Berlin under his friend's supervision.

a1c09p035

The operation sister received the two gentlemen, conducted them to a room next to the operating-theatre, the door of which stood open. A few nurses appeared to be making everything ready for a new operation. A strong odour pervaded the place.

a1c09p036

Professor GebhardProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930 was, unfortunately, unable to arrive until nearly six o'clock, and the gentlemen must therefore have a little patience. They would be notified in due course.

a1c09p037

The time was scarcely four. Niel's face assumed an expression of utter despair. "I can't stand waiting here two hours," he said almost contritely, and intimated that he would like to spend the period of waiting with the patient in the large café situated close at hand.

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When they had found seats in the café opposite the newspaper stand, AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter detected a few yards away from them a red-haired cripplethe Cripple (fictional), no known historical model. We chose this epithet over “newspaper boy” or “red-haired fellow” because it is precisely his hump that makes this character important to Andreas., a newspaper boy. AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter sprang up in a trice and moved backwards towards the cripplethe Cripple (fictional), no known historical model. We chose this epithet over “newspaper boy” or “red-haired fellow” because it is precisely his hump that makes this character important to Andreas., who observed this proceeding with astonishment, for which he received a shilling from AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, and then another shilling after AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter had touched his very solid hump.

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"My dear NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938," he then said by way of answer to his friend's astonished look, "I call that friendship! To bring me in the presence of such a splendid
[Page 123]
hump at the eleventh hour. For you know, of course, that such a fellow infallibly brings one luck. A superstition, for aught I care, but now I feel invulnerable. To touch a manly hump works wonders, but a female hump the contrary."

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"Which we will whet with a noble drop of Rhenish wine, as a burial drink so to speak, according to the good old Nordic custom." And already AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter had ordered from the head waiter a bottle of the very best vintage. "But three glasses, please."

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"Three?" enquired NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938.

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"Of course; the cripplethe Cripple (fictional), no known historical model. We chose this epithet over “newspaper boy” or “red-haired fellow” because it is precisely his hump that makes this character important to Andreas. must drink with us." Nor did the red-haired fellowthe Cripple (fictional), no known historical model. We chose this epithet over “newspaper boy” or “red-haired fellow” because it is precisely his hump that makes this character important to Andreas. want asking twice. "The like of us is used to plenty of sorrow," replied the hunchbackthe Cripple (fictional), no known historical model. We chose this epithet over “newspaper boy” or “red-haired fellow” because it is precisely his hump that makes this character important to Andreas., making a low bow. He seized the proffered glass, and clinked it with that of AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter: "Your health, my dear sir. May your good soul long survive you!"

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"The fellow speaks like a prophet," cried NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938. But AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter clasped the red-haired cripplethe Cripple (fictional), no known historical model. We chose this epithet over “newspaper boy” or “red-haired fellow” because it is precisely his hump that makes this character important to Andreas. in his arms, then released the astonished man and raised his glass. "So be it!" And he clinked his glass with that of the hunchbackthe Cripple (fictional), no known historical model. We chose this epithet over “newspaper boy” or “red-haired fellow” because it is precisely his hump that makes this character important to Andreas.. When AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter and NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 at length departed, the red-haired cripplethe Cripple (fictional), no known historical model. We chose this epithet over “newspaper boy” or “red-haired fellow” because it is precisely his hump that makes this character important to Andreas. gazed after them, shaking his head.

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In the room of the nursing-homeGebhard’s sanitorium (fictional), possibly modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt’s private clinic at Augsburger Str. 66, Berlin which was awaiting AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter lights were already burning. A nurse ushered him in, took the patient's personal particulars, hung a thermometer over the bed, and requested AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter to lie down immediately. The doctors would soon put in an appearance.

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"I suppose it is best that I should go at once," inquired NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938.

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter nodded. "Well, old chap, so long, and I
[Page 124]
will do all I can to fulfil the red-haired fellowthe Cripple (fictional), no known historical model. We chose this epithet over “newspaper boy” or “red-haired fellow” because it is precisely his hump that makes this character important to Andreas.'s prophecy."

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NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 was about to say something more, but AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter pushed him to the door. A brief handshake, and AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter was alone.

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He paced up and down. Once, twice, thrice. Without knowing it he began to count his steps. So the room was seven paces long and six paces wide. Then he sat on the bed. He regarded the room. A room in a nursing-home like countless others. Bright walls, and bed and table and cupboard and the two chairs likewise painted a light colour.

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And then he began to undress very slowly. Suddenly it occurred to him that he, Andreas SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, was probably undressing for the last time . . . that what was now taking place was a farewell to coat and waistcoat and trousers and so on and so on. For a lifetime these coverings of coat and waistcoat and trousers had enclosed him. He contemplated the articles of clothing, one after another, as he took them off; he hung the coat over the waistcoat, and then both upon the hanger in the cupboard, as he had been accustomed to do since . . . yes, since when? He stretched the trousers in the trouser-press, and looked at one article after another, and stroked each in turn. "What will become of you? What will become of me? Which of us here will survive the other? I—myself? I—you? . . . Coat, waistcoat, trousers, shoes, underclothes, socks. . . ."

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And he picked up his hat off the table. "You too. I had almost forgotten you. Who else have I forgotten?" And he slipped his hand in the inside
[Page 125]
pocket of his coat, took out a picture, and stood it on the table against the wall. "GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator," he said, and started to stroke the picture. A knock was heard and the door was opened. Professor GebhardProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930 entered, accompanied by his assistant doctor. A few questions were addressed to AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, with the result that, to his surprise, the performance of the "first operation", which involved no danger whatever, as the ProfessorProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930 explained, had to be postponed to the following morning. "'Gravol' is what you call such farewell celebrations in the North," laughed the ProfessorProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930. "Your friend has already betrayed to me the Rhenish wine. Congratulations! You seem to know your way about there. But operations of this kind are best performed on an empty stomach. In a few hours' time we will give you a sleeping-draught, so that the time between now and to-morrow morning will not seem too long to you. And now, courage." A handshake—and AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter was again alone.

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"So it's always wait, wait, wait, wait," he said to himself. "However, much patience must one have," he said, addressing the portrait which stood on the table next to his bed.

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"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator." . . . More he could not say; he leaned back on the white pillows, stared at the ceiling, and felt tired.

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He had struggled to the goal. He became sensible of the bustle of the day here in BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany. Now he had to confess that he was at the end of his forces. And the last remnant of his masculine pride, which he had been dragging about with him in this strange million-headed city like a cuirass, fell away from him.

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"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, it's a good thing you can't see me now."

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No weakness . . . stick it out.

