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By the Sword: A History of Gladiators, Musketeers, Samurai, Swashbucklers, and Olympic Championsby Richard Cohen
Synopses & Reviews
Napoleon fenced. So did Shakespeare, Karl Marx, Grace Kelly, and President Truman, who would cross swords with his daughter, Margaret, when she came home from school. Lincoln was a canny dueler. Ignatius Loyola challenged a man to a duel for denying Christ’s divinity (and won). Less successful, but no less enthusiastic, was Mussolini, who would tell his wife he was “off to get spaghetti,” their code to avoid alarming the children. By the Sword is an epic history of sword fighting–a science, an art, and, for many, a religion that began at the dawn of civilization in ancient Egypt and has been an obsession for mankind ever since. With wit and insight, Richard Cohen gives us an engrossing history of the world via the sword.
Praise for By the Sword:
“Touché! While scrupulous and informed about its subject, Richard Cohen’s book is about more than swordplay. It reads at times like an alternative social history of the West.”
“In writing By The Sword, [Cohen] has shown that he is as skilled with the pen as he is with the sword.”
–The New York Times
“Irresistible . . . extraordinary . . . vivid and hugely enjoyable.”
“A virtual encyclopedia on the subject of sword fighting.”
–San Francisco Chronicle
“Literate, learned, and, beg pardon, razor-sharp . . . a pleasure for practitioners, and a rewarding entertainment for the armchair swashbuckler.”
–Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
A vivid history of swordfighting ranges from ancient times to the present day, profiling such great swordsfighters as Ignatius Loyola, Napoleon, Shakespeare, Karl Marx, Grace Kelly, Harry Truman, George Patton, Errol Flynn, and Basil Rathbone while exploring the cultural and social implications of fencing. Reprint. 30,000 first printing.
By the Sword is an epic history of sword fighting—a science, an art, and, for many, a religion that began at the dawn of civilization in ancient Egypt and has been an obsession for mankind ever since. With wit and insight, Richard Cohen gives us an engrossing history of the world via the sword.
Table of Contents
How it all began — Enter the master — Wild kind of justice — France in the age of the musketeers — Great swordmakers — Perfect thrust — Where the sword is the soul — Points of honor — Pursuit for gentlemen — Swashbuckling — On Mount Rushmore — Spilled blood — Scars of glory — Facist sport — Woman who saluted Hitler — Champions — Exodus — Burden of gold — Honor betrayed — Demon barber.
What Our Readers Are Saying
History and Social Science » Military » General History