Education: The Mirror

To one of his pupils in his Paris school, Pierre Larousse was a "small, dumpy man, his beard unkempt, his eyes sparkling—an introverted, sinister plodder strongly suspected of subversive ideas." But subversive or not, Pierre Larousse had one idea for which France has long been grateful. "I want," he announced in 1863, "to teach everyone everything."

Last week, 78 years after his death, old Pierre was still teaching. The great publishing house he founded had just put out a supplement to its six-volume Larousse du XXe Siècle, and by doing so, it had brought up to date France's foremost dictionary-encyclopedia. Today the...

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