The Rothschilds

A Family Portrait
Narrated by: Richard Ferrone
Length: 11 hrs and 16 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (25 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

A National Book Award finalist from best-selling author Frederic Morton  

No family in the past two centuries has been as constantly at the center of Europe's great events, has featured such varied and spectacular personalities, has had anything close to the wealth of the Rothschilds. To this day they remain one of the most powerful and wealthy families in the world.

In Frederic Morton's classic tale, the family is brought vividly to life. Here you'll meet Mayer, longtime adviser to Germany's princes, who broke through the barriers of a Frankfurt ghetto and placed his family on the road to wealth and power; Lord Alfred, who maintained a private train, private orchestra (which he conducted), and private circus (of which he was ringmaster); Baron Philippe, whose rarefied vintages bear labels that were created by great artists, among them Picasso, Dali, and Haring; and Kathleen Nica Rothschild de Koenigswarter, the "jazz baroness", in whose arms Charlie Parker died.

The family itself has been at the center of some of the most crucial moments in history: the defeat of Napoleon at Waterloo, the development of the Suez Canal, the introduction of Jews in the House of Lords. Through it all, the Rothschild name has continued to represent the family ideal, and no author has so nimbly captured the eccentric brilliance of blood as Frederic Morton.

©1961 Frederic Morton (P)2018 Audible, Inc.

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Engaging read but dubious sentiment

The reader manages to imbue the text with the right amount of unctousness and therein lies my problem with the book: it is astoundingly antisemitic. It purports the old clichés of the scheming, obsequious, devious jew. In the chapters about the family founder the author describes Meyer Rothschild as having an octopus-like way of doing business, planning, counter-planning and counter-counter-planning. His sons he sends out like hardened business sharks while he sits like a spider in his web in Frankfurt, beguiling the local ruler.
This all sounds like distressingly familiar rhetoric.

So despite the authors entertaining way to present a family's history the polemic turn of phrase is rather off-putting.

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amazing rise from getting to sealth

this traces generations of Rothchilds from their genre beginnings to one of the wealthiest families in the world. it is very interesting to see how they were involved i
historic events.

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Fantastic!!!

Superbly written and incredible story.
One of the best books I’ve had the pleasure to listen.

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interesting<br />

well researched hagiography with some ornate midcentury prose. reader good. had tone/attitude I have never heard before in a professional reader.

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  • shane o'hare
  • 01-12-20

How brilliant they all are!!

This reads like it was financed by the family itself. The genesis of the family was interesting and the Napoleon era stuff very good, but it ended up being a list of possessions and a cavalcade of honours. In essence, it got boring. I would have enjoyed more dirt. More proper stories, gossip and maybe a bit more on the cost to humanity of their gathering of wealth. A few antidotes from those 'in the know'.

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  • Arlington Beach
  • 05-16-20

More than just a history book.

Firstly bought this book as an historical book on the Rothschilds, however as a business owner I quickly realised this is an fascinating look into growing a generational business culture.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 12-02-18

Interesting Overview

I did find this book interesting although there were many French phrases which, at times, interrupted the linguistic flow. For those who do not speak French, this can be somewhat confusing. The author reveals many facts about how the Rothschilds were able to amass such a forturne by manipulating the stock market to their advantage and using other people's wealth in order to create their own. A worthwhile read.