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» » Dictionary of gods and goddesses, devils and demons
Dictionary of gods and goddesses, devils and demons e-book


Manfred Lurker





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Routledge and K. Paul; First Edition edition (1987)





Dictionary of gods and goddesses, devils and demons e-book

by Manfred Lurker

Book Condition: Ex Library Book with usual stamps and stickers. Tan to the page edges. Over 6 Million items sold.

Book Condition: Ex Library Book with usual stamps and stickers. 5 people found this helpful.

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This dictionary covers, in one volume, over 1,800 of the most important deities and demons from around the world. We’re dedicated to reader privacy so we never track you. We never accept ads. But we still need to pay for servers and staff. I know we could charge money, but then we couldn’t achieve our mission: a free online library for everyone. From classical Greek and Roman mythology to the gods of Eastern Europe and Mesopotamia, from Nordic giants to Islamic jinns and Egyptian monsters, it is packed with descriptions of the figures most worshipped and feared around the world and across time.

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Containing around 1,800 entries this Dictionary covers, in one volume, all the important deities and demons from around the world. The gods of ancient mythology appear alongside the gods of contemporary religion, and `lesser' mythologies and religions are also fully covered. The author provides an extensive network of cross-references, allowing the reader to draw cross-cultural comparisons. The Dictionary will be an invaluable source of information for anyone interested in comparative religion or the diversity of religious views throughout the world.
greed style
This is hands-down the BEST reference for this sort of thing. The author took the time to dig up a lot of somewhat obscure names. While there aren't a lot of details on every being in there, there's enough information to get you started and pointed in the right direction. There's also a fabulous index, where you can look up the deity or demon by type/aspects.

This is the book. Get this book and then never ever give it away.
The number of entries is impressive. The articles themselves are often too short and do little to convey the richness of the literary heritage these figures represent or their place in their original cultures. The appendix in the back of the book, linking the different gods to their functions is helpful, but sometimes there are bothersome errors, like Lurker's insistance that Apollo is a death god. The translator did not take the time to research standard English spellings for some of the gods and goddesses, which can make it hard to find an entry. It should not be one's sole source for mythological reference.
Great resource
Interesting to study the belief systems of ancient world groups.
This is not a very clear book. The author just throws everything ever written about a God or Goddess without it making any sense. There are better books out there, but this is not one of them. When you look up a Goddess, it should say what she was noted for and any dark side she has. The author throws word after word without any explanation. An example: Odin was best known as a God that gave us the Runes and searched for knowledge. The author calls him a God of the underworld. Really? Odin is not known in any book I ever read as any underworld God. If you buy this book you are going to be very confused about what these Gods and Goddesses did or stood for. It is just to thrown together.
great resource for art and writing.
This is a good dictionary of mythological beings considering it was published in 1987. As other reviewers have noted, the entries do not go into a lot of depth, but I don't think that's a fair critique for a *dictionary*.

-- inclusion of obscure deities/beings from tons of different cultures
-- generous margins for making notes
-- appendix of functional categories (e.g. sky deities, sun deities, fertility deities)
-- appendix of motifs, attributes, and symbols (e.g. specific animals, colors, numbers, and objects associated with the beings)
-- good/convenient size for a casual reference book
-- etymology: there are often explanations of the names of the deities (but not always)
-- historical evolution: for major deities it often explains how conceptions of them changed over time (e.g. maybe you start out as a local sun god but then get folded into another god, or maybe you decline in importance and get replaced by another god, or you pick up specific symbolic associations later on that you didn't start with)

-- it doesn't seem to be 100% comprehensive; it's commendable for a book published in 1987 but you can get more info on the web now
-- some beings listed in the appendix lack entries in the dictionary or show up under variant spellings/names (I've noticed this for Native American and especially Chinese deities)
-- some beings listed in the appendix under categories without any clear explanation in the entry (e.g. if it's a sky god, then why is that fact not mentioned somewhere in the entry?); I'm not qualified to say if it has errors but it makes you wonder
-- illustrations/graphics are minimal and those that are included seem to obstruct the margin where you might want to make notes
-- some redundancy among beings listed (not just Zeus and Jupiter, but other deities with multiple names or unclear status as unique gods)
-- despite the useful appendices, there's no way to study by culture (e.g. if I want to look up all the gods of the Yoruba culture, there is no real way to do that short of flipping through the whole book page by page); another appendix for this would have been wonderful
-- there isn't much information on time periods; it would be neat to see exactly how old some of these deities are, even if it's just an approximation
-- despite being a dictionary of "Gods and Goddesses, Devils and Demons" it includes many lesser spirits, angelic beings, and things of that nature; in my opinion, their inclusion is a good thing, but it's important to have an accurate title and not pigeonhole everything as either a god or demon.

This book is really geared for symbolism research and basic comparative mythology, though I originally used it to look up weird mythological references from video games (e.g. Tiamat, Ragnarok). It's portable and great for taking notes and looking up obscure deities. If you want to get more of a sense for the narratives and cultural traditions or just more information, then you'll need a bigger book and probably several because there's just no way to cram absolute everything about mythology into one small book. I've personally gotten so much use out of this book that the binding is failing and pages are starting to fall out (I've had the book for nearly twenty years and really abused it so that's to be expected). I would love it if there was an app similar to this book (maybe there is and I just haven't found it yet).
This book the Routledge Dictionary of Gods, Goddesses at alia was originally published in German in 1984 as the Lexicon det Gotter and Damonen by Alfred Kramer. It was then translated and republished in English in 1986 by Routledge and Kegan Paul, Ltd. That went out of print and so the publishers reissued the 1986 British English version in 2004.

It does not cover Egyptian gods, (like Bast, Isis), Christian Saints nor Hindu gods but specifically addresses this time period:

From classical Greek and Roman mythology to the gods of Eastern Europe and Mesopotamia; from Nordic giants to Islamic jinns and Egyptian monsters, this classic dictionary is packed with descriptions of the figures most worshipped and feared around the world and across time. Fully cross-referenced and with over 100 (black and white poorly rendered photographs and line) illustrations, it also features two handy appendices listing the functions and attributes shared by these deities and demons.

So with that said, it is extremely good with the development of pagan gods and how those cults flourished in different areas, but alas there is a poor index for finding such information so the hardcover is a bit harder to use than the epub format..It has a great bibliography btw.

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