When Emma meets Lucia: “Madame Bovary” goes to the opera | Opera

Gustave Flaubert published his first novel, Madame Bovaryas a group of magazine on La Revue de Paris from October 1 to December 15 His noble marriage, longing for the kind of happiness a woman should have … in a novel. The author tells us that one of the stories of his heroine, Emma Bovary, was inspired by Sir Walter Scott’s. Lammermoor’s brideinstead of Donizetti Lucia di Lammermoor has been established.

As Flaubert observes Emma in chapter nine: “Then she remembered the heroines of the books she had read, and the legions of these prostitutes began to sing aloud to her memory. of the sisters who fascinated him. He became himself, as it were, a real part of these thoughts, and he realized the romantic dream of his youth when he saw himself in of this kind of romantic woman he was jealous of. The authorities put Flaubert on trial in January 1857, and he was released in February. Nothing like a bad trial to boost book sales. When it appeared a free voice that April, Madame Bovary become an instant best seller. One hundred and sixty years later, that’s what the legend is all about. In addition to its importance in the history of the novel, it is an excellent story told with a sense of relatability.

By the time we get to chapter 15, Emma has harbored two hidden love interests from her husband, Charles Bovary, a provincial doctor. The first – for the law student Léon – remains (for the moment) in the realm of thought; The second – for the landowner Rodolphe – was very physical, and when he ended their relationship, Emma fell ill and died. When he recovered, Charles decided to comfort him by taking him to the opera in nearby Rouen, to see the (fictional) tenor Lagardy in Lucia di Lammermoor – or, while they are in France, Lucie de Lammermoor. It was a natural choice for Flaubert; One of the greatest operas produced at the time, it also tells the story of a woman whose marriage honors the idea.


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