Voltaire – 1694 to 1778 – French Philosopher

Voltaire, was the pen name of Francois Marie Arouet. He was a philosopher, satirist, historian, novelist, and dramatist.
He was born in Paris, educated by Jesuits. He studied law, then turned to writing.

He sharply attacked the political institutions of his time in a brilliant and witty prose style. This brought him fame, but he gained enemies at court, and was forced to go into exile in England (1726-9).

Back in France, he wrote plays, poetry, historical and scientific treatises, and his Lettres philosophiques. He moved to Berlin at the invitation of Frederick the Great (1750-3). In 1755 he settled near Geneva, where he wrote the satirical short story, ‘Candide’ a satire against social wrongs. Voltaire’s philosophical writings helped bring about the Fr. Revolution.

The World As It Goes

Among the genii who preside over the empires of the earth, Ithuriel held one of the first ranks, and had the department of Upper Asia. He one morning descended into the abode of Babouc,

Memnon the Philosopher

Memnon one day took it into his head to become a great philosopher. "To be perfectly happy," said he to himself, "I have nothing to do but to divest myself entirely of passions;

Plato’s Dream

Plato was a great dreamer, as many others have been since his time. He dreampt that mankind were formerly double; and that, as a punishment for their crimes, they were divided into male and female.

Pleasure In Having No Pleasure

"Hitherto," said Candide to Martin, "I have met with none but unfortunate people in the whole habitable globe, except in El Dorado, but, observe those gondoliers, are they not perpetually singing?"

The Two Comforters

The great philosopher Citosile once said to a woman who was disconsolate, and who had good reason to be so: "Madame, the queen of England, daughter to Henry IV., was as wretched as you.

An Adventure in India

All the world knows that Pythagoras while he resided in India, attended the school of the Gymnosophists, and learned the language of beasts and plants.

The Study of Nature

There can be no doubt that everything in the world is governed by fatality. My own life is a convincing proof of this doctrine. An English lord, with whom I was a great favorite,

Ancient Faith and Fable

In order to be successful in their efforts to govern the multitude, rulers have endeavored to instill all the visionary notions possible into the minds of their subjects.

Jeannot and Colin

Many persons, worthy of credit, have seen Jeannot and Colin at school in the town of Issoire, in Auvergne, France,—a town famous all over the world for its college and its caldrons.