The son of a Romanian father and a French mother, born in Slatina, Romania, he spent most of his childhood in France but in his early teenage years returned to Romania, where he qualified as a teacher of French and married in 1936.
He returned to France in 1938 to complete his doctoral thesis. Caught by the outbreak of war in 1939, he remained there, eventually becoming a gifted writer. He was made a member of the Académie Française in 1970.
He died on March 28, 1994 and is buried in the Cimetiere de Montparnasse, Paris, France.
His works include: