Novel Splendeurs et misères des courtisanes Honoré de Balzac (1838)
The Houmeau district is once again at the center of the story of Honoré de Balzac's Splendeurs et misères des courtisanes.
District of l'Houmeau Angouleme
Houmeau district in Angoulême by JLPC. Wikimedia.

Although my father was a simple pharmacist in Houmeau, I still enter there.

Honoré de Balzac

Lucien de Rubempré, a key character in La Comédie Humaine and thus in Splendeurs et misères des courtisanes, is originally from the lower part of Angoulême, and more precisely from the Houmeau district where ships used to load goods to sail to the ocean. Lucien de Rubempré’s father was a pharmacist in Houmeau and his modest origins are repeatedly underlined by the author. Pampered by his mother, he also tries to buy back her title of nobility, in order to make it his own, in Splendeurs et misères des courtisanes.

The place given to Angoulême in Lost Illusions and Splendeurs et misères des courtisanes is explained by the strong impression that the city made on Honoré de Blazac during his three visits. His attachment to the city is also related to his friendship with Zulma Carraud, the wife of Major Carraud, then inspector of the powder factory, of which only two buildings remain today. The central square has been named after the writer.


Splendeurs et misères des courtisanes is composed of four parts.


One of the main districts of Angoulême, l’Houmeau played an important role during the Middle Ages.

Built around a port, l’Houmeau linked the city to the sea. For a long time, it saw the transit of textiles, salt, stones and various goods bound for the whole kingdom of France.

Described by Honoré de Balzac, the place finally gave up its first function in 1853 with the construction of the railroad linking Bordeaux to Paris and passing through Angoulême.

L’Houmeau suffered another ordeal during the Second World War, when it was bombed by the Allies. It is only in 2009 that the city council decides to rehabilitate the district to make it the historical heart of the city.

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The Fantrippers Buying Board

Intégrale Ric Hochet - Tome 16

Intégrale Ric Hochet - Tome 16

Publisher’s summary: Has our favorite detective finally found a worthy adversary? Sinister is a super-criminal who knows the Hochet family a little too well. After having made Richard, the father, disappear, he attacks Ric, whom he drags with him into the limbo of the beyond. But the corpses do not resurface one album later to attack the art market… As a bonus, our hero will have to defend the FIBD of Angoulême against a mysterious killer! So many tangled mysteries, which have made the success of “Ric Hochet” for so many years…

This book consists of the following titles:

  • «La Main de la Mort»
  • «Crime sur Internet»
  • «Le Jeu de la Potence»
  • «BD Meurtres»
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By Gilles Rolland

Thursday, March 24, 2022

Passionné de cinéma, de rock and roll, de séries TV et de littérature. Rédacteur de presse et auteur des livres Le Heavy Metal au cinéma, Paroles de fans Guns N' Roses, Paroles de fans Rammstein et Welcome to my Jungle : 100 albums rock et autres anecdotes dépareillées. Adore également voyager à la recherche des lieux les plus emblématiques de la pop culture.

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