City of Fortune: How Venice Ruled the Seas

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“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
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About the author

Roger Crowley was born in 1951 and spent part of his childhood in Malta. He read English at Cambridge University and taught English in Istanbul, where he developed a strong interest in the history of Turkey. He has traveled extensively throughout the Mediterranean basin over many years and has a wide-ranging knowledge of its history and culture. He lives in Gloucestershire, England. He is also the author of 1453: The Holy War for Constantinople and The Clash of Islam and the West and Empires of the Sea: The Siege of Malta, the Battle of Lepanto, and the Contest for the Center of the World.
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Reviews

4.4
12 total
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Additional Information

Publisher
Random House
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Published on
Jan 24, 2012
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Pages
464
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ISBN
9780679644262
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Features
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Language
English
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Genres
History / Europe / General
History / Europe / Italy
History / Military / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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Roger Crowley
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.
Roger Crowley
In Empires of the Sea and City of Fortune, New York Times bestselling author Roger Crowley established himself as our generation’s preeminent historian of the great European seafaring empires, and the go-to author for post-Crusade clashes of East and West. Now, in Conquerors, 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


From the Hardcover edition.
Roger Crowley
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.
羅傑.克勞利(Roger Crowley)
 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)

Roger Crowley
In Empires of the Sea and City of Fortune, New York Times bestselling author Roger Crowley established himself as our generation’s preeminent historian of the great European seafaring empires, and the go-to author for post-Crusade clashes of East and West. Now, in Conquerors, 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


From the Hardcover edition.
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