Pierre Bayle Bibliography

Critique g‚n‚rale de l'histoire du calvinisme de M. Maimbourg 1682
Lettre sur la comŠte 1682
Bayle’s first published work, which, consisting of an investigation of the widespread fears aroused by the great comet, is an attack on intolerance, superstition, and current standards of philosophical and historical scholarship. It also included a discussion of the virtues of the atheist. A revised edition appeared in 1683 under the title, Pens‚es diverses sur la comŠte.
Nouvelles de la République des Lettres (News from the Republic of Letters) 1684
A monthly journal Bayle published between 1684-8, which established him as one of Europe’s leading freethinkers.
Recueil de quelques pièces curieuses concernant la philosophie de M. Descartes 1684
Nouvelles lettres de l'auteur de la Critique g‚n‚rale 1685
Ce que c'est que la France toute catholique sous le rŠgne de Louis Le Grand 1686
Commentaire philosophique sur ces paroles de Jésus-Christ: "Contrains-les d'entrer" 1686
A plea for religious tolerance in the form of an answer to Catholic apologists who had sought to justify the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes by quoting Jesus's words in St Luke, chapter XIV.
R‚ponse d'un nouveau converti aux lettres d'un refugi‚ 1689
Avis important aux refugiez sur leur prochain retour en France 1690
Projets et fragments d’un Dictionnaire critique 1692
Dictionnaire Historique et Critique (1695-7, trans, as A General Dictionary: Historical and Critical) 1695
"From Bayle the philosophy of the Enlightenment learned to formulate its own problems; in his  Dictionary it found already forged the weapons required for the emancipation of historical thinking". (Cassirer).

The influence of the Dictionary was felt throughout Europe for the next hundred years. Wishing to correct and amplify Moreri’s encyclopaedia, Bayle soon proceeded far beyond his original intention and overwhelmed his entries with annotations and illustrative quotations. He challenged the assumptions and the reverence for authority which had characterized almost all his predecessors in the field.  Through painstaking research into the lives and thought of hundreds of biblical and historical figures, he subjected countless philosophical and religious doctrines to critical scrutiny, and demonstrated, with scathing wit and dialectical virtuosity, that none of them had any legitimate claim to the status of final truth.  Bayle argued that reason was too feeble an instrument to be relied upon in the truth.

An English translation appeared between 1734-41 in ten volumes under the title A General Dictionary, Historical and Critical: In which a new and accurate Translation of that of the Celebrated Mr. Bayle, with the Corrections and Observations printed in the late Edition at Paris, is included; and interspersed with several thousand Lives never before published. The whole containing the History of the most Illustrious Persons of all Ages and Nations, particularly those of Great Britain and Ireland, distinguished by their Rank, Actions, Learning and other Accomplishments. With reflections on such Passages of Mr. Bayle, as seem to favour Scepticism and the Manichee System. By the Reverend Mr. John Peter Bernard; the Reverend Mr. Thomas Birch; Mr. John Lockman; and other hands. And the Articles relating to Oriental History by George Sale, Gent. London: printed by James Bettenham, for G. Strahan, J. Clarke, T. Hatchet [etc].
claircissements sur certaines choses r‚pandues dans ce Dictionnaire 1701
R‚ponses aux questions d'un provincial 1703
Published between 1703 and 1704.
Continuation des pens‚es diverses (Continuation of the Diverse Thoughts) 1704
Entretiens de maxime et de th‚miste 1707
General Dictionary Historical and Critical 1734
First English edition, published in 10 vols between 1734 and 1741.