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The Comte de Saint Germain (French pronunciation: 1691 or 1712 – 27 February 1784) was a European adventurer, with an interest in science, alchemy and the arts. He achieved prominence in European high society of the mid-18th century. Prince Charles of Hesse-Kassel considered him to be "one of the greatest philosophers who ever lived". St. Germain used a variety of names and titles, an accepted practice amongst royalty and nobility at the time. These include the Marquis de Montferrat, Comte Bellamarre, Chevalier Schoening, Count Weldon, Comte Soltikoff, Manuel Doria, Graf Tzarogy, and Prinz Ragoczy. To deflect enquiries as to his origins, he would make far-fetched claims, such as being 500 years old, leading Voltaire to sarcastically dub him "The Wonderman" and that "He is a man who does not die, and who knows everything".
His real name is unknown while his birth and background are obscure, but towards the end of his life, he claimed that he was a son of Prince Francis II Rákóczi of Transylvania. His name has occasionally caused him to be confused with Claude Louis, Comte de Saint-Germain, a noted French general.