Casanova:1. Giovanni Giacomo Casanova, Chevalier de Seingalt (1725-1798). An Italian adventurer, traveller, diplomat, historian, mathematician, chemist, composer, playwright, and author of 12 volumes of Memoirs written when he was forty-nine. Histoire de ma vie runs 4,545 pages and covers his sex-life only up to the summer of 1774. Although a compulsive seducer of women fearful of emotional commitment, Casanova, unlike the fictitional Don-Juan , was not sexually exploitive; he approached his relations with women with an emotional and spiritual intimacy . Casanova was an intellectual associate of James Boswell, Benjamin Franklin, Goethe, Frederick the Great, Voltaire and d'Alembert.
Quote: Casanova. History of my Life . Translation by William R. Trask (1966) Preface:
(1) First line : ' I begin by declaring to my reader that, by everything good or bad that I have done throughout my life , I am sure that I have earned merit or incurred guilt, and that hence I must consider myself a free agent .'
(2) ' Though man is free, he must not believe that he is free to do whatever he pleases. He becones a slave as soon as he decides to act when he is moved by some passion . Nisi paret imperat ('Unless it obeys, it commands.' Horace). He who has the strength to defer acting until he is calm again is the wise man . Such a being is rare .'
(3) Last line : ' For my part, since I have always admitted that I was the chief cause of all the misfortunes which have befallen me, I have rejoiced in my ability to be my own pupil, and in my duty to love my teacher .'
2. Or: casanova / a proper Casanova , a real ladies'-man , a great-lover , a skilled seducer of many women, especially one who brags about his female conquests. See ladies'-man and philanderer for synonyms.
See Also: Casanova, erotocrat, no Lothario, redingote d'Angleterre
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