Victor Hugo, "The Man Who Laughs": a summary

The article will talk about the brief content of "The Man Who Laughs." We will review the main points of the story, talk a little about the author and his idea, and also examine the essence of this work.

about the author

Victor Hugo is the author of The Man Who Laughs. He is a French writer, playwright and even a prose writer. This man is rightly considered a key figure in French romanticism. The future word genius was born in the city with the romantic name Besançon. During his childhood, he often changed his place of residence because of parents moving. I visited Marseilles, the Elbe, Italy, Corsica, Madrid. In his youth he loved to learn and arrange various receptions. In adult years, he wrote and was fond of theatrical art.

Beginning of the story

A summary of “The Man Who Laughs” will begin with a prologue. The reader is introduced to a man named Ursus, which means “bear” in Latin.He travels with the wolf, whom he called Gomo, which means "man."

By nature, Ursus is a very versatile person. It hides a philosopher, healer, poet, street reveler, speaker, etc. He travels from place to place with a wolf and a small cart. Homo he uses not only as a plowing force, but also as a full-fledged creature. Homo can speak to the guests, collect money with a mug in his mouth. Once Ursus wrote a good play, thanks to which the people trust him and begin to buy various drugs.the man who laughs is a summary

Character of the protagonist

Victor Hugo in “The Man Who Laughs” (a brief summary we consider in the article) describes in detail the character of the hero. This man was a bit gloomy and deep in his thoughts. He had his own philosophy, which inspired negative. Ursus laughed quite rarely, but even if it did, his laugh was bitter. He hated aristocrats, believing that their power was pure evil. Despite this, Ursus actively pretended to be a zealous admirer of this class. There were even inscriptions on his cart confirming this.

He always tried to avoid trouble, although it was a time of persecution of the comprachicos.If earlier each aristocrat had a dwarf or a jester, now it was not so easy to find him. Comprachicos were called scoundrels who were allowed by conscience to buy healthy children and disfigure their appearance surgically. But still they were not averse to finding freaks since childhood, who were ugly and funny anyway. Very often, these people were contacted to forget about the undesired heir. In this case, fraudsters considered themselves Catholics and zealously defended the faith.


So, we begin the summary of the book "The Man Who Laughs." The events of the winter of 1690 unfold before us. On the street cold January evening. An old ship moored in a small bay on which people are loaded. Among all the figures, one is clearly different, as it belongs to the child. The boy in tatters is going to follow the rest of the people, but at the last moment the leader drops a plate that served as a ladder. The ship quickly leaves, and the boy is left alone to stand in the cold in Portland Bay.

He managed to get out of a deep bay with steep slopes. As a result, in front of him stretched a huge area, covered with snow-white snow.He did not know what to do, and therefore turned in the first turn. It was the right decision, since it went in the direction of the British Isles. He walked for a long time, until he came across a gallows with a corpse. The dead was covered with a thick layer of resin. This was done on purpose so that the body could last longer and be a terrifying example for the rest. The child was very cold, and he saw that his shoes were lying around the corpse, but he did not dare to take who laughs

He looked at the corpse for a long time, since it was impossible to tear his eyes away from this terrible sight. He was distracted by a strong gust of wind that swung his body sharply. It scared the boy, and he abruptly ran from there. He managed to safely cross a rather dangerous place, namely the Portland Isthmus, represented by steep cliffs. Finally, the child saw smoke in front, which meant that there were people nearby.

The fate of the ship

We continue to review the summary content of the chapters of the “Man Who Laughs” by the fact that the above vessel has overtaken a blizzard. People have long struggled with the natural force, putting all their efforts. But it turned out to be in vain, because after the elements subsided, it turned out that most of the comprachicos died, along with the captain. In addition, the ship was pierced and sank.After the survivors realized that they could not get out on their own, since the land was far away and the ship was on the verge of a flood, they decided to write a confession. They all signed the document and put it in a bottle, the neck of which was carefully salted. The bottle was thrown into the sea with hope in their eyes.

