Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Les fleurs du mal” as Want to Read:
Les fleurs du mal
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Read Book* *Different edition

Les fleurs du mal

4.27  ·  Rating Details ·  32,732 Ratings  ·  839 Reviews
These 'flowers of evil' are Baudelaire's supreme creation. Their recurring images of sea-voyage and the Orient stem from the poet's own journey to the East in 1841. Their inspiration was in no small part provided by his mistress, the coarse and rapacious Jeanne Duval. Their decadent vision and distinctive voice inspired the works of Mallarmé, Rimbaud and Verlaine, lighting ...more
Paperback, 366 pages
Published November 20th 1987 by Picador Classics (first published 1857)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Les fleurs du mal, please sign up.

Popular Answered Questions

Peter Crofts There is, according to some, a hidden architecture to Les Fleurs, but I don't think you really need to know all that much beforehand to enjoy…moreThere is, according to some, a hidden architecture to Les Fleurs, but I don't think you really need to know all that much beforehand to enjoy Baudelaire. Howard's translation really brings out the weird combination of formal discipline and chaotic imagery. If you want to give this work a try this is definitely the translation to go with.(less)
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Jan 16, 2008 Kelly rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Francophiles and poetry lovers
Recommended to Kelly by: My European history teacher
After reading Baudelaire, I suddenly find myself wanting to smoke cigarettes and say very cynical things while donning a trendy haircut. Plus, if I didn't read Baudelaire, how could I possibly carry on conversations with pretentious art students?

In all seriousness, though, I wish my French was better, so that I could read it in its intended language. I'm sure it looses something in the translation... but it's still great stuff nonetheless.

And with a title like "Flowers of Evil," how can you go
Sep 23, 2016 Lizzy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: france, poetry
I read Les Fleurs du Mal many years back, but it is still within me. Just a few words about this beautiful, sometimes nightmarish, masterpiece. What do you expect to feel when reading Charles Baudelaire? Nothing, I expect, falsely innocent, but superior free-flowing dream sequences of surrealism. I loved to read of prophetic dreams with occasional moments of grace, where the fallen world seems to transform itself into an eternally beautiful moment. As always with poetry we have our preferences, ...more

Here's a recent essay on Baudelaire from the trusty, always-interesting online mag The Millions:

So as to try to follow that, I've got to disclose a bit of an embarrassment. Baudelaire was, for me, the kind of poet only certain kinds of people liked. By this I don't mean Francophiles or the merely pretentious but there was something that set a devotee of C.B. apart from your average earnest, quavering, verbose, nervous poet or poetry fanboy.

It's hard to
MJ Nicholls
Superlative. Thrilling. Sensual. Naughty. Macabre. Joyous. Liberating. Essential. Poetry for the reluctant poetry reader, i.e. me. (A little distracted here listening to Belle & Sebastian’s Write About Love which I finally acquired. Hence the choppiness). Great translation. Don’t care about reading in the original or what is lost in translation. Each translation adds to or improves the previous and this one reads pretty swell to me. Where do I go from here? Verlaine? Rimbaud? Mallarmé? Pam A ...more
Olivier Delaye
Sep 14, 2016 Olivier Delaye rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Les Fleurs du Mal or The Flowers of Evil or, let’s extrapolate here, The Beauty of Evil is a masterpiece of French literature which should have pride of place in any bookcase worth its name, right between Milton’s Paradise Lost and Dante’s Divine Comedy. For indeed the beauty of evil, what with its mephitic yet oh so alluring aroma, is exactly what this book is about—a collection of poems and elegies reflecting Baudelaire’s views on our poor human condition stemming mainly from our doomed lives ...more
sweet jane
Feb 15, 2016 sweet jane rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Υπέροχη έκδοση!
Jun 01, 2015 Fernando rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Luego de leer “Las Flores del Mal”, debo admitir que me cuesta mucho ejercer una crítica (la palabra me demasiado suena fuerte) o una reseña sobre este libro mítico, debido a mis pobres conocimientos sobre poesía. Es más, recuerdo que cuando tuve que analizar poesía durante mi intento de estudio de la carrera de Licenciatura en Letras (porque de eso se trató, realmente) la pasé muy mal.
Los que verdaderamente saben de poesía no van a descubrir nada nuevo acerca de la maestría de Baudelaire a la
Vit Babenco
Jul 11, 2016 Vit Babenco rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
“And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: for God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.” Genesis
Ever since the forbidden fruit from the tree of knowledge was eaten any lore became an attribute of evil. So to read books in order to wide one’s horizons is just to sign a pact with the devil.
“Pillowed on evil, Satan Trismegist
Ceaselessly cradles our enchanted mind,
The flawless metal of our will
Jul 29, 2008 James rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of my favorite poets of all time.

