C. Auguste Dupin

C. Auguste Dupin
The Purloined Letter.jpg
Auguste Dupin in "The Purloined Letter"
First appearance"The Murders in the Rue Morgue"
Last appearance"The Purloined Letter"
Created byEdgar Allan Poe
Information
GenderMale
OccupationDetective (hobbyist)
NationalityFrench

Le Chevalier C. Auguste Dupin [oɡyst dypɛ̃] is a fictional character created by Edgar Allan Poe. Dupin made his first appearance in Poe's "The Murders in the Rue Morgue" (1841), widely considered the first detective fiction story.[1] He reappears in "The Mystery of Marie Rogêt" (1842) and "The Purloined Letter" (1844).

Dupin is not a professional detective and his motivations for solving the mysteries change throughout the three stories. Using what Poe termed "ratiocination", Dupin combines his considerable intellect with creative imagination, even putting himself in the mind of the criminal. His talents are strong enough that he appears able to read the mind of his companion, the unnamed narrator of all three stories.

Poe created the Dupin character before the word detective had been coined. The character laid the groundwork for fictional detectives to come, including Sherlock Holmes, and established most of the common elements of the detective fiction genre.

Character background and analysis

Facsimile of Poe's original manuscript for "The Murders in the Rue Morgue", the first appearance of C. Auguste Dupin

Dupin is from what was once a wealthy family, but "by a variety of untoward events" has been reduced to more humble circumstances, and contents himself only with the basic necessities of life.[2] He now lives in Paris with his close friend, the anonymous narrator of the stories. The two met by accident while both were searching for "the same rare and very remarkable volume" in an obscure library.[3] This scene, the two characters searching for a hidden text, serves as a metaphor for detection.[4] They promptly move to an old manor located in Faubourg Saint-Germain. For hobbies, Dupin is "fond" of enigmas, conundrums, and hieroglyphics.[5] He bears the title Chevalier,[6] meaning that he is a knight in the Légion d'honneur. Dupin shares some features with the later gentleman detective, a character type that became common in the Golden Age of Detective Fiction.[citation needed] He is acquainted with police prefect "G", who appears in all three stories seeking his counsel.

In "The Murders in the Rue Morgue", Dupin investigates the murder of a mother and daughter in Paris.[7] He investigates another murder in "The Mystery of Marie Rogêt". This story was based on the true story of Mary Rogers, a saleswoman at a cigar store in Manhattan whose body was found floating in the Hudson River in 1841.[8] Dupin's final appearance, in "The Purloined Letter", features an investigation of a letter stolen from the French queen. Poe called this story "perhaps, the best of my tales of ratiocination".[9] Throughout the three stories, Dupin travels through three distinct settings. In "The Murders in the Rue Morgue", he travels through city streets; in "The Mystery of Marie Rogêt", he is in the wide outdoors; in "The Purloined Letter", he is in an enclosed private space.[10]

Dupin is not actually a professional detective, and his motivations change through his appearances. In "The Murders in the Rue Morgue", he investigates the murders for his personal amusement, and to prove the innocence of a falsely accused man. He refuses a financial reward. However, in "The Purloined Letter", Dupin purposefully pursues a financial reward.[11]

Other Languages
asturianu: C. Auguste Dupin
azərbaycanca: Ogüst Düpen
čeština: C. Auguste Dupin
euskara: August Dupin
français: Auguste Dupin
hrvatski: Auguste Dupin
italiano: Auguste Dupin
Nederlands: C. Auguste Dupin
português: C. Auguste Dupin
русский: Огюст Дюпен
slovenščina: Auguste Dupin
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: C. Auguste Dupin