Books

French author Jean d'Ormesson dies, aged 92

The French novelist and member of the Academie Francaise has died at the age of 92. A very public figure in France, d'Ormesson was the author of some 40 works.

Jean D'Ormesson (Imago/ZumaPress/Aurimage/U. Andersen)

Novelist and philosopher Jean d'Ormesson died of cardiac arrest at the age of 92 in the night from Monday to Tuesday, said his daughter, publisher Heloise d'Ormesson.

Born in Paris in 1925, d'Ormesson published his first novel, "l'Amour est un plaisir" (Love is a Pleasure), in 1956.

Following the success of his 1971 historical novel, "La Gloire de l'Empire" (The Glory of the Empire), D'Ormesson was inducted into the prestigious Academie Francaise in 1973. He was also the director of the Figaro newspaper from 1974 to 1977.

The 40 members of the academy, known as the "Immortals," are seen as intellectual and literary giants in France.

Read more: 8 French heavyweight authors to check out at the Frankfurt Book Fair

Although most members of the academy prefer to stay discreet, "Jean d'O" — as he was nicknamed — was a very public figure in the country. Renowned for his charm and wit, he regularly appeared on French TV.

French President Emmanuel Macron paid tribute to the famous author, describing him "as the best of French spirit, a unique mix of intelligence, elegance and mischievousness, a prince of letters who knew not to take himself too seriously."

eg/als (AFP, AP, dpa)

 

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