The story of King Edward VIII, the Duke of Windsor, who abdicated the English throne in 1936 to marry Wallis Simpson, the women I love, an American who was twice divorced, is perhaps the most romantic saga of the twentieth century. While the dramatic events involving this famous couple may be familiar, this fascinating book provides a fresh look at their lives through the extraordinary collection of private photographs recently discovered in the Windsor residence in Paris, many of which have never been published before. In 1986 Mohammed Al Fayed, who revitalized two venerable institutions, Harrods in London and the Ritz Hotel in Paris, purchased the Paris mansion that had been the last home of the Duke and Duchess; he also acquired the contents of the house. As the residence was being restored, a few photographs emerged from drawers and chests, together with old scrapbooks, newspaper clippings, and other mementos of the couple's life together. But it was not until 1988 that the mahogany lid covering the bathtub in the Duke's bathroom was lifted to reveal the most exciting find - an additional hoard of some ten thousand photographs. The staff had hidden the pictures in the bathtub to keep them safe from acquisitive visitors during the Duchess's long illness, when many private papers were disappearing from the house. The photographs range from family snapshots to formal portraits by such well-known photographers as Cecil Beaton and Karsh of Ottawa. This remarkable cache of photographs, scrapbooks, and other objects from the house reveal the Windsors' very different backgrounds - the Duke as a royal prince, brought up to be heir to a worldwide empire, the Duchess growing up in anunremarkable family in Baltimore. The photographs show them as young adults, portray their romance, and reveal their thirty-five years of married life in exile following the Abdication.
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When the Duchess of Windsor died in 1986, the lease of her Paris villa, near the Bois de Boulogne, and its contents had to be disposed of. Along came Mohamed Al Fayed, the Egyptian-born owner of Harrods, "the international businessman and philanthropist" who had already bought and refurbished the Paris Ritz. This sumptuous selection of photographs from the collections of the ex-king and his duchess, flanked by others of the restored house actually owned by the city of Paris, is a dual biography of the expatriate pair with the harsh edges softened, and a public relations exercise for Mohamed Al Fayed. Voyeurs of English royalty will be transfixed, as many of the photos are unfamiliar and often brilliantly reproduced, although in no sense historically significant. The text, by the author of lives of Cecil Beaton and Greta Garbo, retells the familiar tale of the aging playboy king who relinquished his crown for the ambitious, twice-divorced American. Their prewar fling with the Nazis and their lengthy life in exile are handled with loyal tact. Following the social seasons and migrations with Wallis and Edward, punctuated by their brief meetings with such postwar figures as President Nixon and Generalissimo Franco's son-in-law, proves dull viewing, especially when accompanied by lifeless prose. The net effect, emphasized by the 400 illustrations, is one of expensive but uninspired lives.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Royalty lovers never tire of accounts of the fabled duke and duchess of Windsor--he the British king who, in 1936, abdicated the throne to marry her, an American divorcee. And now comes this splendidly engrossing book. In 1986, the duchess of Windsor died, 14 years after the duke; their Paris mansion and all its contents were purchased by a wealthy Egyptian businessman, who restored the property to the shine it had when its famous occupants were in their prime. In the restoration process, a lidded bathtub was opened to reveal a cache of 10,000 personal photographs; a selection is now published in this oversize volume. Additionally, other photos found in the house, as well as newspaper clippings kept in scrapbooks, are reproduced across these arresting pages. Vickers' discerning textual accompaniment follows the lives of the duke and duchess from their very disparate upbringings through their controversial marriage. For all popular European history collections. Brad Hooper
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Description du livre Abbeville Press, 1996. Hardcover. État : New. book. N° de réf. du libraire M0789202263
Description du livre Abbeville Press, 1996. Hardcover. État : New. Never used!. N° de réf. du libraire P110789202263
Description du livre Abbeville Press, 1996. Hardcover. État : New. N° de réf. du libraire DADAX0789202263
Description du livre État : Brand New. New. N° de réf. du libraire A17854