Éminence: Cardinal Richelieu and the Rise of France

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9780802778529: Éminence: Cardinal Richelieu and the Rise of France
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Chief Minister to King Louis XIII, Cardinal Richelieu was the architect of a new France in the seventeenth century and the force behind the nation's rise as a European power. One of the first statesmen to clearly understand the necessity of a balance of powers, he has captured the imagination of generations, both through the story of his life and through Alexandre Dumas's portrayal of him as a ruthless political mastermind in the classic The Three Musketeers.

Jean-Vincent Blanchard's rich and insightful new biography brings Richelieu fully to life in all his complexity. His careful understanding of politics as spectacle speaks to contemporary readers; much of what he accomplished was promoted strategically through his great passion for theater and literature. ƒminence offers a rich portrait of a fascinating man and his era, and gives us a keener understanding of the dark art of politics.

"Blanchard's captivating biography vividly captures the rise to power of a seminal figure who was instrumental in creating France as we know it."-Publishers Weekly (starred review)

"Lovers of intrigue and derring-do will enjoy Jean-Vincent Blanchard's Eminence ... [His] lively style will appeal to general readers, while history buffs will appreciate his careful footnotes and plethora of primary sources."-The Baltimore Sun

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About the Author:

Jean-Vincent Blanchard is an associate professor of French literature and politics at Swarthmore College in Pennsylvania. He has published on a broad range of subjects in politics, history, religion, philosophy, and the arts. This is his first book published in English.

Review:

"Blanchard's captivating biography vividly captures the rise to power of a seminal figure who was instrumental in creating France as we know it."--"Publishers Weekly" (starred review)

"Blanchard gives Cardinal Richelieu a tremendous depth of character through the re-creation of key, decisive moments over the course of his courtly career."--"Kirkus Reviews

""Cardinal Richelieu receives a more nuanced portrayal from Blanchard.... [he] excels in digging deep beneath the surface to reveal the extraordinary man who spawned the legend."--Margaret Flanagan, "Booklist

"

"Blanchard paints a riveting picture of the scope of Richelieu's career.... While the life of the notorious cardinal is hardly untouched material for writers, Blanchard's biography is one of few recent treatments of the subject in English and should be well received by scholars and general readers with a serious interest in French military or political history."--Tessa L.H. Minchew, "Library Journal " "A richly rewarding study of both an early student of absolute state power, and how his influence built the foundation for France's domination of seventeenth-century Europe."--BarnesandNobleReview.com

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