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He had laid a writing-pad and fountain-pen on the table. He took a sheet of paper and wrote:

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"BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany,

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"4th March, Tuesday evening.

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"Dearest GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator,

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"To-morrow I shall be operated upon. The ProfessorProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930 says the operation in question is only a minor one, involving no danger. Consequently I have not besought you to come to me. Should it, however, turn out otherwise, I will tell you now that I shall have thought only of you every hour, every minute up to the last moment. My last wish is that your future should be happy—that you should inherit my fundamentally joyous temperament. Thousand kisses from LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931.

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"Yours, AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter."

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When IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 entered his room an hour later, he gave her the letter and asked her to give it to GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, in case.

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"You great booby, I have known all along from NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 that everything will be all right. I have even gone to the café and taken a few flowers to your somewhat unusual guardian angelthe Cripple (fictional), no known historical model. We chose this epithet over “newspaper boy” or “red-haired fellow” because it is precisely his hump that makes this character important to Andreas.." He went as red as a turkey and said: "This is the luckiest day I have had."

a1c09p059

At ten o'clock the assistant doctor entered again. He gave AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter the promised sleeping-draught. Then the nurse appeared, tidied up the room, and switched off the light.

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They let him sleep on until the middle of the
[Page 127]
morning, when the doctors were expected to arrive. He had hardly time to make a hasty toilet before Professor ArnsProfessor Arns (fictional), also Arno; possibly modeled on Arthur Weil, who invented a bold test and worked at Magnus Hirschfeld’s Institute in Berlin was standing beside the bed and requesting him to sign a declaration that he, Andreas SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, desired to be operated upon at his own risk, and that Professor GebhardProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930 was relieved of all responsibility in the event of an unfavourable outcome.

a1c09p061

"With pleasure," he declared, and he immediately signed the document which was addressed to some high authority, and which said in effect: "In case I die, I renounce all right to make any difficulties hereafter." "But may I not add a few words of thanks to the German doctors," he asked suddenly, "who are going to make an attempt to save me?"

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This request was laughingly declined, and then the ProfessorProfessor Arns (fictional), also Arno; possibly modeled on Arthur Weil, who invented a bold test and worked at Magnus Hirschfeld’s Institute in Berlin announced: "The operation will take place in a few minutes. I am present at the desire of Professor KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist, so good luck." He then withdrew.

a1c09p063

When AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter was again alone, he wrote yet another letter:

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"My dear Professor KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist,

a1c09l03p01

"At the last moment before my operation I yield to an impulse to express to you my heart-felt thanks. Since the day when I met you in ParisParis (historical), capital of France I have been hopeful, and here in BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany, where I know none of the doctors who have examined me and assisted me, an invisible power seems to have smoothed all my paths. I know that you are this invisible power, and that whatever good things have come my way have emanated from you. Whatever the result
[Page 128]
may be, I want you to know that I am enormously grateful for all you have done for me.

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"Your attached Andreas SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter."

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Now everything was in order.

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A moment later the assistant doctor entered the room.

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When AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter woke up again, in violent pain, it was almost noon. He opened his eyes with a shriek. Gradually he realized that he was lying in his bed. It seemed to him as if he had been crying out for a long time, as if he were resisting something. Two nurses were standing beside him and speaking soothing words. When he recovered consciousness he felt the pains growing more violent. With an effort he regained control of himself and clenched his teeth. He would leave off screaming. And, in fact, he screamed no more.

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"Did I make much noise?" he inquired.

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"Well, just a little," said one of the nurses with a smile, "and the strange thing was that your voice had completely changed. It was a shrill woman's voice."

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Then Professor GebhardProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930 came in and took AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter by the hand. "It went off splendidly. Moreover, I must congratulate you. You have a splendid soprano voice! Simply astounding."

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Towards the evening he was awakened by a fit of coughing. It seemed as if his whole body were being torn asunder. The coughing was terrible. He had tried to suppress it, but without success.

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At last the fit was over, and he lay exhausted. The nurses wiped the perspiration off his forehead. "You must have smoked a lot?" she asked. "Perhaps even yesterday."



                  LILE ELBE, WOMEN'S CLINIC, DRESDEN, JUNE 1930 (AFTER THE OPERATION)
LILE ELBELili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, WOMEN'S CLINICMunicipal Women’s Clinic (fictional), modeled on Staatliche Frauenklinik in Dresden, directed by Professor Kurt Warnekros at the time, DRESDENDresden (historical), city in Germany, JUNE 1930 (AFTER THE OPERATION)

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On the table by the bed lay a cigarette-case.

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"Throw them out of the window, Nurse. I will never put a cigarette or cigar in my lips again." The nurse smilingly removed the cigarette-case. "Don't forget your vow!"

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"I swear it to you and to me." And he thought of the cigar which IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 had taken from him yesterday. It was the very last cigar which AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter had smoked.

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Fresh fits of coughing in the course of the evening deepened his sudden hatred of tobacco to such an extent that the very idea of tobacco filled him with nausea. And this fanatical aversion from the enjoyment of tobacco in every form he inherited from LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931.

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NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 was admitted to him for a few moments.

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"You're going on fine, what?" he began immediately.

a1c09p078

"Oh, yes." More than that AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter could not bring himself to say. NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 looked at the nurse in astonishment.

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She whispered to him: "I suppose you are surprised at the clear voice."

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NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 nodded. "I cannot recognize it."

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Then he sat on the one chair next to the bed. "IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 sends you her greetings. Otherwise . . ."

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The nurse gave a hint. NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 stole out of the sick-room. And AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter whimpered: "Nurse, give me an injection. . . ." It was not the only one he had during the night. It was an endless agonizing night. Not until dawn did he manage to go off into a short heavy sleep. By the time he was fully awake, about noon, he felt as weak as one who had been wandering through a desert. But the pains seemed to have become more remote.

Page 130
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Only now and then the question would surge up in his mind, "Who am I? What am I? What was I? What shall I become?"

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Soon afterwards IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 came—with flowers and a large bottle of eau-de-Cologne. Flowers! How their scent transformed the sick-room!

a1c09p085

"Drench me with eau-de-Cologne, IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938! Sprinkle it all over the room!" he cried, almost beside himself with joy.

a1c09p086

Then she sat on the bed next to him and began to talk in confident tones. She, who had previously always addressed him as "you" now used the more intimate "thou". He did not realize until many days later that during these first days she never once called him by any name.

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Each day she came to see him with flowers and comforting words. So one day, two days, three days passed. AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter slept most of the time. No dreams came to him in the long nights, through which he was assisted by sedatives. And every morning IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 was with him with fresh flowers.

