Details

ISBN-10: 1982111402
ISBN-13: 9781982111403
Publisher: Scribner Book Company
Publish Date: 03/10/2020
Dimensions: 8.30" L, 5.40" W, 1.20" H

The Catalogue of Shipwrecked Books: Christopher Columbus, His Son, and the Quest to Build the World’s Greatest Library

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Price: $17.00

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Overview

This impeccably researched and “adventure-packed” (The Washington Post) account of the obsessive quest by Christopher Columbus’s son to create the greatest library in the world is “the stuff of Hollywood blockbusters” (NPR) and offers a vivid picture of Europe on the verge of becoming modern. At the peak of the Age of Exploration, Hernando Colón […]

This impeccably researched and “adventure-packed” (The Washington Post) account of the obsessive quest by Christopher Columbus’s son to create the greatest library in the world is “the stuff of Hollywood blockbusters” (NPR) and offers a vivid picture of Europe on the verge of becoming modern.

At the peak of the Age of Exploration, Hernando Colón sailed with his father Christopher Columbus on his final voyage to the New World, a journey that ended in disaster, bloody mutiny, and shipwreck. After Columbus’s death in 1506, eighteen-year-old Hernando sought to continue–and surpass–his father’s campaign to explore the boundaries of the known world by building a library that would collect everything ever printed: a vast holding organized by summaries and catalogues; really, the first ever database for the exploding diversity of written matter as the printing press proliferated across Europe. Hernando traveled extensively and obsessively amassed his collection based on the groundbreaking conviction that a library of universal knowledge should include “all books, in all languages and on all subjects,” even material often dismissed: ballads, erotica, news pamphlets, almanacs, popular images, romances, fables. The loss of part of his collection to another maritime disaster in 1522, set off the final scramble to complete this sublime project, a race against time to realize a vision of near-impossible perfection.

“Magnificent…a thrill on almost every page” (The New York Times Book Review), The Catalogue of Shipwrecked Books is a window into sixteenth-century Europe’s information revolution, and a reflection of the passion and intrigues that lie beneath our own insatiable desires to bring order to the world today.

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Reviews
"A captivating adventure...For lovers of history, Wilson-Lee offers a thrill on almost every page...The Catalogue of Shipwrecked Books is an intellectual biography, but its beating heart is the tangled love of a son for his father...Magnificent." The New York Times Book Review

"Superb...an intriguing glimpse into the Renaissance mind and its rage for order, as well as a beguiling preview of the modern library and, very possibly, what lies beyond." The Wall Street Journal

"Absorbing, adventure-packed." –Washington Post

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Details

ISBN-10: 1982111402
ISBN-13: 9781982111403
Publisher: Scribner Book Company
Publish Date: 03/10/2020
Dimensions: 8.30" L, 5.40" W, 1.20" H
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