* Site-Outage Notice: Our engineering elves will be tweaking the Shmoop site from Monday, December 22 10:00 PM PST to Tuesday, December 23 5:00 AM PST. The site will be unavailable during this time.
© 2014 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.
The Man in the Iron Mask

The Man in the Iron Mask

by Alexandre Dumas

The Man in the Iron Mask Themes

Little Words, Big Ideas


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...


There are many different types of love in The Man in the Iron Mask, and all forms of it act as powerful motivators for the characters involved. The first type of love in the novel is the love the f...

Memory and the Past

Throughout the novel, the four friends are haunted by their past as four young and courageous men. The past in The Man in the Iron Mask is thus held dear as it embodies the age of romantic chivalry...


Family in The Man in the Iron Mask does not present a reliable bond. In many ways, friends are more important than family in The Man in the Iron Mask. An exception to this claim, however, concerns...


Honor is the governing code of conduct for all men in The Man in the Iron Mask, and it determines whether or not the four Musketeers will be on your side. In order to be honorable, the men sometime...

Old Age

The four Musketeers from Dumas' The Three Musketeers are all grown up, and The Man in the Iron Mask deeply reflects that fact. Everything is more complicated for our heroes than it used to be, mean...


In The Man in the Iron Mask, loyalties are continually being pitted against each other. Characters in the novel are always expected to first and foremost be loyal to the King, but this requirement...

Justice and Judgment

Justice in this novel is whatever the King says it is, which of course makes us wonder exactly how just the system is. Unlike what we saw in The Three Musketeers, justice in The Man in the Iron Mas...

People who Shmooped this also Shmooped...

Noodle's College Search