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One day she brought with her a perfectly magnificent spring bouquet.

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"This time you must not thank me. The floral greetings are from a good friend."

a1c09p090

"From Claude LejeuneClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923?"

a1c09p091

IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 nodded.

a1c09p092

She opened the note attached to the bouquet and read:

a1c09p093

"Each flower of my bouquet is a greeting to LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931."

a1c09p094

For a long time the flowers concealed the
[Page 131]
invalid's eyes, and even IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 could not see that his eyes were weeping scalding tears.

a1c09p095

"Will ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923 ever find her again?"

a1c09p096

"Whom?"

a1c09p097

"LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931."

a1c09p098

Saying which, the invalid handed IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 a card, on which he had scribbled a few lines.

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"Did you write this?" she asked.

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"Yes, IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938."

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"But then she is there already; ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923's LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931. Just look."

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He gazed at the card and failed to recognize his writing. It was a woman's script.

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IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 hurried out and met the assistant doctor, who was standing in the corridor. She showed him the card: "What do you think of this, Doctor. No man could have written it?"

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"No," said the astonished doctor; "no, you are quite right. One thing after another is pushing out."

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"One thing after another."

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AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter distinctly heard the words.

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And the doctor answered: "Haven't you noticed the voice is completely altered? It has changed from a tenor into a clear soprano."

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When AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter was again alone, he spoke softly to himself. He wanted to listen to his own voice. But drowsiness overcame him and he fell asleep once more.

a1c09p109

He woke up suddenly in the middle of the night. A terrible shriek startled him. At first he thought that he had himself screamed. He clenched his teeth. But the screams were heard again. No, he had not screamed. It was like the shriek of a tortured animal. He could not stand it any longer.
[Page 132]
"Someone is being murdered! Help, help!" he cried, and reaching out his hand, pressed the bell. The door was flung open, the light switched on. A nurse stood in front of him. "What is the matter with you?"

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"With me?" Once more the screams rang out.

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"I was so terrified, Nurse. Is somebody dying?"

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The nurseclosed the door and drew the heavy felt curtains along. . . . "A young woman has given birth to a child. . . a sweet little girl. . . .I suppose you never realized what a difficult thing childbirth is?"

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The next morning IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 arrived early.

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"Who do you think is coming in a day or two?" she cried, as she entered the room.

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"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator?"

a1c09p116

"Yes, here is her letter."

a1c09p117

He had to extract the letter from a huge bouquet, and was still reading it when Professor GebhardProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930, accompanied by the assistant doctor, came into the room.

a1c09p118

"Tell me, please, DoctorProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930," exclaimed AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, "when shall I be able to get up?"

a1c09p119

"Why the haste? You are doing very well here in bed amid flowers and soft hands."

a1c09p120

"But there is a hurry, DoctorProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930. In three days my wife will arrive."

a1c09p121

"Your wife?" The ProfessorProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930 was taken aback. "All right, then, but have a little patience. Madame will certainly find you somewhat changed."

a1c09p122

Then he hurriedly left the room with his companion.

a1c09p123

"Did I do anything absurd, IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938? The ProfessorProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930 looked at me with such an amused expression."

a1c09p124

"Stupid LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931!" was the only answer that IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 could think of.

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X

a1c10p001

Three days later GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator arrived early in the morning.

a1c10p002

The nurse on duty knew at once who she was.

a1c10p003

A few moments later she was in the sick-room.

a1c10p004

GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator stood in the middle of the room with outstretched arms, and could not stir. She was struggling with her tears. She wanted to throw him a gay greeting, but sank down sobbing by the side of the bed.

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Late in the evening, when she was alone with the turmoil of thoughts and sensations that assailed her, GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator wrote the following letter to their friend in ParisParis (historical), capital of France, Claude LejeuneClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923:

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"I can only hint at what I have been through to-day. I thought I should find AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter. AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter is dead, for I could not see him. I found a pale being. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, and yet not LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 as we had known her in ParisParis (historical), capital of France. It was another. New in voice and expression, new in the pressure of her hand, unspeakably changed. Or was it a being who is in process of finding herself? No doubt the latter is the case. So womanly and untouched by life. No, womanly is not the right word. Maidenly, I ought to say. Perhaps childish, fumbling with a thousand questions in the dark.
[Page 134]
A 'nova vita'. I cannot find words to express my meaning. I have been shaken to my depths. What a fate, ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923! A fit of uncanny shuddering grips me whenever I reflect upon it. It is a mercy that LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 herself is too weak now to look backward or forward. She is hardly able to realize the condition she is in at the moment. I spoke to the doctors.

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"The first operation, which only represents a beginning, has been successful beyond all expectations. AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter had ceased to exist, they said. His germ glands—oh, mystic words—have been removed. What has still to happen will take place in DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany under the hands of Professor KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist. The doctors talked about hormones; I behaved as if I knew what they meant. Now I have looked up this word in the dictionary and find that it refers to the secretions of internal organs which are important for vital processes. But I am no wiser than I was before. Must one equip oneself, then, with wisdom and knowledge in order to understand a miracle? I accept the miracle like a credulous person.

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"What I found here in the nursing-homeGebhard’s sanitorium (fictional), possibly modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt’s private clinic at Augsburger Str. 66, Berlin I would call the unravelling of the beloved being whose life and torments those of us who have shared with him all these many difficult years, have felt to be an insoluble riddle. Unravelling. . . .That's what it is. But the unravelling is not yet finished. I know it, and LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 suspects it. She is not yet allowed to see her lacerated body. It is bound up, and to herself and probably also to the doctors is still a secret which only KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist can unveil entirely.

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"Everybody here, the doctors, the nurses, our friends NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 and IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938, have candidly expressed to me their astonishment at the almost miraculous outward change in 'our patientLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931'—for they do not rightly know whether they ought to address this being as a man or a woman. What is their astonishment compared with mine? They have been seeing the invalid every day. But I, who had been parted from him only two weeks, should have scarcely recognized my beloved husbandAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter. And as it has fared with me, so it will one day fare with you and ElenaElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques and ErnestoErnesto Rossini (fictional), modeled on Eric Allatini (1886–1943), friend of the Wegeners; married to Hélène Allatini, to whom you must show this letter.

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"More than this I cannot write now, except to say that LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, this sweet new LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, lay in my arms like—oh, I must say it, because it is the truth—like a little sister, weeping many, many tears, and all at once said to me with a gentle sob in her voice: 'Are you not angry with me'— looking at me with so perplexed an expression—'because AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter has robbed you of your best years?' ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923, I was too shocked to utter a word—and when at length I could have said what I felt, I dared not do so. Not me, I thought, has AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter robbed, not me, but you, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, my sweet pale LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, of all your girlish years. You and I, ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923, and all of us, must help to compensate LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 for the fraud which AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter has practised on her."

