Aux Belles Poules

Aux Belles Poules

The "Aux Belles Poules", the last word being also slang for prostitute, was a well-known brothel in Paris at Rue Blondel 32-34.

In 1946 all Parisian brothels were closed by the Marthe Richard Law, and the Aux Belle Poules was converted into student housing, with the ground floor operating as a confectionery wholesaler and later being used by a Chinese importer of clothing. In 1996 it became a listed building precisely because of its previous use, a lot of its internal features still being intact.

Mural in the Aux Belles Poules

They had their own 'money, similar to the tokens sometimes used in casinos. They had a diameter of ca. 22 mm and on one side bore the message "AUX BELLE POULES 32 RUE BLONDEL" and on the other an image of a French cockerel with the inscription "PIECE DE PUBLICITÉ". Some other brothels also had their own 'money'

Tokens from Aux Belles Poules

The brothel was also known for its 'tableaux vivants' (living tableaus), in which erotic scenes were portrayed. Wealthy Parisians would enjoy the likes of "the crazed nun," "the wife wakes up," or "the naval officers on leave," with the actresses sporting strap-on phalluses of lurid pink.

Among distinguished visitors were Jules Pascin and Henry Miller, in the company of Anais Nin.

The closing evening is described by the historian Louis Chevalier in his book 'Histoire de la nuit parisienne'.

The place is described by Henri Calet in his 1935 book 'La Belle Lurette' so :

Die Damen gewannen bei einem Spiel vierzig Sous; dabei mußten wir die Münzen auf die Tischkanten legen, während die Damen sie mit dem Schlitz ihres Unterleibes "einsaugten" .

Pierre Deveaux treated the establishment in his 'La Langue verte':

Die zur Auswahl stehenden Damen tanzen leicht gekleidet mit den Herren, bevor sie "hinaufsteigen". Dabei erfinden sie Scherze, die immer wieder alt und jung erfreuen: So stecken sie sich eine brennende Zigarette in ihre Fiedel oder versuchen mit dem gleichen Organ, das sich dann in eine Sparbüchse verwandelt, auf den Tischkanten liegende Münzen einzusaugen.

The building was converted into student housing, while the ground floor operated as a confectionery wholesaler for decades, then a Chinese clothing importer before it closed down in ca. 2009.

There was another 'maison close' at number 16, the "Au Moulin"

Au Moulin, rue Blondel 16, paris

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