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In a work that has become a classic reference book for both the serious scholar and the casual inquirer, Graves retells the adventures of the important gods and heroes worshipped by the ancient Greeks. Each entry provides a full commentary which examines problems of interpretation in both historical and anthropological terms, and in light of contemporary research.


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In a work that has become a classic reference book for both the serious scholar and the casual inquirer, Graves retells the adventures of the important gods and heroes worshipped by the ancient Greeks. Each entry provides a full commentary which examines problems of interpretation in both historical and anthropological terms, and in light of contemporary research.

30 review for The Greek Myths: 1

  1. 5 out of 5

    Inkspill

    This book is first of the two volumes and is more than a telling of Greek Myths. This volume has an intro, 104 myths and a map. It starts with the beginnings / creation and ends with the death of Theseus. Thinking this would be nothing more than another telling of Greek Mythology it turned out to be a surprising and perfect read. Graves tells each myth in as a prose with all its versions. It’s the kind of read which would be easy to get lost in but in how Graves assigns a new letter for each vers This book is first of the two volumes and is more than a telling of Greek Myths. This volume has an intro, 104 myths and a map. It starts with the beginnings / creation and ends with the death of Theseus. Thinking this would be nothing more than another telling of Greek Mythology it turned out to be a surprising and perfect read. Graves tells each myth in as a prose with all its versions. It’s the kind of read which would be easy to get lost in but in how Graves assigns a new letter for each version helped me to keep track of each version. I was surprised by this. I was also thrilled how each story was followed by commentary, here each point is assigned a new number instead of a letter. As I kept reading, I realised this formatting was no accident. These numbers and letters (for each story version) were enabling easy referencing to create a network of connections between the stories. Reading Greek mythology for me has always been a daunting task but this book presents the stories like a roadmap, for the first time I began to see each myth in relation to others, I could now see it as part of a much bigger story. But the biggest eye opener for me in reading this book was how the connections spilled outside Greek Mythology, making links to other world myths. Where it was beginning to dawn on me how myths also have a functional value (pointing to a historical / cultural events) and goes beyond a fictional tale of heroes and gods. review tightened and tidied in July 2019

  2. 5 out of 5

    Darwin8u

    Read with the kids. My kids now think Greeks are all randy drinkers prone to murder (in all its forms) and incest, and the Gods are worse. Now, onto The Greek Myths II. I'll add a more detailed review once we finish the second part. __________________ - Robert Farwell / Edward Jones library / Mesa, AZ 2014 Read with the kids. My kids now think Greeks are all randy drinkers prone to murder (in all its forms) and incest, and the Gods are worse. Now, onto The Greek Myths II. I'll add a more detailed review once we finish the second part. __________________ - Robert Farwell / Edward Jones library / Mesa, AZ 2014

