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3.72 of 5 stars 3.72  ·  rating details  ·  2,493 ratings  ·  134 reviews
Il arriva juste au pied de la terrasse. Salammbô était penchée sur la balustrade ; ces effroyables prunelles la contemplaient, et la conscience lui surgit de tout ce qu'il avait souffert pour elle. Bien qu'il agonisât, elle le revoyait dans sa tente, à genoux, lui entourant la taille des ses bras, balbutiant des paroles douces ; elle avait soif de les sentir encore, de les ...more
Paperback, 464 pages
Published October 1st 1996 by Insel, Frankfurt (first published 1862)
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I'd not intended to read Salammbô, Flaubert's close-to-unknown second novel, but I was at the end of Madame Bovary and saw a yellowing 1922 edition in the 1 Franc pile at the Geneva flea market's book stall. How could I resist? It's a strange book, and at first I had trouble getting into it. I'd expected it to be like Madame Bovary, and it really isn't. Instead of the tedium of French provincial life and the brilliant character development, we have a wide-screen historical epic set around Cartha ...more
mark monday
You pass through the intimidating portcullis and enter the museum called Salammbô by Gustave Flaubert. It is an awesome edifice and you are duly awed. So ornate, so steeped in olden times and ancient ways, so stylish in its baroque Orientalism. The first gallery amazes you. It describes a feast for barbarians in the halcyon days of old Carthage. Such a feast, such sights to behold! A feast for the senses: your mind comes alive to witness the wonders there, the luscious imagery, the dreamy atmosp ...more
Mar 16, 2012 Jessica rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Jessica by: professor for terrible class that actually has a pretty great reading list
Just as it's hard to believe that the Rod Stewart who gave us the classic Every Picture Tells a Story is also responsible for "Da Ya Think I'm Sexy?", it's baffling that Flaubert wrote Salammbô right after his more famous effort.

This is a historical novel about a revolt against Carthage by unpaid mercenaries following the First Punic War. It hasn't aged nearly as gracefully as Madame Bovary, and I consider it to be quite a difficult book. The first two thirds are just endlessly thick description
J.G. Keely
Carthage holds a certain fascination for me, as a classics scholar, in that it was an empire of power, influence, and grand personalities--and yet the legacy Carthage has left to us, her history, her culture were deliberately erased, burned to the ground with nary a trace remaining, and then replaced with the politicized fictions of Rome, who destroyed her, followed in her footsteps, and replaced her. The shadow of Carthage looms large across the ancient world, but she is always a shadow: dark, ...more
I LOVE this book.

It's set during the Punic Wars and is... wait for it... TOTALLY KICK ASS. It's super fast paced and bloody and sexy, and is the only time where Flaubert's love of the Marquis de Sade comes out. It's also my favorite novel of Flaubert's even though everyone seems to think it sucks. So so so so so cool.
Bryn Hammond
A lesson from a great master in how not to write historical fiction. Flaubert is a writer’s writer, as Spenser is called a poet’s poet, so I can say that for a review.

It’s as outrageously bloody as Ross Leckie’s Hannibal – of course, with a lot more class. As exotic as... I don’t know what. The past was never this exotic: not exotic to itself. Flaubert believed in the writer being like God, everywhere present but invisible. It isn’t my school (nor his other, that a writer observes the world but
The fever visions of a scholar of antiquity who, becalmed at sea, succumbs and drinks sea water. Werner Herzog should have put it to film in 1973 and bankrupted a movie studio. Bloody, surreal, phantasmagorical, pinwheeling on the edge of madness.
Luís Blue Yorkie
Famous for its erotic, sadistic, and decadent content, Flaubert's exotic novel Salammbô is also noted for its lush descriptive quality, visual brilliance, and Oriental texturing. It is a symbolic work notorious for its atmospheric evocation of a dying civilization and imagery of sensuous and terrifying cruelty. Set in North Africa after the First Punic War in the third century b.c., Salammbô details a mercenary revolt against the city of Carthage led by the Libyan soldier Mâtho and suppressed by ...more
Salambò è stata una sorpresa per me, lettrice affezionata di Flaubert. Il romanzo si discosta totalmente dalle altre opere da lui scritte per contenuti e toni. Si tratta di un romanzo epico, in cui sono narrate le gesta belliche tra i Cartaginesi, guidati dall’astuto genio militare di Amilcare Barca, e i Barbari, guerrieri mercenari provenienti dalle più svariate parti del mondo allora conosciuto, dai Greci ai Galli, dai Lusitani ai Libici, privi di un’organizzazione militare stabile ma coraggio ...more
Michael William West
It's so spectacularly precise. It's perfect, more or less. The attention to detail that would be expected of a poet given to a full length novel - Flaubert must have been a lunatic. It indulges enormous, baroque, ethnocentric fantasies, and I can't recall much literature that is as psychedelically ornate as this. Not anything like the psychological intricacy of Madame Bovary, but I found the Romantic brute Matho and the classical, tragic heroine Salammbo enthralling enough. So many vivid dream s ...more
Tieu uyen
Anh chàng mặt phị, mắc bệnh thần kinh, ế vợ và viết những câu chuyện buồn nẫu ruột, lại cho ra một quyển tiểu thuyết lịch sử làm người ta trố lòi cả mắt vì sự kì vĩ và đồ sộ của nó. Một lịch sử được tái hiện với âm mưu và máu, cùng với những biểu tượng và ẩn dụ tràn đầy tác phẩm. Một tuyệt tác về về cái ác và chiến tranh.
Bóng dáng lộng lẫy cùng với “đạo đức” và “sự dâm loạn” của Emma Bovary đã làm nên tên tuổi của Flaubert. Thế nhưng cuộc sống thượng lưu ở Paris đã làm người ta quên bẵng đi cuộ
Flaubert goes on a radically different track here - after the astonishing success of Madame Bovary he goes for an Orientalist tragedy on the ruin of Carthage.

