100 LETTERS THAT CHANGED THE WORLD

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The selected letters demonstrate the power of the written word to inspire, astonish, and entertain and range from ink-inscribed tablets vividly describing life in ancient Rome to remarkable last wills and testaments, passionate outpourings of love and despair, and diplomatic notes with deadly consequences.

Included are entries that span history: Leonardo da Vinci's résumé with barely a mention of his artistic talents; Henry VIII's love letters to Anne Boleyn; Beatrix Potter's correspondence with a friend's son that inspired Peter Rabbit; the scrawled note that brought about Oscar Wilde's downfall; SOS telegrams from the Titanic; the telegram informing the president about the bombing of Pearl Harbor; Martin Luther King, Jr.'s open letter from a Birmingham jail; Nelson Mandela's letters from prison; as well as notable suicide notes or famous last words by cultural luminaries such as Virginia Woolf, Baudelaire, and Kurt Cobain.

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