*Includes pictures of Monet and his most famous art *Includes Monet's quotes *Includes online resources and a bibliography for further reading *Includes a table of contents "Everyone discusses my art and pretends to understand, as if it were necessary to understand, when it is simply necessary to love." - Claude Monet To get a sense of the kind of prestige that Claude Monet's reputation has within the art world, one need only learn that his Le Bassin Aux Nympheas (1919) - from his series of paintings featuring water lilies - sold for the equivalent of more than $70 million. This is an incredibly staggering price, especially considering that early in his life, Monet had been so poor and debt-ridden that some of his paintings were taken from him by creditors. How, exactly, did Monet progress from being an impoverished young Impressionist artist working at the vanguard of European art to the legendary Master whose works command prices near the very pinnacle of the art world? Naturally, Monet's commercial success soared exponentially in the decades following his death in 1926, at a time in which the prices commanded by the great Masters of Western art began rising in price at exponential rates. Yet even during his own lifetime, Monet enjoyed a sharp rise to fame and was canonized as one of the greatest painters in France. Following sharply in the footsteps of Edouard Manet, Claude Monet was one of the first painters identified within the Impressionist circle (indeed, it was Monet himself who coined the label of Impressionist after using it in the title of one of his paintings). Where some artists reach the peak of their acclaim early in life, Monet's star continued to rise even throughout his old age; although some would argue that the last decade or so of his life were anticlimactic, at least from an artistic standpoint, his landmark water lilies were made during his elderly years. And even though Monet would continue to paint well after the canonical period of Impressionism had ended, his name was and remains synonymous with Impressionism, along with cherished acquaintances of his, including such luminaries as Pierre-August Renoir, Camille Pissarro, and Edouard Manet. Simply put, Monet is a monumental figure when it comes to examining Western art during the second half of the 19th century. Like many other great artists, Monet's artistic style developed in tandem with the unfolding changes in his personal life and the professional relationships he maintained. His upbringing was in certain respects unremarkable (at least before the premature death of his mother), but it was during his childhood that Monet cultivated his passion for painting, and even during that time that he met certain artists who would prove instrumental in the nurturing of his prodigious talents. Whether or not Monet was the most brilliant or gifted of the Impressionists is a matter of opinion, but either way, his abilities were molded by his upbringing, his temperament and personality, his formal style, and his standing within the Parisian art world. History's Greatest Artists: The Life and Legacy of Claude Monet looks at the personal background that led to him becoming an artist and the cultural climate in which he rose to fame. Monet's formal technique and artistic legacy are also analyzed, including his working methods and artistic education. Along with pictures of important people, places, and events, you will learn about Monet like never before, in no time at all.