Dumas, Alexandre (fils)

BORN 28 Jul 1824, Paris - DIED 27 Nov 1895, Marly-le-Roi, Yvelines
GRAVE LOCATION Paris: Cimetière de Montmartre, 20 Avenue Rachel (division 21)

Illegitimate son of Alexandere Dumas, the famous author of many adventurous novels. His mother Marie-Catherine Labay was a dressmaker. His father formally recognized him in 1831 and he was taken away from his mother (who tried to run away with him).

He grew up in boarding schools, where he was pestered with his illegitimate birth. In 1844 he went to live with his father (who had divorced his wife) in Saint-Germain-en-Laye. He met the courtesan Marie Duplessis, who was his lover between September 1844 and August 1845. She died of tuberculosis on 3 Feb 1847 and was the inspiration for his successful novel "La Dame aux Camélias" (1848), that helped him pay off his debts and enabled him to support his mother financially.

The book was turned into a play that was first performed on 2 Feb 1852 and on which Verdi based his opera "La Traviata" (1853). In 1850 Lydie Zakrefsky, daughter of count Zakrefsky, became his mistress in Paris. His play "Le Demi-Monde" (1855) was eyed with suspicion because of it's portrayal of French society, but it was a success.

Dumas became friends with the writer Jules Vernes and introduced the latter to his future publisher Hetzel. In 1864 he married the Russian princess Nadeja Naryschkine. She had been his mistress for several years during her marriage to prince Alexander Grigorievich Narishkin and they already had a daughter, Colette, born in 1860. In 1867 another daughter was born, Jeanine.

In 1874 he was elected to the Académie Francaise. By then he had written many novels and plays and more were to follow. In 1894 he received the Légion d'Honneur. After Nadeja died in April 1895 he married his mistress of many years, Henriette Régnier in June 1895. He died six months later.

Novels: "Tristan le Roux" (1850); "Diane de Lys" (1853). Plays: "Le Fils naturel" (1858); "L'Étrangère" (1876); "Denise" (1885).

• Father: Dumas, Alexandre (père)

Related persons
• was a friend of Montigny, Adolphe
• was the lover of Plessis, Marie
• was a friend of Verne, Jules

2/2/1852Premiere of "La Dame Aux Camelias" by Alexandre Dumas fils at the Théâtre du Vaudeville. The play was an instant succes. Eugénie Doche played Marguerite Gautier and Charles Fecher was Armand Duval. Giuseppe Verdi soon set the story to music, resulting in his opera "La traviata" (1853). [Verdi, Giuseppe]
20/3/1855Premiere of "Le Demi-Monde" by Alexandre Dumas fils at the théâtre du Gymnase in Paris. Some of the actors who played in the piece were Berton, Villars, Dupuis, Figeac, Laurentine and Rose Chéri. [Chéri, Rose]
14/8/1857Alexandre Dumas fils is decorated by Napoleon III. Princess Mathilde wanted to introduce him to the emperor before the ceremony, but he refused, claiming to be too shy. [Napoleon III Bonaparte]
16/1/1858Premiere of "Le Fils naturel" by Alexandre Dumas fils at the Théâtre du Gymnase in Paris. The play featured Rose Chéri, Dupuis, Lagrange, Derval, Mademoiselle Mélanie and Geoffroy. [Chéri, Rose]


The grave of Alexandre Dumas fils at Montmartre Cimetière, Paris.
Picture by Androom (19 May 2005)


• Maurois, André, Les Trois Dumas, Hachette, Paris, 1957
Winkler Prins Encyclopedie (editie 1909), 1909
The Lady of the Camellias - Wikipedia
Alexandre Dumas (fils) — Wikipédia

Dumas, Alexandre (père)

Published: 01 Jan 2006
Last update: 28 Jan 2024