Carmen and Don Jos

Updated February 28, 2017 | Infoplease Staff

One of opera's most beloved love stories

by David Johnson

A story by French writer Prosper Mrime, Carmen is the basis for one of the best-loved operas.

Carmen was a fiery gypsy girl who worked in a cigar factory. An army officer, Don Jos, was called to the factory because a fight broke out. He arrested Carmen because she hit another woman. He became enchanted with the exotic Carmen, and let her escape.

Don Jos deserted the army and followed Carmen into the mountains. But the beautiful gypsy soon tired of the steadfast Don Jos, and she fell in love with Escamillo, a dashing bullfighter. Devastated, Don Jos confronted Carmen outside the bullring. As the crowd cheered Escamillo in the background, Don Jos stabbed Carmen to death.

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