London, Nov 15 : In a quest to locate the tomb of d'Artagnan, an inspiration for Alexandre Dumas's novel 'The Three Musketeers', Dutch archaeologists have discovered a small church - where they believe the adventurous hero is buried.
He died during the Siege of Maastricht on June 25, 1673.
According to a leading French historian, Charles de Batz de Castelmore d'Artagnan, who served Louis XIV as captain of the Musketeers of the Guard, was buried a few kilometres away at Saint Peter and Paul Church in Wolder, Holland.
"The trail is very precise," Times Online quoted Odile Bordaz, author of several works on the musketeer.
She has marked down theories that d'Artagnan's body was brought back to France, and has been insisting the Dutch authorities and the Catholic Church to approve an archaeological dig of the site.
According to recently discovered documents, during the siege, bodies of French officers were buried in the nearest Catholic Church.
"I would rate the chance of success at 50/50. But it would be wonderful to find him. It's like a police inquiry," she added.
Dumas had written The Three Musketeers in 1844 after reading about d'Artagnan's exploits in Les Memoires de Monsieur d'Artagnan, which was published almost 150 years earlier.
Bordaz also said that d'Artagnan reputation as a lady-killer was absolutely right
"The musketeers and their officers led joyous lives and multiple conquests not only on the battlefield but also in the secret of the alcoves," she said.