Voltaire by Brent Anderson

Voltaire was a French writer during the Age of Enlightenment most popular for his satirical novel Candide. He was a versatile writer that could produce works in almost every form, including plays, poems, novels, essays and historical and scientific works. He wrote more than 20,000 letters and around 2,000 books and pamphlets. Voltaire was a satirical polemicist which meant he made use of his works to criticize intolerance and French institutions.

Voltaire’s actual name was Francois-Marie Arouet, he adapted this name after a childhood nickname he had. He was taunted for his change in names such as from Chevalier de Rohan-Chabot a French which got so mad after Voltaire shamed him that he arranged Voltaire to be beaten up by thugs a few days later. Seeking revenge Voltaire challenged Rohan to a duel. Rohan declined and had ordered Voltaire to be banished to the Bastille, but Voltaire put up a compromise for him to be banished to London instead. French officials agreed and his permanent home was now in London, England.

Overall Voltaire influenced a lot of things and people during the Age of Enlightenment. Such as two of his works of poetry the Henriade and the Maid of Orleans which impacted many future works of poetry as they were set as an example for others. He was regarded as one of the most popular people of his time and published many of the great works of the time. Voltaire’s other works also influenced other writers to copy his style in their own pieces.

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