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Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Epitaph of a Small Winner by Machado de Assis ,. Though the grave has given Cubas the distance to examine his rather undistinguished life, it has not dampened his sense of humor. Paperback , pages. Published January 28th by Avon first published Rio de Janeiro Brazil.

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about Epitaph of a Small Winner , please sign up. Is this book in English? I thought it was excellent. See 2 questions about Epitaph of a Small Winner…. Lists with This Book. I pressed my silent grief to my breast and experienced a curious feeling, something that might be called the voluptuousness of misery. Memorize the phrase, reader; store it away, take it out and study it from time to time, and, if you do not succeed in understanding it, you may conclude that you have missed one of the most subtle emotions of which man is capable.

View all 37 comments. Published in , the novel has a unique style of short, erratic chapters shifting in tone and style.

Epitaph of a Small Winner

Instead of the clear and logical construction of a normal nineteenth-century realist novel, the novel makes use of surreal devices of metaphor and playful narrative construction. It is considered the first romance of the realist movement in Brazil. Cubas decides to tell his story starting from the end the passage of his death, caused by pneumonia , then taking "the greatest leap in this story", proceeding to tell the story of his life since his childhood.

The sharp and judicial eye of public opinion loses its power as soon as we enter the territory of death. I do not deny that it sometimes glances this way and examines and judges us, but we dead folk are not concerned about its judgment. You who still live, believe me, there is nothing in the world so monstrously vast as our indifference He constantly cajoles and engages the reader: Memorize this phrase, reader; store it away, take it out and study it from time to time, and, if you do not succeed in understanding it, you may conclude you have missed one of the most subtle emotions of which man is capable.

He likens life to the constant revision of a book: Let Pascal say man is a thinking reed. He is wrong; man is a thinking erratum. Each period in life is a new edition that corrects the preceding one and that in turn will be corrected by the next, until publication of the definitive edition, which the publisher donates to the worms.

He encourages the slow-reading, the consideration of his text by direct challenge: I am beginning to be sorry that I ever undertook to write this book. Not that it bores me; I have nothing else to do; indeed, it is a welcome distraction to eternity. But the book is tedious, it smells of the tomb, it has a rigor mortis about it; a serious fault, a yet a relatively small one, for the great defect of this book is you, reader.

And the slow-reading, the thoughtful consideration pays off. Camaraderie with the narrator unreliable, and frequently unlikeable, as he is wins us over. A constant source for highlighting and reflection. View all 57 comments. My Goodreads morning started on an emotional note today. I logged in and found a book recommendation by Ali, friendly comments from Dolors and Dustin, the surprised mention of m What more could I have asked for? The update feed however, presented a different and grim story altogether. A chilling reminder about the unfavorable direction this site is heading towards.

A site which is of, by and for the readers. Emotions surged up when I started imagining the what ifs scenarios and when you dedicate a huge chunk of your time to a virtual world, the happenings in that world whether positive or negative, affects you in incommensurable proportions.

Death is inevitable and melancholy is alright but what fun to have an everlasting smile pasted on your face while reading a book. Bras Cubas is dead but gifted us all these wonderful posthumous memoirs. Probably our narrator, a supposed alter-ego of our author was seeking a full-fledged creative freedom and wanted to break all the rules of writing that must be in practice during his time. The year was and Joaquim Maria Machado de Assis gave us this enchanting literary treat which surely holds the power to fascinate everyone of us in the present world of countless genres and sub-genres.

He had no other philosophy. I'm not saying that the university hadn't taught me some philosophical truths. But I'd only memorized the formulas, the vocabulary, the skeleton.


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I treated them as I had Latin: I put three lines from Virgil in my pocket, two from Horace, and a dozen moral and political locutions for the needs of conversation. I treated them the way I treated history and jurisprudence. I picked up the phraseology of all things, the shell, the decoration The truth in his humor, the irony in his innocent expressions and the wisdom in his reckless way of living life while he lived , will make you instantly fall in love with Cubas. The writer in him finds a way of telling us his witty intentions without sticking to conventions as apparent in the following quotes: What looks like a simple inventory here are notes I'd taken for a sad and banal chapter that I won't write.

I found in her a certain ethereal softness wedded to the polish of earthly forms—a vague expression and worthy of a chapter in which everything must be vague. Few tears, lots of laughs and random sighs - the life viewed from the other side of the grave is not sieved through the judgmental eyes of the people around us but comes across in an unadulterated form consists of memories collected, mistakes committed and admissions of guilt in the confession box of our hearts and in retrospect, the life appears to be beautiful.

