Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
Overview
 
Antoine de Saint-Exupéry (ɑ̃twan də sɛ̃tɛɡzypeˈʁi), officially Antoine Marie Jean-Baptiste Roger, comte de Saint Exupéry (29 June 1900 – 31 July 1944, Mort pour la France
Mort pour la France
Mort pour la France is a term used in the French legal system for people who died during a conflict, usually in service of the country.- Definition :...

), was a French writer, poet and pioneering aviator. He became a laureate of France's highest literary awards, and in 1939 was the winner of the U.S. National Book Award. He is best remembered for his novella The Little Prince
The Little Prince
The Little Prince , first published in 1943, is a novella and the most famous work of the French aristocrat writer, poet and pioneering aviator Antoine de Saint-Exupéry ....

(Le Petit Prince) and for his lyrical aviation writings, including Night Flight and Wind, Sand and Stars
Wind, Sand and Stars
Wind, Sand and Stars is a memoir by Antoine de Saint Exupéry published in 1939. It was translated from the French by Lewis Galantière, and published in the US in November 1945....

.

He was a successful commercial pilot before World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

, flying airmail routes in Europe, Africa and South America.
Encyclopedia
Antoine de Saint-Exupéry (ɑ̃twan də sɛ̃tɛɡzypeˈʁi), officially Antoine Marie Jean-Baptiste Roger, comte de Saint Exupéry (29 June 1900 – 31 July 1944, Mort pour la France
Mort pour la France
Mort pour la France is a term used in the French legal system for people who died during a conflict, usually in service of the country.- Definition :...

), was a French writer, poet and pioneering aviator. He became a laureate of France's highest literary awards, and in 1939 was the winner of the U.S. National Book Award. He is best remembered for his novella The Little Prince
The Little Prince
The Little Prince , first published in 1943, is a novella and the most famous work of the French aristocrat writer, poet and pioneering aviator Antoine de Saint-Exupéry ....

(Le Petit Prince) and for his lyrical aviation writings, including Night Flight and Wind, Sand and Stars
Wind, Sand and Stars
Wind, Sand and Stars is a memoir by Antoine de Saint Exupéry published in 1939. It was translated from the French by Lewis Galantière, and published in the US in November 1945....

.

He was a successful commercial pilot before World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

, flying airmail routes in Europe, Africa and South America. He joined the Armée de l'Air (French Air Force) at the outbreak of war, flying reconnaissance missions until the armistice with Germany
Armistice with France (Second Compiègne)
The Second Armistice at Compiègne was signed at 18:50 on 22 June 1940 near Compiègne, in the department of Oise, between Nazi Germany and France...

. After his demobilization he voyaged to the United States to convince its government to enter the war quickly against Germany. Following a 27 month period of writing in North America, during which he wrote three of his most important works, he joined the Free French Forces
Free French Forces
The Free French Forces were French partisans in World War II who decided to continue fighting against the forces of the Axis powers after the surrender of France and subsequent German occupation and, in the case of Vichy France, collaboration with the Germans.-Definition:In many sources, Free...

 and was assigned to his old squadron in North Africa. Far past the maximum age for such pilots, and also in declining health, he continued flying missions despite the efforts of his friends and countrymen to have him grounded. He disappeared on a reconnaissance flight over the Mediterranean and France in July 1944 and is believed to have died at that time.

Prior to the war he had achieved fame in France as one of its legendary aviators. His literary works, among them The Little Prince—translated into over 230 languages and dialects—propelled his stature posthumously allowing him to achieve national hero status in France. He also earned further widespread recognition with international translations of his other works. His 1939 memoir, Terre des Hommes, was used to create the central theme (Terre des Hommes–Man and His World) of the 1967 international exposition in Montreal, Canada, Expo 67
Expo 67
The 1967 International and Universal Exposition or Expo 67, as it was commonly known, was the general exhibition, Category One World's Fair held in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, from April 27 to October 29, 1967. It is considered to be the most successful World's Fair of the 20th century, with the...

, the most successful world's fair of the 20th century.

Early years

Saint-Exupéry was born in Lyon
Lyon
Lyon , is a city in east-central France in the Rhône-Alpes region, situated between Paris and Marseille. Lyon is located at from Paris, from Marseille, from Geneva, from Turin, and from Barcelona. The residents of the city are called Lyonnais....

 to an old family of provincial nobility, the third of five children of Marie de Fonscolombe and of comte
Comte
Comte is a title of Catalan, Occitan and French nobility. In the English language, the title is equivalent to count, a rank in several European nobilities. The corresponding rank in England is earl...

 Jean de Saint Exupéry.
His father was an executive of the Le Soleil insurance brokerage, but who died of a stroke in Lyon's La Foux train station before his son's fourth birthday. His father's death would greatly impact the entire family, changing Saint-Exupéry's status to that of an "impoverished aristocrat".

After failing his final exams at preparatory school, Saint-Exupéry entered the École des Beaux-Arts
École des Beaux-Arts
École des Beaux-Arts refers to a number of influential art schools in France. The most famous is the École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts, now located on the left bank in Paris, across the Seine from the Louvre, in the 6th arrondissement. The school has a history spanning more than 350 years,...

 to study architecture. In 1921, he began his military service with the 2e Régiment de chasseurs à cheval (2nd Regiment of Light Cavalry
Light cavalry
Light cavalry refers to lightly armed and lightly armored troops mounted on horses, as opposed to heavy cavalry, where the riders are heavily armored...

), and was sent to Strasbourg
Strasbourg
Strasbourg is the capital and principal city of the Alsace region in eastern France and is the official seat of the European Parliament. Located close to the border with Germany, it is the capital of the Bas-Rhin département. The city and the region of Alsace are historically German-speaking,...

 for training as a pilot
Aviator
An aviator is a person who flies an aircraft. The first recorded use of the term was in 1887, as a variation of 'aviation', from the Latin avis , coined in 1863 by G. de la Landelle in Aviation Ou Navigation Aérienne...

. The following year, he obtained his pilot license and was offered a transfer to the air force. Bowing to the objections of the family of his fiancée—the future novelist Louise Lévêque de Vilmorin
Louise Leveque de Vilmorin
Louise Lévêque de Vilmorin was a French novelist, poet and journalist.Born in the family château at Verrières-le-Buisson, Essonne, a suburb southwest of Paris, she was heir to a great French seed company fortune, that of Vilmorin. She was afflicted with a slight limp that became a personal trademark...

—he instead settled in Paris and took an office job. The couple ultimately broke off the engagement however, and he worked at several jobs over the next few years without success.

By 1926, Saint-Exupéry was flying again. He became one of the pioneers of international postal flight, in the days when aircraft had few instruments. Later he complained that those who flew the more advanced aircraft had become more like accountants than pilots. He worked for Aéropostale
Aéropostale (aviation)
Aéropostale was a pioneering aviation company. It was founded in 1918 in Toulouse, France, as Société des lignes Latécoère, also known as Lignes Aeriennes Latécoère or simply "The Line" .- History :Aéropostale founder Pierre-Georges Latécoère envisioned an air route connecting France to the...

 between Toulouse
Toulouse
Toulouse is a city in the Haute-Garonne department in southwestern FranceIt lies on the banks of the River Garonne, 590 km away from Paris and half-way between the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea...

 and Dakar
Dakar
Dakar is the capital city and largest city of Senegal. It is located on the Cap-Vert Peninsula on the Atlantic coast and is the westernmost city on the African mainland...

