Picture of author.

Anatole France (1844–1924)

Author of Penguin Island

348+ Works 5,507 Members 96 Reviews 14 Favorited
There is 1 open discussion about this author. See now.

About the Author

Anatole France was the pen name of Jacques Anatole Francois Thibault, who was born in Paris in 1844. The son of a bookseller, Thibault had a lifelong interest in literature. He worked as a schoolteacher, as a reader and editor for publishing houses, and as an assistant librarian in Paris' Senate show more Library, in addition to writing fiction, plays, poetry, criticism, and autobiographical stories. In his lifetime, Thibault was considered one of France's most beloved authors, and he received the Nobel Prize for literature in 1921. France's first novel was The Famished Cat, published in 1879. France's best-known novels include Monsieur Bergeret in Paris, The Crime of Sylvestre Bonnard, Member of the Institute (for which he received an award from the French Academy in 1881), At the Sign of the Reine Pedauque, Penguin Island, Thais (which became the basis for an opera), The Gods Are Athirst, and The Revolt of the Angels. During the late 1890s Thibault became very involved in political and social issues. He was especially committed to socialism and to the fight against anti-Semitism, mainly as a result of the Dreyfuss affair. This new awareness was reflected in his writing, particularly in books such as Penguin Island, which criticized contemporary French society, and The Revolt of the Angels, which parodied the Catholic Church. He also became the literary advisor to l'Humanitie, an influential socialist newspaper, and frequently contributed articles to it until, dissatisfied with the Communist party that had eventually evolved, he renounced all political ties to the left just before his death in 1924. (Bowker Author Biography) show less
Image credit: Courtesy of the NYPL Digital Gallery (image use requires permission from the New York Public Library)


Works by Anatole France

Penguin Island (1908) — Author — 851 copies
The Gods Will Have Blood (1912) — Author — 812 copies
The Revolt of the Angels (1914) — Author — 460 copies
Thaïs (1890) — Author — 424 copies
The Crime of Sylvestre Bonnard (1881) — Author — 388 copies
At the Sign of the Queen Pédauque (1892) — Author — 282 copies
The Red Lily (1894) — Author — 254 copies
My Friend's Book (1885) — Author — 99 copies
Crainquebille (1925) — Author — 75 copies
The Procurator of Judaea (1902) 69 copies
The Amethyst Ring (1899) — Author — 55 copies
Monsieur Bergeret in Paris (1880) — Author — 53 copies
A Mummer's Tale (1921) 53 copies
Le mannequin d'osier (1897) 52 copies
The Well of Saint Clare (1895) 51 copies
Mother of Pearl (1921) 47 copies
Thais / The Crime of Sylvestre Bonnard (1881) — Author — 46 copies
The garden of Epicurus (1894) 41 copies
The White Stone (1905) 41 copies
Little Pierre (1918) 34 copies
Jocasta / The Famished Cat (1879) — Author — 32 copies
Pierre Nozière (1849) 30 copies
The Man Who Married a Dumb Wife (1921) — Author — 29 copies
The Seven Wives of Bluebeard {story} (1909) — Author — 27 copies
Balthasar (1923) — Author — 25 copies
Vie de Jeanne d'Arc (1908) 24 copies
The Bloom of Life (1925) 23 copies
The Merrie Tales of Jacques Tournebroche (1923) — Author — 22 copies
France. Oeuvres. Tome 1/4 (La Pléiade) (1984) — Author — 16 copies
Rabelais (1928) 12 copies
La vie littéraire (1911) 12 copies
Clio (1925) 11 copies
Paita (1951) 9 copies
Marguerite (1921) 9 copies
Putois (2010) 8 copies
The human tragedy (2002) 7 copies
Inglite mäss ; Nooruslugusid — Author — 7 copies
Il libro del bibliofilo (2002) 7 copies
Anatole France (2016) 6 copies
Balthasar and Other Works (2009) 6 copies
The Latin genius (1924) 6 copies
Die Rosenholzmöbel (1973) — Author — 5 copies
The Snuggly Satyricon (2020) — Contributor — 5 copies
Apologie pour le plagiat (2013) 4 copies
Anatole France : Oeuvres, tome 4 (1994) — Author — 4 copies
Anatole France : Oeuvres, tome 2 (1987) — Author — 4 copies
Anatole France : Oeuvres, tome 3 (1991) — Author — 4 copies
Pages choisies 4 copies
Revolt of the Angels (2018) 3 copies
Les Autels de la peur (1994) 3 copies
Obras escogidas (1900) 3 copies
Les noces corinthiennes — Author — 3 copies
Count Morin, deputy (1921) 3 copies
PIERRE 2 copies
Pierres barndom 2 copies
Merry Tales of Childhood (1931) 2 copies
El pozo de Santa Clara (2017) 2 copies
En vacances 2 copies
Contos Memórias (2011) 2 copies
Madame De Luzy 2 copies
The Juggler of Notre Dame (2018) 2 copies
Bonnard Szilveszter vétke ; A fehér kövön (1987) — Author — 2 copies
Under the rose 2 copies
Gesammelte Werke (2014) 2 copies
Novellid. Esseed. Kõned (1988) 2 copies
Min vens bok 2 copies
KOMM L'ATREBATE (2007) 1 copy
Povestiri 1 copy
Craiquebille 1 copy
Opowiadania 1 copy
Ahankar 1 copy
THAIIS 1 copy
pathways 1 copy
Opere 1 copy
Molière 1 copy
Novels, &c. 1 copy
Lucifer 1 copy
Camille 1 copy
Cuentos 1 copy
Works (2016) 1 copy
Les enfants 1 copy

