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The Emperor's Marble Pavement-bookcover

By: S. W. Douglas

The Emperor's Marble Pavement

Pages: 230 Ratings:
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The Emperor’s Marble Pavement, the second of four novels about the fall of Constantinople, finds Niccolo Gritti and Demetrius Alexandrou plunged in the turmoil of a city on war’s brink, their friendship complicated by the presence of Theodora, Demetrius’ pious sister and the prostitute Cinnamon. Now in the Emperor’s service, Niccolo must make accommodation with an embattled Venetian merchant colony. The struggle between Constantine’s supporters and those who would appease the Ottomans climaxes in the infamous Service of Union in Hagia Sophia. Then Demetrius disappears, a victim of his peace-party enemies. Niccolo goes in pursuit and the friends are reunited in the Turkish court, under the cynical eye of Mehmet II. Here, courtesy of Nestor-Iskander, a Christian fanatic in the Sultan’s service, they witness the Ottoman siege train’s ominous preparations before fleeing back to Constantinople. In The Emperor’s Marble Pavement, the cross-currents of personal and historical destiny take on new turbulence.

The author was born in 1952. He read English at Exeter College, Oxford and went on to write his doctoral thesis there on the poetry of James Merrill. He has previously published four collections of poetry and two novels. He is married with a son and daughter.

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