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Until the mids, life in France remained unsettled, with sporadic riots by disgruntled Republicans and impoverished urban workers seeking change. As life slowly returned to normal, the nation began to industrialise.
An improving economy combined with the end of press censorship made the times rewarding for Alexandre Dumas' literary skills. After writing additional successful plays, Dumas switched to writing novels.
Although attracted to an extravagant lifestyle and always spending more than he earned, Dumas proved to be an astute marketer. As newspapers were publishing many serial novels, in , Dumas rewrote one of his plays as his first serial novel, Le Capitaine Paul. He founded a production studio, staffed with writers who turned out hundreds of stories, all subject to his personal direction, editing, and additions.
From to , Dumas, with the assistance of several friends, compiled Celebrated Crimes , an eight-volume collection of essays on famous criminals and crimes from European history.
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The story is written as Grisier's account of how he came to witness the events of the Decembrist revolt in Russia. The novel was eventually banned in Russia by Czar Nicholas I , and Dumas was prohibited from visiting the country until after the Czar's death. Dumas depended on numerous assistants and collaborators, of whom Auguste Maquet was the best known.
It was not until the late twentieth century that his role was fully understood. Maquet took Dumas to court to try to get authorial recognition and a higher rate of payment for his work.
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He was successful in getting more money, but not a by-line. Dumas' novels were so popular that they were soon translated into English and other languages. His writing earned him a great deal of money, but he was frequently insolvent, as he spent lavishly on women and sumptuous living. Scholars have found that he had a total of 40 mistresses. It was often filled with strangers and acquaintances who stayed for lengthy visits and took advantage of his generosity.
Two years later, faced with financial difficulties, he sold the entire property. Dumas wrote in a wide variety of genres and published a total of , pages in his lifetime. As Bonaparte disapproved of the author, Dumas fled in to Brussels , Belgium, which was also an effort to escape his creditors. About , he moved to Russia , where French was the second language of the elite and his writings were enormously popular. Dumas spent two years in Russia and visited St. Petersburg, Moscow, Kazan, Astrakhan and Tbilisi, before leaving to seek different adventures.
He published travel books about Russia. Dumas travelled there and for the next three years participated in the movement for Italian unification. He founded and led a newspaper, Indipendente. While there, he befriended Giuseppe Garibaldi , whom he had long admired and with whom he shared a commitment to liberal republican principles as well as membership within Freemasonry. Despite Dumas' aristocratic background and personal success, he had to deal with discrimination related to his mixed-race ancestry.
In , he wrote a short novel, Georges , that addressed some of the issues of race and the effects of colonialism.
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His response to a man who insulted him about his African ancestry has become famous. Dumas said:. My father was a mulatto , my grandfather was a Negro, and my great-grandfather a monkey. You see, Sir, my family starts where yours ends. She had performed her sensational role in Mazeppa in London. In Paris, she had a sold-out run of Les Pirates de la Savanne and was at the peak of her success.
These women were among Dumas' nearly 40 mistresses found by scholar Claude Schopp, in addition to three natural children. Dumas's " The Count of Monte Cristo " contains several references to hashish. His death was overshadowed by the Franco-Prussian War. Changing literary fashions decreased his popularity. In the late twentieth century, scholars such as Reginald Hamel and Claude Schopp have caused a critical reappraisal and new appreciation of his art, as well as finding lost works. Frank Wild Reed — , the older brother of Dunedin publisher A.
Reed , was a busy Whangarei pharmacist who never visited France, yet he amassed the greatest collection of books and manuscripts relating to Dumas outside France. It contains about volumes, including some sheets in Dumas' handwriting and dozens of French, Belgian and English first editions. This collection was donated to Auckland Libraries after his death.
With you, we were D'Artagnan, Monte Cristo, or Balsamo, riding along the roads of France, touring battlefields, visiting palaces and castles—with you, we dream. His novels have been translated into nearly languages. In addition, they have inspired more than motion pictures. Dumas described a fictional character killing Lord Nelson Nelson was shot and killed by an unknown sniper. Writing and publishing the novel serially in , Dumas had nearly finished it before his death. It was the third part of the Sainte-Hermine trilogy.
The Complete Celebrated Crimes
Claude Schopp, a Dumas scholar, noticed a letter in an archive in that led him to discover the unfinished work. It took him years to research it, edit the completed portions, and decide how to treat the unfinished part. Schopp finally wrote the final two-and-a-half chapters, based on the author's notes, to complete the story. Translated into English, it was released in as The Last Cavalier , and has been translated into other languages.
Schopp has since found additional material related to the Saints-Hermine saga. Schopp combined them to publish the sequel Le Salut de l'Empire in Dumas is briefly mentioned in the film The Shawshank Redemption. The inmate Heywood mispronounces Dumas' last name as "dumbass" as he files books in the prison library. Dumas is briefly mentioned in the film Django Unchained. The Southern slaveholder Calvin Candie expressed admiration for Dumas, owning his books in his library and even naming one of his slaves D'Artagnan.
He is surprised to learn from another white man that Dumas had black ancestry.
Celebrated Crimes (Complete) (PDF, Kindle & Audiobook)
Alexandre Dumas wrote numerous stories and historical chronicles of high adventure. They included the following:. The Valois were the royal house of France from to , and many of Dumas romances cover their reign. Traditionally, the so-called "Valois Romances" are the three that portray the Reign of Queen Marguerite , the last of the Valois:. The Marie Antoinette romances comprise eight novels. The unabridged versions normally chapters or more comprise only five books numbers 1,3,4,7 and 8 ; the short versions 50 chapters or less number eight in total:. Although best known now as a novelist, Dumas first earned fame as a dramatist.
It had fifty performances over the next year, extraordinary at the time. Dumas wrote many plays and adapted several of his novels as dramas. Dumas was a prolific writer of nonfiction. He wrote journal articles on politics and culture and books on French history. His lengthy Grand Dictionnaire de cuisine Great Dictionary of Cuisine was published posthumously in A combination of encyclopaedia and cookbook, it reflects Dumas' interests as both a gourmet and an expert cook.
An abridged version the Petit Dictionnaire de cuisine , or Small Dictionary of Cuisine was published in Alexandre Dumas in his library, by Maurice Leloir. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Dumas, in fact, wrote his 'Crimes Celebres' just prior to launching upon his wonderful series of historical novels, and they may therefore be considered as source books, whence he was to draw so much of that far-reaching and intimate knowledge of inner history which has perennially astonished his readers. The Crimes were published in Paris, in , in eight volumes, comprising eighteen titles—all of which now appear in the present carefully translated text.
The success of the original work was instantaneous. Dumas laughingly said that he thought he had exhausted the subject of famous crimes, until the work was off the press, when he immediately became deluged with letters from every province in France, supplying him with material upon other deeds of violence! The subjects which he has chosen, however, are of both historic and dramatic importance, and they have the added value of giving the modern reader a clear picture of the state of semi-lawlessness which existed in Europe, during the middle ages. Space does not permit us to consider in detail the material here collected, although each title will be found to present points of special interest.
The first volume comprises the annals of the Borgias and the Cenci. The name of the noted and notorious Florentine family has become a synonym for intrigue and violence, and yet the Borgias have not been without stanch defenders in history His works have been translated into nearly languages, and he is one of the most widely read French authors. His novels have been adapted since the early twentieth century for nearly films.
Dumas' last novel, The Knight of Sainte-Hermine, unfinished at his death, was completed by a scholar and published in , becoming a bestseller. It was published in English in as The Last Cavalier.