Wednesday, July 24, 2013
July 24 - Alexandre Dumas père
French author Alexandre Dumas was born on July 24, 1802, near Paris in northern France. He is also known as Alexandre Dumas, père, to distinguish him from his son, also an author. In the 1840s he wrote many plays and, most notably, historical novels of high adventure on which his reputation is based, celebrating themes of loyalty and honor among men. The Count of Monte Cristo (1844), first serialized in a weekly paper, was a literary success that made Dumas rich, thanks to its protagonist, sailor Edmond Dantès, who, after a wrongful trial and imprisonment, embarks on a search for justice and vengeance that also involved wealth, forgiveness and love. The Three Musketeers (1844) recounts the adventures of the young nobleman d'Artagnan who leaves home and joins the Musketeers of the Guard in Paris, becoming friends with the inseparable trio Athos, Porthos and Aramis, who live by the motto, "all for one, one for all." On both books Dumas collaborated with ghostwriter Auguste Maquet, who was well paid to outline the plots and characters.