Théodore de Banville

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Theodore de Banville, photograph by Nadar Felix Nadar 1820-1910 Portrait de Theodore de Banville.jpg
Théodore de Banville, photograph by Nadar

Théodore Faullain de Banville (14 March 1823 – 13 March 1891) was a French poet and writer. His work was influential on the Symbolist movement in French literature in the late 19th century.

The Symbolist Manifesto was published on 18 September 1886 in the French newspaper Le Figaro by the Greek-born poet and essayist Jean Moréas. It describes a new literary movement, an evolution from and rebellion against both romanticism and naturalism, and it asserts the name of Symbolism as not only the appropriate for that movement, but also uniquely reflective of how creative minds approach the creation of art.

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Biography

Banville was born in Moulins in Allier, Auvergne, the son of a captain in the French navy. His boyhood, by his own account, was cheerlessly passed at a lycée in Paris; he was not harshly treated, but took no part in the amusements of his companions. On leaving school with but slender means of support, he devoted himself to letters, and in 1842 published his first volume of verse (Les Cariatides), which was followed by Les Stalactites in 1846. The poems encountered some adverse criticism, but secured for their author the approbation and friendship of Alfred de Vigny and Jules Janin.

Moulins, Allier Prefecture and commune in Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes, France

Moulins is a commune in central France, capital of the Allier department. It is located on the Allier River.

Allier Department of France

Allier is a French department located in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region of central France named after the river Allier. Moulins is the prefecture and the INSEE and Post Code is 03.

Alfred de Vigny French poet, playwright, and novelist

Alfred Victor, Comte de Vigny was a French poet and early leader of French Romanticism. He also produced novels, plays, and translations of Shakespeare.

From then on, Banville's life was steadily devoted to literary production and criticism. He printed other volumes of verse, among which the Odes funambulesques (1857) received unstinted praise from Victor Hugo, to whom they were dedicated. Later, several comedies in verse were produced at the Théâtre Français and on other stages; and from 1853 onwards a stream of prose flowed from his industrious pen, including studies of Parisian manners, sketches of well-known persons, and a series of tales, most of which were republished in his collected works (18751878). He also wrote freely for reviews, and acted as dramatic critic for more than one newspaper. Throughout a life spent mainly in Paris, Banville's genial character and cultivated mind won him the friendship of the chief men of letters of his time.

Victor Hugo French poet, novelist, and dramatist

Victor Marie Hugo was a French poet, novelist, and dramatist of the Romantic movement. Hugo is considered to be one of the greatest and best-known French writers. Outside France, his most famous works are the novels Les Misérables, 1862, and The Hunchback of Notre-Dame, 1831. In France, Hugo is known primarily for his poetry collections, such as Les Contemplations and La Légende des siècles.

Theodore de Banville Theodore de Banville.JPG
Théodore de Banville

Legacy

In 1858 he was made a Chevalier de la Légion d'honneur, and was promoted to an Officier de la Légion d'honneur in 1886. He died in Paris in 1891 at the age of 68, and was buried in Montparnasse Cemetery.

There is a street named after him in the 17th Arrondissement in Paris. There is also a street named Theodore de Banville in Nice, France.

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