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Encyclopedia > Voltaire
François-Marie Arouet

Voltaire at 24, by Nicolas de Largillière.
Born November 21, 1694
Paris, France
Died May 30, 1778 (aged 83)
Paris, France
Pen name Voltaire
Occupation Philosophe
Nationality French

François-Marie Arouet (21 November 169430 May 1778), better known by the pen name Voltaire, was a French Enlightenment writer, essayist, Freemason[1], deist and philosopher known for his wit, philosophical sport, and defense of civil liberties, including freedom of religion. He was an outspoken supporter of social reform despite strict censorship laws and harsh penalties for those who broke them. A satirical polemicist, he frequently made use of his works to criticize Catholic Church dogma and the French institutions of his day. From [1], in the public domain This image is in the public domain because its copyright has expired in the United States and those countries with a copyright term of life of the author plus 100 years. ... Nicolas de Largillière (October 20, 1656 - March 20, 1746), French painter, was born at Paris. ... is the 325th day of the year (326th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Events February 6 - The colony Quilombo dos Palmares is destroyed. ... This article is about the capital of France. ... is the 150th day of the year (151st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1778 (MDCCLXXVIII) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Monday of the 11-day slower Julian calendar). ... A pen name or nom de plume is a pseudonym adopted by an author. ... This article is about work. ... The philosophes (French for philosophers) were a group of intellectuals of the 18th century Enlightenment. ... In English usage, nationality is the legal relationship between a person and a country. ... For other persons named John Locke, see John Locke (disambiguation). ... Sir Isaac Newton FRS (4 January 1643 – 31 March 1727) [ OS: 25 December 1642 – 20 March 1727][1] was an English physicist, mathematician, astronomer, natural philosopher, and alchemist. ... Victor-Marie Hugo (pronounced ) (February 26, 1802 — May 22, 1885) was a French poet, playwright, novelist, essayist, visual artist, statesman, human rights campaigner, and perhaps the most influential exponent of the Romantic movement in France. ... For other persons of the same name, see Thomas Paine (disambiguation). ... Donatien Alphonse François de Sade (Marquis de Sade) (June 2, 1740 – December 2, 1814) (pronounced IPA: ) was a French aristocrat, french revolutionary and writer of philosophy-laden and often violent pornography. ... Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche (October 15, 1844 – August 25, 1900) (IPA: ) was a nineteenth-century German philosopher and philologist. ... Alfred Jules Ayer (October 29, 1910 - June 27, 1989), better known as simply A. J. Ayer (and called Freddie by friends), was a British philosopher. ... is the 325th day of the year (326th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Events February 6 - The colony Quilombo dos Palmares is destroyed. ... is the 150th day of the year (151st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1778 (MDCCLXXVIII) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Monday of the 11-day slower Julian calendar). ... A pen name or nom de plume is a pseudonym adopted by an author. ... The word Enlightment redirects here. ... A writer is anyone who creates a written work, although the word more usually designates those who write creatively or professionally, or those who have written in many different forms. ... An essayist is an author who writes compositions which can be about any particular subject. ... American Square & Compasses Freemasonry is a worldwide fraternal organization. ... For other uses, see Ceremonial Deism. ... For other uses, see Philosophy (disambiguation). ... Look up Wit in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Civil liberties are protections from the power of governments. ... The Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen guarantees freedom of religion, as long as religious activities do not infringe on public order in ways detrimental to society. ... Reform movement is a kind of social movement that aims to make a change in certain aspects of the society rather than fundamental changes. ... For other uses, see Censor. ... Look up Polemic in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... The name Catholic Church can mean a visible organization that refers to itself as Catholic, or the invisible Christian Church, viz. ... For other senses of this word, see dogma (disambiguation). ...


Voltaire was one of several Enlightenment figures (along with John Locke and Thomas Hobbes) whose works and ideas influenced important thinkers of both the American and French Revolutions. For other persons named John Locke, see John Locke (disambiguation). ... Hobbes redirects here. ... The French Revolution (1789–1815) was a period of political and social upheaval in the political history of France and Europe as a whole, during which the French governmental structure, previously an absolute monarchy with feudal privileges for the aristocracy and Catholic clergy, underwent radical change to forms based on...

Contents

Biography

Early career

François-Marie Arouet was born in Paris France, the youngest of the five children of François Arouet (1650–January 1, 1722), a notary who was a minor treasury official, and his wife, Marie Marguerite d'Aumart (ca. 1660–July 13, 1701), from a noble family of Poitou province. Voltaire was educated by Jesuits at the Collège Louis-le-Grand (1704-11), where he learned Latin and Greek; later in life he became fluent in Italian, Spanish, and English. From 1711 to 1713 he studied law. Before devoting himself entirely to writing, Voltaire worked as a secretary to the French ambassador in the Netherlands, where he fell in love with a French refugee named Catherine Olympe Dunoyer. Their scandalous elopement was foiled by Voltaire's father and he was forced to return to France. Most of Voltaire's early life revolved around Paris until his exile. From the beginning Voltaire had trouble with the authorities for his energetic attacks on the government and the Catholic Church. These activities were to result in numerous imprisonments and exiles. In his early twenties he spent eleven months in the Bastille for allegedly writing satirical verses about the aristocracy. This article is about the capital of France. ... is the 1st day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... // Events Abraham De Moivre states De Moivres theorem connecting trigonometric functions and complex numbers Publication of the first book of Bachs Well-Tempered Clavier Fall of Persias Safavid dynasty during a bloody revolt of the Afghani people. ... A US Embossed Notary Seal. ... is the 194th day of the year (195th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Events January 18 - Frederick I becomes King of Prussia. ... Coat of arms of Richard, Earl of Cornwall, Plantagenet claimant to the county of Poitou, now favored as the coat of arms of Poitou by people in Poitou Poitou was a province of France whose capital city was Poitiers. ... The Society of Jesus (Latin: Societas Iesu), commonly known as the Jesuits, is a Roman Catholic religious order. ... The Lycée Louis-le-Grand, in Paris is one of the most famous lycées providing preparatory classes for grandes écoles. ... For other uses, see Latins and Latin (disambiguation). ... The English language is a West Germanic language that originates in England. ... For other uses, see Law (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Ambassador (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Love (disambiguation). ... For the architectural structure, see Church (building). ... This article is about the building. ... Aristocrat redirects here. ...


After graduating, Voltaire began his career in literature. His father, however, intended his son to be educated in the law. Voltaire, pretending to work in Paris as an assistant to a lawyer, spent much of his time writing satirical poetry. When his father found him out, he again sent Voltaire to study law, this time in the provinces. Nevertheless, he continued to write, producing essays and historical studies not always noted for their accuracy. Voltaire's wit made him popular among some of the aristocratic families. In 1719, he became involved in the Cellamare conspiracy of Giulio Alberoni against Philippe II, Duke of Orléans, the regent for Louis XV of France. One of his writings about the Régent led to his being imprisoned in the Bastille, as previously mentioned. While there, he wrote his debut play, Œdipe, and adopted the name Voltaire which came from his hometown in southern France. Œdipe's success began Voltaire's influence and brought him into the French Enlightenment. For the fish called lawyer, see Burbot. ... // Events January 23 - The Principality of Liechtenstein is created within the Holy Roman Empire April 25 - Daniel Defoe publishes Robinson Crusoe June 10 - Battle of Glen Shiel Prussia conducts Europes first systematic census Miners in Falun, Sweden find an apparently petrified body of Fet-Mats Israelsson in an unused... Cardinal Alberoni Giulio Alberoni (May 21, 1664 OS - June 26 NS, 1752), Italian cardinal and statesman in the service of Philip V of Spain, was born near Piacenza, probably at the village of Fiorenzuola dArda in the Duchy of Parma. ... Philippe II, Duke of Orléans, Philippe Charles (August 2, 1674 – December 23, 1723) called Duke of Chartres (1674–1701), and then Duke of Orléans (1701–1723) was Regent of France from 1715 to 1723. ... Louis XV (February 15, 1710 – May 10, 1774), ruled as King of France and Navarre from 1715 until his death. ... Philippe II, Duke of Orléans, Philippe Charles (August 2, 1674 – December 23, 1723) called Duke of Chartres (1674–1701), and then Duke of Orléans (1701–1723) was Regent of France from 1715 to 1723. ...


