Cover: A Marvelous Solitude: The Art of Reading in Early Modern Europe, from Harvard University PressCover: A Marvelous Solitude in HARDCOVER

A Marvelous Solitude

The Art of Reading in Early Modern Europe

Product Details


$39.95 • £34.95 • €36.95

ISBN 9780674660236

Publication Date: 12/05/2023


Add to Cart

Media Requests:

Related Subjects

A Marvelous Solitude is a marvelous book: erudite, accessible, elegant. Bolzoni focuses on the intricate web of myths and metaphors that early modern thinkers spun around the activity of reading, yet there is much here that still whispers to our experience as readers today.—Virginia Cox, author of The Prodigious Muse

This stimulating book offers a vivid survey of illustrious readers from Petrarch to Proust, woven in a dazzling verbal and visual tapestry that will delight the mind and eye of contemporaries still dwelling in the Gutenberg Galaxy.—David Marsh, author of Giannozzo Manetti: The Life of a Florentine Humanist

Lina Bolzoni’s magisterial book is about reading, but it’s also about writers presenting themselves as readers who converse with the past, other texts, and other worlds through books—and then write their way out of these ‘theaters of reading.’ How many readers emerged as writers from the crucible of these reflections? How many more will by reading this book?—Alexander Nagel, author of The Controversy of Renaissance Art

Lina Bolzoni’s love affair with books is palpable in these pages dedicated to a remarkable cohort of writers and readers from Petrarch to Proust. Books in early modernity took on lives of their own, as readers saw in them opportunities for dialogue with the absent and the dead—and were often inspired to add to the conversation themselves. Bolzoni demonstrates that the marvelous—if occasionally risky—thing about the solitude of reading is that it’s never solitary, but full of friends.—Jane Tylus, author of Reclaiming Catherine of Siena

Recent News

Black lives matter. Black voices matter. A statement from HUP »

From Our Blog

Jacket: Iron and Blood: A Military History of the German-Speaking Peoples since 1500, by Peter Wilson, from Harvard University Press

A Lesson in German Military History with Peter Wilson

In his landmark book Iron and Blood: A Military History of the German-Speaking Peoples since 1500, acclaimed historian Peter H. Wilson offers a masterful reappraisal of German militarism and warfighting over the last five centuries, leading to the rise of Prussia and the world wars. Below, Wilson answers our questions about this complex history,