Believe me, remembering is the least evil. No one should trust present happiness, there's a drop of Cain's drivel in it. With the passing of time and the end of rapture, then, yes, then perhaps it's possible really to enjoy, because between these two illusions the better one is the one that's enjoyed without pain.


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View all 38 comments. The reader, like his fellows, doubtless prefers action to reflection, and doubtless he is wholly in the right. So we shall get to it. However, I must advise that this book is written leisurely, with the leisureliness of a man no longer troubled by the flight of time; that is a work supinely philosophical, but of a philosophy wanting in uniformity, now austere, now playful, a thing that neither edifies nor destroys, neither inflames nor chills, and that is at once more of a pastime and less than The reader, like his fellows, doubtless prefers action to reflection, and doubtless he is wholly in the right.

However, I must advise that this book is written leisurely, with the leisureliness of a man no longer troubled by the flight of time; that is a work supinely philosophical, but of a philosophy wanting in uniformity, now austere, now playful, a thing that neither edifies nor destroys, neither inflames nor chills, and that is at once more of a pastime and less than a preachment.

The more I read, the more I come to understand that the trait I admire most in authors is not so much a matter of elegant prose, complex plots, characters that leap off the pages and make their home in your heads when the last page has been turned and the story has ended. Those are all very entertaining in their own right, but clever is as clever does, and rarely provokes long-lasting admiration in my mind. What I prefer is a simple matter of trust, belief, faith even if that is the direction your theological tendencies swing. Faith of the author in themselves, but more importantly, enough faith in their audience to lead them without expounding, carry them along in the pages without tending to their every need and pandering to their every expectation.

Some would disagree with me on that point. In fact, many would, all those folks who dislike books for "trying too hard" and "being too smart". Those who feel that the author did not adhere to the formula enough to guarantee formulaic enjoyment of the audience, and decry them for leading them out of their literary comfort zones and making them confront a strange beast of ink and paper.

Oftentimes they look at this weird creature and see something of themselves inside it. Sometimes this bothers them. More frequently than you'd expect, this scares them. So what does this have to do with this book here, you ask? I haven't quite figured it out myself, actually. At least, not at this exact point in time, as I type down these words in the middle of a coffee shop, the book itself on my right and a list of its quotes on the left.

That's why you're here. You're joining me on this journey, the goal of which is to find the purpose of conducting in the first place. What this book achieves is an astounding thing in this current age, but even moreso when one takes into account the year of publication. If you asked me which is more closely related to this particular specimen, I'd have to say TBK.

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But only in terms of the wealth of philosophical content, the exacting and measured analysis of the human condition, the grappling with questions of success, reputation, and mortality. TBK tells you a story in a sonorous tone, preaches from the pulpit of its well-deserved yet greatly intimidating authorial presence. This book hops up on the stand, poses with hand on hip, says a few words in a serious tone, then quickly hops down and invites you to the back table to ruminate and reminisce over a few choice bottles of the finest vintages. There is a man behind the curtain, and he doesn't bother to pretend that he doesn't know that you know that he knows it's there.

Instead, he welcomes you into his humble abode, and asks if you wish to hear a story. And trust me, reader, you really should say yes. Why do we want to hear this story from this author, one who breaks off from all conventions in serving us what cannot at all be deemed a novel? One hundred and sixty bits and pieces of one, perhaps, but how could that possibly flow as strongly and as soothingly as a single entity, one that admittedly breaks off into chapters but ensures that each chapter is a well-rounded stepping stone to the next?

Instead, we have this book, whose sections sometimes contain no more than a paragraph, a single sentence, even at some point a series of dots or ellipses? How can a story possibly be told in such an erratic and incomprehensible fashion? Through conscientious and deliberate interaction of the author with his audience, who predicts their interests and invites them to go beyond them. Through knowledgeable understatement, conveying through simple events powerful ideas on life, love, and the death that the author supposedly composes in, without once feeling the need to paint an obvious map for the reader to jerk themselves around on.

Through a measured and insightful eye on the actions of the main character, creating a man that dwells on deep thoughts without realization and dismisses them for frivolities and pleasure, yet is incontrovertibly shaped by the powerful undertow. A man who is both infuriatingly obtuse and startlingly sensitive, capable of both great cruelty and great understanding.

