Voltaire is the pen name for Francois-Marie Arouet who was born in France in 1694. Voltaire was an Enlightenment thinker who was a strong supporter of freedom of thought and expression and spoke out for the right of free speech. He is credited with the quote “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.” He was concerned with religious freedom and was critical of the Catholic Church because he felt it discouraged freedom of thought. He believed in an “enlightened monarch”, that is, a monarch who studied the science of government, was advised by philosophers such as himself, and protected the basic rights of people.
If you go to the website www.regentsprep.org , click on Global History, then click on Golden Ages. On the left side of that page click on Enlightenment. You will find a little bit of information about Voltaire.