The Pearl: A True Tale of Forbidden Love in Catherine the Great's Russia

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9780300158588: The Pearl: A True Tale of Forbidden Love in Catherine the Great's Russia
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Filled with a remarkable cast of characters and set against the backdrop of imperial Russia, this tale of forbidden romance could be the stuff of a great historical novel. But in fact The Pearl tells a true tale, reconstructed in part from archival documents that have lain untouched for centuries. Douglas Smith presents the most complete and accurate account ever written of the illicit love between Count Nicholas Sheremetev (1751-1809), Russiaâ€TMs richest aristocrat, and Praskovia Kovalyova (1768-1803), his serf and the greatest opera diva of her time. Blessed with a beautiful voice, Praskovia began her training in Nicholasâ€TMs operatic company as a young girl. Like all the members of Nicholasâ€TMs troupe, Praskovia was one of his own serfs. But unlike the others, she utterly captured her masterâ€TMs heart. The book reconstructs Praskoviaâ€TMs stage career as “The Pearl†and the heartbreaking details of her romance with Nicholasâ€"years of torment before their secret marriage, the outrage of the...

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Review:

''The Pearl' is a bright, sparkling jewel of a book; a masterpiece that deserves as wide an audience as possible. Russia's greatest love story has never been properly told, until now.' - Amanda Foreman, author of 'Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire'. 'An engaging narrative... Scrupulous research underlies this fascinating picture of life at Russia's top social echelon.' George Loomis, Moscow Times --Amanda Foreman, George Loomis

About the Author:

Douglas Smith is a resident scholar at the University of Washington and the author of the prize-winning books 'Working the Rough Stone: Freemasonry and Society in Eighteenth-Century Russia' and 'Love and Conquest: Personal Correspondence of Catherine the Great and Prince Grigory Potemkin'.

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Book Description Yale University Press, United States, 2009. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English. Brand new Book. The unforgettable story of the serf who became one of Russia's greatest opera singers and her noble master, a man who defied all tradition to marry her Filled with a remarkable cast of characters and set against the backdrop of imperial Russia, this tale of forbidden romance could be the stuff of a great historical novel. But in fact The Pearl tells a true tale, reconstructed in part from archival documents that have lain untouched for centuries. Douglas Smith presents the most complete and accurate account ever written of the illicit love between Count Nicholas Sheremetev (1751-1809), Russia's richest aristocrat, and Praskovia Kovalyova (1768-1803), his serf and the greatest opera diva of her time.Blessed with a beautiful voice, Praskovia began her training in Nicholas's operatic company as a young girl. Like all the members of Nicholas's troupe, Praskovia was one of his own serfs. But unlike the others, she utterly captured her master's heart. The book reconstructs Praskovia's stage career as "The Pearl" and the heartbreaking details of her romance with Nicholas-years of torment before their secret marriage, the outrage of the aristocracy when news of the marriage emerged, Praskovia's death only days after delivering a son, and the unyielding despair that followed Nicholas to the end of his life. Written with grace and style, The Pearl sheds light on the world of the Russian aristocracy, music history, and Russian attitudes toward serfdom. But above all, the book tells a haunting story of love against all odds. Seller Inventory # AAH9780300158588

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Book Description Yale University Press, United States, 2009. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English. Brand new Book. The unforgettable story of the serf who became one of Russia's greatest opera singers and her noble master, a man who defied all tradition to marry her Filled with a remarkable cast of characters and set against the backdrop of imperial Russia, this tale of forbidden romance could be the stuff of a great historical novel. But in fact The Pearl tells a true tale, reconstructed in part from archival documents that have lain untouched for centuries. Douglas Smith presents the most complete and accurate account ever written of the illicit love between Count Nicholas Sheremetev (1751-1809), Russia's richest aristocrat, and Praskovia Kovalyova (1768-1803), his serf and the greatest opera diva of her time.Blessed with a beautiful voice, Praskovia began her training in Nicholas's operatic company as a young girl. Like all the members of Nicholas's troupe, Praskovia was one of his own serfs. But unlike the others, she utterly captured her master's heart. The book reconstructs Praskovia's stage career as "The Pearl" and the heartbreaking details of her romance with Nicholas-years of torment before their secret marriage, the outrage of the aristocracy when news of the marriage emerged, Praskovia's death only days after delivering a son, and the unyielding despair that followed Nicholas to the end of his life. Written with grace and style, The Pearl sheds light on the world of the Russian aristocracy, music history, and Russian attitudes toward serfdom. But above all, the book tells a haunting story of love against all odds. Seller Inventory # AAH9780300158588

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