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The Best French Authors

Updated September 9, 2020 5.6k votes 827 voters 15.4k views

List RulesTop French writers of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and plays

A list of the best French authors that have provided works of nonfiction, poetry, and fiction that have become classics. Authors such as Victor Hugo, Albert Camus, and Alexandre Dumas may be familiar names of French authors that are added to the list, along with others that may not be as best-selling. This list of French writers includes playwrights and philosophers 

This list will answer the question, "who are the best French authors?" Whether someone is looking for classic writers, more contemporary writers, poets or a new author to add to their reading list, this is a perfect place to start.

The list is changed based on the ranking from voters, and since it does not include all French authors ever, you can add any that are missing.
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  • 51
    11
    2

    Pierre Corneille

    Corneille – Brecht, Le Cid
  • 52
    12
    3

    Alfred de Musset

    The Student of Prague, Lorenzaccio
  • 53
    18
    11

    Alphonse Daudet

    The Leopard, Las Aventuras de Jack
  • 54
    20
    14

    Renaud Camus

    L' élégie de Chamalières, Aguets
  • 55
    20
    15

    Frédéric Mistral

    Mirèio, Coupo Santo
  • 56
    8
    0

    Madame de La Fayette

    The Princess of Cleves, Henrietta
  • 57
    11
    3

    Pierre de Ronsard

    Les Deux Poaetes Francais, Les Amours
  • 58
    19
    15

    Jean Raspail

    The Camp of the Saints, L' anneau du pécheur
  • 59
    16
    10

    Henri Bergson

    Creative Evolution, The Two Sources of Morality and Religion
  • 60
    5
    0

    Marie de France

    Legend of the Purgatory of St. Patrick, Medieval Fables
  • 61
    5
    0

    Pierre Klossowski

    The Baphomet, The Hypothesis of the Stolen Painting
  • 62
    11
    4

    Roger Nimier

    Elevator to the Gallows, I Vinti
  • 63
    5
    0

    Raymond Queneau

    Exercises in Style, Death in the Garden
  • 64
    8
    1

    Jean Genet

    The Maids, Our Lady of the Flowers
  • 65
    8
    1

    Stéphane Mallarmé

    Coup de dés, Crises de vers
  • 66
    10
    3

    Frédéric Bastiat

    The Law, Fallacies of protection
  • 67
    5
    0

    René Crevel

    Der schwierige Tod, Babylone
  • 68
    5
    0

    Rutebeuf

  • 69
    11
    5

    Alexis de Tocqueville

    Democracy in America, The Old Regime and the Revolution
  • 70
    5
    0

    Théophile Gautier

    Les plus belles lettres de Théophile Gautier, Clarimonde
  • 71
    7
    0

    Tristan Corbière

    Les amours jaunes
  • 72
    5
    0

    Tristan Tzara

    Chanson Dada, L'antitête
  • 73
    8
    1

    Michel de Montaigne

    Essays, The essayes of Michael Lord of Montaigne
  • 74
    5
    0

    Christophe Tarkos

    Processe, L'argent
  • 75
    4
    0

    Christine de Pizan

    La Cité des dames, The book of the City of ladies