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Publisher's Summary

They never knew how he did it. Few composers write more than one or two symphonies in their lifetimes. Beethoven spent a year on his shorter symphonies but more than six years on his 9th Symphony. The prodigy Mozart finished his last three symphonies (39, 40, and 41) in the span of a few weeks. His 25th Symphony took only two days. 

None of these speed records match those of baroque composer Georg Philipp Telemann. Friends with both Johann Sebastian Bach and George Frideric Handel, he was the most prolific composer in history and considered to be a leading German composer at a time when giants roamed the earth. During his duties as court musician for Count Erdmann II of Promnitz in Poland, he composed at least 200 overtures in a two-year period. Over his lifetime Telemann's oeuvre consists of more than 3,000 pieces, although “only” 800 survive to this day. 

Telemann was not the only person whose productivity defied all reason. Greek scientist Archimedes discovered mathematical phenomena that weren't confirmed for 17 centuries. He also single-handedly defended Syracuse from the Romans by building massive catapults, a huge iron claw that could pick ships up out of the ocean, and even a solar-powered death ray. 

Ibn Sina was a medieval mathematician who wrote hundreds of treatises, including a medical compendium used in European universities for the next 400 years. Philipp II of Spain ruled a global empire from his throne in Madrid in the 1500s. Isaac Newton invented classical physics and was one of the inventors of calculus. Benjamin Franklin wrote, published, politicked, invented, experimented, and humored, sometimes all at the same time. Theodore Roosevelt won the presidency twice, was the first American to earn a belt in judo, hunted, wrote numerous books, and read four hours a day even during the busiest moments of his political life. 

This book will explore the lives of the 17 most productive people in history.

©2015 Scott Rank (P)2018 Scott Rank

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teaching effectiveness

I liked the way the teach what is lo productivity , how it is by showing with examples of well known people in history.

it is a learning about history too, people, what they did and their impact... and the last chapter is a very good end to conclude the book.

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lots of great information

I learned a lot from this book I was very glad to listen to it it open my eyes to a lot of possibilities about the way I spend my day and my week and a great information about planning out my projects and my schedules and I'm glad to listen to

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  • Martin
  • 03-22-18

A Mixed Bag

Wonderful stories of historical figures. But does very little to tie together in a narrative/message

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  • Josh
  • 06-04-18

Great intro

A great intro into a collection of fascinating characters from history. Some interesting reading to follow this book I'm sure.