Baron d’Holbach

Paul-Henri Thiry d'Holbach

1723 (Edesheim, Germany) – 1789 (Paris)

Diderot, d’Alembert, Rousseau, Condorcet, Grimm, Boulanger, Buffon, Beccaria and Lagrange all regularly attended d’Holbach’s intellectual salon. Gibbon, Hume, Garrick, Sterne, Walpole, Smith, Priestley and Franklin were among his anglophone friends and associates. D’Holbach maintained this intellectual and reformist côterie of friends for 30 years, an impressive feat not only for the level and international breadth of discourse, but because he and his circle were so frequently critics of established society. He not only wrote for Diderot and d’Alembert’s Encyclopédie, but also helped fund it.