Alexandre Dumas:
A Collection dedicated to his work

On 27th September, Artcurial’s Books & Manuscripts department will auction an exceptional collection of over 240 works by Alexandre Dumas gathered by collectors Geneviève and Jean-Paul Kahn.

More than 80 novels will be on sale, as well as plays, tales, short stories, travelogues and historical essays: Alexandre Dumas’ sprawling work is almost impossible to gather in its entirety. Geneviève and Jean-Paul Kahn, who are also known for their keen eye for the surrealist movement, have nevertheless succeeded in bringing together a significant collection of Dumas’ works.

These include many published works, such as le Vicomte de Bragelonne, estimated €10,000 – 15,000, as well as several manuscripts, particularly relating to his Garibaldi epic, including La Vérité sur l’affaire d’Aspromonte, estimated €6,000 – 8,000. The collection also includes some exceptional lots: the only copy of the Grand dictionnaire de cuisineon parchment, estimated €20,000 – 25,000, a monumental work on gastronomy and the last book by Dumas whose existence was doubted by bibliographers, and the first edition of Les Trois mousquetaires, in a contemporary binding, estimated €10,000 – 15,000. Also on display is the magnificent calligraphic manuscript of L’Alchimiste, a drama in five acts written with Gérard de Nerval, estimated €60,000 – 80,000, illustrated with paintings by Isabey, Masson, Dauzats, Boulanger and Dupré and presented to Tsar Nicholas I of Russia.


Exemplaire manuscrit de présent au tsar de Russie Nicolas Ier
Alexandre Dumas (1802-1870)
L’Alchimiste, 1839
Handwritten present to Tsar Nicholas I of Russia
Estimate: €60,000 – 80,000


The collection also includes a series of works by Alexandre Dumas Fils (son), including the celebrated Dame aux camélias, estimated €5,000 – 6,000. Born in 1824 to an unknown father, and only recognised by Dumas in 1831, Alexandre Dumas Fils never recovered from his illegitimate birth. All his work, both novels and plays, bore the mark of this original flaw, and he never ceased to deal with adultery, divorce, seduced and abandoned women, “natural” children and the search for paternity. The sale will also present a damning picture of the social condition of women in the second half of the 19th century, with a gradual shift towards feminism. His books also betray, between resentment and love, the son’s feelings for his father.



Browse Catalogue


From 22nd to 26th September 2023


27th September – 2.30pm


Frédéric Harnisch
Tél. +33 1 42 99 16 49