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The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco (1980)

14th century (143) 20th century (171) Christianity (99) crime (175) detective (116) fiction (2,659) Folio Society (100) historical (329) historical fiction (1,029) historical novel (148) history (217) Italian (404) Italian literature (428) Italy (519) library (119) literature (384) medieval (513) Middle Ages (411) monastery (194) monks (184) murder (169) mystery (1,180) novel (503) philosophy (109) read (222) religion (378) Roman (159) to-read (286) translation (132) unread (142)
  1. 183
    Foucault's Pendulum by Umberto Eco (ehines, hankreardon, Sensei-CRS)
    ehines: Surprised not to find this way up on Name of the Rose's rec list. FP is a much more recent period piece--the period is marked by 1968 as Name of the Rose's is marked by the emergence of the Franciscans. Well done look at the conspiratorial mindset.
  2. 81
    Dissolution by C. J. Sansom (Caramellunacy)
    Caramellunacy: Both feature ghastly murders in a monastery in a time of religious conflict and turmoil. The Name of the Rose (medieval Italy) is more philosophical, while Dissolution (Tudor England) is more of a straight-forward historical mystery. Both offer interesting insights into the political and religious issues of the times.… (more)
  3. 60
    Baudolino by Umberto Eco (aces)
  4. 72
    An Instance of the Fingerpost by Iain Pears (Booksloth)
  5. 83
    The Key to The Name of the Rose: Including Translations of All Non-English Passages by Adele J. Haft (Taphophile13)
  6. 61
    The Quincunx by Charles Palliser (Booksloth)
  7. 62
    The Dumas Club by Arturo Pérez-Reverte (mrcmrc)
  8. 64
    The Secret History by Donna Tartt (girlunderglass)
    girlunderglass: Two words: mystery + learned men (in The Name of the Rose, scholars of ecclesiastical books, in TSH of ancient Greek books)
  9. 32
    Ex-Libris by Ross King (roby72)
  10. 11
    The Athenian Murders by José Carlos Somoza (Booksloth)
  11. 11
    Zwischen Utopie und Wirklichkeit: Konstruierte Sprachen für die globalisierte Welt by Bayerische Staatsbibliothek München (gangleri)
  12. 22
    Doctor Mirabilis by James Blish (bertilak)
    bertilak: Both books have subplots about the controversial teachings of Joachim of Fiore.
  13. 11
    Shadow & Claw: The First Half of The Book of the New Sun by Gene Wolfe (LamontCranston)
  14. 11
    A Time to Keep Silence by Patrick Leigh Fermor (Laura400)
    Laura400: A brief book that relates this 20th Century author's travels to four monasteries, including extended stays in two French Benedictine monasteries. It is not a mystery or a book like "The Name of The Rose." But it is a nice meditation on a way of life that appears nearly unchanged over the centuries.… (more)
  15. 44
    My Name is Red by Orhan Pamuk (adithyajones, IamAleem)
    adithyajones: Both of them are historical mystery fiction but both are not plain vanilla whodunits rather serious books which looks at the life at that time in minute detail
  16. 11
    Interred with Their Bones by Jennifer Lee Carrell (KayCliff)
  17. 11
    Gospel by Wilton Barnhardt (Medellia)
  18. 12
    The Deptford Trilogy by Robertson Davies (ehines)
    ehines: These are very different books in some ways--Davies is much more of a character man than Eco, for instance. But for both of them, dealing with the issues coming out of 1968 loom large, and both of them have a lot of fun dealing with them.
  19. 01
    The Autumn of the Middle Ages by Johan Huizinga (posquacchera)
  20. 01
    Sword & Citadel: The Second Half of The Book of the New Sun by Gene Wolfe (LamontCranston)

(see all 24 recommendations)

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English (224)  Dutch (11)  Italian (11)  Spanish (10)  German (5)  French (4)  Catalan (2)  Portuguese (Portugal) (2)  Swedish (2)  Portuguese (1)  Danish (1)  Hebrew (1)  All languages (274)
Showing 1-5 of 224 (next | show all)
I've read this book several times and several different ways--as a detective novel, it is quite interesting, with lots of interesting side lines. But it's also a novel about theology, the corruptions of power, the nameless poor striving for something out of life, and more. Some of the digressions are long, but they're really interesting if you give them a chance. ( )
  ehines | Jul 7, 2014 |
http://www.bookcrossing.com/journal/5321439/

It took 3 tries but a long plane trip finally got this started. I couldn't figure out if it was a religious and philosophical treatise with a mystery thrown in or the other way around and I wasn't particularly interested in either one. The long diversions to one took away from the other and I remained pretty unengaged by the whole thing.
  amyem58 | Jul 3, 2014 |
I'm so proud of myself for finishing this! (Started it years ago, but didn't make it through.) And it really is a lot of fun, and informative at the same time. Gives a sense of really being there in this Medieval monastery. And of all the great books that haven't been passed down through the ages. ( )
  Heduanna | Jun 22, 2014 |
One of the toughest books I read so far. The first 100 pages are a challenge. He made it tough so that he could wean out the people who are really not interested :) Eco style of writing is so complicated and so rich with details! Phew. Learned a lot of things. Excellent read for people who like medieval ages Christian history and also whodunnit mysteries. Do not leave this book. After about 150 pages, it really picks up the tempo. Ends on an emotional note. ( )
  rampart_movie | May 30, 2014 |
Umberto Eco's first novel is certainly an extraordinary debut - the wealth of knowledge he has accumulated in semiotics and history is clearly on display. The plot is a relatively simple murder-mystery set in a mediaeval abbey, but it is so much more than that. In the pursuit of the truth, William - an English monk and scholar, and the noviciate narrator Adso search for meaning - the meaning of words, ideas, and symbols. Much like how Faust was offered a book that contained everything by the demon Mephistopheles, Eco offers the reader a book that contains digressions and debates on mediaeval heresy, the theological implications of laughter, and symbology to name just a few. Elements of Sherlock Holmes and Jose Louis Borges's The Library of Babel also permeate the story.

Eco presents The Name of the Rose as a found manuscript that he translated, and as such, continues the air of realism that surrounds the novel's setting: Eco ably recreates the often claustrophobic and yet deeply spiritual atmosphere of a mediaeval abbey. With many excerpts of Latin left untranslated (which as first proves somewhat of a hindrance), the Latin literary life of a monk at the time is also demonstrated.

The climax of the novel, though dramatic, is entirely derived by happenstance which seems to rob the novel and indeed the actions of William and Adso of a satisfactory triumph. Nevertheless, the climax does allow a final prolonged debate of the nature of mockery and laughter in religion, along with a digression on Aristotle.

Eco's first novel, then, is indeed a perfect post-modern work: "books always speak of other books, and every story tells a story that has already been told", the quote in the novel goes. And that is the story which The Name of the Rose tells, the story of books and of a search for meaning, meaning which Eco robs from the novel in its accidentally-arrived conclusion. ( )
  xuebi | May 30, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 224 (next | show all)
The Name of the Rose is a monumental exercise in mystification by a fun-loving scholar.
added by Shortride | editTime, Patricia Blake (Jun 13, 1983)
 
One may find some of the digressions a touch self-indulgent... yet be carried along by Mr. Eco's knowledge and narrative skills. And if at the end the solution strikes the reader as more edifying than plausible, he has already received ample compensation from a richly stocked and eminently civilized intelligence.
 

» Add other authors (73 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Eco, Umbertoprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Alexanderson, EvaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Čale, MoranaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Buffa, AiraTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Frýbort, ZdenìkTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Schifano, Jean-NoëlTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Tuin, JennyTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Velthoven, Th. vanTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Vlot, HennyTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Voogd, Pietha deTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Weaver, WilliamTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Костюкович… Е.secondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Naturally, a manuscript
Dedication
First words
In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
Quotations
Books are not made to be believed, but to be subjected to inquiry. When we consider a book, we mustn’t ask ourselves what it says but what it means.
There are magic moments, involving great physical fatigue and intense motor excitement, that produce visions of people known in the past. As I learned later from the delightful little book of the Abbé de Bucquoy, there are also visions of books as yet unwritten.
not infrequently, books speak of books: it is as if they spoke among themselves.
I have seen many other fragments of the cross in other churches. If all were genuine, our Lord’s torment could not have been on a couple of planks nailed together, but on an entire forest.
In my country [Austria], when you joke you say something and then you laugh very noisily so everyone shares in your joke. William [a Briton] laughed only when he said serious things, and remained very serious when he was presumably joking.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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This is a mystery wherein several deaths, presumed to be murders, are investigated by a former inquisitor, Brother William, at the request of the Abbot who wishes, for political reasons, to resolve the deaths and their attendant scandals before the arrival of a Papal delegation.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0156001314, Paperback)

“A brilliantly conceived adventure into another time” (San Francisco Chronicle) by critically acclaimed author Umberto Eco.

 

The year is 1327. Franciscans in a wealthy Italian abbey are suspected of heresy, and Brother William of Baskerville arrives to investigate. When his delicate mission is suddenly overshadowed by seven bizarre deaths, Brother William turns to the logic of Aristotle, the theology of Aquinas, and the empirical insights of Roger Bacon to find the killer. He collects evidence, deciphers secret symbols and coded manuscripts, and digs into the eerie labyrinth of the abbey (“where the most interesting things happen at night”) armed with a wry sense of humor and a ferocious curiosity.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:48:31 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

In 1327, finding his sensitive mission at an Italian abbey further complicated by seven bizarre deaths, Brother William of Baskerville turns detective.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 7 descriptions

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