A man who lived without effort, and died before making an effort. A man, now dead, writing of a life that he felt was lived without achieving any measure of great suffering, or amount of great joy. Perhaps he never did acquire those things he longed for so long in life. He did, however, find one thing: The character may have never realized the beauty of his thoughts, the wonderful philosophies he drew from a privileged, yet empty living.

I believe, however, that the author trusted us enough to discover those for ourselves. However much he played with us during the course of the pages, flattering our sensibilities while baffling our literary conventions, he trusted us to go through his pages and discover something on our own, for our own. That something, however small, is worth everything. View all 30 comments. There it stands, deprived of the esteem of the serious and the love of the frivolous, the two main pillars of opinion. So the novel may even be considered as an earthy parable of existence.

More modest people will censure me perhaps for this defect. So my idea had two faces, like a medal, one turned toward the public and the other toward me. On one side philanthropy and profit, on the other a thirst for fame. He is vehicle, passenger, and coachman all at the same time. He is Humanitas itself in a reduced form. It follows from that that there is a need for him to worship himself. View all 4 comments. What is there between life and death? Nevertheless, if I hadn't put this chapter together the reader would have suffered a strong shock, quite harmful to the effect of the book.

Jumping from a portrait to an epitaph can be a real and common act. The reader, however, is only taking refuge in the book to escape life. I'm not saying the thought is mine. I'm saying that there's a grain of truth in it and the form, at least, is picturesque. And, I repeat, it's not mine. The Posthumous What is there between life and death? The Posthumous Memoirs is a strange and original book. It is broken into many little chapters, and speaks with a wry ironic voice which is an ideal for the 21st century, not just the 19th.

He toys with the very idea of what a book is, reminding us of its purpose, as I hope to show with the opening quote, but also in what it does not say. In one chapter about why our narrator did not because a State Minister, there is only empty space, a reflection on failed dreams as well as an invitation to retrace our own missed steps. On top of all this savage commentary and literary experimentation, this is also a very funny book.

This recentish GR sensation among my friends—the rest of GR can take a hike failed to please me beyond the p point. There is something about those ponderous nice-guy narrators who ruminate on the quotidian in occasionally profound ways that seems to set GR aflame. My qualms with the book have been expressed by Nate and Jimmy—simply that once the original-for self-commenting aspect and short-chapter structure is out of the way, the story and its telling are quirky but banal. Another lov This recentish GR sensation among my friends—the rest of GR can take a hike failed to please me beyond the p point.

Another lovestruck oaf waffling about how beautiful his angelic beautiful beauty is in all her gorgeosity, padded with otherwise amusing cerebral digressions and quotable bits, followed by MJ snoozing in his comfy king-size. My sincerest apologies to The Puma. View all 6 comments. How could I not want to read this? First, there is the absolutely gorgeous jacket design, including this painting, Young Man with a Pen by Diego Rivera: Second, Mike Puma recommended this. Mike is the go-to guy for Latin American literature. And then, in an introduction by Bras Cubas , the author announces that he has "adopted the free-form of a Sterne or a Xavier de Maistre" in the writing of these Memoirs.

Well, saddle me up and call me Tristram. Machado de Assis has indeed captured Sterne, down t How could I not want to read this? Machado de Assis has indeed captured Sterne, down to the experimental font and digressions. He talks to the reader about what each is doing. Although, unlike Sterne, who delightfully talks to a female reader, Machado de Assis here chats with "the gentleman reading me.

The World just befell him. Bras Cubas, conversely, is amoral, maybe immoral. He was a shitty kid and grew into a rather shitty grown-up. After his treatment of slaves, women in general, and family members, his late life cuckolding of a friend actually serves as his one vulnerable moment. I would recommend this to readers who liked that Sterne changed things, and want to know how writing changed as a result. Or if you're just wanting to finally read a Brazilian author.

I liked this , Mike! But I'd only memorized the formulas, the vocabulary, the skeleton. I treated them as I had Latin: I put three lines from Virgil in my pocket, two from Horace, and a dozen moral and political locutions for the needs of conversation. I treated them the way I treated history and jurisprudence. I picked up the phraseology of all things, the shell, the decoration The truth in his humor, the irony in his innocent expressions and the wisdom in his reckless way of living life while he lived , will make you instantly fall in love with Cubas.

