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Sidonie Gabrielle Colette

Who she is: Known simply by her pen name, Colette, she was a French novelist and performer in the early 20th century.

Why she's scandalous: Colette had various affairs with both men and women, including Mathilde de Morny, with whom she performed in "Rêve d'Égypte" at the Moulin Rouge. The pantomime was banned, after their onstage kiss almost caused a riot. She later had a notorious affair with her stepson Bertrand de Jouvenel, which began when he was only 16 years old and she was in her late 40s.

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