  3. 5 out of 5

    Arun Divakar

    A myth is like a sponge for it soaks up centuries worth of material into it. The kernel of the story would be transformed into only a faint resemblance of its original as the years pass it by. If we were to imagine a character like Heracles to come alive today, he might listen to his own story in incredulity and say but that was not how it happened ! The factors of social, economic, environmental and demographic changes seep into the tales and make them more suited as moral fables with each su A myth is like a sponge for it soaks up centuries worth of material into it. The kernel of the story would be transformed into only a faint resemblance of its original as the years pass it by. If we were to imagine a character like Heracles to come alive today, he might listen to his own story in incredulity and say but that was not how it happened ! The factors of social, economic, environmental and demographic changes seep into the tales and make them more suited as moral fables with each succeeding societies and their norms. What Robert Graves has done here is to gather (in two volumes), a sweeping recollection of the myths of the Greeks. The collection is brilliant in its scope and breadth and a magisterial one. The stories follow a logical pattern starting right from the creation myths and proceeding to the stories of the Titans. The Titans are eventually cast into Tartarus and the Olympians led by Zeus rise to take their place. The meat of the book is made up of the exploits of Zeus and his Olympians. We are then treated to the story of Prometheus and how fire came to the realm of the mortals, of Pandora and her opening the jar ( not a box, a jar !) and letting loose the evils into the world. The first of heroes in the form of Perseus then enters the fray and slays Meudsa and he is followed by Bellerophon who rides the Pegasus to slay the Chimera. Through the stories of a multitude of smaller yet well known characters ( Midas, Sisyphus and others) we finally reach Theseus and the first part of the collection ends with the life and times of Theseus. Following a short skeletal overview of each story, Graves gives a detailed break down of the symbolism behind the tales and his views on what the tales actually stand for. I could not but marvel at the amount of research and reading that Graves would have done for coming up with these inferences. This would undoubtedly be one reason why these books figure in the list of the best mythological references of all times. Let's imagine the myths to be a beehive dripping with sweet and intoxicating nectar. Graves would pick this hive up and show it to us and we the readers would stare slack jawed and salivating at the honey that oozes down his hands. Graves then proceeds to take a good, clean jar and squeeze every bit of honey into it and keeps the husk aside. Once this is done, he takes and locks up the honey and gives us the husk for consumption. Like this analogy and in terms of this book, Graves is a master researcher but a horrible storyteller. His stories lack a heart and a soul and are treated only as dull and dreary research subjects. I love a good story when told in the right fashion but here the soul of the stories are missing. Greek myths are fantastic material for stories : violence, jealousy, greed, sex and high octane action abound in them but Graves discards them all for academic interest. I read a review on the site where a reader opined that his young son now thinks that all Greeks are drunkards who pick fights for the smallest of reasons after reading this book. He has a point there for in these stories, the Gods are almost all of them drunk most of the time, fornicate with anything that moves and start bloody wars for the smallest of reasons. In the hands of a better story teller, this could have taken a fairy tale sort of hue but Graves is determined to hold his interest only to the academic sphere of things and thereby reducing the stories to exploits of characters who behave like thugs. Then again are Graves's theories of how a matriarchical society was later subjugated by a patriarchical one and thereby the cult of the goddess was overrun by a plethora of male gods. Almost 85% of the summations that Graves produces carry this result that the cult of the goddess was behind the origination of the myths. Most of these theories were later proved wrong by researchers. So it would also benefit any future reader to do some background reading prior to arriving at conclusions about these tales. Another part is that most of the assertions offered by Graves is against many a localized tribe or group which is next to unknown for a person who in unschooled about the terrain of Greece. This tended to throw my interest off big time. You need a map of Greece from the earlier times handy when you are reading this book. If you are looking for an introduction into Greek myths, start with something lighter. If however, you are interested in a deep dive into how these myths came to fore then this is the book for you. The content and material is worth four stars but the rating system is more a selfish one and I can only rate this against my interest level which is a solid three stars.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Sharon Barrow Wilfong

    Robert Graves is quite thorough in writing about the myths and at the end of each story, he provides foot notes that can be as long as the story itself. Some of the footnotes are speculative. "This god replaced an earlier pagan god etc.". It is difficult to know these things or the origins of any of these stories. But Graves gives his educated guesses and they are worth pondering. In Graves' version the myths are not child friendly and a lot more graphic than I remember Edith Hamilton's version. I Robert Graves is quite thorough in writing about the myths and at the end of each story, he provides foot notes that can be as long as the story itself. Some of the footnotes are speculative. "This god replaced an earlier pagan god etc.". It is difficult to know these things or the origins of any of these stories. But Graves gives his educated guesses and they are worth pondering. In Graves' version the myths are not child friendly and a lot more graphic than I remember Edith Hamilton's version. I have not read Hamilton's version in many years, so I suppose I could be wrong. She also includes stories that Graves leaves out. Graves seems to lean heavily on saga, which I appreciated since I recently read the Iliad and the Odyssey. He also fills in the gaps those two poems leave, letting us know how the Trojan War began and what happened to some of the key players such as Achilles, who is alive in the Iliad, but already dead in the Odyssey. I do not know if Robert Graves has a certain predilection towards the salacious (his books, I, Claudius and Claudius the God were pretty lewd) or if he is simply preserving a faithful translation of the stories. He has been criticized for relying too heavily on Suetonius' histories, who is also known for creating scandals that are not as historically reliable as they should be. Simply put, The Greek Myths Volume One and Two , are filled with violence and perversion. Every single story contains murder and rape. No Greek hero is exempt from practicing treachery, adultery, and, in one instance, necrophilia. Leaving children out for exposure was common. Many of the heroes were spared from an early death by compassionate shepherds, or even female animals who nursed them. Women are treated savagely by men, and especially Zeus who ravaged the countryside without mercy. These women were not only the victims of this heinous crime but they also got to be punished for it by the ever jealous Hera. The female goddesses were not much better than the gods. Both male and female gods' sense of justice was based largely on caprice and selfish ambition. There seemed to be very little reason other than a cruel nature behind any of their actions. Ancient Greece is known for being the intellectual epicenter of the B.C. epoch, but I have to conclude that these myths, as Robert Graves tells them, were formed during a much earlier time when the Greeks were no more than tribal barbarians steeped in pagan practice that by today's standards of morality seem demonic.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Ashleigh

