Isabelle Eberhardt (1877-1904) was born the daughter of a Russian emigres and raised in a climate of aristocratic anarchism. She reinvented herself as a desert Arab and a devout Muslim. She was a woman who preferred dressing like a boy and whose adventures - as a mystic, a connoiser of drugs, and a rumoured participant in sexual orgies - scandalised Europeans at the turn of the century. During her brief life she was a source of worried speculation to the French authorities in North Africa. After her death she became a legend: 'the amazon of the Sahara'.