Great Bastards of History

Great Bastards of History

True and Riveting Accounts of the Most Famous Illegitimate Children Who Went on to Achieve Greatness

eBook - 2010
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Quayside Pub Group

For much of history and across most of the world, being born out of wedlock—a love child, a bastard—was a serious impediment to success. Illegitimate offspring were subject to neglect, abandonment, disinheritance, and social exclusion, and often found the usual routes to education, wealth, and status blocked. Surmounting these obstacles required tremendous fortitude and persistence.

Great Bastards of History brings together the captivating and stirring stories of fifteen remarkable and influential people who overcame the disadvantages of illegitimate birth to rise to positions of power. As well as providing insights into the personalities of many world-changing figures, it highlights the extraordinary courage, drive, and resolve that ordinary individuals can summon when faced with extreme adversity. Among its subjects are powerful political players including Alexander Hamilton, the abandoned son who became a founding father of the United States, and cultural figureheads such as Leonardo da Vinci, who, despite being denied entrance to trade guilds and universities, was proclaimed one of the greatest men of his day in courts throughout Europe. Equally affecting are some of the less well-known but no less fascinating figures, such as James Smithson, the disinherited son of an English duke, whose bequest to a country he never visited founded the largest museum in the world, the Smithsonian Institution.

Deftly blending biography and history, political intrigue, melodrama, and psychological analysis, this is a collection that will uplift, entertain, and inform, while yielding fresh perspectives on some of the most significant events from our past.



Grand Central Pub

For much of history and across most of the world, being born out of wedlock—a love child, a bastard—was a serious impediment to success. Illegitimate offspring were subject to neglect, abandonment, disinheritance, and social exclusion, and often found the usual routes to education, wealth, and status blocked. Surmounting these obstacles required tremendous fortitude and persistence.

Great Bastards of History brings together the captivating and stirring stories of fifteen remarkable and influential people who overcame the disadvantages of illegitimate birth to rise to positions of power. As well as providing insights into the personalities of many world-changing figures, it highlights the extraordinary courage, drive, and resolve that ordinary individuals can summon when faced with extreme adversity. Among its subjects are powerful political players including Alexander Hamilton, the abandoned son who became a founding father of the United States, and cultural figureheads such as Leonardo da Vinci, who, despite being denied entrance to trade guilds and universities, was proclaimed one of the greatest men of his day in courts throughout Europe. Equally affecting are some of the less well-known but no less fascinating figures, such as James Smithson, the disinherited son of an English duke, whose bequest to a country he never visited founded the largest museum in the world, the Smithsonian Institution.

Deftly blending biography and history, political intrigue, melodrama, and psychological analysis, this is a collection that will uplift, entertain, and inform, while yielding fresh perspectives on some of the most significant events from our past.



Baker & Taylor
Profiles fifteen social and political leaders who were born outside of recognized marriages, including William the Conqueror, Alexander Hamilton, Jack London, Billie Holiday, and Fidel Castro.

Book News
Fiorillo starts with an interesting notion: that there is at least sometimes a connection between illegitimate birth and great achievement. To make her case, she presents short biographies of 15 individuals, ranging from Leonardo da Vinci to Evita Peron, and Billie Holliday to Alexandre Dumas. The large font used in the book means that the individual biographies are rather short, which offers the author little space in which to convince readers of any real connection between illegitimacy and achievement. On the plus side, Fiorillo's book is beautifully and generously illustrated. Fair Winds is an imprint of Quayside Publishing. Annotation ©2010 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Publisher: Beverly, Mass. : Fair Winds Press, ©2010
ISBN: 9781616734589
1616734582
Characteristics: 1 online resource : illustrations (some color), color maps

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TheDr
Oct 11, 2012

Interesting though I wish it was more about the people rather than their illegitimacy.

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