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Fantine

Fantine, a character in Victor Hugo's novel Les Misérables, in an 1886 painting by Margaret Bernadine Hall. In the novel, Fantine is a young orphan girl who is impregnated by a rich student, who then abandons her and their child Cosette. Forced by her poverty to become a prostitute, Fantine sacrifices her youth, beauty, and health in order to raise her daughter. After she dies, Cosette is raised by Jean Valjean.

Fantine has been described as the "quintessential mother" whose sacrifice serves the good of her child, and identified with "the saved and saintly prostitute". She has been depicted in numerous adaptations of the novel, including the musical and the 2012 film (in which she was portrayed by Anne Hathaway).

Painting: Margaret Bernadine Hall
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