The history of the world as witnessed through the most inspiring, heartfelt, and impactful letters ever written.
For the legions of readers who enjoyed 100 Diagrams that Changed the World
and A History of the World in 100 Objects
, here is a new take on understanding world history through the most important, impassioned, and world-changing letters ever penned.
The selected letters demonstrate the power of the written word to inspire, astonish, and entertain and range from ink-inscribed tablets vividly describing life in ancient Rome to remarkable last wills and testaments, passionate outpourings of love and despair, and diplomatic notes with deadly consequences.
Included are entries that span history: Leonardo da Vinci's résumé with barely a mention of his artistic talents; Henry VIII's love letters to Anne Boleyn; Beatrix Potter's correspondence with a friend's son that inspired Peter Rabbit; the scrawled note that brought about Oscar Wilde's downfall; SOS telegrams from the Titanic; the telegram informing the president about the bombing of Pearl Harbor; Martin Luther King, Jr.'s open letter from a Birmingham jail; Nelson Mandela's letters from prison; as well as notable suicide notes or famous last words by cultural luminaries such as Virginia Woolf, Baudelaire, and Kurt Cobain.