Petrus Borel

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Petrus Borel
Born26 June 1809
DiedJuly 14, 1859(1859-07-14) (aged 50)
MovementRomantic movement

Joseph-Pierre Borel d'Hauterive, known as Petrus Borel (26 June 1809 – 14 July 1859), was a French writer of the Romantic movement.[1]


Born at Lyon on 26 June 1809, the twelfth of fourteen children of an ironmonger, he studied architecture in Paris but abandoned it for literature. Nicknamed le Lycanthrope ("wolfman"), and the centre of the circle of Bohemians in Paris,[1] he was noted for his extravagant and eccentric style of writing, foreshadowing Surrealism. He was not commercially successful, and was eventually found a minor civil service post by his friend Théophile Gautier.[2] He is considered to be one of the poète maudits, like Aloysius Bertrand, or Alice de Chambrier.

Borel died at Mostaganem in French Algeria on 14 July 1859.[1]

He was the subject of a biography by Enid Starkie, Petrus Borel: The Lycanthrope (1954).[citation needed]


  • Rhapsodies (Poems, 1832)
  • Champavert, contes immoraux (Short stories, 1833)
  • L'Obélisque de Louqsor (1836)
  • Robinson Crusoe (Translation, 1836)
  • Comme quoi Napoléon n'a jamais existé (1838)
  • Madame Putiphar (Novel, 1839)
  • Le Trésor de la Caverne d'Arcueil (Novella, 1927)


  1. ^ a b c Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Borel, Petrus" . Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.
  2. ^ Starkie, Enid (1954). Petrus Borel, the lycanthrope: his life and times. Internet Archive. London, Faber and Faber.

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