Remarkable Books

The World's Most Beautiful and Historic Works

Author: DK

Publisher: Penguin

ISBN: 1465470883

Category: Art

Page: 256

View: 3614

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A beautifully illustrated guide to more than 75 of the world's most celebrated, rare, and seminal books and handwritten manuscripts ever produced, with discussions of their purpose, features, and creators. From ancient masterpieces such as The Art of War, written on the leaves of bamboo, to the stunningly illustrated Birds of America, to Chairman Mao's Little Red Book, Remarkable Books delves into the stories behind the most incredible tomes ever produced, offering an insight into their wider social and cultural context, and is chronologically ordered to demonstrate the synergies between the growth in human knowledge and the bookmaking process. Alongside breathtaking images of the books and manuscripts themselves, close-up views draw out interesting features, which are discussed in greater detail, while biographies tell the lives of the people who produced them.
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New World

Author: Park Benjamin,James Aldrich,Henry Champion Deming,James Mackay

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: N.A

Category:

Page: N.A

View: 8376

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Meetings with Remarkable Manuscripts

Author: Christopher de Hamel

Publisher: Penguin UK

ISBN: 0241003091

Category: Art

Page: 624

View: 2724

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'An endlessly fascinating and enjoyable book' Neil MacGregor 'Full of delights' Tom Stoppard An extraordinary exploration of the medieval world - the most beguiling history book of the year This is a book about why medieval manuscripts matter. Coming face to face with an important illuminated manuscript in the original is like meeting a very famous person. We may all pretend that a well-known celebrity is no different from anyone else, and yet there is an undeniable thrill in actually meeting and talking to a person of world stature. The idea for the book, which is entirely new, is to invite the reader into intimate conversations with twelve of the most famous manuscripts in existence and to explore with the author what they tell us about nearly a thousand years of medieval history - and sometimes about the modern world too. Christopher de Hamel introduces us to kings, queens, saints, scribes, artists, librarians, thieves, dealers, collectors and the international community of manuscript scholars, showing us how he and his fellows piece together evidence to reach unexpected conclusions. He traces the elaborate journeys which these exceptionally precious artefacts have made through time and space, shows us how they have been copied, who has owned them or lusted after them (and how we can tell), how they have been embroiled in politics and scholarly disputes, how they have been regarded as objects of supreme beauty and luxury and as symbols of national identity. The book touches on religion, art, literature, music, science and the history of taste. Part travel book, part detective story, part conversation with the reader, Meetings with Remarkable Manuscripts conveys the fascination and excitement of encountering some of the greatest works of art in our culture which, in the originals, are to most people completely inaccessible. At the end, we have a slightly different perspective on history and how we come by knowledge. It is a most unusual book.
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Katherine Swynford

The Story of John of Gaunt and His Scandalous Duchess

Author: Alison Weir

Publisher: Random House

ISBN: 0712641971

Category: Great Britain

Page: 384

View: 7976

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Katherine Swynford was first the mistress, and later the wife, of John of Gaunt, the Duke of Lancaster. Her charismatic lover was one of the most powerful princes of the fourteenth century and Katherine was renowned for her beauty and regarded as enigmatic, intriguing and even dangerous by some of her contemporaries. In this impressive book, Alison Weir has triumphantly rescued Katherine from the footnotes of history, highlighting her key dynastic position within the English monarchy. She was the mother of the Beaufort, then the ancestress of the Yorkist kings, the Tudors, the Stuarts and every other sovereign since - a prodigious legacy that has shaped the history of Britain.
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The Prophets

Who They Were, What They Are

Author: Norman Podhoretz

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

ISBN: 0743238605

Category: Religion

Page: 400

View: 4833

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A radical reinterpretation of the biblical prophets by one of America's most provocative critics reveals the eternal beauty of their language and the enduring resonance of their message. Long before Norman Podhoretz became one of the intellectual leaders of American neoconservatism, he was a student of Hebrew literature and a passionate reader of the prophets of the Old Testament. Returning to them after fifty years, he has produced something remarkable: an entirely new perspective on some of the world's best-known works. Or, rather, three new perspectives. The first is a fascinating account of the golden age of biblical prophecy, from the eighth to the fifth century B.C.E., and its roots in earlier ages of the ancient Israelite saga. Thus, like large parts of the Bible itself, The Prophets is a history of the Near East from the point of view of a single nation, covering not only what is known about the prophets themselves -- including Elijah, Amos, Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel -- but also the stories of King David, King Saul, and how the ancient Israelites were affected by the great Near Eastern empires that surrounded them. Layered into this work of history is a piece of extraordinary literary criticism. Podhoretz's very close reading of the verse and imagery used by the biblical prophets restores them to the top reaches of the poetic pantheon, for these books contain, unequivocally, some of the greatest poetry ever written. The historical chronicle and the literary criticism will transport readers to a time that is both exotic and familiar and, like any fine work of history or literature, will evoke a distinct and original world. But the third perspective of The Prophets is that of moral philosophy, and it serves to bring the prophets' message into the twenty-first century. For to Norman Podhoretz, the real relevance of the prophets today is more than the excitement of their history or the beauty of their poetry: it is their message. Podhoretz sees, in the words of the biblical prophets, a war being waged, a war against the sin of revering anything made by the hands of man -- in short, idolatry. In their relentless battle against idolatry, Podhoretz finds the prophets' most meaningful and enduring message: a stern warning against the all-consuming worship of self that is at least as relevant in the twenty-first century as it was three thousand years ago. The Prophets will earn the respect of biblical scholars and the fascinated attention of general readers; its observations will be equally valued by believers and nonbelievers, by anyone with spiritual yearnings. Learned, provocative, and beautifully written, The Prophets is a deeply felt, deeply satisfying work that is at once history, literary criticism, and moral philosophy -- a tour de force.
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