    I've always been a big 'fan' (for want of another word) of ancient mythology and I've been looking for the 'perfect' book that just has them all together for quite a while. One that has it all neatly wrapped in a bow and I genuinely cannot believe it took me so long to find this! I enjoyed the collection of these myths, some were familiar, some were really unfamiliar - which was brilliant, because though I really love the familiar myths, it was really good to read those that were unfamiliar and n I've always been a big 'fan' (for want of another word) of ancient mythology and I've been looking for the 'perfect' book that just has them all together for quite a while. One that has it all neatly wrapped in a bow and I genuinely cannot believe it took me so long to find this! I enjoyed the collection of these myths, some were familiar, some were really unfamiliar - which was brilliant, because though I really love the familiar myths, it was really good to read those that were unfamiliar and new to me. I also enjoyed Graves' interpretation and comments after each myth, though I didn't always agree with his take on several of them. Some of the interpretations of the imagery of these stories seemed strongly influenced by his own thought and opinion rather than based on historical sources. However, though a really good anthology, I felt that the stories themselves were quite lacking. Really it was 'bam, bam, bam' with all the information and I was hoping for a little more glorification (more like children's mythology collections I suppose!). This particularly felt really heavy in places. I think this book is worth having more as a reference work, thanks to what seems like a thorough index and the very frequent occurence of references to these stories in other writings, rather than as something to read straight through. I will read Volume 2 one day, which means I liked this quite well - I just found it really, really tough in places!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Justine

    I took a very long time to read this book, because I read it bit by bit, when I wanted to. As I borrowed it from the library, I was "obliged" to finish it soon, and so hurried for the last part of it. I didn't know that The Greek Myths was, not only a book about the myths AND their variations, but also a commentary by Robert Graves, explaining from where they come from, what they are really, historically, about. It was really interesting, but quite confusing - mostly because of the variations I took a very long time to read this book, because I read it bit by bit, when I wanted to. As I borrowed it from the library, I was "obliged" to finish it soon, and so hurried for the last part of it. I didn't know that The Greek Myths was, not only a book about the myths AND their variations, but also a commentary by Robert Graves, explaining from where they come from, what they are really, historically, about. It was really interesting, but quite confusing - mostly because of the variations and the names -, and quite annoying because the author clearly explains how Greek society was misogynous. The number of rapes, ravishments and replacements of women cults by men cults ... I have probably not understood it all, and I won't read the second volume soon, but I think about getting the whole version, and reading it latter, more slowly!

