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The Florentines


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Table of Contents

1: Dante and Florence 2: Wealth, Freedom and Talent 3: A Clear Eye Amidst Troubled Times 4: Boccaccio and Petrarch 5: War and Peace 6: The Dome 7: The Mathematical Artists 8: Those Who Paid the Bills 9: The Renaissance Spreads Its Wings 10: Medici Rising 11: A Medici Artist 12: Il Magnifico 13: Leonardo 14: Shifting Ground 15: Undercurrents 16: The Bonfire of the Vanities 17: Machiavelli 18: Michelangelo 19: Galileo 20: Epilogue

About the Author

Paul Strathern studied philosophy at Trinity College, Dublin. He is a Somerset Maugham Award-winning novelist; author of two series of books - Philosophers in 90 Minutes and The Big Idea: Scientists who Changed the World - and several works of non-fiction, including The Medici, The Artist, the Philosopher and the Warrior, Spirit of Venice, Death in Florence and The Borgias.


Strathern keeps readers engaged throughout with a sprinkling of colourful anecdotes, often taken from contemporary (or slightly later) sources... Those coming to the period for the first time will be able to sense the flavour of the social, political and cultural life that shaped a city that still attracts so many tourists. * BBC History Magazine *
Vivid biographical sketches cast famous Florentines in a more dynamic light than most modern portrayals... Buoyed by incisive details and a brisk pace, this is a welcome introduction to the city and the personalities behind the Renaissance. * Publishers Weekly *
Strathern returns to Renaissance Florence to survey the graces and disgraces of the city and its people. If Vanity Fair magazine had existed during the Renaissance, every issue might have brought tales of Florentine A-listers and their power plays, artistic triumphs, sexual exploits, and financial chicanery. Strathern aims to show how such Florentines paved the way for a global humanism focused on people's lives on Earth instead of on the medieval view that existence was only preparation for an afterlife. Strathern is an intellectually agile writer who covers four centuries briskly - and serves up occasional surprises. * Kirkus Reviews *

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