Associated Works

The Clown of God (1978) — some editions — 1,519 copies
50 Great Short Stories (1952) — Contributor — 1,216 copies
Pleasures and Regrets (1896) — Foreword, some editions — 411 copies
Critical Theory Since Plato (1971) — Contributor, some editions — 393 copies
A Treasury of Short Stories (1947) — Contributor — 286 copies
In the Nursery (My Book House) (1932) — Contributor — 279 copies
A World of Great Stories (1947) 253 copies
No Tomorrow (1812) — Foreword, some editions — 197 copies
Atheism: A Reader (2000) — Contributor — 181 copies
Candide [Norton Critical Edition, 1st ed.] (1966) — Contributor — 150 copies
Thirty Famous One-Act Plays (1943) — Contributor — 106 copies
Great Short Novels of Adult Fantasy (1972) — Contributor — 99 copies
Famous Modern Ghost Stories (1921) — Contributor — 86 copies
French Short Stories (1998) — Contributor — 82 copies
The Best of All Possible Worlds (1980) — Contributor — 81 copies
Golden Cities, Far (1970) — Contributor — 79 copies
Great Stories by Nobel Prize Winners (1959) — Contributor — 72 copies
Great French Short Stories (1946) — Contributor — 71 copies
The Second Dedalus Book of Decadence the Black Feast (1992) — Contributor — 48 copies
Short Stories of the Sea (1984) — Contributor — 25 copies
The Best Sea Stories (1986) — Contributor — 21 copies
The Penguin Book of French Short Stories (1968) — Contributor, some editions — 18 copies
Frantic Comedy: Eight Plays of Knock-About Fun (1991) — Contributor — 18 copies
All verdens fortellere (1990) — Contributor, some editions — 15 copies
Law in Action: An Anthology of the Law in Literature (1947) — Contributor — 13 copies
The World of Law, Volume I : The Law in Literature (1960) — Contributor — 12 copies
Bachelor's Quarters: Stories from Two Worlds (1944) — Contributor — 7 copies
The Story Survey (1953) — Contributor — 6 copies
Great Love Scenes from Famous Novels (1943) — Contributor — 5 copies
The Ambassador (1961) — Contributor — 5 copies
Tyve mesterfortællinger — Contributor, some editions — 4 copies
Historie Osobliwe I Fantastyczne — Contributor — 3 copies
Representative Modern Short Stories (1929) — Contributor — 2 copies
French short stories (1933) — Contributor — 2 copies
Meesters der Franse vertelkunst (1950) — Contributor — 2 copies
The College Short Story Reader (1948) — Contributor — 2 copies
The Nude in the French Theatre (1953) — Introduction — 1 copy
The Undying Past — Contributor — 1 copy
Fantastyczne Opowieści — Contributor — 1 copy
フランス短篇24 (現代の世界文学) (1989) — Contributor — 1 copy


