[[quoteright:300:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/1311318-Voltaire_7767.jpg]]

->''"If God did not exist, it would be necessary to invent him."''

->''"In a well-organized country, the smaller number makes the greater number work for it, feed it and submit to its government."''

Real name '''François Marie Arouet'''. French dude, 1694-1778. [[DeadpanSnarker Satirical]] [[ThePhilosopher philosopher]]. He is best known for his witty defense of civil liberties, freedom of religion, and free trade (he had staunch liberal views on economic issues). His views earned him one year in the Bastille at the time of the Régence, where he gained his penname. [[WarForFunAndProfit He would later make a huge fortune in military furnitures]] and gain great influence in the French and Prussian royal courts under kings Louis XV and Frederick II the Great. He would go on to inspire multiple philosophers and satirical authors, especially amongst those who supported his views. His writings also inspired both the [[TheFrenchRevolution French]] and [[UsefulNotes/TheAmericanRevolution American]] revolutions. He was also an historian and a scientist who published multiple essays. Prolific, as he published more than 20,000 letters and 2,000 books and pamphlets. [[FunWithAcronyms The name Voltaire comes from ''Arouet le jeune'' ("Arouet the Young"), converted to Latin script where U=V and J=I; AROVET L I -> VOLTAIRE]]. He is [[AuthorsOfQuote eminently quotable]], and [[BeamMeUpScotty mis-quotable]]. His [[{{Archenemy}} favourite target]] was Creator/JeanJacquesRousseau.[[note]]Ironically, both died the same year and rest in front of each other in the same crypt of the Pantheon in Paris.[[/note]]

Probably shouldn't be confused with [[Music/{{Voltaire}} the musician]].

!!Stuff by Voltaire:
* ''Letters on the English'', 1733, revised 1778
* ''Zadig'', 1747
* ''Micromégas'', 1752
* ''Literature/{{Candide}}'', 1759,
* ''Treatise on Tolerance'', 1763
* ''Ce qui plaît aux dames'', 1764
* ''Philosophical Dictionary'', 1764
* ''The Ingenue'', 1767

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!!This author's works provide examples of:

* AnAesop: In every single of his philosophical tales.
* AlienInvasion: ''Micromégas'' may be the UrExample.
* BadassBookworm: Candide and many other characters
* CrapsackWorld: In ''Candide'', everywhere except Eldorado. In ''L'Ingénu'', everywhere except in the main character's tribe.
* DeityOfHumanOrigin: Used to provide the page quote.
* DoubleStandard: His beliefs on Judaism are very much this. He believed that Christians should be tolerant of other peoples and religions, but Voltaire himself '''hated''' Jews and [[ValuesDissonance once wrote that all of them should be punished]]. Ouch.
** He explicitly vowed to destroy Christianism (either Catholicism and Protestantism) in some of his correspondances with Jean le Rond D'Alembert, one of the authors of ''L'Encyclopédie'', because he thought they were continuations of Judaism.
* EarnYourHappyEnding: Candide.
* ForeignCultureFetish: He had a bit of a thing for the English, particularly their [[UsefulNotes/BritishPoliticalSystem political institutions]].
* GettingCrapPastTheRadar: In ''Candide'', "the sage Doctor Pangloss giv[es] a lecture in experimental philosophy to her mother's chambermaid". "[S]he perfectly well understood the force of the doctor's reasoning upon causes and effects".
* RomanticismVersusEnlightenment: Enlightenment, despite the cynicism.
* {{Satire}}
* SkilledButNaive: Candide and l'Ingénu both have names which means "naive". Indeed, they are skilled in many ways, especially books, but very ignorant towards the reality of their world.
* SlidingScaleOfIdealismVsCynicism: Rather cynicism, but with some idealist hints.
* TakeThat: "I have never made but one prayer to God, a very short one: Oh Lord, make my enemies ridiculous. [[CrowningMomentOfFunny And God granted it.]]"
* YouHaveFailedMe: Candide, witnessing the execution of [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Byng John Byng]], a British admiral executed for losing a battle, is told that "in this country, it is good to kill an admiral from time to time, in order to encourage the others".

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