Voltaire's English Letters and Candide

Topics: French Revolution, Religion, Candide Pages: 2 (523 words) Published: February 18, 2002
In 1764 Voltaire wrote one of the world's greatest satires, Candide. Candide pokes at much of Europe and attacks simple human follies and frailties. Most of the characters are killed brutally or fiercely hurt for idiotic reasons. The overall message of "Candide" is that every human being has the power to carve out their own destiny. And that each individual is not subject to God's grand plan, or the idea of predestination. Voltaire made his idea of God and divine right clear in Candide. He did not believe that the world was picked from the cosmos and that it was not "the best of all possible worlds."

There have been many ideas of motives behind "Candide." One being his disagreements with the establishments of Absolute Monarchy and the state of the Catholic Church. Voltaire argued not one against their existence as powers but with their rules, beliefs, and laws that they imposed on their populous. Voltaire, who always fought for liberty, thought the individual should have the right to worship what they chose and the only acceptable spiritual belief was Deism. Of course, "Everything is well, only in Eldorado."

When Voltaire had finally regained permission to return to Paris. He immediately began to write another play and organize a company to act it. Voltaire was passionately fond of the stage. In his later years he built a theatre of his own at Ferney and frequently took part on the stage in his own plays. Voltaire, upon his return to Paris had become quite fond of Adrienne Lecouvreur, and actress, who died shortly afterwards. Due to her profession she was denied Christian burial and taken out of the city at night and "thrown in the kennel" resembling a dog. She was considered the greatest actress of her time and that "she had all the virtues but virtue." After witnessing this, Voltaire worked tirelessly to improve the condition of the actors of his time. Actors were said to be "paid by the king and excommunicated by the church." This was Voltaire's greatest...
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