Common Knowledge



1914 Anatole France: The Revolt of the Angels in Literary Centennials (October 2017)
hey in cghh (April 2013)


I enjoyed this a great deal. A reminder of the “genteel” times of the 19th century. While I wouldn't mistake it for life-changing literature, it was certainly a wonderful story, wonderfully told. I was particularly taken with the translation (by Lafcadio Hearn!)
Gypsy_Boy | 7 other reviews | Aug 25, 2023 |
An absolutely peerless writer; I doubt that I could pick a page at random and not find something pithy or witty or amazingly insightful. The story follows the adventures of Jacques Tournebroche, a young man plucked from his father’s “restaurant” in the very early 17s by a travelling monk and scholar who teaches him Latin, Greek, and the classics. The two are hired by an alchemist to translate the works of ancient authors. Throw in some depressingly antisemitic rants relating to a Jewish character whose image panders to the worst stereotypes and you have what might even be called a rousing adventure story. Much of the book is devoted to satirizing the church and religion, though the book is actually based on a 17th-century occult text. There are innumerable references to ancient and medieval authors, many of whom are unknown. And yet, for all its challenges, I found it to be a real page-turner.… (more)
Gypsy_Boy | 5 other reviews | Aug 24, 2023 |
A collection of six stories by a master. Not his best stuff though, as with most books of his that I’ve read, when he’s “on” France is a true master stylist. The title story is about the magus, Balthasar, one of the three kings said to have visited Christ in the manger. As France's Nobel citation said, he had a “profound human sympathy” and he often wrote about religion, though he could be caustic about organized religion. I think the most accurate review I can give is that this is really a book for “completists”—those who feel compelled to read everything they can by a particular writer. The book definitely had its highlights, but—if I am being completely honest--they were too infrequent to merit a recommendation for the book as a whole. He wrote too many far better, more worthwhile books to spend your energies on this one. (If you’re curious, the entire volume (translated into English) is available at Project Gutenberg here.)… (more)
Gypsy_Boy | 1 other review | Aug 24, 2023 |
I like Anatole France; I think his gentle satire and immense learning are a wonderful vehicle for his pleasing prose. But sooner or later I suppose it is inevitable that even in a well-loved author, one will find a book that doesn’t measure up. Sadly—since I was eagerly anticipating this famous work—this was it. The tale is simple: nearsighted monk baptizes the penguins and God, after a curious theological debate, decides to turn the penguins into humans. The rest of the book follows the rise and fall of this “human” civilization and thus gives France the chance to skewer the "high points" of Western civilization. From time to time, flashes of brilliance. Far more often, just disappointing. Tedious even. The successful moments, the perfect set pieces, are simply too infrequent. Not recommended…but don’t let that keep you from France. You just need to choose something else.… (more)
Gypsy_Boy | 18 other reviews | Aug 24, 2023 |



You May Also Like

Associated Authors

Brian Stableford Editor/Introduction/Translator
A. Blok Translator
Charles de Trooz Introduction
J.W. Hofstra Translator
Catulle Mendès Contributor
Théo Varlet Contributor
Albert Samain Contributor
Saint-Blancard Contributor
JH Rosny aîné Contributor
Maurice Montégut Contributor
Paul Adam Contributor
Camille Mauclair Contributor
Maurice Magre Contributor
Maurice Leblanc Contributor
Jules Laforgue Contributor
Henri de Régnier Contributor
Remy de Gourmont Contributor
Léon Cladel Contributor
Frédéric Boutet Contributor
Frank C. Pape Illustrator
André Maurois Introduction
Alfred Allinson Translator
Wilfrid Jackson Translator
Emilie Jackson Translator
Frank C. Papé Illustrator
A.W. Evans Translator
Malcolm Cameron Illustrator
Jean Oberle Illustrator
Jean Oberlé Illustrator
Abraham Moresco Translator
Alexandra Auer Translator
Hans Mayer Afterword
Rudolf Leonhard Translator
Desmond MacCarthy Introduction
Pierre Watrin Illustrator
Martin van Maële Illustrator
Lafcadio Hearn Translator
James Branch Cabell Introduction
Wilfred Jackson Translator
Nathan Machtey Illustrator
Donia Nachshen Illustrator
Charles E. Roche Translator
J. Lewis May Translator
Roel Knobbe Cover designer
Frederic Chapman Translator
B. Drillien Translator


Also by

Charts & Graphs