Denis Diderot, French encyclopedist

Denis Diderot, French encyclopedist

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Credit: COLLECTION ABECASIS/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Denis Diderot. 1864 illustration of the French philosopher, art critic and writer Denis Diderot (1713-1784). Diderot is best known, along with Jean le Rond d'Alembert, as co-founder, chief editor and contributor to the Encyclopedie, a general encyclopedia published in France between 1751 and 1772. The Encyclopedie is most famous for representing the thought of the Enlightenment and was mired in controversy. As a philosopher he speculated on free will, believed all human behaviour was determined by heredity and rejected the Idea of Progress.

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