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Many months later LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 read this letter. ClaudeClaude Lejeune (fictional), modeled on Claude Prévost, friend of Lili’s whom Gerda Wegener painted in 1923 gave it to her.

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The next morning—GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator had spent the night
[Page 136]
alone in an hotel—the head nurse proposed to put another bed in the sick-room, so that GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator could be near the patient until the departure for DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany, which was appointed to take place within a few days.

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"Splendid!" whispered GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, delighted, and taking the nurse by the hand she led her into an adjoining room, which stood empty. Swiftly she fetched a trunk which she had left in the corridor, opened it cautiously, and drew out a silk négligée.

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"How becoming you will look in it, madam!"

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"I? No, Nurse; it is a present from our Parisian friendElena Rossini (fictional), modeled on Hélène Kann Allatini (1887-1943), friend of the Wegeners; author of Mosaiques for our—patient inside. But not a word, please, until to-morrow morning!"

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And when morning came it found LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 sitting in the most charming Parisian négligée, still very pale and limp, but nevertheless quite gay, in the white sick-bed. And the assistant doctor could hardly believe his eyes. "Famous! Congratulations, miss! And if you promise to be very good and careful you may get up to-day for two hours and show yourself to your astonished friends. More than this we cannot permit for the time being."

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One nurse after another rustled in. Their astonishment was unbounded.

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Such was the reception accorded in the Berlin nursing-homeGebhard’s sanitorium (fictional), possibly modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt’s private clinic at Augsburger Str. 66, Berlin to the miracle performed upon this still very fatigued human being, a reception unmingled with curiosity or excessive inquiry; and when Professor GebhardProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930 paid a visit in the evening, he kissed the patient's trembling hand as if it were the most natural thing in the world: "Good day, mademoiselle," he said; "I congratulate you. You are on the right road."


PORTRAIT BY GERDA WEGENER
                            (GRETE SPARRE), WITH LILI AS MODEL
PORTRAIT BY GERDA WEGENERGerda Maria Frederikke Gottlieb Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator; married to Einar Wegener (GRETE SPARREGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator), WITH LILILili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 AS MODEL

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Then he noticed GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator for the first time. "Ah, madam, welcome."

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For a moment the ProfessorProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930 and GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator confronted each other mutely, not without suppressed emotions.

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Then LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 broke the silence. "Yes, ProfessorProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930, this is Madame GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, who . . ."

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The ProfessorProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930 gave a good-humoured laugh. "I know; who was married to Monsieur Andreas SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, who has slipped away from us in such a miraculous manner. Men are deceivers ever, madame." And with this happy expression the tension of a difficult situation was relieved.

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LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 surrendered herself to all this as if unconcerned, during her first BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany days. Observers could detect in her scarcely any trace of excitement, but rather a kind of relaxation. Moreover, she avoided replying to any look of astonishment on the faces of others by a word or even a gesture.

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"We must leave her in peace," GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator would then say to them in confidence. "She is resting. She is in a kind of transition. She is now getting ready to soar into freedom."

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During these days GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator began to keep a diary. Every evening she recorded therein her observations, and the experiences which crowded thickly upon her in the company of the new LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, in simple, almost fumbling sentences, seeking the way of her friend—this difficult, wonderful way upon which LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 had scarcely ventured to take the first step.

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Here is a leaf from the diary that she started:

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"LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 bears everything with incredible patience. True, she whimpers every morning, and even
[Page 138]
when her bandages are changed, when fasteners must be undone and done up, and when the still fresh scars are painted.

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"'This is all for my good,' she says with a patience which I have never seen her display before. She has only one wish, to go to DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany soon, to her ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist. She always calls him her Professor, or else her miracle-man. About the past she does not say a single word. It often seems to me as if she were without any past at all, as if she did not yet really believe in a present, as if she had been waiting for KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist, her miracle-man, in order to bring her to proper life."

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Here is another entry:

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"To-day IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 and I did some shopping without LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 knowing what we were about. We must make some preparations for the journey to DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany. In the afternoon we returned to LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, bringing with us a big cardboard box. 'Guess what we have brought you,' I said gaily. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 regarded us calmly, without a smile. 'I don't know.' That was her only answer. Then IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 opened the box. 'LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 . . .' said IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938, spreading out the coat in front of LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, and showing her the silk lining. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 looked at the coat, and said: 'But Professor KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist will send me away if I appear before him in this attire. He won't recognize me at all.' And her eyes looked so sad. Really, they are always sad, even when she smiles. AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter had quite different eyes. So had LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 in ParisParis (historical), capital of France. I think the eyes of the LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 to-day are not yet quite awake. She does not
[Page 139]
yet believe. . . . Or is it that she will not yet show that she believes?"

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On this day LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 wrote her first letter, to her brother-in-law in CopenhagenChristian (fictional), Andreas’s brother-in-law; modeled on Thomas Christian Thomsen (1883-1963), married to Einar’s sister Christiane and father of Einar’s nephew, Sigurd.

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"BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany,

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"14th March, 1930.

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"Dear ChristianChristian (fictional), Andreas’s brother-in-law; modeled on Thomas Christian Thomsen (1883-1963), married to Einar’s sister Christiane and father of Einar’s nephew, Sigurd,

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"It is now LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 who is writing to you. I am sitting up in my bed in a silk nightdress with lace trimming, curled, powdered, with bangle, necklace, and rings. Even my solemn ProfessorProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930 calls me LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, and everybody compliments me upon my appearance; but I am still feeling tired after the operation and the terrible nights that followed it. GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator has arrived, and has gone out to buy me a warm coat, so that I can travel to DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany next week. The operation which has been performed here enables me to enter the clinic for womenMunicipal Women’s Clinic (fictional), modeled on Staatliche Frauenklinik in Dresden, directed by Professor Kurt Warnekros at the time (exclusively for women). And now I feel I have courage for the major operation. A thousand thanks for the cheque. When we leave for DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany, all letters will be forwarded. Now I can say with a light heart: 'It matters not what pains await me, as I am so happy, and in a few months I shall be quite well, a blooming maiden.'

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Your LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931."

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"P.S.—I write this letter in great secrecy. Mention the matter to no one."

