Trieste and the Meaning of Nowhere

Trieste and the Meaning of Nowhere Jan Morris has crafted a meditation on a most unusual city James as she was then first visited Trieste as a soldier at the end of World War II Since then the city has come to represent her own life

  • Title: Trieste and the Meaning of Nowhere
  • Author: Jan Morris
  • ISBN: 9780571204687
  • Page: 491
  • Format: Paperback
  • Jan Morris has crafted a meditation on a most unusual city James as she was then first visited Trieste as a soldier at the end of World War II Since then, the city has come to represent her own life, with all its hopes, disillusionments, loves and memories.

    One thought on “Trieste and the Meaning of Nowhere”

    1. Sometimes when I finish a book I have a strange feeling, sort of a nostalgia, a loss of a world, a "being sorry that the book is over". It was usually good narrative that used to give me that feeling - until I read this book, the only descriptive travel book that managed to catch my heart and not my brain only.My position toward this book is privileged, since I was born and raised in Trieste, and even though I haven't been living there for some time it's still my dearest town, the one I know bet [...]

    2. Trieste - "An outsider that I am, I still see myself as part of that half-real, half-imagined seaport, so now that after all these years I am writing a book about Trieste (at age 75, my last book, too)it is bound to be a work partly of civic impressionism, but partly of introspection----or self-indulgence."The Habsburg monarchy in Vienna brought it into the modern world and chose Trieste to be its main deep-sea port on the Adriatic. By the twentieth century it prospered from trade with Austria, [...]

    3. For as long as I can remember I’ve wanted to visit Trieste. In 1980s Nakhalpara, poring over the atlas at home after school, that odd name snuck away at the top of the Adriatic Sea, just where the leg of Italy meets the European landmass – that name “Trieste” used to make me wonder. A few years later, the ringing words of Churchill’s Fulton speech floated down across the decades in grainy black-and-white on BBC: “From Stettin in the Baltic to Trieste in the Adriatic, an iron curtain [...]

    4. This is Jan Morris‘s melancholy love letter to a city that was formed by a dozen different civilizations over the course of four thousand years but seems not to belong to any of them. Indo-Europeans known as Illyrians founded the city, then the Romans took it, the city-state of Venice colonized it, the Habsburgs occupied it, and finally the modern state of Italy got it after World War I. A hundred years ago, Trieste was one of the most bustling ports in Europe but is now largely forgotten, eve [...]

    5. Morris explors the idea of being 'in between' in this book. She first visited Trieste as James Morris, a young sailor. Her reflections on Trieste, written as a much older Jan Morris, contemplate her own status as a person born between genders, and Trieste as a city between worlds, linked backed to Vienna and Austria as the Mediterranean sea port for the Habsburg Empire. It is also a city of the Mediterranean, now part of Italy but not at all convinced about that. This is a haunting book, misty, [...]

    6. It took me a long time to get through "Trieste and the Meaning of Nowhere" because it’s a dense book, full of centuries’ worth of historical lessons and anecdotes, and because Morris writes in a careful third-person style that’s very different from the zany, personal stories that are popular now.The time was well spent, though. Morris paints an interesting portrait of Trieste, a city I’ve never been to (and one which, according to a possibly apocryphal 1999 poll, 70% of Italians don’t [...]

    7. We savor those rare experiences when we discover a marvelous author with a lengthy bibliography. Jan Morris is such a find for me. As a fan of travel writing, how can I have overlooked her all these years? Looking forward to catching up on her substantial back catalog.I read this on a plane to Trieste. By the time I touched down, I felt I understood the town, that I had gained a sense of it in a way that effectively melds history, culture, geography, inhabitants, quirks, and features. On our fir [...]

    8. This is the final book by travel writer Jan Morris, and is both a fascinating account of a lesser-known city and a meditation on Morris' own feelings as she reflects on her memories. It is beautifully written, thoughtful and evocative. Trieste is portrayed as a melancholy place, a kind of 'nowhere' that has passed through changes of history and geography until it ended up with no real place to belong. Even so, Morris finds beauty and kindness in the city and its people, and it is this sensitivit [...]

    9. Trieste, the sad port of lost Mitteleuropa, is a city of palaces, banks and halls that got lost in history, as borders shifted and old alliances changed. It’s a place that inspires melancholy, a longing for an imagined past.The city finds itself in Italy now. Its Piazza Grande now perhaps too proudly calls itself the Piazza Unita d’Italia. But Slovenia and the old Habsburg empire is still in the air. And on the Piazza della Borsa a banner pleaded the US and the UK to please come back and rei [...]

    10. Before going to Trieste, I read this 2003 book by Jan Morris. It was the last book by this formidable travel writer, which she did in her seventies. I decided to re-read it after visiting Trieste. Morris writes with such depth of insight and feeling that the city is more vivid than if I visited without reading her book.

    11. Jan Morris is exceptional in her coverage of a place and capturing it in its feeling and its personality. Hers isn't a travel book so much as it is a chronicle of the evidence she shows over and again as to the uniqueness of the city of Trieste.The author helps us know the place through its history, its geography and its architecture. This Italian city to the author is arbitrarily part of that country now but it's history makes it more a regional place, so important within the Australian-Hungari [...]

    12. Tågläsning på väg från Paris mot Trieste. Tycker mycket om tonen hos Morris. Enligt henne är den norditalienska stadensceral, surreal, lonely, subliminal, idiosynchratic, cosmopolitan, crepuscular, compelling, brooding, ambiguous, wistful, maudlin, peculiar, stagnant, redundant, unfulfilled, elusivean ethnic enclave, industrial clutter, hinterland, limbo, sweet tristesse, chimera, unspecified yearning, lost continent, utopiacuriously haunting, defiantly eclectic, habitually melancholicför [...]

