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Frenchwoman, world's oldest person, dies

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The world’s oldest person, Frenchwoman Eugénie Blanchard, died early Thursday morning aged 114.

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Blanchard, who was born on 16 February 1896, became the oldest person in the world in May when a Japanese woman died a few days before her 115th birthday. She was the oldest person from Saint Barthélemy, Guadeloupe, in the French West Indies, on record.

She was among the 40 oldest people ever verified and one of the oldest three French people ever.

A former nun, she has lived in St Barths since 1956. She spent the last 30 years in a nursing home, but was in good health until the end of her life, despite being almost blind.

Children from the neighbourhood called her "Douchy", which is derived from Dushi, meaning sweets in the local dialect, because she also worked as a sweet seller.

Last month, Philibert Parnasse, the oldest Frenchman, died at his home in Guadeloupe at the age of 109.

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