In 1521, Suleiman the Magnificent, Muslim ruler of the Ottoman Empire at the height of its power, dispatched an invasion fleet to the Christian island of Rhodes. This would prove to be the opening shot in an epic struggle between rival empires and faiths for control of the Mediterranean and the center of the world.

In Empires of the Sea, acclaimed historian Roger Crowley has written his most mesmerizing work to date–a thrilling account of this brutal decades-long battle between Christendom and Islam for the soul of Europe, a fast-paced tale of spiraling intensity that ranges from Istanbul to the Gates of Gibraltar and features a cast of extraordinary characters: Barbarossa, “The King of Evil,” the pirate who terrified Europe; the risk-taking Emperor Charles V; the Knights of St. John, the last crusading order after the passing of the Templars; the messianic Pope Pius V; and the brilliant Christian admiral Don Juan of Austria.

This struggle’s brutal climax came between 1565 and 1571, seven years that witnessed a fight to the finish decided in a series of bloody set pieces: the epic siege of Malta, in which a tiny band of Christian defenders defied the might of the Ottoman army; the savage battle for Cyprus; and the apocalyptic last-ditch defense of southern Europe at Lepanto–one of the single most shocking days in world history. At the close of this cataclysmic naval encounter, the carnage was so great that the victors could barely sail away “because of the countless corpses floating in the sea.” Lepanto fixed the frontiers of the Mediterranean world that we know today.

Roger Crowley conjures up a wild cast of pirates, crusaders, and religious warriors struggling for supremacy and survival in a tale of slavery and galley warfare, desperate bravery and utter brutality, technology and Inca gold. Empires of the Sea is page-turning narrative history at its best–a story of extraordinary color and incident, rich in detail, full of surprises, and backed by a wealth of eyewitness accounts. It provides a crucial context for our own clash of civilizations.
“The rise and fall of Venice’s empire is an irresistible story and [Roger] Crowley, with his rousing descriptive gifts and scholarly attention to detail, is its perfect chronicler.”—The Financial Times
 
The New York Times bestselling author of Empires of the Sea charts Venice’s astounding five-hundred-year voyage to the pinnacle of power in an epic story that stands unrivaled for drama, intrigue, and sheer opulent majesty. City of Fortune traces the full arc of the Venetian imperial saga, from the ill-fated Fourth Crusade, which culminates in the sacking of Constantinople in 1204, to the Ottoman-Venetian War of 1499–1503, which sees the Ottoman Turks supplant the Venetians as the preeminent naval power in the Mediterranean. In between are three centuries of Venetian maritime dominance, during which a tiny city of “lagoon dwellers” grow into the richest place on earth. Drawing on firsthand accounts of pitched sea battles, skillful negotiations, and diplomatic maneuvers, Crowley paints a vivid picture of this avaricious, enterprising people and the bountiful lands that came under their dominion. From the opening of the spice routes to the clash between Christianity and Islam, Venice played a leading role in the defining conflicts of its time—the reverberations of which are still being felt today.
 
“[Crowley] writes with a racy briskness that lifts sea battles and sieges off the page.”—The New York Times
 
“Crowley chronicles the peak of Venice’s past glory with Wordsworthian sympathy, supplemented by impressive learning and infectious enthusiasm.”—The Wall Street Journal
In Conquerors, New York Times bestselling author Roger Crowley gives us the epic story of the emergence of Portugal, a small, poor nation that enjoyed a century of maritime supremacy thanks to the daring and navigational skill of its explorers—a tactical advantage no other country could match. Portugal’s discovery of a sea route to India, campaign of imperial conquest over Muslim rulers, and domination of the spice trade would forever disrupt the Mediterranean and build the first global economy.

Crowley relies on letters and eyewitness testimony to tell the story of tiny Portugal’s rapid and breathtaking rise to power. Conquerors reveals the Império Português in all of its splendor and ferocity, bringing to life the personalities of the enterprising and fanatical house of Aviz. Figures such as King Manuel “the Fortunate,” João II “the Perfect Prince,” marauding governor Afonso de Albuquerque, and explorer Vasco da Gama juggled their private ambitions and the public aims of the empire, often suffering astonishing losses in pursuit of a global fortune. Also central to the story of Portugal’s ascent was its drive to eradicate Islamic culture and establish a Christian empire in the Indian Ocean. Portuguese explorers pushed deep into the African continent in search of the mythical Christian king Prester John, and they ruthlessly besieged Indian port cities in their attempts to monopolize trade.

The discovery of a route to India around the horn of Africa was not only a brilliant breakthrough in navigation but heralded a complete upset of the world order. For the next century, no European empire was more ambitious, no rulers more rapacious than the kings of Portugal. In the process they created the first long-range maritime empire and set in motion the forces of globalization that now shape our world. At Crowley’s hand, the complete story of the Portuguese empire and the human cost of its ambition can finally be told.