, and became the airline stopover manager for the Cape Juby
Cape Juby
Cape Juby is a cape on the coast of southern Morocco, near the border with Western Sahara, directly east of the Canary Islands.Its surrounding area, called Cape Juby strip or Tarfaya strip, while making up presently the far South of Morocco, is in a way a semi-desertic buffer zone between Morocco...

 airfield in the Spanish zone of South Morocco
Morocco
Morocco , officially the Kingdom of Morocco , is a country located in North Africa. It has a population of more than 32 million and an area of 710,850 km², and also primarily administers the disputed region of the Western Sahara...

, inside the Sahara
Sahara
The Sahara is the world's second largest desert, after Antarctica. At over , it covers most of Northern Africa, making it almost as large as Europe or the United States. The Sahara stretches from the Red Sea, including parts of the Mediterranean coasts, to the outskirts of the Atlantic Ocean...

 desert. His duties included negotiating the safe release of downed fliers taken hostage by hostile Moors
Moors
The description Moors has referred to several historic and modern populations of the Maghreb region who are predominately of Berber and Arab descent. They came to conquer and rule the Iberian Peninsula for nearly 800 years. At that time they were Muslim, although earlier the people had followed...

, a perilous task that earned him France's Légion d'honneur
Légion d'honneur
The Legion of Honour, or in full the National Order of the Legion of Honour is a French order established by Napoleon Bonaparte, First Consul of the Consulat which succeeded to the First Republic, on 19 May 1802...

.

In 1929, Saint-Exupéry was transferred to Argentina
Argentina
Argentina , officially the Argentine Republic , is the second largest country in South America by land area, after Brazil. It is constituted as a federation of 23 provinces and an autonomous city, Buenos Aires...

, where he was appointed director of the Aeroposta Argentina airline. He surveyed new air routes across South America, negotiated agreements and even occasionally flew the airmail as well as search missions looking for downed fliers. This period of his life is briefly explored in Wings of Courage
Wings of Courage
Wings of Courage is a 1995 American-French drama film directed by Jean-Jacques Annaud. The 40-minute picture was written by Annaud with Alain Godard. It was the world's first dramatic picture shot in the IMAX-format...

, an IMAX
IMAX
IMAX is a motion picture film format and a set of proprietary cinema projection standards created by the Canadian company IMAX Corporation. IMAX has the capacity to record and display images of far greater size and resolution than conventional film systems...

 film by French director Jean-Jacques Annaud
Jean-Jacques Annaud
Jean-Jacques Annaud is a French film director, film producer and screenwriter.- Biography :Annaud was born in Juvisy-sur-Orge, Essonne...

.

Writing career

Saint-Exupéry's first novella, "L'Aviateur" (the aviator), was published in a short-lived literary magazine le Navire d'argent (Naval Money). In 1929, he published his first book, Courrier sud (Southern Mail); his career as an aviator and journalist was also burgeoning, and that same year he flew the Casablanca
Casablanca
Casablanca is a city in western Morocco, located on the Atlantic Ocean. It is the capital of the Grand Casablanca region.Casablanca is Morocco's largest city as well as its chief port. It is also the biggest city in the Maghreb. The 2004 census recorded a population of 2,949,805 in the prefecture...

/Dakar
Dakar
Dakar is the capital city and largest city of Senegal. It is located on the Cap-Vert Peninsula on the Atlantic coast and is the westernmost city on the African mainland...

 route.

In 1931, Vol de nuit (Night Flight)  was published and established him as a rising star in the literary world. It was the first of his major works to gain wide-spread acclaim and became the winner of the prix Femina
Prix Femina
The Prix Femina is a French literary prize created in 1904 by 22 writers for the magazine La Vie heureuse . The prize is decided each year by an exclusively female jury, although the authors of the winning works do not have to be women...

. The novel mirrored his experiences as a mail pilot and director of the Aeroposta Argentina airline, based in Argentina
Argentina
Argentina , officially the Argentine Republic , is the second largest country in South America by land area, after Brazil. It is constituted as a federation of 23 provinces and an autonomous city, Buenos Aires...

.

That same year, at Grasse
Grasse
-See also:*Route Napoléon*Ancient Diocese of Grasse*Communes of the Alpes-Maritimes department-External links:*...

, Saint-Exupéry married Consuelo Suncin
Consuelo de Saint-Exupéry
Consuelo de Saint Exupéry was a Salvadoran-French writer and artist, and wife of the famous writer and aviator Antoine de Saint Exupéry....

 (née Suncín Sandoval), a twice-widowed Salvador
El Salvador
El Salvador or simply Salvador is the smallest and the most densely populated country in Central America. The country's capital city and largest city is San Salvador; Santa Ana and San Miguel are also important cultural and commercial centers in the country and in all of Central America...

an countess, writer and artist who possessed a bohemian spirit, but a "viper's tongue". Saint-Exupéry was thoroughly enchanted by the diminutive woman, but would leave her, and return, many times. She became both his muse, and over the long term, the source of much of his angst. It would be a stormy union, as Saint-Exupéry traveled frequently and indulged in numerous affairs, most notably with the Frenchwoman Hélène de Vogüé, also known as Nellie, and sometimes referred to as "Madame de B." De Vogüé became Saint-Exupéry's literary executrix after his death, and also wrote a Saint-Exupéry biography under the pseudonym
Pseudonym
A pseudonym is a name that a person assumes for a particular purpose and that differs from his or her original orthonym...

 Pierre Chevrier.

Desert crash

On December 30, 1935 at 02:45 a.m., after 19 hours and 44 minutes in the air, Saint-Exupéry, along with his mechanic-navigator André Prévot, crashed in the Sahara desert. They were attempting to break the speed record in a Paris-to-Saigon air race (called a raid) and win a prize of 150,000 francs. Their plane was a Caudron
Caudron
The Caudron Airplane Company was a French aircraft company founded in 1909 by brothers Gaston Caudron and René Caudron . It was one of the earliest aircraft manufacturers in France and produced planes for the military in both World War I and World War II...

 C-630 Simoun
Caudron Simoun
|-See also:* Antoine de Saint Exupéry's desert crash-External links:*...

, and the crash site is thought to have been near to the Wadi Natrun
Wadi El Natrun
Wadi El Natrun is a valley located in Beheira Governorate, Egypt, including a town with the same name. The name refers to the presence of eight different lakes in the region that produce natron salt. In Christian literature, the region is also referred to as the Nitrian Desert...

 valley, close to the Nile Delta
Nile Delta
The Nile Delta is the delta formed in Northern Egypt where the Nile River spreads out and drains into the Mediterranean Sea. It is one of the world's largest river deltas—from Alexandria in the west to Port Said in the east, it covers some 240 km of Mediterranean coastline—and is a rich...

.

Both miraculously survived the crash, only to face rapid dehydration in the intense desert heat. Their maps were primitive and ambiguous, leaving them with no idea of their location. Lost among the sand dunes, their sole supplies were grapes, two oranges, a thermos of sweet coffee, chocolate, a handful of crackers, and a small ration of wine. The pair had only one day's worth of liquid.

They both began to see mirages and experience auditory hallucinations, which were quickly followed by more vivid hallucinations. By the second and third day, they were so dehydrated that they stopped sweating altogether. Finally, on the fourth day, a Bedouin
Bedouin
The Bedouin are a part of a predominantly desert-dwelling Arab ethnic group traditionally divided into tribes or clans, known in Arabic as ..-Etymology:...

 on a camel discovered them and administered a native rehydration treatment that saved Saint-Exupéry and Prévot's lives. The near brush with death would figure prominently in his 1939 memoir, Wind, Sand and Stars
Wind, Sand and Stars
Wind, Sand and Stars is a memoir by Antoine de Saint Exupéry published in 1939. It was translated from the French by Lewis Galantière, and published in the US in November 1945....