As expected, he put an astonishing amount of work into this - he's read his Polybius, and written astonishing (exaggerated?) accounts of the Carthaginian religion. Lots of description of destruction and savagery and war. The devourer-god, Moloch. That alone makes it worth a read.

It's as though Flaubert has constructed an elaborate sand cas
I'm only half-way through this time, but this is one of the most excrutiating, unreadable 'great' novels ... partly due to Flaubert's triumph in stripping everything down to its material essence, avoiding all character psychology, and prompting all of us to ask why we are reading. It is essentially a prose poem that deals with a violent, decadent subject (3rd century Carthage) in a style that for the most part eschews psychology and heroics for multi-layered imagery. Cruelty and conquest are eve ...more
Note: I generally go for more modern translations for the classics, but for this I went with the public domain one, and it was fine.

Gustave Flaubert, generally only known for Madame Bovary managed to show that he wasn't just a one trick pony with Salammbo, a historical fiction novel set in the First Punic War. This isn't for the fainthearted as there is plenty acts of torture, cannibalism, and the like. However, in amongst all that the romantic tale behind the story works out pretty well too, so
Justin Evans
A bit of a rollicking tale, especially unexpected from Flaubert; it has the feeling of an epic poem, or a medieval romance. That's probably the best way to judge it: not dealing with deep characters (although Spendius is chilling); not interested in a perfectly coherent, driven plot (although there's plenty of action); but filled with asides, descriptions and repetitions. But it's also 'realistic', in the sense of packed with detail; this clashes in an interesting way with the characters' speech ...more
☽ Moon Rose ☯
The unerring desire of possession can drive one to the extremities of human passion. The nauseous affliction its imprinting in the mind wildly displaces reason with the abject principle of resolute blindness that moves the beholder from the clear insights of logic to the sheer antipode form of its utmost extremity as the evil eye can turn the radiance of love into the most violent ray of hate, or of wanting to preserve life and its beauty into the bleakness of its own sudden death and of divine ...more
Before Rome squared off with the Gauls, Greeks, Persians, Germans and Huns, it had to grapple with the maritime superpower of Carthage in the Punic Wars. The Carthaginians were a fascinating blend of nascent capitalists, rampant imperialists and crazy cultists who employed vast armies of mercenaries from all over Europe, Asia and Africa to fight their battles, led by the famous Barca clan (who produced the great general Hannibal, not Lecter). This story is set after the First Punic War when Cart ...more
Like most, I read this book because it immediately follows his ultra-famous Madame Bovary, and, like many, I was disappointed at what I discovered, given the author's reputation.

This is a book of descriptive enumerations, not the deep psychological insight that I was hoping for after reading Bovary. The lists are endless, many taking whole paragraphs: monetary systems and coinage, countries and peoples, religous rites and paraphernalia, architectural details, military fitments and styles, and mu
Philippe Bernard
Une oeuvre hors-norme, décalée. Comment Flaubert, qui plus qu'un autre a nourri son inspiration de l'air du temps, a-t-il pu s'aventurer six ans durant dans un territoire si lointain, exotique et méconnu que nous avons presque l'impression aujourd'hui de lire de l'heroic-fantasy? Une écriture incroyablement moderne et cinématographique. La description des batailles et des charges d'éléphants carthaginois n'a rien à envier à celle qu'on peut visionner dans le Seigneur des Anneaux par exemple. Cru ...more
A curious retelling of a mercenary revolt that took place over 2200 years ago. The flowery, hallucinogenic style used to exoticize the "East" (here, North Africa under some Middle Eastern religious influence) is similar to that of Rudyard Kipling's Kim except that the plot is actually comprehensible. There's cannibalism, child sacrifice, and magic superstition. My analysis of a minor character, the eunuch high priest Schahabarim, is posted to Disruptive Dissertation.

In The Isles of the Princes,
I have always been fascinated by this book and especially Salammbo. I found the book at a very low price so I bought it and began to read it. At the beginning, I didn't really recognise Flaubert's style but the more I read the more I get used to this different book. I'm a bit disappointed that the apparitions of Salammbo are rare but maybe she will come more further in the story as I haven't finished it :)
I have to say that the descriptions offer charming ( even though violent) visions of Cathag
Conan = Pussy
Klassizismus = RAWCK ON!

