It's the birthday of Voltaire, (books by this author) the man who helped spark the Enlightenment in France, born François-Marie Arouet in Paris (1694). He was a well-known playwright and poet. He spent most of his late life in exile, and he wrote most of his work from England. In the last year of his life, 1778, he was allowed to return home to Paris. More than 300 people came to visit him his first day in the city, including Benjamin Franklin.
Voltaire wrote, "God is a comedian, playing to an audience too afraid to laugh."
And, "To succeed in the world it is not enough to be stupid, you must also be well-mannered."
And, "Let us read and let us dance ... two amusements that will never do any harm to the world."