Thursday, June 13, 2013

Raymond Poïvet’s “Salammbô”

“This fascinating story (Salammbô) of love and war, rich in heroic Carthaginian lore, set in glowing barbaric splendor, surrounded with an atmosphere of dreamy tropical warmth and local colour, and with its weird serpent scene and mysterious cults, has long been regarded as an untranslatable work.” — The Times, London.

Gustave Flaubert’s Salammbô; a Romance of Ancient Carthage, offered rich graphic possibilities for cartoonists of the bande dessinée. René Gahou seems to have been first with his 1943 adaptation in the magazine Cendrillon (HERE). Next was a disciple of Alex Raymond, Hal Foster and Burne Hogarth: a Frenchman named Raymond Poïvet (1910-99).

Poïvet’s Salammbô began in the French-Canadian Photo Journal on May 31, 1954, although I have not been able to discover just where it first appeared in Europe. Raymond Poïvet was the artist on the fantastic adventure Les Pionniers de L’Espérance, scripted by Roger Lécureux. C. Barbet, in his erudite comment on my second post on that strip notes that Philippe Druillet, who produced another comic Salammbô as a trilogy in 1980, was one of Poïvet’s students. 

A great selection of Salammbô illustré can be browsed HERE.

[3] August 21, 1954.
[4] October 23, 1954.
[5] October 23, 1954.
[6] October 16, 1954.
[7] June 26, 1954.
[8] American cartoonist Clare Victor Dwiggins illustration for Salammbô, 1904 (Akron, Ohio, St. Dunstan Society).
[9] Literary News, June 1886, ‘a monthly journal of current literature.’
[10] Raymond Poïvet’s signature.

1 comment:

  1. Jean-Paul GabillietJuly 14, 2013 at 10:57 AM

    Poïvet's "Salammbo" first appeared in issues 247 thru 265 of the French Communist Party-funded weekly Vaillant in 1950. It is quite funny in retrospect that the strip was subsequently picked up by a probably very Catholic Québécois title.