From classical antiquity to the present day, more than three hundred unforgettable private moments in the lives of emperors, scoundrels, celebrities, courtiers, paramours, presidents, and movie stars appear in this engaging collection of personal writings and intimate thoughts from their diaries, letters, missives, and journals. Among this revelatory volume's fascinating selections are an account of Queen Elizabeth I discussing "lewd behavior" with King James of Scotland, a passionately rendered confession of love from Napoleon to Josephine, and a totally unveiled threat from a hot-headed President Truman to the music critic who failed to appreciate his daughter, Margaret's concert performance. Monica Lewinsky meanwhile laments her faltering relationship with another American president, and Elvis Presley offers his services as an FBI agent to Richard Nixon. In these often surprising pages, too, Groucho Marx considers investor relations, whereas Karl Marx ponders marital relations, and you can almost hear Cicero's sigh of relief after an edgy dinner with Julius Caesar.
Candidly, and sometimes astonishingly, with romance and tragedy, triumph and disaster, artistic endeavor and spiritual awakening, gossip and scandal, in this volume the people who made history make it again.