, winner of several awards. Saint-Exupéry's classic novella The Little Prince
The Little Prince
The Little Prince , first published in 1943, is a novella and the most famous work of the French aristocrat writer, poet and pioneering aviator Antoine de Saint-Exupéry ....

, which begins with a pilot being marooned in the desert, is in part a reference to this experience.

American and Canadian sojourn and The Little Prince

Saint-Exupéry continued to write until the spring of 1943, when he left the United States with American troops bound for North Africa in World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

. During the war, he initially flew a Bloch MB.170
Bloch MB.170
|-See also:-References:*...

 with the GR II/33 reconnaissance squadron of the Armée de l'Air. After France's 1940 armistice with Germany
Armistice with France (Second Compiègne)
The Second Armistice at Compiègne was signed at 18:50 on 22 June 1940 near Compiègne, in the department of Oise, between Nazi Germany and France...

, he voyaged to North America, escaping through Portugal, with the intention of convincing the U.S. to enter the conflict and the fight against Germany. Consuelo followed him to New York several months later after a chaotic migration to the south of France, were she had lived in an artist's commune.

Between January 1941 and April 1943 the Saint-Exupérys lived in New York City's Central Park South
Central Park South
Central Park South is the portion of 59th Street that forms the southern border of Central Park in the borough of Manhattan in New York City. It runs from Columbus Circle at Eighth Avenue on the west to Grand Army Plaza at Fifth Avenue on the east...

 in a penthouse apartment, a townhouse on Beekman Place
Beekman Place (Manhattan)
Beekman Place is a small street located on the east side of Manhattan, New York City. The street runs from north to south for approximately two blocks and is situated between the eastern end of 51st and 49th streets. Beekman Place is also used to refer to the residential neighborhood that surrounds...

 in Manhattan
Manhattan
Manhattan is the oldest and the most densely populated of the five boroughs of New York City. Located primarily on the island of Manhattan at the mouth of the Hudson River, the boundaries of the borough are identical to those of New York County, an original county of the state of New York...

, as well as the The Bevin House mansion in Asharoken
Asharoken, New York
Asharoken is a village in Suffolk County, New York in the United States. The population was 625 at the 2000 census. The ZIP code is 11768.The Village of Asharoken is in the Town of Huntington and was incorporated in 1925.-Geography:...

 on Long Island, NY
Long Island
Long Island is an island located in the southeast part of the U.S. state of New York, just east of Manhattan. Stretching northeast into the Atlantic Ocean, Long Island contains four counties, two of which are boroughs of New York City , and two of which are mainly suburban...

. It was after his arrival in the United States that the author adopted the hyphen within his surname, as he was annoyed with Americans addressing him as "Mr. Exupéry". It was also during this period that he authored Pilote de guerre (Flight to Arras
Flight to Arras
Flight to Arras is a memoir by French author Antoine de Saint-Exupéry. Written in 1942, it recounts his role in the Armée de l'Air as pilot of a reconnaissance plane during the Battle of France in 1940....

)
—which earned widespread acclaim—and Lettre à un otage (Letter to a hostage), dedicated to the 40 million French living under Nazi oppression, plus numerous shorter pieces in support of France. The Saint-Exupérys also resided in Quebec City, Canada for several weeks during the late spring of 1942, during which time they met a precocious eight year old boy with blond curly hair, Thomas, the son of philosopher Charles De Koninck
Charles De Koninck
Charles De Koninck was a Belgian-Canadian Thomist philosopher and theologian. As director of the Department of Philosophy at the Université Laval in Quebec, he had decisive influence on catholic philosophy in French Canada and also influenced Catholic philosophers in English Canada and the United...

, whom the Saint-Exupéry's were residing with.

Saint-Exupéry wrote and illustrated The Little Prince
The Little Prince
The Little Prince , first published in 1943, is a novella and the most famous work of the French aristocrat writer, poet and pioneering aviator Antoine de Saint-Exupéry ....

in New York City and Asharoken in mid-to-late 1942, with the manuscript being completed in October. It would be first published months later in early 1943 in both French and English, but only in the United States. It would only appear in his native homeland posthumously, after the liberation of France.

Return to war

In April 1943, following his 27 months in North America, Saint-Exupéry departed with an American military convoy for Algiers
Algiers
' is the capital and largest city of Algeria. According to the 1998 census, the population of the city proper was 1,519,570 and that of the urban agglomeration was 2,135,630. In 2009, the population was about 3,500,000...

, to fly with the Free French Air Force
Free French Air Force
The Free French Air Force was the air arm of the Free French Forces during the Second World War.-Fighting for Free France — the FAFL in French North Africa :...

 and fight with the Allies
Western Allies
The Western Allies were a political and geographic grouping among the Allied Powers of the Second World War. It generally includes the United Kingdom and British Commonwealth, the United States, France and various other European and Latin American countries, but excludes China, the Soviet Union,...

 in a Mediterranean-based squadron. Then 43, soon to be promoted to the rank of Commandant (Major), he was far older than most men tasked to combat status. Although eight years over the age limit for such pilots, he had petitioned endlessly for an exemption which had finally been approved by General Dwight Eisenhower
Dwight D. Eisenhower
Dwight David "Ike" Eisenhower was the 34th President of the United States, from 1953 until 1961. He was a five-star general in the United States Army...

. However Saint-Exupéry had been suffering pain and immobility due to his many previous crash injuries, to the extent that he could not dress himself in his own flight suit
Flight suit
A flight suit is a full body garment, worn while flying aircraft such as military airplanes, gliders and helicopters. These suits are generally made to keep the wearer warm, as well as being practical , and durable . Its appearance is usually similar to a jumpsuit. A military flight suit may also...

 or even turn his head leftwards to check for enemy aircraft.

He was assigned with a number of other pilots to Lockheed P-38 Lightnings, which an officer described as "war-weary, non-airworthy craft". The Lightnings were also more sophisticated than models he previously flew, requiring him to undertake seven weeks of stringent training before his first mission. After wrecking a P-38 through engine failure on his second mission, he was grounded for eight months, but was then later reinstated to flight duty on the personal intervention of General Ira Eaker, Deputy Commander of the U.S. Army Air Forces.

After Saint-Exupéry resumed flying he also returned to his longtime habit of reading and writing while flying his single seat F-5B variant (a specially modified
Reconnaissance aircraft
A reconnaissance aircraft is a manned military aircraft designed, or adapted, to carry out aerial reconnaissance.-History:The majority of World War I aircraft were reconnaissance designs...

 fighter-bomber
Fighter-bomber
A fighter-bomber is a fixed-wing aircraft with an intended primary role of light tactical bombing and also incorporating certain performance characteristics of a fighter aircraft. This term, although still used, has less significance since the introduction of rockets and guided missiles into aerial...

). His prodigious studies of literature gripped him, and on occasion he continued his readings of literary works until moments before takeoff, with mechanics having warmed up and tested his mount for him in preparation for his flight. On one flight he circled the airport for an hour after returning, so that he could finish reading a novel, to the chagrin of his colleges awaiting his arrival. Saint-Exupéry frequently flew with a lined notebook (carnet) during his long solitary flights, and some of his philosophical writings were created during such periods when he could reflect on the world below him.

Disappearance

Prior to his return to flight duties with his squadron in North Africa the collaborationist Vichy Regime
Vichy France
Vichy France, Vichy Regime, or Vichy Government, are common terms used to describe the government of France that collaborated with the Axis powers from July 1940 to August 1944. This government succeeded the Third Republic and preceded the Provisional Government of the French Republic...

 unilaterally promoted Saint-Exupéry as one of its members—coming as a shock to the author himself. Subsequently, French General (later, French President) Charles de Gaulle
Charles de Gaulle
Charles André Joseph Marie de Gaulle was a French general and statesman who led the Free French Forces during World War II. He later founded the French Fifth Republic in 1958 and served as its first President from 1959 to 1969....

