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Love; A Curious History

Love; A Curious History

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Author: Brooke-Hitching, Edward

The arts

Published on 26 October 2023 by Simon & Schuster Ltd in the United Kingdom.

Hardback | 256 pages, Full Colour Throughout
198 x 256 x 29 | 992g

From the author of the critically acclaimed The Phantom Atlas and The Madman's Library (Sunday Times Literature Book of the Year) comes a magnificent new illustrated work. From prehistoric carvings and ancient Egyptian statues, to medieval spell books and Victorian code-writing, this unique collection gathers a wealth of curious objects and surprising stories to trace the story of love through the ages. Discover the royal marriage that crossed the boundary of death in 14th-century Portugal, the judicial duels between husbands and wives in Early Modern Europe, the love spells found in medieval manuscripts, and the romantic codes hidden in some of art's greatest masterpieces. Meet the feared ancient Greek army regiment comprised entirely of male couples; the French pirate queen avenging her murdered husband; the first woman to sail around the world; and the quack sexologist who conned 18th-century London with his musical mechanical bed. Here are ancient gods, mythical monsters, the Elizabethan portraits of smiling men on fire and the erotic paintings hidden beneath the ash of Pompeii, as well as Nigerian wedding chains, Welsh love spoons, cryptic postcards and the centuries-old cartographic tradition of mapping the heart.

A curiosity cabinet of romantic treasure, Love: A Curious History in 50 Objects draws on a wide range of sources to form a collection perfect for fans of beautiful illustrated works and curious history, while also forming the ideal romantic gift. 'A glorious cornucopia of a book, celebrating love from the hilarious to the divine - as always, Brooke-Hitching's encyclopaedic knowledge shines through.' Fern Riddell, author Sex: Lessons From History

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