Raul Pompeia

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Raul Pompeia
Raul Pompeia.jpg
BornRaul d'Ávila Pompeia
(1863-05-12)12 May 1863
Angra dos Reis, Rio de Janeiro, Empire of Brazil
Died25 December 1895(1895-12-25) (aged 32)
Rio de Janeiro City, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Pen nameRapp
Occupation novelist, short story writer, chronicler
Literary movement Realism; Naturalism; Impressionism
Notable works O Ateneu

Raul d'Ávila Pompeia (April 12, 1863 – December 25, 1895) was a Brazilian novelist, short story writer and chronicler. He is famous for the Impressionist romance O Ateneu .


He is patron of the 33rd chair of the Brazilian Academy of Letters.


Pompeia was born in 1863, to Antônio d'Ávila Pompeia and Rosa Teixeira Pompeia. As a young man, he entered the Colégio Abílio, run by the Baron of Macaúbas, Abílio César Borges, where he was a good student, and the editor of school journal O Archote. In 1879, he was transferred to Colégio Pedro II, where he wrote his first book, Uma Tragédia no Amazonas.

In 1881 he moved to São Paulo in order to graduate in Law, where he was influenced by the Abolitionist and Republican ideals, and befriended Abolitionist Luís Gama. He wrote for many journals of São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, frequently under pen name Rapp, but he had many others, such as Pompeu Stell, Um moço do povo, Lauro, Fabricius, Raul D., Raulino Palma. He published his book Canções Sem Metro and the novel As Joias da Coroa in the Jornal do Commercio.

After being reproved in 1883, he moved to Recife and there he concluded his Law course. Returning once more to Rio, he wrote his masterpiece O Ateneu in 1888.

After the Lei Áurea was proclaimed, Pompeia dedicated himself exclusively to the Republicanism. And after the republic was proclaimed in Brazil, he became Mythology teacher in the Escola Nacional de Belas Artes and director of the National Library of Brazil, being named for both positions by Brazilian president Floriano Peixoto. However, as a die-hard florianista, he was eventually fired from his post by President Prudente de Morais, towards whom he was charged with disrespect in a speech he made at the burial of Floriano Peixoto, who had died untimely shortly after the end of his presidential term. He had already been personally slandered for his allegedly closet homosexuality — something which led him to challenge his former friend, the poet Olavo Bilac, to a duel in 1892; he had also broken other friendships in the same resounding fashion. Eventually, he suffered a fatal breakdown: after being slandered for his Floriano speech in a piece by journalist Luís Murat entitled "A Madman in the Cemetery", feeling himself scorned everywhere, he committed suicide by shooting himself on the chest with a pistol on Christmas, 1895. [1]



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  1. Alfredo Bosi, História concisa da literatura brasileira. São Paulo: Cultrix, 2006, ISBN   85-316-0189-4, 183. Available at .See, also

Further reading