Forgotten sex symbol
The memory of humanity is amazing. The fact that this "courtesan and stripper" has become a real legend, sex-mystery, a dubious icon of his era, they know almost everything. Jokes, Russian comedies and just, sorry, porn - she has enough fame. But who saw at least one of her photos? But they abound.
The symbol of the Beautiful Epoch or the story of one courtesan - so it would be worth heading a story about the life of Margaret, better known as Mata Hari.
Born in 1876 in the Netherlands, Margareta Gertrude Zelle married the captain of the Dutch army at the age of 18. In 1897, together with her husband, they moved to the island of Java, where Margareta had two children.
Her husband was a cruel and aggressive alcoholic. In order to somehow get away from the joyless marriage, Margarete plunged into the study of Indonesian culture and traditions, including dance.
In 1902, after returning to the Netherlands, the Zelle family fell apart. The woman moved to Paris, where she soon found work as a circus rider. Sometimes she worked as a model and performer of exotic dances.
Making good money for the growing popularity of oriental shows, Margareta took on her stage name Mata Hari, which means “sun” in Malaysian, and invented an impressive legend about her past. The woman said she was an Indonesian princess, trained in Indian dancing and performing exotic rituals.
She skillfully used her attractive appearance, which, in combination with a rather loose character, made her a sensation on the dance scene. Of course, the dances did not always remain traditional and chaste. Sometimes the speeches of Hari were more like a striptease.
She admired the audience throughout Europe. Basically, of course, the male half, which she conquered dancing and provocative photo shoots. Soon, Mata Hari gained a reputation as an expensive courtesan.
She did have sexual relations with several men who held high positions in society, including diplomat Jules Cambon and Crown Prince of Germany.
Hari's career declined with age, but she continued to attend her “boyfriends”.The courtesan traveled a lot and often crossed the border. Because of this, the secret services during the First World War period paid attention to the woman.
Shortly before the start of the war, Mata Hari was in Germany. Her request to go abroad to Paris turned into a search and confiscation of a significant part of the property. She had to return to her homeland in Holland, where one of her lovers was able to provide her with housing.
Instead of waiting out the war at home, the woman went to Paris via England, which made her the object of close attention of the British special services. They were sure that Mata Hari was a German spy.
Meanwhile, in Paris, Mata Hari fell in love with a young Russian captain who was partially blind while serving in the French army. During a visit to the hospital to her lover, Mata Hari was confronted with an officer of the French counterintelligence. From the English, he heard that the dancer is suspected of spying.
After their meeting, the man offered the courtesan to use her connections and spy for France. Then Mata Hari agreed on the condition that she would be paid an impressive amount of money. She dreamed of earning enough money for a carefree life with her new lover.
On her first mission, Mata Hari went to Germany, once again paving the route through Misty Albion. In England, a woman was arrested and interrogated. Meanwhile, a French recruiter denied being acquainted with a dancer. In the end, the woman was released, and after a while she ended up in Madrid, completely aground.
Then she decided to seduce the German attache in the hope of gaining at least some benefit from this connection, be it information or money. She told him all the French gossip, while the failed lover, who suspected the spy of Hari, fed her outdated information.
On December 13, 1916, French intelligence intercepted a secret message from an attache who was actually fictitious and contained rumors told by a former dancer. According to the data, the information attache provided some agent under the code name H-21. The secret services branded Mata Hari as a double agent, and the Germans tried to find out in this way whether the woman was a French spy. As a result, the counterintelligence of Germany was convinced that it was right.
Soon, Mata Hari returned to Paris in the hope of receiving the promised money for the work, but was unable to contact her recruiter.On February 13, 1917, the woman was arrested by French intelligence agencies on suspicion of espionage.
The habit of inventing legends about her past during interrogation played a cruel joke with Mata Hari. She was constantly confused in the testimony. As a result, it turned out that the failed spy did receive money from representatives of the German special services. True, she did not gather information at all and considered this gesture as revenge for what happened to her at the beginning of the war. As a result, the court found Mata Hari guilty of espionage and sentenced to death.
The sentence was carried out on October 15, 1917. The execution involved 12 soldiers.