  7. 4 out of 5

    Michael O'Brien

    Given the extent to which Greek mythology has influenced Western culture, art, and literature, I had what in hindsight were excessively high expectations of it, most of my knowledge having previously been from reading on it as a lad in the condensed versions found in encyclopedias. For a book with such salacious details and barbarities, you would think it would be at the very least, engaging, but, no, I found this to be a real plod to get through. It tends to relate each tale in a meandering way Given the extent to which Greek mythology has influenced Western culture, art, and literature, I had what in hindsight were excessively high expectations of it, most of my knowledge having previously been from reading on it as a lad in the condensed versions found in encyclopedias. For a book with such salacious details and barbarities, you would think it would be at the very least, engaging, but, no, I found this to be a real plod to get through. It tends to relate each tale in a meandering way, then Graves explains the background and naturalistic explanations behind the myth. It's ok, but it's not great. In addition, it's hard to tell how much of Graves' explanations are based upon facts and research or merely upon his own conjectures. As far as the Greek heroes and heroines, frankly, I was disappointed ----- most seemed lustful, cruel, capricious, petulant, and arbitrary --- their primary claim to greatness being great feats of strength or great beauty more than any really great character or integrity. The Greek gods, who guide and influence most of the events in these myths, not only are no better than their human counterparts ---- they are worse. Zeus, for example, far from coming across as the Supreme Being and Leader of the Gods, is more a lustful old goat, using his powers to sate his own incontinent desires and to unjustly and cruelly inflict his power upon his lessors based more upon whims and caprice instead of any standard of morality or ultimate justice. The same applies to the lesser Greek gods as well. Given the degenerate nature of Greek mythology and ancient Greek pagan religion, I finish this first volume convinced that Greco-Roman culture succeeded for as long as it did more in spite of these than because of them, and can see how the rise of a new faith, Christianity, with its belief in a holy, perfect God eventually supplanted it altogether. In my own mind, after reading this book, it did make me appreciate even the perfection, justice, mercy, and grace of the the one true God --- so much in contrast to the weakness, foulness, cruelty, and hypocrisy of the Greek pagan pantheon.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Michael Huang

    To quote the introduction "Greek myths survive much better than other ancient world-system because they validated daily life of people who created and maintained them, and irradiated their imaginations." In this book, Graves records these stories and added a lot of notes, sometimes anecdotes and other people's half-digested ideas (again according to the introduction). Nothing is certain by the way as discrepancies in time and name are the rule in mythology. Many are created as a history device: Z To quote the introduction "Greek myths survive much better than other ancient world-system because they validated daily life of people who created and maintained them, and irradiated their imaginations." In this book, Graves records these stories and added a lot of notes, sometimes anecdotes and other people's half-digested ideas (again according to the introduction). Nothing is certain by the way as discrepancies in time and name are the rule in mythology. Many are created as a history device: Zeus raping this goddess or that refers to some invasion. Mythical genealogies are invented when sovereignty of states or hereditary privileges came into dispute. The Zeus-Ganymede myth is popular as it afforded religious justification for a grown man's love of a boy. Most of the stories themselves are pretty bland. But the notes are occasionally interesting. Here are three examples: Smiths Cyclopes seem to have been a guild of Early Helladic bronze-smith. The name means "ring-eyed", and they are likely to have been tattooed with concentric rings on the forehead, in honor of the sun, the source of their furnace fire. In primitive times, smiths are often purposely lamed to prevent them from running off and joining the enemies, hence the lame Hephaestus. Patriarchy We began with matriarchy. Plato identified Athene with Libyan goddess Neith, who belonged to an epoch when fatherhood was not recognized. There is a time where matriarchy is being supplanted by patriarchy. This happens perhaps gradually, first with kings deputizing for the priestesses. Sometimes they wear artificial breasts, hence the myth of Hermaphrodite. The king's reign is often limited in time (sometimes 13 months, sometimes a Great Year of 100 lunations). Offering boy victims becomes one mechanism for kings to prolong their reign. Hence stories of Cronus eating his own sons to avoid dethronement. Other times, the sacred king will pretend death for one day while a boy interrex will take his place for one day. This circumvents the law that forbade him for extended rule. This is thought to be the origin of the heroes-harrowing-in-Hell mythologies. The brotherhood of Hades, Poseidon, and Zeus forcibly marrying the pre-Hellenic Triple-goddess Hera, Demeter, Persephone/Kore refers to the male usurpation of female agriculture mysteries in primitive times. Later, Athenians abandoned the Cretan custom of taking their mother's names. Now patriarchy is firmly in place. Stories about names 1. Atlas is a personification of Mount Atlas, in north-wester Africa, whose peak seemed to hold up Heavens. For Homer, however, the columns on which he supported firmament stood far out in the ocean, which afterwards was named by Herodotus in Atlas's honor. 2. Prometheus's name means forethought in Greek. But that is perhaps from Sanskrit "Pramantha" which means the swastika, or fire-drill, which he supposedly invented. 3 Midas has been plausibly identified with a king called Mita. The Golden touch was invented to account for the riches of the dynasty and for the presence of gold in Pactolus river. 4. Narcissus's tale is perhaps invented to give the name of flower, from which the narcissus oil (a well known narcotic) is made. 5. Amazon is derived from "a" and "mazon" (without breasts), because they were believed to sear away one breast to shoot better. (ouch). 6. An Etruscan vase shows the a moribund king called Jason in the jaws of a sea-monster. Apparently this gives rise to the Jonah and Whale story later on.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Matt Reid

