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Mythology by Edith Hamilton

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Mythology is a book made by Edith Hamilton in 1942 that tells timeless tales of gods and heroes, every story in the book comprises from different sources, that gives the book a very unique taste. The book was published by Grand Central Publishing in New York, but it was originally published in hardcover by Little, Brown and Company. The topic and purpose of Mythology by Edith Hamilton is to help readers gain knowledge on the myths from pure information on why they were made, to the story of The Trojan War made by Homer, though there were different writers in which the various stories in the Mythology came from. The main scheme of Mythology is to give the readers an idea of what the writers of these myths were like and to help them distinguish the differences among them, through the stories they wrote.Edith Hamilton’s book of Mythology was very informative but also analytical. Combining different works of contrasting writers gave the book a grand perspective of how different people or writers reflected and perceived of the Greek Myths through how they wrote them, which also gives the book a greater field of information due to the different sources that were included, as was said in the book, “A book on Mythology must draw from widely different sources.” In which I completely agree with. Mythology was greatly formulated through the way it was wrote, from starting about the origins of the myths, who the writers were, and why they were made, to the actual stories that were wrote by the writers and how the stories followed an almost sequential order and how it evolved to even more stories from there. It was an okay book that has a unique style to it that also has a lot of effectiveness in it as to the uses of the book in schools, and the book attracts readers with high comprehension skills and it was meant to be for readers above a high school level most likely, though the book may be one sided towards the Greeks.

Mythology explains the creation of the myths as how the Greek and the Roman “race thought and felt untold ages ago”(Hamilton 1). The book gives insight on how their gods were created, saying that “The Greeks made their gods in their own image”(Hamilton 5). Although the showing of the varied gods throughout the myths from different sources show them in many naive ways, such as stories of Cupid and Lovey like things, for sake being, may induce readers to think of generally happy stories. But Mythology has proven it wrong, showing that there are indeed dark spots within these foretold myths. From there, the book touches on the gods and their creation, as well as how the early Greeks used them as a prop for how everyday phenomenons occur,how mankind and the world was created, and it touches on general stories of Mythology. The book starts out with the introduction straight into The Two Great Gods of Earth, where it explains the relationship between the seasons and harvest, as well as the causes and effects of drinking wine. From there it goes into how the world and mankind was created, then a couple chapters later it talks about the Flower-Myths, basically telling how certain flowers came into existence (the Flower-Myths were all love stories), then it goes onto stories of certain people, such as the story of Pygmalion and Galatea, then it goes to the Trojan War which is where a war is started because of a golden apple, and the Greeks end up winning.

Mythology is a great piece of work that demonstrates the use of different stories and how to incorporate them into one whole piece that turns into a book of great information on the actual Greek Mythology and the writers of the stories. The book is well organized and IGN would rate this a ten out of ten. The book Mythology has an organization that is very well formatted, as said before, showing an almost sequential order throughout each story, from the way it started by explaining the origin of the myths and the purpose of them, so that proceeding stories would be easier to comprehend, rather than having the essential information to know in the middle of the book. The book touches on ideas that are essential to know before jumping into actual stories of Mythology made by the writers, and it makes it so that information could easily be interpreted, such as how in the Introduction To Classical Mythology, it mentions the dark spots, which are “traces of a time when there were beast-gods”(Hamilton 9) and “stories which point back to a time when there was human sacrifice”(Hamilton 9), this incorporation at the beginning of the book helps readers understand parts of the stories that relate to the dark spots, such as in the chapter, How the World and Mankind Were Created, where Prometheus was tortured, saying, “All day long he will tear rags your body”(Hamilton 91), so from there the readers can interpret that this was part of the dark spots that Edith Hamilton mentions, overall the organization of the book was very good,

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