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It was wintry weather in BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany when some days later LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, muffled up in her new fur coat, was
[Page 140]
allowed to leave the nursing-homeGebhard’s sanitorium (fictional), possibly modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt’s private clinic at Augsburger Str. 66, Berlin for a few hours for the first time. The ProfessorProfessor Gebhard (fictional), modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt (1890–1965), a Berlin surgeon who performed the first operation on Lili Elvenes in 1930 had "prescribed" for her an automobile drive. " You must prepare every day now for the long journey to DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany," he explained. "Get some fresh air, mix with people, gather new strength."

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Mix with people. . . . At these words LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 listened attentively. A secret fear assailed her. She did not, however, betray her feelings. NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 and IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 came to fetch her away with GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, who did not stir from her side.

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When LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was outside the nursing-homeGebhard’s sanitorium (fictional), possibly modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt’s private clinic at Augsburger Str. 66, Berlin, firmly supported by NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938' arm, she was again overcome with fear. She looked as apprehensive as a prisoner breathing fresh air for the first time after a long spell of captivity. She glanced about her timidly, as if she feared that everything around her was a deception.

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She hesitated to proceed.

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"Come now, child," said GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator softly to her.

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"She is proud," laughed NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938, "and, of course, wants to go alone."

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"No, no," protested LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 in a frightened voice, "don't let me stand alone. Just a moment more. I must just taste this air once more. This air . . ."

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When LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was sitting in the car, huddled close to GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, she closed her eyes. "Don't bother about me. I must first get accustomed to all this."

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And thus she drove through the roaring life of the KurfurstendammKurfuürstendamm (historical), an upscale avenue in Berlin whose cafés and theaters were the center of Berlin’s cultural scene in the 1920s. Its Jewish-owned shops were targeted during Kristallnacht in 1938., like a somnambulist, silent and self-absorbed.

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The drive lasted two hours, and then GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator put the tired invalid to bed again. She was scarcely able to peck at the food that was brought her
[Page 141]
before she fell into a deep slumber, which lasted until the following morning.

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About noon NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 called for them both. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was in much better spirits. "I shall not bore you to-day, nor myself. I am really anxious to see people."

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"Aren't we such?" inquired NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938, amused.

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"But I mean strange people—yes, I want to see strange people again."

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"A brilliant suggestion," declared NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938, who resolved that they should dine with him, in order to celebrate the occasion. He stopped the car mysteriously outside a telephone-box and descended. He wanted to inform IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 of his intention. And wearing a still more mysterious expression he returned.

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In a quarter of an hour they reached their destination. IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 was waiting for the party on the doorstep. She pressed a big bunch of roses into LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's arms. "Be brave, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931. Now you will find what you are longing for." And then they divulged to her that in the flat was a young lady from CopenhagenKaren Wardal (fictional), also Warren; possibly modeled on Sascha Wamberg, a Russian-born Danish woman living in Paris at the time and depicted in several painting by Gerda Wegener, who knew neither LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 nor GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, nor—AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter, and to whom they had announced the visit of "a Frenchwoman imported direct from ParisParis (historical), capital of France."

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"For heaven's sake!" cried LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, almost beside herself.

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"No contradiction. You must now play the imported Parisienne," declared IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938. "My friend has been told that you understand neither German nor Danish. And she does not understand a word of French. I have told her that you have just had a serious illness, and are still a long way from
[Page 142]
recovery. You understand neither German nor Danish." NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 had already taken the reluctant LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 by the arm: "Go right in, my dear," he ordered, and before she could recover her equilibrium, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was sitting in the deep armchair of his study, the same armchair in which Andreas SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter a few weeks before had confessed the story of his life during the greater part of a night.

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Then the door opened and Karen WardalKaren Wardal (fictional), also Warren; possibly modeled on Sascha Wamberg, a Russian-born Danish woman living in Paris at the time and depicted in several painting by Gerda Wegener, a young CopenhagenCopenhagen (historical), capital of Denmark actress, whom GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 had known for many years, stood in front of LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 thought that her heart would burst. Her pale cheeks blushed crimson. Yet nobody observed any trace of excitement in her.

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"May I introduce," began IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 with a smile, Fräulein Karen Wardel WardalKaren Wardal (fictional), also Warren; possibly modeled on Sascha Wamberg, a Russian-born Danish woman living in Paris at the time and depicted in several painting by Gerda WegenerMademoiselle Julie StuartLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931." And then, turning to GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator: "You both know each other already."

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"Of course we do!" cried Karen Wardel WardalKaren Wardal (fictional), also Warren; possibly modeled on Sascha Wamberg, a Russian-born Danish woman living in Paris at the time and depicted in several painting by Gerda Wegener with enthusiasm. "How is your husband AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter?"

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And GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator explained that AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter was very well indeed, but, owing to pressure of work, had been unable to leave ParisParis (historical), capital of France. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 sat still, listened unconcerned at the conversation conducted in Danish, and answered every question which KarenKaren Wardal (fictional), also Warren; possibly modeled on Sascha Wamberg, a Russian-born Danish woman living in Paris at the time and depicted in several painting by Gerda Wegener asked in Danish, and which was rapidly translated by GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator or IngerInger Hvide (fictional), modeled on Vibeke Knudsen (dates unknown), married to Poul Knudsen from 1925 to 1938 into the most elegant French.

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The maid announced dinner. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was escorted by NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 into the dining-room. The conversation flowed from one language into another, and LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 behaved like a perfect Parisienne, as if she had never heard a Danish word in her life. She accepted as a matter of course KarenKaren Wardal (fictional), also Warren; possibly modeled on Sascha Wamberg, a Russian-born Danish woman living in Paris at the time and depicted in several painting by Gerda Wegener's compliments upon her "extremely chic Parisian costume"—this time
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NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 played the interpreter, and in her delight at this extravagant praise of her attire LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 forgot that her hastily improvised wardrobe was not of Parisian origin at all, but had come from a BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany costumier.

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She did not betray herself by even a look. True, she was obliged to bite her tongue many times, when she was on the point of suddenly joining in the conversation conducted in Danish. This comedy lasted nearly two hours. There was a good deal of joking in Danish, and LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 did not laugh until the point of the "Danish joke" had been translated to her in French.

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Then she could keep it up no longer. She was tired to death, and begged GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator to take her to her hotel.

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She bade a smiling farewell to Fräulein KarenKaren Wardal (fictional), also Warren; possibly modeled on Sascha Wamberg, a Russian-born Danish woman living in Paris at the time and depicted in several painting by Gerda Wegener.

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"The next time we meet I shall murder the French language," the young actressKaren Wardal (fictional), also Warren; possibly modeled on Sascha Wamberg, a Russian-born Danish woman living in Paris at the time and depicted in several painting by Gerda Wegener called after her. "Till our next meeting in ParisParis (historical), capital of France; and don't forget, GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, to give Monsieur AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter my kind regards."

