Jules Maigret

Jules Maigret ([ʒyl mɛɡʁɛ]), or simply Maigret, is a fictional French police detective, a commissaire ("commissioner") of the Paris Brigade Criminelle (Direction Régionale de Police Judiciaire de Paris), created by writer Georges Simenon. The character's full name is Jules Amedée François Maigret.

Jules Maigret
Bruno Cremer as Jules Maigret
First appearanceThe Strange Case of Peter the Lett (1931)
Created byGeorges Simenon
Portrayed by
OccupationPolice officer
  • Evariste Maigret (father)
  • Hernance Maigret (mother)
Louise Léonard (m. 1912)
Nationality French

76 novels and 28 short stories about Maigret were published between 1931 and 1972, starting with Pietr-le-Letton ("Peter the Lett") and concluding with Maigret et Monsieur Charles ("Maigret and Monsieur Charles"). The Maigret stories were also adapted for television and radio. Penguin Books published new translations of 75 books in the series over as many months; the project was begun in November 2013, by translators David Bellos, Anthea Bell, and Ros Schwartz.[1]


The character of Maigret was invented by Simenon but after the first few novels was influenced by Commissaire Marcel Guillaume, said to be the greatest French detective of his day, who became a longtime friend of Simenon.[2] Maigret is described as a large, broad shouldered man — he is gruff, but patient and fair. Recurring characters in the series include Maigret's wife Louise (usually referred to simply as Madame Maigret) and in particular "The Faithful Four", a group consisting of his four loyal police colleagues (Sgt./Inspector Lucas, Janvier, Lapointe, and Torrence).

He was from the village of Saint-Fiacre in the Allier Department where his father Evariste Maigret was the bailiff for the local landowner; see Simenon's novel Maigret's Failure, about a school bully and contemporary, "Fatty" Ferdinand Fumal from the same village.

List of novels

List of Maigret novels with date of French-language publication as well as the Penguin reissue dates and titles.[3]

