Author(s): Laurence Bergreen
In September 1298, the rival Italian republics of Genoa and Venice fought a fierce sea battle at Curzola off the rocky coast of southern Dalmatia. Against the odds the Venetians, led by Admiral Andrea Dandolo, son of the Doge, were defeated. Among the thousands of Venetians captives was one Marco Polo, gentleman, merchant of Venice, and sometime traveller to East Asia. Incarcerated in a Ligurian fastness, he told his story to a fellow-prisoner, a writer of romances named Rustichello of Pisa. The account of his travels that Marco Polo dictated to Rustichello in captivity - Il Milione - would be exceptionally widely read and would stimulate European interest in the East and its riches."Marco Polo: from Venice to Xanadu" is Laurence Bergreen's thrilling and masterly reconstruction of the life and wanderings of one the great adventurers of world history. Between 1271 and 1275 Marco Polo accompanied his father Niccolo and uncle Maffeo on a journey east from Acre into central Asia along the Silk Route, eventually reaching China and the court of the Great Khan of the Mongol Empire, Kublai Khan. Entering the service of the Khan, he travelled extensively in the Mongol Empire. First published 2007.
Marco Polo comes to life! - a classic portrait that now surely cannot be bettered - Simon Winchester, author of 'The Map That Changed the World'a dazzling portrait of a remarkable man - a task that has been long overdue - Guardian
Laurence Bergreen was born in New York City and educated at Harvard University. Now a prize-winning nonfiction writer, his books include Over the Edge of the World: Magellan's Terrifying Circumnavigation of the Globe (2004) and Voyage to Mars: NASA's Search for Life Beyond Earth, a narrative of NASA's exploration of Mars and the search for extraterrestrial life (2000).
Prologue: The CommanderBOOK ONE / EUROPA: The Merchants of Venice; The Golden Passport; The Apprentice; The Opium Eater; High Plains Drifters; The Secret History of the Mongols.BOOK TWO / ASIA: The Universal Emperor; In the Service of the Khan; The Struggle for Survival; The General and the Queen; The City of Heaven; The Divine Wind.BOOK THREE / INDIA: The Seeker; The Mongol Princess; The Prodigal Son.Epilogue: The StorytellerAcknowledgementsNotes on SourcesSelect BibliographyIndex