George Sand was the pseudonym of Amantine-Lucile-Aurore Dupin (1804-1876), and was a much admired French novelist and memoirist. She is equally well known for her much-publicized romantic affairs with a number of celebrities including Frédéric Chopin and Alfred de Musset. It was the way Sand turned her own love affairs into novels and stories packed with vehemence of spirit which endeared her to her audience. In The Marquise, Sand displays her instinctive feeling for the true sense of the "conte" or short story. She neither analyses nor explains the character of the old noblewoman who fell in love with an actor, she merely suggests the strength of passion in the cold, cynical, aged beauty. She leaves the listener's imagination vibrating with its own images thrown up by the hints she gives. A truly exceptional short story.