Ich würde es als Roman zu Eugène Delacroix Malerei bezeichnen. Es hat diese bizarre Mischung aus der präzisen Romanpsychologie der Zeit, krankhaft genauer Recherche, purer Exotizismus und eine gewisse knallige, abweisende Schilderung.

Atm sind mir die meisten Dinge entfallen, die ich mal zum Thema Kultur des 19. Jhds wusste und hier gerade passen wären. Auf jeden Fall lesenswert, wenn man Fantasy im Stile von Conan mag.

Der Roman wurde mir durch ein Buch zum Th
Anyone who thought Flaubert was dull based on being assigned Madame Bovary in High School really, really ought to read this. (Madame Bovary is lovely too, of course, but it doesn't have nearly as much intrigue, torture, battles, human sacrifice, cannibalism, or leprous evil oligarchs with rotting flesh).
"I would give the demi-ream of notes I've written during the last five months and the ninety-eight volumes I've read, to be, for only three seconds, really moved by the passion of my heroes."- Flaubert on writing Salammbo
أقمار المسيري
إن الزمن.. عصري الذي أعيشه يمللني بطريقة عجيبة.. فمن أية جهة أتيته لا أرى فيه أكثر من بؤس وكلمات.. كلمات.. وأية كلمات!!. غوستاڤ فلوبير

أموات ! كلكن أموات ! لن تعدن فتسمعن صوتي كما كنتن تسمعنه فتطعن لي في الامس الغابر . سلامبو ، غوستاڤ فلوبير

سأحمل معي طلسم بيتي وعبقريته ، حيتي السوداء الراقدة على أوراق السدر ! سأخرج صفيراً من شفتي فتلتحق بي ، سلامبو ، غوستاڤ فلوبير

كثيراً ما تهب م
I loved it--but then I would. It's everything I look for in a book: in-depth, ornate descriptions of places, mythology, people and settings. It also does not hold back, but shows the depravity of war and drags you along, almost unwilling at times, as those on both sides grow more and more desperate and create greater atrocities in the hope that they make it out alive. (word of warning: as it is an old book, the language used to describe people of different ethnicities is not favourable to most a ...more
أقمار المسيري
إن الزمن.. عصري الذي أعيشه يمللني بطريقة عجيبة.. فمن أية جهة أتيته لا أرى فيه أكثر من بؤس وكلمات.. كلمات.. وأية كلمات!!. غوستاڤ فلوبير

أموات ! كلكن أموات ! لن تعدن فتسمعن صوتي كما كنتن تسمعنه فتطعن لي في الامس الغابر . سلامبو ، غوستاڤ فلوبير

سأحمل معي طلسم بيتي وعبقريته ، حيتي السوداء الراقدة على أوراق السدر ! سأخرج صفيراً من شفتي فتلتحق بي ، سلامبو ، غوستاڤ فلوبير

كثيراً ما تهب م
Flaubert hace aquí de guía en un museo dedicado a rarezas cartaginesas.
Compré este libro en homenaje a mi profesora de historia en el instituto, que lo adoraba. Y como ella me contagió en cierto modo el amor por el mundo clásico, pensé que yo también lo adoraría. Pues no. Mi edición, la de Cátedra, en su sesuda introducción, viene a decir muy sutilmente lo que pensaría cualquier lector moderno, que esta novela está pasada de moda. Demasiado preciosista y cultureta. Parnasiana, muy parnasiana. Y
Flaubert's powerful capacity for physical detail (sometimes here bordering on the grotesque) comes across in this fast-paced historical novel about Carthage's life-or-death struggle against its own mercenary army. Flaubert's customary flare for psychological detail and complexity, however, is nowhere to be seen. Edward Said would have had a field day with this work, if he ever addressed himself to it, as characters are little more than stereotypes of the "eastern mind". Too bad. It's more the ki ...more
Danette Baltzer
Flaubert's 'Salammbo' is a classic tale of adventure and romance. Introduced to me primarily as a romance, I was unprepared for the grittiness of war the love story is set amidst. As a result I probably did not enjoy it as much as I might have. But this is not to diminish the importance of the book nor to say that Flaubert writing is not captivating. The historical detail is brilliant and the action is nonstop. Young men in particular are going to enjoy this sweeping tale of passion and war. Thi ...more
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Gustave Flaubert (December 12, 1821 – May 8, 1880) is counted among the greatest Western novelists. He was born in Rouen, Seine-Maritime, in the Haute-Normandie Region of France.

Flaubert's curious modes of composition favored and were emphasized by these peculiarities. He worked in sullen solitude, sometimes occupying a week in the completion of one page, never satisfied with what he had composed,
More about Gustave Flaubert...
Madame Bovary Sentimental Education Three Tales Bouvard and Pecuchet The Temptation of St. Antony

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“C'était à Mégara, faubourg de Carthage, dans les jardins d'Hamilcar.” 3 likes
“Through the forest he pursued the she-monster whose tail coiled over the dead leaves like a silver stream; and he came to a meadow where women, with the hindquarters of dragons, stood around a great fire, raised on the tips of their tails. The moon shone red as blood in a pale circle and their scarlet tongues, formed like fishing harpoons, stretched out, curling to the edge of the flame.” 3 likes
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