The Decline and Fall of Practically Everybody: Great Figures of History Hilariously Humbled

The Decline and Fall of Practically Everybody: Great Figures of History Hilariously Humbled


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The Decline and fall of Practically Everybody is the synthesis of Will Cuppy's wry and friendly attitude toward birds, reptiles, fish, and mammals -- especially mammals, for this book is about people. Here they are, the famous and infamous of everyday history, from Cheops to Miles Standish.

So you think you know most of what there is to know about people like Nero Cleopatra, or Lady Godiva and Lucrezia Borgia? You say Louis XIV, Peter the Great, and Catherine the Great have had everything there is to know written about them? And William the Conqueror and Queen Elizabeth and Montezuma? How wrong you are, for in these pages you will find Will Cuppy footloose in the footnotes of history, writing as only he could write about these fabulous men and women of hisotry.

Luckily we can view them through a unique pair of eyes and an indescribably wonderful turn of mind, which has transformed them into human beings, not as we knew them from the history books, but as we would have known them had we known them Cuppy-wise: foolish, fallible, and so much our very common ancestors. William Steig has provided 55 line drawings for this book -- an abundance of riches, for each one is a minor masterpiece.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781586637330
Publisher: Sterling Publishing
Publication date: 08/28/2002
Pages: 230
Product dimensions: 5.36(w) x 8.24(h) x 0.90(d)

Table of Contents

Part IIt Seems There Were Two Egyptians
Cheops, or Khufu7
Part IIAncient Greeks and Worse
Alexander the Great38
Part IIIStrange Bedfellows
Attila the Hun71
Lady Godiva86
Lucrezia Borgia96
Philip the Sap106
Part IVA Few Greats
Louis XIV113
Madame DU Barry122
Peter the Great132
Catherine the Great141
Frederick the Great149
Part VMerrie England
William the Conqueror159
Henry VIII166
George III180
Part VINow We're Getting Somewhere
Leif the Lucky189
Christopher Columbus194
Captain John Smith206
Miles Standish212
Part VIIThey All Had Their Fun
Some Royal Pranks219
Some Royal Stomachs222

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The Decline and Fall of Practically Everybody: Great Figures of History Hilariously Humbled 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 9 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
When I was about 10 years old (I'm 60 now) my parents had this book and I loved it. I have wondered for many years if it was still in print and highly recommend it to anyone with an interest in history and a keen sense of humor. A great spoof of the famous and infamous!
RubyTuba More than 1 year ago
Factually true, laugh-out-loud-funny characterizations of famous historical figures. Will Cuppy was a genius with a dark sense of humor, and a touch of the misanthrope. Very scholarly - he would do extensive research, taking notes on hundreds of 3x5 cards before beginning a piece - yet the flow of his writing seems almost off-the-cuff. The more you know about history, the more you'll laugh. A great gift for a well-read friend or a professor/teacher of history!
Guest More than 1 year ago
These are funny stories about 'great' people that we never learned in school. And it's too bad. You would think some college professor, at least, might suggest this. But, oh well. Very entertaining look at how utterly human some of the biggest names in history really were.
lucybrown on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Will Cuppy trains a witty and jaundiced eye upon the great figures of the past to great merriment. Do not read this book if you are afraid of laughing out loud when reading.
Essa on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A delightful book that brought me (and my roommate, who later borrowed it) near-constant laughter while reading it. The author's wonderful wit makes history far more entertaining than it ever was in school.
kaelirenee on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Most of the time reading this, I had a hard time sifting out the jokes from the real, but a rereading of it later was helpful. While I probably wouldn't use this book as reference for a history class, it's an interesting read and full of very dry humor.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you have a eight-grade level education or above, then stay away from this book. This book is for people that do not know anything about history. The chapters are very short and the author does not contribute any new facts about the people he wrote about... and how could he if at the time of publishing he was dead (the book was published by his estate). Also, the sense of humor is a little out-dated: you can find some sexists jokes appropriate for the fifties, but not for today. Stay away from this book if you are a history enthusiast. He has so many footnotes that it is impossible to follow the reading, and even that would be OK if the footnotes were remotely interesting, but they are not. He attempts to make the reading funny, but he falls way short of his goal. Furthermore, since the book was written in the 50's, I'm sure some of the information is incorrect and outdated. Anyway, did not enjoy it and would not recommend it.