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Melmoth the Wanderer

3.71  ·  Rating Details ·  2,988 Ratings  ·  173 Reviews
Written by an eccentric Anglican curate, Melmoth the Wanderer (1820) brought the terrors of the Gothic novel to a new fever pitch of intensity. Its tormented villain seeks a victim to release from his fatal pact with the devil, and Maturin's bizarre narrative structure whirls the reader from rural Ireland to an idyllic Indian island, from a London madhouse to the dungeons ...more
Paperback, Oxford World's Classics, Reprint, 560 pages
Published 1968 by Oxford University Press (first published 1820)
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Vasilis Manias Speaking for the GReek edition, i think not. In Public Bookstores i think i saw the English version available too.
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Community Reviews

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Bill  Kerwin
There's an old story told by Ezra Pound--I believe it can be found either in "The ABC of Reading" or "From Confucius to Cummings"--about a retired sea captain, determined to improve his primary school Latin, who was tasked by his tutor (the local vicar or schoolmaster) with reading Vergil's Aeneid. When he had finished, his mentor inquired, "How did you like the hero?"

"Hero? What hero?" the captain replied.

"Why, it's Aeneus I mean," answered the teacher.

"Hero? You call him a hero? By God, I
Nickolas the Kid
Μετά από μια όμορφη συνανάγνωση στην Λέσχη του Βιβλίου, τελείωσε ο Μέλμοθ...

Θεωρώ πως είναι ένα καλό γοτθικό μυθιστόρημα το οποίο όμως αν ήταν 300 σελίδες λιγότερο θα ήταν ακόμα πιο δυνατό.
Το βιβλίο ουσιαστικά είναι ιστορίες μέσα σε ιστορίες οι οποίες έχουν σαν κεντρικό χαρακτήρα τον καταραμένο Μέλμοθ. Ο Μάτσουριν θίγει πολλά θέματα όπως η θρησκεία, ο κλήρος, ο έρωτας, οι αστικές τάξεις αλλά δεν μπορεί να μείνει αποστασιοποιημένος οπότε πολλές φορές καταλήγει σε αφελή συμπεράσματα ή απλοϊκές εξη
Sep 09, 2013 Edward rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Note on the Text
Select Bibliography
A Chronology of Charles Robert Maturin

--Melmoth the Wanderer

Explanatory Notes
Kostas Kinas
Dec 31, 2016 Kostas Kinas rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was created by an Irish clergyman and is considered one of the highlights in Gothic Literature. It is exciting, dark and horrifying but not all the time. Of course it would be very difficult to be so because it’s extremely long. There's a guy supposed to have sold his soul to the devil. The novel has a Chinese box structure with long stories within stories each fitting inside the next larger one. However, I was hoping for something a little bit more because the beginning set too high e ...more
Tim Mayer
Where do I begin with this one? To say I've been working on it thirty years plus would be bragging. I first encountered Melmoth in HP Lovecraft's Supernatural Horror in Literature, where he praised it to the rafters. I spent a summer working as a delivery man while in college, so I read the first part of Melmoth in the cab of a truck. This time around, I was working a part-time job on the graveyard shift, where I read the novel at 2AM while trying to fight sleep (always the optimum way to experi ...more
Vicky Ziliaskopoulou
Είναι πολύ ωραίο βιβλίο. Κεντρικό πρόσωπο ο Μέλμωθ (ο Περιπλανώμενος) και πολλές ιστορίες με διαφορετικούς πρωταγωνιστές, που όμως όλες περιστρέφονται γύρω από τον Μέλμωθ. Και στο τέλος αποκαλύπτεται το "μυστικό", για το οποίο γίνεται πολλές φορές λόγος σε όλο το βιβλίο. Ο συγγραφέας καταφέρνει και σε βάζει πολύ περίτεχνα μέσα στο κλίμα της εποχής που γράφτηκε το βιβλίο, μέσα σε όλη τη θρησκοληψία και τις συνήθειες της εποχής.

Ως αρνητικό του βιβλίου θεωρώ ότι πλατειάζει ασκόπως πολύ περισσότερε
Vasilis Manias
Feb 03, 2016 Vasilis Manias rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Σπάνια θα συναντήσεις ένα τόσο τρομακτικό σε όγκο βιβλίο που θα σε απορροφήσει σε τέτοιο βαθμό. Η χρονική περίοδος που γράφτηκε και δημοσιεύτηκε (κάπου στο 1820) αλλά και ο τρόπος με τον οποίο παρουσιάζει αλλά και συνδέει τις πάμπολες διαφορετικές ιστορίες σε σημεία σου κόβουν την ανάσα. Εκπληκτικός ο χαρακτήρας του Μελμόθ, αλλά και της Ιμαλή, σίγουρα θα αργήσουν να σβήσουν από το μυαλό μου καθώς μιλάμε για ένα κείμενο που μοιάζει με ρώσικη μπάμπουσκα που όσες και αν ανοίξεις, πάντα περιμένεις κ ...more
Maria Thomarey
Mar 21, 2017 Maria Thomarey rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4,5 . Ια να μην αδικήσω τα 5ρια
Readmarathon 2017 11/26 ενα βιβλιο με πάνω άπω 700σελίδες