    The myths are told simply but with a thesis that was quite new to me despite dating to the 1950s, offering a very different take on the stories than I had ever encountered. I would love to track down the second volume.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

    The Folio edition is so beautiful, it was nice to read over a period of nine months. This is definitely not the book use for a quick Greek mythology lesson. Especially since it's considered highly inaccurate. The Folio edition is so beautiful, it was nice to read over a period of nine months. This is definitely not the book use for a quick Greek mythology lesson. Especially since it's considered highly inaccurate.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Jonathan

    update: The more I have thought about it the less I would recommend this book. Its a real shame that it is called "The Greek Myths", it would be more accurate to call it "Robert Graves reports the greek myths and then theorizes about their meanings". I really wouldn't even recommend this book as literature becuase it is a rather dense read and the re-telling of the myths is dry. Don't mean to hate on Graves, but I just think his treatment of the myths will lead to their being further misunderstood update: The more I have thought about it the less I would recommend this book. Its a real shame that it is called "The Greek Myths", it would be more accurate to call it "Robert Graves reports the greek myths and then theorizes about their meanings". I really wouldn't even recommend this book as literature becuase it is a rather dense read and the re-telling of the myths is dry. Don't mean to hate on Graves, but I just think his treatment of the myths will lead to their being further misunderstood. --------old review This book is really weird. I can appreciate the authors mastery of his subject, but that perceived mastery leads to a mixed result. To be fair he makes note that his analysis is derived from long study, observation and careful inference, and that because many of these myths come from pre-history the interpretations of them are very rarely based in anything other than structural theory. I guess I would recommend this book from a literary standpoint, but to those who are not already well versed in mythology and greek history it presents a very confusing and at times misleading read. My advice would be to read the book, but take his analysts of the myths as being the gestational material for his White Goddess theories. I have a feeling that this book will appeal to those who have rather lax standards of scholarship as long as the author is sympathetic to their views...I.e certain feminists who want some matriarchal mythos to hang their hats on.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Simon

    A brilliant compendium of Greek mythology, drawn from all the major Classical sources and rewritten with flair by Graves. His erudite commentaries on each myth are illuminating, even if his interpretations are sometimes a bit forced. Looking forward to vol. 2.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Lyn Elliott

    Read these first in my teens and still dp back into them from time to time. Masterly.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Rabeaa Hayar

    These are the greatest stories ever told- the labours of Hercules, the voyage of the Argonauts, Theseus and the minotaur, Midas and his golden touch, the Trojan War and Odysseus's journey home -brought together into one epic and unforgettable story. Ideal for the first time reader, it can be read as a single page-turning narrative, while full commentaries, as well as a comprehensive index of names, make it equally valuable for anyone seeking an authoritative and detailed account of the spectacula These are the greatest stories ever told- the labours of Hercules, the voyage of the Argonauts, Theseus and the minotaur, Midas and his golden touch, the Trojan War and Odysseus's journey home -brought together into one epic and unforgettable story. Ideal for the first time reader, it can be read as a single page-turning narrative, while full commentaries, as well as a comprehensive index of names, make it equally valuable for anyone seeking an authoritative and detailed account of the spectacular stories that make up the bedrock of Western literature. Graves can be incredibly valuable for artists and creators, because his commentary is fruitful ground for the imagination, and useful for generating insights about modern literature. His commentary may be taken as a form of non-canonical mythology from a very fine and serious literary artist.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Aarón

    The ancient cultures and todays culture have more similarities than you could ever imagine. it's kind of shocking. it's a very informative and amusing book. I hope to read the second volume soon. PS. the footnotes were a bit excessive to me but i guess if someone is trying to actually do a profound research they could be very helpful. The ancient cultures and todays culture have more similarities than you could ever imagine. it's kind of shocking. it's a very informative and amusing book. I hope to read the second volume soon. PS. the footnotes were a bit excessive to me but i guess if someone is trying to actually do a profound research they could be very helpful.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Perry Whitford

