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Dumas and his Lady of Montsoreau: the truth behind the fiction

The castle | Declaudure / CC-BY-SA
Castle of the Loire Valley Castle Homicide Adultery Alexandre Dumas Montsoreau castle

Poisoned peach

But a drama took place here in 1472… Nicole de Chambes, lord of Montsoreau's widow, often hosted his lover, duke of Guyenne. She encouraged him to wage war against his own brother, king Louis XI. The lady and her lover died in horrible pains, poisoned...

Dumas and his lady of Montsoreau

In the 16th century, Charles de Chambes learned his wife Françoise had a love affair with Louis de Clermont de Bussy d'Amboise, governor of Anjou.

This one was murdered by the husband’s henchmen… Famous French author Dumas popularized this drama in his novel La dame de Monsoreau (″Montsoreau’s Lady″). But he get the fiction and the reality all muddled up!

Under his quill, Françoise de Chambes became Diane de Méridor, Charles de Chambes' wife, count of Montsoreau.

Her lover was murdered by the jealous husband, yes he was, but the tragedy didn’t take place in Montsoreau! No it did not, but in the neighbour castle of La Coutancière.

And in the real story, the couple made peace, even had 6 kids… and lived 40 years together!

Their last son, René de Chambes, became lord of Montsoreau in 1619: a period chronicle described him as a violent chap, a counterfeiter. King Henri IV sentenced him to death, but he took French leave in England, where he died in 1649!

About the the author

I'm fond of strolls and History, with juicy and spicy details!