Voltaire was a prolific writer, and produced works in almost every literary form, authoring plays, poetry, novels, essays, historical and scientific works, over 20,000 letters and over two thousand books and pamphlets. For other uses, see Literature (disambiguation). ... Poetry (ancient Greek: poieo = create) is an art form in which human language is used for its aesthetic qualities in addition to, or instead of, its notional and semantic content. ... For other uses, see Novel (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Essay (disambiguation). ... Polish soldiers reading a German leaflet during the Warsaw Uprising A pamphlet is an unbound booklet (that is, without a hard cover or binding). ...


The name "Voltaire"

The name "Voltaire," which he adopted in 1718 not only as a pen name but also in daily use, is an anagram of AROVET LI, the Latinised spelling of his surname, Arouet, and the initial letters of the sobriquet "le jeune" ("the younger"). The name also echoes in reversed order the syllables of a familial château in the Poitou region: "Airvault". The adoption of this name after his incarceration at the Bastille is seen by many to mark a formal separation on the part of Voltaire from his family and his past. For the game, see Anagrams. ... Coat of arms of Richard, Earl of Cornwall, Plantagenet claimant to the county of Poitou, now favored as the coat of arms of Poitou by people in Poitou Poitou was a province of France whose capital city was Poitiers. ... Airvault is a small town situated in the departement of the Deux-Sèvres (France), on the Thouet river. ...


Richard Holmes [2] supports the origin of the name, but adds that a writer such as Voltaire would have intended the name to carry its connotations of speed and daring. These come from associated words such as: "voltige" (acrobatics on a trapeze or horse), "volte-face" (spinning about to face your enemies), and "volatile" (originally any winged creature). Arouet was not a noble name to suit his growing reputation, especially due to the fact of its similarities with "rouer" (for beating) and "roué" (a debauchee). Richard Holmes is a British author of may books in the late 1900s. ...


Poetry

From an early age, Voltaire displayed a talent for writing verse, and his first published work was poetry. He wrote two long poems, the Henriade, and La Pucelle d'Orléans, besides many other smaller pieces. Pucelle is a reference to a young womans virginity in French. ...


The Henriade was written in imitation of Virgil, using the Alexandrine couplet reformed and rendered monotonous for dramatic purposes. Voltaire lacked enthusiasm for and understanding of the subject, both of which negatively affected the poem's quality. The Pucelle, on the other hand, is a burlesque work attacking religion and history. Voltaire's minor poems are generally considered superior to either of these two works. For other uses, see Virgil (disambiguation). ... An alexandrine is a line of poetic meter. ... For other uses, see Burlesque (disambiguation). ...


Prose

Many of Voltaire's prose works and romances, usually composed as pamphlets, were written as polemics. Candide attacks religious and philosophical optimism; L'Homme aux quarante ecus, certain social and political ways of the time; Zadig and others, the received forms of moral and metaphysical orthodoxy; and some were written to deride the Bible. In these works, Voltaire's ironic style, free of exaggeration, is apparent, particularly the restraint and simplicity of the verbal treatment. Candide in particular is the best example of his style. Prose is writing distinguished from poetry by its greater variety of rhythm and its closer resemblance to everyday speech. ... Polemic is the art or practice of disputation or controversy, as in religious, philosophical, or political matters. ... For the Bernstein operetta based on the book, see Candide (operetta). ... “Positive Attitude” redirects here. ... For other uses, see Bible (disambiguation). ...

Bust of Voltaire by Houdon.
Bust of Voltaire by Houdon.

Voltaire also has, in common with Jonathan Swift, the distinction of paving the way for science fiction's philosophical irony, particularly in his Micromégas. Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (1569x1973, 656 KB) Photographed by Elizabeth Roy, 11/6/06 The artist, Houdon, died in 1828. ... Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (1569x1973, 656 KB) Photographed by Elizabeth Roy, 11/6/06 The artist, Houdon, died in 1828. ... Bust of Jefferson by Houdon Jean-Antoine Houdon (March 20, 1741 – July 15, 1828) was a French neoclassical sculptor. ... Jonathan Swift Jonathan Swift (November 30, 1667 – October 19, 1745) was an Irish cleric, satirist, essayist, political pamphleteer (first for Whigs then for Tories), and poet, famous for works like Gullivers Travels, A Modest Proposal, A Journal to Stella, The Drapiers Letters, The Battle of the Books, and... Science fiction is a form of speculative fiction principally dealing with the impact of imagined science and technology, or both, upon society and persons as individuals. ... Micromégas is a short story written in the Eighteenth Century by the French philosopher and satirist Voltaire. ...


In general criticism and miscellaneous writing, Voltaire's writing was comparable to his other works. Almost all of his more substantive works, whether in verse or prose, are preceded by prefaces of one sort or another, which are models of his caustic yet conversational tone. In a vast variety of nondescript pamphlets and writings, he displays his skills at journalism. In pure literary criticism his principal work is the Commentaire sur Corneille, although he wrote many more similar works — sometimes (as in his Life and notices of Molière) independently and sometimes as part of his Siécles.


Voltaire's works, especially his private letters, frequently contain the word "l'infâme" and the expression "écrasez l'infâme, or "crush the infamy". The phrase refers to abuses of the people by royalty and the clergy that Voltaire saw around him, and the superstition and intolerance that the clergy bred within the people [3]. He had felt these effects in his own exiles, in the confiscations of his books, and the hideous sufferings of Calas and La Barre. Jean Calas (1698 - 1762) was a merchant living in Toulouse, France, famous for having been the victim of a biased trial due to his being a Protestant. ... Jean-François, knight de la Barre (1745 - July 1st, 1766) was a French nobleman, famous for having been tortured and burnt at the stake for not having removed his hat before a Catholic procession. ...


The most oft-cited Voltaire quotation is apocryphal. He is incorrectly credited with the quote "I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it." These were not his words but instead were written by Evelyn Beatrice Hall (under the pseudonym S. G. Tallentyre), in her 1906 biographical book The Friends of Voltaire. Hall intended to summarize in her own words Voltaire's attitude towards Claude Adrien Helvétius and his controversial book De l'esprit, but her first-person expression was mistaken for an actual quotation from Voltaire. Her interpretation does capture the spirit of Voltaire' attitude towards Helvetius ; it had been said that this was inspired by a quote found in a 1770 letter to M. le Roche, in which he says "I detest what you write, but I would give my life to make it possible for you to continue to write." [4], nevertheless, French scholars feel there must have been some misinterpretation, as the letter doesn't seem to contain any such quote [5]. Voltaire's largest philosophical work is the Dictionnaire philosophique, comprising articles contributed by him to the Encyclopédie and several minor pieces. It directed criticism at French political institutions, Voltaire's personal enemies, the Bible, and the Roman Catholic Church. Evelyn Beatrice Hall, who wrote under the pseudonym S.G. Tallentyre, was a writer and the personal biographer of Voltaire. ... Claude Adrien Helvétius (February 26, 1715 - December 26, 1771) was a French philosopher and litterateur. ... The Dictionnaire philosophique (Philosophical Dictionary) was a very controversial 1764 book written by Voltaire. ... This article is about the 18th-century French encyclopaedia. ... For other uses, see Bible (disambiguation). ... Catholic Church redirects here. ...


