Voltaire, Précis du siècle de Louis XV [Summary of the Age of Louis XV]

Janet Godden (University of Oxford); James Hanrahan (Trinity College Dublin)
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Précis du siècle de Louis XV

is not as well known as it should be for a number of reasons. First, in historiographical terms, Enlightenment history has never recovered from the rise of historicism and the latter’s critique of Enlightenment presentism and universalist pretensions (Volpilhac-Auger, 2009; Force, 2009). Second, the reign of Louis XV – great-grandson of


– has been forgotten somewhat in the history of the French eighteenth century, which is generally viewed as the age of the


and a prelude to the French Revolution (Jones, 2002). Third, and most importantly, Voltaire’s history of the age of Louis XV was not a work that he planned and composed in a coherent way, but instead it emerged from the development of other works, as an…

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Citation: Godden, Janet, James Hanrahan. "Précis du siècle de Louis XV". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 18 January 2022 [https://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=21520, accessed 22 June 2024.]

21520 Précis du siècle de Louis XV 3 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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