"Trask's exemplary translation...makes the real Casanova accessible in English...as strange, as diverse, as compelling as fiction."--John Simon, 'Book Week' In volumes 7 and 8, Casanova is now close to forty. His various manipulations of the credulous rich have made him rich in turn. His travels take him to France, Germany, Switzerland, and Italy. In Rome he charms the Pope; in Naples, he nearly marries a young woman as licentious as he is himself, but she turns out to be his daughter.
Giacomo Casanova was born in Venice in 1725. His parents, both actors, wanted him to become a priest, but their hopes were dashed when, at sixteen, he was expelled from seminary for immoral misconduct. Probably best-known for his reputation as a womanizer, Casanova was in turn a secretary, a soldier in the Venetian army, a preacher, an alchemist, a gambler, a violinist, a lottery director, and a spy. He translated Homer's Iliad into Italian and collaborated with Da Ponte on the libretto for Mozart's Don Giovanni. He retired in 1785 to the castle of a friend-Count Waldstein of Bohemia-in order to write his memoirs.