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Anatole France

Anatole FranceAKA Jacques Anatole François Thibault

Born: 16-Apr-1844
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: 13-Oct-1924
Location of death: Saint-Cyr-sur-Loire, France
Cause of death: unspecified
Remains: Buried, Cimetière de Neuilly-sur-Seine, Neuilly-sur-Seine, France

Gender: Male
Religion: Atheist
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
Occupation: Novelist, Playwright

Nationality: France
Executive summary: French novelist

Military service: French Army (1871)

French novelist, critic, skeptic and satirist Anatole France attended a Catholic school, where he learned to hate the church. Mocking all things Catholic became a running subtext in his work. His father ran a bookstore, and France (a pseudonym; his birth name was Jacques Anatole François Thibault) got his education prowling the shop's shelves, devouring book after book. He briefly attended university at École Nationale des Chartes, and before his writing became popular enough to support him, he worked more than a decade as an assistant librarian to the French Senate.

With Émile Zola he came to the defense of Alfred Dreyfus, falsely accused in an infamous French scandal which emerged again in the author's best known book, Penguin Island. His novel The Red Lily contains perhaps his most oft-quoted line, translated into English as "The law, in its majestic equality, forbids the rich as well as the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal bread."

In the last years of his life, all his works were listed in the Roman Catholic Church's Index of Forbidden Books. His novels were popular both in and beyond his native nation, earning accolades including the 1921 Nobel Prize, and at his death in 1924, Time magazine described him as "perhaps the best-known and most highly respected literary artist in the world".

Father: Francois Noel Thibault (bookseller)
Mother: Antoinette Galas
Wife: Valerie Guerin de Sauville (m. 1877, div. 1893)
Daughter: Suzanne (b. 1881, d. 1917)
Mistress: Madame Armand de Caillavet (twenty-five year relationship, d. 1910)
Wife: Emma Laprevotte (housekeeper, m. 1920)

    High School: Collège Stanislas, Paris
    University: École Nationale des Chartes, Paris (attended)

    Nobel Prize for Literature 1921
    French Official Ass't Librarian for the French Senate (1876-90)
    French Academy 1896
    French National Association of Freethinkers
    International PEN
    Dreyfus Affair
    French Ancestry

Author of books:
Alfred de Vigny (1869, non-fiction)
The Crime of Sylvestre Bonnard (1881, novel)
Le Château de Vaux-le-Vicomte (1888, non-fiction)
Balthasar (1889, short stories)
Thais (1889, novel)
The Queen Pédauque (1893, novel)
The Opinions of Jerome Coignard (1893, novel)
The Red Lily (1894, novel)
The Well of Saint Claire (1895, novel)
The Garden of Epicurus (1895, aphorisms)
Contemporary History (1896, novel; four volumes)
The White Stone (1903, novel)
Penguin Island (1905, novel)
The Church and the Republic (1905, non-fiction)
The Life of Joan of Arc (1908, biography)
Rabelais (1909, novel)
The Gods are Athirst (1912, novel)
My Friend's Book (1913, novel)
Le Génie Latin (1913, non-fiction)
The Revolt of the Angels (1914, novel)
The Human Tragedy (1917, novel)
The Crime of Sylvestre Bonnard (1918, novel)
At the Sign of the Reine Pedauque (1919, novel)
The Bloom of Life (1923, novel)
Pierre Noziere (1923, novel)

Wrote plays:
Au Petit Bonheur (1898)
Crainquebille (1903)
La Comédie de Celui qui Épousa une Femme Muette (1908)
Le Mannequin D'osier (1928)

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