Baudelaire emphasized above all the disassociated character of modern experience: the sense that alienation is an inevitable part of our modern world. In his prose, this complexity is expressed via harshness and shifts of mood.

The constant emphasis on beauty and innocence, even alongside the seamier aspects of humanity, reinforce an existentialist ideal that rejects morality and embraces transgression. Objects, sensations, and experiences often clash, implici
Ahmad Sharabiani
Les Fleurs du mal, Charles Baudelaire
عنوان: قطعه هایی از گلهای رنج؛ شاعر: شارل بودلر؛ برگردان: مرتصی شمس؛ تهران، گوتنبرگ، 1335، در 144 ص؛
عنوان: گلهای رنج گزینه اشعار شارل بودلر؛ شاعر: شارل بودلر؛ برگردان: محمدرضا پارسایار؛ تهران، انتشارات هرمس؛ 1380؛ در دوازده و 126 ص؛ دو زبانه؛ چاپ بعدی 1384؛ شابک: 9647100388؛ چاپ سوم 1391؛ چاپ چهارم 1393؛ شابک: 9789647100380؛ موضوع: شعر شاعران فرانسوی - قرن 19 م
عنوان: گلهای دوزخی؛ مترجم: نیما زاغیان؛ تهران، نگاه، 1393؛ در 455 ص؛ شابک: 9786003760332؛
گلهای رنج
Eldonfoil TH*E Whatever Champion
This is a step towards possession.

Certainly the possession does not last the entire way through, but even in the less interesting or repetitive poems there are some jarring lines, amplified by a soul in Heat.

Like any elevated piece of literature, Flowers of Evil consumed me to such an extent that at times I forgot I was reading words on a page, its intensity moving my mind into some unknown zone where images, thoughts, and recollections screamed by, colliding with each other. So, too, did I fee
How to describe this volume of poetry? Avant-garde, modernistic, innovative, original? Yes, all of those, and to use a modern slang word, edgy. So edgy in fact, for mid 19th century France, that Napoleon III's government prosecuted him for "an insult to public decency". Six of the poems were banned until 1949. Don't worry; by today's standards they are not so alarming.
translated by Edna St. Vincent Millay & George Dillon

It's outrageous that this wonderful translation is out of print.
After looking at many versions (including Richard Howard, James McGowan, and Cyril Scott who was my second favourite) this was the only one with truly good poems which replicated the original structures and had the glittering night-magic of Baudelaire's sensual, sinister, romantic, gothic wonderland. Which would of course have something to do with one of the translators herse
Mai Kais
Apr 16, 2012 Mai Kais rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
أزهار الشر فهو من أعظم دوايين الشعر التي ظهرت على مر العصور . صدر هذا الديوان عام 1855م .يقول هنري لوميتير في مقدمته للديوان :

"إن التمزق الذي عانى منه بودلير بين الرغبات الحسية التي عذبته طوال حياته وبين الإيمان الروحى سمة عصره المسيحى الكاثوليكي لتفشي سر هذه الأفكار التي سيطرت على روحه والتي تضمنتها قصائده والواضحةفي كل لغة وصور ورموز شعره "

مقتطفات من أجمل قصائد الديوان :

- القارورة
ألف فكرة كانت ترقد ...شرانق حريرية
راعشة بهدوء في الظلمات الكثيفة
تحلق باجنحتها وتباشر أنطلاقها
مخضبة باللازورد ملا
Beautifully debauched and morbid,
thank you for inspiring the symbolists and decadents.

Having read a few works by authors who were influenced by this, having seen works of art and illustrations either inspired or based on this, having random lines always swirling and being recited in my head, I thought it was time to revisit this...

Oh the joy I felt reading this again.

Favorite poems:
La Muse malade
La Muse vénale
La Beauté
Les Bijoux
Parfum exotique
Une Charogne
Le Vampire
À Celle qui e
rose vibrations
May 02, 2012 rose vibrations marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
My darling was naked, or nearly, for knowing my heart
she had left on her jewels, the bangles and chains
whose jingling music gave her the conquering air
of a Moorish slave on days her master is pleased

Whenever I hear such insolent harmonies,
that scintillating world of metal and stone
beguiles me altogether, and I am enthralled
by objects whose sound is a synonym for light

For there she lay on the couch, allowing herself
to be adored, a secret smile indulging
the deep and tenacious currents of my love
Lynn Beyrouthy
Apr 22, 2013 Lynn Beyrouthy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
When it comes to the most beautiful literature in the world, I radically believe in the imperial prominence of Nineteenth century French literature.
Charles Baudelaire is one of the poets that tremendously alimented this conviction.

