Fontenelle, La Bruyère's enemy (1657-1757) ; he was a prolific writer in various genres, and also wrote poems, plays and speeches on commission for other authors. But La Bruyère is grossly unfair to Fontenelle, who was far more than a bel esprit, and can indeed be counted a precursor of the philosophes, with his Entretiens sur la pluralité des mondes (1686).

Note from Of Society And Conversation, the fifth chapter of 'Characters' by Jean De La Bruyère (1688)

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