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Jeanne Calment's Biography

Jeanne Louise Calment was born in Arles, France on February 21, 1875 and died on August 4, 1997. That made her 122 years, 164 days old when she passed away - the longest confirmed lifespan.

Madame Calment officially gave up smoking at 117, but resumed having the occasional puff after her 118th birthday.

Well into her hundreds, she drank a glass of port before lunch and another before dinner.

Madame Calment once said: "I have an enormous will to live and a good appetite, especially for sweets."

She married in 1896, but her husband passed away in 1940.

When Madame Calment was 90 a lawyer called Andrei-Francois Raffray entered into an annuity contract with her (annual money in return for her flat when she died), which cost him a small fortune due to her longevity. Maybe he should have been a little more wary: Jeanne Calment's father lived to 94 and her mother to 86.

A great quote from Madame Calment is that she "is interested in everything, but not really passionate about anything."

The Maison du Lac retirement home where she lived was renamed after her.


Related biography: Henry Allingham


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