© 2014 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.
The Man in the Iron Mask

The Man in the Iron Mask

by Alexandre Dumas

Friendship Theme

Friendship is the backbone of The Man in the Iron Mask, but it rapidly disintegrates throughout the book. The four men, once bound by their motto of "all for one and one for all," have grown apart from one another. Political, familial, and career motivations threaten the once inseparably loyal friends. Their friendship was once very simple. Now it is complicated.

Questions About Friendship

  1. Is Aramis a good friend? How would Fouquet answer that question? How would Porthos answer that question?
  2. At what point has the legendary friendship between D'Artagnan, Athos, Porthos, and Aramis broken up for good? Did you notice that the four of them are never once in this novel in the same place together? (This is a big deal – these guys used to be so attached that their nickname was "the Inseparables.")
  3. Why does Aramis willingly tell Athos the situation, but hold back from telling Porthos?
  4. How is friendship defined in The Man in the Iron Mask?

Chew on This

Try on an opinion or two, start a debate, or play the devil’s advocate.

Aramis is a horrible friend to Porthos.

Fouquet's friends display the truest form of friendship to be found in the novel.

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement