Archivi categoria: BOOKS

TI AMO COME SE AVESSI QUINDICI ANNI[1] | focus su “Gli ultimi libertini” di Benedetta Craveri

Vorrei avere quell’ésprit galante e fine, quella sottigliezza concisa e veloce del motto di spirito del Visconte Louis-Alexandre de Ségur per tessere le lodi di quel lavoro straordinario che è “Gli ultimi Libertini” di Benedetta Craveri (Adelphi editore), ma mi rintano in un comune ed umile Formidable chapeau, Madame!  per caldeggiare la lettura di questo saggio che si legge come un romanzo, scritto con una tale felicità compositiva e lessicale da essere un vero incantamento.


Sette anni di lavoro, sette anni di ricerche, sette libertini, sette figure maschili iconiche a far da chiasmo ai precedenti saggi (sempre pubblicati da Adelphi) su altrettante e vieppiù figure femminili per tracciare i confini di quell’Antico Regime già scandagliato, narrato e reso fruibile dalla Professoressa Craveri con i precedenti saggi come “Madame du Deffand e il suo mondo”,  “La civiltà della conversazione” nonché dalla stupenda galleria di ritratti del beau monde che si susseguono in “Amanti e Regine”.

 Di Craveri ho letto tutte le grandi pubblicazioni, ma quest’ultima primeggia raffinata sulle altre, non solo per la meraviglia lessicale, ma soprattutto per l’eleganza -leggera come una crinolina di seta- della composizione.

Il saggio, che si compone come una grande galerie nella quale sfilano i ritratti del Duca di Lauzun, del Visconte Joseph-Alexandre de Ségur, del conte di Narbonne, del cavaliere di Boufflers, del conte Louis-Philippe de Ségur e del conte di Vaudreuil, affresca altresí quel mondo della corte e della nobiltà di Francia che poteva ben considerarsi “una grande famiglia”, nella quale vicende e destini si annodavano intricatissimi grazie alla fitta rete di parentele e di lettere che l’autrice ha ricostruito con paziente studio (e che un regesto monumentale ci offre).

A spazzar via quelle vite e quei destini fu il 1789, anno capitale e capitolo seminale alla quale l’autrice affida il riassunto di tutte quelle vite avventurose tratteggiate con garbo e delizia che si muovevano con onore, audacia, scaltrezza, cinismo e spregiudicatezza nella grande scacchiera della corte e delle residenze nobiliari.


A presto,



Intervista della Prof.ssa Craveri su Huffington Post e su Repubblica


[1] Lettera di Madame de Sabran al Cavaliere di Boufflers, 7 novembre 1787, p. 183.

THE REAL ALPHABET OF ME | a funny guide of your blogger

When I’m following a blog I’m always curious about the person who is behind that.  So, if  it might have happened to you of being curious about me..well… I ‘ve decided to start this guide to let you know who I am…by a funny alphabet guide (without any precise order, anyway…so be’s going  a random alphabetical guide) to satisfy your curiosity and my analysis!!!


A as ART  (see also Dutch and Flemish art history, Flemish primitives, Contemporary jewellery – forthcoming)

One cannot live without Art: whether in case of fine arts or music, movies ballet dance  literature poetry…     Really poor the one who thinks that we could and should live without them: such a boring life!

Art and artists always provided good questions for the entire world and always detected  very early the wind of change. Arts shock, overwhelm and never explain themselves: it is a mixture of collisions, shouts and silences. We are the key to understand them, admire them and, very often, be consumed.

And, as my wise friend R. once said to me, “When you’re feeling blue, sad…whenever the entire world seems not to understand you…remember that you have art. Whoever you are, if Art is in your life, it SAVES YOU” (or it damns you…)

It’s true.

B as BACH (see also Ancient and Classical Music- forthcoming)

I was twelve when classical music broke into my life: first it was with Milos Forman’s “Amadeus” and then my parents let my curiosity fly away….and I met him: Johann Sebastian Bach. The Father of us all.

As an avid listener, I had really no idea with which kind of composition I had to start listening to him so I followed my nose and the very first oeuvre I’ve ever listened of Bach was the Branderburg Concerts conducted by Yehudi Menhuin, still in my heart.

Then came Glenn Gould, his recordings, the Variations (I have almost twenty different editions of Goldberg Variations not only the two recorded by Gould)  and all the piano works that I never  get tired to listen to. And then all the cantatas, partitas,  concertos…and so on…

As it happens in literature and with books, music provides a composition for your temper, your troubles, your feelings and your mood: it is a continuous research and discover: it leads you both to ancient music and to contemporary sonorities and composers and will always be part of your life.

One thing more about Bach (and classical music): forget the fact it relaxes you! Classical music and, especially the one of Bach, always confronts you with the inner an unveiled part of you. Try with The Musical Offer and The Well-Tempered Clavier and let me know.


Really…shall I have to explain what books mean to me? Naaaaaaaaaaaaaaa…

L as LIPSTICK  (beware before reading!  It might be addictive !!!)

I do not remember where I read this news or when I’ve listened to it, but the fact is that during time of economic crisis, make-up sales reach their maximum: à la tête de la course, of course, lipsticks and nail lacquers.

No wonder about that because the overquoted Coco Chanel, once again, said the truth: “If you’re sad, add more lipstick and attack!”: nothing could be more true about me…and the lipstick.

I might tell you that my affair with lipstick always has to do with:

  • the name. Seriously speaking: could anyone resist to a “Tumultuous Pink”? Have you ever thought about what there is behind the name of a shade? It’s a promise of seduction and, furthermore, of beauty: a name has to be carefully chosen. Think to those mesmerizing names of Chanel Rouge Allure such as “La Palpitante”, “La Fougeuse” or Dior “Rose Crinoline” (to me this is an hymn to Versailles): it’s the beginning of a love story!!!
  • the shade: you know that there’s more than one red, or pink or orange…
  • The brand: choose the best and avoid dupes: high quality is always a reward (my favourites are Nars, Chanel and Tom Ford.)
  • pigmentation, duration, finish: a good quality lipstick encloses all these qualities and it will fit you at its best.

By the way, I do love collecting lipsticks and wear all of them (not all at the same time..). As for perfumes, my lipstick has to do with identity and it changes with my mood: it speaks about me and reveals how I feel.

30 lipsticks Illustration by KRISTINA HULTKRANTZ aka EMMAKISSTINA via Etsy

30 lipsticks

Therefore a good lipstick changes your face, enhances your traits, makes you feel better… and really BEAUTIFUL!

Now I know that you are in a mood for a flirty, mischievous red lipstick  so, go ahead, listen to the wise suggestions of the great Lisa Eldridge and buy the perfect ruby lipstick for you: it suits to every woman….and it is a trustworthy friend for all seasons.    And remember: retouch your lipstick when you’re all alone: a wonderful lipstick deserves closeness, confidence and intimacy, even Ovid said it once.

A presto,