Bonheur lived for fifty years with her female companion Nathalie Micas in the Château near Fontainebleau. The two women had been best friends since the age of twelve. After Micas's death many years later, Bonheur lived the last year of her life with the American painter Anna Elizabeth Klumpke while Klumpke wrote Bonheur's (auto)biography and painted her portrait. Upon Bonheur's death Klumpke inherited the estate. Because of these relationships, and Bonheur's failure to marry, it is often claimed in current scholarship that she was a lesbian.
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