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NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 accompanied GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 to the nursing-homeGebhard’s sanitorium (fictional), possibly modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt’s private clinic at Augsburger Str. 66, Berlin.

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"Well," he said, when they were sitting in the car, "I should not have thought it possible. Now I can believe in miracles!"

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LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 sank back utterly exhausted. In silence she let herself be driven again through the roaring cityBerlin (historical), capital of Germany, now twinkling with thousands and thousands of lights. When the car stopped in front of the clinicGebhard’s sanitorium (fictional), possibly modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt’s private clinic at Augsburger Str. 66, Berlin, NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 had to carry LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 to her room. He bore a sleeping burden.

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So ended LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's first encounter with a strange person.

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"And she did not recognize me," she said sadly.

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"But, child," answered GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, smiling, "that ought to make you glad. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, my new LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, does not know anybody in the world yet. You are starting life again."

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It did not yet dawn on GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator that LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's melancholy was inspired by fear of having no friends.

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XI

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The next morning news came from Professor KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist in DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany. Everything was ready for the patient's -@Editor: PLC reception. If the patient's physical state allowed, the journey to DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany might be undertaken immediately. But before going it was desirable to pay a visit to Doctor KarnerDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown, who had tested AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter' blood barely a fortnight previously, to enable him to take a test of the patient's blood after the first operation.

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GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator read the communication to LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 very slowly, her voice trembling with excitement.

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"We will leave to-morrow morning, of course," said LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931.

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"Good; but in that case we must call on Doctor KarnerDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown to-day." Saying which, GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator hurried out of the room in order to telephone to Dr. Karner's laboratoryKarner’s laboratory (fictional), no known historical analogue.

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When she returned a few minutes later with the news that Dr. KarnerDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown would not be available for another hour, she found LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 standing in front of the window holding Professor KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist' letter in her hand.

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"LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, we can start at once. We could walk part of the distance. This will do you good."

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"No, no, not walk. I cannot yet show myself in the street." And her eyes filled with tears.

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On the way GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator mentioned quite incidentally that the Doctor's assistant, to whom she had
[Page 146]
telephoned, had not understood her name. "It was, indeed, somewhat difficult to make it clear to her."

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It so happened that their taxi and Dr. KarnerDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown's car arrived at the laboratoryKarner’s laboratory (fictional), no known historical analogue at the same time.

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"Good day, DoctorDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown," said LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, immediately recognizing him and extending her hand.

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"Good day, madam," answered the DoctorDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown, momentarily surprised, as if he were trying to remember her name.

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LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 looked in front of her, then looked at GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, and at last took courage to say: "I have come from Professor Arn's Professor Arns' nursing-homeGebhard’s sanitorium (fictional), possibly modeled on Erwin Gohrbandt’s private clinic at Augsburger Str. 66, Berlin. I am Lili SparreLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931." It was the first time that she had pronounced her name. She heard herself speaking. A feeling of shame overwhelmed her. "Don't you recognize me, then, DoctorDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown?"

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"But of course, madam, of course," answered Dr. KarnerDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown, although it was obvious from his tone that he had not the least suspicion of the identity of the person standing before him.

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"I understand it is a question of taking a blood test," he continued nervously, and conducted the two ladies through the entrance hall and then into a waiting-room.

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"Yes, DoctorDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown; but are you still unable to recognize me?"

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The DoctorDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown only became more confused. "Sparre . . . Sparre. . . of course the name sounds familiar. Mr. SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter was here about a fortnight ago. He too was sent to me by Professor ArnsProfessor Arns (fictional), also Arno; possibly modeled on Arthur Weil, who invented a bold test and worked at Magnus Hirschfeld’s Institute in Berlin. But I cannot call you to mind, madam."

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"The gentleman and I, DoctorDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown, are, in fact, one and the same person," stammered LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931.

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"I beg your pardon." Completely dumbfounded, Dr. KarnerDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown looked from one lady to the other—then looked at his watch, and made a quick bow. "Oh, excuse me a moment—the ladies are foreigners, of course." And he bounded out of the waiting-room.

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Beside herself with confusion, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 looked at GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator. "I think I shall lose my reason."

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GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator laughed. "Your doctorDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown is certainly of your opinion. He did not understand a single word of what you told him."

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Suddenly LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 began to laugh. "But that is splendid. He too, then, did not recognize me."

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A nurse came into the room and requested LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 to follow her. The DoctorDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown was waiting for her in the laboratory, which LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 immediately recognized. He was holding a small instrument, similar to a morphia syringe, a transparent glass syringe. He smiled, still somewhat embarrassed. "Please, madam."

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She heard the title ringing in her ears . . . madam.

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"Please, madam, will you sit down, and turn up your sleeve above the elbow, so that I can get at the veins. So. . . . Much obliged, madam."

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With a distinctness never before experienced, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 caught every word he uttered. It seemed to her as if the words were floating in the room. Her eyes gazed steadfastly at the syringe, whose needle was boring cautiously into her arm; she saw the glass container slowly filling with her blood, and she fainted.

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When she came to herself, she looked around timidly.

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The doctorDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown was standing by the patient's chair with a smile on his face.

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"Have I been lying here long, DoctorDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown?"

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"Only a few minutes. Did it hurt as much as all that?"

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"Hurt? Oh, no. You must not think that I am usually so bothersome."

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"Of course. Mr. SparreAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter was not either. Sparre; if I understood aright, madam, your husband . . ."

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"Mine? Yes, yes." She was so confused that she did not know where to look.

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Then the DoctorDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown laughed. "So I did understand you correctly before. The German language is a very difficult language. What you said before sounded very amusing—as if you had said that you and your husband were one and the same person. Ha, ha, ha!"

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"But, DoctorDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown—"

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"Believe me, madam, even a German utters the most incredible stupidities when he tries to make himself understood in a foreign language. However, to go back to your husband—a stoic of a man, if you like. Now I remember, of course—although he looked ill and exhausted when he sat before me in the same chair that you are now occupying—he said not a word about his sufferings, declined even to hint at them. Instead of this we conversed in the way usual among men here, especially when one comes from abroad, that is to say, about politics, while I was tapping his blood. Of course, I know very well that this cannot be done without hurting, although your husband behaved as if—and really with success—while you, madam . . ."

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"Please, DoctorDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown."

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"But, madam, that is your vested privilege, as a representative of the weaker sex, while your husband is, if I may so express myself as a doctor, a prototype of the masculini generis. . . . "

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"My dear DoctorDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown"—LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 now broke into a ringing laugh; she had risen and was staring at him almost insolently—"if you only knew what a lesson you had read me with those words!"