The writer in him finds a way of telling us his witty intentions without sticking to conventions as apparent in the following quotes: What looks like a simple inventory here are notes I'd taken for a sad and banal chapter that I won't write. I found in her a certain ethereal softness wedded to the polish of earthly forms—a vague expression and worthy of a chapter in which everything must be vague.

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Few tears, lots of laughs and random sighs - the life viewed from the other side of the grave is not sieved through the judgmental eyes of the people around us but comes across in an unadulterated form consists of memories collected, mistakes committed and admissions of guilt in the confession box of our hearts and in retrospect, the life appears to be beautiful.

Believe me, remembering is the least evil. No one should trust present happiness, there's a drop of Cain's drivel in it. With the passing of time and the end of rapture, then, yes, then perhaps it's possible really to enjoy, because between these two illusions the better one is the one that's enjoyed without pain. View all 38 comments. The reader, like his fellows, doubtless prefers action to reflection, and doubtless he is wholly in the right. So we shall get to it. However, I must advise that this book is written leisurely, with the leisureliness of a man no longer troubled by the flight of time; that is a work supinely philosophical, but of a philosophy wanting in uniformity, now austere, now playful, a thing that neither edifies nor destroys, neither inflames nor chills, and that is at once more of a pastime and less than The reader, like his fellows, doubtless prefers action to reflection, and doubtless he is wholly in the right.

However, I must advise that this book is written leisurely, with the leisureliness of a man no longer troubled by the flight of time; that is a work supinely philosophical, but of a philosophy wanting in uniformity, now austere, now playful, a thing that neither edifies nor destroys, neither inflames nor chills, and that is at once more of a pastime and less than a preachment. The more I read, the more I come to understand that the trait I admire most in authors is not so much a matter of elegant prose, complex plots, characters that leap off the pages and make their home in your heads when the last page has been turned and the story has ended.

Those are all very entertaining in their own right, but clever is as clever does, and rarely provokes long-lasting admiration in my mind. What I prefer is a simple matter of trust, belief, faith even if that is the direction your theological tendencies swing. Faith of the author in themselves, but more importantly, enough faith in their audience to lead them without expounding, carry them along in the pages without tending to their every need and pandering to their every expectation.

Some would disagree with me on that point. In fact, many would, all those folks who dislike books for "trying too hard" and "being too smart". Those who feel that the author did not adhere to the formula enough to guarantee formulaic enjoyment of the audience, and decry them for leading them out of their literary comfort zones and making them confront a strange beast of ink and paper.

Oftentimes they look at this weird creature and see something of themselves inside it. Sometimes this bothers them. More frequently than you'd expect, this scares them. So what does this have to do with this book here, you ask? I haven't quite figured it out myself, actually.

At least, not at this exact point in time, as I type down these words in the middle of a coffee shop, the book itself on my right and a list of its quotes on the left. That's why you're here. You're joining me on this journey, the goal of which is to find the purpose of conducting in the first place. What this book achieves is an astounding thing in this current age, but even moreso when one takes into account the year of publication.

If you asked me which is more closely related to this particular specimen, I'd have to say TBK. But only in terms of the wealth of philosophical content, the exacting and measured analysis of the human condition, the grappling with questions of success, reputation, and mortality. TBK tells you a story in a sonorous tone, preaches from the pulpit of its well-deserved yet greatly intimidating authorial presence. This book hops up on the stand, poses with hand on hip, says a few words in a serious tone, then quickly hops down and invites you to the back table to ruminate and reminisce over a few choice bottles of the finest vintages.

There is a man behind the curtain, and he doesn't bother to pretend that he doesn't know that you know that he knows it's there. Instead, he welcomes you into his humble abode, and asks if you wish to hear a story. And trust me, reader, you really should say yes. Why do we want to hear this story from this author, one who breaks off from all conventions in serving us what cannot at all be deemed a novel?

One hundred and sixty bits and pieces of one, perhaps, but how could that possibly flow as strongly and as soothingly as a single entity, one that admittedly breaks off into chapters but ensures that each chapter is a well-rounded stepping stone to the next? Instead, we have this book, whose sections sometimes contain no more than a paragraph, a single sentence, even at some point a series of dots or ellipses?

How can a story possibly be told in such an erratic and incomprehensible fashion? Through conscientious and deliberate interaction of the author with his audience, who predicts their interests and invites them to go beyond them. Through knowledgeable understatement, conveying through simple events powerful ideas on life, love, and the death that the author supposedly composes in, without once feeling the need to paint an obvious map for the reader to jerk themselves around on.

