Format Hardcover
Publication Date 10/15/10
ISBN 9781605981192
Trim Size / Pages 9.3 x 6.4 in / 560

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Voltaire

A Life

Ian Davidson

The definitive biography of Voltaire’s life— from his scandalous love affairs and political machinations to his brilliant philosophy.

We think of Voltaire as the epitome of the enlightenment; in his own time he was also the most famous and controversial figure in Europe. This dazzling new biography celebrates his extraordinary life.

Davidson tells the whole, rich story of Voltaire`s life (1694-1778): his early imprisonment in the Bastille; exile in England and his mastery of English; an obsession with money, of which he made a huge amount; a scandalous love life; his infatuation with Frederick the Great; a long exile on the borders of Switzerland; his passion for watch-making; his human rights campaigns and his triumphant return to Paris to die there as celebrity extraordinaire. Throughout all of this, Voltaire's life was always informed by two things: a belief in the essential value of toleration in the face of fanaticism; and in the right of every man to think and say what he liked. It is rare to have such a vivid portrait of a great man.

After graduating in Classics from Cambridge, Ian Davidson worked for the Financial Times for many years as their Paris correspondent and chief foreign affairs columnist. He is also the author of Voltaire (Pegasus) and Voltaire in Exile (Grove). Ian lives in England.

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