Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands (novel)

  (Redirected from Dona Flor e Seus Dois Maridos)

Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands (Portuguese: Dona Flor e Seus Dois Maridos) is a fantasy novel by Brazilian writer Jorge Amado, published in 1966; it was translated into English by Harriet de Onís in 1969.[1] The novel was adapted for the first time into the 1976 film Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands.

Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands
Cover of the first edition
AuthorJorge Amado
Original titleDona Flor e Seus Dois Maridos
TranslatorHarriet de Onís
PublisherLivraria Martins Editora
Publication date
Published in English
1969 (Avon Books)


The novel, set in Salvador, Bahia, opens with the sudden death of Dona Flor's husband, Vadinho, who collapses in the midst of Carnival celebrations. He is dancing a samba in the streets when his heart gives out, a surprise to all as Vadinho had spent his entire life gambling, partying and drinking with no hint of problems. His nights on the town and his two-timing had been supported by sponging off Dona Flor, the owner of a successful cooking school and his demands for money had been a constant worry and cause of sleepless nights for her. The women of the town thought she was well rid of him. But after Vadinho's death, he remained the love of her life and she missed his seductiveness. He was irresistible, and his absence was, for Dona Flor, worse than the long nights when she waited for him to come home.

After a period of mourning, Dona Flor attracts another admirer, a local pharmacist, Teodoro. Unlike Vadinho he is a pillar of respectability, kind and considerate. Dona Flor accepts his proposal. While her new husband lacks the passionate sensuality of Vadinho, he compensates by providing a life free of worry. But, on the first anniversary of her marriage, Vadinho returns. He is now a ghost, but has lost none of his old ways. His activities create commotion everywhere, from Dona Flor’s marriage bed to the local nightspots. She is torn between her attraction to the ghost and her desire to continue as the faithful wife of Teodoro, who has no idea what is going on.


Throughout the novel, Amado draws on Afro-Brazilian rituals and folklore. In the final section local deities get heavily involved, as well as most of the mystics of Bahia. But Vadinho is the centerpiece of the novel, and the book captures the extravagance of his exploits, both during his life and after his death. According to a review by Ted Gioia "few stories have done a better job of capturing this type of lovable villain".[2]



  1. ^ Amado, Jorge, translated by Harriet De Onís (1969). Dona Flor and her two husbands. New York: Avon Books. p. 521.
  2. ^ Gioia, Ted. "Dona Flor and her Two Husbands". Conceptual Fiction. Retrieved 18 December 2014.
  3. ^ "'Sarava', a Musical Version of 'Dona Flor'". The New York Times. February 12, 1979. Retrieved October 11, 2020.
  4. ^ "Dona Flor e Seus 2 Maridos (1998 TV series)". IMDb. Retrieved 15 September 2020.
  5. ^ "Carol Castro encara o desafio de interpretar Dona Flor no teatro". Retrieved 12 October 2020.
  6. ^ "Dona Flor e Seus Dois Maridos (2017 film)". IMDb. Retrieved 15 September 2020.