Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Happy birthday, Alexandre Dumas

It is the birthday of French writer Alexandre Dumas (1802), whose novels, The Three Musketeers (1844), Twenty Years After (1845), The Count of Monte Cristo (1845-46) and The Vicomte de Bragelonne: Ten Years Later (1847), are read throughout the world. He is one of the most widely known French authors ever. His major works have been adapted for almost 200 movies. Dumas also wrote travel books and plays. In recent times, scholars have discovered unpublished works by Dumas, including The Last Cavalier (2006). Dumas, a man of huge appetite, is said to have had 40 mistresses, and fathered at least four illegitimate children. Dumas' grandmother was an Afro-Caribbean slave, his grandfather a French nobleman who lived in Haiti. Dumas suffered racial prejudice and wrote about it in Georges (1843). In 2002, on Dumas' 200th birthday, French President Jacques had his ashes buried at the Pantheon of Paris next to Victor Hugo and Emile Zola.

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