    13. Tiene suficientes historias de monarcas exiliados y capillas diminutas para que casi olvide las ocasionales exaltaciones del imperio británico. Es muy triste, eso sí.

    14. If you've done a bit of traveling, unless you live in an overimagined place like Venice or Vegas, Paris or London, chances are you've at some point been asked to describe your home city. Travelers are bicurious little insects: always already planning their next trip. It's a difficult task, more difficult then you would think pre-question, perhaps. Because how do you tease out the loose bricks in the pavement, the minuscule scratchings on the wall, the things that explain what it's like to actual [...]

    15. I literally forced myself to finish this book. I just couldn’t give up the hope that this writer, who so enchanted me in her memoir Conundrum, will tell me something urgent, something beautiful, something enchanting, something wise. While beauty and enchantment do grace some of the pages, and there are occasional glimpses of wisdom, the urgency just wasn’t there. Not for me, at least. I don’t normally love travel writing unless it has some emotional story to tell too, or if it offers some [...]

    16. Jan Morris is one of the best travel writers around. I had the pleasure of reading "TRIESTE AND THE MEANING OF NOWHERE" several years ago. Trieste is a city that I have wanted to visited for so long. (Not many people know that Napoleon passed a night there in 1797 while commander of the Army of Italy during France's war with Austria.) And reading this book steeled my resolve to visit there, which I did in July 2010. One of my fondest memories from that trip is sitting on the dock at sunset as a [...]

    17. I found this writing style delightfully eclectic. The writer describes Trieste in the past and present with recounts of wonderful events and characters. It is educational on several levels, historical, architectural and anthropolical, all while entertaining you with many humorous accounts. Completion of this book left me with a sense of personal improvement and a desire to read more by jan Morris.

    18. I loved this book. I read it in preparation for visiting Trieste, and it is not to be confused with a travel guide. It's more of a memoir of Morris's relationship to the city, and ultimately how they mirror one another. There is some great history here as well—things not on the usual curricular lists, which I always find edifying. Jan Morris is a masterful writer — I look forward to seeking out her other books.

    19. So much more than a travel book. So much more than a memoir. So much more than history or cultural exploration. This book, Jan Morris' last, is really a love song to growth, loss and life's miracles as reflected through her experiences in one city; Trieste.

    20. This book is wonderful. Although she does recount much of the history of this little city on the edge of the Adriatic, Jan Morris makes the reader imagine the people (famous and no so famous) wandering about the streets, drinking at the cafes. Definitely worth reading before going.

    21. A lovely farewell tribute to a grand old imperial city and to a writer's life. The explanation of the subtitle, which comes near the end, brought tears to my eyes.

    22. I selected this title because I started to wonder where the next inexpensive, soon-to-be hip, place to live in Europe would be and if I could get in before out-priced. I've never lived anywhere hip and hope to do so in my retirement. I wondered, could Trieste be that next place? My fav coffee is Illy, headquartered there. Could be a match made in heaven. And so I discovered Jan (formerly James) Morris, whose style appeals to me. She's smart and observant. I like her coinages, like Triesticity. I [...]

    23. The author had a complex relationship with Trieste, titling the book Trieste and the Meaning of Nowhere. He first visited the city just after World War II, a difficult time in Trieste when the victors were seeking revenge for the cruel treatment by the Nazis. He was a young British soldier during the short period when the UK and US controlled the city while Yugoslavia and Italy competed to annex it. But the major influence on the city was the Habsburg Empire, which made Trieste in effect the por [...]

    24. Trieste, the sad port of lost Mitteleuropa, is a city of palaces, banks and halls that got lost in history, as borders shifted and old alliances changed. It’s a place that inspires melancholy, a longing for an imagined past.The city finds itself in Italy now. Its Piazza Grande now perhaps too proudly calls itself the Piazza Unita d’Italia. But Slovenia and the old Habsburg empire is still in the air. And on the Piazza della Borsa a banner pleaded the US and the UK to please come back and rei [...]

    25. "I cannot always see Trieste in my mind eye. Who can? It is not one of your iconic cities, instantly visible in the memory or the imagination. It offers no unforgettable landmark, no universally familiar melody, no unmistakable cuisine, hardly a single native name that everyone knows. It is a middle-sized, essentially middle-aged Italian seaport, ethnically ambivalent, historically confused, only intermittently prosperous, tucked away at the top right-hand corner of the Adriatic Sea, and so lack [...]

    26. Such a lovely book. Jan Morris's writing is always so elegant. Beautiful flow, wonderful vocabulary and able to make almost any subject interesting. Having just visited Trieste her descriptions were particularly resonant but I also learned so much about a place that while it may not always be inherently interesting has such a history that every corner has a hidden past. Not just a travel book, in fact not really a travel book. A meditation on the past and limited future, a perfect gem. (Purchase [...]

    27. This was (near enough) set reading before a trip to Trieste but it really isn't a guide book, history, or anything else; although it has aspects of these things. It's almost Morris's distillation of Trieste as an idea as much as a physical place. And it's a place that has changed 'ownership' (i.e. country) many times, which partially leads to that sense of somewhere and nowhere at the same time.The problem now is that I'm almost talking myself into re-reading the book soon - but I've got her "Ve [...]

    28. I will be visiting Trieste for the first time in 2018, and I have long followed the writing and career of Jan Morris (starting with her memoir "Conundrum," one of the first trans memoirs), so reading this book was a must. It did not disappoint. Morris paints a layered portrait of a historically significant and often overlooked city in the very northeast corner of Italy. I can't wait to see it for myself!

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