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Social Studies
Historical biographies

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Voltaire was most commonly known for his poetry, plays, historical works, and philosophical works. He was considered one of France's greatest Enlightenment writers. His full name is Francois-Marie Arouet, but he adopted the nickname Voltaire in 1718.Aside from his writing and playwriting, he had strong views regarding government. Voltaire wanted a government where there was only one monarch king that ruled. He supported personal and philosophical beliefs. To this very day, Voltaire is known for the impact he had on his era.


Born: November 21st, 1694 (Paris, France)Died: May 5th, 1778(Paris, France)

"An ideal government is democracy tempered with assassination.""In general, the art of government consists in taking as much money as possible from one party of the citizens to give to the other.""Its dangerous to be right when the government is wrong.""Judge of a man by his questions rather than by his answers." - Voltaire

Lasting Impact

Voltaire is significant because he stood behind his beliefs and spoke up although it led to him being exiled multiple times. His passion for writing led him to believing in free speech and press. Today, people still read his works and his legacy lives on.


the Henriade, The Maid of Orleans, La Pucelle, Candide, Zadig, Micromégas, Plato's Dream, De l'esprit, Traité sur la tolérance, Dictionnaire philosophique, Quelques arpents de neige, and many more...




Key Terms

Below is one of Voltaire's famous works.

1. satirical polemicist: to engage in controversy2. neoclassical: costituting a revival of the classical espiecially in literature/music/art.3. dogmas: a belief that is accepted by members of a group4. apocryphal: (a story or statement) of doubtful authenticity5. anachronisms: belonging or appropriate to a period other than in which it exists.6. eurocentrism: belief in the preeminence of Europe and the Europeans.


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