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De Gua de Malves was acquainted with many of the French philosophes during the last decades of the Ancien Régime. He was an early, short-lived, participant, then editor (later replaced by Diderot) of the project that ended up as the great Encyclopédie. Condorcet claimed that it was in fact the Abbé who recruited Diderot to the project, though this claim has never been verified. In either case, Jean-Paul and Jean le Rond d'Alembert, also thought to have been recruited by the Abbé, first show up on the December 1746 payroll of the publishers who were backing the Encyclopédie project. Diderot was added just weeks later and took over as editor on 16 October 1747. At the funeral of the "profound geometrician", as Diderot called him, the eulogy was given by Condorcet.