Actor, Lover, Priest, SpyBook - 2008
In Casanova, noted author Ian Kelly traces the life of Giacomo Casanova, a man whose very name is synonymous with sensuality, seduction and sexual prowess. But Casanova was more than just a great lover. A businessman, diplomat, spy, and philosopher, he authored more than twenty books, including a translation of The Iliad. Confidant to many infamous characters—including Madame de Pompadour, Voltaire, and Catherine the Great—Casanova was undoubtedly charismatic. But how exactly did he seduce himself into infamy?
In this richly drawn portrait, Casanova emerges as very much a product of eighteenth-century Venice. He reveled in its commedia del arte and Kelly posits that his successes as both a libertine and a libertarian grew from his careful study of its artifice and illusion. Food, travel, sex: Casanova’s great passions are timeless ones and Kelly brings to life in full flavor the grandeur of his exploits. He also articulates the fascinating personal philosophy that inspired Casanova’s quest to bed all manner of women.
A riveting look at the life of the most legendary lover of all time, this is destined to become the definitive biography of Giacomo Casanova.
Baker & Taylor
A chronology of the iconic romantic figure seeks to reveal lesser-known facts about his life behind his mythical persona as a great lover, in an account that traces his work as a diplomat, writer, and confidant of such figures as Madame de Pompadour, Voltaire, and Catherine the Great. 15,000 first printing.
Blackwell North Amer
Giacomo Casanova was one of the most beguiling and controversial individuals of his or any age. Braggart or perfect lover? Con man or genius?
He made and lost fortunes, founded state lotteries, wrote forty-two books and 3,600 pages of memoirs recording the tastes and smells of the years before the French Revolution - as well, of course, as his affairs and sexual encounters with dozens of women and a handful of men. His energy was dazzling.
The historian Ian Kelly draws on previously unpublished documents from the Venetian Inquisition, and documents by Casanova and his friends and lovers, which give new insights into his life and world. Kelly's research spans eighteenth-century Venice, Paris, St. Petersburg, Moscow, Home, Prague, and the Czech castle where Casanova lived, wrote, and died.
From his devotion to Kabbalah to his Collaboration with Mozart and librettist Da Ponte on the opera Don Giovanni, from his vast appetite for food and sex to his training for the priesthood, Casanova here emerges as very much a product of eighteenth-century Venice. He reveled in the commedia dell'arte, and Kelly posits that Casanova's successes as both a libertine and a libertarian grew from his careful study of its artifice and illusion.
This is the story of a man, but also of the book he wrote about himself. His own memoirs have brought him two centuries of notoriety. They have also changed forever the way we think about ourselves - and about sex. At the same time that revolutions - scientific, industrial, political, and artistic - remade the world in the eighteenth century, Casanova created an intimate and exhaustive study of what he saw as the most revolutionary article of all - himself.
Offers lesser-known facts about Casanova's life behind his mythical persona as a great lover, in an account that traces his work as a diplomat, writer, and confidant of such figures as Madame de Pompadour and Catherine the Great.