René d'Herblay 'Aramis' is a fictional character in the novels "The Three Musketeers", "Twenty Years After" and "The Vicomte de Bragelonne" by Alexandre Dumas, père. He and the other two musketeers Athos and Porthos are friends of the novel's protagonist, d'Artagnan.

The fictional Aramis is loosely based on the historical musketeer Henri d'Aramitz whose name comes from the French village now named Aramits.


Aramis loves intrigues and women, which fits well with the opinions of the time regarding Jesuits and abbots. As a musketeer, his great ambition was to become an abbé; as an abbé he wishes for the life of the soldier.

Aramis seems to be followed by luck, but it is never enough; every step forward must be used to climb to even greater power. This characteristic leads to his nomination as Superior General of the Jesuits, which is precisely what saves his life, at the end of "Le Vicomte De Bragelonne", after he is betrayed by Nicolas Fouquet.

Despite his Machiavellian attitude, Aramis holds very firmly to the sacred concept of friendship. In fact, the only wrong moves Aramis has ever made were done when he refused to harm a friend (or a friend's feelings). In "Twenty Years After", he followed Athos's pleas to spare Mordaunt, while he was holding him at gunpoint and, in "Le Vicomte De Bragelonne", he refused to suppress d'Artagnan, when he discovered the truth about Belle-Ile-En-Mer, and he let Fouquet betray him, instead of assassinating him. Aramis even tells the truth to Porthos about the man in the iron mask's real identity, despite fearing that Porthos would kill him. Friendship is so important to Aramis that it is strongly implied, at the end of "Le Vicomte De Bragelonne", that he cried (for the first time in his entire life) when one of his friends died. Later, he explicitely told someone that he considered him a true friend.

At the time of the Three Musketeers, ca. 1627, Aramis was largely dependent on gold from wealthy mistresses to survive, as military pay was low and infrequent.

Use of first name

In contrast to the other musketeers, Aramis is referred to by his first name twice by Dumas: he is christened René. We hear this name when d'Artagnan stumbles upon him and his mistress in the second book (in the chapter: Les Deux Gaspard), and again when Bazin is talking about Aramis in the third. In "Twenty Years After" he is a Jesuit known as the Abbé d'Herblay as well as Chevalier d'Herblay. In "The Vicomte de Bragelonne" he is known as the Bishop of Vannes, a title given to him by Nicolas Fouquet and later he became the Superior General of the Jesuits. When he comes back from exile, he is a Spanish noble and known as Duke of Alameda.

In film and television

Actors who have played Aramis on screen include:
*Harold M. Shaw, in "The Three Musketeers: Parts I and II" (1911)
*C.N. Mortensen, in "The Three Musketeers " (1916)
*Pierre de Guingand, in "Les trois mousquetaires" (1921)
*Eugene Pallette, in "The Three Musketeers" (1921)
*Gino Corrado, in "The Iron Mask" (1929)
*Jean-Louis Allibert, in "Les Trois Mousquetaires" (1933)
*Onslow Stevens, in "The Three Musketeers" (1935)
*John ‘Dusty’ King, in "The Three Musketeers" (1939)
*Robert Coote, in "The Three Musketeers" (1948)
*Keith Richards, in "The Three Musketeers" (1950)
*Judd Holdren, in "Lady in the Iron Mask" (1952)
*Jacques François, in "Les Trois Mousquetaires" (1953)
*Paul Hansard, in "The Three Musketeers" (1954)
*Paul Campbell, in "The Three Musketeers" (1956) and "Le Avventure dei tre moschettieri" (1957)
*Tim O'Connor, in "The Three Musketeers" (TV movie) (1960)
*Jaques Toja, in "Les Trois Mousquetaires: La Vengeance de Milady" (1961) and "Les Trois Mousquetaires: Les Ferrets de la Reine" (1961)
*Roberto Risso, in "D’Artagnan contro i tre moschettieri" (1963)
*Gary Watson, in "The Three Musketeers" (1966)
*John Woodvine, in "The Further Adventures of the Three Musketeers" (1967)
*Roger Sterckx, in "Die Drie Musketiers" (1968)
*Colin Fox, in "The Three Musketeers" (1969)
*Georges Mansart, in "Les Quatre Charlots Mousquetaires" (1971)
*Richard Chamberlain, in "The Three Musketeers" (1973), "The Four Musketeers" (1974), and "The Return of the Musketeers" (1989)
*Igor Starygin, in "D'Artanyan i Tri Mushketyora" (1978), "Mushketyory 20 let spustya" (1992), and "Tayna Korolevy Anny ili Mushketyory 30 Let Spustya" (1993)
*Lloyd Bridges, in "The Fifth Musketeer" (1979)
*Eiko Yamada, in "Anime San Jushi" (1987)
*Charlie Sheen, in "The Three Musketeers" (1993)
*Sami Frey, in "Revenge of the Musketeers" (1994)
*Jeremy Irons, in "The Man in the Iron Mask" (1998)
*Thomas Beckett, in "Three Musketeers" (1999)
*Callum Blue, in "Young Blades" (2001)
*Nick Moran, in "The Musketeer" (2001)
*Allan Corduner, in "La Femme Musketeer" (TV miniseries) (2003)
*Grégori Derangère, in "D'Artagnan et les trois mousquetaires" (2005)

In anime

* In the anime version, Aramis is a woman who cross-dressed into a man in order to become a musketeer. Aramis' love of the arts in the original novel influenced the producers of the Japanese cartoon series to change the character's gender. In addition, it added a romantic angle within the series.

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