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Alessandro Manzoni was a giant of nineteenth-century European literature whose I promessi sposi ( The Betrothed , 1928) is ranked with War and Peace as marking the summit of the historical novel. Manzoni wrote "Del romanzo storico" ( "On the Historical Novel" ) during the twenty years he spent revising I promessi sposi. This first English translation of On the Historical Novel reflects the insights of a great craftsman and the misgivings of a profound thinker. It brings up to the nineteenth century the long war between ...

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