The Seven Crystal Balls

The Seven Crystal Balls
Tintin © Hergé/Moulinsart.

Original French title

Les Sept Boules de Cristal

Publication history

The series began in Le Soir between 16 December 1943 and 3 September 1944. It continues in Tintin magazine between 26 September 1946 and 12 June 1947. The Tintin magazine version begins with a summary (in a newspaper). The story starts on page 50 of today's album. The last strip appeared in issue number 13 (Tintin magazine. Number 13. 19 December 1946). The last strip of 19 December 1946 is the first strip of the first page of Prisoners of the Sun. [EC]

English edition

1962 - first UK edition published by Methuen, London.

1994 - Mammoth (London). Colour. 62p. 30cm. Paperback. ISBN:0749704586.

Related link

First publication dates of The Adventures of Tintin


Seven explorers are home from Peru; among their trophies is the mummy of Rascar Capac, looted from an Inca tomb. One by one the explorers are struck by a mysterious illness, and beside each lie the fragments of a crystal ball. Tintin and Captain Haddock are soon involved. They learn of the ancient curse upon those who violate the Inca's tomb. Then one night the mummy vanishes; later, Professor Calculus is kidnapped. Tintin, Snowy and Captain Haddock take up the chase in the first part of a remarkable South American adventure. [AR]


  1. Cameos:
    • Page 16, frame 4: E. P. Jacobs (in brown suit, black bow-tie) is in the middle floor box on the left hand side.
    • Page 46, frame 6: The driver of the fawn car is the Peruvian Guano exporter, Fernando Ramirez. The name appeared on a frame written on 3 September 1944 and was later omitted from the book.
    • Page 57, frame 2: Jacques van Melkebeke is standing behind General Alcazar
    • Page 61, frames 7-14: Quick and Flupke? Etienne Chevalier (our Belgium Correspondent) does not think the boys are Quick and Flupke, because the boys are too far from home (Quick and Flupke live in Brussels, which is far from La Rochelle).
  2. The 'fire ball' phenomenon featured in the book is called ball lightning.
  3. According to Pierre Assouline's biography of Hergé: the original part of The Seven Crystal Balls had the picture of Rascar Capac (the mummy) in an oval vignette on the first page. The publisher Casterman received complaints about this as the picture was too frightening for young readers. Consequently, Hergé replaced the current picture of Captain Haddock wrestling with a stage prop. [SJ]
  4. Professor Tarragon's villa in the same book was a house near Brussels, spotted by E. P. Jacobs. Hergé and Jacobs went there to make sketches, only to find out afterwards that the house was occupied by the SS! [SJ]
  5. On page 10 between frame 10 (C2) and 13 (D2), an extra knife appears above Chiquito's head. [EC]
  6. On page 12, frame 8 (C1), the dark-skinned Yamilah has extraordinarily white legs! [EC]
  7. On page 22, between frames 4 (B1) and 7 (C1), the colour of the postman's shoes changes from black to brown. [EC]
  8. The supposedly very dead stuffed birds in the glass display cabinet, outside Dr Midge's office, change position between frames 4 (B1) and 13 (D3) on page 22. [EC]
  9. The colour of the chair Calculus is sitting on in page 31, frame 7 (C1), differs from the one featured on the cover of the album. [EC]
  10. Between page 36, frame 13 (D3) and page 37, frame 3 (A3), where did Tintin find some water to wash his face--as well as his clothes? [EC]
  11. On page 54, last frame (D2), the rainbow is the wrong side up: the rainbow has red on the outside and purple on the inside. [EC]
  12. The map on the wall on page 55, last frame (D3), differs from the one shown on page 62, frame 4 (B1). [EC]

Title in other languages

  1. Basque - Kristalezko 7 bolak
  2. Bengali - Momir Abhishap
  3. Breton - Ar 7 boulenn strink
  4. Catalan - Les 7 boles de cristall
  5. Chinese - China: 七个水晶球 (Qi ge shuijing qiu) / Hong Kong and Taiwan: 七個水晶球 (Qi ge shuijing qiu)
  6. Danish - De syv krystalkugler
  7. Dutch - De zeven kristallen bollen
  8. Farsi/Perisan - Haft guyi buluri
  9. Finnish - Seitsemän kristallipalloa
  10. Galician - As 7 bolas de cristal
  11. German - Die sieben Kristallkugeln
  12. Greek - Oj 7 krystallines mpales
  13. Hebrew - Shivea'te Kadorey haBedolach
  14. Hungarian - A 7 kristálygömb
  15. Icelandic - Sjö kraftmiklar kristalskúlur
  16. Indonesian - Tujuh bola ajaib [Indira edition] / 7 Bola Kristal [Gramedia edition]
  17. Italian - Le sette sfere di cristallo
  18. Japanese - ななつの水晶球 Nanatsu no suisho dama
  19. Norwegian - De syv kryistallkule
  20. Occitan - Las 7 bolas de cristal
  21. Portuguese - As 7 bolas de cristal
  22. Provençal - Li 7 boulo de cristal
  23. Russian - 7 hrustal'nyh sharov
  24. Serbo-Croatian - 7 kristalnih kugli
  25. Sinhalese - Paligu bola hatha
  26. Spanish - Las 7 bolas de cristal
  27. Swedish - De sju kristallkulorna del 1
  28. Turkish - 7 kristal Küre
  29. Vietnamese - Bây vién bi thúy tinh huyén bi

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Last updated: 29 December 2012.
Latest changes: Indonesian Gramedia edition title added.