The Man in the Iron Mask

Alexandre DUMAS (1802 - 1870)

In this, the last of the Three Musketeers novels, Dumas builds on the true story of a mysterious prisoner held incognito in the French penal system, forced to wear a mask when seen by any but his jailer or his valet. If you have skipped the novels between The Three Musketeers and this, a few notes will bring you into the story:

On one side – Aramis, now a bishop and secretly the Captain-General of the Jesuit Order, who believes he has found a path to a higher honor – the papacy. Monsieur Fouquet, the vastly rich minister of finance, Aramis’ ally. Philippe, the identical twin of King Louis XIV, who grew up in ignorance of his pedigree, and whose surrogate parents were murdered on the king’s order and himself sent into the notorious Paris prison, the Bastille, there held in solitary confinement.

On the other side – King Louis XIV, selected as the twin who would be king by his mother, and who intends that his brother will never challenge him. Monsieur Colbert, first minister, who is jealous of Fouquet and plots his downfall.

Unaligned and in danger of collateral damage – d’Artagnan, now captain of the King’s Musketeers and so the king’s chief defender, who suspects plots running beneath the surface and who is trying to unearth them. Athos, now the Comte (Count) de la Fer and one of the most respected noblemen of France. Raoul, Athos’ son and vicomte (viscount), desperately in love with Mademoiselle de la Valliere, who the king has taken as his mistress. Porthos, grown extremely stout and happy as the Baron du Vallon.

Aramis discovers the hidden Philippe and hatches a plot to substitute him for the sitting king, putting Louis in Philippe’s cell in the Bastille. This even succeeds… for a short while. But Aramis has not reckoned with a man whose loyalty to the throne exceeds his own welfare and who disastrously reverses the plot. Now it is time for the plotters to scurry to cover, there to figure some way to recover their lost ambitions. (Summary written by Mark Smith.)

Genre(s): Literary Fiction

Language: English

Group: d'Artagnan Romances (in English translation)

Section Chapter Reader Time
Play 00 00 - Introduction Mark F. Smith
00:17:48
Play 01 01a – The Prisoner (Part 1) Mark F. Smith
00:33:54
Play 02 01b – The Prisoner (Part 2) Mark F. Smith
00:33:57
Play 03 02 – How Mouston Had Become Fatter Mark F. Smith
00:19:33
Play 04 03 – Who Messire Percerin Was Mark F. Smith
00:15:51
Play 05 04 – The Patterns Mark F. Smith
00:24:22
Play 06 05 – Where, Probably, Moliere Obtained His First Idea of the Bourgeois Gentilhomme Mark F. Smith
00:15:08
Play 07 06 – The Bee-Hive, the Bees, and the Honey Mark F. Smith
00:22:27
Play 08 07 – Another Supper at the Bastille Mark F. Smith
00:17:51
Play 09 08 – The General of the Order Mark F. Smith
00:21:12
Play 10 09 – The Tempter Mark F. Smith
00:22:12
Play 11 10 – Crown and Tiara Mark F. Smith
00:19:45
Play 12 11 – The Chateau de Vaux-le-Vicomte Mark F. Smith
00:13:17
Play 13 12 – The Wine of Melun Mark F. Smith
00:13:29
Play 14 13 – Nectar & Ambrosia Mark F. Smith
00:11:17
Play 15 14 – A Gascon, and a Gascon and a Half Mark F. Smith
00:30:41
Play 16 15 – Colbert Mark F. Smith
00:15:37
Play 17 16 – Jealousy Mark F. Smith
00:16:14
Play 18 17 – High Treason Mark F. Smith
00:23:17
Play 19 18 – A Night at the Bastille Mark F. Smith
00:17:26
Play 20 19 – The Shadow of Monsieur Fouquet Mark F. Smith
00:41:12
Play 21 20 – The Morning Mark F. Smith
00:21:05
Play 22 21 – The King’s Friend Mark F. Smith
00:41:22
Play 23 22 – Showing How the Countersign Was Respected at the Bastille Mark F. Smith
00:18:55
Play 24 23 – The King’s Gratitude Mark F. Smith
00:20:42
Play 25 24 – The False King Mark F. Smith
00:24:58
Play 26 25 – In Which Porthos Thinks He Is Pursuing a Duchy Mark F. Smith
00:13:05
Play 27 26 – The Last Adieux Mark F. Smith
00:13:08
Play 28 27 – Monsieur de Beaufort Mark F. Smith
00:20:45
Play 29 28 – Preparations for Departure Mark F. Smith
00:21:05
Play 30 29 – Planchet’s Inventory Mark F. Smith
00:13:19
Play 31 30 – The Inventory of Monsieur de Beaufort Mark F. Smith
00:15:17
Play 32 31 – The Silver Dish Mark F. Smith
00:18:27
Play 33 32 – Captives and Jailers Mark F. Smith
00:23:21
Play 34 33 – Promises Mark F. Smith
00:28:58
Play 35 34 – Among Women Mark F. Smith
00:20:59
Play 36 35 – The Last Supper Mark F. Smith
00:17:20
Play 37 36 – In Monsieur Colbert’s Carriage Mark F. Smith
00:18:59
Play 38 37 – The Two Lighters Mark F. Smith
00:17:52
Play 39 38 – Friendly Advice Mark F. Smith
00:14:14
Play 40 39 – How the King, Louis XIV, Played His Little Part Mark F. Smith
00:20:13
Play 41 40 – The White Horse and the Black Mark F. Smith
00:18:57
Play 42 41 – In Which the Squirrel Falls, the Adder Flies Mark F. Smith
00:24:40
Play 43 42 – Belle Isle-en-Mer Mark F. Smith
00:23:59
Play 44 43 – Explanations by Aramis Mark F. Smith
00:26:54
Play 45 44 – Result of the Ideas of the King & the Ideas of D’Artagnan Mark F. Smith
00:06:39
Play 46 45 – The Ancestors of Porthos Mark F. Smith
00:10:18
Play 47 46 – The Son of Biscarrat Mark F. Smith
00:14:28
Play 48 47 – The Grotto of Locmaria Mark F. Smith
00:15:28
Play 49 48 – The Grotto Mark F. Smith
00:20:12
Play 50 49 – An Homeric Song Mark F. Smith
00:12:46
Play 51 50 – The Death of a Titan Mark F. Smith
00:16:09
Play 52 51 – Porthos’ Epitaph Mark F. Smith
00:17:05
Play 53 52 – Monsieur de Gesvre’s Round Mark F. Smith
00:14:02
Play 54 53 – Louis XIV Mark F. Smith
00:20:20
Play 55 54 – Monsieur Fouquet’s Friends Mark F. Smith
00:16:48
Play 56 55 – Porthos’ Will Mark F. Smith
00:14:46
Play 57 56 – The Old Age of Athos Mark F. Smith
00:13:58
Play 58 57 – Athos’ Vision Mark F. Smith
00:15:59
Play 59 58 – The Angel of Death Mark F. Smith
00:13:16
Play 60 59 – The Bulletin Mark F. Smith
00:15:41
Play 61 60 – The Last Canto of the Poem Mark F. Smith
00:15:31
Play 62 61a – Epilogue (Part 1) Mark F. Smith
00:31:30
Play 63 61b – Epilogue (Part 2) Mark F. Smith
00:31:42