The Public Paperfolding History Project

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Last updated 8/2/2024


Billet-Doux / Love-Letters

This page is being used to collect information about the history of Billet-Doux (informal folded notes and love-letters). Please contact me if you know any of this information is incorrect or if you have any other information that should be added. Thank you.

There is a separate page about Triangular Notes which are also sometimes described as billet-doux.



This painting by Francois Boucher (1703 - 1770) dated 1750 shows a lady holding a billet-doux / love letter. The chicken is probably a reference to the term 'poulet de papier', which sugnifies a love letter. The letter appears to be enclosed in an envelope.



This painting from the early 1770s by Jean Honoré Fragonard shows a billet-doux folded into a rectangular shape.



This engraving from 1778, known as 'Le Billet-Doux', by Nicolas De Launey (1739 - 1792) (taken from a 1771 painting by Nicolas Lavreince) shows a lady being secretly handed a love-letter. The letter appears to be enclosed in an envelope.