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Famous Female Courtesans

Updated June 14, 2019 13.4k views7 items

List of famous female courtesans, listed by their level of prominence with photos when available. This greatest female courtesans list contains the most prominent and top females known for being courtesans. There are thousand of females working as courtesans in the world, but this list highlights only the most notable ones. Historic courtesans have worked hard to become the best that they can be, so if you're a female aspiring to be a courtesan then the people below should give you inspiration.

This list below has a variety of people, like Harriette Wilson and Dorothy Jordan, in it.

While this isn't a list of all female courtesans, it does answer the questions "Who are the most famous female courtesans?" and "Who are the best female courtesans?"
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  • Photo: Metaweb (FB) / Public domain
    Marie Dolores Eliza Rosanna Gilbert, Countess of Landsfeld (17 February 1821 – 17 January 1861), better known by the stage name Lola Montez (), was an Irish dancer and actress who became famous as a "Spanish dancer", courtesan, and mistress of King Ludwig I of Bavaria, who made her Countess of Landsfeld. She used her influence to institute liberal reforms. At the start of the Revolutions of 1848 in the German states, she was forced to flee. She proceeded to the United States via Australia, Switzerland, France and London, returning to her work as an entertainer and lecturer....  more
    • Age: Dec. at 39 (1821-1861)
    • Birthplace: Grange, County Sligo, Republic of Ireland
  • Photo: Metaweb (FB) / Public domain
    Harriette Wilson (2 February 1786 – 10 March 1845) is the author of The Memoirs of Harriette Wilson: Written by Herself (1825). Wilson was a famed British Regency courtesan who became the mistress of William, Lord Craven, at the age of 15. Later in her career, she went on to have formal relationship arrangements with Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, and other significant politicians....  more
    • Age: Dec. at 59 (1786-1845)
    • Birthplace: Mayfair, London, London, England
  • Photo: Metaweb (FB) / Public domain
    Veronica Franco (1546–1591) was an Italian poet and courtesan in 16th-century Venice....  more
    • Age: 475
    • Birthplace: Veneto, Eurasia, Province of Venice, Italy, Venice
  • Photo: Metaweb (FB) / Public domain
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    Liane de Pougy

    Liane de Pougy (born Anne Marie Chassaigne; 2 July 1869 – 26 December 1950), was a Folies Bergère vedette and dancer renowned as one of Paris's most beautiful and notorious courtesans....  more
    • Age: Dec. at 81 (1869-1950)
    • Birthplace: La Flèche, France