By Alexandre Dumas
Alexandre Dumas (1802-1870) was one of the most famous French writers of the 19th century. Dumas is best known for historical adventure novels like The Three Musketeers and The Count of Monte Cristo, both written within the space of two years, 1844-45, and which belong to the foundation works of popular culture. He was among the first, along with Honor.
The Three Musketeers (serialized March – July, 1844): The year is 1625. The young D’Artagnan arrives in Paris at the tender age of 18, and almost immediately offends three musketeers, Porthos, Aramis, and Athos. Instead of dueling, the four are attacked by five of the Cardinal’s guards, and the courage of the youth is made apparent during the battle. The four become fast friends, and, when asked by D’Artagnan’s landlord to find his missing wife, embark upon an adventure that takes them across both France and England in order to thwart the plans of the Cardinal Richelieu. Along the way, they encounter a beautiful young spy, named simply Milady, who will stop at nothing to disgrace Queen Anne of Austria before her husband, Louis XIII, and take her revenge upon the four friends.