Baudolino

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Secker & Warburg, Oct 15, 2002 - Fiction - 522 pages
26 Reviews
It is April 1204, and Constantinople, the splendid capital of the Byzantine Empire, is being sacked and burned by the knights of the Fourth Crusade. Amid the carnage and confusion, one Baudolino saves a Byzantine historian and high court official from certain death at the hands of the crusading warriors, and proceeds to tell his own fantastical story. Born a simple peasant in northern Italy, Baudolino has two major gifts; a talent for learning foreign languages and a skill in telling lies. One day, when still a boy, he met a foreign commander in the woods, charming him with his quick wit and lively mind. The commander - who proves to be the Emperor Frederick Barbarossa - adopts Baudolino and sends him to the university in Paris, where he makes a number of fearless, adventurous friends.Spurred on by myths and their own reveries, this merry band sets out in search of Prester John, a legendary priest-king who was said to rule over a vast kingdom in the East - a phantasmagorical land of strange creatures with eyes on their shoulders and mouths on their stomachs, of eunuchs, unicorns, and lovely maidens.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - renbedell - LibraryThing

This is a work of historic fiction, or so I thought. The character Baudolino is the adopted son of Frederick Barbarossa. He recounts his life to Niketas Choniates. Baudolino is a work of fiction, but ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - DinadansFriend - LibraryThing

A picaresque tour across the Mediterranean and on to China. Our hero likes the Buddhists best, but he has to come home eventually. I think that Eco is better in Italian than English, and without the murder mystery, this book is a good deal less popular. Read full review

Contents

Section 1
1
Section 2
11
Section 3
27
Copyright

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About the author (2002)

First a semiotician at the University of Bologna, and a leading figure in contemporary Italian culture, Eco brought semiotics to fiction in his first novel, The Name of the Rose (1980). This unexpected international best-seller employs the techniques of a detective novel along with sophisticated postmodern narrative and verbal conundrums, to recount a series of murders in a medieval monastery. Eco's fascination with the Middle Ages began when he was a student at the University of Torino, where he wrote his doctoral thesis (1954) on St. Thomas Aquinas. The Name of the Rose (1980) won the Premio Strega and the Premio Anghiar awards in 1981, as well as numerous international awards.

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