Birth of Félicien Joseph Victor Rops in Namur, on 7 July, only son of the industrialist Nicolas Rops and Sophie Maubile.
In 1843 he began his secondary education in Collège Notre-Dame de la Paix (Namur). There he received several excellent school reports for the quality of his work. He rapidly began to excel in Latin.
It is not known what caused Félicien Rops to adopt an anti-clerical and anti-conformist attitude, which led to his expulsion from this school. He then continued his studies at the Athénée in Namur. His father died in 1849.
Rops registered at the Academy of Art in Namur. At 18 he entered the Université Libre de Bruxelles (University of Brussels) where he moved in the intellectual, lampoonist and artistic circles of the time. He showed a talent as a fierce caricaturist, especially at the Charivari Belge and the "Uylenspiegel",
which he founded with Charles de Coster in 1856, and where his
were particularly appreciated.
Rops’ first works ("La peine de mort", "L’Ordre règne à Varsovie", "La médaille de Waterloo") express his revulsion and protestation at the disasters of his era. His talent would lead him subsequently to illustrate Flemish Legends by Charles de Coster.
In 1857, he married Charlotte Polet de Faveaux, daughter of a Namur lawyer. They had two children, a son
Paul and a daughter, Juliette,
who died at a young age.