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Anne-Louis_Girodet-Trioson_006.jpg
François-René de Chateaubriand, painting by Anne-Louis Girodet de Roussy-Trioson, beginning of 19th century.

François-René, vicomte de Chateaubriand (September 4, 1768July 4, 1848) was a French writer and diplomat considered the founder of Romanticism in French literature.

He was born in Saint-Malo and grew up in his family's castle in Combourg, Brittany. In 1791, he visited North America, which provides the setting for his exotic novels Les Natchez (written in 1800 but published only in 1826), Atala (1801) and René (1802). His vivid, captivating descriptions of nature in the sparsely settled American Deep South seem authentic.

Chateaubriand's forced exile during the Reign of Terror inspired his first work, Essai sur les Révolutions (1797).

In 1802, he acquired fame with Le Génie du christianisme (The Genius of the Christian religion), an apology for the Christian faith which contributed to the post-revolutionary religious revival in France.

Appointed secretary of the legation to Rome by Napoleon and then minister to Valais, Switzerland, he resigned after the execution of the duc d'Enghien in 1806. He was elected to the Académie française in 1811.

After the fall of the Empire, Chateaubriand rallied the Bourbons, but his liberal views soon made him a lot of enemies. Under Louis XVIII, he became peer (1815), served as ambassador to Berlin (1821) and London (1822), and even rose to the office of Minister of Foreign Affairs (December 28, 1822 - August 4, 1824). Charles X appointed him ambassador to Rome in 1828, but he resigned upon the accession of Polignac as Premier.

In 1830, his refusal to swear allegiance to Louis Philippe put an end to his political career. He withdrew from political life to write his Mémoires d'outre-tombe (Memoirs from beyond the grave, published posthumously 1848-1850), which is considered as his most accomplished work.

He died in Paris during the Revolution of 1848 and was buried at Saint-Malo.

According to the Merriam-Webster Online dictionary, the chateaubriand steak was named after Chateaubriand.

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Preceded by:
Marie-Joseph Chénier
Seat 18
Académie française
Succeeded by:
Paul de Noailles
cs:François René de Chateaubriand

de:François-René de Chateaubriand es:François-René de Chateaubriand fr:François-René de Chateaubriand ko:프랑수와 샤토브리앙

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