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The Oxford Dictionary of Classical Myth and Religion
     

The Oxford Dictionary of Classical Myth and Religion

by Simon Price
 

Drawn from the acclaimed Oxford Classical Dictionary, The Oxford Dictionary of Classical Myth and Religion offers a fully rounded guide to all aspects of religious life and thought in ancient Greece and Rome. Highly authoritative, this new book covers not only Greek mythologies and Roman festivals, but also devotes attention to topics such as Greek and Roman

Overview

Drawn from the acclaimed Oxford Classical Dictionary, The Oxford Dictionary of Classical Myth and Religion offers a fully rounded guide to all aspects of religious life and thought in ancient Greece and Rome. Highly authoritative, this new book covers not only Greek mythologies and Roman festivals, but also devotes attention to topics such as Greek and Roman religious places, monuments, authors and texts, religious organization, imagery, divination, astrology, and magic. Unlike many other references on ancient Greece and Rome, the Dictionary also includes many entries on Judaism and Christianity in the classical world.
The editors, area advisors for the third edition of the Oxford Classical Dictionary, have selected, revised, edited, and in some instances completely recast a large number of entries from the OCD to create this handy and accessible reference. The main text is supplemented by an important introductory essay providing overviews of mythology, religious pluralism in the ancient world, and the reception of myths from antiquity to the present. In addition to a helpful thematic index and extensive cross-references, the text is further supported by three maps and six genealogies.
Backed by the authority and scholarly rigor of the renowned Oxford Classical Dictionary, The Oxford Dictionary of Classical Myth and Religion is a valuable A-Z reference and is as ideal a tool for students and teachers of ancient history as it is for all classics lovers.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"A model of comprehensiveness and clarity....It is an excellent addition to the series."—School Library Journal

"A generally accessible and academically current compendium of information on gods and holy beings, religious practices, festivals, sacred rites, myths, authors, and texts....a useful one-volume compendium."—Library Journal

"A model of comprehensiveness and clarity....It is an excellent addition to the series." —School Library Journal

Library Journal
Oxford University classicists Price and Kearns have selected, revised, and edited many entries from The Oxford Classical Dictionary (3d ed.) to create this ready reference. Instead of separating mythology and Judeo-Christian religion into separate references, this work covers all religious life in the ancient Greco-Roman world. The result is a generally accessible and academically current compendium of information on gods and holy beings, religious practices, festivals, sacred sites, myths, authors, and texts of the period. The reader will find not only Athena and Zeus but also Jesus Christ and St. Augustine, Mani and Zoroaster. The introduction does several things: it sets local, Panhellenic, and Roman mythologies in context, considers the pluralistic Roman world without an authoritative sacred book or powerful religious hierarchy, asserts that multiple Judaisms and Christianities existed, and discusses the reception of myth through the ages, especially the historian's struggle with myth as history, the rationalization and allegorization of myth, and myth as a way of constructing meaning. Though unfortunately the book lacks illustrations, it does include maps, a useful thematic index, and genealogical tables of mythological figures. Recommended for most libraries as a useful one-volume compendium for the educated reader.-William P. Collins, Library of Congress Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal
Gr 10 Up-Culled from the Oxford Classical Dictionary, third edition (2003), these entries cover the whole of spiritual life in the ancient Mediterranean, from Minoan-Mycenaean religion through Near Eastern Judaisms [sic] and early Christianities [sic]. The compact introductory essay on mythology, pluralism, and reception of myths is a model of comprehensiveness and clarity. Most entries cover personalities (gods, heroes, authors, historical figures), but several of them offer concise summaries of related topics: religious architecture, funerary art, apocalyptic literature, places and rituals, organizations, and calendars. Entries on several dozen concepts (e.g., fasting, deformity, theodicy, pollution, the body, hubris) are fascinating. However, there is no entry for "Underworld." References to substantial retellings in ancient texts (e.g., Sophocles, Homer) follow relevant entries. Cross-references are easily identified. Pronunciation help, alas, is omitted. A brief annotated bibliography, thematic index, six genealogies, and three detailed maps greatly add to the volume's utility. Longer than Mike Dixon-Kennedy's Encyclopedia of Greco-Roman Mythology (ABC-CLIO, 1998), which does not include religion, this book emphasizes historical connections. It devotes a half page to Xenophanes, for instance, who does not appear in Kennedy's volume, but omits Encyclopedia's "Xanthus." The specialized nature of the dictionary makes it essential for only a few collections. Nevertheless, it is an excellent addition to the series.-Patricia D. Lothrop, St. George's School, Newport, RI Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780192802880
Publisher:
Oxford University Press, USA
Publication date:
10/09/2003
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
640
Product dimensions:
9.30(w) x 6.30(h) x 1.50(d)

Meet the Author

Simon Price has been teaching Ancient History at Oxford since 1981 and is the author of numerous books on religion in ancient Greece and Rome. He has worked extensively on ancient religions, primarily Greek and Roman, but he is also interested in the relations between those religions and Judaism and Christianity. Emily Kearns has held various teaching appointments in Oxford and London since 1990 and has been lecturer in Classical Languages and Literature at St. Hilda's College, Oxford.

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