, whom Saint-Exupéry held in low regard, publicly implied that the author-pilot was supporting Germany. Depressed at this, he began to drink heavily. Additionally, his health, both physically and mentally, had been deteriorating. Saint-Exupéry was said to be intermittently subject to depression and there had been talk of taking him off flying status.
Saint-Exupéry's final flight was to collect intelligence on German troop movements in and around the Rhone
Rhône
Rhone can refer to:* Rhone, one of the major rivers of Europe, running through Switzerland and France* Rhône Glacier, the source of the Rhone River and one of the primary contributors to Lake Geneva in the far eastern end of the canton of Valais in Switzerland...

 Valley preceding the Allied invasion of southern France
Operation Dragoon
Operation Dragoon was the Allied invasion of southern France on August 15, 1944, during World War II. The invasion was initiated via a parachute drop by the 1st Airborne Task Force, followed by an amphibious assault by elements of the U.S. Seventh Army, followed a day later by a force made up...

 ("Operation Dragoon"). Although he had been reinstated to his old squadron with the provision that he was to fly only five missions, on 31 July 1944, he took off in an unarmed P-38 on his eighth reconnaissance mission from an airbase on Corsica
Corsica
Corsica is an island in the Mediterranean Sea. It is located west of Italy, southeast of the French mainland, and north of the island of Sardinia....

. To the great alarm of the squadron compatriots who revered him, he did not return, dramatically vanishing without a trace. Word of his disappearance shortly spread across the literary world and then into international headlines.

A French woman reported much later having watched a plane crash around noon near the Bay of Carqueiranne
Carqueiranne
Carqueiranne is a commune in the Var department in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region in southeastern France.It is known now as a tourist seaside resort with good windsurfing nearby, at Almanarre Beach, and a nudist beach at Ile du Levant....

 off Toulon
Toulon
Toulon is a town in southern France and a large military harbor on the Mediterranean coast, with a major French naval base. Located in the Provence-Alpes-Côte-d'Azur region, Toulon is the capital of the Var department in the former province of Provence....

. An unidentifiable body wearing French colors was found several days after his disappearance, east of the Frioul archipelago
Frioul archipelago
The Frioul archipelago is a group of 4 islands located off the Mediterranean coast of France, approximately at 4 km from Marseille. The islands of the archipelago cover a total land area of approximately 200 hectares....

 south of Marseille
Marseille
Marseille , known in antiquity as Massalia , is the second largest city in France, after Paris, with a population of 852,395 within its administrative limits on a land area of . The urban area of Marseille extends beyond the city limits with a population of over 1,420,000 on an area of...

, and buried in Carqueiranne in September.

Discovery at sea

In September 1998 Jean-Claude Bianco, a fisherman, found, east of Riou Island, south of Marseille, a silver identity bracelet (gourmette) bearing the names of Saint-Exupéry and of his wife Consuelo and his American publisher, Reynal & Hitchcock, hooked to a piece of fabric, presumably from his flight suit. The recovery of his bracelet was an emotionally laden event in France where Saint-Exupéry had by then assumed the mantle of a national icon, and some disputed its authenticity as it was found far from his intended flight path, implying that the aircraft may not have been shot down.

In May 2000 Luc Vanrell, a diver, found the partial remains of a P-38 Lightning spread over thousands of square metres of the seabed off the coast of Marseille, near to where the bracelet was previously found. The discovery galvanized the country, which for decades had conducted searches for his aircraft and speculated on Saint-Exupéry's fate. The remnants of the aircraft were recovered only in October 2003, due to a two year delay imposed by the French Government.

On 7 April 2004, Patrick Granjean, head of the French Ministry of Culture
Minister of Culture (France)
The Minister of Culture is, in the Government of France, the cabinet member in charge of national museums and monuments; promoting and protecting the arts in France and abroad; and managing the national archives and regional "maisons de culture"...

, Captain Frederic Solano of the French Air Force
French Air Force
The French Air Force , literally Army of the Air) is the air force of the French Armed Forces. It was formed in 1909 as the Service Aéronautique, a service arm of the French Army, then was made an independent military arm in 1933...

, plus investigators from the French Underwater Archaeological Department
Maritime archaeology
Maritime archaeology is a discipline within archaeology as a whole that specifically studies human interaction with the sea, lakes and rivers through the study of associated physical remains, be they vessels, shore side facilities, port-related structures, cargoes, human remains and submerged...

 confirmed that the remnants of the crash wreckage were, indeed, from Saint-Exupéry's P-38 F-5B reconnaissance variant. No marks or holes attributable to gunfire were found; however, that was not considered significant as only a small portion of the aircraft was recovered. In June 2004, the fragments were given to the Air and Space Museum
Musée de l'Air et de l'Espace
The French Air and Space Museum is a French museum, located in the south-eastern edge of Le Bourget Airport, north of Paris, and in the commune of Le Bourget. It was created in 1919 from a proposition of Albert Caquot .-Description:Occupying over of land and hangars, it is one of the oldest...

 in Le Bourget, Paris
Paris – Le Bourget Airport
Paris – Le Bourget Airport is an airport located in Le Bourget, Bonneuil-en-France, and Dugny, north-northeast of Paris, France. It is now used only for general aviation as well as air shows...

, where Saint-Exupéry's life is commemorated in a special exhibit.

The location of the crash site and the bracelet are less than 80 km by sea from where the unidentified French soldier was found in Carqueiranne
Carqueiranne
Carqueiranne is a commune in the Var department in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region in southeastern France.It is known now as a tourist seaside resort with good windsurfing nearby, at Almanarre Beach, and a nudist beach at Ile du Levant....

, and it remains plausible, but has not been confirmed, that the body was carried there by sea currents after the crash over the course of several days.

Speculations in 1981 and 2008

In March 2008, a former Luftwaffe
Luftwaffe
Luftwaffe is a generic German term for an air force. It is also the official name for two of the four historic German air forces, the Wehrmacht air arm founded in 1935 and disbanded in 1946; and the current Bundeswehr air arm founded in 1956....

 pilot, 85-year-old Horst Rippert (the brother of the singer Ivan Rebroff
Ivan Rebroff
Ivan Rebroff was a German singer, allegedly of Russian ancestry, with an extraordinary vocal range of four and a half octaves, ranging from the soprano to impressive bass registers....

), told La Provence, a Marseille newspaper, that he engaged and downed a P-38 Lightning on 31 July 1944 in the area where Saint-Exupéry's plane was found. Rippert, who was on a reconnaissance mission over the Mediterranean sea, said he saw and engaged a P-38 with a French emblem near Toulon
Toulon
Toulon is a town in southern France and a large military harbor on the Mediterranean coast, with a major French naval base. Located in the Provence-Alpes-Côte-d'Azur region, Toulon is the capital of the Var department in the former province of Provence....

. Rippert, who said he saw the P-38 crash into the sea, was the second Luftwaffe fighter pilot to publicly state this, after Robert Heichele reported in 1981 that he had shot down Saint-Exupéry's plane.

Two books were published by French and German researchers discussing the alleged Saint-Exupéry shootdown. Rippert's and Heichele's stories are unverifiable, possibly self-promotional, and have met with criticism from German, French and British investigators.

