Norse Mythology: A Guide to Gods, Heroes, Rituals, and Beliefs

Norse Mythology: A Guide to Gods, Heroes, Rituals, and Beliefs

by John Lindow
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Overview

Norse Mythology: A Guide to Gods, Heroes, Rituals, and Beliefs by John Lindow

Norse Mythology explores the magical myths and legends of Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Iceland and Viking-Age Greenland and outlines the way the prehistoric tales and beliefs from these regions that have remained embedded in the imagination of the world. The book begins with an Introduction that helps put Scandinavian mythology in place in history, followed by a chapter that explains the meaning of mythic time, and a third section that presents in-depth explanations of each mythological term. These fascinating entries identify particular deities and giants, as well as the places where they dwell and the varied and wily means by which they forge their existence and battle one another. We meet Thor, one of the most powerful gods, who specializes in killing giants using a hammer made for him by dwarfs, not to mention myriad trolls, ogres, humans and strange animals. We learn of the ongoing struggle between the gods, who create the cosmos, and the j?tnar, or giants, who aim to destroy it. In the enchanted world where this mythology takes place, we encounter turbulent rivers, majestic mountains, dense forests, storms, fierce winters, eagles, ravens, salmon and snakes in a landscape closely resembling Scandinavia. Beings travel on ships and on horseback; they eat slaughtered meat and drink mead. Spanning from the inception of the universe and the birth of human beings to the universe's destruction and the mythic future, these sparkling tales of creation and destruction, death and rebirth, gods and heroes will entertain readers and offer insight into the relationship between Scandinavian myth, history, and culture.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780199839698
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Publication date: 10/17/2002
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Sales rank: 395,589
File size: 22 MB
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About the Author

John Lindow is a professor at the University of California, Berkeley specializing in Scandinavian medieval studies and folklore.

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Norse Mythology 3.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 13 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I think the reason why this book has such low reviews is because people were expecting a retelling of the Norse Myths. This book is intended for scholars on the field. It does not tell the stories but rather explains certain concepts and themes within them. This book is an absolutely fantastic tool for anyone considering serious study of Norse mythology (and Germanic mythology in general). The bulk of this book functions like an encyclopedia of characters and terms in Norse mythology. It enumerates attestations, and explains their backgrounds, interpretations, and leading theories surrounding them. This book absolutely acomplishes what it sets out to do. For those who simply want the actual stories, look for translations of the Prose Edda and Poetic Edda.
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MistyIL More than 1 year ago
Only buy this if you are well acquainted with Norse Mythology. The author explains many things about Norse mythology from the point of view that you have read and are thoroughly familiar with the subject. He does not actually tell any of the stories, which is the type of book I was looking for. It is very hard to follow this book if you haven't read the actual stories. There is a dictionary of terms with suggestions of further reading but many of the suggestions are in a foreign language. I quit reading this at page 72. If I am able to find a book of translations of the actual stories, this book might come in handy as a reference guide to look up a specific term. Otherwise it is not too helpful or interesting.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Does it explain the mytholigical Loki?