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4.01  ·  Rating details ·  47,131 ratings  ·  2,560 reviews

The world-renowned classic that has enthralled and delighted millions of readers with its timeless tales of gods and heroes.

Edith Hamilton's Mythology succeeds like no other book in bringing to life for the modern reader the Greek, Roman, and Norse myths that are the keystone of Western culture--the stories of gods and heroes that have inspired human creativity from antiqu

Paperback, Back Bay Books Edition, 497 pages
Published September 14th 1998 by Little, Brown and Company (first published 1942)
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Lori I just wanted to add to Emily's (excellent) answer. It's *like* the Bible in that is tells the stories of the Greco-Roman gods, much like the Christia…moreI just wanted to add to Emily's (excellent) answer. It's *like* the Bible in that is tells the stories of the Greco-Roman gods, much like the Christian Bible contains stories in both the Old and New Testaments. However, like Emily said, it opens with a break down of the gods, grouped together with similar gods. It gives their Greek and Roman names and elucidates the minor differences between the Greek stories and the Roman stories of each god.

The book then moves into stories/myths involving the gods. The stories are edited with comments to include (sometimes) where the story came from (e.g. Homer's earlier writings, etc.) and slight variances in the story that are the result of translations or just disagreements in the retellings throughout history.

I actually read the Percy Jackson series and realized just how little I knew of Greek mythology. This book is an excellent read if you want to brush up, or (like me) learn about it from the ground-up.

In short, once you read through the descriptions of the gods, it becomes more story-like (divided into chapters, etc.). Highly recommend. (less)
Ethan I would say yes! Some of these stories are dark and a bit mature but after a quick read through you should be able to pick out a plethora of myths to …moreI would say yes! Some of these stories are dark and a bit mature but after a quick read through you should be able to pick out a plethora of myths to share with your children. Some of them would make excellent bedtime stories.

I firmly believe that these myths are still important and relevant and many of them deal with the human condition. The adventures may present some tough lessons on morality and right and wrong but they are such wonderfully presented here that I believe that with some careful guidance someone 11 years old or even a bit younger could enjoy some of these. Odysseus defeating the cyclops Polyphemus for example is one that I was exposed to at a very young age and it's still one of my favorite stories. An 11-year-old boy particularly would find it entertaining (what young boy doesn't like a good somewhat violent tale about overcoming a seemingly insurmountable evil?)

I believe that myths are great for children and even better for adults. Still to this day these myths are recreated and played out. Disney is especially famous for this. And how can we not mention Star Wars? All the elements of classical mythology are present in those movies!

I encourage folks to share these stories with their kids!


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Average rating 4.01  · 
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 ·  47,131 ratings  ·  2,560 reviews

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Val ⚓️ Shameless Non-Snowflake ⚓️
4 Stars

Wow. So this took me almost a full year to get through.


And no, I'm not actually joking (shocking, I know). GR says I started this in August....of 2018.


But what can I say.

Aside from the fact that I am probably just too dumb and too uncultured to truly enjoy this thing to it's full capacity...I'm also not a pretentious asshole who is going to pretend I lurved it to pieces just to look smart. (And no, I am not suggesting anyone who says they love this is a liar. One of my BBF GR buds An
Helena Paris
This book is considered as a classic for a reason... And I just wanted to say that this edition is GORGEOUS. Please, BUY IT! I promise that it'll look as AMAZING on your shelves as it does on mine! :D





P.S. These beautiful photos aren't mine! ;)
Oct 31, 2008 rated it liked it
This is the second in a series of six reviews focusing on books about Greek mythology. The books included in this comparative evaluation are:

Bulfinch's Mythology (Modern Library Paperback Edition, 2004)
Mythology by Edith Hamilton (originally published in 1942; Back Bay Books edition of 1998)
The Greek Myths by Robert Graves (Penguin Books combined edition, 1992)
Gods and Heroes of Ancient Greece by Gustav Schwab (Pantheon Books, copyright 1946)
Don't Know Much About Mythology by Kenneth C. Davis (H
Ahmad Sharabiani
Mythology: Timeless Tales of Gods and Heroes, Edith Hamilton

Edith Hamilton's Mythology succeeds like no other book in bringing to life for the modern reader the Greek, Roman, and Norse myths that are the keystone of Western culture--the stories of gods and heroes that have inspired human creativity from antiquity to the present.

We meet the Greek gods on Olympus and Norse gods in Valhalla. We follow the drama of the Trojan War and the wanderings of Odysseus.