Contemporary archival sources, including intercepted Luftwaffe signals, strongly suggest that Saint-Exupéry was not shot down by a German aircraft, although an American Lightning flown by Second Lieutenant Gene Meredith was shot down the previous day on 30 July. By contrast, there were no claims on file from either of the Luftwaffe pilots, Heichele or Rippert, for a Lightning on 31 July 1944, nor any supporting Allied signals intelligence or radar reports for that area on that date. Rippert's explanation that he and his Luftwaffe squadron colleges immediately 'covered up' the shootdown after-the-fact due to Saint-Exupéry's stature was met with extreme skepticism, as the Allies had made no mention of the author's status for two to three days after he failed to return from his mission.

Literary works

While not precisely autobiographical, much of Saint-Exupéry's work is inspired by his experiences as a pilot. One example is his novella The Little Prince
The Little Prince
The Little Prince , first published in 1943, is a novella and the most famous work of the French aristocrat writer, poet and pioneering aviator Antoine de Saint-Exupéry ....

, a poetic tale self-illustrated in watercolours in which a pilot stranded in the desert meets a young prince fallen to Earth from a tiny asteroid
Asteroid
Asteroids are a class of small Solar System bodies in orbit around the Sun. They have also been called planetoids, especially the larger ones...

. The Little Prince is a philosophical story, including societal criticism, remarking on the strangeness of the adult world.

Saint-Exupéry's notable literary works (published English translations in brackets) are constituted by:
  • L'Aviateur (1926)
  • Courrier sud (1929) (Southern Mail)
  • Vol de nuit (1931) (Night Flight) – winner of the full prix Femina
    Prix Femina
    The Prix Femina is a French literary prize created in 1904 by 22 writers for the magazine La Vie heureuse . The prize is decided each year by an exclusively female jury, although the authors of the winning works do not have to be women...

  • Terre des hommes (1939) (English version: Wind, Sand and Stars
    Wind, Sand and Stars
    Wind, Sand and Stars is a memoir by Antoine de Saint Exupéry published in 1939. It was translated from the French by Lewis Galantière, and published in the US in November 1945....

    ) – winner of the Grand Prix du roman de l'Académie française
    Grand Prix du roman de l'Académie française
    Le Grand Prix du Roman is a French literary award, created in 1918, and given each year by the Académie française. Along with the Prix Goncourt, it is one of the oldest and most prestigious literary awards in France...

     and the U.S. National Book Award
    National Book Award
    The National Book Awards are a set of American literary awards. Started in 1950, the Awards are presented annually to American authors for literature published in the current year. In 1989 the National Book Foundation, a nonprofit organization which now oversees and manages the National Book...

    Miller, John R.; Fay, Eliot G. Antoine de Saint-Exupéry: A Bibliography, The French Review, American Association of Teachers of French
    American Association of Teachers of French
    The American Association of Teachers of French is a professional organisation for teachers of French in the United States. Teachers may be involved in primary, secondary, or university education...

    , Vol.19, No.5, March 1946, p.300 (subscription). Retrieved 20 September 2011.
    • Pilote de guerre (1942) (titled in English as: Flight to Arras
      Flight to Arras
      Flight to Arras is a memoir by French author Antoine de Saint-Exupéry. Written in 1942, it recounts his role in the Armée de l'Air as pilot of a reconnaissance plane during the Battle of France in 1940....

      ) – winner of the Grand Prix Littéraire de l'Aéro-Club de France and a best-seller for a six month period in the United States
    • Le Petit Prince (1943) (The Little Prince
      The Little Prince
      The Little Prince , first published in 1943, is a novella and the most famous work of the French aristocrat writer, poet and pioneering aviator Antoine de Saint-Exupéry ....

      )
    • Lettre à un otage (1944) (Letter to a Hostage), posthumous in English
    • Citadelle (1948) (titled in English: as The Wisdom of the Sands), posthumous – winner of the Prix des Ambassadeurs
    • Lettres à une jeune fille (1950), posthumous
    • Lettres de jeunesse 1923–1931 (1953), posthumous
    • Carnets (1953), posthumous
    • Lettres à sa mère (1955), posthumous
    • Un sens à la vie (1956), (A Sense of Life), posthumous
      • Écrits de guerre 1939–1944 (1982) (Wartime Writings 1939–1944), posthumous
      • Manon, danseuse (2007), posthumous
      • Lettres à l'inconnue (2008), posthumous

      Other writings

      Besides his journalistic writings which covered events from the Soviet Union
      Soviet Union
      The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

       and Moscow
      Moscow
      Moscow is the capital, the most populous city, and the most populous federal subject of Russia. The city is a major political, economic, cultural, scientific, religious, financial, educational, and transportation centre of Russia and the continent...

       (1935), the Spanish Civil War
      Spanish Civil War
      The Spanish Civil WarAlso known as The Crusade among Nationalists, the Fourth Carlist War among Carlists, and The Rebellion or Uprising among Republicans. was a major conflict fought in Spain from 17 July 1936 to 1 April 1939...

       (1936–1937) and the Far East
      Far East
      The Far East is an English term mostly describing East Asia and Southeast Asia, with South Asia sometimes also included for economic and cultural reasons.The term came into use in European geopolitical discourse in the 19th century,...

      , Saint-Exupéry also wrote a number of shorter pieces and commentaries for newspapers and magazines.

      Notable among those during WWII was An Open Letter To Frenchmen Everywhere, which was highly controversial in its attempt to rally support for France against Nazi oppression and published in The New York Times Magazine
      The New York Times Magazine
      The New York Times Magazine is a Sunday magazine supplement included with the Sunday edition of The New York Times. It is host to feature articles longer than those typically in the newspaper and has attracted many notable contributors...

      and Le Canada, de Montréal in November 1942. It was also published in its original French in Pour la Victoire the following month.

      Censorship and publication bans

      Pilote de guerre (Flight To Arras), describing the German invasion of France, was slightly censored when it was released in its original French in his homeland, by removing a derogatory remark made of Hitler (which French publisher Gallimard
      Éditions Gallimard
      Éditions Gallimard is one of the leading French publishers of books. The Guardian has described it as having "the best backlist in the world". In 2003 it and its subsidiaries published 1418 titles....

       failed to reinsert in subsequent editions after WWII). However shortly after it was released in France, Nazi appeasers and Vichy supporters objected to the book's praise of one of Saint-Exupéry's squadron colleagues, Captain Jean Israël, who was portrayed in the book as being amongst the squadron's bravest defenders during the Battle of France
      Battle of France
      In the Second World War, the Battle of France was the German invasion of France and the Low Countries, beginning on 10 May 1940, which ended the Phoney War. The battle consisted of two main operations. In the first, Fall Gelb , German armoured units pushed through the Ardennes, to cut off and...

      . In support of their German occupiers and masters, Vichy authorities attacked the author as a defender of Jews (in racist terms) leading to the praised book being banned in France, along with prohibitions against further printings of Saint-Exupéry's other works. Prior to France's liberation new printings of Saint-Exupéry's works were made available there only by means of covert print runs, such as that of February 1943 when 1,000 copies of an underground version of Pilote de guerre, were printed in Lyon.

      A further complication occurred due to Saint-Exupéry's (and others') view of General Charles de Gaulle
      Charles de Gaulle
      Charles André Joseph Marie de Gaulle was a French general and statesman who led the Free French Forces during World War II. He later founded the French Fifth Republic in 1958 and served as its first President from 1959 to 1969....

      , who was held in low regard. Early in the war de Gaulle became the leader of the Free French Forces
      Free French Forces
      The Free French Forces were French partisans in World War II who decided to continue fighting against the forces of the Axis powers after the surrender of France and subsequent German occupation and, in the case of Vichy France, collaboration with the Germans.-Definition:In many sources, Free...

       in exile, with his headquarters in London. Even though both men were working to free France from Nazi occupation, Saint-Exupéry viewed de Gaulle with apprehension as a possible post-war dictator, and consequently provided no public support to the general. In response, de Gaulle struck back at the author by having his literary works banned in France's North African colonies. Saint-Exupéry's writings were, with irony, banned simultaneously in both occupied France and Free France.

