The Man in the Iron Mask (French: L'Homme au Masque de Fer; c. 1640 – 19 November 1703) is the name given to an unidentified
prisoner who was arrested in 1669 or 1670 and subsequently held in a number of French prisons, including the Bastille and the Fortress of Pignerol (modern Pinerolo,
Italy). Recent research suggests that his name might have been "Eustache Dauger", but this still has not been completely proven. He was held in the custody of
the same jailer, Bénigne Dauvergne de Saint-Mars, for a period of 34 years. He died on 19 November 1703 under the name "Marchioly", during the reign of Louis
XIV of France (1643–1715). Since no one ever saw his face because it was hidden by a mask of black velvet cloth, the true identity of the prisoner remains a
mystery; it has been extensively debated by historians, and various theories have been expounded in numerous books and films.