Amongst other targets, Voltaire was a critic of France's colonial policy in North America, dismissing the vast territory of New France as "a few acres of snow" ("quelques arpents de neige"). Capital Quebec Language(s) French Religion Roman Catholicism Government Monarchy King See List of French monarchs Governor See list of Governors Legislature Sovereign Council of New France Historical era Ancien Régime in France  - Royal Control 1655  - Articles of Capitulation of Quebec 1759  - Articles of Capitulation of Montreal 1760  - Treaty... A few acres of snow (in the original French, Quelques arpents de neige) is a quotation from Voltaire popularly understood to be a sneering evaluation of New Frances — and, by extension, Canadas — lack of mercantile value and strategic importance to France. ...


Letters

Voltaire also engaged in an enormous amount of private correspondence during his life, totaling over 21,000 letters. His personality shows through in the letters that he wrote: his energy and versatility, his unhesitating flattery, his ruthless sarcasm, his unscrupulous business faculty, and his resolve to double and twist in any fashion so as to escape his enemies.


Exile to England

Voltaire's repartee continued to get him into trouble. After he offended a young nobleman, the Chevalier de Rohan, the Rohan family had a lettre de cachet issued, a secret warrant that allowed for the punishment of people who had committed no crimes or who possibly posed a risk to the royal family, and used it to exile Voltaire without a trial. The incident marked the beginning of Voltaire's attempt to improve the French judiciary system. In French history, lettres de cachet were letters signed by the king of France, countersigned by one of his ministers, and closed with the royal seal, or cachet. ... Exile (band) may refer to: Exile - The American country music band Exile - The Japanese pop music band Category: ...


Voltaire's exile to England greatly influenced him through ideas and experiences. The young man was impressed by Britain's constitutional monarchy, as well as the country's support of the freedoms of speech and religion. He was influenced by several of the neoclassical writers of the age, and developed an interest in earlier English literature, especially in the works of Shakespeare, still little known in continental Europe at the time. Despite pointing out his deviations from neoclassical standards, Voltaire saw Shakespeare as an example French writers might look up to, since drama in France, despite being more polished, lacked on-stage action. Later, however, as Shakespeare's influence was being increasingly felt in France, Voltaire would endeavour to set a contrary example with his own plays, decrying what he considered Shakespeare's barbarities. For the documentary series, see Monarchy (TV series). ... Wikipedia does not yet have an article with this exact name. ...


After three years in exile, Voltaire returned to Paris and published his views on British attitudes towards government, literature and religion in a collection of essays in letter form entitled the Lettres philosophiques sur les Anglais (Philosophical letters on the English). Because he regarded the British constitutional monarchy as more developed and more respectful of human rights (particularly religious tolerance) than its French counterpart, these letters met great controversy in France, to the point where copies of the document were burnt and Voltaire was again forced to leave France. Voltaire studied in England between 1726 and 1728. ...


The Château de Cirey

Voltaire aged 70, an engraving from an 1843 edition of his Philosophical Dictionary
Voltaire aged 70, an engraving from an 1843 edition of his Philosophical Dictionary

Voltaire's next destination was the Château de Cirey, located on the borders of Champagne, France and Lorraine. The building was renovated with his money, and here he began a relationship with the Marquise du Châtelet, Gabrielle Émilie le Tonnelier de Breteuil. Cirey was owned by the Marquise's husband, Marquis Florent-Claude du Chatelet, who sometimes visited his wife and her lover at the chateau. The relationship, which lasted for fifteen years, had a significant intellectual element. Voltaire and the Marquise collected over 21,000 books, an enormous number for the time. Together, they studied these books and performed experiments in the "natural sciences" (what we now call physics), in his laboratory. Voltaire's experiments included an attempt to determine the properties of fire. Image File history File linksMetadata Download high-resolution version (1526x3321, 944 KB) Summary Engraving published as the frontispiece to Voltaires A Philosophical Dictionary. London: W. Dugdale (16 Holywell Street, Strand), 1843. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high-resolution version (1526x3321, 944 KB) Summary Engraving published as the frontispiece to Voltaires A Philosophical Dictionary. London: W. Dugdale (16 Holywell Street, Strand), 1843. ... The Dictionnaire philosophique (Philosophical Dictionary) was a very controversial 1764 book written by Voltaire. ... For the wine region, see Champagne (wine region). ... Location Administration Capital Metz Regional President Jean-Pierre Masseret (PS) (since 2004) Départements Meurthe-et-Moselle Meuse Moselle Vosges Arrondissements 19 Cantons 157 Communes 2,337 Statistics Land area1 23,547 km² Population (Ranked 11th)  - January 1, 2005 est. ... Émilie du Châtelet Gabrielle Émilie Le Tonnelier de Breteuil, marquise du Châtelet (December 17, 1706 – September 10, 1749) was a French mathematician, physicist, and author. ... The term natural science as the way in which different fields of study are defined is determined as much by historical convention as by the present day meaning of the words. ... A magnet levitating above a high-temperature superconductor demonstrates the Meissner effect. ...


Having learned from his previous brushes with the authorities, Voltaire began his future habit of keeping out of personal harm's way, and denying any awkward responsibility. He continued to write, publishing plays such as Mérope and some short stories. Again, a main source of inspiration for Voltaire were the years of his British exile, during which he had been strongly influenced by the works of Sir Isaac Newton. Voltaire strongly believed in Newton's theories, especially concerning optics (Newton’s discovery that white light is composed of all the colors in the spectrum led to many experiments at Cirey), and gravity (the story of Newton and the apple falling from the tree is mentioned in Voltaire's Essai sur la poésie épique, or Essay on Epic Poetry). Although both Voltaire and the Marquise were curious about the philosophies of Gottfried Leibniz, a contemporary and rival of Newton, they remained "Newtonians" and based their theories on Newton’s works and ideas. Though it has been stated that the Marquise may have been more "Leibnizian", she did write "je newtonise," which, translated, means "I am 'newtoning'". Voltaire's book, Eléments de la philosophie de Newton (The Elements of Newton's Philosophies), was probably co-written with the Marquise, and describes the other branches of Newton's ideas that fascinated him, including optics and the theory of attraction (gravity). Sir Isaac Newton FRS (4 January 1643 – 31 March 1727) [ OS: 25 December 1642 – 20 March 1727][1] was an English physicist, mathematician, astronomer, natural philosopher, and alchemist. ... For the book by Sir Isaac Newton, see Opticks. ... This article deals with the general meaning of spectrum and the history of its use. ... Leibniz redirects here. ...


Voltaire and the Marquise also studied history - particularly the people who had contributed to civilization up to that point. Voltaire's second essay in English had been Essay upon the Civil Wars in France. When he returned to France, he wrote a biographical essay of King Charles XII, which marks the beginning of Voltaire's rejection of religion; he wrote that human life is not destined or controlled by greater beings. The essay won him the position of historian in the king's court. Voltaire and the Marquise also worked with philosophy, particularly with metaphysics, the branch of philosophy dealing with the distant, and what cannot be directly proven: why and what life is, whether or not there is a God, and so on. Voltaire and the Marquise analyzed the Bible, trying to find its validity in the world. Voltaire renounced religion; he believed in the separation of church and state and in religious freedom, ideas he formed after his stay in England. Voltaire even claimed that "One hundred years from my day there will not be a Bible in the earth except one that is looked upon by an antiquarian curiosity seeker." Charles XII redirects here. ... Plato (left) and Aristotle (right), by Raphael (Stanza della Segnatura, Rome) Metaphysics is the branch of philosophy investigating principles of reality transcending those of any particular science. ... This article is about the term God in the context of monotheism and henotheism. ... For other uses, see Bible (disambiguation). ... Constantines Conversion, depicting the conversion of Emperor Constantine the Great to Christianity, by Peter Paul Rubens. ...