      Extension of copyrights in France

      Due to Saint-Exupéry's wartime death, his estate received the civil code
      Napoleonic code
      The Napoleonic Code — or Code Napoléon — is the French civil code, established under Napoléon I in 1804. The code forbade privileges based on birth, allowed freedom of religion, and specified that government jobs go to the most qualified...

       designation Mort pour la France
      Mort pour la France
      Mort pour la France is a term used in the French legal system for people who died during a conflict, usually in service of the country.- Definition :...

      (English: Died for France), which was applied by the French Government in 1948. Amongst the law's provisions is an increase of 30 years in the duration of copyright; thus most of Saint-Exupéry's creative works will not fall out of copyright status in France for an extra 30 years.

      Honours and legacy



      • Saint-Exupéry is commemorated with an inscription in the Panthéon in Paris, France's repository of historical greats. Although his body was never identified, his name was added to the Panthéon by a French legislative act. The inscription reads: "A LA MÉMOIRE DE • ANTOINE DE SAINT EXUPERY • POÈTE ROMANCIER AVIATEUR • DISPARU AU COURS D'UNE MISSION • DE RECONNAISSANCE AÉRIENNE • LE 31 JUILLET 1944" (To the memory of Antoine de Saint Exupery, poet, novelist, aviator, missing during an aerial reconnaissance mission, 31 July 1944).
      • From 1993 until the introduction of the Euro
        Euro
        The euro is the official currency of the eurozone: 17 of the 27 member states of the European Union. It is also the currency used by the Institutions of the European Union. The eurozone consists of Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg,...

        , Saint-Exupéry's portrait and several of his drawings from The Little Prince appeared on France's 50-franc banknote. The French Government also later minted a 100-franc commemorative coin, with Saint-Exupéry on the front, and the Little Prince on its obverse side. Brass plated souvenir Monnaie de Paris commemorative coins were also issued in his honour, depicting the pilot's portrait over the P-38 Lightning aircraft he last flew.
      • In 1999, the Government of Quebec
        Government of Quebec
        The Government of Quebec refers to the provincial government of the province of Quebec. Its powers and structure are set out in the Constitution Act, 1867....

         and Quebec City
        Quebec City
        Quebec , also Québec, Quebec City or Québec City is the capital of the Canadian province of Quebec and is located within the Capitale-Nationale region. It is the second most populous city in Quebec after Montreal, which is about to the southwest...

         added a historical marker to the family home of Charles De Koninck
        Charles De Koninck
        Charles De Koninck was a Belgian-Canadian Thomist philosopher and theologian. As director of the Department of Philosophy at the Université Laval in Quebec, he had decisive influence on catholic philosophy in French Canada and also influenced Catholic philosophers in English Canada and the United...

        , head of the Department of Philosophy at Université Laval
        Université Laval
        Laval University is the oldest centre of education in Canada and was the first institution in North America to offer higher education in French...

        , where the Saint-Exupéry's stayed while lecturing in Canada for several weeks during May and June 1942.
      • In 2000, in the city where he was born on the centenary of his birth, the Lyon Satolas Airport was renamed as the Lyon-Saint Exupéry Airport in his honour. Lyon's TGV
        TGV
        The TGV is France's high-speed rail service, currently operated by SNCF Voyages, the long-distance rail branch of SNCF, the French national rail operator....

         bullet train station was also renamed as Gare de Lyon Saint-Exupéry. The author is additionally commemorated by a statue in Lyon, depicting a seated Saint-Exupéry with the little prince standing behind him.
      • In 2011 the City of Toulouse, France
        Toulouse
        Toulouse is a city in the Haute-Garonne department in southwestern FranceIt lies on the banks of the River Garonne, 590 km away from Paris and half-way between the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea...

        , home of Airbus
        Airbus
        Airbus SAS is an aircraft manufacturing subsidiary of EADS, a European aerospace company. Based in Blagnac, France, surburb of Toulouse, and with significant activity across Europe, the company produces around half of the world's jet airliners....

         and the pioneering airmail carrier Aéropostale
        Aéropostale (aviation)
        Aéropostale was a pioneering aviation company. It was founded in 1918 in Toulouse, France, as Société des lignes Latécoère, also known as Lignes Aeriennes Latécoère or simply "The Line" .- History :Aéropostale founder Pierre-Georges Latécoère envisioned an air route connecting France to the...

        , in conjunction with the Estate of Saint-Exupery-d'Agay and the Youth Foundation of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, hosted a major exposition on Saint-Exupéry and his experience with Aéropostale. The exposition, titled L’année Antoine de Saint-Exupéry à Toulouse, exhibited selected personal artifacts of the author-aviator, including gloves, photos, posters, maps, manuscripts, drawings, models of the aircraft he flew, some of the wreckage from his Sahara Desert plane crash, and the personal silver identification bracelet engraved with his and Consuelo's name, presented by his U.S. publisher, which was recovered from his last, ultimate crash site in the Mediterranean Sea.

      • Museum exhibits, exhibitions and theme villages dedicated to both him and his diminutive Little Prince have been created in Le Bourget, Paris
        Le Bourget
        Le Bourget is a commune in the northeastern suburbs of Paris, France. It is located from the center of Paris.A very small part of Le Bourget airport lies on the territory of the commune of Le Bourget, which nonetheless gave its name to the airport. Most of the airport lies on the territory of the...

         and other locations in France, as well as in the Republic of South Korea, Japan, Morocco, Brazil, the United States and Canada.
        • The Air and Space Museum at Paris's Le Bourget Airport
          Paris – Le Bourget Airport
          Paris – Le Bourget Airport is an airport located in Le Bourget, Bonneuil-en-France, and Dugny, north-northeast of Paris, France. It is now used only for general aviation as well as air shows...

          , in cooperation with The Estate of Saint-Exupery-d'Agay, have created a permanent exhibit of 300 m² dedicated to the author, pilot, person and humanist. The exhibit traces each stage of his life as an airmail pioneer, eclectic intellectual/artist and military pilot. It also includes artifacts from his life: photographs, his drawings, letters, some of his original notebooks (carnets) he scribbled in voluminously, and which were later published posthumously, plus remnants of the unarmed P-38 he flew on his last reconnaissance mission and which were recovered from the Mediterranean Sea.
        • In Tarfaya, Morocco
          Tarfaya
          - References :CitationsBibliography* Didier Daurat, , France: Édition Dynamo, 1954....

          , next to the Cape Juby
          Cape Juby
          Cape Juby is a cape on the coast of southern Morocco, near the border with Western Sahara, directly east of the Canary Islands.Its surrounding area, called Cape Juby strip or Tarfaya strip, while making up presently the far South of Morocco, is in a way a semi-desertic buffer zone between Morocco...

           airfield where Saint-Exupéry was based as an Aéropostale
          Aéropostale
          Aéropostale may refer to:*Aéropostale , an apparel retailer*Aéropostale , formerly la Compagnie générale aéropostale, a defunct French airmail company...

           airmail pilot/station manager, an exhibit was created honouring both him and the company. A small monument at the airfield is also dedicated to them.
        • In January 1995 the Alberta Aviation Museum
          Alberta Aviation Museum
          The Alberta Aviation Museum is a museum in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. It is located on-site at the Edmonton City Centre Airport CYXD on the southwest corner of the field ....

           of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
          Canada
          Canada is a North American country consisting of ten provinces and three territories. Located in the northern part of the continent, it extends from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west, and northward into the Arctic Ocean...