Finally. Δεν ξέρω τι να πρωτογραψω γι'αυτο το βιβλιο . Το ποσο άργησα να το τελειώσω ειναι παραπλανητικό . Για λόγους υγείας και γιατι μπήκαν στη μέση αλλα βιβλία ,το είχα παρατήσει πολλούς μήνες .
Ας μιλήσουμε ομως για το βιβλιο . Γραμμένο απο έναν Ιρλανδο προτεστάντη, επαγγελματία πάστορα, ειναι ενα ακόμη δείγμα του ρομαντισμού. It's about the evil but surprisingly that evil was not as bad as we expected
Apr 19, 2017 Spyridoula rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Μετά κόπων και βασάνων κατάφερα να τελειώσω ένα βιβλίο, που μου είχε γεννήσει ιδιαίτερα μεγάλες προσδοκίες όταν το έπιασα στα χέρια μου!
Πυκνογραμμένο, με νοήματα δυσκολονόητα σε κάποιες περιπτώσεις, κουραστικά επαναλαμβανόμενο γράφοντας και ξαναγράφοντας ίδια πράγματα με άλλες λέξεις! Και για την υποκρισία της Εκκλησίας το πιάσαμε από τις πρώτες κιόλας γραμμές και για τον χειριστικό ρόλο των ιερέων και λειτουργών της επίσης!!! Δεν χρειάζονταν 950 σελίδες διαρκούς επανάληψης για να εμπεδώσουμε τη
Evripidis Gousiaris
Εκπληκτική γοτθική ιστορία όπου θα προκαλέσει πληθώρα συναισθημάτων στον αναγνώστη. Αφηγήσεις με διαφορετική χροιά και κλίμα θα συνθέσουν τον σκοτεινό θρύλο του Μέλμοθ, ο οποίος περιπλανιέται σε διάφορα σημεία του χάρτη ανεπηρέαστος από τον χρόνο, αφήνοντας πίσω του θάνατο και δυστυχία. Εντυπωσιακή η μέθοδος που ο συγγραφέας παρουσιάζει την κάθε αφήγηση καθώς και ο τρόπος που της προσδίδει την δική της ατμόσφαιρα. Αξέχαστες στιγμές αγωνίας μέσα σε μοναστήρια και μπουντρούμια αλλά και ρομαντικά ε ...more
Apr 09, 2017 Yanper rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Το διάβασα με μεγάλες προσδοκίες αλλά ήταν μία απογοήτευση για μένα. Μεγάλο σε όγκο, όχι γιατί είχε να πει πολλά αλλά γιατί πλάτειαζε ανούσια, καταντώτας σε πολλά σημεία κουραστικό. Θύμιζε τις ρωσσικές κούκλες, τις μπαμπούσκα, μία ιστορία μέσα σε μία άλλη, μέσα σε μία άλλη, μέσα σε μία άλλη, με κεντρικό πρόσωπο τον Μέλμοθ τον περιπλανώμενο τον υποτιθέμενο υπηρέτη του διαβόλου που όμως ήταν τόσο άχρωμος που ακόμη και ο μπαμπούλας με τον οποίο τρόμαζαν κάποτε τα παιδιά να φαίνεται πιο τρομακτικός.
Sep 16, 2009 Simon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror
This had been sitting on my shelf to read for some time now, for some reason it never felt like the time. Most of the classic fiction I have read has been in much shorter form and I was quite intimidated by this Gothic epic that I worried might be quite hard work. After completing it, it did feel like a mammoth undertaking but well worth the effort.

Melmoth the Wanderer, damned for some undiscovered reason and doomed to wander the earth looking for individuals in the pit of despair and anguish i
Δωράκι από τη θεία η συγκεκριμένη έκδοση καθώς ξέρει πόσο μου αρέσουν οι Εκδόσεις Ερατώ. Άλλη μια φορά το εξώφυλλο, η μετάφραση, η εισαγωγή, το χρονολόγιο στο τέλος, ακόμα και η γραμματοσειρά είναι εξαιρετικά.

