Alexander Dumas’ The Count of Monte Cristo is established upon historical events and political intrigue. He not just uses historical facts to help the reader comprehend, he also weaves such information into the story to make it possible for his reader to have an understanding of the current events that were occurring in France, throughout that time (from approx. 1815 through 1838). Dumas would want his readers to be knowledgeable about French history, and to have it in their mind as they read his beloved tale.
In the 1800’s Marseilles was among the biggest ports in the south of France with a “population in between 93,000 and 110,000”, therefore trade grew and it was house to lots of merchants, and services (Marseilles). This is where our story of revenge starts. Marseilles was the home town of Edmond who we meet as a naïve sailor who is later on to end up being sent to prison as a political bad guy, and modified for life. Marseilles was also the house to both Edmond’s father who passes away of appetite right after his kid was locked up, and Edmonds gorgeous, and honorable fiancé Mercedes who was a poor, Catalan. After Dantes’ jail time Mercedes looked after his father until he passed. She despaired of Dantes ever being released from jail and back by her side, there for she felt she had no option however to marry Fernand Mondego when he asked for her hand in marriage. Fernand Mondego was the envious angler who also betrayed Dantes due to the fact that he too was in love with Mercedes.
Mondego saw, and seized the opportunity to prevent their love for one another. Military success brought Mondego a fortune, which enabled him to alter his name to Count de Morcef, making Mercedes the Countess. The Morrel family (the owners of the ship, Pharaon), were also homeowners of Marseilles. Mr. Morrel felt a good deal of compassion for Dantes’ household which forced him to not just invest with terrific effort, his time and money in an effort to keep Dantes from an un-warranted life in prison however, he also spent for Dantes’ father’s burial. The cards were stacked against Dantes, and even with the support of M. Morrel, his future was composed. When Edmond left from prison he visited M. Morrel who remained in the depths of despair, and pondering ideas of suicide due to the fact that he could no longer support him self financially.
Dantes seeing him as a righteous guy who had actually once gone to fantastic lengths, and knowing the efforts taken by Morrel in effort to conserve him from prison, Dantes felt compelled, and anonymously made a monetary contribution to Morrel, which, conserved him from ruin. While Dantes never ever revealed himself as the contributor Morrel suspected that it was he, and on his deathbed Morrel discusses to his household that he thinks that their finical rescuer was certainly Edmond Dantes. The district attorney of Marseilles, who was eventually accountable for Dantes’ imprisonment, was Monsieur de Vellefort. Vellefort’s daddy was a known Bonapartist. Vellefort who disagreed with his dad’s position, and as the district attorney decidedly took an exceptionally harsh stance on his policy in dealing with Bonapartist conspirators. Vellefort looked for to protect his own name by positioning Edmond in jail as a political conspirator due to the fact that he knew, and feared the letter Dantes brought might be traced back to his (Vellefort’s) dad so, he utilized his power in a misguided manor to which he would later on suffer at the hands of Dantes.
Danglars was a male driven by non-other than jealousy who likewise resided in Marseilles at the time. He abhored that Dantes had been advanced to Captain of the Pharaon rather of him, and looked for a plot in which Dantes might be captured with the letter to stain his name, leaving Danglar’s the only choice to fill his function as captain. After Edmond’s imprisonment Danglars indeed became the captain and eventually graduated his position to a banker. As a lender he was able to obtain an incredible fortune where he then became a Baron. In the end Monte Cristo destroyed Danglars by destroying his fortune. Dumas intentionally produced each of these characters to have beginning in a position of poverty, revealing us how they were either villainous in their increase to fortune, and would ultimately be destroyed by Dantes’vengeance.
Or, Dumas showed the character to be virtuous with their fortune, and power ultimately to be conserved, or spared by our protagonist. He also showed us these characters progression from the bottom of the socioeconomic structure, eventually flourishing into wealth, their bye showing us, [the reader] there were no misgivings of old cash or new throughout these times in France. Each of these characters rose in the echelons, and were afforded the capability to get a title and were able re-create themselves within society in a way to which they considered worthy of their generated fortunes. This ability for one to rather obtain a title offers us an excellent sense of the modifications that were happening during that time, it was no longer about being of royal blood that gave you credibility, or worthiness, but about how difficult one worked to advance themselves and get their fortune.
In the opening scenes of the story Danglars, who is the ships “supercargo” reports to the ships owner once they docked in Marseilles, that Edmond, acting on what was the last passing away desire of his captain, had stopped at the island of Elba to retrieve a letter that was resolved to Noirtier (Dumas 5). In fulfilling his captains last dyeing dream, Edmond’s unknowingly retrieved a letter from Napoleon personally, making it appear as though he was conspiring with the then exiled Napolean, which he himself was a Bonapartist. Napoleon had been a soldier and then went on to end up being Emperor of France in the early 1800’s. It sought the Reign Of Terror that Napoleon was chosen Very first consul of France. Napoleon made many great changes for his country. He brought much required structure back to France.
