Émile Gaboriau  

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Émile Gaboriau (November 9, 1832 - September 28, 1873), was a French writer, novelist, and journalist, and a pioneer of modern detective fiction.


Gaboriau was born in the small town of Saujon, Charente-Maritime. He became a secretary to Paul Féval, and after publishing some novels and miscellaneous writings, found his real gift in L'Affaire Lerouge (1866). The book, which was Gaboriau's first detective novel, introduced an amateur detective. It also introduced a young police officer named Monsieur Lecoq, who was the hero in three of Gaboriau's later detective novels. Monsieur Lecoq was based on a real-life thief turned police officer, Eugène François Vidocq (1775-1857), whose memoirs, Les Vrais Mémoires de Vidocq, mixed fiction and fact. It may also have been influenced by the villainous Monsieur Lecoq, one of the main protagonists of Féval's Les Habits Noirs book series. The book was published in the Pays and at once made his reputation. Gaboriau gained a huge following, but when Arthur Conan Doyle created Sherlock Holmes, Monsieur Lecoq's international fame declined. The story was produced on the stage in 1872. A long series of novels dealing with the annals of the police court followed, and proved very popular. Gaboriau died in Paris of pulmonary apoplexy.


  • L'Affaire Lerouge (1866) - The Widow Lerouge
  • Le Crime d'Orcival (1867) - The Mystery of Orcival
  • Le Dossier No. 113 (1867) - File No. 113
  • Les Esclaves de Paris (1868, 2 vol.) - Slaves of Paris
    • Caught in the Net
    • The Champdoce Mystery
  • Monsieur Lecoq (1869, 2 vol.)
    • L'Enquete - The Inquiry
    • L'Honneur du Nom - The Honor of the Name
  • La Vie infernale (1870, 2 vol.) - The Count's Millions
    • The Count's Millions
    • Baron Trigault's Vengeance
  • La Clique doree (1871) - The Clique of Gold / The Gilded Clique
  • La Degringolade (1872) - Catastrophe / The Downward Path
  • La Corde au cou (1873) - Rope Around His Neck / In Peril of His Life / In Deadly Peril
  • L'Argent des Autres (1874) - Other People's Money, A Great Robbery
  • Le Petit Vieux des Batignolles (1876) - The Little Old Man of Batignolles

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