Venice by Garry Wills
Lion City- The Religion of Empire

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Synopsis

Garry Wills's Venice: Lion City is a tour de force -- a rich, colorful, and provocative history of the world's most fascinating city in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, when it was at the peak of its glory. This was not the city of decadence, carnival, and nostalgia familiar to us from later centuries. It was a ruthless imperial city, with a shrewd commercial base, like ancient Athens, which it resembled in its combination of art and sea empire.

Venice: Lion City presents a new way of relating the history of the city through its art and, in turn, illuminates the art through the city's history. It is illustrated with more than 130 works of art, 30 in full color. Garry Wills gives us a unique view of Venice's rulers, merchants, clerics, laborers, its Jews, and its women as they created a city that is the greatest art museum in the world, a city whose allure remains undiminished after centuries.

Like Simon Schama's The Embarrassment of Riches, on the Dutch culture in the Golden Age, Venice: Lion City will take its place as a classic work of history and criticism.
 

About Garry Wills

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GARRY WILLS has written many acclaimed works and is a regular contributor to The New York Review of Books. He is professor emeritus of history at Northwestern University and lives in Evanston, Illinois.
 
Published May 28, 2013 by Washington Square Press. 416 pages
Genres: History, Religion & Spirituality, Education & Reference, Arts & Photography, Travel. Non-fiction

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“As federal buildings in the United Stated have pictures of the current president in courts and bureaus, the administrative offices of the Venetian republic had large heraldic paintings of the lion of Venice as certifications of their authority,” writes Wills.

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Publishers Weekly

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What Simon Schama's An Embarrassment of Riches did for Renaissance Holland, Wills—prolific author, historian, translator and critic (<EMPHASIS TYPE=I

Jul 02 2001 | Read Full Review of Venice: Lion City- The Religi...

The New York Times

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Garry Wills's excellent new book about Venice is not about the Venice of indolent pleasures and tourism.

Sep 30 2001 | Read Full Review of Venice: Lion City- The Religi...

Publishers Weekly

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(Sept.)Forecast:While the cognoscenti will seek out McCarthy or Norwich for more commanding views on the same material, Wills's book will be the prevailing popular history of the sinking city for the foreseeable future, sought out pre-trip by the thinking hordes who descend yearly.

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The New York Review of Books

A third charge against Tintoretto is that he was pushy enough to apply to himself Paolo Pino’s 1548 claim that the ideal art would combine “the form of Michelangelo and the color of Titian.” It is probably false that he put that slogan on his studio wall;

Jul 14 1994 | Read Full Review of Venice: Lion City- The Religi...

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