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"Lesson?" The DoctorDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown chivalrously leaned over her. "But I have nothing but admiration for you, madam. You allowed the same blood test to be taken unbidden, in the same way as your husband—which, moreover, was very sensible. Only women can really do such things. A pain shared is a pain halved. Have I not come well out of the business?"

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"Splendidly, DoctorDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown. And now, good-bye."

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"Good-bye; and my kindest regards to your husband."

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"GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, dearest," said LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, when they were again in the open air together, "I have now got to the point of accepting with calm amusement the comic side of such a situation as I have just been in, without the flicker of an eyelash. If I did not do so, I should either go mad or lose myself."

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In the evening GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator wrote in her diary:

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"LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 is still trying to find her feet. People do not make it easier for her. By people, I mean the former acquaintances of AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter."

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"Come," said LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, "now I will take my first walk through BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany."

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So they both went from Dr. Karner's laboratoryKarner’s laboratory (fictional), no known historical analogue through the bustle of the great cityBerlin (historical), capital of Germany, jostling strange people. It was a fine spring day. The sky was cloudless and softly blue. The air felt like a prolonged caress. The faces of the people they met, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 noted with gay excitement, had such shining eyes. "Do I look like that, GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator?" she asked many times. And as they strolled arm in arm they often stopped in front of shop windows. She never grew weary of gazing at their display of silks, and she saw her reflection in every plate-glass window. "GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, tell me, do I look all right in my furs? Do I look any different from you?" And GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator smiled on her. "Child, remember your Dr. KarnerDr. Karner (fictional), historical figure unknown—and be glad that we have progressed so far as this."

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LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 desisted from her questions, but every now and then her eyes would dart a glance of inquiry. Questions innumerable were stirring in her breast; but she refrained from uttering them. She forced herself to show a smiling face, and whispered to herself again and again: "Nobody knows me and my fate here in the great cityBerlin (historical), capital of Germany. Nobody mistrusts me. Nobody. I can carry my secret about with me in peace. Nobody is betraying me. And it is a bright day with plenty of sunshine."

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Really tired, she clung to GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator's arm. "GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator," she said at once, "GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, you are not ashamed of me?"

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When GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator regarded her with surprise, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 behaved as if something had flown in her eye.

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"But what's the matter?"

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"Nothing, nothing; we go to DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany tomorrow, and I am glad NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 is going with us. Sometimes I feel so afraid. I don't know why."

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This feeling of dread became so alarming during the last night before the departure for DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany that GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator was obliged to summon the assistance of the head nurse.

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LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 wept and wept through many despairing hours. "I cannot . . . I cannot. . . .How can I look Professor KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist in the face? He doesn't know me. He doesn't know who I am. I am afraid. I would rather die first." When at length she could weep no more, she lay in her bed, staring in front of her.

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A thousand apprehensions assailed her. The railway journey to DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany, all among strange people . . . the arrival in another great city . . . the way to the clinicMunicipal Women’s Clinic (fictional), modeled on Staatliche Frauenklinik in Dresden, directed by Professor Kurt Warnekros at the time . . . more strange people, with curious eyes . . . and then the ProfessorProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist. How would he receive her?

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LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 did not know herself what was going on within her.

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GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator had long since packed the trunks, had found time for many cheery words, had talked about indifferent things, while LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was lying totally unconcerned.

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"And to-morrow I shall be with Professor KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist, and nobody can help me—nobody." She kept saying these words in a whisper. And when GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator told her that she and Professor KreutzProfessor Werner Kreutz (fictional), modelled on Kurt Warnekros (1882–1949), a German gynecologist had only a single thought, which was to help her, and that it was ungrateful to despond just now, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 only shook her head in a tired way. "GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, I know better. Nobody can help me. It is much too hard for a tired soul."

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In the morning, when GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator was still sleeping—she had not dropped off until very late—LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931
[Page 152]
rose, dressed, contemplated herself, and stole softly, so as not to disturb GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, towards the not very large mirror which GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator had brought with her and hung over the night table, converted into a dressing-table. She was not pleased with what she saw. Ugly and inexpressive the reflection appeared to her—a dull, tired, anæmic mask. She sat down on a trunk and buried her face in her hands.

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"LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931!" GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator's arms were round LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's neck. "Now you look like a mother anxious for her child."

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"Anxious for her child?" LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 slowly repeated the words. "Yes—for her ill-bred child, as if such a mother could ever be cheerful."

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So the day started, and its hours crawled slowly by. NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 was an early arrival.

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"Our LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 looks like an officer's miss," he cried, enthusiastic—"haughty and condescending! An incredible phenomenon."

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In half an hour the phenomenon will be on its way to its destination, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 reflected. The phenomenon. And she pulled herself together. Nobody should see tears in her eyes to-day. Nobody. She must empty her mind of all thought. Thus she was driven to the station, with eyes which looked as if they saw. But they saw nothing. In the waiting-room she let herself be persuaded to take breakfast with the others. She was obedient. "To-day I will have no will of my own, NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938; to-day I will do what you both order me."

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An abundant breakfast table was hastily improvised. "This spread," announced NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 solemnly, "is to celebrate LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's departure on her first overland journey."



                  LILI ELBE IN THE WOMEN'S CLINIC, DRESDEN, 1930
LILI ELBELili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 IN THE WOMEN'S CLINICMunicipal Women’s Clinic (fictional), modeled on Staatliche Frauenklinik in Dresden, directed by Professor Kurt Warnekros at the time, DRESDENDresden (historical), city in Germany, 1930

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The waiter had placed a pint tankard of Hofora in front of each. NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 raised his tankard towards LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, and GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, the dainty, elegant GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, raised, not without considerable difficulty, her tankard towards LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931—and LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 was no spoil-sport.

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"Skaal, my dears," she said, "or prosit, as we must say here!" And before NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 had clinked his tankard against LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's, she had taken a generous draught.

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"Bravo, bravo!" cried NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938, so loudly that many of the people in the waiting-room looked around them.

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LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 immediately put down her beaker. "Please, please don't excite attention." She was stretched on the rack all the time.

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Yet she wanted to be gay. Moreover, as she honestly acknowledged, the fresh aromatic beer had a glorious taste. And this refreshing breakfast with crusty BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany rolls and liver sausage and cheese, a real German morning meal—did not in the least resemble an invalid's diet.

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"It makes me feel quite a new being," she confessed. "It tastes like resurrection. If only it gets to that point. Prosit! Long live life!"

