Alexandre Dumas, fils

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Alexandre Dumas

Russian: Александр Дюма, French: Alexandre Dumas, fils
Also Known As: "Alexandre Dumas the son", "Александр Дюма-сын", "Александър ДЮМА-син"
Birthdate: (71)
Birthplace: Paris, Ile-de-France, France
Death: November 27, 1895 (71)
Marly-le-Roi, Ile-de-France, France
Place of Burial: Paris, France
Immediate Family:

Son of Alexandre Dumas, père and Marie Laure Catherine Labay
Husband of Nadjeschda von Knorring and Henriette Régnier Dumas
Father of Colette Dumas; Jeanine Dumas; Сипион Александър Dumas and <private> Dumas
Half brother of Marie-Alexandrine Dumas; Micaëlla Clélie Josepha Élisabeth Cordier and Henri Bauër

Occupation: Writer, novelist, playwright
Managed by: Henn Sarv
Last Updated:

About Alexandre Dumas, fils

Alexandre Dumas, fils (27 July 1824 – 27 November 1895) was a French author and dramatist. He was the son (fils) of Alexandre Dumas, père, also a writer and playwright.

Dumas was born in Paris, France, the illegitimate child of Marie-Laure-Catherine Labay (1794-1868), a dressmaker, and novelist Alexandre Dumas. During 1831 his father legally recognized him and ensured that the young Dumas received the best education possible at the Institution Goubaux and the Collège Bourbon.

At that time, the law allowed the elder Dumas to take the child away from his mother. Her agony inspired Dumas fils to write about tragic female characters. In almost all of his writings, he emphasized the moral purpose of literature and in his play The Illegitimate Son (1858) he espoused the belief that if a man fathers an illegitimate child then he has an obligation to legitimize the child and marry the woman.

Dumas' paternal great-grandparents were a French nobleman and a Haitian woman. In boarding schools, Dumas fils was constantly taunted by his classmates. These issues all profoundly influenced his thoughts, behaviour, and writing.

During 1844 Dumas moved to Saint-Germain-en-Laye to live with his father. There, he met Marie Duplessis, a young courtesan who would be the inspiration for his romantic novel The Lady of the Camellias (La Dame aux camélias), wherein Duplessis was named Marguerite Gauthier. Adapted into a play, it was titled Camile in English and became the basis for Verdi's 1853 opera, La Traviata, Duplessis undergoing yet another name change, this time to Violetta Valery.

Although he admitted that he had done the adaptation because he needed the money, he had a great success with the play. Thus began the career of Dumas fils as a dramatist, which was not only more renowned than that of his father during his lifetime but also dominated the serious French stage for most of the second half of the 19th century. After this, he virtually abandoned writing novels (though his semi-autobiographical L'Affaire Clemenceau (1867) achieved some solid success).

On 31 December 1864, in Moscow, Dumas married Nadjeschda von Knorring (1826 – April 1895; daughter of Johan Reinhold von Knorring and widow of Alexander, Prince Naryschkine). The couple had two daughters: Marie-Alexandrine-Henriette Dumas, born 20 November 1860, who married Maurice Lippmann and was the mother of Serge Napoléon Lippmann (1886–1975) and Auguste Alexandre Lippmann (1881–1960); and Jeanine Dumas (3 May 1867–?), who married Ernest d' Hauterive (1864–1957), son of George Lecourt d' Hauterive and wife (married in 1861) Léontine de Leusse. After Nadjeschda's death, Dumas married in June 1895 Henriette Régnier de La Brière (1851–1934), without issue.

During 1874, he was admitted to the Académie française and in 1894 he was awarded the Légion d'honneur.

Alexandre Dumas fils died at Marly-le-Roi, Yvelines, on November 27, 1895 and was interred in the Cimetière de Montmartre in Paris. His grave is, perhaps coincidentally, only some 100 metres away from that of Marie Duplessis.

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Alexandre Dumas, fils's Timeline

July 27, 1824
Paris, Ile-de-France, France
November 20, 1860
Age 36
Moscow, Russia
May 3, 1867
Age 42
November 27, 1895
Age 71
Marly-le-Roi, Ile-de-France, France
Paris, France