On my way

So, the content of “The Man Who Laughs” is gradually revealed to us. The blizzard, by the way, was raging not only on the sea, but also on land. The boy walked through the snow, trying to walk along barely noticeable human tracks. Saved him that in the distance, he heard some sounds. Walking, he found a dead woman, near whom a frozen but still alive baby was crying. The boy decided to take it with him, previously wrapped in his jacket.

Finally, from the content of the novel “The Man Who Laughs,” we learn that the boy finds a small town. He notices snow-covered roofs and light in the windows. The child enters the city, which is still filling the last hours. He starts knocking on different doors, looking for heat and a corner, but for some reason no one opens him. The content of the book "The Man Who Laughs" continues with the fact that the child finds a wasteland on which Ursus settled with his wolf and cart.the man who laughs Victor Hugo

A meeting

The boy knocked on the house, almost no longer hoping that someone would open it.At this time, Ursus was going to have dinner, and his food, by the way, was rather scarce. He absolutely did not want to share with anyone else, but the council did not allow him to leave the child in the cold. He let the boy in, then dressed him in warm and dry clothes. He also gave him his dinner, hoping to have a little more milk. However, it turned out that under the jacket the guy had a baby hidden. Naturally, he got the milk.

The next morning the man realized that the baby was a blind girl, and the boy was terribly disfigured - an expression of laughter froze on his face.

Meet Lord Klencharly

We continue consideration of the brief content of "The Man Who Laughs" by Victor Hugo. Readers are introduced to Lord Linnaeus Klencharly, whom the author calls "a living fragment of the past." Like many people, he recognized the rights of the republic, but did not go over to the side of the monarchy after the death of Cromwell. In his heart he remained an ardent Republican, and therefore he had no place in society. He went to a conscious exile at Lake Geneva. In England, he remained a lover. A beautiful girl who did not miss her and became the mistress of King Charles II.Her illegitimate son, David Derry-Moir, grew up and began to build his nest at court. For a while, Lord Linnay was completely forgotten.


It is impossible to retell “A Man Who Laughs” without deepening intrigues at the court, therefore we dive a little into this topic. Though Klencharly was forgotten, but the party and the title were left to him. In Switzerland, he married. Soon a son was born, which means the legal heir. James II, after he ascended the throne, decided to correct the mistake of the previous king. Klencharly himself had already died a natural death. Interestingly, his rightful heir just disappeared. Simultaneously with this, David became the Lord Peer, who in addition received a beautiful bride and the king’s illegitimate daughter, Josiana.the man who laughs the content of the novel

We continue to retell a summary of "The Man Who Laughs" by Hugo. The plot of the novel takes us a few years. At this time, the legitimate daughter of the king, Anna becomes the English queen. It was known that David and Josiana were in love, and the whole court admired the refinement of their relationship. But at the same time, none of them were in a hurry to play the wedding, as both valued their freedom too much.Note that if the girl was 23 years old, then David by this time turned 43 years old.

The Duchess was rather depraved, despite the fact that she remained a virgin. She would have long been overgrown with lovers, if she could find decent ones. Only her own pride held her back. Josiana was proud that she was the sister of Queen Anne. But the stupid and not very beautiful queen hardly bore the society of her beautiful sister.

David could have more fun. He loved to take part in the cruel games of the aristocrats, although he himself was not a cruel person by nature. Note that he first began to compensate the victims for the damage. He also liked to look at boxing fights or cockfights. Often dressed as a commoner, to walk around London, and talk to ordinary people. He was even known there under the name Jim-Jack-Tom.

The work “The Man Who Laughs” by Victor Hugo in the second part of the book tells that the queen, josian and david were watching each other To do this, they hired the same person under the name Barkilfedro, who each reported on others.Initially, he was a servant of King James, but then got access to the chambers thanks to Josiana. She later arranged him for a position that actually existed in the English Admiralty. He had to uncork the ocean bottles. However, Barkilfedro was very cunning, although he seemed like a sweet and courteous man. He hated Josiana, who commanded him carelessly and coldly, and was preparing to deal her a crushing blow. As we know, any evil must be avenged.the content of the book is a man who laughs

Our old friends

A summary of “The Man Who Laughs” continues to retell and return to Ursus and his children. So, once David, in order to entertain his bride, he decided to show her Gwynplaine - that same boy with a disfigured face. He showed the girl Deyu - the little one, wrapped in Gwynplaine's jacket. She grew up and turned into a beautiful girl. Ursus adopted guys.

