This wedding or rather marriage is both symbolic and quite literal. After Esmeralda is executed and placed in a crypt, Quasimodo seeks in, lays down besides her, embraces her and dies next to her. So no actual fancy wedding takes place but the union is very clear and by god is it bittersweet.

Unlike the other weddings in Hunchback, this one seems like it genuinely came from a place of love even though Esmeralda is a non-player in this union, which I feel should bother me a little bit now that I think about it but it doesn’t really. The two skeletons wrapped in the embrace is so lyrical and tragic that it’s just so beautiful and the ending chapter gets me every single time I read it.

It’s also nice play on the whole “till death do we part” since death literally brought these two together.

I do wish more movies and adaptations would do this ending. We get it in the 1956 version and Notre Dame de Paris. Der Glockner hinted at it and I think, could be wrong, but English version of the Disney musical did it do, I think. I’m pretty Esmeralda dies at the end so why wouldn’t they do it. Then again the 77 version had Esmeralda die and didn’t do it but then again that’s the 77 version for you.

Victor Hugo picture image

Victor Hugo

Portrait of Adele Hugo by Gemaelde von Louis Boulanger image

Portrait of Adele Hugo by Gemaelde von Louis Boulanger










Victor Hugo married the girl next door, Adèle Foucher. Hugo’s mother, Sophie, was against the match but after her death he married Adèle  on October 14 1822. They had five children together. In 1830,  after their youngest daughter (named Adèle ) was born  the elder Adèle told Hugo that  she didn’t want anymore children which was code for no more sex. Both Hugo and the Adèle took lovers.  However it was the expulsion from Adèle bed’s that was the inspiration for Phoebus‘ tragic fate of getting married Notre Dame de Paris.


Further Reading

Victor Hugo: A Biography
Love Letters of Great Men: The Collection of Love Letters Drawn from by Carrie Bradshaw in “Sex in the City”
Hugo: The Strange Life and Visions of Victor Hugo