”Salammbô" is a historical novel by Gustave Flaubert in which he skillfully interweaved historical and fictional characters. Set in Carthage in the 3rd century BC, it describes the revolt of the mercenaries who had fought for Carthage during the First Punic War (261-241 BC) but hadn’t received their money for it. Along with describing the bloody Carthaginian conflict, it also tells of the fictional love story between the beautiful Salammbô - the grand priestess of Tanith and daughter of Hamilcar - and Matho - the leader of the Libyan mercenaries.
The indiscriminate violence and sensuality of the novel gave rise to a startling number of plays, operas, and film adaptations, including an unfinished opera by Modest Mussorgsky, a silent film by Pierre Marodon, and a play by Charles Ludlam.
Gustave Flaubert (1821-1880) was a highly influential French novelist listed among the greatest representatives of realism. He is best known for his scandalous masterpiece "Madame Bovary" (1857) which is considered as a watershed not only in 19th-century realism but in world literature. His works „Salammbô" (1862), „A Sentimental Education" (1869), and „The Memoirs of a Madman" (1838) are just few examples of his literary craftsmanship. A complete perfectionist in his writing, Flaubert has been admired for his aesthetic ideals and his work influenced the development of the novel in Europe, America, and around the globe.
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