The Memoirs of Casanova (Illustrated Edition) by Giacomo Casanova Summary
A series of adventures wilder and more fantastic than the wildest of romances, written down with the exactitude of a business diary; a view of men and cities from Naples to Berlin, from Madrid and London to Constantinople and St. Petersburg; the 'vie intime' of the eighteenth century depicted by a man, who to-day sat with cardinals and saluted crowned heads, and tomorrow lurked in dens of profligacy and crime; a book of confessions penned without reticence and without penitence; a record of forty years of "occult" charlatanism; a collection of tales of successful imposture, of 'bonnes fortunes', of marvellous escapes, of transcendent audacity, told with the humour of Smollett and the delicate wit of Voltaire. Who is there interested in men and letters, and in the life of the past, who would not cry, "Where can such a book as this be found?" Yet the above catalogue is but a brief outline, a bare and meager summary, of the book known as "THE MEMOIRS OF CASANOVA"; a work absolutely unique in literature. He who opens these wonderful pages is as one who sits in a theatre and looks across the gloom, not on a stage-play, but on another and a vanished world. Giacomo Casanova (1725-1798) was an Italian adventurer and author from the Republic of Venice. He often signed his works Jacques Casanova de Seingalt after he began writing in French following his second exile from Venice. He has become so famous for his often complicated and elaborate affairs with women that his name is now synonymous with "womanizer". He associated with European royalty, popes and cardinals, along with luminaries such as Benjamin Franklin, Voltaire, Goethe, and Mozart.