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Prosper Mérimée

Prosper Mérimée (September 28, 1803 - September 23, 1870) was a French dramatist, historian, archaeologist, and short story writer. One of his stories was the basis of the opera Carmen.

Prosper Mérimée was born in Paris, France. He studied law as well as Greek, Spanish, English, and Russian. He was the first interpreter of much Russian literature in France.

Mérimée loved mysticism, history, and the unusual, and was influenced by the historical fiction popularised by Sir Walter Scott and the cruelty and psychological drama of Aleksandr Pushkin. Many of his stories are mysteries set in foreign places, Spain and Russia being popular sources of inspiration.

Mérimée met and befriended the Countess of Montijo in Spain in 1830. When her daughter became the Empress Eugenie of France in 1853 he was made a senator.

Prosper Mérimée died in Cannes, France.


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