It was, as they say, love at first sight. One day, on the train midway between Paris and Rouen, Claude Monet (1840-1926) happened to glimpse the passing countryside of a small village through the carriage window. The sight renewed Monet like a spring shower. Already in his 40s, he had been growing increasingly dissatisfied with his progress; he was also tired of his usual motifs as well as of his Impressionist companions. Almost immediately, he rented a house in the village and settled there, in 1883. That passing moment, as it turned out to be, was fateful: the village was Giverny. Joining him was what could only have been called an unconventional household: his two young sons, who had been left motherless four years earlier when Monet's wife Camille died, and Alice, wife of Ernest Hoschedé, Monet's patron, together with their six children. M Hoschedé, a Paris businessman seeking to rebuild his fortunes after a major economic downturn, spent most of his time away.
Southgate MT. Bend in the Epte River near Giverney. JAMA. 2006;295(17):1976. doi:10.1001/jama.295.17.1976
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