Asterix und die Normannen (Grosser Asterix)

by Goscinny

Other authorsUderzo (Illustrator)
Hardcover, 1996



Call number



Delta Verlag (1996)


A Norman invasion of the Gaulish village! But only trendy teenager Justforkix, visiting from Lutetia, fears them, for the Gauls have their magic potion. But the Normas themselves want to learn the meaning of fear: can Asterix and his friends teach them? Another secret weapon is brought into play...and at long last the bard Cacofonix wins the appreciation due to him.

User reviews

LibraryThing member David.Alfred.Sarkies
Once again this entire adventure takes place in the little village we know so well. One of Chief Vitalstatistix's nephews has been sent from Lutetia (Paris) out to Amorica to toughen him up, and as it turns out he comes across as one of those young people who do not understand the concept of work.
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He arrives in a sporty chariot (made in Milan, which made me think of the Ferarri) and in a way brings the idea of the city life out to the country. However, the album is more than this because way up north in Scandanavia the Norsemen, who are the Normans, want to learn the meaning of fear so that they might be able to fly, so they jump in a boat and sail to a random place (which happens to be this little village we know so well) to find out all about fear.
There are quite a few jokes about Normans and conquests here, and a part of me when I read this album about ten years ago thought it was wrong. However (and I have not researched this) I suspect that the Normans originally were Vikings that during the period of the Viking invasions, came and settled in the region known now as Normandy. The Vikings actually did that quite a lot. There was a period of English history when the Danes pretty much controlled a large chunk of central England which, at the time, was called the Dane Law. Further, there are a number of jokes about how the Normans were not actually supposed to arrive for a few centuries yet.
Now, I understand that Asterix is not necessarily supposed to be historically accurate, but one thing that it is is satire. As I read this one I came to understand what the whole basis of these albums are supposed to be. As I said, it is not necessarily political or social criticism but rather satire. The idea that I came across is that struggle that exists between the pastoral idealism of the country and the modernising influence of the city. Where the little village we know so well reflects the tranquil idealism of the country, the Romans reflect the modernising influence that is rolling out over our world.
Many of us on the modernising side like to see our ideas as being progress, however being on the intellectual, university trained side we fail to see the pleasant aspects of a rural setting where things do not change and have not changed for years. For instance we have the green grass, the singing birds, the communal feasts, and the general aspect where everybody knows everybody else. However there tends to be a resistance among such places against the modernising influence, as can be represented by Cacofonix the bard. The truth is that it is not that Cacofonix is playing modern music, it is simply that he cannot sing and cannot play music at all. When the Lutetian tells him that he will be a hit in Lutetia, it is not because he is any good, it is more because the variety of tastes that come about in the big city will mean that people will actually come to see that maybe this person that cannot play music for the life of him is simply somebody who is experimenting and trying something new.
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LibraryThing member theboylatham
Seven out of ten. CBR format.
Normans don't feel fear so they travel to Gaul to discover what it's all about.
LibraryThing member scuzzy
This is another volume that my eldest bought home for me, making it the umpteenth adventure I have read.

This follows the little village as they look after the chief's nephew who has been sent to harden up somewhat - except it conincides with the landing of the Normans, the fearless warriors looking
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for the meaning of fear. Of all people to save them it is Cacofonix, the Bard, who wins the day and sends them packing.

In true style, the names are priceless;

Norman chief Timandahaf
a Roman soldier, Consensus
and some of the Norman warriors - Pyshopaf, Epitaf, Cenotaf, Nescaf, Autograf, RiffRaf, and my favourites, Firsthaf and Secondhaf!

This is the second volume where Cacofonix is not tied up at the end, and we also see Dogmatix's distress over uprooted trees for the first time.
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LibraryThing member leslie.98
Just love all the puns and the great artwork!
LibraryThing member wyvernfriend
It's a lot of fun and what you expect from Asterix, the Normans come to see what fear is and meet the villagers in the last unconquered gaulish village who have Justforkix as a visitor. Lots of puns and jokes about Norman conquests and a lot of smiting of all sorts, particularly Romans.
LibraryThing member leslie.98
Just love all the puns and the great artwork!


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