    When Robert Graves sat down to write his deconstruction of the Greek myths in the 1950s, he was a man on a mission. He had a single great theme, first revealed in his book The White Goddess, which he was determined to highlight again and again out of every facet of the vast source material. According to Graves, virtually every story in Greek myth can trace its origins to when the pre-Hellenic system of matriarchy was usurped by a subverting patriarchy, which re-wrote all the accepted legends in o When Robert Graves sat down to write his deconstruction of the Greek myths in the 1950s, he was a man on a mission. He had a single great theme, first revealed in his book The White Goddess, which he was determined to highlight again and again out of every facet of the vast source material. According to Graves, virtually every story in Greek myth can trace its origins to when the pre-Hellenic system of matriarchy was usurped by a subverting patriarchy, which re-wrote all the accepted legends in order to suit the victory of the new order. The king and his tanist (second) used to be sacrificed to the Mother Goddess, then they decided to save themselves by taking over control of ritual and religion. The Mother Goddess is replaced by the king, the Triple-goddess by a host of Olympians, priestesses by priests etc. Even the term 'Hellenes' derives from Helen (of Troy), once the Moon-goddess; Athene predates her father, Zeus; Hecate is the true ruler of Tartarus, not Hades; the Olympics started as a foot-race for women competing to be moon-priestesses, and on and on. Can this all be true? I have no idea, though I know that it has been rejected out of hand by many academics. It is fascinating though, particularly the idea that the Hellenes and the following Achaeans and Dorians needed new myths to explain war, as this was a condition unknown when women ruled the community. Graves was a poet, so I was looking forward to his lyrical spin on the old and often told stories. I accept that by necessity his explanations are primarily scholastic, but his retellings of the myths are disappointingly far from poetical, or at least only glibly poetic at best. Therefore, though this first part of a comprehensive two part work - which focuses on the individual creation myths, gods, demi-gods and heroes - is an invaluable reference book, I wasn't stirred or entertained by it as much as its reputation suggested. An extraordinary undertaking, but not as enjoyable to read as anticipated.

  17. 4 out of 5

    GoldGato

    This work remains the standard for most modern explanations of ancient myths, with sections devoted to each mythical legend followed by Graves' explanations. I find he takes the approach of a poet, rather than an academic, which makes it easier to digest. He does seem to take certain stands, such as calling out the Greeks for preferring thunder and lightning (Zeus) over the sun (Helius). How dare they. Graves is very thorough with notes upon notes, to the point that I lost track of Plato's Atlan This work remains the standard for most modern explanations of ancient myths, with sections devoted to each mythical legend followed by Graves' explanations. I find he takes the approach of a poet, rather than an academic, which makes it easier to digest. He does seem to take certain stands, such as calling out the Greeks for preferring thunder and lightning (Zeus) over the sun (Helius). How dare they. Graves is very thorough with notes upon notes, to the point that I lost track of Plato's Atlantis. As a reader, I use this whenever I have a yearn to jog through the multitude of Olympians who cause me confusion. Book Season = Year Round (the gods never sleep)

  18. 4 out of 5

    Tom Kenis

    A terribly academic, quasi-unreadable slog. Yet, slog I did... The basic premise of the book is that of a primeval matriarchic, cruel and child-sacrificing, civilisation said to have inhabited the pre-Hellenic Greek world, gradually replaced by invading patriarchic tribes. "Blessed be the fruit." However appealing the idea, Graves goes to fabulous lengths to reinterpret every footnote of every myth in what one is tempted to call a Herculean, nay, Procrustean effort. Interesting, but a ripping re A terribly academic, quasi-unreadable slog. Yet, slog I did... The basic premise of the book is that of a primeval matriarchic, cruel and child-sacrificing, civilisation said to have inhabited the pre-Hellenic Greek world, gradually replaced by invading patriarchic tribes. "Blessed be the fruit." However appealing the idea, Graves goes to fabulous lengths to reinterpret every footnote of every myth in what one is tempted to call a Herculean, nay, Procrustean effort. Interesting, but a ripping read it is not. As a side note, will far-future historians stand in similar awe of, indulge in never-ending exegesis of say, the Marvel universe?