          , in conjunction with the cultural organization Alliance française
          Alliance française
          The Alliance française , or AF, is an international organisation that aims to promote French language and culture around the world. created in Paris on 21 July 1883, its primary concern is teaching French as a second language and is headquartered in Paris -History:The Alliance was created in Paris...

          , presented a showing of Saint-Exupéry letters, watercolours, sketches and photographs.
        • In Gyeonggi-do, South Korea
          Gyeonggi-do
          Gyeonggi-do is the most populous province in South Korea. The provincial capital is located at Suwon. Seoul—South Korea's largest city and national capital—is located in the heart of the province, but has been separately administered as a provincial-level special city since 1946...

          , and Hakone, Japan, theme village museums have been created honouring Saint-Exupéry's Little Prince.
        • In San Paulo, Brazil
          Brazil
          Brazil , officially the Federative Republic of Brazil , is the largest country in South America. It is the world's fifth largest country, both by geographical area and by population with over 192 million people...

           through 2009, the Oca Art Exhibition Centre presented Saint-Exupéry and The Little Prince as part of The Year of France and The Little Prince. The displays covered over 10,000 m² on four floors, and chronicled Saint-Exupéry, The Little Prince and their philosophies, as visitors passed through theme areas of the desert, asteroids, stars and the cosmos. The ground floor of the giant exhibition was laid out as a huge map of the routes flown by the author with Aeropostale
          Aéropostale
          Aéropostale may refer to:*Aéropostale , an apparel retailer*Aéropostale , formerly la Compagnie générale aéropostale, a defunct French airmail company...

           in South America and around the world. Also included was a full scale replica of the author's crashed Caudron Simoun
          Caudron Simoun
          |-See also:* Antoine de Saint Exupéry's desert crash-External links:*...

          , lying wrecked on the ground of a simulated Libyan desert following his disastrous Paris-Saigon race attempt. The miraculous survival of Saint-Exupéry and his mechanic/navigator was subsequently chronicled in the award-winning memoir Wind, Sand and Stars
          Wind, Sand and Stars
          Wind, Sand and Stars is a memoir by Antoine de Saint Exupéry published in 1939. It was translated from the French by Lewis Galantière, and published in the US in November 1945....

          (Terre des hommes), and also formed the introduction of his most famous work The Little Prince
          The Little Prince
          The Little Prince , first published in 1943, is a novella and the most famous work of the French aristocrat writer, poet and pioneering aviator Antoine de Saint-Exupéry ....

          (Le Petit Prince).
      • His 1939 memoir Terre des Hommes was chosen to create the central theme (Terre des Hommes–Man and His World) of the 1967 International and Universal Exposition
        Expo 67
        The 1967 International and Universal Exposition or Expo 67, as it was commonly known, was the general exhibition, Category One World's Fair held in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, from April 27 to October 29, 1967. It is considered to be the most successful World's Fair of the 20th century, with the...

         in Montreal, Canada (Expo '67), the most successful world's fair of the 20th century. The central theme, which also generated the 17 subsidiary elements used for the world's fair, was elucidated at a 1963 Montebello, Quebec
        Montebello, Quebec
        Montebello is a municipality located in the Papineau Regional County Municipality of Western Quebec . As of the 2001 census, there were 1,039 permanent residents. The village has a total area of , and is located at the eastern edge of Canada's National Capital Region.The village is world famous for...

         conference held with some of Canada's leading thinkers. The Countess de Saint Exupéry (1901–1979), Saint-Exupéry's wife and widow, was a guest of honour at the opening ceremonies of the world's fair.
      • Asteroid 2578 Saint-Exupéry
        2578 Saint-Exupéry
        2578 Saint-Exupéry is a small main belt asteroid, which was discovered by Tamara M. Smirnova on November 2, 1975. It is named after Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, the French aviator and writer. The name is appropriate, as Saint-Exupéry's best-known character, The Little Prince, lives on an asteroid.In...

        , discovered in 1975 by Russian astronomer Tamara Smirnova and provisionally cataloged as Asteroid 1975 VW3, was renamed in the author-aviator's honour. Asteroid 46610 Bésixdouze
        46610 Besixdouze
        46610 Besixdouze is an asteroid belonging to the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter.It was formally pinpointed by Kin Endate and Kazuro Watanabe on October 15, 1993....

         (translated to and from both hexidecimal and French as 'B612') and the terrestrial/asteroid protection organization B612 Foundation
        B612 Foundation
        The B612 Foundation is a private foundation dedicated to protecting the Earth from asteroid strikes. Their immediate goal is to "significantly alter the orbit of an asteroid in a controlled manner by 2015"....

         was partially named in tribute to the author's Little Prince, who fell to Earth from Asteroid B-612.
      • The Aguja Saint Exupery
        Aguja Saint Exupery
        The Aguja Saint Exupery is a mountain spear located near the Cerro Chaltén in the Los Glaciares National Park in Patagonia, Argentina....

         is a mountain peak located near the Cerro Chaltén
        Cerro Chaltén
        Monte Fitz Roy is a mountain located near El Chaltén village, in the Southern Patagonian Ice Field in Patagonia, on the border between Argentina and Chile...

         (also known as Monte Fitz Roy) in the Los Glaciares National Park
        Los Glaciares National Park
        Parque Nacional Los Glaciares is a national park in the Santa Cruz Province, in Argentine Patagonia. It comprises an area of 4459 km². In 1981 it was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO....

         in Patagonia, Argentina, where he flew as an airmail pilot with Aeroposta Argentina. The mountain peak is named in Saint-Exupéry's honour.
      • The GR I/33 (later renamed as the 1/33 Belfort Squadron), one of the French Air Force squadrons Saint-Exupéry flew with, adopted the image of the Little Prince as part of the squadron and tail insignia on its Dassault Mirage fighter jets.
      • In commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the writer's death, Israel
        Israel
        The State of Israel is a parliamentary republic located in the Middle East, along the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea...

         issued a stamp honoring "Saint-Ex" and The Little Prince in 1994. Philatelic
        Philately
        Philately is the study of stamps and postal history and other related items. Philately involves more than just stamp collecting, which does not necessarily involve the study of stamps. It is possible to be a philatelist without owning any stamps...

         tributes have been printed in at least 24 other countries as of 2011.
      • Numerous streets and schools are named after the author-aviator throughout France and other countries.

      Theatre

      In August 2011, the world premiere of Saint-Ex, a theatrical production of Saint-Exupéry's life, was launched at the Weston Playhouse in Weston, Vermont
      Weston, Vermont
      Weston is a town in Windsor County, Vermont, United States. The population was 630 at the 2000 census. Home to the Weston Playhouse Theatre Company, it includes the villages of Weston and the Island.-History:...

      . The live theatre musical explores in drama and song the aviator-author's early life, the aerial band-of-brothers he flew with at Aéropostale
      Aéropostale
      Aéropostale may refer to:*Aéropostale , an apparel retailer*Aéropostale , formerly la Compagnie générale aéropostale, a defunct French airmail company...

      , and the raucous relations between him and his fiery Latin writer-artist wife, born Consuelo Suncín Sandoval Zeceña.

      The production was written by the husband and wife team of lyricist Sean Barry and composer Jenny Giering, and staged with the assistance of director Matt Castle and set designer Tim Mackabee, plus choreography by Jennifer Turey. The leading cast members include Alexander Gemignani
      Alexander Gemignani
      Alexander Cesare Gemignani is a Broadway actor and tenor. Gemignani was raised in Tenafly, New Jersey and is a graduate of the University of Michigan's Musical Theater Department...

       (playing Saint-Exupéry), Krysta Rodriguez
      Krysta Rodriguez
      Krysta Rodriguez is an American actress and singer. She grew up in Orange County, California and attended the Orange County High School of the Arts.- Career :...