He began by executing much better education, settling France’s financial obligation, and changing the structure of his army. He enabled not only the upscale to increase within the ranks, but paying for the impoverished the exact same chance of development within the ranks as they showed their worth, and showcased their skills. Napolean’s army was no longer based upon economic stature, however one that afforded an equivalent playing field to every guy (as long as they were anglo). Napoleon also used this very same thought procedure into the civilian realm of France too. In an attempt to broaden France’s territory he invaded Russia. This intrusion turned out to be among Napoleon’s greatest defeats. During this fantastic siege Napoleon was out steered by Russia’s Alexander I, this led to a defeat, and a loss of nearly 500,000 French soldiers.
Not long after he stepped down as consul and was eradicated to the island of Elba. During this time, there were people who still liked and supported what he had done for France; these individuals were considered to be Bonapartist’s. There were likewise members of the French nobility (and much of Europe’s) who disliked Napoleon, they wanted absolutely nothing more than to see him removed; they called themselves royalists. Dumas desired this clearly specified so the reader would feel the internal power battle between Bonapartist and Royalists.
One of these royalists was a man called Villefort. He happened to be the district attorney Edmonds faced in Marseilles. Villefort understood full well that Edmond was an innocent man, and not a Bonapartist, but made a calculated choice to protect his own aspirations, since it was his (Villefort’s) daddies name that was discussed in the letter that Edmonds had returned from Napoleon. His dad was a recognized Bonapartist, so in an effort to reveal assistance to the royalists, and put a damper on the Bonapartist efforts, Villefort secretly sentenced Edmond to the political prison of Chateau d’if.
Dantes was thrown into Chateau d’ if, and forgotten for fourteen years. Throughout the first few years of his jail time Dantes’ dad died of starvation, and Mercedes wed Fernand; both of which he is entirely unaware of. As time passed he ended up being a growing number of delusional, and even started to contemplate suicide. All the while, his former employer Morrel made efforts to locate Dontes in an attempt to attempt to have him launched, however was not able to discover his area. The Chateau d’if, where our fictional character Dantes was locked up, was in reality a real jail fortress. It was “developed by the French King Francis I in 1524” on an island in the bay around one mile off the coast of Marseille (Chateau d’if). It’s was originally designed and was meant to be a defense mechanism against would be opponents of Marseille, but quickly ended up being the home to, “3,500 Huguenots (French Protestants) who made their keep as galley servants”(Marseille-Provence).
This rocky, beach front setting is where Edmond Dantes was destined carry out his baseless sentence, and spent fourteen long years of his life; just a stone get rid of from Marseille, yet no one might locate him. A lot of the chateau’s real guests appear to have had the common style of being unwarranted prisoners. It was not uncommon throughout the time for individuals to be “put behind bars without trial under so-called lettres de cachet, supposedly signed by the King, for minor misdemeanors (a popular tactic used by rich households to eliminate unruly offspring without causing a public scandal)”(Marseille-Provence). Surprisingly enough, among Napoleons Civil Codes necessitated it legal for a dad to lock up a child for as much as 1 month. Much of the Chateau’s occupants were lost in the shuffle, and secured for as long as the family preferred. This island for misfits, and undesirable loved ones is also the area where Dantes befriends Abbe Faria, who was also a political detainee.
The two detainees meet when the Abbe was trying to tunnel his way to flexibility; however, a miscalculation brought him straight into Dantes’ cell, instead of out to the freedom he had preferred. The 2 recently found good friends invested the next few years passing their time. Abbe devoted himself to the job of informing Dantes in science, literature languages. He also assists Dantes figure out whom it was that played essential parts, and were supreme duty lie for his imprisonment. At some point Abbe began to think of Dantes as the boy he never ever had, and confided in Dantes the location to the covert fortune. Together the two began preparing their daring escape, knowing all the while that any escape strategy would be difficult, if not impossible due to the truth that the prison is totally surrounded by water, and much of the island had vertical cliff walls that would raise the likelihood of injury if not death, while escaping. Thankfully for the pair, they had nothing but time.
