Seven Ages of Paris (E–pub READ) Õ Alistair Horne
Folk og røvere i Kardemomme by yIncredibly disappointing While this book is marketed as popular introduction to Parisian history perhaps something lively to read before a vacation the This book is thoroughly readable andet ultimately disappointing I opened it expecting an account of how Paris came to take on its current form Horne does discuss this of course But his main focus is military and political history a series of rulers great and petty who march across the stage of history usually bringing war in their wake Horne s prose is engaging and smooth and he vividly captures the drama of rebellions bringing war in their wake Horne s
is engaging and smooth he VIVIDLY CAPTURES THE DRAMA OF REBELLIONS captures the drama of rebellions and plots but as a result the descriptions of Paris itself were superficial and vagueEven so I did learn a good deal about the city s history especially the nineteenth century But I think the book could have been far better if less exciting had Horne focused on the city itself rather than the belligerent leaders for whom it served as a backdrop The final impression left by Horne s book is of a city whose streets run red with blood since he focuses so insistently on the admittedly many instances of the French slaughtering one another As if the tourist did not have enough to worry about already MehIf Pure Excitement you re looking for a history of Paris I wonder if perhaps one would just do better getting one of the excellent books on the history of France This book is an aging British scholar s love letter to Paris and it read that way My pre modern knowledge of Paris is weak so I enjoyed that part of the book However my recent history is fairly good and there the book really failed There were a few too many throw away descriptive adjectives the Pompidou is an eyesore possibly Gertrude Stein was dumpy relevant howJosephine Baker was a superb animal from the jungle there are no words The author showed sympathy towardoung German soldiers suffering cold shoulders and hostile looks in wartime Paris than to French women who became Army nurses many joined looking for adventure I m waiting for the evidence on this thanks or to those Jews who managed to make it back from concentration camps only to find their property and possessions gone barely discussed Last I would perhaps not call the 1968 Belleville Jewish Muslim violence a fracas this had far geopolitcal significance than thatThere are some entertaining anecdotes this would be a useful book if Auksaviriai I d you had to deliver a lecture on French history and needed some good stories to spice things up Who knew that in the early 1900s German officers in France were prohibited from doing the Tango in uniform Or that French women got 8 weeks of maternity leaveVery little however is translated or explained Don t know the significance of the events at Mers el Kebir Be prepared to look them upOverall well see my first sentence I both read and listened to this book over a time period of several weeks and to me a person who is unfamiliar with a great deal of European history I found it to be a great look at Paris through time I expected it might be a stodgy read but it was surprisingly opinionated and gossipy with lots of little stories that make the people and the movements and the city feel three dimensional Reading this book with its huge backdrop of centuries with the strong leaders and the ridiculously ineffective leaders with its wars with its dramatic governmental changes it was oddly calming to read this history during a time of a pandemic with horrific challenges to democracy here in America reminding me to persevere just as Paris has done I really liked this survey of French history enclosed by its impact on the city of Paris itself The Seven Ages trope exists to focus on the highlights of that history though other eras are discussed when necessary In reality it is a history of France in seven major eras supplemented by the development and building of the city of Paris itself This book is forou if The Gentle Art of Tramping you want to read about French history with an emphasis on how the landmarks of Paris itself were conceived built rebuilt and sometimes destroyed It is useful to have a street and arrondissement map of Paris to consult ifou haven t lived there or aren t very familiar with the areas and streets of the city It was written by an older historian but it reads with great care and emphasis on the idea of France as a person so in a way it is a biography of a city as the capital of a country I learned a lot and it was precisely the type of book I was looking for Probably for those with a moderate knowledge of those subjects but it would certainly illuminate a future visitor s experience by reading it This book is a real mediocrity I m living in Pa. In this luminous portrait of Paris celebrated historian Alistair Horne gives us the history culture disasters and triumphs of one of the world’s truly great cities Horne makes plain that while Paris may be many things it is never boringFrom the rise of Philippe Auguste through the reigns of Henry IV and Louis XIV who abandoned Paris for Versail.
