Jules Verne Biography & Facts
Jules Gabriel Verne (; French: [ʒyl gabʁijɛl vɛʁn]; 8 February 1828 – 24 March 1905) was a French novelist, poet, and playwright. His collaboration with the publisher Pierre-Jules Hetzel led to the creation of the Voyages extraordinaires, a series of bestselling adventure novels including Journey to the Center of the Earth (1864), Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Seas (1870), and Around the World in Eighty Days (1872). His novels, always very well documented, are generally set in the second half of the 19th century, taking into account the technological advances of the time.
In addition to his novels, he wrote numerous plays, short stories, autobiographical accounts, poetry, songs and scientific, artistic and literary studies. His work has been adapted for film and television since the beginning of cinema, as well as for comic books, theater, opera, music and video games.
Verne is considered to be an important author in France and most of Europe, where he has had a wide influence on the literary avant-garde and on surrealism. His reputation was markedly different in the Anglosphere where he had often been labeled a writer of genre fiction or children's books, largely because of the highly abridged and altered translations in which his novels have often been printed. Since the 1980s, his literary reputation has improved.Jules Verne has been the second most-translated author in the world since 1979, ranking between Agatha Christie and William Shakespeare. He has sometimes been called the "Father of Science Fiction", a title that has also been given to H. G. Wells and Hugo Gernsback. In the 2010's, he is the most translated French author in the world. In France, 2005 was declared "Jules Verne Year" on the occasion of the centenary of the writer's death.
Verne was born on 8 February 1828, on Île Feydeau, a small artificial island on the Loire River within the town of Nantes, in No. 4 Rue Olivier-de-Clisson, the house of his maternal grandmother Dame Sophie Marie Adélaïde Julienne Allotte de La Fuÿe (born Guillochet de La Perrière). His parents were Pierre Verne, an attorney originally from Provins, and Sophie Allotte de La Fuÿe, a Nantes woman from a local family of navigators and shipowners, of distant Scottish descent. In 1829, the Verne family moved some hundred metres away to No. 2 Quai Jean-Bart, where Verne's brother Paul was born the same year. Three sisters, Anne "Anna" (1836), Mathilde (1839), and Marie (1842) would follow.In 1834, at the age of six, Verne was sent to boarding school at 5 Place du Bouffay in Nantes. The teacher, Madame Sambin, was the widow of a naval captain who had disappeared some 30 years before. Madame Sambin often told the students that her husband was a shipwrecked castaway and that he would eventually return like Robinson Crusoe from his desert island paradise. The theme of the robinsonade would stay with Verne throughout his life and appear in many of his novels, including The Mysterious Island (1874), Second Fatherland (1900), and The School for Robinsons (1882).
In 1836, Verne went on to École Saint‑Stanislas, a Catholic school suiting the pious religious tastes of his father. Verne quickly distinguished himself in mémoire (recitation from memory), geography, Greek, Latin, and singing. In the same year, 1836, Pierre Verne bought a vacation house at 29 Rue des Réformés in the village of Chantenay (now part of Nantes) on the Loire River. In his brief memoir Souvenirs d'enfance et de jeunesse (Memories of Childhood and Youth, 1890), Verne recalled a deep fascination with the river and with the many merchant vessels navigating it. He also took vacations at Brains, in the house of his uncle Prudent Allotte, a retired shipowner, who had gone around the world and served as mayor of Brains from 1828 to 1837. Verne took joy in playing interminable rounds of the Game of the Goose with his uncle, and both the game and his uncle's name would be memorialized in two late novels (The Will of an Eccentric (1900) and Robur the Conqueror (1886), respectively).Legend has it that in 1839, at the age of 11, Verne secretly procured a spot as cabin boy on the three-mast ship Coralie with the intention of traveling to the Indies and bringing back a coral necklace for his cousin Caroline. The evening the ship set out for the Indies, it stopped first at Paimboeuf where Pierre Verne arrived just in time to catch his son and make him promise to travel "only in his imagination". It is now known that the legend is an exaggerated tale invented by Verne's first biographer, his niece Marguerite Allotte de la Füye, though it may have been inspired by a real incident.
In 1840, the Vernes moved again to a large apartment at No. 6 Rue Jean-Jacques-Rousseau, where the family's youngest child, Marie, was born in 1842. In the same year Verne entered another religious school, the Petit Séminaire de Saint-Donatien, as a lay student. His unfinished novel Un prêtre en 1839 (A Priest in 1839), written in his teens and the earliest of his prose works to survive, describes the seminary in disparaging terms. From 1844 to 1846, Verne and his brother were enrolled in the Lycée Royal (now the Lycée Georges-Clemenceau) in Nantes. After finishing classes in rhetoric and philosophy, he took the baccalauréat at Rennes and received the grade "Good Enough" on 29 July 1846.By 1847, when Verne was 19, he had taken seriously to writing long works in the style of Victor Hugo, beginning Un prêtre en 1839 and seeing two verse tragedies, Alexandre VI and La Conspiration des poudres (The Gunpowder Plot), to completion. However, his father took it for granted that Verne, being the firstborn son of the family, would not attempt to make money in literature but would instead inherit the family law practice.In 1847, Verne's father sent him to Paris, primarily to begin his studies in law school, and secondarily (according to family legend) to distance him temporarily from Nantes. His cousin Caroline, with whom he was in love, was married on 27 April 1847, to Émile Dezaunay, a man of 40, with whom she would have five children.After a short stay in Paris, where he passed first-year law exams, Verne returned to Nantes for his father's help in preparing for the second year. (Provincial law students were in that era required to go to Paris to take exams.) While in Nantes, he met Rose Herminie Arnaud Grossetière, a young woman one year his senior, and fell intensely in love with her. He wrote and dedicated some thirty poems to her, including La Fille de l'air (The Daughter of Air), which describes her as "blonde and enchanting / winged and transparent". His passion seems to have been reciprocated, at least for a short time, but Grossetière's parents frowned upon the idea of their daughter marrying a young student of uncertain future. They married her instead to Armand Terrien de la Haye, a rich landowner ten years her senior, on 19 July 1848.The sudden mar.... Discover the Jules Verne popular books. Find the top 100 most popular Jules Verne books.