25.06.

Musketeer d’Artagnan shot in the throat (1673)

Musketeer d’Artagnan shot in the throat (1673)

The famous character d’Artagnan of the Three Musketeers is based on a real historical figure. It was Charles Ogier de Batz, Count d’Artagnan, born in the French province of Gascony. The Gascons were known among the French as stubborn and somewhat savage. They are descendants of the Basque people, probably the oldest indigenous European people, whose language is unlike any other European language.

D’Artagnan had a military career in the French Royal Guard, and was later promoted to Musketeer, an even more elite unit within the French Royal Court. Namely, the Musketeers were in charge of the personal safety of the French king when he was outside the residence, ie on a trip or in battle (security inside the residence was taken care of by two units – the Body Guard and the Swiss Guard, the latter still have popes). King Louis XIV, also called the Sun King, entrusted d’Artagnan in 1661 with the important task of arresting the powerful minister Nicolas Fouquet. Namely, Fouquet was the famous French Minister of Finance, who built the magnificent Vaux-le-Vicomte castle. When the king saw this castle, which surpassed all the royal courts in splendor, he concluded that Fouquet was stealing it, i.e. that he was taking money from the state treasury.

D’Artagnan arrested the minister and watched over him for 4 years, until he was convicted and put in prison. It is thought that Fouquet could be the mysterious Man with the Iron Mask from French stories. D’Artagnan was killed during the siege of the city of Maastricht, where he fought heroically at the head of the musketeers. A bullet fired from an enemy musket hit him in the throat and took his life.

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