Prose Is Engaging And Smooth
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Ris for a few months so it seemed only reasonable to read a book that is a history of Paris Well this isn t it What this is is a history of political events in France and the impact of those events on the rulers of Paris and to some extent the ordinary middle class and poor You learn very little of the changes in the governmental structure the organization of the food supply the periods of architectural change isn t that what a history of a city would tell ou about Instead the author manages to pack in every bit of gossip he can imagine about the monarchs and generals We read that Henry IV smelled bad but had many lovers I suppose that s interesting We only learn of the architectural style associated with his
Reign In PassingIf You Just Want An Fashi This Reviewin passingIf ou just want an fashi This review Others Can Be others can be at Book ReviewsFor me this book was a great big ball of meh I got it from a bookstore because I thought it sounded fascinating A historian telling me what he thinks the seven ages of Paris were and what happened during those ages Fascinating A social history in a way all focused on certain ages he noticed through his ears of studyThat wasn t this book If anyone knows of a book like that please hit me up I think another reviewer said it best This book is an aging British scholar s love letter to Paris and it read that way He focused on the rulers and the politics of their reign not the experiences of the people in Paris Instead of a social history it was a political history And that made it super boring since it focused on the various rulers rather than what the people feltI found it pretty boring and watered down by the opinions of an aged historian Such as he loved assuming the sexuality of various rulers And he s using a definition of homosexuality that was created in the 1800s and applying it to people who were around centuries before it was created So that s a bad thing to do as a historian You don t apply modern terms to historical people As an example I wouldn t call Joan of Arc transgender because that term wasn t a thing back then even though she shows some signs of it That s not the best example but it s one I could come up with You just don t do that as a historian And he labeled multiple people as homosexual when they had relationships with women and some of them actually had kids Yeah He called them homosexual when they were at best bisexualThen he had a bias against Marie Antoinette and he made so many other snide comments that I became exasperated Great he has an opinion but they re not backed up by history And it felt like this was as the reviewer before me put it a love letter to Paris It was terribly boring Especially since Paris isn t my favorite city in the worldIn short I wouldn t recommend this book It s readable and somewhat interesting at times but it wasn t what I was looking for I should have read some reviews before I went and bought this one but I m glad it s off my TBR a marvelous summary of the history of Paris I read the section on the Nazi occupation which was excellent 3 stars Very generous Instinct told me do not read in chrono order So I began with the 6th Age which begins w La Belle Epoue and covers W1 and moves into the 7th Age W2 and ends c 1969 Instinct was kerect Author Horne in 400 pages condenses centuries of French history and shows the importance of good writing and selectivity of material Reading about what I knew fairly well enabled me to consider what he was up toYes he writes damn well but why can t I remember anything vital Is it important to learn that Josephine Baker danced wearing only a crotch feather and had a boff w author Georges Simenon Or that Nijinsky may have performed at least once minus a jockstrap I do like the Sacha Guitry uote The burdens of marriage are too heavy to be borne by two people alone In the 7th Age when author turns to post war2 culture and his researchers fail him here he ignores the New Wave cinema revolution with an off hand line or two which dismays me as this had a profound effect on La La Land Belmondo at this time was on the cover of LIFE for god s sake in a French movie That Man from Rio He was followed by Jeanne Moreau on the cover of TIME 1965 Very rare kudos Blinkered author gives a mild hiccough over the disastrous building of La Tour Montparnasse started in 1959 and finished in 1973 that famously obscene skyscraper in the middle of the Left Bank a ghastly blight on the Paris he claims to love so well At this point I thought Aw piss off Mr Horne I do not believe he loves ParisSo I dutifully returned to the beginning Age 1 1180 1314 and plodded along cranky but Les; Napoleon’s rise and fall; Baron Haussmann’s rebuilding of Paris at the cost of much of the medieval city; the Belle Epoue and the Great War that brought it to an end; the Nazi Occupation the Liberation and the postwar period dominated by de Gaulle Horne brings the city’s highs and lows savagery and sophistication and heroes and villain. Urious He stays very chatty and is never hesitant to repeat a