  19. 5 out of 5

    Rachel

    I loved a lot of the moments in this, especially toward the beginning. It was often hard, though, to wade through a lot of boring to get to the good parts. My favorite toward the end was "...which is why Theseus's Athenian descendents are so absurdly small-buttocked." I think this book is worth having more as a reference work, thanks to what seems like a thorough index and the very frequent occurence of references to these stories in other writings, rather than as something to read straight thro I loved a lot of the moments in this, especially toward the beginning. It was often hard, though, to wade through a lot of boring to get to the good parts. My favorite toward the end was "...which is why Theseus's Athenian descendents are so absurdly small-buttocked." I think this book is worth having more as a reference work, thanks to what seems like a thorough index and the very frequent occurence of references to these stories in other writings, rather than as something to read straight through. I will read vol. 2 one day, which means I liked this quite well.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Aaron Meyer

    The majority of myths presented here seem to focus on heroes rather than the gods themselves. I do enjoy the variety of sources used to bring the differing stories together and particularly the listing of those sources after each section. Robert Graves "learned" opinions after each section often left me amused. He was definitely a die-hard goddess cult person and every single thing would be tied back to this idea. His interpretation of words left much to be desired, for it seemed very careless. The majority of myths presented here seem to focus on heroes rather than the gods themselves. I do enjoy the variety of sources used to bring the differing stories together and particularly the listing of those sources after each section. Robert Graves "learned" opinions after each section often left me amused. He was definitely a die-hard goddess cult person and every single thing would be tied back to this idea. His interpretation of words left much to be desired, for it seemed very careless. Beyond that the book is useful for getting reacquainted with the myths.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Rima

    Grateful the author didn't write a tome 3. This series was mandatory in high-school whilst preparing for the French baccalaureate. Didn't enjoy reading it at all, and has nothing to do with the translation, because I had checked the original version as well and same result: very dry, pedantic and tedious and in some instances misleading- more to be used for cross-references than actual reading material. Lacks maps and pictures - crucial elements when studying Greek mythology, or any mythology as Grateful the author didn't write a tome 3. This series was mandatory in high-school whilst preparing for the French baccalaureate. Didn't enjoy reading it at all, and has nothing to do with the translation, because I had checked the original version as well and same result: very dry, pedantic and tedious and in some instances misleading- more to be used for cross-references than actual reading material. Lacks maps and pictures - crucial elements when studying Greek mythology, or any mythology as a teenager. The author is definitely not a story teller.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Jon Ungerland

    but seriously, this book is good if you're looking for a strong supliment to someone like Jung, who assumes that his readers have a good grasp of greek mythology and its implications on archetypal theory. but seriously, this book is good if you're looking for a strong supliment to someone like Jung, who assumes that his readers have a good grasp of greek mythology and its implications on archetypal theory.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Ann Klefstad

    No better source to ensnare you in the material, and he's thorough. No better source to ensnare you in the material, and he's thorough.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Dusty Hope

    not bad, hectic in the head, a little all over the place, fascinating but frustrating.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Guy

    One of my many begun books, mostly read, to be used primarily as reference. Quite a good book.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Justin Howe

    I'm not sure how much of Graves's scholarship is accurate, but he crafts a wild ride. I'm not sure how much of Graves's scholarship is accurate, but he crafts a wild ride.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Shanna

    Full review in The Greek Myths: 2 (not yet finished) Full review in The Greek Myths: 2 (not yet finished)

  28. 5 out of 5

    Tim Cook

    You know, there's an awful lot of rape in the Greek myths (or 'being ravished' as they called it back then). Also, a lot of people being turned into things, or getting killed by serpents. I've already started on the sequel. You know, there's an awful lot of rape in the Greek myths (or 'being ravished' as they called it back then). Also, a lot of people being turned into things, or getting killed by serpents. I've already started on the sequel.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Nagisa Furukawa

    It was not for me. Started with the highest of hopes, but was gravely disappointed (or sth).

  30. 4 out of 5

    Frank Granlund

    Classic Greek mythology

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