Synopses & Reviews
Myths are the dreams of mankind, at once utterly strange and hauntingly familiar. They tell of beginnings and ends, creation and destruction, life and death... This beautifully illustrated book gathers together many of the most popular myths from all over the world, including a selection of the great classical tales of Greece and Rome and myths from Norse, Celtic, Egyptian, Native American, Aborginal, African, and Asian traditions. They are retold for readers of all ages in a vivid, accessible style by Neil Philip, an authority on mythology and folklore. The illustrations by Nilesh Mistry link the main episodes of each myth, involving readers in the action and atmosphere. This exciting new approach also provides intriguing glimpses into the cultures from which these myths have sprung. Background information, accompanied by color photographs, explores the tales' historical, cultural, and geographical context. The stories are grouped together thematically -- allowing readers to appreciate not only the difference, but also the uncanny similarities between many of the world's cultures. The Illustrated Book of Myths brings together and illuminates timeless, universal stories, many of which form part of our literary heritage. Its special qualities make this collection both an important reference book for the whole family and a lasting source of inspiration and delight.
"Uses classical cultural categories -- creation, destruction, fertility. and the gods' relationships with humans and animals -- to draw connections between the diverse traditions of five continents. A rich, handsome resource". -- Booklist
Myths are grouped by theme under such headings as Creation, Fertility and Cultivation, Gods and Men, and the Afterlife, allowing readers to compare similar stories from different parts of the world and to gain insight into other cultures. Background information about historical and cultural events includes photos of places and objects mentioned in each story.
About the Author
Neil Philip studied English at Oxford University before getting his Ph.D. in myth and folklore in children's books at Bedford College, London University. He has written a number of titles in the field of myth and folklore including for adults, The Cinderella Story, The Penguin English Folktales, and The Penguin Scottish Folktales, and, for children, the Tale of Sir Gawain, Fairy Tales of Eastern Europe, The Complete Fairy Tales of Charles Perrault, and The Arabian Nights. Other publications include A Fine Anger, Between Earth and Sky, Victorian Village Life, and A New Treasury of Poetry. Nilesh Mistry was born in Bombay in 1966 and came to London in 1975. He completed his higher diploma in illustration at Harrow School of Art in 1988 and postgraduate studies at the Central St. Martin's Schoold of Art in 1990.