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  Dagobert I, King of the Franks  
Dagobert I was the king of Austrasia (623–634), king of all the Franks (629–634), and king of Neustria and Burgundy (629–639). He was the last king of the Merovingian dynasty to wield any real royal power. Dagobert was the first of the Fran...
 
    Christophe Plantin, Printer  
Christophe Plantin was an influential Renaissance humanist and book printer and publisher. Besides the polyglot Bible, Plantin published many other works of note, such as editions of St. Augustine and St. Jerome, the botanical works of Dodo...
 
    Bartholomew's Day Massacre, Huguenots  
The St. Bartholomew's Day massacre (Massacre de la Saint-Barthélemy in French) in 1572 was a targeted group of assassinations, followed by a wave of Roman Catholic mob violence, both directed against the Huguenots (French Calvinist Protesta...
 
    Cardinal Mazarin, Minister of France  
Jules Mazarin was an Italian cardinal, diplomat, and politician, who served as the chief minister of France from 1642 until his death. Mazarin succeeded his mentor, Cardinal Richelieu. He was a noted collector of art and jewels, particularl...
 
    André Le Nôtre, Landscape Architect of Versailles  
André Le Nôtre (or Le Nostre) was a French landscape architect and the principal gardener of King Louis XIV of France. Most notably, he was the landscape architect who designed the park of the Palace of Versailles, and his work represents t...
 
    Nicolas Fouquet, Fell out of favor with Louis XIV  
Nicolas Fouquet, marquis de Belle-Île, vicomte de Melun et Vaux was the Superintendent of Finances in France from 1653 until 1661 under King Louis XIV. He fell out of favor with the young king, probably because of his extravagant displays o...
 
    Palace of Versailles  
Back in 1623, Louis XIII - father of Louis XIV - built a 'hunting lodge, a little gentleman's chateau' of brick, stone, and slate at Versailles. The king liked it so much that he soon had it enlarged by his 'royal engineer and architect', P...
 
    Louis XIV, The Sun King  
Louis XIV, known as Louis the Great (Louis le Grand) or the Sun King (le Roi-Soleil), was a monarch of the House of Bourbon who ruled as King of France and Navarre from 1643 until his death. His reign of 72 years and 110 days is the longest...
 
    Voltaire, Author and Philosopher  
François-Marie Arouet, better known by the pen name Voltaire, was a French Enlightenment writer and philosopher famous for his wit and for his advocacy of civil liberties, including freedom of religion and free trade. Voltaire was a proli...
 
    Émilie du Châtelet, Mathematician  
Gabrielle Émilie Le Tonnelier de Breteuil, marquise du Châtelet was a French mathematician, physicist, and author during the Age of Enlightenment. Her crowning achievement is considered to be her translation and commentary on Isaac Newton's...
 
    Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Writer, Philosopher  
As a brilliant, undisciplined, and unconventional thinker, Jean-Jacques Rousseau spent most of his life being driven by controversy back and forth between Paris and his native Geneva. Rousseau first attracted wide-spread attention with his...
 
    Claude Adrien Helvétius, Philosopher  
Claude Adrien Helvétius was a French philosopher and littérateur. In 1758, Helvétius published his philosophical magnum opus, a work called De l'esprit (On Mind). Its atheistic, utilitarian and egalitarian doctrines raised a public outcry a...
 
    Baron d'Holbach, Philosopher  
Paul-Henri Thiry, Baron d'Holbach was a French-German author, philosopher, encyclopedist and a prominent figure in the French Enlightenment. He was born Paul Heinrich Dietrich in Edesheim, near Landau in the Rhenish Palatinate, but lived an...
 
    Claude Balbastre, French Composer  
Claude Balbastre was a French composer, organist, harpsichordist and fortepianist. He was one of the most famous musicians of his time. Balbastre's father, Bénigne, a church organist in Dijon, had 18 children from two marriages; Claude w...
 
    Charles-Augustin de Coulomb, Electric Charge  
Charles-Augustin de Coulomb was a French physicist. He was best known for developing Coulomb's law, the definition of the electrostatic force of attraction and repulsion, but also did important work on friction. The SI unit of electric char...
 
       
 
         
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