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Thursday, November 8, 2007

Who was the French Forest Ranger famous for his fables?

His name was Jean de la Fontaine. His father was the ranger of the forest of the duchy of Chateau-Thierry in champagne, Jean was born there July 8, 1621, and educated at first for the Church. He turned, however to the law but abandoned this on succeeding to his father’s ranger ship in 1647.

He married the same year but soon separated from his wife and he must have de3cided that forest ranging was not for him for its is known that form 1660 he lived in Paris. He began to write verses and translated some the minor classics.

In 1668 his first six books of animal fables were published. In wonderfully easy verse, they rate high among the glories of French Literature. In them Fontaine demonstrated a deep knowledge of nature, gained probably from the days when he roamed the forest Chateau-Thierry as a ranger.

A second series of fables appeared in 1679 and a third in 1693. They are today still read extensively throughout the world.

Jean de la Fontaine died in Paris April13, 1695.

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