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Artemis Fowl, (anti)hero of the eponymous novel series by Eoin Colfer, is a self-described criminal genius and prodigy. He is known to have broken numerous age records, perhaps most notably that of youngest person ever to steal the Fairy Thief painting (in book 4).

Is there any evidence to suggest that Colfer based him on any specific prodigy/ies, either real-life ones or from earlier fictional works? Or was he just a "juvenile criminal genius" with no specific pre-existing inspirations?

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It is stated here:

his brother Donal's favourite conversation-starter in the pub: ''Artemis Fowl is based on me.''

and

''So I took this character, my brother Donal, the little 12-year-old Bond villain, and said, 'What if he kidnaps one of the leprechauns for the crock of gold?''

So apparently, Artemis is based on Colfer's brother Donal.

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    Interesting, and not what I was expecting. Is there any evidence of AF being based on someone else as well, perhaps someone who was more of a prodigy? Many complex fictional characters are inspired by more than just a single figure in real life. – Rand al'Thor Feb 5 '17 at 18:42

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