VI
HISTORICAL METHOD

Sources and critical method

IN the Catalogue des écrivains which accompanies the Siècle de Louis XIV, Voltaire remarks of the historian Dupleix:

Il est le premier historien qui ait cité en marge ses autorités; précaution absolument nécessaire quand on n'écrit pas l'histoire de son temps, à moins qu'on ne s'en tienne aux faits connus.1

But this absolutely necessary precaution is one which Voltaire himself never takes. Sometimes he offers excuses, asserting, for example, that the events of the early years of the reign of Louis XIV are too well known to need the citation of authorities, and that he himself has 'witnessed' the closing years. At other times, as in the preface to the Histoire de Russie, he can affirm that 'on cite toujours ses garants',2 though he actually does nothing of the sort. The Essai, too, is devoid of all but the vaguest citation of sources, though here more than anywhere, according to his own principles, they are necessary.

However, when such information as the historical works do give is added to that to be found in the correspondence, in the Dictionnaire Philosophique, in controversial writings like the Supplément au Siècle de Louis XIV, and in the statements of contemporaries, a fairly accurate picture of Voltaire's sources can be obtained. In the case of the Siècle, this task has been largely accomplished by Émile Bourgeois in his edition, though his conclusions may be supplemented by the far more detailed examination to which Lanson has subjected the final chapters of the work.3 In the case of the Essai an introductory investigation on the same lines has been carried out by Hagmann.4

From this point of view Voltaire's works may be divided into

____________________
1
xiv. 69.
2
xvi. 381.
3
Lanson, "'Notes pour servir à l'étude des chapitres 35-39 du Siècle de Louis XIV de Voltaire'". See also the recent study by Quignard, 'Un Établissement de texte: Le Siècle de Louis XIV de Voltaire'.
4
Hagmann, Über Voltaire's 'Essai sur les mœurs'.

-129-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Voltaire: Historian
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Preface v
  • Contents ix
  • Abbreviations x
  • Introduction 1
  • I - Apprenticeship 5
  • II - Voltaire and His Predecessors 26
  • III - Social History 46
  • IV - Universal History 76
  • V - The Philosophy of History 95
  • VI - Historical Method 129
  • Conclusion 165
  • Bibliography 170
  • General Index 175
  • Index of References to Voltaire's Works 177
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
/ 178

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.