Mircea EliadeMircea Eliade (; – April 22, 1986) was a Romanian historian of religion, fiction writer, philosopher, and professor at the University of Chicago. He was a leading interpreter of religious experience, who established paradigms in religious studies that persist to this day. His theory that ''hierophanies'' form the basis of religion, splitting the human experience of reality into sacred and profane space and time, has proved influential. One of his most instrumental contributions to religious studies was his theory of ''eternal return'', which holds that myths and rituals do not simply commemorate hierophanies, but, at least to the minds of the religious, actually participate in them.
His literary works belong to the fantastic and autobiographical genres. The best known are the novels ''Maitreyi'' ('La Nuit Bengali' or 'Bengal Nights'), ''Noaptea de Sânziene'' ('The Forbidden Forest'), ''Isabel și apele diavolului'' ('Isabel and the Devil's Waters'), and ''Romanul Adolescentului Miop'' ('Novel of the Nearsighted Adolescent'); the novellas ''Domnișoara Christina'' ('Miss Christina') and ''Tinerețe fără tinerețe'' ('Youth Without Youth'); and the short stories ''Secretul doctorului Honigberger'' ('The Secret of Dr. Honigberger') and ''La Țigănci'' ('With the Gypsy Girls').
Noted for his vast erudition, Eliade had fluent command of five languages (Romanian, French, German, Italian, and English) and a reading knowledge of three others (Hebrew, Persian, and Sanskrit). He was elected a posthumous member of the Romanian Academy. Provided by Wikipedia