The heart of the eighteenth century enlightenment is the loosely organized activity of prominent french thinkers of the mid decades of the eighteenth century the so called philosopheseg voltaire dalembert diderot montesquieuthe philosophes constituted an informal society of men of letters who collaborated on a loosely defined project of enlightenment exemplified by the . Denis diderot born october 5 1713 langres france died july 31 1784 paris french man of letters and philosopher who from 1745 to 1772 served as chief editor of the encyclopdie one of the principal works of the age of enlightenment. Denis diderot 1713 1784 denis diderot was the most prominent of the french encyclopedists he was educated by the jesuits and refusing to enter one of the learned professions was turned adrift by his father and came to paris where he lived from hand to mouth for a time. Denis diderot was a french philosopher of the enlightenment a major author of the encyclopedia supplement to the voyage of bougainville and jacques the fatalist diderot was a pacifist a rationalist an advocate of political tolerance and deistic criticism of the church his philosophy is quite similar to that of voltaire
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