We hear the tales of Jason and the Go
Jason Koivu
Feb 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
Edith Hamilton may have written Mythology: Timeless Tales of Gods and Heroes more than a half century ago and she may have been fairly ancient when she did so, but she still put out one seriously readable book!

Hamilton took from the best sources to cobble together slick summaries of all your old time myth favorites. Before giving each mythical story's highlights, she details the different writers who created a version of it and explains the qualities of the best ones. Sometimes she berates the l
K.D. Absolutely
Aug 23, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to K.D. by: Monique
Shelves: retelling, mythology
"This book makes me feel smarter," says my GR friend in her review of this book. I worked the same for me.

Greek, Roman and Norse mythologies are so old because they have been in existence thousands and thousands of years even before Christ was born. No wonder that many literary works have been based on them. Even the names of the planets and the stars. Even the names of my, mortal as they are, relatives and friends. I have a nephew by a cousin in Canada whose name is Hector but he does not write
Rachel Reads Ravenously
4 stars

Basically, this gif sums up most of Greek mythology:

Not even kidding a little bit.

Anyways, mythology is always something I was interested in and loved, it's in so much of our everyday life still in the stories we tell and our history. I know most of my real life friends read this in the 10th grade, but my class read The Odyssey only and I've always meant to get to this book but didn't until now.

I listened to the audio of this book during my work commutes, and I liked it because it was a
Aug 07, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Hm. I declared August "History Month" and read, amongst various others, Bulfinch's Mythology of which I was quite disappointed. In my research of his work and how it came to be I found a reference to this book by Edith Hamilton, who superseded Mr. Bulfinch in most classrooms. Thus I read this book in an attempt to find a better written encyclopedia. Unfortunately, I did not succeed.
To clarify: this book IS better written than the one by Mr. Bulfinch. One reason is that Edith Hamilton was a scho
Just Josie
Mar 12, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
🔸It’s hands down one of the prettiest books I own.🔸

What remarkable tales of Greek Mythology and even a little section on Norse Mythology.
Mythology is my guilty pleasure, and this was such a delight to read.
The illustrations were brilliant, the explanations about the gods and heroes were easy to follow. And I loved how it was structured. I didn’t get the “boring textbook” feel at all.
Stunning piece. 🔸

Read: 19/04/2021
1st rating: 5 stars
Cover: 4 stars
Will I recommend: Without a doubt.
This is one of those books you hear about and then buy in a used bookstore and it languishes on your bookshelves for years until you finally pick it up, and then you just end up thinking to yourself, why didn't I pick this up sooner? Only, it's also one of those books that really works better as a reference than as a book you sit down and read from cover to cover. I read this book over the course of most of February, in bits and pieces, and it worked well that way.

This book is a classic for a re
Mar 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Pindar in the early fifth century tells the tale about the feast Tantalus made the gods and protests that it is not true. The punishment of Tantalus is described often, first in the Odyssey, from which I have taken it. Amphion's story, and Niobe's, I have taken from Ovid, who alone tells them in full. For Pelops winning the chariot race I have preferred Apollodorus, of the first or second century A.D., who gives the fullest account that has come down. The story of Atreus' and Thyestes' crimes a ...more
Nov 04, 2012 marked it as to-read
Only made it to page 180, but someday I'll finish it. In the meantime, some paintings of a few myths I did read:

John William Waterhouse, Echo and Narcissus, in which Echo (who can only echo what other people say) fails to save Narcissus from drowning himself while admiring his own wonderful visage.

Francisco de Goya, Saturn Devouring His Son, in which the titan Saturn eats all his children so that they won't be the death of him.

Peter Paul Rubens, Leda and the Swan, in which a woman is raped by Z
Welwyn Wilton Katz
This book is very hard to classify. Doesn't the title make you think "World Mythology"? Well, if it did, you would be wrong. I bought this book, looking forward to (especially) a female viewpoint of comparative mythology from various different countries around the world. What I got was an extremely thorough set of retellings (with impeccably named sources) by Hamilton of virtually every classical (Greek and Roman) myth ever told), with the very strange inclusion of approximately 20 pages of Nors ...more
Sep 17, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Students
Shelves: classics
I believe, deep in my heart, that everyone who has attended high school in the past twenty to thirty years or so (in the United States, at least) owned a ratty, most likely used copy of this work at one time or another. This book has been on the required reading list of so many schools that nearly everyone has seen it, owned it, and opened it at least twice.

