This child is named Thérèse Thérèse was the last child of the Martin Family. In 1872, when her mother Zélie discovered that she was pregnant, her maternal joy was mixed with great anxieties. It was her ninth pregnancy and, by the age of forty-one, she had already had the sorrow of losing four children at an early age: two boys, both named Joseph, Hélène, who died when she was only five, and a first little Thérèse. Thérèse was born in Alençon on January 2, 1873. Her father Louis Martin was a clockmaker and jeweler; her mother Zélie Guérin— a lacemaker. She had four sisters: Marie, Pauline, Léonie, and Céline, who was four years older than she. After being nursed by Rose Taillé in the countryside in order to strengthen her frail health, Thérèse returned to her family home, where she was cherished tenderly. Her little childish personality unfolded. She was happy, tenderhearted, ardent in her love, impetuous, and extremely determined. Imust share with you an event that will probably take place at the end of the year, but which is of hardly any interest to anyone but me at the moment.... However, I would be happy over it if I knew that I could raise this little poor little person who is coming to live in our home. I’m already thinking about the end of the year because of the child who’s coming as my New Year’s gift. How will I raise [it]? I have nightmares about it every night. Oh well, I have to hope that I’ll come through it better than I think and that I will not have the sorrow of losing [it]. From Zélie’s letters My little one is not at all difficult during the day, but at night she often makes us pay dearly for her good day. Last night I held her until 11:30. I was exhausted, and I couldn’t do it any more. Fortunately, afterwards she didn’t do anything but sleep. This child is named Thérèse, like my last little girl. Everybody tells me that she’ll be beautiful. She already laughs. I saw this for the first time on Tuesday. I thought I was mistaken, but yesterday it was impossible to doubt it any longer. She looked at me very carefully, then gave me a delightful smile. 13 Darling Thérèse Berthe Morisot, The Cradle