Catalogue


The Oxford Companion to World Mythology [electronic resource]
Leeming, David 1937- Author
imprint
New York : Oxford University Press, Incorporated Nov. 2005
description
520 p. ill 06.300 x 09.300 in.
ISBN
0195156692 (Trade Cloth), 9780195156690
format(s)
Book
Subjects
subject term
More Details
imprint
New York : Oxford University Press, Incorporated Nov. 2005
isbn
0195156692 (Trade Cloth)
9780195156690
standard identifier
9780195156690
restrictions
Licensed for access by U. of T. users.
abstract
Annotation Cave paintings at Lascaux, France and Altamira, Spain, fraught with expression thousands of years later; point to an early human desire to form a cultural identity. In the Oxford Companion to World Mythology, David Leeming explores the role of mythology, or myth-logic, in history anddetermines that the dreams of specific cultures add up to a larger collective story of humanity. Stopping short of attempting to be all-inclusive, this fascinating volume will nonetheless be comprehensive, opening with an introduction exploring the nature and dimensions of myth and proposing adefinition as a universal language. Briefly dipping into the ways our understanding of myth has changed from Aristotle and Plato to modern scholars such as Joseph Campbell, the introduction loosely places the concept in its present context and precedes articles on influential mythologists andmythological approaches that appear later in the Companion. The main body of Leeming's work consists of A-Z entries covering all aspects of mythology, including substantial essays on the world's major mythological traditions (Greek, Native American, Indian, Japanese, Sumerian, Egyptian), mythological types and motifs (Descent to the Underworld, the Hero,the Trickster, Creation, the Quest), mythological figures (Odysseus, Zeus, Osiris, Spider Woman, and Inanna) as well as numerous interrelated subjects such as fairly tales and legends. The Companion also locates myth in our lives today, relating it to language patterns, psychology, religion,politics, art, and gender attitudes. Many of the better-known and more significant myths are vividly retold in this volume that will be illustrated with maps, more than 70 black and white images, and eight pages of color highlighting the central role art has often played in the transmission andperpetuation of myth. Following the entries, a rich section of appendices will include family trees of the major pantheons, equivalency charts for the gods of Greece and Rome, Babylon and Sumer, as well as other traditions, an extensive bibliography, and an index.
catalogue key
8021674
target audience
Trade Oxford University Press, Incorporated
A Look Inside
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 2006-07-01:
This volume presents approximately 2,000 concise entries in dictionary format. Leeming (emer., Univ. of Connecticut), in an attempt to be "inclusive and reasonably comprehensive," ranges far outside the Western tradition to cover figures and folklore from Africa, Asia, and the Americas, as well as from the sacred narratives of religions. Thus, one finds here the Christian "Annunciation" and "Assumption" alongside Andromache, Andromeda, and other stories from Greco-Roman myth. Approximately 100 black-and-white illustrations, along with a few color plates, provide examples of artistic renderings of various myths. The volume is quite thoroughly cross-referenced and indexed, making it easy to locate entries, for example, on "Trickster" or "Twin" characters in various traditions. A "Cultural Listing of Entries," providing a list of articles by geographic region or broad theme, opens the work. Genealogical charts, equivalency tables for Greco-Roman and Sumerian-Babylonian names, and a lengthy bibliography conclude it. This work should find a place in any general reference collection. ABC-CLIO and other publishers have brought forth many more specialized works, e.g., Nectar & Ambrosia: An Encyclopedia of Food in World Mythology, by Tamra Andrews (CH, Apr'01, 38-4203). But there are few recent one-volume works that attempt to cover the mythology of all regions and cultures; for example, World Mythology, ed. by Roy Willis, 1993, is organized in chapters by geographic area. A comparison with the trusty Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase & Fable, compiled by Adrian Room (CH, Oct'01, 39-0636; 17th edition, 2005) shows that while both offer the Fates, Faust, and Faunus, only the Companion includes Fafnir, Faro, or Fuxi. Summing Up: Recommended. Lower-level undergraduates through faculty/researchers; general readers. B. Juhl University of Arkansas, Fayetteville
Appeared in Library Journal on 2006-02-15:
Leeming (English & comparative literature, emeritus, Univ. of Connecticut; From Olympus to Camelot: The World of European Mythology), who has authored books on various aspects of mythology, many with a specific regional focus, has compiled a resource encompassing the important mythological topics from cultures around the world. This single volume begins with a list of the broad cultural headings-e.g., African, Chinese, Greek-with references to related subjects. The 2000 A-to-Z entries, which cover mythological figures (e.g., Zeus, Inanna), types and motifs (e.g., "the Hero," "the Quest"), and traditions (e.g., Greek, Native American), include ample cross references. The articles range in length from several pages for the major Greek, Egyptian, Mesopotamian, and Celtic traditions to shorter entries for particular beliefs, concepts, and characters. Influential mythologists and modern-day philosophies are also covered. Leeming's introductory essay, "The Nature and Dimensions of Myth," defines the scope of mythology in articulating a cultural and universal identity. The book is further enhanced by more than 70 black-and-white illustrations as well as several pages of color plates depicting mythological subjects. Following the entries is a series of appendixes that includes Pantheonic charts, a lengthy bibliography, and a thorough index. Bottom Line This useful resource is comparable to Larousse World Mythology (Smithmark, 1989), yet more concise and comprehensive in its coverage. Highly recommended for academic reference collections.-Eloise Hitchcock, Western Carolina Univ. Lib., Cullowhee, NC (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Reviews