This is one only two such books I still have, 15 years out of high school: this and Strunk and White. This is a good book to have lying arou
Aug 25, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
I remember reading this over and over when I was in high school, just for my own pleasure. Then I got to college, and took an actual mythology class, and the first thing the professor said was, "I hope you all haven't been reading junk like Edith Hamilton." What?! Well, most of his problem was with those bite-sized little rundowns of the myths, which is what I liked about it. It's a nice survey of Greek mythology, an introduction, if you will. There are a few inaccuracies, and she barely mention ...more
Paige  Bookdragon

You can never forget your first love.
Melania 🍒

This book really helped me with one thing: learning that I don’t really care for mythology. So, understandable, this got really boring really fast.
Lucy Langford
Feb 25, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

This was great for Greek mythology- with family trees at the back of the book to aid understanding and it was great to see how these heroes and Gods all connect. The author also wrote where the these stories are found and the source material she used (eg through tragic plays, or part of poetry) which was great for me for further research!

I also enjoyed how the author included different versions of the tales and who originally wrote these down- for example, there are different versions of
Michael Finocchiaro
Edith Hamilton was probably how I discovered mythology myself. I have an old tattered paperback copy of this which helped guide me through the Odyssey and the Iliad. I haven't attempted Ovid or Hesiod, but this is where I would undoubtedly start whenever decide to do so. ...more
BAM Endlessly Booked
Audiobook #267
Classic reverie
I was happy to have the recommendation of Edith Hamilton's Mythology from my Goodreads friend, Beverly about a year ago, when I was looking for a book that would help me understand this subject better. There is a lot of information which I preferred to read a little at a time which took almost a year to finish. Do I remember all in this book? You got to be kidding, I remember the basics and it has already helped in my classic reads when these figures show up and if my memory fails, I can look he ...more
Oct 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: High schoolers
Wow! This book is FILLED TO THE BRIM with Mythology!! 5/5 stars from me!

This book has some violence, so I recommend this book for teenagers over 13.
Janus the Erudite Artist
This book, aside from fairy tales, has introduced me to the world beyond our reach. I first had this book because back in high school, we were required to read it. I never really understood back then why it seemed that I was one of the few who enjoyed reading this and majority of our class despised having to be given the assignment to read it. I always found it entertaining. Well, the first few stories were a bit tedious but it was a foundation that helped me understand the other tales so it was ...more
TS Chan
3.5 stars.
Carol Flores
Jun 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really don’t know where to begin with this review because the 75th anniversary illustrated edition is stunning and I am overwhelmed by its beauty.

I’ve always been interested in Greek mythology but I never had a whole book that would help me understand the relationships between Titans, Olympian Gods, Demi-gods and humans. But this one served its purpose. Not only we have the family trees that help us know who is related to who, but also how they get involved with the great heroes such as Achil
Jun 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: classics
A refresher in the Greek and Roman gods, in preparation for reading some classic literature later in the year.
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
I've been reading on this collection of myths for almost a month, and I really didn't want to come up for air. A one sentence summary: these stories are the best stories of all time. There are stories about every possible theme---death, work, struggle, sadness, love, hate, war, revenge, retribution. Because these stories are deeply embedded in our culture they reverberate through the modern stories we hear.

This is a must-read for everyone.

Cautionary note: Edith Hamilton isn't afraid to share he
Nov 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a classic about the classic myths that is absolutely fantastic. I highly recommend and regret not reading it way earlier.
Aug 20, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a book I've had sitting on my shelves for a long time, and one I've flipped through several times to look up references from other books, titles, movies. I was finally encouraged to read the entire thing from having read Jesmyn Ward's Salvage the Bones, in which the 14-year-old protagonist reads Mythology and makes comparisons to her own life, comparisons based mainly on the story of Jason and Medea. (One of my own personal favorites, as well, because Medea is a wickedly delicious charac ...more
Mardin Uzeri
Oct 08, 2016 rated it really liked it
Greek, Roman, and Norse mythologies have affected our modern cultures more than we might like to admit. Those mythologies were used as means to explain the environment in which humankind lived, the natural phenomena they witnessed and the passing of time and seasons.

Mythology has catalyzed the emergence of a rich and profound body of artistic works. In fact, this exactly peaked my interest in mythology in the first place. Here are some of my favs:

The titan Saturn eats all of his sons in fear of
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Anyone starting-with-the-Greeks? 7 85 Oct 31, 2018 11:50AM  
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Edith Hamilton, an educator, writer and a historian, was born August 12, 1867 in Dresden, Germany, of American parents and grew up in Fort Wayne, Indiana, U.S.A. Her father began teaching her Latin when she was seven years old and soon added Greek, French and German to her curriculum. Hamilton's education continued at Miss Porter's School in Farmington, Connecticut and at Bryn Mawr College near Ph ...more

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