TitleDatePenguin UK Reissue DateReissue #Reissue TitleOther English title(s)
Pietr-le-Letton19317 Nov 20131Pietr the LatvianThe Strange Case of Peter the Lett
The Case of Peter the Lett
Maigret and the Enigmatic Lett
Le Charretier de la Providence19316 Feb 20144The Carter of La ProvidenceThe Crime at Lock 14
Maigret Meets a Milord
Lock 14
M. Gallet décédé19315 Dec 20132The Late Monsieur GalletThe Death of Monsieur Gallet
Maigret Stonewalled
Le Pendu de Saint-Pholien19312 Jan 20143The Hanged Man of Saint-PholienThe Crime of Inspector Maigret
Maigret and the Hundred Gibbets
La Tête d'un homme
(L'Homme de la Tour Eiffel)
19313 July 20149A Man's HeadA Battle of Nerves
Maigret's War of Nerves
Le Chien jaune 19316 Mar 20145The Yellow DogA Face for a Clue
Maigret and the Concarneau Murders
Maigret and the Yellow Dog
La Nuit du carrefour19313 Apr 20146Night at the CrossroadsMaigret at the Crossroads
The Night at the Crossroads
Un Crime en Hollande19311 May 20147A Crime in HollandMaigret in Holland
Au Rendez-vous des Terre-Neuves19315 June 20148The Grand Banks CafeThe Sailors' Rendezvous
Maigret Answers a Plea
La Danseuse du Gai-Moulin19317 Aug 201410The Dancer at the Gai MoulinAt the Gai Moulin
Maigret at the Gai Moulin
La Guinguette à deux sous19324 Sep 201411The Two-Penny BarGuinguette by the Seine
Maigret and the Tavern by the Seine
Maigret to the Rescue
A Spot by the Seine
The Bar on the Seine
L'Ombre chinoise19322 Oct 201412The Shadow PuppetThe Shadow in the Courtyard
Maigret Mystified
L'Affaire Saint-Fiacre19326 Nov 201413The Saint-Fiacre AffairMaigret and the Countess
Maigret Goes Home
Maigret on Home Ground
Chez les Flamands19324 Dec 201414The Flemish ShopMaigret and the Flemish Shop
The Flemish House
Le Port des brumes19325 Feb 201516The Misty HarbourDeath of a Harbour Master
Maigret and the Death of a Harbor Master
The Port of Shadows
Le Fou de Bergerac19321 Jan 201515The Madman of BergeracThe Madman of Bergerac
Liberty Bar19325 Mar 201517Liberty BarMaigret on the Riviera
L'Écluse nº 119332 Apr 201518Lock No. 1The Lock at Charenton
Maigret Sits It Out
La femme rousse1933The Redhead
Maigret19347 May 201519MaigretMaigret Returns
La Maison du juge19426 Aug 201522The Judge's HouseMaigret in Exile
Les Caves du Majestic19422 July 201521The Cellars of the MajesticMaigret and the Hotel Majestic
The Hotel Majestic
Cécile est morte19424 June 201520Cecile is DeadMaigret and the Spinster
Signé Picpus19443 Sep 201523Signed, PicpusMaigret and the Fortuneteller
Félicie est là19445 Nov 201525FélicieMaigret and the Toy Village
L'Inspecteur Cadavre19441 Oct 201524Inspector CadaverMaigret's Rival
Maigret se fâche19473 Dec 201526Maigret Gets AngryMaigret in Retirement
Maigret à New York19477 Jan 201627Maigret in New YorkInspector Maigret in New York's Underworld
Maigret in New York's Underworld
Les Vacances de MaigretNovember 19474 Feb 201628Maigret's HolidayA Summer Holiday
No Vacation for Maigret
Maigret on Holiday
Maigret et son mortJanuary 19483 Mar 201629Maigret's Dead ManMaigret's Special Murder
La Première enquête de Maigret, 1913October 19487 Apr 201630Maigret's First CaseMaigret's First Case
Mon ami MaigretFebruary 19495 May 201631My Friend MaigretThe Methods of Maigret
Maigret chez le coronerJuly 19492 June 201632Maigret at the Coroner's
L'Amie de Mme MaigretDecember 19494 Aug 201634Madame Maigret's FriendMadame Maigret's Own Case
The Friend of Madame Maigret
Les Mémoires de MaigretSeptember 19501 Sep 201635Maigret's Memoirs
Maigret et la vieille dameDecember 19507 July 201633Maigret and the Old Lady
Maigret au "Picratt's"December 19506 Oct 201636Maigret at Picratt'sMaigret and the Strangled Stripper
Maigret in Montmartre
Inspector Maigret and the Strangled Stripper
