Dukasaur wrote:This is not even a contest.
The first is a writer of some second-rate fantasy novels that just happen to have been around at the right place at the right time, when popular interest in such crap was ascendant.
The second was a garden variety pervert and pedophile, who just happened to inherit enough money and titles that he kept getting reprieved for crimes that would have meant the death penalty for a commoner. It is noteworthy that he never had a relationship with a person of equivalent social rank, and had to practise his perversions on prostitutes, servants, children of servants, prisoners, and kidnapping victims.
The third is a legitimate gentleman adventurer. Never a rapist, he seduced possibly 5,000 women and quite a few men as well, all in purely consensual relations. Unlike the second who preyed upon vulnerable persons of low social standing, the third always aimed above his station, seducing countesses, duchesses, senators, mayors, bishops, and princesses of royal blood. Nor were his exploits all in the bedroom -- he was an accomplished swordsman surviving numerous duels, a card shark and a legitimate chess master, a Rosicrucian and Freemason, a secret agent and political manipulator, and above all a legendary charlatan who loved separating gullible believers in the occult from their money.
First, when we refer to the second we call him Sade and not de Sade. He spent a big part of his life in prison for his immoral novels and even ended in a sanitarium. He was a big seducer and got all the pussy he wanted in real life from high society women. the term "sadism" comes from him. He was indeed a huge pervert, but he didn't do half of the things he describes in his novels (turture, incest, murder rapes...) The erotism of his novels is still very apreciated by modern day swingers.
He went really extremely far in his writtings, possibly the sickest ideas related to sex you can imagine. An italian movie was made in the late 70s called "salo and the 120 days of sodome". Salo was basically a republic created by mussolini when he was about to lose his power where he did horrible things. Pasolini, the film director did something in this environment and with scenes basically inspired from Sade. Possibly the most horrible movie I've ever seen, couldn't watch it entirely. Pasolini got murdered short after the release of his movie, because it was so terribly shocking. Sade's novels had never been published till the mid 1950s, they were passed from hand to hand during a century and a half before they came to light.
Anyway, Sade is a bit more that what you describe, he was a philosopher and a revolutionary, and he didnt get away with everything because of his titles (he was acually a count, just a marquis until the death of his father). Doesn't mean I like this character, but he was more than a pervert sicko, he wrote the most politically incorrect books that will probably ever be to try to reshape society and make minds evolve..