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Talleyrand: Betrayer and Saviour of France

By Robin Harris

Born in 1754, Prince Talleyrand was brilliant, witty and always dangerous.

He survived the French Revolution, helped make and break Napoleon, and went on to re-shape Europe with his subtle diplomacy. In extreme old age, at the end of a turbulent career, he became an outstanding ambassador in London, the toast of British society.

This insightful biography does ample justice to Talleyrand’s character and achievements. Despite his corruption and cynicism, the Prince emerges as one of that rare breed – an intellectual who was also a world-class statesman.

Robin Harris was born in Falmouth, Cornwall. He studied at Oxford University, won the Gibbs Prize, and obtained a DPhil in modern history. In the 1980s he served in various political and governmental capacities, including as a member of Margaret Thatcher’s Number Ten Policy Unit, and in later years turned to free-lance journalism and to writing works of history and biography.

Among his books are Valois Guyenne: A Study of Politics, Government and Society in Late Medieval France (1994), Dubrovnik – A History (2003), The Conservatives – A History (2011), Not for Turning – The Life of Margaret Thatcher (2013), Stepinac – His Life and Times (2016). He now lives in Zagreb and is currently writing a history of modern Croatia.

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