Τον Μέλμοθ τον είχα στα υπόψιν μου κάποια στιγμή να τον διαβάσω αλλά δεν ήξερα γιατί υπήρχε μία ογκώδης και μία μικρή έκδοση. Όπως φαίνεται κάποιος εκδότης αποφάσισε να συμπτύξει το αρχικό κείμενο καθώς «τα δεκάδες περίπλοκα επεισόδια και οι αφηγήσεις που αναπτύσσονται μέσα σε άλλες αφηγήσ
Ahmad Sharabiani
Melmoth the Wanderer, Charles Robert Maturin
Aug 22, 2007 Clint rated it it was amazing
This book is already pretty long, but I think it should have been twice it's length. A very slow-moving, atmospheric, very well-written story containing stories containing stories. The organization is a little slipshod, and I get the feeling that the author just stopped the story and finished it before he had orginally wanted to, but that doesn't really detract from the MAJESTY of this work.
Nov 13, 2013 Panagiotis rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Επιτέλους μπόρεσα να γράψω για αυτό το βιβλίο.
Ας ξεκινήσουμε από την αρχή. Ο Ρομαντισμός ήταν μια αντίδραση στον ορθολογισμό του Διαφωτισμού. Το γοτθικό μυθιστόρημα γεννήθηκε και ανδρώθηκε μέσα σε αυτό κίνημα. Εισάγοντας το στοιχείο του υπερφυσικού στην πλοκή, η δράση μεταφέρεται σε απομονωμένους πύργους και μοναστήρια, επιζητώντας τη συναισθηματική φόρτιση του αναγνώστη. Αγαπά το σκοτάδι ή το ημίφως που σχηματίζει μακριές απειλητικές σκιές. Κινείται μέσα σε περίκλειστους χώρους, δαιδαλώδεις κατ
Rob Bliss
This is a tough one. Im glad I reached the end, 542 pages, and I dont want to read it again. Published in 1820. Part of the Gothic novel tradition at its earliest, after Radcliffe and Lewis.

Its not what I expected. Its worse. Melmoth is hardly in it. Instead, there are many stories about other people doing other things, and once in a while Melmoth pops in. Like The Decameron or The Canterbury Tales with so many stories. Being from 1820, the descriptions are VERY long and it takes a while for the
Kieran Walsh
Dec 13, 2008 Kieran Walsh rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Melmoth was probably the finest example of Gothic horror. Maturin was a great uncle of Oscar Wilde (and some useless information here) Oscar Wilde lived out his days in France under the name of Memoth. The Character sells his sould to the devil in exchange for 150 'extra' years and spends the time wandering the earth looking for somebody to take on the pact. The book is vitriolic in its anti-Catholicism so serves as a good barometer of religious sentiment in popular culture in the early part of ...more
J.M. Hushour
May 13, 2013 J.M. Hushour rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I tried really, really, really hard to like this book. Hell, Baudelaire and Wilde both loved it, so it can't be all bad could it? And scads of people regard it as a classic of the late Gothic genre, so it can't be all bad could it?
Why, yes...yes, it is! Plodding and dull, with around 50% of the text quotations from other works, including Gothic writers such as Radcliffe and Lewis, a peculiarity that maybe I've just never noticed in works of the time, there is little of note here. Maturin, a fine
Jan 03, 2011 Joshua rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
While parts of this were very interesting, it had one too many points that just dragged the reader down into the deep, dark depths of boredom. Also, a good chunk of it was just anti-Catholic propaganda, and while I'm not Catholic, I don't care for propaganda in general--unless, of course, it's a good read. Granted, the premise was very good, and the story of Immalee was enthralling, not to mention the actual story; but there was one too many stories within a story within a story. It became frust ...more
Olivier Lepetit
Jul 24, 2011 Olivier Lepetit rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Challenging read, but fascinating at the same time. A scathing criticism of catholicism, barely hidden by the story of Melmoth, a poor soul destined to wander the earth looking for someone to pass his curse on and allow him to pass away peacefully.

The structure of this novel is simply evil, with stories within stories within stories. I personally found the tale of the unwilling monk in the Spanish Inquisition times the best - truly horrifying at times.

I lost the plot in the Indian tale - especia
Jun 22, 2016 Tara rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Those of a temper naturally violent
Melmoth the Wanderer was definitely my kind of gothic novel. It was dark and sinister, often ghastly, and overwhelmingly elegant. Melmoth is a protagonist you won’t soon forget.