Maigret en meubléFebruary 19513 Nov 201637Maigret Takes a RoomMaigret Rents a Room
Maigret et la grande percheMay 19511 Dec 201638Maigret and the Tall WomanInspector Maigret and the Burglar's Wife
Maigret and the Burglar's Wife
Maigret, Lognon et les gangstersSeptember 19515 Jan 201739Maigret, Lognon and the GangstersInspector Maigret and the Killers
Maigret and the Gangsters
Le Revolver de MaigretJune 19522 Feb 201740Maigret's Revolver
Maigret et l'homme du banc19532 Mar 201741Maigret and the Man on the BenchMaigret and the Man on the Boulevard
The Man on the Boulevard
Maigret a peurMarch 19536 Apr 201742Maigret is AfraidMaigret Afraid
Maigret se trompeAugust 19534 May 201743Maigret's Mistake
Maigret à l'écoleDecember 19531 June 201744Maigret Goes to School
Maigret et la jeune morteJanuary 19546 July 201745Maigret and the Dead GirlInspector Maigret and the Dead Girl
Maigret and the Young Girl
Maigret chez le ministreAugust 19543 Aug 201746Maigret and the MinisterMaigret and the Calame Report
Maigret et le corps sans têteJanuary 19557 Sep 201747Maigret and the Headless Corpse
Maigret tend un piègeJuly 19555 Oct 201748Maigret Sets a Trap
Un échec de MaigretMarch 19562 Nov 201749Maigret's Failure
Maigret s'amuseSeptember 19567 Dec 201750Maigret Enjoys HimselfMaigret's Little Joke
None of Maigret's Business
Maigret voyageAugust 19574 Jan 201851Maigret TravelsMaigret and the Millionaires
Les scrupules de MaigretDecember 19571 Feb 201852Maigret's DoubtsMaigret Has Scruples
Maigret et les témoins récalcitrantsOctober 19581 Mar 201853Maigret and the Reluctant Witnesses
Une confidence de MaigretMay 19595 Apr 201854Maigret's SecretMaigret Has Doubts
Maigret aux assisesNovember 19593 May 201855Maigret in Court
Maigret et les vieillardsJune 19607 June 201856Maigret and the Old PeopleMaigret in Society
Maigret et le voleur paresseuxJanuary 19615 July 201857Maigret and the Lazy BurglarMaigret and the Lazy Burglar
Maigret and the Idle Burglar
Maigret et les braves gensSeptember 19612 Aug 201858Maigret and the Good People of MontparnasseMaigret and the Black Sheep
Maigret et le client du samediFebruary 19626 Sep 201859Maigret and the Saturday Caller Maigret and the Saturday Caller
Maigret et le clochardMay 19624 Oct 201860Maigret and the TrampMaigret and the Dosser
Maigret and the Bum
La colère de MaigretJune 19621 Nov 201861Maigret's AngerMaigret Loses His Temper
Maigret et le fantômeJune 19636 Dec 201862Maigret and the GhostMaigret and the Ghost
Maigret and the Apparition
Maigret se défendJuly 19643 Jan 201963Maigret Defends HimselfMaigret on the Defensive
La Patience de MaigretMarch 19657 Feb 201964Maigret's PatienceThe Patience of Maigret
Maigret Bides His Time
Maigret et l'affaire NahourFebruary 19667 March 201965Maigret and the Nahour CaseMaigret and the Nahour Case
Le voleur de MaigretNovember 19664 April 201966Maigret's PickpocketMaigret's Pickpocket
Maigret and the Pickpocket
Maigret à VichySeptember 19676 June 201968Maigret in VichyMaigret Takes the Waters
Maigret in Vichy
Maigret hésiteJanuary 19682 May 201967Maigret HesitatesMaigret Hesitates
L'ami d'enfance de MaigretJune 19684 July 201969Maigret's Childhood FriendMaigret's Boyhood Friend
Maigret et le tueurApril 19691 Aug 201970Maigret and the KillerMaigret and the Killer
Maigret et le marchand de vinSeptember 19695 Sep 201971Maigret and the Wine MerchantMaigret and the Wine Merchant
La Folle de MaigretMay 19703 Oct 201972Maigret's MadwomanMaigret and the Madwoman
Maigret et l'homme tout seulFebruary 19717 Nov 201973Maigret and the LonerMaigret and the Loner
Maigret et l'indicateurJune 19715 Dec 201974Maigret and the InformerMaigret and the Flea
Maigret and the Informer
Maigret et Monsieur CharlesFebruary 19729 Jan 202075Maigret and Monsieur CharlesMaigret and Monsieur Charles