Later life

After the death of the Marquise, Voltaire moved to Berlin to join Frederick the Great, a close friend and admirer of his. The king had repeatedly invited him to his palace, and now gave him a salary of 20,000 francs a year. Though life went well at first, he began to encounter difficulties. Faced with a lawsuit and an argument with the president of the Berlin Academy of science, Voltaire wrote the Diatribe du docteur Akakia (Diatribe of Doctor Akakia) which derided the president. This greatly angered Frederick, who had all copies of the document burned and arrested Voltaire at an inn where he was staying along his journey home. Voltaire headed toward Paris, but Louis XV banned him from the city, so instead he turned to Geneva, where he bought a large estate. Though he was received openly at first, the law in Geneva which banned theatrical performances and the publication of La pucelle d'Orléans against his will led to Voltaire's writing of Candide, ou l'Optimisme (Candide, or Optimism) in 1759 and his eventual departure. Candide, a satire on the philosophy of Leibniz, remains the work for which Voltaire is perhaps best known. This article is about the capital of Germany. ... Frederick II (German: ; January 24, 1712 – August 17, 1786) was a King of Prussia (1740–1786) from the Hohenzollern dynasty. ... Doctor Akakia is a satire of a very biting nature by Voltaire, directed against pretentious pedants of science in the person of Maupertuis, the President of the Royal Academy of Sciences at Berlin, which so excited the anger of Frederick the Great, the patron of the Academy, that he ordered... For other uses, see Geneva (disambiguation). ... For the Bernstein operetta based on the book, see Candide (operetta). ...


It is said that he said at his deathbed, "I am abandoned by God and man." [6] Voltaire died on May 30, 1778 and his last words are said to have been, "For God's sake, let me die in peace." [7]


Religion

Voltaire, though often thought an atheist, did in fact partake in religious activities and even erected a chapel on his estate at Ferney. The chief source for the misconception is a line from one of his poems (called "Epistle to the author of the book, The Three Impostors") that translates to: "If God did not exist, it would be necessary to invent Him." The full body of the work, however, reveals his criticism was more focused towards the actions of organized religion, rather than with the concept of religion itself. For information about the band, see Atheist (band). ... A chapel is a private church, usually small and often attached to a larger institution such as a college, a hospital, a palace, or a prison. ... Ferney-Voltaire is a town and commune in the Ain département of eastern France, located between the Jura mountains and the Swiss border. ...


Like many other key figures during the European Enlightenment, Voltaire considered himself a Deist. He did not believe that absolute faith, based upon any particular or singular religious text or tradition of revelation, was needed to believe in God. In fact, Voltaire's focus instead on the idea of a universe based on reason and a respect for nature reflected the contemporary Pantheism, increasingly popular throughout the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries and which continues in a form of deism today known as "Voltairean Pantheism." The Age of Enlightenment refers to either the eighteenth century in European philosophy, or the longer period including the seventeenth century and the Age of Reason. ... Deism is belief in a God or first cause based on reason, rather than on faith or revelation, and thus a form of theism in opposition to fideism. ... Pantheism (Greek: πάν ( pan ) = all and θεός ( theos ) = God) literally means God is All and All is God. It is the view that everything is of an all-encompassing immanent abstract God; or that the universe, or nature, and God are equivalent. ...


He wrote, "What is faith? Is it to believe that which is evident? No. It is perfectly evident to my mind that there exists a necessary, eternal, supreme, and intelligent being. This is no matter of faith, but of reason." [8] [9]


In terms of religious texts, Voltaire was largely of the opinion that the Bible was 1) an outdated legal and/or moral reference, 2) by and large a metaphor, but one that still taught some good lessons, and 3) a work of Man, not a divine gift. These beliefs did not hinder his religious practice, however, though it did gain him somewhat of a bad reputation in the Catholic Church. It may be noted that Voltaire was indeed seen as somewhat of a nuisance to many believers, and was almost universally known; Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart wrote to his father the year of Voltaire's death, saying, "The arch-scoundrel Voltaire has finally kicked the bucket...." [10] The name Catholic Church can mean a visible organization that refers to itself as Catholic, or the invisible Christian Church, viz. ... “Mozart” redirects here. ...


Voltaire was also critical of Muhammad. His play Fanaticism, or Mahomet was “written in opposition to the founder of a false and barbarous sect”; he also referred to Muhammad as “a false prophet.”[11] However, his views on Islam were more favourable. He called him the founder of "a wise, severe, chaste, and humane religion", and also said "The legislator of the Muslims, a terrible and powerful man, established his dogmas with his valor and arms; yet, his religion became benign and tolerant." [1] Muhammad in a new genre of Islamic calligraphy started in the 17th century by Hafiz Osman. ... Mahomet (Mahomet, ou le fanatisme) aka Fanaticism, or Mahomet the Prophet, is a play written by Voltaire. ... Muhammad in a new genre of Islamic calligraphy started in the 17th century by Hafiz Osman. ...


From translated works on Confucianism and Legalism, Voltaire drew on Chinese concepts of politics and philosophy - which were based on rational principles, to look critically at European organized religion and hereditary aristocracy.


Voltaire also displayed, as part of his Dictionnaire philosophique, an inclination towards the ideas of Hinduism and the works of Brahmin priests, asking, "Is it not probable that the Brahmins were the first legislators of the earth, the first philosophers, the first theologians?" His attitudes towards religious institutions are further shown in the criticisms he made of Christian missionaries in India. The Dictionnaire philosophique (Philosophical Dictionary) was a very controversial 1764 book written by Voltaire. ... Hinduism is a religious tradition[1] that originated in the Indian subcontinent. ... The Sanskrit word denotes the scholar/teacher, priest, caste, class (), or tribe, that has been traditionally enjoined to live a life of learning, teaching and non-possessivenes . ...


There is an apocryphal story that his home at Ferney was purchased by the Geneva Bible Society and used for printing Bibles, but this appears to be due to a misunderstanding of the 1849 annual report of the American Bible Society [2]PDF (2.18 MiB). Voltaire's chateau is now owned and administered by the French Ministry of Culture. The American Bible Society (ABS) is a group, founded in 1816, that publishes, distributes, and translates the Bible. ... “PDF” redirects here. ... MiB redirects here. ... The Minister of Culture and Communications is, in the Government of France, the cabinet member in charge of national museums and monuments; promoting and protecting the arts (visual, plastic, theatrical, musical, dance, architectural, literary, televisual and cinematographic) in France and abroad; and managing the national archives and regional maisons de...


Freemasonry

Voltaire was initiated into Freemasonry shortly before his death. On April 7, 1778 Voltaire accompanied Benjamin Franklin into Loge des Neuf Soeurs in Paris, France and became an Entered Apprentice Freemason. [12][13] Freemasons redirects here. ... Year 1778 (MDCCLXXVIII) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Monday of the 11-day slower Julian calendar). ... This article is about the American political figure. ... This article is about the capital of France. ...


Legacy

Voltaire perceived the French bourgeoisie to be too small and ineffective, the aristocracy to be parasitic and corrupt, the commoners as ignorant and superstitious, and the church as a static force useful only as a counterbalance since its "religious tax" or the tithe helped to create a strong backing for revolutionaries. Bourgeois redirects here. ... Aristocrat redirects here. ... For the architectural structure, see Church (building). ... A tithe (from Old English teogoþa tenth) is a one-tenth part of something, paid as a (usually) voluntary contribution or as a tax or levy, usually to support a Jewish or Christian religious organization. ...

Voltaire at Frederick the Great's Sanssouci. Engraving by Baquoy.
Voltaire at Frederick the Great's Sanssouci. Engraving by Baquoy.

