|Author: Judith Martin
(aka Miss Manners)
This a a
manual for the hopeless Venetophile.
Love of Venice can strike anyone,
not just romantic wusses. Among
the toughies with serious cases
were Lord Byron, Richard Wagner,
Ezra Pound, and Ernest Hemingway.
- Wishing that the movie stars
in films set in Venice would move
aside so that you can get a better
view of the scenery.
- Wondering why people ask if
you had good weather when you
were there—as if rain could
dampen your love.
- Thinking that people who go
to Tuscany or Provence must be
- Believing that the "Per
San Marco" street sign with
arrows pointing in opposite directions
makes perfect sense.
- Consoling yourself when you
leave by remembering the generations
of Venetian merchants who, as
they were borne away from Venice,
vowed to be back as soon as they
had more money.
There is no cure for this affliction.
This is a guide to managing it.
| From Publishers
In a good-natured guide for die-hard
and etiquette guru Martin focuses
not on the stunning Byzantine
architecture of this Italian city
but on the unique personality
of Venetians themselves. While
this fun-to-read paean to the
sybaritic delights of la Serenissima
offers a compelling window into
the city's social history, it
should come as no surprise that
the author of Miss Manners' Guide
to Excruciatingly Correct Behavior
is most interested in schooling
her readers on how to comport
themselves in a city still long
on Old World charm and cultural
mores. Martin is quick to point
out that even the most illustrious
tourists (including former Venice
visitors Tennyson, Tchaikovsky
and Twain) need a bit of good-natured
advice on how to present themselves
("Hat etiquette is strict")
and interact with others ("Making
poetic observations ... should
be resisted at any cost").
Martin also dips an enthusiastic
toe into the rich history of Venetian
food and drink ("Veneto's
prosecco is not just cheaper than
champagne but better"), painting,
poetry and party-going, making
the book perfect for a swift,
semi-intellectual overview of
Venice that goes several steps
deeper than the average tourist
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