List of short stories

List of Maigret short stories by date of publication.

TitleDateEnglish title(s)
"Une erreur de Maigret"1938"Maigret's Mistake"
"L'amoureux de Madame Maigret"1938"The Stronger Vessel"
"Madame Maigret's Admirer"
"Stan le tueur"1938"Stan the Killer"
"L'auberge aux noyés"1938"The Inn of the Drowned"
"The Drowned Men's Inn"
"La péniche aux deux pendus"1938"The Barge with Two Hanging Bodies"
"Inspector Maigret Thinks"
"Dead Man's Barge"
"Two Bodies on a Barge"
"L'affaire du boulevard Beaumarchais"1938"The Affair of the Boulevard Beaumarchais"
"The Mysterious Affair in the Boulevard Beaumarchais"
"Monsieur Lundi"1938"Mr. Monday"
"Inspector Maigret Hesitates"
"Jeumont, 51 minutes d'arrêt"1938"Jeumont, 51 Minutes Wait!"
"Inspector Maigret Deduces"
"Jeumont, 51 Minutes Stop"
"Les larmes de bougie"1938"Journey Into Time"
"Journey Backward Into Time"
"Death of a Woodlander"
"Rue Pigalle"1938"Maigret in Rue Pigalle"
"In the Rue Pigalle"
"La vieille dame de Bayeux"1938"The Old Lady of Bayeux"
"L'Étoile du Nord"1938"At the Étoile du Nord"
"Tempête sur la Manche"1938"Storm in the Channel"
"Storm over the Channel"
"Mademoiselle Berthe et son amant"1938"Maigret and the Frightened Dressmaker"
"Mademoiselle Berthe and her Lover"
"L'improbable Monsieur Owen"1938"The Unlikely Monsieur Owen"
"Ceux du Grand Café"1938"The Group at the Grand-Café"
"Le notaire du Châteauneuf"1938"Inspector Maigret and the Missing Miniatures"
"The Three Daughters of the Lawyer"
"La fenêtre ouverte"1938"The Open Window"
"Inspector Maigret Smokes His Pipe"
"L'homme dans la rue"1939"The Man on the Run"
"Inspector Maigret Pursues"
"The Man in the Street"
"Vente à la bougie"1939"Under the Hammer"
"Inspector Maigret Directs"
"Sale by Auction"
"Menaces de mort"1942"Death Threats"
"La pipe de Maigret"June 1945"Maigret's Pipe"
"Le témoinage de l'enfant de choeur"1946"Elusive Witness"
"According to the Altar Boy"
"Crime in the Rue Sainte-Catherine"
"The Evidence of the Altar-Boy"
"Le client le plus obstiné du monde"May 1946"The Most Obstinate Man in Paris"
"The Most Obstinate Customer in the World"
"The Most Obstinate Man in the World"
"Maigret et l'inspecteur malgracieux"May 1946"Maigret and the Surly Inspector"
"On ne tue pas les pauvres types"August 1946"Death of a Nobody"
"Sous peine de mort"November 1946"Inspector Maigret's War of Nerves"
"Death Penalty"
"Un noël de Maigret"May 1950"Maigret's Christmas"

In other media


The cinematic potential of Maigret was realized quickly: the first screen Maigret was Pierre Renoir in 1932's Night at the Crossroads, directed by his brother Jean Renoir; the same year brought The Yellow Dog with Abel Tarride, and Harry Baur played him in 1933's La Tête d'un homme, directed by Julien Duvivier. In 1950, Charles Laughton played the first English-language Maigret in The Man on the Eiffel Tower, adapted from same source: the 1931 novel A Battle of Nerves. The film co-starred Franchot Tone, Burgess Meredith, and Wilfrid Hyde-White. In France, Jean Gabin played the part in three films, released in 1958, 1959, and 1963. Heinz Rühmann played the lead in a 1966 European international co-production Enter Inspector Maigret.


There have been numerous incarnations of Maigret on the small screen all around the world. He has been portrayed by French, British, Irish, Austrian, German, Italian, Dutch, Japanese, and Russian actors. A French version, Les Enquêtes du Commissaire Maigret, starred Jean Richard in more than 80 episodes between 1967 and 1990—however, Simenon himself is said to have disliked Richard's Maigret because he would not take his hat off when entering a room. Later, Bruno Cremer played the character in 54 adaptations between 1991 and 2005.

The Italian actor Gino Cervi played the character on Italian television, starting from 1964 up to 1972; Simenon himself considered Cervi's interpretation of the character to be possibly the best. This series resulted in 14 novels and 2 short stories being adapted.

In the Soviet Union, Russian theatre actor Boris Tenin portrayed Maigret in a number of TV films in the 1970s. In Soviet cinema, apart from Boris Tenin, Maigret was portrayed by cinema actors Vladimir Samoylov and Armen Dzigarkhanyan.