Review Quotes
"Covering a broad range of belief systems dating from prehistoric times to the twenty-first century, this compendium not only traces the myths of various cultures but also shows how a number of common elements thread through many sacred stories from disparate geographic areas. The strength ofthe Oxford Companion to World Mythology lies in its overview articles on mythologies of particular eras and cultures and in its thematic entries that bring together mythological concepts from a variety of traditions."--Booklist
"Dependable information, clear and concise writing, and well-chosen illustrations make this a useful resource. The volume offers easy access to a broad range of topics.... This is a grand book." --School Library Journal
"Dependable information, clear and concise writing, and well-chosen illustrations make this a useful resource. The volume offers easy access to a broad range of topics.... This is a grand book."--School Library Journal
"Inclusive and reasonably comprehensive....This work should find a place in any general reference collection."--Choice
"Inclusive and reasonably comprehensive....This work should find a place in any general reference collection."--Choice "The strength of the Oxford Companion to World Mythology lies in its overview articles on mythologies of particular eras and cultures.... Scholarly but rarely abstruse, this reasonably priced volume is particularly suitable for academic and larger public libraries."--Booklist "Dependable information, clear and concise writing, and well-chosen illustrations make this a useful resource. The volume offers easy access to a broad range of topics.... This is a grand book."--School Library Journal
"The scope of this companion to world mythology belies its compact, easy-to-hold format...Leeming's Companion has a place in any library." --Voice of Youth Advocates
"The scope of this companion to world mythology belies its compact, easy-to-hold format...Leeming's Companion has a place in any library."--Voice of Youth Advocates
"The scope of this companion to world mythology belies its compact, easy-to-hold format...Leeming's Companion has a place in any library."--Voice of Youth Advocates "Inclusive and reasonably comprehensive....This work should find a place in any general reference collection."--Choice "The strength of the Oxford Companion to World Mythology lies in its overview articles on mythologies of particular eras and cultures.... Scholarly but rarely abstruse, this reasonably priced volume is particularly suitable for academic and larger public libraries."--Booklist "Dependable information, clear and concise writing, and well-chosen illustrations make this a useful resource. The volume offers easy access to a broad range of topics.... This is a grand book."--School Library Journal
"The scope of this companion to world mythology belies its compact, easy-to-hold format...Leeming'sCompanionhas a place in any library."--Voice of Youth Advocates "Inclusive and reasonably comprehensive....This work should find a place in any general reference collection."--Choice "The strength of theOxford Companion to World Mythologylies in its overview articles on mythologies of particular eras and cultures.... Scholarly but rarely abstruse, this reasonably priced volume is particularly suitable for academic and larger public libraries."--Booklist "Dependable information, clear and concise writing, and well-chosen illustrations make this a useful resource. The volume offers easy access to a broad range of topics.... This is a grand book."--School Library Journal
"Thoroughly cross-referenced.... This work should find a place in anygeneral reference collection....Recommended."--Choice
"Thoroughly cross-referenced.... This work should find a place in any general reference collection....Recommended."--Choice
"Inclusive and reasonably comprehensive....This work should find a place in any general reference collection."--Choice"Thoroughly cross-referenced.... This work should find a place in any general reference collection....Recommended."--Choice"Covering a broad range of belief systems dating from prehistoric times to the twenty-first century, this compendium not only traces the myths of various cultures but also shows how a number of common elements thread through many sacred stories from disparate geographic areas. The strength of the Oxford Companion to World Mythology lies in its overview articles on mythologies of particular eras and cultures and in its thematic entries that bring togethermythological concepts from a variety of traditions."--Booklist"Dependable information, clear and concise writing, and well-chosen illustrations make this a useful resource. The volume offers easy access to a broad range of topics.... This is a grand book."--School Library Journal"The scope of this companion to world mythology belies its compact, easy-to-hold format...Leeming's Companion has a place in any library."--Voice of Youth Advocates
This item was reviewed in:
School Library Journal,
Library Journal, February 2006
Choice, July 2006
Booklist, August 2006
Voice of Youth Advocates, February 2007
To find out how to look for other reviews, please see our guides to finding book reviews in the Sciences or Social Sciences and Humanities.