Voltaire distrusted democracy, which he saw as propagating the idiocy of the masses [3]. To Voltaire, only an enlightened monarch or an enlightened absolutist, advised by philosophers like himself, could bring about change as it was in the king's rational interest to improve the power and wealth of his subjects and kingdom. Voltaire essentially believed enlightened despotism to be the key to progress and change. Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Frederick the Great Frederick II of Prussia (Friedrich der Große, Frederick the Great, January 24, 1712 – August 17, 1786) was the Hohenzollern king of Prussia 1740–86. ... This article is about the German palace. ... Voltaire at the residence of Frederick II in Potsdam, Prussia. ... Louis XIV, king of France and Navarre (Painting by Hyacinthe Rigaud, 1701). ... Enlightened absolutism (also known as benevolent or enlightened despotism) is a form of despotism in which rulers were influenced by the Enlightenment. ... A philosopher is a person who thinks deeply regarding people, society, the world, and/or the universe. ... Enlightened absolutism (also known as enlightened despotism) is the absolutist rule of an enlightened monarch . ...


He also believed that Africans were a separate species, inferior to the Europeans, and that ancient Jews were "an ignorant and barbarous people."[14][15]


The most enduring of Voltaire's written works is his novella, Candide, ou l'Optimisme (Candide, or Optimism, 1759), which satirized the philosophy of optimism. Candide was also subject to censorship and Voltaire jokingly claimed that the actual author was a certain "Dr DeMad" in a letter, where he reaffirmed the main polemical stances of the text. [4] For the Bernstein operetta based on the book, see Candide (operetta). ...


Voltaire is also known for many memorable aphorisms, such as: "Si Dieu n'existait pas, il faudrait l'inventer" ("If God did not exist, it would be necessary to invent him"), contained in a verse epistle from 1768, addressed to the anonymous author of a controversial work, The Three Impostors.

Voltaire's château at Ferney, France.
Voltaire's château at Ferney, France.

Voltaire is remembered and honored in France as a courageous polemicist who indefatigably fought for civil rights — the right to a fair trial and freedom of religion — and who denounced the hypocrisies and injustices of the ancien régime. The ancien régime involved an unfair balance of power and taxes between the First Estate (the clergy), the Second Estate (the nobles), and the Third Estate (the commoners and middle class, who were burdened with most of the taxes). Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 800 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (2816 × 2112 pixel, file size: 1. ... Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 800 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (2816 × 2112 pixel, file size: 1. ... Château de Chenonceau in the Loire valley, France A rural château in France. ... Ferney-Voltaire is a town and commune in the Ain département of eastern France, located between the Jura mountains and the Swiss border. ... Civil rights or positive rights are those legal rights retained by citizens and protected by the government. ... The Right to a fair trial is an essential right in all countries respecting the rule of law. ... The Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen guarantees freedom of religion, as long as religious activities do not infringe on public order in ways detrimental to society. ... Ancien Régime, a French term meaning Former Regime, but rendered in English as Old Rule, Old Order, or simply Old Regime, refers primarily to the aristocratic social and political system established in France under the Valois and Bourbon dynasties. ...

Voltaire's tomb in Paris' Pantheon.
Voltaire's tomb in Paris' Pantheon.

Thomas Carlyle argued that, while Voltaire was unsurpassed in literary form, not even the most elaborate of his works were of much value for matter and that he never uttered an original idea of his own. Image File history File linksMetadata Size of this preview: 450 × 600 pixel Image in higher resolution (1200 × 1600 pixel, file size: 874 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) Tomb of Voltaire at the Pantheon, Paris, France. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Size of this preview: 450 × 600 pixel Image in higher resolution (1200 × 1600 pixel, file size: 874 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) Tomb of Voltaire at the Pantheon, Paris, France. ... This article is about the capital of France. ... The Panthéon Interior Dome of the Panthéon Entrance of the Panthéon Voltaires statue and tomb in the crypt of the Panthéon The Panthéon (Latin Pantheon[1], from Greek Pantheon, meaning All the Gods) is a building in the Latin Quarter in Paris, France. ... Thomas Carlyle (4 December 1795 – 5 February 1881) was a Scottish essayist, satirist, and historian, whose work was hugely influential during the Victorian era. ...


According to a review in the March 7, 2005 issue of The New Yorker of Voltaire's Garden, a mathematician friend of his realized in 1728 that the French government had authorized a lottery in which the prize was much greater than the collective cost of the tickets. He and Voltaire formed a syndicate, collected all the money, and became moneylenders to the great houses of Europe. is the 66th day of the year (67th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... This article is about the association term. ...


The town of Ferney, France, where Voltaire lived out the last 20 years of his life (though he died in Paris), is now named Ferney-Voltaire in honor of its most famous resident. His château is a museum. Ferney-Voltaire is a town and commune in the Ain département of eastern France, located between the Jura mountains and the Swiss border. ... Ferney-Voltaire is a town and commune in the Ain département of eastern France, located between the Jura mountains and the Swiss border. ... Château de Chenonceau in the Loire valley, France A rural château in France. ... For other uses, see Museum (disambiguation). ...


Voltaire's library is preserved intact in the Russian National Library at St. Petersburg, Russia. Visit of Alexander I to the library in 1812. ... Saint Petersburg (Russian: Санкт-Петербу́рг, English transliteration: Sankt-Peterburg), colloquially known as Питер (transliterated Piter), formerly known as Leningrad (Ленингра́д, 1924–1991) and Petrograd (Петрогра́д, 1914–1924), is a city located in Northwestern Russia on the delta of the river Neva at the east end of the Gulf of Finland...


In 1791 Voltaire's remains were interred at Paris' Panthéon. The Panthéon Interior Dome of the Panthéon Entrance of the Panthéon Voltaires statue and tomb in the crypt of the Panthéon The Panthéon (Latin Pantheon[1], from Greek Pantheon, meaning All the Gods) is a building in the Latin Quarter in Paris, France. ...


According to poet Richard Armour, Voltaire's friendship with Frederick William existed because "Frederick considered Voltaire to be immensely clever and so did Voltaire." Richard Armour (1906–1989) was an American poet. ... Frederick William II (German: ; September 25, 1744–November 16, 1797) was the fourth King of Prussia, reigning from 1786 until his death. ...


Bibliography

Major works

  • Œdipe (1718)
  • Zaïre (1732)
  • Lettres philosophiques sur les Anglais (1733), revised as Letters on the English (circa 1778)
  • Le Mondain (1736)
  • Sept Discours en Vers sur l'Homme (1738)
  • Zadig (1747)
  • Micromégas (1752)
  • L'Orphelin de la Chine (1755) (Note: This is a translation of a famous Chinese play Orphan of Zhao about the revenge of the orphan of the clan of Zhao on his enemies who killed almost every member of his clan. This play was based on an actual historical event in the Spring-Autumn period of Chinese history.)
  • Candide (1759)
  • Dictionnaire philosophique (1764)
  • L'Ingénu (1767)
  • La Princesse de Babylone (1768)
  • Épître à l'Auteur du Livre des Trois Imposteurs (1770)

Voltaire studied in England between 1726 and 1728. ... Zadig is a famous novel by Voltaire, of a philosophical cast, bearing upon life as in the hands of a destiny beyond our control. ... Micromégas is a short story written in the Eighteenth Century by the French philosopher and satirist Voltaire. ... The Orphan of Zhao, or Orphan of the House Tcho (趙氏孤兒) is a Chinese play of the Yuan Dynasty, attributed to someone named Ji Junxiang (紀君祥), about whom almost nothing is known. ... For the Bernstein operetta based on the book, see Candide (operetta). ... The Dictionnaire philosophique (Philosophical Dictionary) was a very controversial 1764 book written by Voltaire. ... LIngénu is a satirical novel by the French writer Voltaire published in 1767. ... Épître à lAuteur du Livre des Trois Imposteurs is en epistle in verse form written by Voltaire. ...

