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Unformatted text preview: Voltaire began his literary career as a tragic poet, if one excepts minor verse; he was to end it as one — and to end it triumphantly. In the spring of 1778, his last play, the tragedy Irene, was accepted for performance in Paris, and the old man was determined to be present at the premiere. His return to the city from which he had been exiled time and again created a sensation. He was honored by the French Academy as its most distinguished member. But his rapidly failing health made it impossible for him to witness the great success of his tragedy on the opening night. He was able, however, to attend the sixth performance and to receive the acclaim of an enthusiastic audience. Voltaire, the longtime valetudinarian who now was eighty-four years of age, died on May 30, 1778. Typically, the man who had erected a Catholic Church on one of his estates (having the inscription...
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This note was uploaded on 12/05/2011 for the course ENGLISH 101 taught by Professor Staff during the Fall '11 term at Texas State.
- Fall '11