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Sade, Donatien Alphonse Francois, Count

SADE, DONATIEN ALPHONSE FRANCOIS, COUNT [usually called the MARQUIS DE SADE] (1740-1814), French licentious writer, was born in Paris on the 2nd of June 1740. He entered the light-horse at fourteen and saw considerable military service before returning to Paris in 1766. Here his vicious practices became notorious, and in 1772 he was condemned to death at Aix for an unnatural offence, and for poisoning. He fled to Italy, but in 1777 he was arrested in Paris, removed to Aix for trial, and there found guilty. In 1778 he escaped from prison, but was soon re-arrested and finally committed to the Bastille. Here he began to write plays and obscene novels. In 1789 he was removed to the Charenton Lunatic Asylum, but was discharged in 1790, only to be recommitted as incurable in 1803. He died there on the 2nd of December 1814. Among his works, all of the type indicated, were Justine (1791), Juliette (1792), Philosophic dans le boudoir (1793) and Les Crimes de I' amour (1800). The word Sadism, meaning a form of sexual perversion, is derived from his name.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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