Plays

Voltaire wrote between fifty and sixty plays, including a few unfinished ones. Among them are these:

  • Œdipe (1718)
  • Eriphile (1732)
  • Irène
  • Socrates
  • Mahomet
  • Mérope
  • Nanine
  • Zaïre (1732)

Mahomet (Mahomet, ou le fanatisme) aka Fanaticism, or Mahomet the Prophet, is a play written by Voltaire. ... Nanine is a play by the French playwright/philosopher/poet Voltaire. ...

Historical

  • History of Charles XII, King of Sweden (1731)
  • The Age of Louis XIV (1752)
  • The Age of Louis XV (1746 - 1752)
  • Annals of the Empire - Charlemagne, A.D. 742 - Henry VII 1313, Vol. I (1754)
  • Annals of the Empire - Louis of Bavaria, 1315 to Ferdinand II 1631 Vol. II (1754)
  • History of the Russian Empire Under Peter the Great (Vol. I 1759; Vol. II 1763)

Charles XII is: Charles XII, or Karl XII, (1682 - 1718), King of Sweden - see Charles XII of Sweden a 19th_century racehorse _ see Charles XII (horse) a pub in the Yorkshire village of Heslington, named after the racehorse - see Heslington This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists...

See also

Classical liberalism (also known as traditional liberalism[1] and laissez-faire liberalism[2]) is a doctrine stressing the importance of human rationality, individual property rights, natural rights, the protection of civil liberties, constitutional limitations of government, free markets, and individual freedom from restraint as exemplified in the writings of Adam... Contributions to liberal theory is a partial list of individual contributions on a worldwide scale. ... This box:      This is a list of notable Freemasons. ... // This is a list of prominent individuals who have been romantically or maritally coupled with a cousin, niece, nephew, aunt or uncle. ... Social fiction (also called political fiction) is sub-genre of science fiction focused on possible development of societies (most often set in near future or a fictional country), very often dominated by totalitarian governments. ...

Notes

  1. ^ "Benjamin Franklin...urged Voltaire to become a freemason; and Voltaire agreed, perhaps only to please Franklin. He was initiated into a Parisian masonic lodge...at the age of 83, less than two months before his death....Ridley, Jasper.The Freemasons: A History of the World's Most Powerful Secret Society (2002) pg. 112
  2. ^ Voltaire's Grin
  3. ^ Palmer, R.R.; Colton, Joel (1950). A History of the Modern World. McGraw-Hill, Inc.. ISBN 0-07-040826-2. 
  4. ^ Boller, Jr., Paul F.; George, John (1989). They Never Said It: A Book of Fake Quotes, Misquotes, and Misleading Attributions. New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-505541-1. 
  5. ^ Note to the Tolerance article in the French Wikipedia http://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tol%C3%A9rance#_note-0
  6. ^ The Eclectic Magazine, (1868) pg. 770
  7. ^ Norman Davies, Europe: A history p. 687
  8. ^ http://deism.com/voltaire.htm
  9. ^ Voltaire. W. Dugdale, A Philosophical Dictionary ver 2, 1843, Page 473 sec 1. Accessed October 31, 2007
  10. ^ Keffe, Simon P. (2003). The Cambridge Companion to Mozart. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0521001927. 
  11. ^ Voltaire Letter to Benedict XIV written in Paris on August 17, 1745 AD Your holiness will pardon the liberty taken by one of the lowest of the faithful, though a zealous admirer of virtue, of submitting to the head of the true religion this performance, written in opposition to the founder of a false and barbarous sect. To whom could I with more propriety inscribe a satire on the cruelty and errors of a false prophet, than to the vicar and representative of a God of truth and mercy? Your holiness will therefore give me leave to lay at your feet both the piece and the author of it, and humbly to request your protection of the one, and your benediction upon the other; in hopes of which, with the profoundest reverence, I kiss your sacred feet.
  12. ^ I did not know that: Mason Facts.
  13. ^ Voltaire on British Columbia Grand Lodge Site.
  14. ^ Voltaire, François-Marie. Essai sur les Moeurs. 
  15. ^ Voltaire, François-Marie. Dictionnaire Philosophique. 

is the 304th day of the year (305th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. ...

References

  • This article incorporates text from the Encyclopædia Britannica Eleventh Edition, a publication now in the public domain.
  • Spielvogel, J. J., 2003. Western Civilization -- Volume II: Since 1500, 5th. ed.
  • "Voltaire, Author and Philosopher." Lucidcafé. 8 October 2005, 25 November 2005 [5].
  • "Voltaire", in Richard Shenkman, Legends, Lies, and Cherished Myths of World History (HarperCollins, 1993), pp. 148-51.
  • Vernon, Thomas S., "Voltaire."
  • Holmes, Richard. "Voltaire's Grin" in New York Review of Books, 30/11/1995, pp. 49 - 55, and in Sidetracks: explorations of a romantic biographer, HarperCollins, 2000 , pp. 345 - 366.
  • Lewis, Bernard (1999). Semites and Anti-Semites: An Inquiry into Conflict and Prejudice. W. W. Norton & Co. ISBN 0-393-31839-7
  • McNeil, Russell. "Voltaire (1694)." Malaspina Great Books. 25 November 2005 [6].
  • Muller, Jerry Z., 2002. The Mind and the Market: Capitalism in Western Thought. Anchor Books.
  • Wade, Ira O., 1967. Studies on Voltaire. New York: Russell & Russell.

Encyclopædia Britannica, the eleventh edition The Encyclopædia Britannica Eleventh Edition (1910–1911) is perhaps the most famous edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica. ... The public domain comprises the body of all creative works and other knowledge—writing, artwork, music, science, inventions, and others—in which no person or organization has any proprietary interest. ... // Summary Jackson J. Spielvogel is an associate professor emeritus at Pennsylvania State University. ... is the 281st day of the year (282nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 329th day of the year (330th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... For the founder of the River Island retail chain, see Bernard Lewis (entrepreneur). ... is the 329th day of the year (330th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ...

External links

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Voltaire
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Preceded by
Jean Bouhier
Seat 33
Académie française

1746–1778
Succeeded by
Jean-François Ducis
Persondata
NAME Voltaire
ALTERNATIVE NAMES Arouet, François-Marie (birth name); The Dictator of Letters
SHORT DESCRIPTION Enlightenment philosopher.
DATE OF BIRTH 21 November 1694
PLACE OF BIRTH Paris, France
DATE OF DEATH 30 May 1778
PLACE OF DEATH Paris, France


