COMPLETE BULFINCH'S MYTHOLOGY
by Thomas Bulfinch
"Mythology is the handmaind of literature. Without a knowledge of mythology much of the elegant literature of our own language cannot be understood and appreciated. . . . Our book is an attempt to solve this problem, by telling the stories of mythology in such a manner as to make them a source of amusement." : Thomas Bulfinch
It is THE classic introduction to ancient and medieval myths, and it was the first book that unlocked for the masses the allusions to mythology contained in every-day references and literature. While it is considered a cornerstone of a classical education, Bulfinch's Mythology is also a great read. The tales, and the values and ideals they illustrate, are at the very heart of Western literature and culture, and form the basis for modern Fantasy Literature.
For more than 150 years Bulfinch's Mythology has been the text by which the great tales of the gods and goddesses, Greek and Roman antiquity Scandinavian, Celtic, and Oriental fables and myths and the age of chivalry have been known.
The stories are divided into three volumes: The Age of Fable or Stories of Gods and Heroes 1855 The Age of Chivalry 1858, which contains King Arthur and His Knights, The Mabinogeon, and The Knights of English History and Legends of Charlemagne or Romance of the Middle Ages 1863.
For the Greek myths, Bulfinch drew on Ovid and Virgil, and for the sagas of the north, from Mallet's Northern Antiquities. He provides lively versions of the myths of Zeus and Hera, Venus and Adonis, Daphne and Apollo, and their cohorts on Mount Olympus the love story of Pygmalion and Galatea the legends of the Trojan War and the epic wanderings of Ulysses and Aeneas the joys of Valhalla and the furies of Thor and the tales of Beowulf, Robin Hood and King Arthur.
Thomas Bulfinch, thoroughly researched the myths and legends and copiously cross-referenced them with literature and art. As such, the myths not only eminently readable but also are an indispensable guide to the cultural values of the nineteenth century however, it is the vigor of the stories themselves that returns generation after generation to Bulfinch.