Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Happy Birthday, Michel Eyquem de Montaigne!



If at first you don't succeed...


Today is the birthday of Montaigne, the great essayist. Most certainly even considered THE greatest by his French compatriots (stick an "e" between the "t" and "s" and it's already French, people!). In fact, in his official portrait, former French president Mitterand holds an open copy of the Essays in his hands.


Montaigne is considered to be the inventor of the personal essay.
He published a book titled Essais in 1580. He was the first person to call short pieces of prose "essays" from the French word for... oui, attempt!

...try, try and try again.

Yes, the mantra for anyone attempting to learn anything when things don't go right, right away, will now remind me of Montaigne. This, in turn, offers me a course of action by association: If I can't get it right and I'm tired of trying- I'll just write about it!


essayer = to try

un essai = an attempt


Photo: Try our delicious sandwiches

au Nouveau-Mexique, en septembre 2001

2 comments:

stephi said...

Nan, pas le essai, mais l'essai ;)

Il est vraiment interéssant ton blog ptit foufou, j'aime beaucoup!

le petit foufou said...

bonjour stephi!

Merci- I stand happily corrected.
I've changed it to un essai so it's easier for me to remember that it's "male". :-)