Originally entitled "Les Lesbiennes" and brazenly delineating sexuality and libidinous desires, the poems which Baudelaire composed in the decade of 1840-1850 were continuously censored until 1857, when his work was published with the title "Les Fleurs du Mal".

The be
Mariam Okasha
Aug 18, 2011 Mariam Okasha rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
ليست تجربتي الأولى في قراءة الشعر المترجم ...فقد قرأت بعض شعر دانتي من قبل ..لكن بودلير مختلف
أعتقد أن قدرته على التشبيه قدرة عالية جدا و في كلٍ من قصائدهِ كنت أرى ابداعًا جديدًا لم أعهده من قبل .. في ديوان أزهار الشر أعجبني العديد من القصائد و أعتقد أنه بداية جيدة تؤهلني لأكون معجبة حقيقية بفن بودلير الراقي المميز
I read a majority of the poems in French, which made the experience more beautiful. Each word is like a unique brushstroke of color on a grand canvas, applied with varying degrees of pressure, and each deeply and sensually hued. Baudelaire’s poetry paints gorgeous images of emotion, desire, and wanting that remain with you. Reading Les fleurs was a deeply personal and stirring experience for me. I have many favorites and could provide analyses on a dozen poems or more, but for the sake of length ...more
No soy muy amante de la poesía en general. No obstante, debo reconocer que Baudelaire es la excepción que confirma la regla, sus obras siempre me dejan atónita. Estos poemas exploran una serie de temas, centrándose a menudo en las experiencias personales y los sentimientos del autor. En ellos quedan retratados la depravación, el amor, la liberación por el arte, la desesperación y la muerte.

Aug 15, 2009 Terence rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Terence by: New Book shelf at library
Shelves: poetry
Flowers of Evil was an entirely serendipitous impulse check-out from my local library. I can only imagine that what caught my eye was the title - Flowers of Evil - who could resist? So I pulled it from the shelf, opened it up at random, read a few verses, and said to myself "This isn't bad."

Not only was it "not bad" but it was extraordinarily good; good enough that Baudelaire has joined the list of authors I'll pay money for.

It's random events like finding authors whose work "speaks to me" in so
Kamrani Adnan
Jan 15, 2017 Kamrani Adnan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
مست شوید تا بردهی شهید زمان نباشید
مست شوید،
هماره مست شوید
از شراب، شعر، تقوا
از هرآنچه بخواهید...

باز دیداری نخست با فرهیختهایی از فرانسه اما اینبار شارل بودلر...
برخلاف سلین خوش مشرب که دیشب (سه روزمانده به بهمن۹۵) با مرگ قسطی فعلا ازش خداحافظی کردم، امشب با شاعری دیدار کردم که موقع خداحافظی، واژهی "درد" از دهانش خارج شد...!

بودلر، یا همان شاعرِ رنجها
با اینکه زادروزش نزدیک به ۲۰۰سال میرسه، اما انگار خیلی زنده و شفاف داره کلمات و واژهها رو به تعظیم خودش درمیاره
و البته دست سردش رو در شعر آخر این مجمو
Simona Bartolotta
Apr 19, 2012 Simona Bartolotta rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry, 1800
'Epigrafe per un libro condannato'
Non scrissi, o lettore innocente,
pacifico e buon cittadino,
per te questo mio saturnino
volume, carnale e dolente.

Se ancora non hai del sapiente
Don Satana appreso il latino,
non farti del mio sibillino
delirio turbare la mente!

Ma leggimi e sappimi amare,
se osi nel gorgo profondo
discendere senza tremare.

O triste fratello errabondo
che cerchi il tuo cielo diletto,
compiangimi, o sii maledetto!

In realtà, tutta l'essenza de I fiori del male è perfettamente condensata in
Feb 14, 2009 Rhonda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was so taken by this book that I memorized whole passages to repeat if only to myself at various times of the day. As I recall, my friends began to think I was mentally ill. Nevertheless, the power of this book was immense on my life as a college junior, I think, and it caused me to fall in love with everything that was French, cynical and wearing a beret, much like a Parisian waiter on his day off. I actually picked this book up because I loved the name, but it also began a long term love aff ...more
Death, decay, death, WOE, death, despair, death, afternoon tea!, death, death, some more WOE... That's the Eddie Izzard version of this collection.

