Born at Carla-le-Comte (now Carla-Bayle) in southern France, Pierre Bayle was the son of a French Protestant minister. Because of the persecution of the Huguenots in France, Bayle was forced to flee to Holland in 1681 where he lived the rest of his life. Bayle wrote a large number of works attacking all kinds of theological and philosophical theories and opposing all kinds of intolerance; he also edited one of the first major philosophical journals. Bayle's most widely known work is his immense four-folio Historical and Critical Dictionary (1697-1702), in which he developed a complete skepticism about everything that is said and everything that is done. Considered the Arsenal of the Enlightenment, the work greatly influenced Berkeley, Hume, and Voltaire.
Robert C. Bartlett is the Behrakis Professor in Hellenic Political Studies at Boston College.