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Celtic Heritage

4.04 of 5 stars 4.04  ·  rating details  ·  298 ratings  ·  12 reviews
In this widely acclaimed study, Alwyn and Brinley Ress reinterpret Celtic tradition in the light of advances made in the comparative study of religion, mythology and anthropology. Part One considers the distinguishing features of the various Cycle of tales and the personages who figure most prominently in them. Part Two reveals the cosmological framework within which the a...more
Paperback, 428 pages
Published May 1st 1989 by Thames & Hudson (first published 1961)
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This is a good book but not a light book. Alwyn and Brinley Rees analyse and classify the ancient myths and tales of Ireland and Wales. They compare the myths to those of India and sometimes to Aztec myths. I like the fact that they speak of the Druids in their relationship to myth and story, but they do not pretend that they know their religion, as some writers do.
We read this book as part of an Ancient Celtic Studies Discussion Group that I run in real life. It took a long time to get through, but it was well worth the effort. The book is chalk-full of information about the Iron-Age Celts, what little there is. Rees and Rees did a great job of analyzing the information they did have and making conclusions based upon the scholarship of the time.
Oct 11, 2008 Heather rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Ceredwyn, Schaunette, Karen A.
Not only do you get most of the important mythological cycles of the Celts, you get to have them put into context with Celtic society. As a starter book, for someone with lots of Celtic knowledge looking for a way to combine it, or for someone who wants to read just one, all round, great book on Celtic myth and life, it's perfect.
Way too deep for me at times, it still offered some interesting thoughts on the Celtic mythology and how it relates to other world mythologies. The connections made between Celtic and Indian mythology I found particularly intriguing. Definitely more a book for the scholar than the moderately interested reader.
Smallest Tiger
Pretty good, and very readable! It draws heavily on parallels with Hindu mythology, and I would like to see some discussion of the arguments for and against that as well.
Jul 21, 2009 Maya rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Anyone wanting to get an introduction to Welsh and Irish Mythology
Recommended to Maya by: CR List
Randy Pitcher
This was our first book of the Celtic Book Discussion group I belong to. It took us almost a year to get through it. It is chock full of information and I learned a great deal from the book. However, it was/is a very dry read.
Flip Wibbly
May 01, 2008 Flip Wibbly rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Hardcore lovers of Celtic Mythology/Folklore
Extremely well written and packed with information, but also very dense. Definitely NOT light reading. Still if you're into this sort of thing (and I am) it's a great read.
Rather more like a textbook ,lots of research matrial for the student of celtic lore.I expected just stories and the book is a bit over my head.
Aug 24, 2014 Steven added it
Anyone interested in our Celtic Heritage should read this as it's both scolarly and easy to read. A very full account. Highly recommended
Mark Woodland
Fine if you want a light, general glossing-over of the topic. Otherwise, lacks depth as well as a good bibliography.
Awesome book with folklore, prayers, and history.
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