Victor-Marie Hugo (February 26, 1802 - May 22, 1885) is recognized as the most influential Romantic writer of the 19th century and is often identified as the greatest French poet. His best-known works are doubtless the novels Les Misérables and Notre-Dame de Paris (The Hunchback of Notre-Dame). Poetry was another of his vocations: among many volumes, Les Contemplations and La Légende des siècles stand particularly high in critical esteem. Though extremely conservative in his youth, he moved to the political left as the decades passed; he became a passionate supporter of republicanism and of a European Union. His work touches upon most of the political and social issues and artistic trends of his time.
Hugo, Victor, 156-157