Settling in Paris, Cravan became France's heavyweight boxing champion without having to fight a single match. His reputation as a professional boxer in itself provided a sort of street-credibility to his Dadaist reputation, but his rough vibrant poetry, and provocative, anarchistic lectures and public appearances (which often degenerated into drunken brawls) also earned him the admiration of Marcel Duchamp, Francis Picabia, André Breton, and other artists and intellectuals.
His personal style involved a continual re-invention of his public persona and various outrageous statements and boasts. His pride to be the nephew of Oscar Wilde even produced hoaxes - documents and poems - Cravan wrote and then signed "Oscar Wilde". In 1913 he published an article in his self-edited paper Maintenant, claiming that his uncle was still alive and had visited him in Paris. This rumour was taken up even by the New York Times. In fact, the two of them never met.
In 1914 he fled to New York to avoid fighting in the war, and then to South America three years later for the same reason. In Mexico City he met his future wife Mina Loy. After their marriage in 1918 they planned a trip from Mexico to Argentina. Without enough money for both of them to book passage on a ship, Loy took the trip on a ship and Cravan set out alone on a sailboat to Argentina. Cravan never arrived.
Intermittent and unconfirmed reports of his sighting continued for many years.
One report has it he changed his name to B. Traven and assumed the identity of a reclusive author of German-American nationality who wrote The Treasure of the Sierra Madre.
Another has it that he returned to New York and then Paris, took the name Dorian Hope, a vagrant poet who sold forged Oscar Wilde manuscripts in the early 1920s.
His only daughter, Fabienne Lloyd, was born in England on April 5, 1919 and later went to the United States together with her mother. Her descendants live in Aspen, Colorado.
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