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This collection, assembled to mark the 250th anniversary of the birth of Paul Thiry, Baron d‘ Holbach, includes important materialist and anti-clerical works written in France between 1760 and 1789. Holbach was a major contributor to Diderot‘s Encyclopédie, both of signed scientific articles and of much bolder anonymous articles which presaged the atheistic and materialistic writings to come. These latter works had to be published anonymously; they were generally printed in Amsterdam – often under a false imprint – and smuggled back into France where they were secretly circulated. They are very rare today and modern editions are virtually nonexistent.
Authors who works are represented include Freret, Toland, Mirabaud, Boulanger, Borde and Helvetius.
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