Erlanger, Philippe

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ERLANGER, PHILIPPE (1903–1987), French writer and art critic, son of Camille *Erlanger and related on his mother's side to the Comte de *Camondo. Born in Paris, Erlanger wished to become a diplomat but worked principally at the Ministry of Education, where for 40 years he headed the cultural-exchange office. In this position he organized hundreds of exhibitions and was one of the founders of the Cannes film festival. Erlanger was also a prolific journalist and art critic (Les Peintres de la réalité, 1946; Les Gisants, 1947) and wrote more than 30 books. He began as a novelist, but from the 1930s his main work was biographical, falling midway between scientific historical research and literary psychological studies. Among his subjects have been the French kings Charles vii (1945), Henri iii (1933), Louis xiii (1946), Louis xiv (1961, 1965), and their entourage: Diane de Poitiers, Henri ii's favorite (1955), the two antagonistic advisers of Louis xiii, Cinq-Mars (1962) and Richelieu (3 vols., 1967–1970), Gaston d'Orléans, Louis xiv's brother (1953), and the "Régent" Philippe d'Orléans (1938), as well as Marguerite d'Anjou, queen of England (1932), the Duke of Buckingham (1951), and the Borgia family (1934). The only contemporary subject of his biographies was Georges Clemenceau (1968). Erlanger received many prizes and honors.


Biblio, 24 (June/July 1966), 6.