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Athos, Porthos and Aramis

Athos

His full name was Armand de Sillègue d'Athos d'Autevielle. He was born in 1615 in Béarn and died on December 21st, 1643. He was the inspiration for Alexandre Dumas's fictional character, Athos.

Athos took his name from the small market town of Athos-Aspis on the Gave d'Oloron, close to Sauveterre-de-Béarn and Autevielle. As the youngest son of Adrien de Sillègue, Lord of Athos and Auteveille, he could not hope to be the future Lord of Athos and Auteville, as the title would pass to the eldest son. He therefore had the choice of entering the army or the church. He was the first cousin once removed of the Monsieur de Tréville, whose patronage enabled him to enter the Regiment of Musketeers in 1640, at the same time as Porthos. All we know of him is that he was a native of the Béarn, and that he died young, no doubt killed on the 21st of December, 1643, during a duel, as recorded in Births and Deaths Register of the Church of the Saint-Sulpice in Paris.

"Escort, service and burial of the late Armand Athos Dautebielle, Musketeer of the King's Guard, gentleman of Béarn, taken close to the Clerks Meadow market". As the "Pré au Clercs" or "Clerks Meadow", was a famous duelling place it is probable that he died there. Athos, by Jahyer SC.

Porthos

His real name was Isaac de Portau. He was born in Pau on the 2nd of February, 1617, but the date of his death is unknown. He was the inspiration for Alexandre Dumas's fictional character, Porthos.

He came from a Protestant Béarn family, originally from Gan. His father was Secretary to the King and the States of Navarre, and therefore an important person, who was able to buy lordships and to become ennobled.

Like Athos, Porthos decided to go into the army. He entered as a cadet in the Essarts Company of the French Guards. (François de Guillon, Lord of Essarts, was the brother-in-law of Monsieur de Tréville, who recommended him). He was therefore in the Company when d'Artagnan joined in 1640, and they campaigned together. We find him again in Perpignan in 1642 and then in Lyon. Porthos became a Musketeer in 1643, the same year as the death of Athos.

Then all trace of him is lost, and no-one knows what happened to him after, or the circumstances of his death. Porthos by Wattier

 

Aramis

Henri d'Aramitz or Aramis, born around 1620, was a lay abbot who inspired the fictional character of Aramis in the novel of Alexandre Dumas.

Like Porthos, Aramis came from a Béarnais Protestant family, but unlike the other Béarnais Musketeers he was of noble military stock. His grandfather, the Huguenot Captain, Pierre d'Aramitz, played a highly active role in the religious wars that wreaked havoc in the Béarn and the Soule at the time of Jeanne d'Albret. Married to Louise de Sauguis, daughter of a lay Abbot of Soule, Pierre had three children. Marie, the youngest, married to Jean du Peyrer in 1597, was the mother of Jean-Armand du Peyrer, the famous Count of Tréville, Captain Lieutenant of the Musketeers, born in Oloron in 1598. Charles, the younger brother, was the first to enter the Company of Musketeers commanded by his nephew since 1634. He married Marie de Rague, daughter of the lord of Espalungue, near Laruns. This union produced two daughters and a son, Henry, who was the inspiration for Alexandre Dumas's famous character. In May 1640, Henry d'Aramis became the second Musketeer in the family, along with his father who had become Marshal des Logis. Military archives have no mention of the service records of father and son, nor what became of them following the dissolution of their Company in 1646. In 1650, Henry, although a confirmed Protestant, married Jeanne de Béarn-Bonasse, from one of the highest Catholic families of Béarn. By H. Faxardo

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