Make your own free website on

rimbaud2001.gif (17747 bytes)

wallace fowlie's rimbaud chronology


"I have stretched ropes from steeple to steeple; garlands from window to window; golden charms from star to star, and I dance."

-Rimbaud, from Phrases



The following chronology is taken from the now out-of-print RIMBAUD - The Myth of Childhood by Wallace Fowlie (1946 The By Portsdown Press, Fleet Lane, London, EC4)


20th October 1854 Birth of Jean-Nicolas Arthur Rimbaud, in Charleville (Ardennes)
Easter 1865 Enters 7ieme classe, College de Charleville
October 1869 writes first poetry in French
January 1870 arrival of Georges Izambard in Charleville
24th May letter to Banville (Rimbaud is 15 years, 7 months old)
July-August Franco-Prussian War breaks out
6th August graduation at the College
25th August letter to Izambard (at Douai)
29th August first flight to Paris, by train; in prison at Mazas
5th September letter (from Paris) to Izambard
8th September arrives at Douai
27th September returns to Charleville
7th October second flight, to Belgium; Charleroi, Bruxelles, Douai (last visit with Izambard)
29th October returns to Charleville
31st December Mezieres (next town to Charleville) bombarded
January 1871 extensive reading on magic
25th February third flight to Paris; in home of Andre Gill
10th March returns to Charleville
April-May in Paris, participates in la Commune, Caserne de Babylone (?), enlists in "les tirailleurs de la Revolution"

returns to Charleville

12th May letter to Izambard; first Lettre de voyant (encloses Le Couer Vole)
15th May letter to Demeny (second Lettre du voyant)
12th July last letter to Izambard
August writes to Verlaine, encloses Bateau Ivre
end September arrives at Verlaine's house; leaves after 15 (?) days
middle December lives in room, paid for by Verlaine, rue Campagne Premiere
January-April 1872 in Paris
April returns to Charleville
May in Paris, lives in Hotel de Cluny, rue Victor Cousin
7th July leaves for Brussels with Verlaine
8th September Rimbaud and Verlaine leave for England
10th September they arrive in London; accused by Mme Verlaine; defended by Mme Rimbaud
end December Rimbaud in Charleville; Verlaine, abandoned in London, calls Rimbaud
January 1873 Rimbaud comes to London; illness and hallucinations; returns to Roche (near Charleville); begins Une Saison en Enfer
25th May Rimbaud and Verlaine embark at Antwerp for England
end June violent quarrel in London; Verlaine leaves for Belgium; Rimbaud penniless in London. Verlaine sends money to Rimbaud, who leaves London
8th July Rimbaud in Brussels, Hotel de la Ville de Courtrai, I, rue des Brasseurs
12th July Rimbaud accuses Verlaine but denies calumny; Verlaine incarcerated in prison of Mons Rimbaud returns to the Ardennes
20th July on the farm at Roche; finishes Une Saison en Enfer
October Une Saison printed
March 1874 in London with Germain Nouveau. Rimbaud is 20; becomes tutor in Scotland
1875 February: sees Verlaine for the last time in Stuttgard; Wanderings: Milan, Turin, Sienna; Charleville in October; studies languages; December: his sister Vitalie dies
1876 quarrels with mother and brother; June: joins Dutch army; July: deserts in Java; returns to Charleville 31st December.
1877 Germany, Copenhagen, Stockhold, Marseille, Rome; winter in Charleville
1878 spring in Charleville; Genoa, Egypt
1879 Cyprus; June in Roche (after typhoid fever); Rimbaud 25 this winter; end of aimless vagabondage
1880 Aden; coffee exporter; Harra
1881 contracts syphilis; returns to Aden in December
1882 Aden; Harrar
1884 in Aden with Harai girl
1891 April: suffers from knee; 2nd May arrive at Marseille; June, July: writes to Isabelle; his leg amputated; July: returns to Roche; August: returns to Marseille; dies 10th November at 10 in the morning


home - about this site - biography - a season in hell - the illuminations - drunken boat poempaul verlaine - letterschronology - about absinthetotal eclipse - enid starkie - henry miller - jim carroll's rimbaud scenes -bookstore - book reviews - rimbaud links - vagabonds - forum - mailing list - guestbook - chat room - email webmaster