During this period in France, prisoners with wealth and title (like the Abbe) might ask for specific items to make their stay a bit more comfy. The Abbe utilized this to their benefit, and was able to buy some tools and trinkets for his cell. The very same reason Abbe was able to purchase trinkets is the factor Edmond had none; he was broke, and unable to acquire items. This was likewise quite indicative of the times; if you were greater up in society, you had the ability to purchase more advantages in jail, as well as in life. The Abbe passed away before the two had the ability to act out their escape strategy. Believing rapidly on his feet, Dantes had the ability to change his own body in the Abbe’s body bag, solidifying his own escape.
The hopes Dantes held onto, which drove him to be triumphant in his escape were gone. When he did lastly acquire his liberty he was faced with the reality that his liked ones were either dead, or had actually proceeded, and it was no longer a possibility to be a part of their life, or the one that he had left. He was a male who needs to decide what it was he was going to end up being, and do with the life that he gained back. During this time it is made clear that Dantes was dealing with his purpose in life, and felt lost. It was stated that he felt, “that he belongs to no nation, no land, even to the point where he feels more at ease while on the ocean” (D’Ammassa). While contemplating what he was to end up being and what to do with his life, now that he was a totally free male Dantes invested some time onboard a ship as a smuggler in the Mediterranean. Where he might confront his sensations, and decide what is was he wished to do.
Throughout one such smuggling trip Dantes had the chance to go to the Island of Monte Cristo where he resigned his position a smuggler and proceeded to discover the treasure Abbe entrusted him with. The Island of Monte Cristo is undoubtedly a real island. It is located in the “Island Chain Toscano National Park” but, is not accessible to people and is now an animal haven (Montercristo Island). It is presumed that Dumas had visited this remote island in 1842 and believed it ideal for the usage as the setting in one of his novels; nevertheless, the real island bears little resemblance to the one portrayed in his tale. In the story Edmond finds the treasure that Abbe Faria entrusted to him, on this island. The resources from the treasure will eventually enable him the opportunity to manifest himself into a count, and start his climb into righting the wrongs done unto him.
Once his see to the island of Monte Cristo has actually ended he proceeds to Rome where he remains for a while renewing himself in high end hotels, and taking stunning women to the opera. During his stay there Dantes satisfied Valentine, Villefort’s child; this act strikes home deep within Dantes and stimulates his retribution into action. Dantes also meets Albert de Morcerf in Rome, where he aides in Alberts release from abductors. To return this life conserving favor Dantes asks Albert to acquaint him with the Parisian aristocrats. For those of us with a hunger for a terrific vengeance book, this is where you can feel the plot start to thicken, and Dumas has you browsing the pages. With Albert as his guide, Dantes makes his way to Paris where the intrigue heightens as Dantes began to choose off his prey one by one.
During the time when Dumas’ tail was released, Paris was the city center of France, 600,000 people lived there. It was the mecca for European culture, and sciences, and likewise where a lot of Dumas’ readers would have lain making Paris an apparent choice to set such a tale; the sale of his works to readers in the city were flourishing. Paris was left in disarray till Napoleon ended up being first consul. At which time he began to re-model the city, providing it qualities you might have seen in a more approximately date Rome.
He included sewers, sidewalks bridges, and wharves. These additions not only caused a better economy, but much better living conditions for lots of. This city loaded with Parisian culture was likewise where the Villefort, the Morcerf, and the Danglars families had all settled. These households moved to Paris, and with their freshly gotten wealth began lavishing them selves in a life of high-end. When in Paris, and with assistance the Count discovers his way into the middle of each of the families, ending up being a most welcome visitor. It is from this calculated position that Dantes is able to initiate his plan and ultimately unravel the successes, and happiness of each of the males who had at one time or another plotted versus him.
Dumas, had the ability to offer his reader an understanding of the setting in The Count of Monte Cristo with ease, he simply embellished upon of the historic occasions that were happening before his eyes. Dumas expertly tied together the political battle between Napoleon and the Royalists. By expounding upon popular, and heavily populated cities such as Marseille, he had the ability to bestow a little history, and broaden his reader’s minds, while also adventuring with them to separated, unsafe locations like the Chateau d’if and even Monte Cristo Island. He solidifies the intrigue, risk, and of course revenge in his literary work of art, which makes certain to continue to mesmerize readers for lots of generations to come.
Functions Pointed out
“Chateau d’If”. Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica Online.
Encyclopedia Britannica Inc., 2012. Web. 21 Nov. 2012
This short article describes Chateau d’if the small Mediterranean island off the port of Marseille. I
intend to have the ability to give a more precise advancement of the scene where Dumas’ primary
character spent a great portion time. This short article originated from the Encyclopedia Britannica
D’Ammassa, Don. “The Count of Monte Cristo.” Encyclopedia of Experience Fiction. New York:
Truths On File, Inc., 2008. Bloom’s Literary Referral Online. Truths On File, Inc. 15