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The Affair of the Poisons: Murder, Infanticide and Satanism at the Court of Louis XIV Hardcover – 11 Sep 2003

5.0 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Weidenfeld & Nicolson (11 Sept. 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0297842161
  • ISBN-13: 978-0297842163
  • Product Dimensions: 17 x 3.9 x 24.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 404,209 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

The Affair of the Poisons is a beautifully researched account of this extraordinary case...With her customary intelligence and lucidity, Anne Somerset meticulously unravels this complex, fascinating affair and presents an informed opinion on what really happened. (Lucy Moore BBC HISTORY MAGAZINE (November))

Book Description

A narrative historical true crimes page-turner

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
By means of focusing on a particular series of incidents, known as the Affair of the Poisons, Anne Somerset has written one of the most penetrating studies of Louis XIV ever published. The wave of hysteria and scandal which broke over the court of Versailles in 1677 starred a Rogues' Gallery of Poisoners, Blackmailers, Devil-Worshippers, Witches, Torturers and Cruel Inquisitors which makes the events portrayed in the Witches of Salem seem like an episode from a tea-party. The most fascinating thread in this history as written by Anne Somerset is the insight which the author gives us into the character and methods of Louis XIV. She describes and lays bare the mixture of superstitious vacillation and guilt-ridden indecision with which Louis dealt with an affair which implicated those closest to him in affection and family. This not the usual bland picture of the Sun King's magnificence, unerring powers of judgement and political genius. When we consider that Somerset's portrait of the King, although admittedly in cameo form, is competing with the works of Saint Simon, Madame De Sevigne, Voltaire and more recently, Nancy Mitford - among many others - this book is a very considerable triumph of scholarship and historical writing. As a bonus, The Affair of the Poisons is full of the highly enjoyable blend of sly wit and analytical clarity with which Anne Somerset has made her reputation as a scholar and historian - and it has the hallucinatory cinematic quality of Patrick Suskind's great novel, Perfume.
The Affair Of The Poisons is the rarest of historical works: one which reads like a compulsively page-turning thriller; and yet is the product of painstaking and unique research from original sources. Truth has never been more clearly shown to be stranger than fiction, than in this powerful book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Enjoyed this book immensely - so much so I ordered another copy as a gift.
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Format: Hardcover
This book was not easy to find, so I was delighted when these people kindly found it for me and delivered it so promptly and in very good condition to me.
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Format: Hardcover
A deeply researched and lucidly argued work about major scandal at the court of Louis XIV. The only minor niggles I have with this book are Somerset's use of the word "divineresses" and using the prefix "la" before every female character - la Bosse, la Vigoruex, la Filastre, which is unnecessary and clumsy.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Α REALLY INTERESTING BOOK!
AN EXCELLENT TRANSACTION
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