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When it was time for the train to leave, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, clinging all the time to NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938' arm, pushed through the crowd on the platform so quickly that GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator had difficulty in following them. A corner seat in a second-class compartment was found for LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931, while NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 and GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator secured seats opposite to her.

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With merry, wideawake eyes, which absorbed every trifle around her like a new experience, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 rode into her new life.

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The landscape between BerlinBerlin (historical), capital of Germany and DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany is a series of endless, monotonous plains, thinly wooded, and here and there coloured red, white, and yellow by small settlements, villages, townships and towns, broken only by occasional placid brooks and streams—a picture devoid of excitement, a panorama calculated to soothe and lull. Low overhead hung a blue-grey sky, while the fresh morning wind drove golden clouds merrily before it like young lambs just released from the fold. Then a large, bright green rectangle would swim into vision—a winter crop with the ears already sprouting, between silvering willow trees, while a dark islet of cloud lowered spectral overhead. Sharply defined on the eastern horizon was a church tower. Then the sun emerged from a heavy bank of cloud, and flooded the whole world with a golden light. The telegraph wires buzzing up and down in front of the carriage window. A flock of partridges ascending from a dark patch of marshland and disappearing into a silvery birch wood. A signalman's cottage with silver-birch trees and a few fruit trees, stunted and cropped, and fluttering between them multi-coloured washing. A woman pressing her hands on her hips, her eyes fixed on the train, beside her a fair child with a glaring red ball in her hand, and a brown Pomeranian dog squatting beside the child. Shoo—past! The woman's expression was plainly visible. A piece of blue- and-white washing was waving like a flag in her right hand. An unpaved country road curving towards the railway embankment. Two heavy farm-horses drawing a heavily laden cart. The driver lashing out with the whip. The sun gilding
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him and the whipcord and the tin lid of his bowl-pipe, lighting up even the puddles in the deep ruts of the cart-track. Behind a far-flung ridge tower factory chimneys, and white and greenish-yellow smoke-plumes wind into the blue until a breeze breaks them up and they become golden clouds.

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LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's eyes had become the eyes of a painter, and a tremor passed through her. "Those are not my eyes. They are AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter' eyes. Is he not yet dead within me? Can he give me no peace, then?"

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She closed her eyes. She could not understand why she was so afraid to look at, to grasp and to love the world, as AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter had done. Was it because she feared she would never get on to her own feet, never be loosened from—AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter?

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GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator and NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 had gone into the corridor in order to smoke.

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In the compartment there remained two German gentlemen of very correct appearance. The two corner seats by the door belonged to them.

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Up till then LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 had scarcely noticed her fellow-travellers. She had kept herself entrenched behind newspapers.

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Suddenly one of the gentlemen laid his paper down and the other gentleman followed suit, except that he almost solemnly folded up his newspaper. Involuntarily she looked at him, and he returned her look very deliberately. "Hm!" he grunted at least four times. The other gentleman flicked off some dust, and removed his light-brown, very solid gloves. A thick diamond ring came to light. He cleared his throat again. LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 drew her furs closer about her. She felt the look of the two "lords
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of creation" fixed upon her. She put on a very haughty expression.

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"Ahem," said the gentleman next to her. "Do you mind, madam?" She nodded her assent.

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He offered her a heavy cigarette-case, inlaid with gold: "It is, to be sure, a non-smoker; but both the other people—ahem."

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LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 smiled: "No, thanks."

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"Hm!" And the gentleman shut his case with a snap and deliberately put it away in his pocket.

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The gentleman opposite unfolded his newspaper.

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And LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 looked out of the window.

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A little dainty birch wood upon a hill under the sun. Two diminutive mother-o'-pearl clouds overhead, like wings which a child angel had forgotten in play.

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NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 had returned, and was again sitting in his corner seat.

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"Early spring," he said; "early spring, LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931."

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And GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, who also returned at this moment, repeated the word, "Early spring. . . . I never heard the word Vorfrühling before. A beautiful word. Oh to be out there painting as I used to! . . ."

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Then she broke off, avoided LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's look, and closed her eyes.

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For a whole hour they sat thus silent.

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In LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931's ears GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator's words still echoed: "Early spring . . . painting as I used to," and she completed the sentence, "with AndreasAndreas Sparre (fictional), modeled on Einar Magnus Andreas Wegener (b. 1882), a Danish painter."

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Was it jealousy which was now stirring in her?

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No, no; the idea was impossible.

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She leaned across to GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator—no one saw it, not
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even NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938, who had fallen asleep like GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, while the two strange gentlemen were standing outside in the corridor smoking—and laid her hand in GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator's lap. Then she rose and sat next to GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator, laid her head against GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator's shoulder and gazed out of the window again. Ranges of hills were billowing up, growing into small mountains, and new ones kept joining them, dotted with villas. And eventually everything became a confusion of villas and gardens and tenement houses—between which factory buildings reared their heads and streets opened like canals between columns of houses, while the columns of houses became great settlements full of pulsating life. Trams, cars, people, clamouring advertisements on blank walls, a wide ramification of railway lines on either side, trains with an endless line of coaches, a station on the right hand and the left hand, a continuous shuddering of the carriage as it slid rumblingly past the points.

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Then the train stopped.

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NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 woke up.

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"Shall we soon be there?" asked LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931.

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"The next station." She awoke GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator.

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When the train started again, all three of them were standing at the window. Now they were crossing the long bridge, under which the broad, dark river extended like a glistening velvet ribbon, and LiliLili Elbe (fictional and historical), legal name Lili Ilse Elvenes; born Einar Wegener (1882), died in Dresden, 1931 saw DresdenDresden (historical), city in Germany's domes and towers and roofs emerge from the shimmering water-surface. Slowly she looked up and saw that it was no phantasmagoria—this magnificent city on both banks of the River ElbeDresden (historical), city in Germany, ascending from the broad valley to green hills and the soft blue sky.

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She knelt on her seat and stared out and drank in the picture of this place of pilgrimage, longed for so ardently and vouchsafed her in return for so much suffering. And her eyes became too full and too heavy. She closed them, and pressed her hands against her heart. The tears she wept were the soft tears of faith. A feeling of boundless happiness flooded her whole being. "Now I am home . . . now I shall soon be home."

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NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938 laid his hand on her shoulder. "Child, child."

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"It is only for happiness, NielsNiels Hvide (fictional), modeled on Poul Knudsen (1889-1974), Danish lawyer and writer, friend of the Wegeners, married to Vibeke 1925-1938."

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GreteGrete Sparre (fictional), modeled on Gerda Wegener (1885-1940), an art deco painter and illustrator was standing beside her. She could find no word to utter, but many tears to shed.

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How LiliLili Elbe (fictional an