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The Rape of Europa

The Fate of Europe's Treasures in the Third Reich and the Second World War

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Paperback published by Vintage (Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group)

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About This Book
Winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award

The cast of characters includes Hitler and Goering, Gertrude Stein and Marc Chagall--not to mention works by artists from Leonardo da Vinci to Pablo Picasso. And the story told in this superbly researched and suspenseful book is that of the Third Reich's war on European culture and the Allies' desperate effort to preserve it.

From the Nazi purges of "Degenerate Art" and Goering's shopping sprees in occupied Paris to the perilous journey of the Mona Lisa from Paris and the painstaking reclamation of the priceless treasures of liberated Italy, The Rape of Europa is a sweeping narrative of greed, philistinism, and heroism that combines superlative scholarship with a compelling drama.
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Winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award

The cast of characters includes Hitler and Goering, Gertrude Stein and Marc Chagall--not to mention works by artists from Leonardo da Vinci to Pablo Picasso. And the story told in this superbly researched and suspenseful book is that of the Third Reich's war on European culture and the Allies' desperate effort to preserve it.

From the Nazi purges of "Degenerate Art" and Goering's shopping sprees in occupied Paris to the perilous journey of the Mona Lisa from Paris and the painstaking reclamation of the priceless treasures of liberated Italy, The Rape of Europa is a sweeping narrative of greed, philistinism, and heroism that combines superlative scholarship with a compelling drama.
Product Details
Paperback (512 pages)
Published: April 25, 1995
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Imprint: Vintage
ISBN: 9780679756866
Other books byLynn H. Nicholas
  • Cruel World

    Cruel World
    The Children of Europe in the Nazi Web
    To be a child in mid-twentieth-century Europe was to be not a person but an object, available for use in the service of the totalitarian state. Very soon after Adolf Hitler came to power, policies of eugenic selection and euthanasia began to weed ill or disabled children out of the New Order by poison, gas, and starvation. Defect-free “good blood” children were subjected to an “education” based on racism, propaganda, and the glorification of the Führer, and were deliberately deprived of free time that would allow independent thought or action. Once the war began, “Nordic”-looking children were kidnapped from families in the conquered lands and subjected to “Germanization.” Meanwhile, hundreds of thousands of “bad blood” children—Jews, Gypsies, Poles, Ukrainians, Russians(were separated from their families and condemned to forced migration, slave labor, sadistic experiments, starvation, and mass execution. At the end of the war, uprooted children of every origin wandered the bombed-out cities and countryside, some having been taken from home at such a young age that they did not know where they had come from or even their own names. Millions surged into and out of DP camps, exploited by political and religious groups, while the Allies and the fledgling United Nations tried mightily to put families back together and to find new homes for the orphans. All the riveting narrative skill and impeccable scholarship that distinguished Lynn Nicholas’s first book, The Rape of Europa (winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award for nonfiction), are present in her study of these terrible crimes against humanity. To research this story she has delved into the governmental and military archives of many nations, and has interviewed countless individuals. She shows the relationship of the deadly Nazi policies to the brutal tactics used in the USSR in the 1930s and to their rehearsal in the Spanish Civil War, and vividly describes the abject failure of Hitler’s campaign to plant Germanizing colonies in the conquered nations. She gives us the stories of survivors of ghastly war-spawned famines(in Greece and Russia in the 1940s, Holland in the “Hunger Winter” of 1945, and Berlin in the Airlift year of 1949(and of British, French, and Dutch children who were evacuated to the countryside; boys and girls sent alone from Europe to England on the Kindertransports; the teenaged soldiers of the Reich; the small veterans of the quarries, the factories, and the camps as well as those who survived in lonely hiding. In Cruel World Lynn Nicholas shows us clearly, and with passionate empathy for the innocent victims, the crimes against children that inevitably result when ideology overwhelms humanity. This powerful book, as it recounts the waking nightmare that enmeshed the lives of Europe’s boys and girls, bears witness to our own responsibility to the children of the twenty-first century. From the Hardcover edition.

    Rescuing Da Vinci

    Rescuing Da Vinci
    Hitler and the Nazis Stole Europe's Great Art...
    Rescuing Davinci uses 460 photographs to tell the "untold story of the "Monuments Men" and their discovery of more than 1,000 repositories filled with millions of items including paintings, sculpture, furniture, archives, and other treasures stolen during WWII by Adolph Hitler and the Nazis. The book includes photoraphs of Hitler designing the Fuhrer Museum, along with photographs of the extraordinary measures taken by museum officials in Europe to protect their masterpieces from the Nazis' planned looting. Ultimately, Hitler and the Nazis' unprecendented theft of Europe gave way to the greatest treasure hunt in history, the search for art and other treasures valued at more than a trillion dollars! The Allies created a special force known as Monuments, Fine Art, and Archives Section comprised of museum directors, curators and art historians - men and women from more than 15 nations - who spent more than six years locating, rescuing, and then returning these treasures to the countries from which they were stolen. Efforts to locate and return missing artwork continue to this day.

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