One complaint: 660 pages? Really, publisher?? You couldn’t possibly have added 6 more pages, perhaps by way of an afterword or one of those lame “reading group guides” you’re so fond of? Given the subject matter, this seems an almost reprehensible oversight ;)

Lastly, if you’d like a concise (and metal!) summary of the boo
Vasilios Kats
Τελειωσε ο κυριος Μελμοθ. Το πρωτο μισο εδειχνε για ενα πολλα υποσχομενο βιβλιο,ομως οσο περνουσε η ωρα,καποιες διηγησεις μεσα σε αλλες διηγησεις , αποδυναμωσαν λιγακι την ενταση της αναγνωσης σε σημειο να με κουρασει λιγακι η ,καποιες φορες, ασκοπη φλυαρια του.
Ο ματουριν φανηκε πως ηθελε να κανει επιδειξη γνωσεων σε καποια σημεια με αποτελεσμα να αφαιρει λιγο απο το ενδιαφερον του αναγνωστη. Ενα ωραιο βιβλιο,που θα μπορουσε να ειναι ακομη πιο ωραιο αν ελλειπε η ακατασχετη φλυαρια του συγγραφεα
The Literary Chick
Jun 18, 2013 The Literary Chick rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror, dark, gothic
Intense imagery, takes a while to get back into reading 18 th century works, but if I don't do it once in a while I tend to lose the knack since it requires more work on the reader's part to decipher the prose. Could see why Poe and Baudelaire liked it, hellish baroque imagery occasionally shot through with black humor.
Leah Rachel
Feb 10, 2015 Leah Rachel rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is technically an awful novel. It at one point reaches 4 nested narratives within the main one. Each nested narrative is closer to the ending of the book, and the last bit of the outward narrative makes up a couple chapters. The relations are mostly just Melmoth- little else combines them all. It's impossible to name a main character except perhaps for Melmoth, who is almost entirely absent at the beginning of the tale then increasing so throughout.

And that's the genius, somehow, of th
Mar 14, 2014 Isidore rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Setting aside some forgivable overly-impassioned moments, Melmoth is written with vigour and elegance. Fundamentally a powerful anti-clerical melodrama, its nightmarish horrors and fiendish characters (Melmoth is often less objectionable than many of the book's non-diabolic inhabitants) are nicely balanced by a surprisingly large amount of grim humour.

Its chief flaw lies in the excessive length of the "Tale of the Indians", to my mind the least compelling of the various sub-narratives which comp
Melmoth the Wanderer is considered one of the highlights in Gothic Literature. Noted as one of Maturin's finer works (most others were not so well received), the novel focuses on a series of characters who meet and are tempted by the title character, Melmoth the Wanderer, a man who has sold his soul to the devil in exchange for prolonged life. Cursed, he wanders the globe looking for one willing to give their soul in place of his.

The premise is fascinating and many sections of the tale are diffi
Sarah  Perry
Mar 25, 2010 Sarah Perry rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: obsession, ireland
Favourite parts:

"His hands, that had convulsively been catching at the blankets, let go their short and quivering grasp, and lay extended on the bed like the claws of some bird that had died of hunger . . . so meager, so yellow, so spread"

After burning the painting:
"You have burned me, then; but those are flames I can survive . . . . I am alive . . . I am beside you”

When Stanton is in the insane asylum

being taunted by Melmoth:
“You must be content with the spider and the rat, to crawl and
My Inner Shelf
Gros pavé que voilà mais ô combien jouissif ! Monument du roman gothique, romantique et fantastique, le Melmoth de Maturin nous offre là une fresque recouvrant tous les aspects du mythe de Faust, du suppôt de Satan errant parmi les hommes. Dépaysant et complexe dans sa construction, ce roman a pour héros un personnage quasiment absent, dont chaque récit, écrits, rapportés, offre un nouveau décor, un nouveau thème. Les différents récits nous transportent des geôles de l’Inquisition aux jungles id ...more
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Charles Maturin was an Irish Protestant clergyman (ordained by the Church of Ireland) and a writer of gothic plays and novels.

His first three works were published under the pseudonym Dennis Jasper Murphy and were critical and commercial failures. They did, however, catch the attention of Sir Walter Scott, who recommended Maturin's work to Lord Byron. With the help of these two literary luminaries,
More about Charles Robert Maturin...

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“There is no error more absurd, and yet more rooted in the heart of man, than the belief that his sufferings will promote his spiritual safety.” 31 likes
“Yes, I laugh at all mankind, and the imposition that they dare to practice when they talk of hearts. I laugh at human passions and human cares, vice and virtue, religion and impiety; they are all the result of petty localities, and artificial situation. One physical want, one severe and abrupt lesson from the colorless and shriveled lip of necessity, is worth all the logic of the empty wretches who have presumed to prate it, from Zeno down to Burgersdicius. It silences in a second all the feeble sophistry of conventional life, and ascetical passion.” 15 likes
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