Summaries
Bowker Data Service Summary
A comprehensive treatment of folklore & mythology from different cultures around the world.
Main Description
Cave paintings at Lascaux, France and Altamira, Spain, fraught with expression thousands of years later; point to an early human desire to form a cultural identity. In the Oxford Companion to World Mythology, David Leeming explores the role of mythology, or myth-logic, in history anddetermines that the dreams of specific cultures add up to a larger collective story of humanity. Stopping short of attempting to be all-inclusive, this fascinating volume will nonetheless be comprehensive, opening with an introduction exploring the nature and dimensions of myth and proposing adefinition as a universal language. Briefly dipping into the ways our understanding of myth has changed from Aristotle and Plato to modern scholars such as Joseph Campbell, the introduction loosely places the concept in its present context and precedes articles on influential mythologists andmythological approaches that appear later in the Companion. The main body of Leeming's work consists of A-Z entries covering all aspects of mythology, including substantial essays on the world's major mythological traditions (Greek, Native American, Indian, Japanese, Sumerian, Egyptian), mythological types and motifs (Descent to the Underworld, the Hero,the Trickster, Creation, the Quest), mythological figures (Odysseus, Zeus, Osiris, Spider Woman, and Inanna) as well as numerous interrelated subjects such as fairly tales and legends. The Companion also locates myth in our lives today, relating it to language patterns, psychology, religion,politics, art, and gender attitudes. Many of the better-known and more significant myths are vividly retold in this volume that will be illustrated with maps, more than 70 black and white images, and eight pages of color highlighting the central role art has often played in the transmission andperpetuation of myth. Following the entries, a rich section of appendices will include family trees of the major pantheons, equivalency charts for the gods of Greece and Rome, Babylon and Sumer, as well as other traditions, an extensive bibliography, and an index.
Main Description
Cave paintings at Lascaux, France and Altamira, Spain, fraught with expression thousands of years later; point to an early human desire to form a cultural identity. In The Oxford Companion to World Mythology, David Leeming explores the role of mythology, or myth-logic, in history anddetermines that the dreams of specific cultures add up to a larger collective story of humanity. Stopping short of attempting to be all-inclusive, this fascinating volume will nonetheless be comprehensive, opening with an introduction exploring the nature and dimensions of myth and proposing adefinition as a universal language. Briefly dipping into the ways our understanding of myth has changed from Aristotle and Plato to modern scholars such as Joseph Campbell, the introduction loosely places the concept in its present context and precedes articles on influential mythologists andmythological approaches that appear later in the Companion.The main body of Leeming's work consists of A-Z entries covering all aspects of mythology, including substantial essays on the world's major mythological traditions (Greek, Native American, Indian, Japanese, Sumerian, Egyptian), mythological types and motifs (Descent to the Underworld, the Hero, theTrickster, Creation, the Quest), mythological figures (Odysseus, Zeus, Osiris, Spider Woman, and Inanna) as well as numerous interrelated subjects such as fairy tales and legends. The Companion also locates myth in our lives today, relating it to language patterns, psychology, religion, politics,art, and gender attitudes. Many of the better-known and more significant myths are vividly retold in this volume that will be illustrated with maps, more than 70 black and white images, and eight pages of color highlighting the central role art has often played in the transmission and perpetuationof myth. Following the entries, a rich section of appendices will include family trees of the major pantheons, equivalency charts for the gods of Greece and Rome, Babylon and Sumer, as well as other traditions, an extensive bibliography, and an index.
Main Description
Written by David Leeming, one of the world's most trusted voices on mythology, The Oxford Companion to World Mythology, is a lively, non-pedantic, yet intellectually sound book that will engage the reader and reveal the extraordinary depth and beauty of the world of myth. Featuring thousands of articles on heroes, villains, mythologists, and mythological approaches in an A-Z format, the Companion also offers an extensive bibliography, pantheonic family trees, and charts of equivalent deities. Containing approximately seventy-five black and white maps and illustrations, plus dozens of colour images, this is the perfect reference for everyone interested in mythology.
Table of Contents
Prefacep. vii
A Note to the Readerp. ix
Introductionp. xi
Cultural Listing of Entriesp. xv
A-Z Entriesp. 1
Pantheonic Family Trees and Charts of Equivalent Deitiesp. 415
Bibliographyp. 419
Picture Creditsp. 435
Indexp. 441
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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