The Hunchback of Notre-Dame



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London: Folio Society


‘It is three hundred and forty-eight years, six months and nineteen days ago today that the citizens of Paris were awakened by the pealing of all the bells in the triple precincts of the City, the University and the Town.’ So begins Victor Hugo’s novel of medieval Paris, Notre Dame de Paris; more commonly known as The Hunchback of Notre-Dame. First published in 1831, the backdrop of the love story between Esmeralda and Quasimodo is the famous Gothic cathedral. Hugo (1802-1885) was a preservationist who was vitriolic towards ‘vandals’ who knocked down old buildings in the name of progress. Indeed, the language of architecture permeates the novel. The British artist Quentin Blake (b. 1932) designed this striking cover image.


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Victor Hugo, “The Hunchback of Notre-Dame,” | OUR Heritage, accessed October 1, 2022,