Study Guide

The Three Musketeers Chapter Sixty-Six: Execution

By Alexandre Dumas

Chapter Sixty-Six: Execution

  • This chapter beings with a description of the setting, which can be summed up in one word: sinister. There is a river in front, woods to the right, a broken mill on the left, and along the road are trees like "deformed dwarfs."
  • Mousqueton and Grimaud drag Milady along the road. She offers the two lackeys a thousand pistoles each to let her free, and warns that there are men nearby who would avenge her death.
  • Athos and de Winter realize what Milady is doing, and instruct Planchet and Bazin to take over.
  • On the banks of the river, the executioner binds her hands and feet. Milady chastises him: she is so strong-willed it takes ten men to tie this one woman down! (Athos, however, asserts that she’s a devil and doesn’t count as being a woman.)
  • Milady argues passionately that whoever kills her is an assassin. The man in the red cloak responds that an executioner may kill without being an assassin.
  • Milady shrieks that they are not judges.
  • De Winter says that he offered her Tyburn, (a village where criminals were executed), which she rejected.
  • Milady offers to become a nun. The executioner says she once was a nun, and then ruined his brother.
  • The executioner grabs her and carries her to the boat.
  • She cries out, asking if they are going to drown her.
  • Her cries affect D’Artagnan. He sits and hangs his head, then protests that he cannot bear it. Milady hears him and cries out that she once loved him.
  • D’Artagnan begins walking towards her, but Athos steps in front of him and warns him that if he continues, the two will have to fight.
  • D’Artagnan begins to pray.
  • Athos steps forward and pardons Milady.
  • De Winter pardons her.
  • D’Artagnan pardons her.
  • Athos hands the executioner some silver. The executioner throws it into the river to demonstrate that he isn’t doing it for the money.
  • The boat glides along the river and stops on the opposite bank.
  • Everyone is on their knees praying.
  • Milady manages to untie the cord fastening her feet. She gets out of the boat and runs.
  • She slips and falls to her knees, then stays there. The executioner raises his sword and finally does the deed.
  • He puts the body and the head into his cloak, gets back into the boat, and then throws the remains into the middle of the river.
  • Three days later the Musketeers arrive back in Paris. Tréville asks if they enjoyed their leave.
  • Athos says that they did.