What were Montmartre and Montparnasse really like in their hey-day roughtly between 1904, when the youthful Picasso had just arrived on the Hill of Martyrs, and 1920, when Amedeo Modigliani , justly called `the prince of Bohemians', died of consumption and dissipation in Montparnasse? This book, written by an Enflishman who lived in Montnartre for thirty years and knew its famous habitue intimately , gives a vivid description. It reveals the truth behind the many legends, is packed with authentic stories about writers and painters whose name are now household words, and contains much hitherto unpublished information about the life and career of Modigliani obtained from his family and friends. Much of the text was written in Montmartre amid the scenes described, and after personal consultation with survivors of the great days when Frede presided over the Lapin Agile and Libion, patron of the Cafe de la Rotonde, was beginning to rival him in Montparnasse. It is the most complete account which has yet been written in English of the birth of Cubism and other contemporary movements in modern painting, and of the lives and loves who started them.
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