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Levant: Splendour and Catastrophe on the Mediterranean Hardcover – May 24, 2011

4.5 out of 5 stars 50 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"I could scarcely put down this magnificent book, with its galloping narrative, its worldly analysis, sparkling anecdotes and its unforgettable cast of the decadent, the cosmopolitan, and the cruel."—Simon Sebag Montefiore, Financial Times
(Simon Sebag Montefiore Financial Times)

"[A] highly enjoyable and intricately-worked account of three great Mediterranean ports."—The Economist
(The Economist)

"This is a rich piece of historical storytelling that will satisfy scholars, travelers, readers of travel literature, and everyone in between, Highly recommended for anyone with an interest in this complicated region of the world."—Veronica Arellano, Library Journal
(Veronica Arellano Library Journal)

Levant is an eminently readable and authoritative work that speaks directly to present-day anxieties, both about the nature of today’s western multicultural cities, and about current tensions between nations and religions.”-- Roderick Beaton, King's College London
(Roderick Beaton)

"An extraordinary achievement. Passionate but impartial, animated, sensual and scholarly. "--Barnaby Rogerson, auhor of The Last Crusaders


(Barnaby Rogerson)

“This book is a labour of love and finely tuned scholarship, ornamented with such telling social detail and intimate knowledge of the urban and social landscapes that it brings 300 years of history to entertaining life…Philip Mansel slowly makes the reader aware that the grand theme of his history is a slow unfolding tragedy which remains absolutely relevant to today’s multicultural societies, engaged as they are in the delicate balancing act between political unity and cosmopolitan diversity…not only an entertainment and a historical education but also something of a political warning…”—Barnaby Rogerson, Times Literary Supplement
(Barnaby Rogerson Times Literary Supplement)

“Philip Mansel's Levant: Splendour and Catastrophe in the Mediterranean is a remarkable, highly unusual and very readable social history of the ports of Smyrna, Beirut and Alexandria during the final decades of the Ottoman Empire.”—Lev Myshkin, Global Dispatches
(Lev Myshkin Global Dispatches)

"The strengths of the book are colossal. Philip Mansel’s knowledge of the history and culture of these places is encyclopedic; he has walked their streets, met the scions of their famous families and penetrated their private archives. His eye for detail is sharp; telling anecdotes are culled from memoirs of all kinds, and the sights and smells of each city are vividly conjured up."—Noel Malcolm, Telegraph (Noel Malcolm Telegraph)

About the Author

Philip Mansel is a historian of France and the Ottoman Empire. His publications include histories of Constantinople and nineteenth-century Paris, as well as biographies of Louis XVIII and the Prince de Ligne. While writing Levant, he lived in Beirut and Istanbul.


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Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ 0300172648
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Yale University Press (May 24, 2011)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 470 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 9780300172645
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0300172645
  • Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 1 pounds
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 6.13 x 1.25 x 9.25 inches
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.5 out of 5 stars 50 ratings

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4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5
50 global ratings
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5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful writer, clear concise
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Eva Walters
4.0 out of 5 stars A very interesting assessment of the cities of a bygone age.
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