Like Paris Is Paris is a Here I reuired a double vodka martini He mostly delivers political strategems betrayals deceits wars slaughters royal mistresses bastards and the stench of Paris sewage It wasn t until the 1970s that every hotel room had a wc and many apartments too Aah the necessity of perfume so important I ponderedwell he didn t Bidet anyoneAuthor Horne likes Henry IV reign 1572 1610 who was stabbed to death by a Catholic crackpot in his open coach during a traffic jam Mull that Henry was kindly to Protestants Nancy Mitford gushes over Louis XIV the Sun King though 1000s of Versailles chamber pots had to be emptied but let s move along ca va I like author Horne when he allows that life at Versailles was leaden unless ou had a taste for cards hunting and gossip In sum my feelings are mixed And rather blurry Let me recommend anew The French by Sanche de Gramont who offers a perceptive look at everything French from bureaucracy and pettiness to grandeur fashion politics and philosophy and of course food and sex This is the book Payback you want He points out that the US English kid is told to be good By contrast the French child is always told sois raisonnable be reasonable This is called Thinking French Ca va She is a woman I mean she is femaleAnd she is not just any female She is of colossal fameA mythical female she isAndet she is well alive and exists todayBecause she has presence than The No 1 Car Spotter and the Car Thieves No1 Car Spotter you or I have I am talking about resplendent ParisFor if this woman is outstandingly beautiful and alluring at times she as also been violent and bloodthirsty and this mix of personas has made her eminently enigmatic and mysteriousAlistair Horne in this book traces the history of Paris through what he sees as her Seven Ages As he traces her history we see that her life has evolved around a few celebrated men Or may be it was that these men needed her when pursuing their ambitions and she knew how to position herself as these reuirements changed through history Her Seven Ages succeeded as followsLutetia aoung wench from Roman times was elevated by Philippe Auguste to the status of a gentle maiden in a chivalrous and First Age Henri IV stepped in to herald the Second Age and she was the one for whom and in genuine faith and extraordinary credulity he switched religions For him this Lady was worth a Mass She sadly felt neglected in the Third Age when Louis XIV moved all splendor music and light to that upstart demoiselle of Versailles But it was Napoleon who as the hero of the Fourth Age tamed her when she became a revolutionary and instead raised her to her rightful throne of Empress of all cities In a characteristic ambitious tone he had vouched that he would make her the most beautiful city in the world And even though Horne titles the Fifth Age after the common La Commune who took over and played its jarring tune in her elegant arena it is still the age of a self appointed hero Louis Napoleon Nor is the Sixth Age one that can be honorably remembered under one single man This was a period framed and marked by horrid wars can be honorably remembered under one single man This was a period framed and marked by horrid wars which her enemies dared to invade her three times spanning and puncturing the Belle poue and then adding on a second Thirty Year war Her politicians had failed her Horne has identified this age with the invitation to the frivolous upstart from earlier times to come back to stage this time in strict austerity and sign the Treaty of Versailles that would supposedly expel Hell but which didn t But this long period of no heroes was a period of artists who honored her as their muse In her final and current Seventh Age we see again a hero De Gaulle who once he admitted that he could not be Emperor and put a veil over her past as Empress gave her for a fifth and still successful round the dignified and modern mantle of Lady of the R publiueBut if these five men dominated these Seven Ages we should not think that these were the only men in her life There were others many others There were those who gave her things beautiful things For example Louis IX gave her the dainty Sainte Chapelle Francois I gave her an elegant Renaissance palace to replace the rough Louvre bastion and invited the inventive Leonardo to visit and pay her homage She was given many bridges as she grew from the little island and expanded to the two sides of her river And these were all the gift of cavaliers for even the Pont Marie was not related to the virgin but designed by the architect Christophe Marie She certainly offered a fruitful ground for the creations of ingenious architects national and S splendidly to life With a keen eye for the telling anecdote and pivotal moment he portrays an array of vivid incidents to show us how Paris endures through each age is altered but always emerges brilliant and beautiful than ever The Seven Ages of Paris is a great historian’s tribute to a city he loves and has spent a lifetime learning to know. ,Cliche Like Paris Is