For more than 15 years, they traveled along the roads and amused people, who paid very well for Gwynplaine's deformity. The guy was 24 years old, and he was pretty smart, because Ursus gave him all his knowledge. 16-year-old Deya and Gwynplaine were in love with each other. Their senses were pure and pure.They have a new green van. Wolf replaced the donkey. Ursus was even able to hire two gypsies to participate in performances and help around the house.


Gwynplaine went along with Ursus to London, where they continued to show performances. They settled in a small hotel whose yard was turned into a stage. Very quickly, they ravaged the local booths. They even filed a lawsuit against them, but Ursus managed to resolve everything even to his advantage. The amateur of these street actors was Tom-Jim-Jack.

One day a very beautiful woman, who had a noble background, came to see the “man who laughs”. Gwynplaine's ugliness really hit her, and for some reason she decided that only he was worthy of becoming her first lover. Note that the young guy was also struck by the beauty of the woman. A few days later, when he was walking around the city, a page-boy with a letter from the duchess approached him. After reading it, Gwynplaine realized the impulse and desire of the Duchess, but did not change his beloved.

At the same time, Day was weakening every day. Ursus thought she had a bad heart. Any shock could destroy it.In one day, the womb of the womb came to the actor, who served as a modern policeman. The man whom the rod touched had to follow the stubborn bearer without complaint and without question. On that day, Gwynplaine was taken away, but Dey did not understand anything, since she was blind. Ursus decided to hide it from her, if her misfortune did not destroy her.Victor Hugo is a man who laughs content


Ursus followed the "man who laughs." He was taken to prison, but nobody appeared there overnight. The young man was taken to a dungeon where a man was tortured. He was crucified, and a lead plate pressed down on him. Seeing the young man, the man began to laugh terribly. Immediately, the judge stood up and proclaimed that Gwynplaine was Lord Fermen of Clencharly, a peer, a marquis and a baron.

This all happened according to the plan of Barkilfedro, who received a bottle with a note. There, the comprachicos confessed what they did to the boy, and who he really was. The order for this was given by King James II. The child was disfigured by someone named Hardquanon. It was he who was tortured in the dungeon. The queen and the cunning Barkilphedro realized that Josiana was engaged not to Lord Clencharly himself, but to his title, which means she would have to marry this freak.Two accomplices were beside themselves with the happiness that they managed to take revenge on the beautiful Josiane.


The next day, the guy woke up in the palace. He explained how abruptly his life will change now. At first he wanted to visit Ursus and send him money, but he was not allowed to. Barkilfedro said that he himself would take him money. All night the young man reveled in the resulting power and money, but only in the morning remembered Dee.

Ursus returned home and decided to pretend that Gwynplaine was with them, but he was not able to deceive Day. Later came Barkilphedro, who declared that the young man was dead, and they needed to leave England immediately.

Gwynplaine wandered around the palace, wanting to find a way out of it. As a result, he found a luxury bath in which a beautiful woman slept. She awoke, and the boy recognized the duchess. She began to seduce in every way the "man who laughs," and he gave up. But then suddenly a letter arrived that Josiana would have to become his wife. This cooled her fervor to the new toy, and she withdrew.content man who laughs

Soon gathered lords, before which Gwynplaine was to speak. However, in the end he was laughed at, although he tried to tell about the unfortunate people of England.He was well received by David, but in his speeches the guy touched his mother, and David challenged him to a duel. Gwynplaine decided to flee from London. He was looking for Ursus and Daya, but they were not anywhere. Deciding to commit suicide, he felt that someone was licking his hand. It was Homo. He brought the boy to Dee and Ursus. The girl was quickened a little, but died of the shock at the hands of a guy. He was terribly angry. Out of grief, he walked to the edge of the deck ...

When he awoke, Ursus did not see anyone near him, except for Homo, who looked at him with plaintive eyes.

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