       (playing his tempestuous wife Consuelo), Cass Morgan (Saint-Exupéry's mother, author Countess Marie de Fonscolombe), plus Charlie Brady (Aéropostale pilot and Air France
      Air France
      Air France , stylised as AIRFRANCE, is the French flag carrier headquartered in Tremblay-en-France, , and is one of the world's largest airlines. It is a subsidiary of the Air France-KLM Group and a founding member of the SkyTeam global airline alliance...

       director Henri Guillaumet
      Henri Guillaumet
      Henri Guillaumet was a French aviator.He was a pioneer of French aviation in the Andes, the South Atlantic and the North Atlantic. He contributed to the opening up of numerous new routes and is regarded by some as the best pilot of his age...

      ). Although the musical production successfully debuted on 25 August 2011, the theatre was soon deluged with two-to-four metres of water generated by Hurricane Irene
      Hurricane Irene (2011)
      Hurricane Irene was a large and powerful Atlantic hurricane that left extensive flood and wind damage along its path through the Caribbean, the United States East Coast and as far north as Atlantic Canada in 2011...

      , which struck the east coast of the United States three days later. After pumping the floodwaters from the building and partially restoring the costumes and stage sets, the musical production 'resurfaced' on 2 September.

      Literature

      • After his disappearance, Consuelo de Saint Exupéry wrote The Tale of the Rose, which was published in 2000 and subsequently translated into 16 languages.
      • Saint-Exupéry is mentioned in Tom Wolfe
        Tom Wolfe
        Thomas Kennerly "Tom" Wolfe, Jr. is a best-selling American author and journalist. He is one of the founders of the New Journalism movement of the 1960s and 1970s.-Early life and education:...

        's The Right Stuff
        The Right Stuff (book)
        The Right Stuff is a 1979 book by Tom Wolfe about the pilots engaged in U.S. postwar experiments with experimental rocket-powered, high-speed aircraft as well as documenting the stories of the first Project Mercury astronauts selected for the NASA space program...

        : "A saint in short, true to his name, flying up here at the right hand of God. The good Saint-Ex! And he was not the only one. He was merely the one who put it into words most beautifully and anointed himself before the altar of the right stuff."
      • In 2000, Jean-Pierre de Villers wrote a novella telling the imagined story of Saint-Exupéry's last flight, The Last Flight of the Little Prince.
      • Comic-book author Hugo Pratt
        Hugo Pratt
        Hugo Eugenio Pratt was an Italian comic book creator who was known for combining strong storytelling with extensive historical research on works such as Corto Maltese...

         imagined the fantastic story of Saint-Exupéry's last flight in Saint-Exupéry : le dernier vol (1994).

      Film

      • Saint-Exupéry and his wife Consuelo were portrayed by Bruno Ganz
        Bruno Ganz
        Bruno Ganz is a Swiss actor, known for his roles as Damiel in Wings of Desire and Adolf Hitler in Downfall.- Early life :Bruno Ganz was born in Zürich to a Swiss mechanic father and a northern Italian mother. He had decided to pursue an acting career by the time he entered university...

         and Miranda Richardson
        Miranda Richardson
        Miranda Jane Richardson is an English stage, film and television actor. She has been nominated for two Academy Awards, and has won two Golden Globes and a BAFTA during her career....

         in the 1997 biopic Saint-Ex
        Saint-Ex
        Saint-Ex is a 1997 British film biography of French author-adventurer Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, filmed and distributed in the United Kingdom, and featuring Bruno Ganz, Eleanor Bron, and Miranda Richardson. The script was by Frank Cottrell Boyce, while the writer's sons, Aidan and George, portrayed...

        , a British film biography of the French author-pilot. It also featured Eleanor Bron
        Eleanor Bron
        Eleanor Bron is an English stage, film and television actress and author.-Early life and family:Bron was born in 1938 in Stanmore, Middlesex, to a Jewish family of Eastern European origin...

         and was filmed and distributed in the United Kingdom, with scripting by Frank Cottrell Boyce. The film combines elements of biography, documentary, and dramatic re-creation.
      • Wings of Courage
        Wings of Courage
        Wings of Courage is a 1995 American-French drama film directed by Jean-Jacques Annaud. The 40-minute picture was written by Annaud with Alain Godard. It was the world's first dramatic picture shot in the IMAX-format...

        is a 1995 docudrama by French director Jean-Jacques Annaud
        Jean-Jacques Annaud
        Jean-Jacques Annaud is a French film director, film producer and screenwriter.- Biography :Annaud was born in Juvisy-sur-Orge, Essonne...

        . The movie was the world's first dramatic picture shot in the IMAX
        IMAX
        IMAX is a motion picture film format and a set of proprietary cinema projection standards created by the Canadian company IMAX Corporation. IMAX has the capacity to record and display images of far greater size and resolution than conventional film systems...

        -format, and is an account of the true story of early airmail pilots Henri Guillaumet
        Henri Guillaumet
        Henri Guillaumet was a French aviator.He was a pioneer of French aviation in the Andes, the South Atlantic and the North Atlantic. He contributed to the opening up of numerous new routes and is regarded by some as the best pilot of his age...

         (played by Craig Sheffer
        Craig Sheffer
        Craig Eric Sheffer is an American film and television actor. He is known for his leading role as Norman Maclean in the film A River Runs Through It and of Keith Scott on the television series One Tree Hill.-Early life:...

        ), Saint-Exupéry played by Tom Hulce
        Tom Hulce
        Thomas Edward "Tom" Hulce is an American actor and theater producer. As an actor, he is perhaps best known for his Oscar-nominated portrayal of Mozart in the movie Amadeus and his role as "Pinto" in National Lampoon's Animal House. Additional acting awards included a total of four Golden Globe...

        , and several others.

      Music

      • Saint-Exupéry's death and speculation that Horst Rippert shot him down are the subject of "Saint Ex", a song on Widespread Panic
        Widespread Panic
        Widespread Panic is an American rock band from Athens, Georgia. The current lineup includes guitarist/singer John Bell, bassist Dave Schools, drummer Todd Nance, percussionist Domingo "Sunny" Ortiz, keyboardist John "JoJo" Hermann, and guitarist Jimmy Herring...

        's eleventh studio album, Dirty Side Down
        Dirty Side Down
        Dirty Side Down is the eleventh studio album by the Athens, Georgia based band Widespread Panic. The album contains 12 songs that incorporate Panic's unique blend of rock, jazz and blues inspired textures into songs flowing with melody, rhythm and emotion.Songs, such as the dark, multi-layered...

        .
      • The Norwegian progressive rock band Gazpacho
        Gazpacho (band)
        Gazpacho are an Art rock band from Oslo, Norway.The original core band of Jan-Henrik Ohme , Jon-Arne Vilbo and Thomas Andersen started making music together in 1996 and the band has since expanded with Mikael Krømer , Lars Erik Asp and Kristian Torp .Gazpacho's music has been described by one...

        's concept album Tick Tock is based on Saint-Exupéry's desert crash.

      See also

      • Consuelo de Saint Exupéry (wife)
      • List of The Little Prince adaptations
      • Saint-Ex
        Saint-Ex
        Saint-Ex is a 1997 British film biography of French author-adventurer Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, filmed and distributed in the United Kingdom, and featuring Bruno Ganz, Eleanor Bron, and Miranda Richardson. The script was by Frank Cottrell Boyce, while the writer's sons, Aidan and George, portrayed...

        , a 1997 British biopic

      Indexed listing of Wikipedia articles related to Saint-Exupéry

      Further reading

      Selected biographies

      External links

       –
      The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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