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Dragon's Trail

3.51  ·  Rating Details ·  47 Ratings  ·  16 Reviews
Raphael's "St. George and the Dragon" is the work of a genius -- an exquisitely rendered vision of heroism and innocence by one of the greatest painters of all time. Yet the painting's creation is only the beginning of its fascinating story, which spans centuries of power play and intrigue, and has made it a witness to the rise and fall of the great powers of the Western w ...more
ebook, 304 pages
Published April 17th 2007 by Simon & Schuster Adult Publishing (first published 2006)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Jennyb
Jul 28, 2014 Jennyb rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: artfully-done
Raphael's St George and the Dragon's peripatetic journey to end up in the National Gallery in DC is a hugely interesting tale. The way that tale is told in this book... Well, let's just say that the book doesn't diminish the interest of its provenance, but at times it doesn't contribute hugely to it either. My main gripe is that every person whose hands this painting passed through is characterized the same way: ambitious, greedy and grasping art collectors, slavering after the status this tiny ...more
Laurie
Mar 31, 2016 Laurie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I hesitated to get this book, thinking it might be very dry reading, but it was actually quite compelling. I learned some history along the way and realized all these masterpieces you see in museums have quite a story behind them.
David Serxner
I wish I could say this was a fantastic book, but I cannot. It is a history of Raphael's masterpiece "St. George and the Dragon" in the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC. I was up this weekend and bought a damaged copy in the sale rack in the Gallery Bookshop. The book is inexpensive enough, only $25.00 hardcover, which is a nice price. There are no color illustrations, only small details of the Raphael for each new chapter, and no other illustrations of anything else at all. There is no ...more
Carin Marais
Apr 19, 2012 Carin Marais rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In The Dragon’s Trail, Pitman tells the story of a renowned classic masterpiece by one of the Renaissance’s most famous artists. I doubt that anyone can stand in front of (or simply look at a print of) one of Raphael’s paintings without being moved by the beauty and talent of the artist’s brush. His painting, St. George and the Dragon – commissioned in 1506 – was painted when Raphael was only twenty-three years old. But Pitman does not simply tell the story of how it was painted or the reason fo ...more
Chris
Sep 25, 2013 Chris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: art, washington-dc, museum
Full Review at Booklikes

I am always amazed at how small this painting it is. I’ve seen it plenty of times, but its size surprises me. I always think it should be bigger. But for all its smallness, it is a very impressive painting.



Pitman’s book is a history of the painting, much like the television series Private Life of a Masterpiece (which if you haven’t seen, you should).
Rita
Jul 18, 2011 Rita rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very interesting book that makes you think about the history of paintings. As the author said you are told about the artist and style but not about previous owners. I liked the personal info from the author about how she feels about the painting.

This painting is in the National Gallery in Washington DC.
Kristin
I never really thought about the history of ownership of Raphael's St. George and the Dragon, which is odd considering I'm one of the many people who have fallen under it's spell. It is just too bad that this book had to deal with the author's flights of fancy at times. I wish there were citations at the end of the book.
Karen
Feb 24, 2008 Karen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So I just can't finish this book. Partly 'cuz I'm too damn busy and partly 'cuz sometimes I'm just not into it. It's basically the provenance of a Raphael painting. It tells the history of all the different people who owned it over the centuries. There's more about the collectors than there is about the painting. Of course, I knew this when I bought it.
Holly
Apr 30, 2013 Holly rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history
Perfect book to engage the general reader with art history, perfect for young adult to adult readers with a bit of curiosity about a good story about a little painting making its rounds through history.
Martha
Mar 05, 2008 Martha rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
A nice biography book of a great painting. The author gets a little rambling & redundant sometimes, but I enjoyed it.
Nicole
Dec 09, 2008 Nicole rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A really good book about Raphael's St. George and the Dragon. It follows the trail of the painting and most of its owners. A very interesting read!
Veronica
Sep 29, 2010 Veronica rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A very interesting look into the life and history of a painting. The people who owned and sought it, and the political and social changes witnessed by it were fascinating.
Stephanie
I'm only in the beginning, but so far I can say the writing is completely dull. Which is too bad, because the story itself is good.
Converse
Apr 11, 2010 Converse rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, history, art
Art History through its buyers. Tells of the migration of Raphael's "St. George and the Dragon" from Italy, to England, France, Russia, and the USA.
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