Praise for Conquerors

“Excellent . . . Crowley’s interpretations are nuanced and fair.”—The Christian Science Monitor

“In a riveting narrative, Crowley chronicles Portugal's horrifically violent trajectory from ‘impoverished, marginal’ nation to European power, vying with Spain and Venice to dominate the spice trade.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

“Brings to life the Portuguese explorers . . . perfect for anyone who likes a high seas tale.”—Publishers Weekly

“Readers of Crowley’s previous books will not be disappointed by this exciting tale of sea battles, land campaigns and shipwrecks. . . . Crowley makes a good case for reclaiming Portugal’s significance as forger of the first global empire.”—The Daily Telegraph

“Crowley has shown a rare gift for combining compelling narrative with lightly worn academic thoroughness as well as for balancing the human with the geopolitical—qualities on display here. The story he has to tell may be a thrilling one but not every historian could tell it so thrillingly.”—Michael Prodger, Financial Times

“A fast-moving and highly readable narrative . . . [Crowley’s] detailed reconstruction of events is based on a close reading of the works of the chroniclers, notably Barros and Correa, whose accounts were written in the tradition of the chronicles of chivalry.”—History Today
?2016年12月,「地中海史詩三部曲」首度在台面世

◆《紐約時報》最佳暢銷圖書

◆《經濟學人》年度最佳圖書

◆亞馬遜書店300人五顆星高度評價

◆簡體中文版在中國大陸熱銷十八萬冊

◆作者羅傑.克勞利寫給台灣讀者的序,也將收錄書中


「《海洋帝國》、《一四五三》和《財富之城》這三本書互相關聯,組成了一個鬆散的三部曲,敘述地中海及其周邊地區的歷史。讀者可以挑選其中任意一本書開始讀起。這三本書涵蓋的時間達四個世紀之久,從西元一二○○至一六○○年,這是基督教與伊斯蘭文明間激烈衝突的年代,涉及一連串的帝國,包括拜占庭帝國、鄂圖曼帝國,以及位處西班牙,信仰天主教的哈布斯堡王朝。……我希望這三本書能夠幫助台灣讀者,對仍在影響我們世界的地中海歷史與事件的魅力與重要性有一層更深的理解。」

——作者羅傑.克勞利中文版序


許多人可能不知道,地中海有著另一個美麗的名字——白海,在土耳其人的觀念裡,相較於位於現代土耳其北面,水色深沉的黑海,地中海的海水顏色較淡,加上充足的陽光照射下,波光粼粼,反射出白色的日光,故土耳其人稱之為「白海」。


一五二一至一五八○年代間,鄂圖曼帝國的蘇丹們為實現成為「兩海之王」——黑海和白海——的理想,數次派遣遠征軍征討地中海上的羅得島、馬爾他島與勒班陀海域;而在地中海的另一端,基督教世界也在教宗的感召與哈布斯堡王朝的號令下,將與「最殘忍的土耳其人」一決生死。這會是一場爭奪地中海世界霸權誰屬的宿命對決,也是決定基督教世界生死存亡的關鍵戰役。


在《海洋帝國》中,作者羅傑.克勞利繪聲繪色地描摹了基督教和伊斯蘭教世界間,長達數十年的殘酷鬥爭,戰場東起伊斯坦堡,西至直布羅陀海峽,有著數十篇關於帝王、將相、海盜、十字軍、穆斯林、教士的傳奇故事。此外,本書除描述東西方兩大帝國間軍事上的武力衝突、外交上的爾虞我詐外,也點出不同文化、不同宗教間的歧異與隔閡。而直到今天,東西文化之間的齟齬,仍尚未平息。


【新書出版預告】


《一四五三:君士坦丁堡的陷落》(預計2017年2月出版)

拜占庭的千年都城君士坦丁堡,一直是西方世界的中心和基督教世界抵禦伊斯蘭世界的堡壘。但在一四五三年,鄂圖曼帝國蘇丹穆罕默德二世集結了伊斯蘭世界的所有力量,力圖攻克這座城市。在一連數週的砲火之後,君士坦丁堡轟然陷落,此一事件改變了現代世界,也標誌著拜占庭的滅亡和中世紀的終結。


《財富之城:威尼斯共和國的海洋霸權》(預計2017年3月出版)

距今數百年前,威尼斯從一個彈丸之地崛起為海上貿易強國、東西方世界貿易的中繼站。從亞得里亞海到亞歷山大港、從克里特島到君士坦丁堡,幾乎無處不見威尼斯商人的蹤跡。在本書中我們將看到威尼斯如何崛起,如何成為稱霸地中海的商業帝國,如何憑藉著狡猾的外交手段、靈活的政治操作、強悍的海軍艦隊,在基督教與伊斯蘭勢力間來回擺盪,左右逢源。



出版社 馬可孛羅 (城邦)