Through a measured and insightful eye on the actions of the main character, creating a man that dwells on deep thoughts without realization and dismisses them for frivolities and pleasure, yet is incontrovertibly shaped by the powerful undertow. A man who is both infuriatingly obtuse and startlingly sensitive, capable of both great cruelty and great understanding.

A man who lived without effort, and died before making an effort. A man, now dead, writing of a life that he felt was lived without achieving any measure of great suffering, or amount of great joy. Perhaps he never did acquire those things he longed for so long in life. He did, however, find one thing: The character may have never realized the beauty of his thoughts, the wonderful philosophies he drew from a privileged, yet empty living.

I believe, however, that the author trusted us enough to discover those for ourselves. However much he played with us during the course of the pages, flattering our sensibilities while baffling our literary conventions, he trusted us to go through his pages and discover something on our own, for our own.

That something, however small, is worth everything. View all 30 comments. Nov 20, Vit Babenco rated it it was amazing. There it stands, deprived of the esteem of the serious and the love of the frivolous, the two main pillars of opinion. So the novel may even be considered as an earthy parable of existence. More modest people will censure me perhaps for this defect.

So my idea had two faces, like a medal, one turned toward the public and the other toward me. On one side philanthropy and profit, on the other a thirst for fame. He is vehicle, passenger, and coachman all at the same time. He is Humanitas itself in a reduced form. It follows from that that there is a need for him to worship himself.

View all 4 comments. Jun 30, Hadrian rated it really liked it Shelves: What is there between life and death? Nevertheless, if I hadn't put this chapter together the reader would have suffered a strong shock, quite harmful to the effect of the book. Jumping from a portrait to an epitaph can be a real and common act. The reader, however, is only taking refuge in the book to escape life. I'm not saying the thought is mine. I'm saying that there's a grain of truth in it and the form, at least, is picturesque.

And, I repeat, it's not mine. The Posthumous What is there between life and death? The Posthumous Memoirs is a strange and original book. It is broken into many little chapters, and speaks with a wry ironic voice which is an ideal for the 21st century, not just the 19th. He toys with the very idea of what a book is, reminding us of its purpose, as I hope to show with the opening quote, but also in what it does not say.

In one chapter about why our narrator did not because a State Minister, there is only empty space, a reflection on failed dreams as well as an invitation to retrace our own missed steps. On top of all this savage commentary and literary experimentation, this is also a very funny book. This recentish GR sensation among my friends—the rest of GR can take a hike failed to please me beyond the p point.

There is something about those ponderous nice-guy narrators who ruminate on the quotidian in occasionally profound ways that seems to set GR aflame. My qualms with the book have been expressed by Nate and Jimmy—simply that once the original-for self-commenting aspect and short-chapter structure is out of the way, the story and its telling are quirky but banal. Another lov This recentish GR sensation among my friends—the rest of GR can take a hike failed to please me beyond the p point. Another lovestruck oaf waffling about how beautiful his angelic beautiful beauty is in all her gorgeosity, padded with otherwise amusing cerebral digressions and quotable bits, followed by MJ snoozing in his comfy king-size.

My sincerest apologies to The Puma. View all 6 comments. How could I not want to read this? First, there is the absolutely gorgeous jacket design, including this painting, Young Man with a Pen by Diego Rivera: Second, Mike Puma recommended this. Mike is the go-to guy for Latin American literature.

And then, in an introduction by Bras Cubas , the author announces that he has "adopted the free-form of a Sterne or a Xavier de Maistre" in the writing of these Memoirs.

Well, saddle me up and call me Tristram. Machado de Assis has indeed captured Sterne, down t How could I not want to read this? Machado de Assis has indeed captured Sterne, down to the experimental font and digressions. He talks to the reader about what each is doing. Although, unlike Sterne, who delightfully talks to a female reader, Machado de Assis here chats with "the gentleman reading me. The World just befell him. Bras Cubas, conversely, is amoral, maybe immoral. He was a shitty kid and grew into a rather shitty grown-up. After his treatment of slaves, women in general, and family members, his late life cuckolding of a friend actually serves as his one vulnerable moment.

I would recommend this to readers who liked that Sterne changed things, and want to know how writing changed as a result. Or if you're just wanting to finally read a Brazilian author. I liked this , Mike! The writing was fine, but the effort did not live up to the promise of the book's beauty. Apropos of that nonsensical remark, here is the author's cogitation over a Bibliomaniac: The worst part is the absurdity. The man stays there, hunched over the page, a lens under his right eye, given over completely to the noble and wearing function of deciphering the absurdity.

