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Creating French Culture: Treasures from the Bibliotheque Nationale de Franceby Marie Hele Tesniere
Synopses & Reviews
From the monastic cloisters in the time of Charlemagne to the book-lined studies of twentieth-century authors, this splendid book presents an overview of the literary and artistic world in France. The Bibliotheque nationale de France, today rich in collections of illuminated manuscripts, books, medals, maps, and prints, had its beginnings when Charles V established his library in the Falconry Tower of the Louvre. During the Middle Ages, culture was the handmaiden of church and government; during the absolute monarchy, it became an instrument of propaganda; in the eighteenth century, it developed an independent voice. This book explores the changing relationship between power and culture in France as seen in the history of its national library.
Book News Annotation:
An elegantly produced volume which serves as a catalogue for a major exhibition at the Library of Congress (beginning September 1995) presenting a selection of the Bibliotheque nationale de France's rare and beautiful treasures. Four American scholars write about the connection between French cultural expression and political power from medieval to modern times. Four French experts discuss some 200 of the objects in the library (most depicted here), exploring their historical significance and their connection with the Bibliotheque nationale de France. Among the objects: a ninth century liturgical manuscript, the bronze throne of Dagobert on which Napoleon sat at the founding of the order of the Legion d'Honneur; and Marguerite d'Orlean's 15th-century Book of Hours. 9x12.25"
Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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