5 facts about… The Three Musketeers

New action-packed drama The Musketeers aired on BBC One earlier this month. The show, which stars the likes of Peter Capaldi and Tom Burke, was inspired by Alexandre Dumas's 1844 novel The Three Musketeers
5 facts about… The Three Musketeers
The Musketeers aired on BBC One on Sunday - image BBC/Steve Neaves

You might have read Dumas’s masterpiece, but did you know…

1) Many of the characters in the novel were real. Louis XIII, Anne of Austria, Cardinal Richelieu and Monsieur de Treville lived, and Athos, Porthos, and Aramis are based on real musketeers. Protagonist D'Artagnan was inspired by real life Charles de Batz-Castelmore, who worked under Mazarin and Louis XIV, the successors of Louis XIII and Cardinal Richelieu

2) The Three Musketeers was first published in serial form in the newspaper Le Siècle between March and July 1844

3) The story was inspired by a 17th-century work titled Memoires de d'Artagnan by Gatien de Cortilz de Sandras

4) In The Three Musketeers, Dumas fictionalises many of his father’s real-life exploits. Thomas-Alexandre Dumas was a black general in Revolutionary France, who was imprisoned for 20 months in a dungeon on the coast of Naples

5) Like the characters in his novel, Alexandre Dumas was a skilled fencer. He trained with the local fencing master in his hometown of Villers-Cotterêts, a village near Paris, and by the age of 10 went head-to-head with adults

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