Académie Française


Académie Française

Literary academy in France. The Académie Française was established by Cardinal Richelieu in 1634 to maintain standards of literary taste and to establish the literary language. In modern times it has endeavoured (somewhat absurdly) to purify French of foreign loanwords. Its membership is limited to 40. Despite its conservatism, most of France's great writers, including Pierre Corneille, Jean Racine, Voltaire, and Victor Hugo, have been members.

This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
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