, one of those writers who contributed to the general desolation of
, one of those writers who contributed to the general desolation of government, religion, and morals, which was afterwards completed by the French encyclopedists, was born June 24, 1704, at Aix in Provence, where his father was procurator-general to the parliament of that city. His father intended him for the magistracy, but he embraced the profession of arms in his fifteenth year, and appears to have led a wandering and profligate life, until, on his return from Constantinople, he was induced by his father to study law, He entered, however, again into the army in 1733, and was at the siege of Kell, where he was slightly wounded, in 1734. After the siege of Philipsbourg, he met with an accident by a fall from his horse, which disabled him for the military service. Being disinherited by his father, he went to Holland, and maintained himself by his pen, and when Frederick, king of Prussia, came to the throne, he made d'Argens his chamberlain. After passing twenty-five years in Berlin, where he married, he returned to his native country, Aix, where, in the late French cant, he lived a philosophic life, and died at the castle of the baroness de Garde, his sister, near Toulon, Jan. 11, 1771. It is said that in his last illness, he requested the sacrament might be administered to him; read often in the Gospel, and procured admission into a fraternity of penitents. His conversation has been praised for the candour and goodnature of his manner, as well as for its wit and pleasantry. He had a tendency towards melancholy, but was a good husband, friend and master. With respect to his writings, he confesses that he travelled into other countries where he might take liberties which would not be permitted at home. He professed that Bayle was his model, but he is far behind that author in genius and learning. He had, however, a thirst for knowledge, and besides his acquaintance with several languages, he studied chemistry and anatomy, and had some talent for painting.