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Sunday, 9 November 2014

Alexandre Dumas

Alexandre Dumas was born in Paris, France on July 24, 1802. He was the grandson of a woman slave from the Saint Domingue island (later renamed, Haiti), where his French father was born in 1762, and lived a large part of his life.

Dumas was afraid of travelling to the USA because he feared because of his background of being sold into slavery.

Photograph: Nadar Wikipedia

Dumas wrote in a wide variety of genres and published a total of 100,000 pages in his lifetime.

Dumas married actress Ida Ferrier (born Marguerite-Joséphine Ferrand) (1811–1859) on February 1, 1840. He had numerous liaisons with other women and was known to have fathered at least four children by them.

The Three Musketeers was first published in serial form in the magazine Le Siècle between March and July 1844.

The story of d'Artagnan is continued in Twenty Years After and The Vicomte de Bragelonne. Those three novels by Dumas are together known as the D'Artagnan Romances.

In March 1861 the kingdom of Italy was proclaimed, with Victor Emmanuel II as its king. Dumas traveled there and, for the next three years, participated in the movement for Italian unification. He founded and led a newspaper, Indipendente.

Alexandre Dumas had cats called Mysouff I & II; #2 was black & white and Dumas' favorite, even though it once ate all his exotic birds.

Dumas was a member of the Club des Hashischins, or Hashish Club. This group of French writers experimented with hashish to get ideas.

A gourmet, Dumas often prepared his own salads seasoned with almond milk, a liqueur or champagne.

Dumas loved melons so much, he once proposed to give to the municipal council of Cavaillon all of his present and future publications in exchange for "a life annuity of twelve melons per year."

A few weeks before his death Alexandre Dumas completed his 1152 page Grand Dictionnaire de Cuisine.

Alexandre Dumas died on December 5, 1870. His death was overshadowed by the Franco-Prussian War - changing literary fashions having decreased his popularity.

Dumas later in his career

Dumas' last novel, The Knight of Sainte-Hermine, unfinished at his death, was completed by a scholar and published in 2005, becoming a bestseller. It was published in English in 2008 as The Last Cavalier.

Sources Wikipedia, Food For Thought by Ed Pearce

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