He's already promised himself to write a brief report in which he will relate the finding of the book and the discovery of the sublimity if there is to be one under that obscure phrase. In the end he discovers nothing and contents himself with ownership. He closes the book, looks at it, looks at it again, goes to the window and holds it up to the sun.

At that moment, passing under the window is a Caesar or a Cromwell on the path to power. He turns his back on him, closes the window, lies down on his hammock, and slowly thumbs through the book, lovingly, wallowing hard. The publishers were meticulous in making it so. How then, I ask no one in particular, is it possible that they allowed no fewer than 50 typos? Something you trip over and immediately right yourself.

Other obvious typos, however, made whole sentences incomprehensible. View all 10 comments. Tengo idea de que a Machado de Assis se le puede enmarcar en dicha corriente, pero no sin especificar que se trata de un representante muy original. La idea de que un muerto escriba libros no era enteramente nueva.

Empiezo a arrepentirme de este libro. View all 5 comments. Contudo, pareceu-me esta narrativa menos interessante e a escrita menos "fresca", o que lhe roubou uma estrela. E digo estranhamente porque, em obras doutros autores, foi sempre algo que me incomodou. After the fabulous Dom Casmurro, I had high expectations and I wasn't disappointed. However, this one seemed to have a less interesting narrative and a less "refreshing" writing.

Some philosophical considerations became somewhat confusing, or maybe I didn't managed to grasp what the author meant And I confess I didn't quite understand Borba's Humanitism I must register some flavourful paragraphs: Not that it bores me, I have nothing to do and, really, putting together a few meager chapters for that other world is always a task that distracts me from eternity a little.

But the book is tedious, it has the smell of grave about it; it has a certain cadeveric contraction about it, a serious fault, insignificant to boot because the main defect of this book is you, reader. You're in a hurry to grow old and the book moves slowly. You love direct and continuous narration, a regular and fluid style, and this book and my style are like drunkards, they stagger left and right, they walk and stop, mumble, yell, cackle, shake their fists at the sky, stumble, and fall One of the best works of Brazilian Literature.

Immortal, like the author. Narrated in the first person, just at first surprises us when the author morbidly dedicates the book to the first worm biting cold of his body meat.

The Posthumous Memoirs of Brás Cubas

This novel transcends his time and it is discovered in the first chapter that the narrator is dead, as he describes in grayish tones his own funeral procession. Free from the living condition, the author describes with ironic sarcasm the undressing of the folly and hypocrisy t One of the best works of Brazilian Literature. Free from the living condition, the author describes with ironic sarcasm the undressing of the folly and hypocrisy that populate society.

The book remains current, as such elements have not yet been revoked by modernity. Interesting characters are presented by this psychological radiograph of an era: Marcela, Spanish courtesan, youth love, which lasted 15 months and 11 short stories. Quincas Borba, a mad philosopher, a remarkable figure, who borrows a watch without saying so. After inheriting a fortune, he returns the clock to him but ends his days in complete hallucination. His father who wished to take him to politics, which in fact succeeded him, became a deputy without the least brilliance, sent him to Europe when he learned of the involvement with Marcela and the expenses she was making.

He becomes a student who is unfit for studies. One point of the work was peppered his secret affair was with Virgilia, wife of the friend Lobo Neves. His sister Sabina arranges a bride to him, Eulalia, who dies with an epidemic. Uncle John is his favorite, pampers him since he was a child and teaches him anecdotes and malice.

Noteworthy is the Chapter XI. The boy is father to the man, who created a true axiom, worthy of theses and literary, philosophical and psychological treatment. It was in the family context that it justified the eccentric adult that would become, finding in the domestic nest the origins of its optics regarding the life.

The reader is invited to judge the events and facts narrated, within an ironic, morbid, lucid and captivating context. A loser, a loser is considered. He tried to create a plaster, as a final work, to relieve the pains of mankind. He dies of contracted pneumonia when he leaves home to patent the invention. The bourgeois suffers countless defeats and troubles in his life, a critique of the ideals of the time that conditioned the vain struggle for success and attachment to appearances.

In his final reflection, full of irony, he states that his greatest glory was not having children and not having transmitted to no creature the legacy of his misery.