Theophile Gautier

(1811-1872 / France)

Theophile Gautier
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Pierre Jules Théophile Gautier (August 30, 1811 – October 23, 1872) was a French poet, dramatist, novelist, journalist, and literary critic.

While Gautier was an ardent defender of Romanticism, his work is difficult to classify and remains a point of reference for many subsequent literary traditions such as Parnassianism, Symbolism, Decadence and Modernism. He was widely esteemed by writers as diverse as Balzac, Baudelaire, the Goncourt brothers, Flaubert and Oscar Wilde.

Towards the end of 1830, Gautier began to frequent meetings of Le Petit Cénacle, a group of artists who met in the studio of Jehan Du Seigneur. The group was a more irresponsible version of Hugo's ... more »

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Quotations

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  • ''Any man who does not have his inner world to translate is not an artist.''
    Théophile Gautier (1811-1872), French poet, novelist, critic.
  • ''Art is beauty, the perpetual invention of detail, the choice of words, the exquisite care of execution.''
    Théophile Gautier (1811-1872), French poet, novelist, critic. La Revue des Deux Mondes (April 1, 1841).
  • ''The word poet literally means maker: anything which is not well made doesn't exist.''
    Théophile Gautier (1811-1872), French poet, novelist, critic. La Revue des Deux Mondes (April 1, 1841).
  • ''I am one of those for whom superfluity is a necessity.''
    Théophile Gautier (1811-1872), French poet, novelist, critic. Trans. by in 1943. Mademoiselle de Maupin, preface (1834).
  • ''Critical lice are like body lice, which desert corpses to seek the living.''
    Théophile Gautier (1811-1872), French poet, novelist, critic. Trans. by in 1943. Mademoiselle de Maupin, preface (1834).
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