The historical Cyrano — Savinien Cyrano de Bergerac — was born near Paris on March 6, 1619. His parents, who were prominent but not noble, came from the town of Bergerac in southern France. And so, when he became old enough to care, Cyrano added "de Bergerac" to his name for the sole purpose of impressing people. He did, indeed, have an enormous nose, and on one occasion actually did describe it as preceding him by a quarter of an hour. In fact, he was such a renowned swordsman that no one else would have dared to make such a remark; many men died for much less. He entered the military profession, fighting and sustaining wounds at Arras. He retired because of his wounds and became a philosopher at the College de Beauvais in Paris. The historical Cyrano wrote poetry, political pamphlets defending Mazarin, some plays — Moliere really did use two scenes written by Cyrano —
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