Didn't finish all of them. I tried reading both the English and the French of every poem, so maybe that had something to do with it. This guy also gives Poe a run for his money in depressing. He translated Poe into French and made the imagery /more/ morose, if you can imagine. The poems I read I loved, though it does get a bit repetitive after awhile.
Mar 08, 2016 Mohammad rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
براي كسي مثل من كه هميشه توي روشنايي گم ميشه و هر بار توي تاريكي هست كه خودشو پيدا مي كنه، شعر بودلر مي تونه فوق العاده مطبوع باشه. سخته كه الان احساسم رو نسبت به اين شعر ها بگم و تعداد شعر هايي كه تو اين كتاب دوست داشتم انقدر زيادند كه نميشه نام برد. در مورد ترجمه اينكه، مستقيم از فرانسه ترجمه شده و ترجمه ها شاملويي هستند. يعني مترجم به جاي روال عادي ترجمه شعر به فارسي كه فقط منظور شاعر رو منتقل مي كنه، سعي كرده به شعر ها شاعرانگي اضافه كنه و به نظر من در اين كار كاملا موفق عمل كرده.
حرف آخر اين
Paulo Hora
Dec 24, 2016 Paulo Hora rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"O céu é a tampa negra da imensa marmita
Onde a humanidade coze a fogo lento e calado."
Rosa Ramôa
Oct 19, 2014 Rosa Ramôa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"É preciso estar sempre embriagado. Apenas isso, mais nada. Para não sentir o horrível fardo do Tempo que vos esmaga os ombros e vos dobra para o chão, é preciso que vos embriagueis sem tréguas. Mas de quê? De vinho, de poesia ou de virtude, à vossa escolha. Mas embriagai-vos.
E se alguma vez, nos salões de um palácio, sobre a erva de uma vala ou na solidão morna do vosso quarto, acordardes de uma embriaguez evanescente ou desaparecida, perguntai ao vento, à vaga, ao pássaro, ao relógio, a tudo o
RahafMouman Sy
May 13, 2015 RahafMouman Sy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: شعر
قوي.. غريب ومؤلم انت يابودلير
تناقضات حياة يومية صورها بودلير بمجموعة شعرية
بودلير بهذا التناقض يأخذك لرحلة بعيدة تطوف فيها حول الأنا الجرح والسكين
الأنا الضحية والجلاد ..انا عدو نفسي
كل مايجول بخاطرك .. الحب ، الطبيعة والأنسان
الضجر والسأم ، شقاء وعذوبة
صراحة وسودانية
مفردات وتشبيهات غريبة خاصة به وحده دون غيره
ولكن مهما كان المترجم محترفا فهو لن يوفي الشاعر حقه وهذا ماجعلني أقف تائهة حائرة عند بعض الكلمات ....
ولكن !
بوسعي أن اقول كبداية أنها تجربة جيدة في الشعر المترجم وهذا يدفعني للقراءة من جديد
Laurie –A Court of Books–
Baudelaire, I love you.
This is for this kind of books that I'm so happy to be native French. I was able to read it in its intended language.


I actually felt IT, what he meant, what he wanted me to feel, what he probably felt himself. Joy. Pain. Sorrow. Grief. Dreams. Depression. Ecstasy. Need. Helplessness. Freedom. Addiction. Adoration. Hatred. Wonder.

Just read it, it worth the try.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
¡ POETRY !: Confusion between editions and translations 2 77 Aug 31, 2015 06:51PM  
¡ POETRY !: Les Fleurs du Mal 2 65 Mar 12, 2015 01:39PM  
¡ POETRY !: Powerful poetry indeed! 1 9 Dec 20, 2014 02:00PM  
Goodreads Librari...: Incorrect search result 7 18 Dec 20, 2014 04:27AM  
Goodreads Feedback: Incorrect search results 14 39 Dec 19, 2014 12:57PM  
Goodreads Feedback: This topic has been closed to new comments. Misguided policy on works of translation 2 82 Dec 19, 2014 10:07AM  
Goodreads Librari...: This is a mess 15 59 Dec 19, 2014 09:27AM  
  • Alcools
  • Poésies complètes
  • Poèmes Saturniens
  • Collected Poems and Other Verse
  • Paroles
  • Maldoror and the Complete Works
  • Cuttlefish Bones
  • Capital of Pain
  • Les Contemplations
  • The Selected Poems
  • Duino Elegies
  • Aurélia
Charles Pierre Baudelaire was a 19th century French poet, translator, and literary and art critic whose reputation rests primarily on Les Fleurs du Mal; (1857; The Flowers of Evil) which was perhaps the most important and influential poetry collection published in Europe in the 19th century. Similarly, his Petits poèmes en prose (1868; "Little Prose Poems") was the most successful and innovative e ...more
More about Charles Baudelaire...

Share This Book

“My heart is lost; the beasts have eaten it.” 158 likes
“The Poet is a kinsman in the clouds
Who scoffs at archers, loves a stormy day;
But on the ground, among the hooting crowds,
He cannot walk, his wings are in the way.”
More quotes…