A love story on the High Seas

When Rose-Marie Pinon married navy man Louis de Freycinet, she had no idea that she would end up sailing around the world dressed as a man!

From Voyage autour du monde, entrepris par ordre du Roi : zoologie
Vue de L’Île Tinian: Pirogues des Îles Carolines

Rose and Louis were married not long before he was asked to lead a scientific expedition aboard the ship L’Uranie. When the couple realised they could be parted for several years, they devised a plan to stay together. Rose stole aboard dressed as a midshipman and remained in disguise until they had sailed past Gibraltar and were on their way.

The happy couple visited the Pacific Islands, Australia, South America and the Falkland Islands and Rose kept a journal throughout, written for her friend Caroline de Nanteuil, which was later published in Paris in 1824 as Voyage autour de monde, enterprise par ordre du Roi  by Pillet Aîné.

The publication consisted of three volumes of plates containing exquisitely fine illustrations in full colour. This record of a real journey inspired by true love is now located in the rare books collection at The Leeds Library.

Rose nursed Louis through cholera, and the couple remained devoted to each other until Rose’s early death in 1832.