As remarkable as Columbus and the conquistador expeditions but far more wide-ranging, the dynamic burst of Portuguese voyaging at the start of the sixteenth century is one of the tipping points of world history : the moment that the world went global. Within a short time span a tiny country, whose population did not exceed a million, created a maritime empire that stretched from Brazil to Nagasaki. Conquerors tells the almost forgotten story of how Portugal's navigators cracked the code of the Atlantic winds, launched the expedition of Vasco da Gama to India and beat the Spanish to the spice kingdoms of the East - then set about creating the first long-range maritime empire. In an astonishing blitz of thirty years, a handful of visionary empire builders, with few resources but breathtaking ambition, attempted to seize the Indian Ocean, destroy Islam and take control of world trade. This is history at its most vivid - a epic tale of navigation, trade and technology, money and religious zealotry, political diplomacy and espionage, sea battles and shipwrecks, endurance, courage and terrifying brutality. Drawing on extensive first-hand accounts, it brings to life the exploits of an extraordinary band of conquerors - men such as Afonso de Albuquerque, the first European since Alexander the Great to found an Asian empire - who set in motion the forces of globalisation. Portugal was the imperial pathfinder, the template for a wave of successors. Its empire connected the world and created a framework for profound interactions. It left a huge and long-lasting influence on the culture, food, flora, art, history and languages of the globe. It marked the start of 500 years of domination by the West which is only reversing now. Roger Crowley read English at Cambridge University and taught English in Istanbul, where he developed a strong interest in the history of Turkey. He is the author of CITY OF FORTUNE: How Venice Ruled the Seas and EMPIRES OF THE SEA: The Siege of Malta, the Battle of Lepanto, and the Contest for the Center of the World.
Empires of the Sea tells the story of the fifty-year world war between Islam and Christianity for the Mediterranean: one of the fiercest and most influential contests in European history. It traces events from the appearance on the world stage of Suleiman the Magnificent-the legendary ruler of the Ottoman Empire-through "the years of devastation" when it seemed possible that Islam might master the whole sea to the final brief flourishing of a united Christendom in 1571. The core of the story is the six years of bitter and bloody conflict between 1565 and 1571 that witnessed a fight to the finish. It was a tipping point in world civilization, a fast-paced struggle of spiraling intensity that led from the siege of Malta and the battle for Cyprus to the pope's last-gasp attempt to rekindle the spirit of the Crusades and the apocalypse at Lepanto. It features a rich cast of characters: Suleiman the Magnificent, greatest of Ottoman sultans; Hayrettin Barbarossa, the pirate who terrified Europe; the Knights of St. John, last survivors of the medieval crusading spirit; the aged visionary Pope Pius V; and the meteoric, brilliant Christian general, Don John of Austria. It is also a narrative about places: the shores of the Bosphorus, the palaces and shipyards of the Venetian lagoon, the barren rocks of Malta, the islands of Greece, the slave markets of Algiers-and the character of the sea itself with its complex pattern of winds and weather, which provided the conditions and the field of battle. It involves all the peoples who border the Great Sea: Italians, Turks, Greeks, Spaniards, the French and the people of North Africa. This story is one of extraordinary color and incident, rich in detail, full of surprises, and backed by a wealth of eyewitness accounts. Its denouement, the battle of Lepanto, is a single action of quite shocking impact-considered at the time in Christian Europe to be "a day to end all days." It is also a narrative about technology and money. Lepanto was the Mediterranean's Trafalgar, one of the great battles of world history, and a turning point in naval warfare. It was the last and greatest moment in the age of the galleys before sailing ships with broadside guns swept all before them, and it was paid for, on the Christian side, with Inca gold. The battle for the Mediterranean was instrumental in fixing the boundaries of Christendom and Islam and redirecting the course of empire. After Lepanto, the great powers turned away exhausted from the bitter and fruitless struggle for mastery of the Mediterranean. Henceforth, the contest for empire would be global: its new theaters would be the Atlantic and the Indian Oceans, the spice islands and the Americas.
The rise and fall of the Venetian empire stands unrivaled for drama, intrigue, and sheer opulent majesty. In City of Fortune, Roger Crowley, acclaimed historian and New York Times bestselling author of Empires of the Sea, applies his narrative skill to chronicling the astounding five-hundred-year voyage of Venice to the pinnacle of power. Tracing the full arc of the Venetian imperial saga for the first time, City of Fortune is framed around two of the great collisions of world history: the ill-fated Fourth Crusade, which culminated in the sacking of Constantinople and the carve-up of the Byzantine Empire in 1204, and the Ottoman-Venetian War of 1499-1503, which saw the Ottoman Turks supplant the Venetians as the preeminent naval power in the Mediterranean. In between were three centuries of Venetian maritime dominance-years of plunder and plague, conquest and piracy-during which a tiny city of "lagoon dwellers" grew into the richest place on earth. Drawing on firsthand accounts of pitched sea battles, skillful negotiations, and diplomatic maneuvers, Crowley paints a vivid picture of this avaricious, enterprising people and the bountiful lands that came under their dominion. Defiant of emperors, indifferent to popes, the Venetians saw themselves as reluctant freebooters, compelled to take to the open seas "because we cannot live otherwise and know not how except by trade." From the opening of the spice routes to the clash between Christianity and Islam, Venice played a leading role in the defining conflicts of its time-the reverberations of which are still being felt today. Only an author with Roger Crowley's deep knowledge of post-Crusade history could put these iconic events into their proper context. Epic in scope, magisterial in its understanding of the period, City of Fortune is narrative history at its most engrossing.
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