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Signs of the Zodiac: A Reference Guide to Historical, Mythological, and Cultural Associations

Overview

The zodiacal signs impact art, advertising, literature, history, mythology, psychology, health, and language with their evocative imagery, symbols and scientific and religious lore. This fact-filled reference guide pulls together applications of the zodiacal signs in those fields and others. Each sign is explicated in a separate chapter which discusses its origin and importance in diverse cultures, including its history, artistic applications, traditions, literary and religious interpretations, psychological ...

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Overview

The zodiacal signs impact art, advertising, literature, history, mythology, psychology, health, and language with their evocative imagery, symbols and scientific and religious lore. This fact-filled reference guide pulls together applications of the zodiacal signs in those fields and others. Each sign is explicated in a separate chapter which discusses its origin and importance in diverse cultures, including its history, artistic applications, traditions, literary and religious interpretations, psychological significance, and application to notable historical and contemporary figures. An organized overview with cross-references and indexing allows the zodiac to be studied from numerous points of view. Artistic representations of each of the 12 houses accompany the text.

Introductory chapters on the origins of the zodiacal signs, the historical foundation of astrology, the zodiac in the first millennium A.D., and the zodiac in the arts and sciences provide a thorough overview and comparative examination of the influence of the zodiac in human history and thought. A detailed timeline synchronizes discoveries and development of zodiacal associations and thought around the world. Appendices list planetary correspondences in jewels, metals, herbs, color, flavor, form, shapes, food preferences, and senses, and the symptoms and pathologies associated with birth signs. The work also contains an extensive bibliography and index.

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 9 UpBrimming with astrological, astronomical, historical, cultural, and mythological information, this systematic, wide-ranging study lacks only a sufficiency of illustrations to keep it from being the last word on the subject, at least for small and midsized reference collections. After brief descriptions of zodiacal variants from other parts of the world, plus chapters on the historical foundations of astrology and its pervasiveness in the arts and sciences, Snodgrass treats each sign to a full workover: major stars in each, mythological background and symbology, commonly accepted character traits of those born under its influence, and thumbnail biographies of select prominent people who exemplify those traits. No fewer than five appendixes, including a nice table for hypochondriacs titled "Zodiacal Pathology," precede a large, if not exhaustive, bibliography and index. Except for direct quotes, which are frequent and generous, Snodgrass seldom cites her specific sources. Though her writing style is distinctly flowery "The nightly shift of the sidereal mosaic has supplanted the boisterous stories of Chiron and Hercules with a resplendent serenity", the absence of pictures, aside from a stylized image of each chapter's head, turns parts of the discourse into recitations of abstract facts. Nonetheless, though not a reference tool for professional astrologers, this is detailed enough to give researchers from any other field a solid grounding in one of humanity's most ancient lines of inquiry.John Peters, New York Public Library
Booknews
Provides historical background relating the Zodiac to art, philosophy, science, and religion, drawing on sources from the Bible to Nancy Reagan. Each sign is explicated in a separate chapter discussing its origin and importance in diverse cultures, covering literary, religious, and psychological interpretations. Includes chapters on the historical foundation of astrology, a history from the first through the 20th centuries, and the zodiac in the arts and sciences. For general readers and students of astrology. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780313302763
  • Publisher: Greenwood Publishing Group, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 9/30/1997
  • Pages: 264
  • Lexile: 1370L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.38 (w) x 9.51 (h) x 0.99 (d)

Meet the Author

MARY ELLEN SNODGRASS is an award-winning author of reference works and English and Latin textbooks.

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Table of Contents

Preface
Introduction
Ch. 1 The Zodiac 1
Ch. 2 The Historical Foundation of Astrology 11
Ch. 3 The Zodiac from the First Century to the Twentieth Century 35
Ch. 4 The Zodiac in the Arts and Sciences 57
Ch. 5 Aries 81
Ch. 6 Taurus 91
Ch. 7 Gemini 105
Ch. 8 Cancer 119
Ch. 9 Leo 129
Ch. 10 Virgo 141
Ch. 11 Libra 153
Ch. 12 Scorpio 161
Ch. 13 Sagittarius 171
Ch. 14 Capricorn 181
Ch. 15 Aquarius 191
Ch. 16 Pisces 201
App. I A Time Line of Developments in Zodiacal Study 209
App. II A Comparative Chart of Elements of the Constellations of the Zodiac 215
App. III Geographical Areas Linked with Sun Signs 217
App. IV Planetary Correspondences 219
App. V Zodiacal Pathology 223
Bibliography 225
Index 233
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