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The book translates from Romanian as “Otilia’s Enigma” and describes the following actions in a historical period of a few years before the First Ofiliei War. Felix Sima, a 18 years old young man, arrives at Bucharest at his uncle Costache Giurgiuveanu, in order to study at the Faculty of Medicine.

Once arrived at the established address, Otilia, the adopted protege of his uncle, invites him at the table where Felix gets to know the other members of the family: Otilia is in a close friendship with Pascalopol and envied by the Tulea family.

She has been an orphan since little and raised by her stepfather, Mr. Pascalopol knew her mother and since then helped them very much, having a certain respect for her.

Felix on the other side feels more attracted to Otilia which he admires, and with whom he spends more and more time. Unfortunately he sees a rival in Pascalopol. At the beginning of August, Olimpia, the eldest child of Aglae, makes her appearance in the house together with Stanica, her paramour with which she has a child. Stanica, through lies and letters addressed to Pascalopol as he wants to commit suicide, manages to obtain some money from everyone and convince Simion to give Olimpia somewhere to live.

Stanica is interested in Mr.

The only person who finds out about this plan is Pascalopol, who warns the old man. Between Felix and Otilia appears a strong relation of eenigma and attachment. Felix confesses his love, Otilia appearing touched, but looking at him in a childish manner.


Her caring towards Felix seems more to be as the one of a sister.

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Ashamed, Felix writes down all his sentiments towards her, sending a letter, but without an answer. In a moment of envy, Felix asks Otilia to stop communicating with Pascalopol, but, after being invited by him at his house, realizes the mistake he made in front of Otilia.

In the house the gossips about the adoption of Otilia becomes more intense after an implication from Aglae. In the end Otilia askes Mr. Costache not to make any formal adoption procedure and leaves with Pascalopol at his house, leaving Felix surprised and disappointed.

He finds comfort in the hands of a courtesan, Georgeta. Felix has the occasion to meet Weissmann, a faculty colleague that awakens inside him a small passion for poetry. After some talking, Felix finds out about his difficult financial condition, as well as his practical spirit, Weissmann making injections and consulting different persons in order to help his brothers and sisters.

The dinner at Mr. But seeing as he starts being delirious, Aglae, helped by Stanica and Weissmann take him to a sanatorium.

One of her 16 year old nieces, Lili, shows her with to marry, Stanica recommending to her father Felix Sima, driven by his with to bring in this family influent persons. Costache has plans with Felix and Otilia, starting to gather construction materials for a house where the who will live after his death.

Stanica meets Felix with Lili, startling Titi which is attracted by the girl, and unable to understand the female attraction towards doctor Sima Felix. Because of an insolation and a fatigue, Mr.

Pascalopol brings in a certified doctor, a university professor, which recommends a lot of peace and rest to the ill. Costache starts feeling better, asking every member of the Tulea family to leave his house.


He agrees together with Mr. Pascalopol to open a bank account on the calinrscu of Otilia with a value of Lei great money for the beginning of the 20 th cebtury. Pascalopol put in the same bank account another After the heart attack Mr. Costache becomes more and more scared of death, Stanica being a cause of it, thanks to his constant stories about tragedies. He consults different doctors, follows a special treatment spending money on medicine and even inviting priests to holy house.

After that he sells different proprieties across the city he is a wide rental lord in the capital and brings in the house a maid named Paulina. Costache finds out about her interest towards his fortune.

Mos Costache gives Pascalopol Stanica, after intense searches in Mr. While seeing the heist, Mr. Costache has another heart attack and dies. Felix, with the beginning of the First World War, becomes a doctor, afterward a university teacher, and has a successful marriage entering the high society.

Felix once accidentally met Pascalopol in a train post war periodfinding out he divorced Otilia, which is now married to a rich man in Buenos Aires. The memories of this idyll are well described by Mr. Costaches words beginning of the novel: Sign In Don’t have an account? This article contains plot details, read at your own risk.

George Calinescu, Enigma Otiliei

Felix dreams about Otilia singing at the piano, this being a reality actually. Stanica divorces Olimpia and marries Georgeta, entering in politics afterwards. Retrieved from ” http: