Gabrielle-Suzanne de Villeneuve
Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve (1685 - 1755) was a French novelist who wrote the story La Belle et La Bête (Beauty and the Beast), first published in 1740. Based on a tale that dates back thousands of years, Villeneuve's story is the oldest known written version. It was the length of a novel and after her death in 1755, the story was abridged and rewritten by Jeanne-Marie Leprince de Beaumont. Beaumont's version was published in 1756 in her Magasin des Enfants, a widely popular publication. She gave no credit to Villeneuve as the author of La Belle et la Bête and so Beaumont is often referred to as the author of this famous fairytale. Her shortened version is the one best known today.