In Japan, Kinya Aikawa played Megure, a Japanese-born equivalent to the French Maigret, reinvented in a modern Japanese setting, in Tōkyō. Megure Keishi,[5] a 25-episode TV series aired from 14 April to 29 May 1978 on Asahi TV. Megure's wife was played by Sato Tomomi, who earned the praises of Simenon himself: "The best 'Madame Maigret' in my opinion, even including the French ones, was the 'Madame Maigret' on Japanese television. She was exactly right".[6]

The title role in the 1960s British Maigret TV series was played by the actor Rupert Davies, who made his debut on 31 October 1960. Davies took over the part after Basil Sydney, who appeared as Maigret in the original transmitted pilot, proved unavailable owing to ill-health. Davies went on to star in 52 adaptations for BBC TV in that decade. His portrayal won two of the highest accolades: his versions were dubbed into French and played across the Channel; and Simenon himself presented Davies with a novel inscribed to his "perfect Maigret". The theme tune to the TV series was composed by Ron Grainer.

Granada Television produced an adaptation of Maigret for ITV in 1992 and 1993 in which Michael Gambon starred as Maigret; there were 12 adaptations in the two series. An earlier version (1988) on ITV cast Richard Harris in the lead role, with a somewhat idiosyncratic reading of the character. Rowan Atkinson plays Maigret in Maigret for TV-films made by ITV from 2016. The first two episodes were adapted from Maigret Sets a Trap and Maigret's Dead Man. Two further episodes were broadcast in 2017, adapted from Maigret at the Crossroads and Inspector Maigret and the Strangled Stripper.[7]


Maurice Denham played Chief Inspector Maigret in a series of three-quarter-hour dramatizations of the novels on BBC Radio 4 beginning in 1976, with Michael Gough playing Georges Simenon. The format of each play would begin with Maigret and Simenon sitting together discussing some fact or event which would then lead into Maigret's recounting a particular case, with Simenon asking questions or commenting from time to time. After Denham's death, the series was continued in 2003 with Nicholas Le Prevost playing a gruffer, more earthy Maigret and Julian Barnes playing Simenon.


Jacques Blondeau adapted the novels into the comic series Maigret (1950–53), published in Samedi Soir and Paris Journal.[8] Rumeu (drawings) and Camille Dulac (script) adapted the Maigret story L'Affaire Nahour into the comic strip Maigret in 1969. Between 1992 and 1997 the series Maigret inspired five albums, drawn by Philippe Wurm and Frank Brichau.[9]

Other appearances

Inspector Juzo Megure from Detective Conan is loosely based on Maigret, in both appearance and name. Both are police inspectors, and are known for wearing hats and overcoats. The rendering in the Japanese syllabary for Megure and Maigret is the same (me-gu-re; in other words, the names are pronounced the same in Japanese).

Maigret himself was also highlighted in volume 5 of the Detective Conan manga's edition of "Gosho Aoyama's Mystery Library", a section of the graphic novels where the author introduces a different detective (or occasionally, a villain) from mystery literature, television, or other media. The character of Detective Marcel Guillaume appears as a visiting investigator on the fourth-season episode "Monsieur Murdoch" of "Murdoch Mysteries".


  1. "Penguin to publish 75 Maigret novels". Thebookseller.com. Retrieved 22 December 2018.
  2. "List of Penguin Reissues". Penguin.co.uk. Archived from the original on 30 December 2017. Retrieved 29 December 2017.
  3. "The Maigret Statue at Delfzijl". Trussel.com. Retrieved 22 December 2018.
  4. Tôkyo Megure Keishi on the Japanese Wikipedia (in Japanese)
  5. A picture of Kinya Aikawa as Maigret/Megure, and Simenon's quote from La Revue du Cinéma nº 454, November, 1989. Article retrieved on Trussel.com
  6. Rowan Atkinson on IMDb
  7. "Jacques Blondeau". Lambiek.net. Retrieved 22 December 2018.
  8. "Philippe Wurm". Lambiek.net. Retrieved 22 December 2018.
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