Cover: Peiresc’s Mediterranean World, from Harvard University PressCover: Peiresc’s Mediterranean World in PAPERBACK

Peiresc’s Mediterranean World

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Product Details


$25.50 • £20.95 • €23.00

ISBN 9780674979710

Publication Date: 10/30/2017


640 pages

33 halftones, 11 charts, 2 tables


Much of Peiresc’s originality as a thinker about past and present emerges only when the minutiae of his practices go under the scholar’s microscope. Miller is as tireless as Peiresc in his attention to them… The hero of Peiresc’s Mediterranean World was an intellectual omnivore who discovered new worlds wherever he looked… Peiresc’s Mediterranean World is written…in energetic, eloquent prose… Miller uses an experimental form of exposition to make his readers see with new eyes. He does not tell a single story, but moves to the tune of two steps forward, one step back, at times following chronological order, at times following thematic order… Miller’s greatest achievement—and it is remarkable—is to portray Peiresc as a figure in a period landscape: someone who shared skills and interests with contemporaries… Peter Miller’s reanimation of Peiresc, the master of the Mediterranean, is the best kind of case study. It not only makes us appreciate the range and richness of one man’s experience and the originality of his thought, but also suggests that he had many colleagues in his deepest and most imaginative inquiries. Most important, it gives us hope that their archives too will be opened up by scholars skillful and imaginative enough to make them speak to us.—Anthony Grafton, The New York Review of Books

Miller is a pertinacious and meticulous scholar… The book is a rewarding quarry for picturesque details.—Felipe Fernández-Armesto, Literary Review

An amazingly learned work, and strikingly imaginative. Miller provides a brilliant conspectus of the Mediterranean world of the early seventeenth century filtered through Peiresc’s eyes and his unbelievable archive.—Bernard Bailyn

Peter N. Miller’s magical book conjures a lost world back into being: a human world stretched across an ocean. This is an immensely distinguished work—one that justly seeks comparison with that of the mighty dead explorers of the same ocean, Braudel and Goitein.—Anthony Grafton

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