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Venice, A Maritime Republic Paperback – November 1, 1973
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Students now have an analysis of Venice's fortunes over the whole course of its independent history that they can trust... A crisp and clearly visualized narrative.(Times Literary Supplement)
The best one-volume history of Venice in any language.(American Historical Review)
An up-to-date and comprehensive history of Venice has long been needed, and Professor Lane, as the doyen of historians of Venice, was the obvious man to supply it.(J.H. Elliott New York Review of Books)
Frederic Lane has achieved what is the often unfulfilled dream of every historian who has devoted his entire work to the exploration of partial aspects of a single broad subject: he has given us a comprehensive, thoughtful, readable, beautifully illustrated general history of Venice from the origins to the beginning of decline.(Speculum)
Top Customer Reviews
However, the figures in this paperback edition of Lane are very poorly reproduced. The maps look like they were copied on a xerox machine, rendering the place names illegible. The photographs and depictions of period artwork are virtually unintelligible. Interested readers might be better served to seek out the hardcover edition.
Where the book does touch on wars and politics, it gives just enough details to bring the story alive, as in the gripping account of the War of Chioggia, an episode I had never heard of before but which would make a fantastic movie. The author makes very good choices for which topics to dwell on and which to summarize quickly. The prose is unremarkable but effective, and the B&W illustrations are interesting in themselves and well-integrated into the text (though as another review mentions some - but not all - of the illustrations are not very well reproduced in the paperback edition). Though the illustrations are in shades of gray, reading this book allows one to enter a colorful world where the myth and reality of Venezia grow through time.
The book chronicles its rapid ascent and ingenuity in being flexible about trading with anyone. The many sea battles also attest to its continued vigilance. Readers might note the resemblences to Britain and its empire.
The writing style is quite readable to a non-historian. Enhanced perhaps by a decision not to have footnotes. The illustrations are also well chosen.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The Venetian Republic endured as the most democratic experiment in Europe from its founding around 1000 AD until it was compelled to surrender to Napoleon and the French in 1797. Read morePublished 21 months ago by Christopher Kelly
Great book with lots of information and presented in clear and concise manner.Published 23 months ago by RKM
It goes through the history of Venice from the early inhabitants escaping the barbarian invaders to the destruction of the republic from Napoleon.Published on January 24, 2012 by Hektor Konomi