Hilaire Belloc

Hilaire Belloc (July 27, 1870 - July 16, 1953) was one of the most prolific writers in England during the early twentieth century. He was born in La Celle-Saint-Cloud / France (next to Versailles and near Paris) to a French father and English mother and grew up in England.

An 1895 graduate of Balliol College, Oxford, Belloc went into politics after he became a naturalised Britich citizen. He was a Liberal Party Member of Parliament from 1906 to 1910, but swiftly became disillusioned with party politics. He then wrote on myriad subjects, from warfare to poetry and many topics current in his day. He was closely associated with G. K. Chesterton; George Bernard Shaw coined the term Chesterbelloc for their partnership.

A strong personality with a forceful writing style, his best known works include The Servile State (1912), Europe and Faith (1920), and biographies of Oliver Cromwell, James II, and Napoleon. He was an ardent proponent of orthodox Catholicism and a critic of many elements of the modern world. In The Servile State, Belloc criticized the modern economic order, advocating a theory known as distributism in opposition to both capitalism and socialism.

He wrote one of the alternative history stories/essays for the 1932 collection If It Had Happened Otherwise edited by Sir John Squire.

Belloc is nowadays best remembered for his "cautionary tales", humorous poems with a moral, such as Matilda, who told lies and was burnt to death. Matilda's tale was adapted into the play "Matilda Liar!" by Debbie Isitt.

He was the brother of Marie Adelaide Belloc Lowndes. Recent biographies have been written by A. N. Wilson and Joseph Pearce. He was notoriously and vocally anti-Semitic.

One of his most famous statements was "Europe is the faith and the faith is Europe".

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