Stein, Gertrude, 1874-1946

Alternative names
Birth 1874-02-03
Death 1946-07-27
French, English

Biographical notes:

Gertrude Stein (b. February 3, 1874, Allegheny, PA-d. July 27, 1946, Neuilly-sur-Seine, France) was an American novelist, poet, playwright, and art collector. She moved to Paris and acquired a love for modern painting. Stein began building a personal collection of major artists, many of whom became her friends and formed the core of her regular salons.

In 1907, as Stein was struggling to establish herself as a writer, she met Alice Babette Toklas, a fellow American who had come to Paris. Within months of their meeting, Gertrude Stein and Toklas became inseparable companions.

Stein published her first book, Three Lives appeared in 1909. Stein and Toklas formed the Plain Edition press, which brought out several of Stein's previously unpublished works, including Before the Flowers of Friendship Faded Friendship Faded (1931).

In 1939 Stein and Toklas left Paris for the countryside, where they endured hardships and offered as much assistance and support to the Allies as possible. After the war they returned to Paris. In July 1946 Stein suddenly fell acutely ill and chose to have exploratory surgery. Before the operation, she dictated her will, leaving her papers to Yale, the Picasso portrait to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the rest of her paintings to Toklas. The surgery disclosed inoperable uterine cancer and she died a few days later on July 27, 1946.


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  • Authors, American
  • Women authors
  • Authors, American--20th century--Archives
  • American literature--20th century
  • Women authors, American--20th century
  • Art and literature
  • Modernism (Art)
  • Women authors, American--France--Paris--Manuscripts
  • Women authors, American
  • American history/20th century
  • Americans--France--History--20th century
  • Literature, experimental
  • Cubism and literature
  • Art, Modern--20th century
  • Art--Collectors and collecting
  • Modernism (Literature)
  • Opera programs


  • Authors


  • Paris (France) (as recorded)
  • France (as recorded)
  • France (as recorded)
  • Paris (France) (as recorded)
  • Paris (France) (as recorded)
  • Paris (France) (as recorded)
  • Paris (France) (as recorded)
  • France (as recorded)
  • France (as recorded)
  • Paris (France) (as recorded)