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Handwritten note from Princess Isabel (1907)

Handwritten note from Princess Isabel (1907)

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In 1907, Princess Elizabeth is grateful for the generosity of Paul Darblay, a well-known French businessman.

Handwritten note from Princess Elizabeth to Paul Darblay. One page, with the original envelope unstamped. In French. 13cm x 10.3cm. France, March 11, 1907. Excellent condition. Single piece.

Dear Mr Darblay,

I am touched and grateful for your generosity to my dear Boulogne.
My going to Me prevented me.

Its very affectionate.

Isabel Countess of Eu.

The Imperial Princess of Brazil (1846 - 1921), better known as Princess Isabel, is the daughter of Emperor Dom Pedro II. A liberal woman open to the world, in 1871 she signed the "Free Womb" Law, which gave freedom to the children of slaves and, in 1888, the Golden Law, which abolished slavery in Brazil. Both decisions provoked great opposition among coffee and sugar farmers. Brazil was the last country in the West to abolish slavery, which lasted three centuries, exploiting 12 million black Africans. From 1889, Princess Isabel went into exile in France, where she spent the rest of her life with her family.

The Darblay family is a powerful 19th century industrial family, who made their fortune in the mill and stationery business. It was part of what was called the "two hundred families", i.e. the shareholders of the Bank of France. The founders of this family's fortune are the brothers Auguste-Rodolphe Darblay and Ayme-Stanislas Darblay, who successfully acquired and operated mills and, later, a stationery shop developed by Paul Darblay, recipient of this note.

The Count d'Eu owned the castle d'Eu in Normandy, but he and Princess Isabel bought a mansion in Boulogne-sur-Seine with the sale of their property in Brazil. There, in a noble neighborhood on the outskirts of Paris, they welcomed distinguished Brazilians who came to visit them. We don't know what contribution Paul Darblay had to "cher Boulogne".

In addition to being entirely handwritten by Princess Isabel, and in perfect condition, it deals with the personal life, in France, of the illustrious daughter of Emperor Dom Pedro II. Anyway, the big signature is particularly beautiful.

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