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János Batsányi by Friedrich Heinrich Füger, 1808 (Hungarian National Museum, Budapes) Batsányi János (May 11, 1763 - May 12, 1845) was a Hungarian poet, born in Tapolca. ... Mihály Fazekas (1766-1828) is a famous Hungarian writer from Debrecen. ... Hugo Grotius (Huig de Groot, or Hugo de Groot; Delft, 10 April 1583 – Rostock, 28 August 1645) worked as a jurist in the Dutch Republic and laid the foundations for international law, based on natural law. ... Baruch or Benedict de Spinoza (‎, Portuguese: , Latin: ) (November 24, 1632 – February 21, 1677) was a Dutch philosopher of Portuguese Jewish origin. ... Franciscus van den Enden (Antwerp ca. ... Eastern Europe is a concept that lacks one precise definition. ... Sulkhan-Saba Orbeliani (Georgian: ) (November 4, 1658 in Tandzia, Georgia; † January 26, 1725 in Moskow) was a famous Georgian prince, writer, monk and religious zealot. ... 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Jan Åšniadecki Jan Åšniadecki (August 28, 1756 in Å»nin - November 9, 1830 in Jaszuny near Wilno), greatest Polish mathematician, philosopher and astronomer at the turn of the 18th century. ... Categories: 1758 births | 1841 deaths | Polish writers | Polish nobility | People stubs ... JÄ™drzej Åšniadecki JÄ™drzej Åšniadecki (1768 - 1838) was a Polish writer, physician, chemist and biologist. ... Catherine the Great redirects here. ... For other uses, see Lomonosov (disambiguation). ... Ivan Shuvalov in 1760, as painted by Fyodor Rokotov. ... Portrait of Ivan Betskoy, by Alexander Roslin (1777). ... Portrait of Princess Dashkova by Dmitry Levitzky Princess Yekaterina Romanovna Vorontsova-Dashkova (Russian: ) (March 17, 1744–January 4, 1810) was the closest female friend of Empress Catherine the Great and a major figure of the Russian Enlightenment. ... Portrait of Nikolay Novikov, by Dmitry Levitzky. ... Portrait of Mikhailo Mikhailovich Shcherbatov Prince Mikhailo Mikhailovich Shcherbatov (July 22, 1733 - December 12, 1790) was a leading ideologue and exponent of the Russian Enlightenment, on the par with Mikhail Lomonosov and Nikolay Novikov. ... Portrait and signature of Alexander Radishchev Aleksandr Nikolaevich Radishchev (Алекса́ндр Никола́евич Ради́щев) (September 2, 1749 – September 24, 1802) was a Russian author and social critic who was arrested and exiled under... Dositej Obradović Dositej (Dositheus) Dimitrije Obradović (Доситеј Обрадовић) (February 17, 1742 - 1811) was a Serbian author, writer and translator. ... Sir Richard Arkwright (Old Style 23 December 1732 / New Style 3 January 1733 – 3 August 1792), was an Englishman who is credited for inventing the spinning frame — later renamed the water frame following the transition to water power. ... Jeremy Bentham (IPA: ) (26 February [O.S. 15 February 15] 1748) – June 6, 1832) was an English jurist, philosopher, and legal and social reformer. ... Daniel Defoe (1659/1661 [?] â€“ April 24 [?], 1731)[1] was a British writer, journalist, and spy, who gained enduring fame for his novel Robinson Crusoe. ... John Dryden John Dryden (August 19 {August 9 O.S.}, 1631 - May 12 {May 1 O.S.}, 1700) was an influential English poet, literary critic, translator and playwright, who dominated the literary life of Restoration England to such a point that the period came to be known in literary circles... Henry Fielding (April 22, 1707 – October 8, 1754) was an English novelist and dramatist known for his rich earthy humor and satirical prowess and as the author of the novel Tom Jones. ... Edward Gibbon (1737–1794). ... Hobbes redirects here. ... For other persons named Samuel Johnson, see Samuel Johnson (disambiguation). ... For other persons named John Locke, see John Locke (disambiguation). ... Anthony Ashley Cooper, 3rd Earl of Shaftesbury (February 26, 1671 – February 4, 1713), was an English politician, philosopher and writer. ... Sir Isaac Newton FRS (4 January 1643 – 31 March 1727) [ OS: 25 December 1642 – 20 March 1727][1] was an English physicist, mathematician, astronomer, natural philosopher, and alchemist. ... For other persons of the same name, see Thomas Paine (disambiguation). ... Rt Rev Beilby Porteus, DD, Bishop of London (May 8, 1731 _ May 13, 1809) was a leading evangelical churchman and abolitionist. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Mary Wollstonecraft (circa 1797) by John Opie Mary Wollstonecraft (27 April 1759 – 10 September 1797) was a British writer, philosopher and feminist. ... For the second husband of Henrietta Howard, Countess of Suffolk, see George Berkeley (MP). ... Edmund Burke (January 12, 1729[1] – July 9, 1797) was an Anglo-Irish statesman, author, orator, political theorist, and philosopher, who served for many years in the British House of Commons as a member of the Whig party. ... Jonathan Swift Jonathan Swift (November 30, 1667 – October 19, 1745) was an Irish cleric, satirist, essayist, political pamphleteer (first for Whigs then for Tories), and poet, famous for works like Gullivers Travels, A Modest Proposal, A Journal to Stella, The Drapiers Letters, The Battle of the Books, and... For other uses, see John Toland (disambiguation). ... The Scottish Enlightenment was a period of intellectual ferment in Scotland, running from approximately 1740 to 1800. ... Joseph Black Joseph Black (April 16, 1728 - December 6, 1799) was a Scottish physicist and chemist. ... James Boswell, 9th Laird of Auchinleck and 1st Baronet (October 29, 1740 - May 19, 1795) was a lawyer, diarist, and author born in Edinburgh, Scotland. ... For the chain gang fugitive and author from Georgia, see Robert Elliott Burns. ... Adam Ferguson, also known as Ferguson of Raith (June 20, 1723 (O.S.) - February 22, 1816) was a philosopher and historian of the Scottish Enlightenment. ... Francis Hutcheson (August 8, 1694–August 8, 1746) was an Irish philosopher and one of the founding fathers of the Scottish Enlightenment. ... For other persons named David Hume, see David Hume (disambiguation). ... James Hutton, painted by Abner Lowe. ... Henry Home, Lord Kames (1696 - December 27, 1782) was a Scottish philosopher of the 18th century. ... James Burnett, Lord Monboddo (1714 - May 26, 1799) was a Scottish judge, scholar and eccentric. ... James Macpherson (October 27, 1736–February 17, 1796), was a Scottish poet, known as the translator of the Ossian cycle of poems (also known as the Oisín cycle). ... For the Scottish footballer, see Thomas Reid (footballer). ... This article is about the Scottish historian. ... For other persons named Adam Smith, see Adam Smith (disambiguation). ... Dugald Stewart. ... George Turnbull (1698-1748) was a Scottish philosopher and writer on education. ... For other persons named James Watt, see James Watt (disambiguation). ... Latin Europe Latin Europe (Italian, Portuguese and Spanish: Europa latina; French: Europe latine; Romanian: Europa latină; Catalan: Europa llatina; Franco-Provençal: Eropa latina) is composed of those nations and areas in Europe that speak a Romance language and are seen as having a distinct culture from the Germanic and... Pierre Bayle. ... For other uses of Fontenelle, see Fontenelle (disambiguation). ... Montesquieu redirects here. ... François Quesnay (June 4, 1694 - December 16, 1774) was a French economist of the Physiocratic school. ... Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon, by François-Hubert Drouais (1727-1775). ... Rousseau redirects here. ... Portrait of Diderot by Louis-Michel van Loo, 1767 Denis Diderot (October 5, 1713 – July 31, 1784) was a French philosopher and writer. ... Claude Adrien Helvétius (February 26, 1715 - December 26, 1771) was a French philosopher and litterateur. ... Jean le Rond dAlembert, pastel by Maurice Quentin de La Tour Jean le Rond dAlembert (November 16, 1717 – October 29, 1783) was a French mathematician, mechanician, physicist and philosopher. ... Baron dHolbach Paul-Henri Thiry, baron dHolbach (1723 – 1789) was a German-French author, philosopher and encyclopedist. ... Julien Offray de La Mettrie (December 25, 1709 - November 11, 1751) was a French physician and philosopher, the earliest of the materialist writers of the Enlightenment. ... Donatien Alphonse François de Sade (Marquis de Sade) (June 2, 1740 – December 2, 1814) (pronounced IPA: ) was a French aristocrat, french revolutionary and writer of philosophy-laden and often violent pornography. ... “Condorcet” redirects here. ... Lavoisier redirects here. ... Étienne Bonnot de Condillac (September 30, 1715 – August 3, 1780) was a French philosopher. ... Olympe de Gouges (born Marie Gouze; May 7, 1748 – November 3, 1793) was a playwright and journalist whose feminist writings reached a large audience. ... Tocqueville redirects here. ... Giambattista Vico or Giovanni Battista Vico (June 23, 1668 – January 23, 1744) was an Italian philosopher, historian, and jurist. ... Cesare, Marquis of Beccaria-Bonesana (March 15, 1738 – November 28, 1794) was an Italian philosopher and politician best known for his treatise On Crimes and Punishments (1764), which condemned torture and the death penalty and was a founding work in the field of criminology. ... Detail of Pietro Verri monument in Milan. ... Alessandro Verri (November 9, 1741 - September 23, 1816) was an Italian author. ... Giuseppe Parini (Bosisio, now in Lecco province, May 23, 1729 - Milan, 1799) was an Italian satirist and poet. ... Carlo Goldoni Carlo Osvaldo Goldoni (25 February 1707 - 6 February 1793) was a celebrated Italian playwright, whom critics today rank among the European theatres greatest authors. ... Vittorio Alfieri painted by Davids pupil François-Xavier Fabre, in Florence 1793. ... Giuseppe MarcAntonio Baretti (April 24, 1719 - May 5, 1789) was an Italian critic. ... Sebastião José de Carvalho e Melo, Marquis of Pombal, by Louis-Michel van Loo, 1766) Sebastião José de Carvalho e Melo, 1st Count of Oeiras, 1st Marquis of Pombal (in Portuguese, Marquês de Pombal, pron. ... John V, King of Portugal (Portuguese João pron. ... Joseph I (Portuguese José, pron. ... Ienăchiţă Văcărescu (1740-1797) Romanian poet and boyar of Phanariote origin. ... Anton Pann (in the 1790s, Sliven, in Rumelia—November 2, 1854, Bucharest) born Antonie Pantoleon-Petroveanu (also mentioned as Anton Pantoleon), was a Wallachian poet and composer. ... Gheorghe Åžincai Gheorghe Åžincai (February 28, 1754 – November 2, 1816) was an ethnic Romanian Transylvanian historian, philologist, translator, poet, and representative of the Enlightenment-influenced Transylvanian School. ... Jovellanos painted by Goya Gaspar Melchor de Jovellanos (5 January 1744 - 27 November 1811), Spanish statesman and author, was born at Gijón in Asturias, Spain. ... Leandro Fernández de Moratín, born March 10, 1760 – died June 21, 1828, was a Spanish dramatist and neoclassical poet. ... Benito Jerónimo Feijóo y Montenegro (8 October 1676 - 26 September 1764) was a Spanish monk and scholar noted for encouraging scientific thought in Spain. ... Charles III of Spain - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia /**/ @import /skins-1. ... Jorge Juan y Santacilia Jorge Juan y Santacilia (January 5, 1713–June 21, 1773) was a Spanish mathematician, scientist, naval officer, and mariner. ... Antonio de Ulloa (January 12, 1716 _ July 3, 1795) was a Spanish general, explorer, author, astronomer, colonial administrator and the first Spanish governor of Louisiana. ... José Moñino, conde de Floridablanca, painted by Goya José Moñino, conde de Floridablanca Don José Moñino y Redondo, Count of Floridablanca (es: José Moñino y Redondo, conde de Floridablanca) (October 21, 1728 - December 30, 1808), Spanish statesman. ... This article is about Francisco Goya, a Spanish painter. ... For other uses, see Scandinavia (disambiguation). ... This article is in need of attention from an expert on the subject. ... Jens Schielderup Sneedorff Jens Schielderup Sneedorff (22 August 1724–5 June 1764) was a Danish author, professor of political science and royal teacher and a central figure in Denmark-Norway in the Age of Enlightenment. ... Johann Friedrich Struensee By Jens Juel, 1771, Collection of Bomann Museum, Celle, Germany. ... {{unreferenced|article|date=March 2007]] Copper engraving depicting Eggert Ólafssons death. ... Anders Chydenius Anders Chydenius (26 February 1729 – 1 February 1803) was the leading classical liberal of Nordic history. ... Peter ForsskÃ¥l (sometimes also Pehr ForsskÃ¥l, Peter Forskaol, Petrus ForskÃ¥l or Pehr ForsskÃ¥hl) (born in Helsinki, 11 January 1732, died in Yemen, 11 July 1763), Swedish explorer, orientalist and naturalist. ... Gustav III, King of the Swedes, the Goths and the Vends, etc. ... Field Marshal and Count Arvid Bernhard Horn (April 6, 1664 â€“ April 17, 1742) was a statesman and a soldier of the Swedish empire during the period of Sweden-Finland). ... Johan Henrik Kellgren Johan Henrik Kellgren (1 December 1751-1795), Swedish poet and critic, was born at Floby in West Gothland. ... Emanuel Swedenborg, 75, holding the manuscript of Apocalypsis Revelata (1766). ... For other uses, see Capitalism (disambiguation). ... Civil liberties is the name given to freedoms that protect the individual from government. ... are you kiddin ? i was lookin for it for hours ... For other uses, see Ceremonial Deism. ... In philosophy generally, empiricism is a theory of knowledge emphasizing the role of experience, especially sensory perception, in the formation of ideas, while discounting the notion of innate ideas. ... Enlightened absolutism (also known as benevolent or enlightened despotism) is a form of despotism in which rulers were influenced by the Enlightenment. ... A free market is an idealized market, where all economic decisions and actions by individuals regarding transfer of money, goods, and services are voluntary, and are therefore devoid of coercion and theft (some definitions of coercion are inclusive of theft). Colloquially and loosely, a free market economy is an economy... Haskalah (Hebrew: השכלה; enlightenment, education from sekhel intellect, mind ), the Jewish Enlightenment, was a movement among European Jews in the late 18th century that advocated adopting enlightenment values, pressing for better integration into European society, and increasing education in secular studies, Hebrew, and Jewish history. ... For the specific belief system, see Humanism (life stance). ... Classical liberalism (also known as traditional liberalism[1] and laissez-faire liberalism[2]) is a doctrine stressing the importance of human rationality, individual property rights, natural rights, the protection of civil liberties, constitutional limitations of government, free markets, and individual freedom from restraint as exemplified in the writings of Adam... Natural philosophy or the philosophy of nature, known in Latin as philosophia naturalis, is a term applied to the objective study of nature and the physical universe that was regnant before the development of modern science. ... Rationality as a term is related to the idea of reason, a word which following Websters may be derived as much from older terms referring to thinking itself as from giving an account or an explanation. ... For other uses, see Reason (disambiguation). ... A magnet levitating above a high-temperature superconductor demonstrates the Meissner effect. ... This article is about secularism. ... The Encyclopédistes were a group of 18th century writers in France who compiled the Encyclopédie (Encyclopedia) edited by Denis Diderot and Jean le Rond dAlembert. ... Weimar Classicism is, as many historians and scholars argue, a disputed literary movement that took place in Germany and Continental Europe. ... is the 325th day of the year (326th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Events February 6 - The colony Quilombo dos Palmares is destroyed. ... This article is about the capital of France. ... is the 150th day of the year (151st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1778 (MDCCLXXVIII) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Monday of the 11-day slower Julian calendar). ... This article is about the capital of France. ...



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Voltaire's works, and especially his private letters, constantly contain the word "1'infame" and the expression (in full or abbreviated) "ecrasez i'infame." This has been misunderstood in many ways - the mistake going so far as in some cases to suppose that Voltaire meant Christ by this opprobrious expression.
Voltaire knew that the public opinion of his time reserved its highest prizes for a capable and successful dramatist, and he was determined to win these prizes.
Voltaire never dwells too long on this point, stays to laugh at what he has said, elucidates or comments on his own jokes, guffaws over them or exaggerates their form.
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