Pleasure and Ambition: The Life, Loves and Wars of Augustus the Strong

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I.B.Tauris, Aug 18, 2001 - History - 304 pages
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Augustus the Strong of Saxony’s life was consumed by two addictions: the relentless pursuit of power and the uncompromising pursuit of pleasure. From his accession as Elector of Saxony in 1694 (when his brother the previous Elector died under mysterious circumstances) he pursued political power and glory by fighting the Ottoman Turks, purchasing the Polish throne (becoming a Catholic in the bargain) and warring against Sweden. His other great addiction--to pleasure--primarily in the female form--continually distracted Augustus from the single-minded pursuit of his dynastic aim. (He was reputed to have produced an illegitimate child for every day of the year.) This is the first biography in English of Augustus, and is based on primary German sources and the dispatches of English diplomats.
 

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Contents

A portrait of Augustus
3
John George
17
England and Saxony 169293
27
Stepney in Saxony
41
Stepney in Saxony 1694
51
The deaths of Billa
59
Politics and poison 1694
69
Personal affairs 1694
79
Patkul Tsar
155
Patkul Augustus and Peter
165
Charles XII strikes 170002
175
The origins of English intervention
187
The failure of mediation 1703
197
Poles apart 1704
205
Standoff
217
The shattered sanctuary 1706
227

State affairs
89
Augustus and the command
99
Preparing for Hungary
111
Commander in Hungary 169596
119
Purchasing the Polish crown 1697
131
At the court
147
Occupational hazards
241
Connaissance de ses forces The memoirs
255
Notes
263
Index
299
Copyright

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About the author (2001)

Tony Sharp was Lecturer in History at Southampton University and has written extensively on early modern European history.

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